The strangest project

‘… truth.’

The word made its mark.  Broadcasting House was in fact dedicated to the strangest project of the war, or of any war, that is, telling the truth.  Without prompting, the BBC had decided that truth was more important than consolation, and, in the long run, would be more effective.  And yet there was no guarantee of this.  Truth ensures trust, but not victory, or even happiness.  But the BBC had clung tenaciously to its first notion, droning quietly on, at intervals from dawn to midnight, telling, as far as possible, exactly what happened.  An idea so unfamiliar was bound to upset many of the other authorities, but they had got used to it little by little, and the listeners had always expected it.

from Penelope Fitzgerald, Human Voices