Talk:Robin Cook

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I've removed the section about Robin Cook, the novelist, because I suspect copyright infringement: it's almost identical to the biography at .

To the poster: If there was permission to use this material under terms of our license or if you are the copyright holder of the externally linked text, then please indicate so.

The posting of copyrighted material that does not have the express permission from the copyright holder is possibly illegal and is a violation of our policy. If this is in fact an infringement of copyright, we still welcome any original contributions by you.

--Paul A 02:27 Mar 27, 2003 (UTC)

As I put in the other talk page, you can't copyright facts, lists of facts, etc. You can only copyright artistic creations. Therefore, despite claims of copyright, there is nothing enforceable. The article has been rephrased and changed around anyway, and wil probably be even more later, as if it matters. But I'm pissed, so you married it. I won't contribute anything more to that article. --

Please don't contribute anything more to the Wikipedia, if it's of the same quality. -- Zoe


Mr. Afmin, you asked in the article for a cource concerning the unknown stranger. Again and again I provide the sources. Always. Just take into account that the official narrative is full of holes and that with your actions to retell the governments story you block the truth. Reliable sources and logic back my viewpoints. But you are eager to wipe them out. Why? 14:38, 26 July 2006 (UTC)

Again a good reaction. As soon as I provided the link to the Times which stated that a unknown person was at the place where Cok died the information plus the source were wiped out. This is complete, obvious and fascist censorship. 09:22, 27 July 2006 (UTC) ---

Mr. Admin likes to reedit the article every time to the "official version". Which includes false claims, suppression of most important information and blunt ignorance.

- "was pronounced dead on arrival" is defibitevly wrong (and you have no source. I have )

- "he suffered a severe heart attack" is a claim uttered by ONE witness.

- "he then fell down" ONE witness again. In full ignorance of the stranger who handed his cell phone, in full ignorance of the paramedics who did NOT claim "heart attack" as first impression.

- take the BBC as a source and compare the expression "rather than from injuries sustained in his fall". This one is not BBC. It is from the Guardian. [1]

Conclusion: both sources just quote the official version published by the Crown office in Edinborough. This was 4 (four) days after his death. Mr. Admin does not even ASK why a post mortem of a simple heart attack takes FOUR DAYS and if it is adequate or normal. It is defibitively not. 07:16, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

There seems to be a number of attempts from different sources to editorialise this and although different editors are reverting the vandals the Wikipedia:Requests for page protection earlier and latest activity have made me concurr that locking the page is the best option for the moment. --Vamp:Willow 22:20, 6 August 2005 (UTC)

You are just trying to cencor the content,Thats all is cover up. User:

Excusez-moi? I'm sorry, but I just added a couple more sentences describing circumstances of his death, as it seems strange to me that no major news outlets seem to be saying anything more than that 'he collapsed'. Surely this is appropriate until more concrete details of the cause of his death have been found out?

13:41, 11 December 2005 (UTC) After two weeand another try to post information still no answer here to this : Hello Mr. Admin: it is definitely censorship if you do not allow to introduce the information that he had serious injuries and a broken neck. Secondly: you have a certain understanding WHY he had these injuries. This understanding is the same as the the “official” one, and it is definitely a current and possible one. BUT: as everybody is able to understand there is only ONE person who is the source: Cooks wife. So, to end it up why do you just not introduce a section “Alternative viewpoints” and pack in all the information about the unknown stranger, about the nodiscussion of the broken neck in the public, about the one and only witness. And then - to feel happy – tell the public that you for sure distance from that viewpoint.

Or if you do not know if there are sources: why do not just ask for sources ? Take the very first informations of the “Guardian”, the “Mirror” and the “Sun”. And the logic.

my edit was first censored because (allegedly) missing quotes and sources. Now I added them, and it is censored again.

WHY ? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 15:24, 12 October 2006

Presumably because it was written attrociously, and the choice of tone was even worse. How do you justify the use of the word "miraculously" for instance. Nowhere does the cited article assert that anything miraculous happened. There's absolutely nothing miraculous about another walker being on the same path at half-past 2 in the afternoon. It's a hill path frequented by walkers. That's why they were there, after all. Furthermore, the additional text was redundant. All the points you made are both made and addressed in the following paragraph covering "controversy". Wikipedia has a strict policy of neutrality. Try sticking to it (whilst writing proper English, and not badly punctuated pidgin, and your edits will no doubt be considered valuable contributions.
Oh, and try sticking to the convention of adding your discussion at the bottom of a segment. That way people have some rudimentary chance of following the thread. Thanks. Cain Mosni 18:22, 12 October 2006 (UTC)
I removed what you added and Cain is right about the reasons. --Guinnog 18:33, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

I have read both BBC sources and UK newspapers refferring to the stranger, if they are not sources then what is? I note that the stranger is still "missing" from the article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:35, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Why can there not be a separate page dedicated to the conspiracy theory of his death? Valetude (talk) 10:29, 16 June 2014 (UTC)


As it appears that his death was a combination of "ill-health" and "accident" is there a list of "significant figures who died as a result of accidents" to which he could be added? (This would include the Greek philosopher who was killed by a falling tortoise.


"At his death he was president of the Foreign Policy Centre, and the Party of European Socialists, and a vice-president on the America APPG and the Global Security and Non-Proliferation APPG."

Is this really true, and do we have a source? I know he was president of the PES at one time but I was fairly sure he left that post a year or more ago. — Trilobite (Talk) 22:23, 6 August 2005 (UTC)

I converted "He is currently ..." which was in the article at the beginning of today, to "At his death he was ...". The APPGs appear to be correct - the America APPG usually has all ex-Foreign Secretaries in senior posts, and he was certainly still President of the FPC. I'll check the PES Presidency as I think this is an biannual changeover post. David | Talk 23:30, 6 August 2005 (UTC)
Now corrected - see PES website for his Presidency dates. David | Talk 23:33, 6 August 2005 (UTC)

I can't find him on the FPC's web site. (But I can't find any references to a president) Secretlondon 08:05, 7 August 2005 (UTC)

See Guardian guide to thinktanks. Cook set up the FPC in 1997 shortly after becoming Foreign Secretary, basically to provide him with a loyal think tank. I think 'President' is really an emeritus position which they gave him in order to keep him involved. David | Talk 15:08, 7 August 2005 (UTC)

Why has this page been locked?[edit]

No major vandalism or edit war seems to have happened why lock it?

Jackliddle 22:25, 6 August 2005 (UTC)

Please unlock page to allow genuine editing. if the Popes weren't locked why is this. Please support my case at Wikipedia:Requests for page protection, SqueakBox 22:31, August 6, 2005 (UTC)

It is fine now, SqueakBox 23:27, August 6, 2005 (UTC)


The article states that Madeleine Albright attended the funeral, but my recollection is that she was unable to because of illness. Can someone confirm this? Geoff97 21:35, 20 November 2005 (UTC)

You recollection is confirmed, however Joschka Fischer did attend.,,1548291,00.html 20:19, 22 September 2006 (UTC)

Copyrighted image?[edit]

The image of Cook in Commons, linked to from this page, has the tag: "This image is a work of a U.S. military or Department of Defense employee, taken or made during the course of an employee's official duties."

Was Cook really an employee of the US military?? Suggests this could be a copyrighted image and should be moved to a fair use category. — SteveRwanda 15:00, 9 March 2006 (UTC)

The tag means that the image was taken by a US government employee in the course of that employee's official duties... WJBscribe 19:25, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

This article is quite biased[edit]

The person who wrote this article is probably working for the government, and seems like an apologist of the 'official' story. In every single statement he makes regarding the death,he/she attempts to back up the official story – without explanation. Ask yourselves: what do they have to gain? Are they working for someone who wants to believe this? Cook isn't the first person who died when he got on the wrong side of Blair. This article is quite biased. 19:37, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

Just going back to June 2006, there have been 100 editors of this article. To talk about "the person who wrote this article" is therefore a nonsense. Perhaps anon IP address would like to tabulate exactly where the article is [allegedly] quite biased. The hundreds of editors (since the article's inception) can then have their say.Phase4 23:31, 8 October 2006 (UTC)
I put in that paragraph because I was sick of the ridiculous assertions being made, usually by unregistered users strangely enough. I have taken care to explain what would seem the logical background to the various outlandish claims made regarding the circumstances of the death. It's very hard to back up something that is a simple fact, such as a 50-something man having a heart attack after physical exertion, these things simply happen. There is a place for conspiracy theories, but not here. If you know that the true facts are different and can back up your assertions, I'd be very pleased for you to insert them into the article. User:lawsonrob 22.12, 9 October 2006

Depiction in popular culture[edit]

Could someone add a section on Cook's depiction on Spitting Image and elsewhere. He was sometimes shown as a gnome and most often his speech style was spoofed as being hard to understand along with a genuine verbal tick to extend certain vowel sounds. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 15:48, 13 February 2007 (UTC).

Viewfinder, a B and a V are neighbours on my keyboard. Please do not try to make up a war on such a small mistake. You will find more misspellings in my posts: a question of speed. Speed is necessary because there are people who wipe my points away before anybody can see them and judge. So "it seems" to you there is a contradiction ? Between yes and no we can find lots of "maybes" but here we have two very clear FACTS contradicting.

What about the wanderer ? Sometimes he appears, somtimes not. What about the broken neck ? What about Gaynor not knowing she is Cooks wife and leaving the place with the stranger ? And so on:

STOP brushing the controversies away.

Ask and edit - I will support any real work.

And do not force me to learn ALL ABOUT Wikipedia. I do not want to be menber of the club but I am willing to improve the article according the Wikipedia rules. Again: where is the Admin ? You wanted to call.

Or shall I do it ?

Controversy over death[edit]

There has been some controversy surrounding the death of Robin Cook. Some people have commented upon the length of time between his alleged heart attack and the official record of death which was allegedly caused by the time it took the emergency services to reach the remote location. But after being transported into the hospital it took another 3 hours before he was reported to have died.("But it was more than three hours later before police confirmed his d"[2])

Some people note the discrepancy between the official narration that his wife Gaynor had to call a stranger for asking him to call for help on his mobile phone and the report of the eulogy where Cooks last words were cited, written via SMS on his mobile phone. So they claim to get knowledge about the stranger.

He had been injured in the fall following his heart attack, suffering a broken neck, is the official explanation for his broken neck.

There are only two possible witnesses to state this succession of events: the unknown stranger and Cook`s wife.

The post mortem, carried out four days later, stated that he had died instantly from a severe heart attack, brought on by high blood pressure. It was not published but only cited by the Crowns Office in Edinburgh. This declaration did not even mention the broken neck.

It did not mention that Cook already had reached the summit of Ben Stack either according to his last SMS.( "Am at top of Ben Stack, view of Arkle and Foinaven can't be seen for mist - weather foul. Wish you were here."[3]) Which excludes high blood pressure at the time of his death. It does not mention the contradiction between his wife`s account (some steps before reaching the summit) and his own SMS statement.

All the facts can be obtained by reading the very first reports on Times-Online, Sun, Mirror and Scotsman online editions.

More here: [4] —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Viewfinder (talkcontribs) 15:39, 11 May 2007 (UTC).

I transferred the above material from the main article, where it was posted by Viewfinder 15:44, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

There may be a case for some of the above material in the main article, but I cannot follow some of its logic. Why does the fact that he had reached the summit exclude the possibility of high blood pressure? It does take time for emergency services to reach remote locations, that is normal. And I find nothing suspicious in the fact that it took three hours to report his death. Is it not usual to delay reporting a man's death until next-of-kin have been informed? I don't think the German website is an adequate citation per WP:RS. If there are discrepancies in the official narration, then these need to be better clarified and presented in a verifiable manner. Viewfinder 15:55, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

--- Viewfinder|: 1. You deleted twice material without comment. Vandalizing instead of disussing is not the way Wikipedia works. 2. To make the encyclopedia better you need to have a substance to improve it. That is why I will post the original material again. 3. Your comments and questions are welcome..

Here some answers:

- a) there is no sense to include "some of the material" into the article. We are taling controversial, that is why the EXTRA section was introduced. -b) If you cannot follow the logic: here is the discussion board. Feel free to ask and to argue: I am perfectly willing to correct sentences. -c) If high blood pressure in general was said to be the cause of Cook`s death underlined by his wife`s narration of him being only steps from the summit and being faster than she was IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO KNOW THAT HE HAD ALREADY REACHED THE SUMMIT. It is what we call a CONTRADICTION. That is why we have the section : to point out the contradictions. You delete them. Hypertensive blood disease may end deadly. But he was under surveillance, Ben Stack is not very high, and HE WAS NOT CLIMBING ANYMORE . All this contradicts the official version. You vandalized it.

-d) You say: "And I find nothing suspicious in the fact that it took three hours to report his death." Neither me. And I agree to your cause why to delay it. But then tell us why this delay was not mentioned in the media and not here in the article ? The delay was not caused in the facts, as you may find out. Cook was 100% dead on his arrival. It was the police which did withold the public proclamation. Why ? Obviously because of the broken neck. Which does not appear in the public discussion any more but which caused the post mortem. Or do you think that every corpse gets a post mortem especially when it seems to be allegedly so cristal clear that people with hypertensive blood disease use to die frequently when wandering ?

-e) Your claim that you do not like the website is interesting. Name another one which provides more and better information about cook`s death.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

With all due respect,, the material that you added is not in a suitable format for a main article. Please do not accuse me of vandalism. I deleted your material ONCE (another editor deleted it before me), I transferred it here, and commented at some length. A website in German is not a suitable source for English wikipedia because it cannot be easily used for verification by those without good knowledge of German, and there are questions about its reliability. I still cannot see how the three hour delay should be given as evidence for controversy, and that he reached the summit is insufficient evidence. (I am a hillwalker too). Ben Stack may not be very high but it is a steep climb and it has to be climbed from near to sea level. Hillwalkers can and do collapse on such mountains. Viewfinder 19:02, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Personally, I have never been sure that there were no suspicious circumstances, but claims of controversy should only be made on Wikipedia if the controversy has been public, and claims of public controversy must be better sourced per WP:RS and WP:V, and less of the writer's personal analysis of the situation. Otherwise, a better place to push your analysis would be a blog, forum or your own website. Viewfinder 19:37, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

As you may have noticed I was not the only one who worked on the section too. You destroy, erase, delete and vandalize what others try to find out, make better and post here to get improved.

That is a simple and obvious fact.

The Website which was so disturbing to you (but which contains all the sources needed in this disussion) I left out now. And I am waiting for your proposal for a better website which discuses the death of Mr. Cook.

When you judged Ben Stack to be a breathtaking walk, feel free to do so. It is irrelevant because I could prove that Cook was already on the top since about one hour when he died. That contradicts the narration of his wife. It should be said. As it must get common knowledge

- the broken neck

- the unknown wanderer

- the delay in the post mortem and the pronounciation d death

and so many other details which do not fit together. I do accept that you may have another explanantion for all of that. Untill now I did not see any explanation. I only notice who the divergential narrations are cut out for only one still standing.

You cannot discuss and explain and make up your mind if you do not know the facts. Do not try to hinder me to introduce facts. Or do you doubt the SMS ? So say so. Or do you doubt the broken neck ? Then tell us. Or do you kno there was no third person ? Tell us. And so on.

You have - untill now - vandalized. You did not cooperate to make the article better. Decide how you will go on.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Be sure that I have been editing in good faith, and supply a reliable source to support your claim that there has been public controversy on this issue. Two other editors have deleted your material from the main page. Viewfinder 20:10, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
I am also unable to find, in your Sun and Scotsman sources, evidence of a contradiction between the official account and his wife's account. Viewfinder 20:20, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Viewfinder: I am able to provide more sources - but you are the one who erase what I provide. You "threatened" to report this all to the administration. I tell you openly: Feel free to do so. I WANT TO GET IT PUBLIC THAT THE CONTROVERSY GETS VANDALIZED.

Report it.

I agree with Viewfinder's removal of this material. It is just speculation and hearsay. Please bear in mind the policy set out at Wikipedia:Verifiability: "The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth. "Verifiable" in this context means that any reader should be able to check that material added to Wikipedia has already been published by a reliable source." Please cite reliable sources (preferably multiple independent reliable sources) that have previously published claims of controversy over Robin Cook's death (a web forum is not a reliable source). Please also avoid weasel words like "some say". —Jeremy (talk) 20:44, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

As I said: I see The Times, Sun, Mirror and Scotsman as reasonably reliable sources. It is you who censor those sources out. Weasel words ? Make your own research: It was the me who introduced facts and sources - the weasel words liek "some say" are not mine. I did not erase them. It seems to be a sin not to delete what others write.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

OK, so if there are articles in the Times, Sun, Mirror and Scotsman that discuss these allegations of controversy over Robin Cook's death you should have no problem in giving specific citations. The sources, dates of publication, and titles of the articles would be sufficient. —Jeremy (talk) 12:43, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

OK. You Jeremy the Wise grant to me what is Wikipedia policy ? Thank you very much. I appreciate very much your sovereignity an I will kiss your feet.

Again: please note the Admin board. I am waiting.

Secondly: Must the article which you allow me to present here have the headline "Controvery over Robin Cook`s Death" ? Do you expect in the first line a statement like

"We, the editors of "The Scotsman" herby declare the following facts as so contradictionary to the official version that we judge this article to be worth to be submitted to Jeremy the Wise"?

You will not get that. Be assured. No chance.

I tell it again: The Scotsman quoted a SMS message by Robin Cook. This contradicts all stories about him not having a mobile phone, about him not having reached the summit, about the need to call a stranger, about the sudden collapse while climbing.

I quoted it. It is a veryfiable source. I am not responsible for the contradiction, and I see no cause why Wikipedia should only retell one version and not the other.

There are lots of those contradictions. I would like to post them. I have no problem if they get edited, if opinions arise (although I prefer that any reader makes up his mind himself on the base of the diverging facts). But I reject this vandalism.

Again: if you do not call the Admin, I will do it, and if necessary I will plug through Login procedures and so on. Make this controvery public. I do want it. Because I am right - and you are ....

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Hmm, interesting variety of IP numbers. Please could you provide a reliable source for your claim about stories about him not having a mobile phone or not reaching the summit? If you can, then there may be a contradiction which is worthy of mention in the main article. Viewfinder 14:04, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

Here you are, Biewfinder: "Neither of the Cooks was carrying a mobile phone but Mrs Cook’s cries for help were answered by a walker, who called the emergency services at about 2.23pm" Source:

But what with all the other contradictions ? Ask me: i will deliver. But not when you or Jeremy wipe away my findings. Again: call the Admin. I want it.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Please sign your posts in future. And take more care to spell my username correctly. Misspellings of usernames can cause offence, especially in the light of the earlier vandalism accusations. And we will continue to delete unsourced commentary. But there does appear to be a contradiction between [5] and [6] concerning the mobile phone, which could perhaps be pointed out in the article, but I'm not sure if this shows anything more than a case of mistaken reporting. Multiple contradictions may suggest something more sinister, if these can be shown then they should be listed in the main article, but I don't think it is for us to speculate about the motives, unless a reliable source can be found to support such speculation. Viewfinder 15:08, 12 May 2007 (UTC)
If there was a controversy, there needs to be a source for the controversy. Citing contradictory claims (from different sources) and deducing a contradiction sounds like original research to me. (JeremyA is an admin.) -- roundhouse 15:16, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

Additionally: you speculate. Not me. You speculate i.e. what a list of contradictions might make up. But in fact you block the appearance of suc a list. You talk about what might happen if more contradictions would be shown.

Is it the policy of Wikipedia to let everybody improve the articles ? Why do you work against that intention, why must I undersign and so on ? I sign by good and reliable sources, by interesting details. You dlete and continue to delete and steal a lot of time. By suggestions and opinion, but not by facts.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

It is clearly stated at the top of this page: Please sign and date your posts by typing four tildes. I will delete any further unsigned contributions to this page. Viewfinder 15:45, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

The additions in question have been reverted by four editors including an administrator. Please stop accusing us and use this talk page to make a good case, supported by appropriate reliable sources, for restoring the additions to the main page, so that the case can be debated before they are restored. Viewfinder 15:54, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

Test (more tomorow)

Ok randomipaddress, the article is now semi-protected. I, and I'm sure other editors, would like to discuss your contributions.

I think that there is definitely something worthwhile in your contributions, but the conclusions you draw from them are not appropriate for Wikipedia. It's the responsibility of editors to let the facts speak for themselves. If, as you seem to imply, this great man was murdered by the government, then the unvarnished facts will suggest that to the reader. However our task is to cite sources, and that is all. BillMasen 18:25, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

Hello, Bill Masen. Guess you got some things wrong. Because they were told you wrong.

You write about me: "...the conclusions you draw from them are not appropriate ... If, as you seem to imply, this great man was murdered by the government ..."

WHERE did I draw conclusions ? WHERE did I talk about the government ? Where did I imply something ?

I came into this article some days ago. I noticed a section called CONTROVERSY where two tables urgently appealed to add some facts and sources . Obviously it existed since month. When I added facts and RELIABLE sources the whole section got vandalized.

I am the one with the facts . That is undeniable. I am the one who can rely on reliable sources . Not those who wipe the section out again and again.

I did not make suggestions, conclusions, conspiracy theories. it is the others.

I have no problem if the article says: the post mortem says he died of a heart disease . But it is a fact too that he had serious injuries in his face. There may be diferent explanations -but the fact is there, it is verifiable.

There WAS a stranger around. Fact. But not reported in the Wikipedia article. This is onesided.

When there is a section called CONTROVERSY then let the people fill it. And when I am asked to quote a newspaper which exactly says: "Now we make up a controversy especially for Jeremy of Wikipedia" I am unable to do so. But it is not important that a reliable source CALLS it controvery but that it IS IN FACT a controvery. 07:45, 13 May 2007 (UTC) (or whatever IP you get next) please refrain from personal attacks. I asked you a simple thing, you said that there are newspaper articles stating that there is controversy over the death of Robin Cook, please provide a citation for at least one of these articles. That you responded so vehemently to this request rather than simply providing a citation suggests that such articles don't exist. Wikipedia does not publish original thought, the allegation that the death was controversial needs to have been made in reliable sources before it can be published here. —Jeremy (talk) 23:35, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

Hey ip address, can you provide a link for Gaynor's account of events (that he collapsed before reaching the top)?
Also, for the report on Cook's death which did not mention his broken neck as the cause of death?
You may have provided these at some time but there have been so many different edits that I have lost track of them. If you could dig them out it would be much appreciated. BillMasen 18:59, 13 May 2007 (UTC)
Hello Bill Masen, here you are:

"The post mortem will be completed tomorrow and should determine whether Mr Cook was killed by the illness which caused his collapse or by injuries sustained in his fall." Source:

This is a later version which already includes it was the fall causing the injuries. Which means: the result ist anticipated, any other cause of death is excluded. Compare the identity of this article with the BBC coverage.

About the neck in special: different YAHOO messages which are no longer available in the internet, Sun and Mirror. Be aware that paramedics can "only" guess what they see. But with a little experience ....As seen above: injuries in the face would never been enough to be judged as causing the death - and a post mortem. "Mr Cook, 59, who had suffered from high blood pressure and heart problems, is thought to have had a heart attack and fallen 8ft down a ridge, possibly breaking his neck." Source:

Not on top: Same source: "Gaynor Cook said: "Robin didn't say anything. He was only 10 feet away from me when he just collapsed." Or here:"The couple, both keen hill walkers, had been negotiating a steep, rocky section near the 2,365ft summit of Ben Stack, in Sutherland, when the former Foreign Secretary, who was on medication for high blood pressure, became unwell. ....The couple had set out in sunny conditions to climb the north side of the “gothically pointy” Ben Stack " Source:

But this is only to prove that I am able to provide different facts from the official version. I am not going to loose my time here in the DISCUSSION when others are allowed to wipe out my results of inverstigation. If YOU open up a section CONTROVERY then let people add their knowledge in - discuss it here in DISCUSSION and let us improve it together.

But what I see untill now is a very onesided, reduced and uncontroversial version following the official narrative. Wikipedia readers are unable to judge BY SOURCES, reliable ones BTW, what happened AND how it was transitted in the media. 09:02, 14 May 2007 (UTC)

As we may notice, Bill Masen does seem to be very delighted to have received an answer concerning h his question. Those who are interested to keep the circumstances of Robin Cook`s death under earth may prevail in Wikipedia. Not in the real world. 14:13, 20 May 2007 (UTC)

Actually, I am simply puzzled as to how this material supports what you say. The Times article does not say they had not reached the summit yet. As for the report on the cause of death, i am not sure it is too surprising that the pathologist's conclusion about the death was different from the paramedics'. BillMasen 14:29, 20 May 2007 (UTC)

Oh. Bill Masen insists in the exact formula. Take this, it is to be translated easily: Kurz vor Erreichen des 721 Meter hohen Gipfels sei er zusammengebrochen" - Source:,1518,368678,00.htmlThe Yahoo-News are not available anymore. Do you want it in a Reuters version too, or do you prefer the spanish one ? You just try to ignore the contradiction between what Cook said by SMS (having reached the summit) and the obvious fairy tale of a steep and power consuming effort to reach it which shall explain the sudden collapse.

That is the simple contradiction (one of so many). Having a mobile phone or not. Meeting with a third person or not. Broken neck or not. And so on. As you see it is against Wikipedia rules to block me out of the article. I can prove my allegations. Untill now we have a unproved hearsay version which is simply official. It is governments Wikipedia in this way. 20:06, 21 May 2007 (UTC)

I think I have added all of the facts you have presented. If you have others (or if I have missed any), I am sure you will let me know. I entitled the section "conflicting reports", as Wikipedia is not supposed to uncover controversy, only report on it as designated by others. If you can find me an MSM (mainstream media) suggestion of controversy, I will be happy to post it.

Incidentally, any delays to editing the article are because I have work to do, not because I can't be bothered. Please assume good faith in future. Regards, BillMasen 14:37, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Plaster Saint?

iI have no patience with the silly theorising about the man's death, but I do find the piece rather one-sided and hagiographical. The man was not a saint because he opposed the war in Iraq. At the time, I had the strong impression he was making a bid to lead Labour in the eventuality that the invasion went badly wrong and Blair fell from power (at a time when the outcome of the invasion was far from clear). Even then he misjudjed it and had to retract partially because of remarks he made about British troops in Iraq. When I met him (at an earlier stage) he impressed me as a highly intelligent man well-attuned to his personal political interests rather than a politician of principle (in contrast to Clare Short for example, whom popular memory of the Iraq war episode has treated less kindly). This is also the picture that emerges from his first wife's book. 22:03, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

I am not sure how the article portrays him as a saint? BillMasen 17:03, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

Then take another look at it. Is there any serious criticism of him? Are any of the negative aspects of his career (some mentioned by me above) discussed in any depth? Those members of the left who would always prefer to be in opposition rather than take responsibility, have made him into yes, a plaster saint, for his opposition to the war. I don't think that cap fits. Sorry to spoil the party Bill. (talk) 00:51, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

I know I'm flogging a dead horse, but that seems to be the order of the day just now. If you can a reliable source who shares your unsubstantiated "impressions", then you should add the information to the article. In any case, your sarcasm is inappopriate. BillMasen (talk) 11:08, 10 August 2009 (UTC)

My 'unsubstantiated impressions' (I met him - did you?) are substantiated further by his first wife's book, as I said already. Is she reliable enough? I think you should reconsider the balance of the article. If sarcasm is inappropriate, or even inappopriate, that cuts two ways Bill old chap. (talk) 17:43, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

Dodgy Maths[edit]

2000 pages multiplied by three seconds equals 6,000 seconds. Equals 100 minutes. 2 hours equals 120 minutes. So it's actually 3.6 seconds per page. Maybe change the phrase to 'under 4 seconds per page' Not that I'm being pedantic or anything... —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ray564k (talkcontribs) 21:14, 9 February 2009 (UTC)

On excluding the discrepancies of Cook's death[edit]

So now we are to exclude all mainstream media reports until the mainstream media have also put them together for us and also labeled it for us? We are not to write, add, report or call them on their discrepancies? I find that more than just a bit troubling. Is there noone else among the admins that sees a problem here? Really? George Orwell's 1984 accounts of the revision of history over time springs to mind.. Deceitful times indeed. "Free" access to "information", screened by yet another self appointed arbitrary group of two to five people according to their personal political preferences and lack of critical abilities to even include stories from the mainstream media that are already part of general public knowledge. "Information" society. Go figure.

If you object to wikipedia's policy of WP:RS, then you should take up that point on that page. What information, and what articles, are you saying the article should include? BillMasen (talk) 18:32, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Include this:

Quotes from the Times article:

  • "when Mr Cook, 59, suffered what is thought to have been a heart attack. Neither of the Cooks was carrying a mobile phone but Mrs Cook’s cries for help were answered by a walker, who called the emergency services at about 2.23pm."
  • "Between them, Mrs Cook, 48, and the man, who has not been named, gave Mr Cook mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and chest compressions under the telephone guidance of Inverness ambulance staff, until rescuers arrived by Coastguard helicopter at 3.01pm."
  • George Chrossan, the Stornoway Coastguard helicopter winchman who attended the incident, said that Mrs Cook had been on her own when Mr Cook suddenly collapsed and stopped breathing about 1,000ft below the summit. “He had not complained of any pain. He had fallen about eight feet down a ridge after collapsing, which resulted in a slight head injury. Gaynor kept asking me if he was dead, but obviously I couldn’t say anything,” he said.
  • "The urgency of the situation meant that there was no time to winch Mrs Cook on board, and she made her way back down the mountain with the stranger."

"which resulted in a _slight_ head injury" - how is that translated into a broken neck later on and why? professional paramedics in a helicopter are better than most to assess injuries. Do you get a job on an emergency helicopter if you have no medical skills and cannot even acertain the differnce between a broken neck and "a slight head injury"? The discrepancies are screaming at us but wikipedia admins are to pretend even mainstream news articles with the discrepancies exist until a journalist collect them and the newspapers print the facts collected in one article according to the reasoning of one admin here. The Times article state neither of the cooks had a mobile phone, while others claim he sent an SMS text message(!!!) And Why is "the mysterious stranger" left out of the article entirely??? How are all these discrepancies left out intellectual honesty?

Quote: "An unnamed friend who was with the MP on the mountain attempted to give Cook mouth-to-mouth resuscitation for 30 minutes before an Coastguard helicopter arrived at the scene."

Pretty obvious that people do not even bother to read anymore. Everything has to come pre-digested through television. Here's yet another proof of "discrepancies" to say the least:

Quote: Opening the service, Bishop Holloway told mourners how Mr Cook's son Christopher had received a text message from his father just an hour before he died. The text read: "Am at top of Ben Stack, view of Arkle and Foinaven can't be seen for mist - weather foul. Wish you were here."

See anything wrong with this picture? I thought not. Good luck with that. Nunamiut (talk) 12:46, 10 August 2009 (UTC)


In other words, the very least the article should contain is a few words that cite the above mentioned public media articles, statements and sources and a sentence on the fact that all these differing reports actually constitute discrepancies. Nunamiut (talk) 12:51, 10 August 2009 (UTC)

The article as I left it two years ago did mention these discrepancies. They've since been removed. You could add them back, that is if no-one objects...? BillMasen (talk) 20:59, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
Different media reports often say different, even contradictory, things as journalists search for scraps of information after an incident such as this one. For the article to mention the media reports is fine, for the article to imply that this is unusual, or points to some kind of conspiracy is original research. From WP:OR: Do not combine material from multiple sources to reach a conclusion not explicitly stated by any of the sources. Editors should not make the mistake of thinking that if A is published by a reliable source, and B is published by a reliable source, then A and B can be joined together in an article to reach conclusion C. This would be a synthesis of published material that advances a new position, and that constitutes original research. "A and B, therefore C" is acceptable only if a reliable source has published the same argument in relation to the topic of the article.Jeremy (talk) 22:17, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
My version only said that the reports contradicted each other, not that there was some kind of agenda behind that. BillMasen (talk) 16:49, 11 August 2009 (UTC)

I've been doing some research into this. There is one notable persom who has suggested Robin Cook was murdered - it is Norman Baker MP in this interview. He later retracted his comments on the grounds that they were "flippant" and states that he did not say Cook was murdered only that he "had doubts"

--AnthonyEMiller (talk) 05:31, 2 August 2011 (UTC)

MP and MA[edit]

I think typically the infobox is supposed to represent the person's final style and title at death, so I have added the letters MP. I see that some other MPs who died in office are lacking these letters, but I'll see whether consensus supports including them for Robin Cook.

Regarding his degree, if he graduated from Edinburgh I think it would have been impossible for him to have got a BA (Hons) degree followed by an MA. I suspect that he got an MA (Hons) degree, which is the usual undergraduate degree in a Scottish university. Is there any evidence to the contrary?--Oxonian2006 (talk) 01:23, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

Request for Comments[edit]

There is an RfC on the question of using "Religion: None" vs. "Religion: None (atheist)" in the infobox on this and other similar pages.

The RfC is at Template talk:Infobox person#RfC: Religion infobox entries for individuals that have no religion.

Please help us determine consensus on this issue. --Guy Macon (talk) 20:29, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

Locating Cook's political memoir 'The Point of Departure' with greater ease[edit]

Robin Cook the politician suffers the peculiar handicap (in the internet era) of sharing his name with not one, but two popular novelists; which makes Cook the Politician's own political memoir (which is excellent and highly informative about contemporary British politics) unreasonably obscure using common search engine techniques. (It is titled "The Point of Departure"; it was this precise title that I could not remember, and so I had turned to Wikipedia for help). Reference to Cook's wikipedia page is one obvious way for the searcher to resolve the difficulty, but even here, reference to the work is somewhat buried in an obscure paragraph. I have done what is easy to improve the situation (see my recent one word edit substituting one instance of the word 'book' for 'memoir' to aid down-page searching in the browser), but it occurs to me that a canonical link to a page discussing the book itself would be handy, but I do not have time to address this now. LaFolleCycliste 09:10, 15 February 2016 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by LaFolleCycliste (talkcontribs)

Death accidental?[edit]

Was Robin Cook known to have been injured in the fall caused by his heart attack? I could easily imagine such a fall could hasten his death. I have wondered if he could be listed in Records of members of parliament of the United Kingdom in the list of those who died accidentally. I note he is listed in the category of Mountaineering Deaths.Cloptonson (talk) 20:47, 27 March 2016 (UTC)