You may not realise it, but one of the important tasks that the editors of the JME perform is to scan submitted manuscripts for potential libel. English libel laws are incredible strict and if we publish anything that is derogatory and likely to diminish a person or firms standing we may be sued for libel unless we can prove it to be true.
This is the case even if the exact same claim has already been published elsewhere, for instance in the USA because by publishing it again we would be perpetuating the libel.
Now, it is a fact about medical ethics that it is often highly critical of the actions and/or arguments of others. It is, for instance not infrequent to see claim that someone has acted unethically (libellous unless it can be proven to be true) or that someones’ arguments are perverse or even worse obtuse (libellous unless it can be proven to be true).
We therefore not infrequently have to ask authors to rephrase perfectly normal criticism to protect the JME and the author from libel suits.
There is now a campaign to reform English libel legislation. Please sign up to the petition at Libel Reform Campaign web-site to bring English libel law into the 21st century.