The big push to derail and/or exploit the Russian world cup for political gain has been unofficially launched today, with a gasp-inducing piece of misdirection by Ronan L Tynan on Twitter.
In case he decides to airbrush this shameful performance out of existence we have helpfully screen capped it for his records.
He began by posting an Amnesty video of a family in Raqqa who were allegedly killed by “coalition” (US) bombing after the vid was taken. The US destruction of Raqqa is of course a modern war crime, so heinous even Amnesty feels forced to acknowledge it, describing it as “a US-led war of annihilation“.
And let’s also be clear, the video specifically and repeatedly states the family was in Raqqa. It says it at the beginning:
In the middle:
And at the end, where it additionally specifies the family were killed by the criminal coalition bombing:
So, Ronan must have known their deaths had nothing to do with Russia or Putin.
But look at how he presented this video to the world on his Twitter feed:
Let’s just quote that text to make it absolutely clear:
Chilling @amnesty video seeing a family baking bread and then at the end told all later killed in airstrike in #Syria–powerful reminder so many entire families wiped out and holding #WorldCup2018 in #Russia only encouraging #Putin to cont mass slaughter?
Yes, that’s right, Ronan has hashtagged this video of a family murdered by the US in the criminal bombing of Raqqa, with “#Putin” and “#WorldCup2018”, and suggested holding the World Cup in Russia “encourag[es] Russia to cont[inue] mass slaughter.”
His hashtags and the words “encouraging Putin to cont mass slaughter” clearly give the impression to his followers that this tragic family was killed by Russian air strikes.
We need to ask ourselves why any responsible, objective journalist could do such a thing. How could he fail to see he was blatantly distorting the nature of the content he is presenting and, effectively, exploiting this allegedly dead family for some timely political propaganda?
We pointed out what he was doing:
And he replied with this “explanation”:
Which failed to convince us:
Ronan may attempt to blow smoke over his own actions, but he can’t eradicate what was – at best – grossly sloppy journalism, and, at worst, a hyper-cynical piece of opportunistic misdirection. It does him no credit either way.
This is very possibly just a taster of what we can look forward to over the next mont. The Sochi Winter Olympics brought us the Maidan and a coup in Ukraine. What the World Cup in Russia will bring us is – right now – anybody’s guess. Maybe Ronan can tell us.
For as long as it lasts, here is the actual Twitter feed in question:
Chilling @amnesty video seeing a family baking bread and then at the end told all later killed in airstrike in #Syria–powerful reminder so many entire families wiped out and holding #WorldCup2018 in #Russia only encouraging #Putin to cont mass slaughter? pic.twitter.com/t53Wyt5bSG
— Ronan L Tynan (@RonanLTynan) June 9, 2018