All posts filed under: media fakery

The Bloviations of Christiane Amanpour, Queen of Fake News

by Sassy Surstein, December 11, 2016 The last week has peppered my feed with a clip of Amanpour accepting an award from the Committee to Protect Journalists, those most valuable of all citizens if you ask a journalist. Having worked in “alternative” foreign-policy journalism for years, I’m familiar with this walking talking intel op’s career shilling for US foreign policy, and it ain’t pretty. But watching this speech made me actually feel my face turning red, my heart pump a little harder. This hack had the gall to warn us about the dangers of “fake news.” This, from the mouthpiece who had a major hand in the media demonization of the Serbian people that made it easier for the US to intervene in the Balkans wars and finish off the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. They bombed Serbia for 78 days, killing around 500 people. She also sneered at the “kangaroo courts” journalists often find themselves in after being accused of subversion (in bad non-Western countries, of course). In that room perhaps only she might recognize …

Terror Incognita: ‘Demistifying’ the Fog of War

by Sean Stinson, August 28, 2017 “The Muslim terrorist apparatus was created by US intelligence as a political weapon” – National security adviser to the Carter administration, Zbigniew Brzezinski “The truth is, there is no Islamic army or terrorist group called Al-Qaeda, and any informed intelligence officer knows this. But, there is a propaganda campaign to make the public believe in the presence of an intensified entity representing the ‘devil’ only in order to drive TV watchers to accept a unified international leadership for a war against terrorism. The country behind this propaganda is the United States.” – Former British Foreign Secretary, Robin Cook “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.” – H.L. Mencken Corporate propaganda is flying so thick and fast lately it’s dizzying just keeping up with it. For regular readers of the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Guardian, Vladimir Putin is the new Fuhrer of American …

CNN Hires Top al-Qaeda Propagandist for Documentary

by Jay Syrmopoulos, July 12, 2017, Free Thought Project Bilal Abdul Kareem, of On the Ground News, was contracted by CNN to film a documentary called Undercover in Syria.  Kareem is a self-proclaimed media activist living in rebel-held Syria and is considered “one of the top English-language propagandists for al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate Jabat al-Nusra,” according to an Alternet expose on Abdul Kareem and his connections to terrorism and CNN. On June 16 Abdul Kareem went public with his intimate connection to CNN, and its documentary “Undercover in Syria”.  He relayed his frustration with the network, having essentially whitewashed him out of his credit for a documentary he had a large hand in creating for CNN, which won a prestigious Peabody Award. Abdul Kareem explained how CNN contracted him and his online news outlet, On the Ground News, to film the award-winning documentary. “This was with CNN and their correspondent Clarissa Ward, which I have big-time respect for, big-time respect as a journalist, as a person,” Abdul Kareem said. “This Undercover in Syria, you can Google it — it won the prestigious Peabody Award, and …

Is the sarin also a lie?

by Catte Imagine the Cuban Missile Crisis – only the Cuban Missiles may not even exist. The most important aspect of the latest Syrian crisis is the one getting least attention in many quarters. Yes, Trump’s actions were deplorable. But let’s not forget they were also a response to an alleged chemical attack that may never have happened. It’s not just that we don’t know who was responsible for this attack (which of course we don’t, even slightly). It’s not just that this might be another Ghouta, which would be tragic and farcical enough, it’s that the attack itself has been so sketchily reported and so poorly validated that its reality remains far from certain. No investigation has yet been conducted. No independent witnesses have been cited. The main source for imagery and information is the White Helmets – who are known and admitted to have faked or distorted previous events. Some of that photo evidence is frankly questionable. The hilarious fact is we are currently – as Russian PM Medvedev said – on the …

Bana of Aleppo: the Story So Far

by Barbara McKenzie Back in 2011 there was the Gay Girl of Damascus, supposedly a young lesbian blogging from the Syrian capital in support of the Arab Spring, but who turned out to be a 40 year old man from Georgia, USA, living in Scotland. Now, five years on, we have @AlabedBana tweeting from Aleppo. The Bana story all began in September of 2016 when 7 year old Bana began to tweet from eastern Aleppo to share with the world her anxiety about living in a war-torn city. It is perhaps a sad reflection of the world we live in that her arrival on the social media scene provoked a certain amount of scepticism, hilarity even. It seems only fair to endeavour to consider the Bana case objectively. Bana, as we are told, lives with her parents and two brothers in Aleppo. Her mother Fatemah is a teacher who ‘manages Bana’s Twitter account’ and occasionally tweets herself, and her father Ghassan works in the ‘legal department of the local council’, whatever that means – the …

Saving Syria’s Children – The Worst Case Of Fake News?

from UKColumn SEE ALSO How far will they go to propagandise for war? (14 August 2016) Hand in Hand for propaganda? (9 August 2016) VIDEO: Robert Stuart’s presentation on BBC’s “Saving Syria’s Children” (8 March 2016) More puzzles about BBC’s “Saving Syria’s Children” documentary (28 October 2015) In the age of media manipulation how much can we afford to take on trust? (22 September 2015) We’ve talked about this topic many times on OffG, but at a time when “fakenews” is a hashtag, it’s worth returning to this most egregious and worrying example of – at best – sloppy reporting, or – at worst – wholesale deception. What happened at the Urm al-Kubra school on August 26 2013? Was it a chemical attack, a napalm attack or some sort of drill/rehearsal that was passed off as a real event? If the latter then where did the deception originate? Were the BBC Panorama crew, present at the Atareb hospital to film the aftermath of the alleged atrocity heroes, dupes or wilful advocates for a lie? Was …

Pannell Beaters…

by Mark Doran Various friends of mine — smart folks, every one of them! — are telling me that they expect Donald Trump to be ‘Grassy Knolled’ by elements of the US ‘deep state’ before he even graduates from ‘President-Elect’ to ‘President’ on 20 January. I myself don’t think that such an event is especially likely … as, to me, it appears far more probable that he and the people around him will be ‘disciplined’ by various powerful forces — not least those that act through state-corporate media — to the extent that his entire project simply mutates into another ‘cookie-cutter’ US administration dedicated to neo-imperial violence and corporate empowerment. The media-based ‘disciplining’ to which I refer actually has two aspects to it — and both of them can already be discerned without the slightest difficulty: first, there is the smacking; secondly, there is the silence. The ‘smacking’ is what you get when something you have done, or are merely said to have done, is used as something for which you can be hammered in …

Fake News and False Flags: Pentagon Paid Millions to Create Fake Terrorist Videos

How the Pentagon paid a British PR firm $500 million for top secret Iraq propaganda by Crofton Black and Abigail Fielding-Smith at the Bureau of Investigative Journalism A controversial foreign PR firm known for representing unsavory characters was paid millions by the Pentagon to create fake terrorist videos. The Pentagon gave a controversial UK PR firm over half a billion dollars to run a top secret propaganda program in Iraq, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism can reveal. Bell Pottinger’s output included short TV segments made in the style of Arabic news networks and fake insurgent videos which could be used to track the people who watched them, according to a former employee. The agency’s staff worked alongside high-ranking U.S. military officers in their Baghdad Camp Victory headquarters as the insurgency raged outside. Bell Pottinger’s former chairman Lord Tim Bell confirmed to the Sunday Times, which has worked with the Bureau on this story, that his firm had worked on a “covert” military operation “covered by various secrecy documents.” Bell Pottinger reported to the Pentagon, the …

How “The Syrian Campaign” Faked Its “70% Fleeing Assad” Refugee Poll

by Tim Anderson at Global Research As one might expect, during a war, misunderstandings are often driven by interested parties. In the case of Syrian refugees in Europe a US based organisation called ‘The Syria Campaign’ has helped drive some of these, including a claim that most of the refugees are ‘Fleeing Assad’. ‘The Syria Campaign’ is a Wall Street Public Relations creation and one of several interlocked, US-based groups (Avaaz, Purpose, the White Helmets) which have campaigned for a Libyan-style ‘no fly zone’ in Syria. That is, they work for NATO intervention on the side of the jihadist groups (see Sterling 2015). In any case, a careful look at the evidence allows us to see through this ‘refugees fleeing Assad’ scam. The Syria Campaign (2015) commissioned a poll in Germany which was apparently carried out by German academic Heiko Giebler. In it, 889 Syrian refugees were said to have been interviewed in Berlin, Hanover, Bremen, Leipzig and Eisenhüttenstadt. Candidates ‘were approached on entering or leaving registration centers’. However the survey does not specify how …

Scandal develops around ‘staged’ Ukrainian war photos

from the Moscow Times COMMENT FROM OFFGUARDIAN: We don’t make a habit of using the Moscow Times as a source, but we have decided to feature this curious piece as a part of our ongoing examination of the growing issue of media fakery. A Ukrainian journalist is being accused by his peers – not by Russians or by crazy conspiracy theorists – of faking images for war propaganda. Do we assume this is an isolated or unusual example, or an aspect of a developing tendency to blur the lines between fact and fiction, between actual reportage and dramatic reconstruction of events that can’t even be confirmed to have occurred? A Ukrainian photographer accused of staging an iconic image to engage with Russia in an “information war” has threatened legal action against his critics. Dmitro Muravsky, who works for the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, said that he would sue those who continued to “damage his reputation” by saying the photo was fake. Muravsky’s photo shows two soldiers carrying an injured comrade while a dramatic explosion tears through …

How far will they go to propagandise for war?

As the push for catastrophic intervention in Syria and other acts of equal insanity are being supported with ever more media hysteria, based on ever more dubious, implausible narratives, we need to be prepared to question way beyond our comfort zones. If we allow avowedly or actual “distressing” images or appeals to sentimentality or outrage to deflect us from rational investigation then we are behaving in exactly the way expected of us by those for whom human suffering, real or feigned, is just another useful tool for manipulation.

VIDEO: Hand in Hand for propaganda?

a short video concerning the BBC’s possibly fraudulent “Saving Syria’s Children” documentary Given the increasing hysteria of the media’s current reporting of the situation in Syria, which may well be the precursor of more violence to be rationalised as “humanitarian intervention”, we’re returning to our ongoing series on the BBC’s “Saving Syria’s Children” documentary and the numerous problems arising from it (see our previous articles here and here). If you have been following and if you’ve read Robert Stuart’s excellent investigation, you’ll know the BBC Panorama program in question featured a doctor named Rola Hallam, who works with the charity “Hand in Hand For Syria”, and who – according to the program – just happened tp be present at the Atareb hospital in Syria, with a Panorama film crew when a “chemical attack” occurred nearby at a school in Aleppo. We’ve already covered many of the reasons to question or even reject portions of this narrative, as well as some of the issues surrounding the charity Hand in Hand For Syria, but this short film …

Yellow Phosphorus, Starvation in Madaya, and BBC Fakery

by Craig Murray Cameron’s “moderate rebels” – Saudi supplied Wahhabi jihadists – have this past 48 hours been bombing civilian areas of Aleppo with yellow phosphorus. The BBC, which went to such extraordinary lengths to fake reports of chemical attacks by Assad, has not reported these genuine chemical attacks at all. Probably because it is too difficult to explain not just why Cameron’s allies are using chemical weapons – and who gave them the chemical weapons – but also why these “friendly” jihadists are attacking Cameron’s other allies, the Kurds, all during a ceasefire. This video of Robert Stuart is a must see. Let me pin my colours to the mast and say that I am absolutely convinced that the BBC did deliberately and knowingly fake evidence of chemical attacks. The most egregious BBC propaganda this year has been about the “starvation” of the town of Madaya. The BBC seem to have taken the most glaring example down from YouTube so I can’t embed it. But here on the BBC’s own website you can see the report which claims …

More puzzles about BBC’s “Saving Syria’s Children” documentary

This is our second look at the work of Robert Stuart, concerning the controversial BBC Panorama documentary “Saving Syria’s Children. ” When did the alleged chemical attacks actually occur? Why do accounts of the timing differ so widely? And why did producer Darren Conway become defensive and incoherent when asked one simple question?

Guardian accused of passing off terrorist “hell cannon” as “barrel bombs”

Robert Stuart, the indefatigable challenger of the media narrative through his analysis of the BBC’s “Saving Syria’s Children” program, is now taking on the Guardian. Below we publish his recent letter to the Graun’s complaints department regarding its use of a photo it claimed was a Syrian “barrel bomb”, but which is apparently no such thing.