All posts filed under: media watch

The Guardian’s propaganda on Venezuela: all you need to know

With the Constituent Assembly elections due to take place on July 30th, the Guardian published a piece titled “Venezuela elections: all you need to know”. But instead of breaking through the fog of falsehood and misinformation that is typical of the mainstream media’s coverage of Venezuela, the Guardian comes up with another propaganda piece laden with lies, distortions and omissions. In this article we go through the Guardian’s piece, clarifying the falsehoods, adding the conveniently omitted information and questioning the whole narrative that is presented.

Mass Arrests of Protesters: Outrageous in Russia, Barely Worth Mentioning in US

by Adam Johnson, July 13, 2017, FAIR Major media’s relative lack of interest in the mass arrests by Metro DC police on Inauguration Day is a fact noted by activists and journalists since the incident almost six months ago. One way to measure the dearth of coverage is to compare the attention paid to comparable protester arrests in Russia last month. On June 12, over 1,700 Russians throughout the country were arrested for “unauthorized protests” in opposition to President Vladimir Putin and government corruption. “Dozens”—including opposition leader Alexei Navalny—were kept in jail longer than a day, but the vast majority were let go immediately. (Navalny, as well as some others, got between 15–30 days in jail.) More than 200 Americans were arrested on January 20 after “rioting” broke out in downtown Washington, DC, in the hours leading up to and after President Donald Trump’s inauguration. Some were let go over the next few weeks, but the bulk of the 200+ still face 10–80 years in federal prison for “felony rioting.” It’s important to note at least two major differences …

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 …

Hungary: Paradise for liberals

by István Lovas Do you wonder what you are going to read in the mainstream press on Hungary tomorrow? I will tell you. The same as yesterday, and the same as in the past almost seven years since Hungary’s right-of-center Fidesz government, led by the Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, was elected. You will learn that Mr. Orbán is a populist, an autocratic ruler, a menace to Europe, and a politician not hesitating to use anti-Semitic language in order to win over voters of the far-right Jobbik, and cover up uncomfortable truths about whatever is on the agenda in Hungary on that day. He, of course, has muzzled the media, made the court system a handmaiden of the ruling elite, abolished checks and balances, while he is suffocating the voice of dissenters, creates inordinate fear, chases away half of the country beyond Hungary’s borders, and the rest of the stuff. Lately, Hungary has been called the safe haven of the European ultra-right. At the time when Hungary’s authorities have arrested and expelled two such figures, such …

Our media are not fit for purpose

by Philip Roddis This morning, just after eight, BBC Radio 4’s John Humphrys interviewed an American ‘expert’ – didn’t catch the name – on the first meeting, today, of Trump and Putin. In the time between my reaching for the bread bin, and two slices of the moderately browned popping from the toaster, said expert had presented as incontestable truth – no need to back up such a claim – Russia’s ‘aggression’ as against America’s ‘caution’. People buy this crap, you know, if only subliminally. Why? Because the west, anglo saxon west in particular, long ago traded independence of foreign policy for favoured status in Washington, so framing the boundaries for mainstream discourse on global affairs. And because, thanks to English as world lingua franca, most of us grew up on a cultural diet of the US as force for good: the orientalist corollary being the inscrutable asiatic; untrustworthy and capable of unspeakable acts. (Nowadays no one says such things out loud of course. An age that’s given rise to so many new and useful …

Reuters (finally) realize there are Nazis in Ukraine

by Kit Two days ago Reuters published this report, headlined “How Trump can show he’s tough on anti-Semitism”. I’m not sure why Trump – who has never been called an anti-Semite before, never publicly criticised Israel and whose daughter and son-in-law are both Jewish – suddenly needs to show he’s “tough” on anti-Semitism, but apparently he does. How is Mr Trump going to achieve this? He’s going to denounce Ukraine…because the government is endorsing fascism. For the sake of brevity I will present a bullet point list of the Ukrainian issues that so trouble the article’s author, Josh Cohen: “…local authorities [in Kiev] recently voted to rename a major street after a former Nazi collaborator and anti-Semite named Roman Shukhevych.” “In 2015, Ukraine passed a law honoring the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and its military wing, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, (OUN-UPA)” “Numerous Holocaust memorial sites – including Babi Yar, where over 33,000 Jews were slaughtered by the Nazis – have been vandalized or desecrated by anti-Semitic graffiti and swastikas.” “…the Ukrainian Institute of National Memory …

MSM headlines ignore heightened tensions in Syria conflict

The US shot down a Syrian warplane a few days ago, the pilot is currently being “held” by Kurdish forces on the ground. The plane was targeting moderate fighters under American protection, according to the Americans, and bombing terrorists according to the Syrian government. As a result of this, Russia has ceased cooperation with the US on air-missions over Syrian air-space, and issued several statements which amount to, essentially, an ultimatum. The Syrian government has written letters to the UNSC and intends to address them soon. Australia, in what appears to be a panicked “well, this is none of our business” move, has ceased all missions over Syria with immediate effect. You’d be forgiven for not knowing any of this was happening, given the front pages of Britain’s five major papers all chose to focus a on a collection of non-events and nothing issues: Considering that media-complicity in spreading anti-Assad and anti-Russian propaganda is a big reason the US-Russia tensions have been allowed to get this bad, that they should stick their heads in the …

Two Years of “Wrong” Votes: The Media Take Aim at Democracy

Jeremy Corbyn has won two leadership contests, and gained the largest vote share for Labour in decades. Hillary Clinton had to cheat to get past Bernie Sanders, and was then humiliated by Donald Trump. The UK voted to leave the EU. After two years of getting the “wrong” results thanks to voters refusing to do as their told, some areas of the media and intelligentsia are finally asking the tough question: Is voting bad for democracy?

What Did John Brennan and Anonymous Sources Really Say?

by Philip Giraldi from UNZ Review The Washington Post and a number of other mainstream media outlets are sensing blood in the water in the wake of former CIA Director John Brennan’s public testimony before the House Intelligence Committee. The Post headlined a front page featured article with: Brennan’s explosive testimony just made it harder for the GOP to protect Trump. The article states that Brennan during the 2016 campaign: reviewed intelligence that showed ‘contacts and interaction’ between Russian actors and people associated with the Trump campaign.” Politico was also in on the chase in an article entitled Brennan: “Russia may have successfully recruited Trump campaign aides”. The precise money quote by Brennan that the two articles chiefly rely on is: “I encountered and am aware of information and intelligence that revealed contacts and interactions between Russian officials and US persons involved in the Trump campaign that I was concerned about because of known Russian efforts to suborn such individuals. It raised questions in my mind whether or not Russia was able to gain the …

MSM trying damage control as May is mocked all over social media

by Catte Last night’s televised “Battle for No. 10” proved a cataclysmic disaster for the Tories. Before the debate even ended #TheresaMayGIFS was a trending hashtag on Twitter, representing her perceived failure in animated form. But this hasn’t stopped the establishment trying to rewrite history to turn defeat into victory In last night’s TV “battle” aired on Sky News and Channel 4 (it wasn’t a debate since there was no direct interaction between the two party leaders), Corbyn was competent. Not brilliant, but competent, but he effortlessly outshone May, because apparently bare competence is a thing she can only dream of. Even after the Tories sent pre-scripted talking points to all their members with instructions to Tweet them during the debate, and even after the famous Tory Jeremy Paxman made an exhibition of his bias by hectoring and screaming at Corbyn while allowing May to ramble and stumble uninterrupted for as long as she chose, the end result was a car crash, and #TheresaMayGIFS is currently a trending Twitter hashtag celebrating her grandiose and absolute …

BBC goes full Big Brother in recent announcement

Brought to our attention by Mark Doran, a new BBC document dated May 2017 contains this bizarre threat to its licence-payers: 9. Offensive or inappropriate content on BBC websites If you post or send offensive, inappropriate or objectionable content anywhere on or to BBC websites or otherwise engage in any disruptive behaviour on any BBC service, the BBC may use your personal information to stop such behaviour.  Where the BBC reasonably believes that you are or may be in breach of any applicable laws (e.g. because content you have posted may be defamatory), the BBC may use your personal information to inform relevant third parties such as your employer, school email/internet provider or law enforcement agencies about the content and your behaviour. Here’s Mark’s screen cap of the doc: Not only is this freakishly (yes, there’s no other word) Orwellian, it’s completely vague. Are the words “objectionable” and “disruptive” going to be employed like the words “hate” (currently being used to shut down discourse on social media), and “fascist” (currently being used by (often …

Imaginary interior of Saydnaya now has imaginary crematorium – State Dept.

Remember “Saydnaya Military Prison”? It was the subject of enormous media attention a while back on the basis of a “report” from Amnesty International that turned out to have been fabricated in the UK by a virtual reality company. Well, the totally imaginary interior of Saydnaya now – according to US State Dept – has a totally theoretical “crematorium” added to it in which to dispose of all the alleged corpses being generated by the unsubstantiated murders. Here is the massively impressive and plausible Stuart Jones telling us all about it.

Major Media Organize to Rig Web-Search Results

by Eric Zuesse at Strategic Culture The New York Times, as Robert Parry has pointed out, “Cheers the Rise of Censorship”, but only of censorship of any allegations that expose the fraudulence of the NYT’s allegations. The Washington Post, Google, the TV networks, and practically all of the famous providers of ‘news’, have joined forces in order to block from the internet any statements that contradict, or especially any evidence that disproves, what they collectively define to be ’true’; and, while they do this, they add a lie: that their sole aim in doing this rigging of web-search results is to prevent ‘misinformation’ from polluting your mind. They use as an excuse the existence of some flagrantly fabricated reports on obscure websites, but if the mainstream press can ban reports such as those, then they can also ban real news reports, which expose the mainstream’s own lies. In other words: they are implementing their collective power to block you from being able to know that they’re systematically lying. Will the public trust them with this …

The silence of the pseudo-left on the danger of war

by Eric London at Defend Democracy Press A wide range of nominally left-wing political groups and publications have acquiesced to a series of dangerous military actions by the Trump administration that have brought the world to the brink of war. On April 13, the US dropped the largest nonnuclear bomb ever deployed in history in the mountains of eastern Afghanistan. The Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB) bomb weighs over 10 tons and is so destructive it reportedly obliterated the homes of peasants living several miles from the drop zone. Four days later, Vice President Michael Pence traveled to the demilitarized zone on the Korean peninsula, where the US has threatened to use preemptive military force against the nuclear-armed North. Pence acknowledged that the MOAB bombing was aimed at proving that the US was prepared to go to war. “Just in the past two weeks,” he declared, “the world witnessed the strength of our new president in actions taken in Syria and Afghanistan. North Korea would do well not to test his resolve or the strength …

Media Lens skewers Monbiot’s Syria nonsense

The always incisive people at Media Lens have just done an excellent job exposing the most recent media campaign for a NATO invasion of Syria as the dangerous, sub-intelligent nonsense it is. The particular focus of Media Lens’ recent piece – “An Impeachable Offence” is – deservedly – the prize nincompoop George Monbiot, who shall forever be remembered for declaiming in a cringeworthy tweet “Do those who still insist Syrian govt didn’t drop chemical weapons have any idea how much evidence they are denying?” – and then linking to a Medium article citing Eliot Higgins, aka “Brown Moses”, ex-admin for an underwear firm, as the source of incontrovertible proof! Do those who still insist Syrian govt didn't drop chemical weapons have any idea how much evidence they are denying? https://t.co/wb6GawR8KI — GeorgeMonbiot (@GeorgeMonbiot) April 13, 2017 (Note to George: don’t skim read before going public). But in case Monbiot doesn’t yet realise the depths of foolishness he has plumbed, Medla Lens reminds him and us: In a 2014 letter to the London Review of Books, …

Sun ‘exposes racism in Russia’ with video of nazi Ukrainian football fans

The White Boys Club fan group of Ukraine’s Dynamo Kiev football team. © Ultras Dynamo .Kyiv TV / YouTube RT reports: It appears the UK tabloid, The Sun, needs a lesson in geography after it posted a video of controversial Ukrainian football fan group White Boys Club, who wear KKK capes, and paint swastikas on their clothes under the title ‘Racism in Russia’.  The video was an edited version of a clip posted on YouTube, which shows Ukrainian ultras – hardcore fans of Dynamo Kiev – putting on a visual display during a home match against their biggest rivals, another Ukrainian team, Shakhtar Donetsk last week. Despite being incorrect, the caption was not removed from the website for several hours. It is not clear whether this was an innocent geographical error on the part of The Sun, which has been running a campaign warning of hooliganism at next year’s World Cup in Russia. An accompanying article about the display also made no mention of the fact that the events were taking place in Ukraine. Behind …

BBC R4’s “nostalgia-driven, rose-tinted hypnosis” hides most blatant propaganda on airwaves

Radio 4 is the only aspirational talk-radio station on British airwaves and the second most popular radio station in the UK. Many who disavow and distrust the BBC TV news are inclined to view R4 in a more forgiving light, as essentially benign. As an ever-increasing number of people switch off BBC News programs, Radio 4 audience size is actually increasing. Its millions of listeners are invited to tune-in and zone out to the reassuring sounds of a BBC of yesteryear.