All posts tagged: Piers Robinson

Scrutinising the media: Fake news, censorship, and war

This coming event couldn’t be more relevant right now or closer to our own primary area of concern, and as an added bonus Piers Robinson, one of our much-esteemed contributing authors, will be speaking there – so go along if you can. Visit the website HERE Sun 4 November 2018 13:00 – 17:00 GMT This event will engage the public in discussion and debate about journalistic objectivity in traditional and social media. The aim is to raise public awareness of the techniques used by the media in order to condition public opinion, particularly with respect to war, so that citizens might make better informed judgments about the news they consume. The event will be centred on the topical concept of ‘fake news’ and will explore how that concept is being used to legitimise censorship. Attention will be drawn to the online censorship campaign currently being waged by Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Wikipedia. The media’s role in legitimising US/UK military intervention in Syria will be explored, as will attempts by mainstream news sources to close down …

Book Reviews: 9/11 Unmasked

Every year, at about this time, OffGuardian likes to cover the anniversary of 9/11, the most important “catalysing event” in modern history. And this year is no different. As part of this coverage, and in recognition of our willingness to discuss this often-controversial topic, we were invited to review 9/11 Unmasked, a new book from David Ray Griffin and Elizabeth Woodworth, focusing on the discrepancies in the official account of that fateful day 17 years ago. We reached out to trusted regular contributors and friends of the site based on their honesty, integrity and potentially contrasting points of view. The results are three different reviews, illustrating an interesting cross-section of opinions and experiences. Philip Roddis Two years ago, on the fifteenth anniversary of 9/11, OffGuardian ran my review of Dylan Avery’s Loose Change. Except it wasn’t a review but a pouring of vitriol on the film’s central assertion that the events of September 11, 2001 were an inside job. Reception below the line was hostile. But among the cat-calls were voices I could not ignore: …

9/11 Unmasked by David Ray Griffin and Elizabeth Woodworth: A Review

Piers Robinson Although not a topic for polite conversation, nor a widely recognized ‘acceptable’ issue for mainstream academics and journalists, the issue of 9/11 and the multiple questions that persist with respect to this transformative event continue to bubble under the surface. 9/11 ushered in the global ‘war on terror’, shaping the geo-political agenda of Western governments for almost two decades now and having a deleterious impact on civil liberties across Western liberal democratic states. Torture has been used as part of official policy and there is bulk data collection and surveillance of entire populations. In recent years, further information has come into the public domain, via the UK Chilcot report regarding the formative stages of the post 9/11 ‘war on terror’: Within days of 9/11 having occurred a British embassy cable reported that ‘the “regime-change hawks” in Washington are arguing that a coalition put together for one purpose (against international terrorism) could be used to clear up other problems in the region’; Chilcot also published a Bush-Blair communication from the aftermath of 9/11 which …

Douma: Part 1 — Deception in Plain Sight

by Media Lens, April 25, 2018 UK corporate media are under a curious kind of military occupation. Almost all print and broadcast media now employ a number of reporters and commentators who are relentless and determined warmongers. Despite the long, unarguable history of US-UK lying on war, and the catastrophic results, these journalists instantly confirm the veracity of atrocity claims made against Official Enemies, while having little or nothing to say about the proven crimes of the US, UK, Israel and their allies. They shriek with a level of moral outrage from which their own government is forever spared. They laud even the most obviously biased, tinpot sources blaming the ‘Enemy’, while dismissing out of hand the best scientific researchers, investigative journalists and academic sceptics who disagree. Anyone who challenges this strange bias is branded a ‘denier’, ‘pro-Saddam’, ‘pro-Gaddafi, ‘pro-Assad’. Above all, one robotically repeated word is generated again and again: ‘Apologist… Apologist… Apologist’. Claims of a chemical weapons attack on Douma, Syria on April 7, offered yet another textbook example of this reflexive warmongering. …

The authoritarians who silence Syria questions

by Jonathan Cook I am loath to draw more attention to the kind of idiocy that passes for informed comment nowadays from academics and mainstream journalists. Recently I lambasted Prof Richard Carver for his arguments against BDS that should have gained him an F for logic in any high school exam. Now we have to endure Brian Whitaker, the Guardian’s former Middle East editor, using every ploy in the misdirection and circular logic playbook to discredit those who commit thought crimes on Syria, by raising questions both about what is really happening there and about whether we can trust the corporate media consensus banging the regime-change drum. Whitaker’s arguments and assumptions may be preposterous but sadly, like Carver’s, they are to be found everywhere in the mainstream – they have become so commonplace through repetition that they have gained a kind of implicit credibility. So let’s unpack what Whitaker and his ilk are claiming. Whitaker’s latest outburst is directed against the impudence of a handful of British academics, including experts in the study of propaganda, …

Request to Guardian for response & right of reply to Solon White Helmets article

Following are two letters sent to the Guardian by the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media in response to an article titled How Syria’s White Helmets became victims of an online propaganda machine which appeared on December 18. The article claims the White Helmets have become victims of ‘Russian propaganda’. The letters express concern over the factual accuracy of the article and deplore the refusal of right of reply to those attacked in the piece. The letters were sent on December 23 and January 5 respectively. As of Jan 13 no reply has been received to either. Originally at Tim Hayward’s blog. From the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media: Seeking Truth About White Helmets In Syria The recent Guardian article by Olivia Solon attacks those investigating and questioning the role of the White Helmets in Syria and attributes all such questioning to Russian propaganda, conspiracy theorizing and deliberate disinformation. The article does little, however, to address the legitimate questions which have been raised about the nature of the White Helmets and their …

How anyone who questions the White Helmets narrative became victims of the Guardian propaganda machine

the Guardian recently published an article by Olivia Solonclaiming criticism of the White Helmets in Syria was a disinformation program ‘propagated online by a network of anti-imperialist activists, conspiracy theorists and trolls with the support of the Russian government.’ The Guardian, in contravention of proper journalism, refuse a right of reply to people libelled in this article.