All posts tagged: propaganda

RussiaDidIt: cheap meddling, closet Marxists and racial tensions

Are you a western journalist or analyst with an issue you cannot explain? Do your symptoms include an unwillingness to learn anything from history and an unconditional embrace of western exceptionalism? Then we have just the thing for you: RussiaDidIt! Taken in the appropriate dosage, RussiaDidIt can be used for just any issue, small and large, old and new, near and far. Call your local US embassy or EU office and order your RussiaDidIt talking points. Side effects may include total paranoia, loss of credibility and a desire to wear the EU flag as a cape.

The problem with modern “journalism” summed up in one story

by Kit That a protest Facebook/twitter account focusing on the mistreatment of black people by American police was actually a fake account run by Russians to make the US look bad and spread division in the West…is one hell of a claim. If you were to make it, you’d probably be expected to supply evidence to back up your accusation. That’s only reasonable. Well, CNN don’t feel the need. Two days ago they reported this story verbatim, here. Under the headline: Exclusive: Fake black activist accounts linked to Russian government Now, the headline doesn’t say HOW these accounts were linked to Russia, or indeed who linked them. But that’s OK, because neither does the body of the text. There’s not a single link, source or piece of evidence cited at all. The only basis for the claim is: two sources with knowledge of the matter told CNN That’s it. In total. They never say who these two sources are (leaving the very real possibility they don’t even exist), they never say what their supposed “knowledge …

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.

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 …

Iraqi WMDs Anyone? Washington Post Makes Unfounded Claims Of Iranian Supplies To Insurgencies

from Moon of Alabama The Washington Post falls back into its 2005 mode of blaming Iran for the capabilities of a local insurgency. This time it is not Iraq where Iran is allegedly providing to insurgents, but Bahrain. Old and debunked claims are hauled up and propaganda from the U.S. proxy Sunni dictatorship is cited as “evidence”. It is a top-right front-page story in the Sunday edition and thereby “important”. It is also fake news. The headline: U.S. increasingly sees Iran’s hand in the arming of Bahraini militants. The core: The report, a copy of which was shown to The Washington Post, partly explains the growing unease among some Western intelligence officials over tiny Bahrain, a stalwart U.S. ally in the Persian Gulf and home to the Navy’s Fifth Fleet. Six years after the start of a peaceful Shiite protest movement against the country’s Sunni-led government, U.S. and European analysts now see an increasingly grave threat emerging on the margins of the uprising: heavily armed militant cells supplied and funded, officials say, by Iran. The …

On Propaganda and Bias: An open-letter to the Royal Academy

Mr Christopher LeBrun, President Mr Charles Saumarez Smith, Secretary and Chief Executive Mr Tim Marlow, Director of Artistic Programmes Royal Academy of Arts, London 28 March 2017 Dear Sirs, I am writing to you to express my disappointment at the curatorial handling of the exhibition Revolution: Russian Art 1917-1932 currently on display at the RA. Whilst I am not an art historian or an expert in Russian art of the period, it is well known (and apparent just looking at the pieces on display at the RA) that the years covered by the exhibition represent a decisive and hugely fruitful moment in the development of Russian and European Modernism in which artists who came from a figurative tradition coexisted with avant-garde currents like the Russian Futurists or, later, the Constructivists, along with visionary figures like Kasimir Malevich, Wassily Kandinsky, El Lissitzky and others (whom you reference in the exhibition), besides, of course, developments in photography, theatre, dance, music and cinema. For this reason, I was incredibly excited to visit the RA exhibition, anticipating a serious, …

Fake News: The Unravelling of US Empire From Within

by Prof. John McMurtry, via Global Research Setting the Stage of the Press-President War US ruling ideology and Washington power have become unstuck as never before. A war of opposing certitudes and denunciations is waged day to day between the long-ruling US corporate media and the White House. Both continuously proclaim ringing recriminations of the other’s ‘fake news’. Over months they both portray each other as malevolent liars. US bully pulpits are now beyond show disagreements and successful media inquisitions of the past. Slanderous accusations long confined to vilifying the designated Enemy have crept into accusations of the President himself. ‘The Russians are coming’ is returning as the final recourse of smear to stop deviations from the global program of hugely profitable enemy hate and perpetual preparations for foreign war. The ruling big lies of the US money party and corporate globalization have divided into opposing camps. The Press and the President denounce each other non-stop on the public stage, while US dark state agents take sides behind the scenes. Fake news is the medium …

Fake news about Venezuela: a simple recipe

by Ricardo Vaz, from InvestigAction “Journalists” who want to write fake news about Venezuela, or about any other country or group that dares to stand up to US imperialism, only need to follow this simple recipe: Choose one or more countries/groups opposed to US imperialism If available, have a former official, now being paid by the US government, make the accusations Season well with doses of “war on terror” and/or “war on drugs” Sprinkle with opinions of “experts” who work in DC think tanks or US-funded NGOs While this looks like a very unsavoury mix, the results last very long and can be reheated with no problems. This recipe has been used and re-used plenty of times, either by US officials to justify policies or by media outlets. But given how the media critically accepts everything when it comes to foreign policy, there is hardly a distinction to be made here. A classical example were the fabricated connections between Chávez/Venezuela and al-Qaeda. Other variants involve dealings with the FARC (1), Mexican cartels, and the favourite …

The Praetorian Bodyguards (Of the Empire’s Liars)

by Greg Maybury Brief:The response from the mainstream media to Wikileaks revelations of CIA surveillance and hacking – against the backdrop of the MSM and Beltway fuelled brouhaha over fake news, alleged Russian spying and interference in U.S elections, and general animus towards Moscow – is further evidence the Fourth Estate is irretrievably beholden to the amorphous Deep State and the ruling classes du jour. It in turn underscores the MSM’s ever present grip on the broader American political psyche. That it was ever thus has been obvious for decades to all but the most deluded afficionados of life, liberty, democracy, privacy, freedom, the rule of law, the pursuit of happiness, and the American way. With this in mind, it’s time to take a deep breath for an even deeper dive into the cess-pool that is the collective press-pool. The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function. F Scott Fitzgerald, 1936 So far as I can …

Amnesty International Admits Syrian “Saydnaya” Report Fabricated Entirely in UK

Amnesty International’s 48 page report titled, “Syria: Human Slaughterhouse: Mass Hangings and Extermination at Saydnaya Prison, Syria,” boasts bold claims. However, even at a cursory glance, before even reading the full body of the report, under a section titled, “Methodology,” Amnesty International admits it has no physical evidence whatsoever to substantiate what are admittedly only the testimony of alleged inmates and former workers at the prison, as well as figures within Syria’s opposition.

Libyan Labels: a journey through the Guardian’s coverage of the Libyan disaster

In this analysis we examine Libya’s recent history looking through the eyes of the Guardian, the flagship of liberal western outlets, and its reporting. As with most other western media, the Guardian was an enthusiastic supporter of the NATO intervention that overthrew Gaddafi and threw the country into the disaster that we are about to describe. Faithful to western interests then, the Guardian remains faithful afterwards as well. But imperial designs are laden with contradictions and sometimes drastically change course, but the Guardian dutifully follows.

This week the issue is not Trump. It is ourselves.

by John Pilger On the day President Trump is inaugurated, thousands of writers in the United States will express their indignation. “In order for us to heal and move forward…”, say Writers Resist, “we wish to bypass direct political discourse, in favour of an inspired focus on the future, and how we, as writers, can be a unifying force for the protection of democracy.” And: “We urge local organizers and speakers to avoid using the names of politicians or adopting ‘anti’ language as the focus for their Writers Resist event. It’s important to ensure that nonprofit organizations, which are prohibited from political campaigning, will feel confident participating in and sponsoring these events.” Thus, real protest is to be avoided, for it is not tax exempt. Compare such drivel with the declarations of the Congress of American Writers, held at Carnegie Hall, New York, in 1935, and again two years later. They were electric events, with writers discussing how they could confront ominous events in Abyssinia, China and Spain. Telegrams from Thomas Mann, C Day Lewis, …

The Entire World is “Fake News”

by Andre Vltchek Imperialist demagogues, as well as religious fanatics, are known to live in their grotesque realities. They erect huge sand castles, invent mascots, and bombard the public relentlessly with self-promoting messages. Those who refuse to listen and believe, those who dare to doubt and resist, are sidelined, starved to death, humiliated or simply liquidated. Western religions and European/North American brutal colonialist practices are intertwined culturally. Hand in hand, for centuries, they have been destroying our Planet, from corner to corner, on all continents and even on the high seas. All conquests, all genocides, all plunders have been eternally rationalized, painstakingly justified. Grand bogus concepts of charity, of ‘altruism’ have been erected. Subjugated nations have always been ruined in the name of some higher principles, in order to save them from themselves. For centuries, the West has portrayed itself as a sacrificial lamb, as a hand chosen by some divine power, as the greatest civilization that is continuously and altruistically liberating the world. In the West, scribblers and ‘scholars’ have been paid to soften …

Russian Spies Behind Every Christmas Tree

by David William Pear The main stream propaganda media has been on an anti-Putin, anti-Russian propaganda binge for years, and the Guardian is one of the leaders of the pack. One has to wonder if it has anything to do with the Guardian’s shady dealings with George Soros’ secretive Open Society Foundation. Soros makes a fortune from U.S. sponsored regime changes and financial disasters. A regime change in Russia could make him Billions of dollars. For years the Guardian was a captain of journalism in a sea of corporate monopoly media. No longer and many of its renowned journalists have abandoned ship or been thrown overboard. Their alleged crimes were mutiny against the establishment? The first storm at the Guardian came when award winning editor in chief Janine Gibson was forced to walk the plank (May 2015). Gibson was widely expected to become the Guardian’s Senior Editor. Instead Gibson was deep sixed after she navigated the Guardian through the treacherous course of revealing the Edward Snowden leaks. The Guardian was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for …

Spectator editor to RT: “We are in danger of being the boy who cried ‘Propaganda!’”

Screencap from the interview of The Spectator’s deputy editor, Freddie Gray, to RT […] Western mainstream media’s ‘McCarthian’ witch hunt for Russia’s influence on the media shuns objectivity in favor of hysteria – a dangerous reductionism that dumbs down the debate on information warfare, argues Spectator deputy editor Freddy Gray. There has recently been a proliferation of the ‘fake news’ narratives in the Western media, which shows no signs of dying down. The gist of these stories is essentially that false news stories have been planted by a foreign actor in order to influence the political affairs of another, and the consequent accusations asserting that the 2016 US presidential election was swayed in favor of Donald Trump by such alleged manipulation of the news by Russia has thrust the issue into the spotlight. A Washington Post article recently accused 200 US news sites of being “routine peddlers” of Russian propaganda. New Yorker magazine subsequently released an article entitled ‘The Propaganda about Russian Propaganda,’ which slammed the report as a total mess.Gray examines what this means for …

Rolling Stone: WaPo ‘fake news/Russian propaganda’ story is shameful and disgusting

  Matt Taibbi in Rolling Stone: Last week, a technology reporter for the Washington Post named Craig Timberg ran an incredible story. It has no analog that I can think of in modern times. Headlined “Russian propaganda effort helped spread ‘fake news’ during election, experts say,” the piece promotes the work of a shadowy group that smears some 200 alternative news outlets as either knowing or unwitting agents of a foreign power, including popular sites like Truthdig and Naked Capitalism. The thrust of Timberg’s astonishingly lazy report is that a Russian intelligence operation of some kind was behind the publication of a “hurricane” of false news reports during the election season, in particular stories harmful to Hillary Clinton. The piece referenced those 200 websites as “routine peddlers of Russian propaganda.” The piece relied on what it claimed were “two teams of independent researchers,” but the citing of a report by the longtime anticommunist Foreign Policy Research Institute was really window dressing. The meat of the story relied on a report by unnamed analysts from a …

Guardian plays Robin to MI5’s Batman

  Jonathan Cook, “an award-winning British journalist based in Nazareth, Israel”, writes in his eponymous blog: Today the Guardian offers decisive confirmation that it is only too willing to serve as an establishment mouthpiece. It proudly announces that it is the venue selected by Andrew Parker, the head of MI5, Britain’s FBI, to receive the agency’s first-ever newspaper interview [link]. If the Guardian were a proper independent newspaper, it would regard this interview as a stain. Instead it bills it as a front-page “exclusive”. Exclusively, the Guardian has been given the chance to regurgitate MI5’s propaganda – propaganda designed to help stoke a new Cold War with Russia. In fact, this is not an “interview” as the Guardian claims, for the simple reason that the paper’s two “interviewers” – one of them its deputy editor, Paul Johnson – have no basis on which to question the quality of the “classified” information they are being fed. Everything Parker tells them could have been guessed at without the interview: ● the Russians under Vladimir Putin are an …

Politics, Language and Power

by Frank Contemporary politics consists of the usual timeless formula of Machiavelli – rule by force and fraud – but with the current emphasis being on fraud Defenceless villages are bombarded from the air, their inhabitants driven out into the countryside, their cattle machine gunned, their huts set on fire with incendiary bullets: this is called pacification.” Politics and the English Language, 1946 There is a high probability that Russia will intervene in the Baltics to test NATO’s Article 5…” Anders Fogh Rasmussen, ex-head of NATO, now military and security adviser to Ukrainian Oligarch ruler Poroshenko, February 2015 It would be true to say that the language of politics and power is patently neither objective, nor particularly interested in the pursuit of truth. Quite the contrary in fact. If we take the above examples, the first is simply an attempt to mask what is an international war crime into a reasonable policy of intervention. All rather reminiscent of the language which evolved during the Indo-china wars, e.g. ‘we destroyed the village in order to save …

Larry King and Donald Trump Follow-up: The Guardian keeps on lying

Following our story regarding The Guardian’s coverage of Donald Trump’s interview with Larry King on RT, we feel the need to point out the increased dishonesty on this issue. From this article in The Guardian this morning [our emphasis]: Trump’s comments followed a series of embarrassing links to the Kremlin, including an appearance by Trump on a Russian state propaganda television channel, where Trump defended Putin and criticized US foreign policy. Trump’s campaign later said television personality Larry King had somehow tricked the candidate into accidentally appearing on the Russian channel The fact is that, in the interview (which you can watch in its entirety here), neither man mentions Putin’s name once, let alone “defends” him. Nobody who’d seen the brief interview (it’s only 9 minutes long) could possibly make that mistake. So either the Guardian writers/editors are publishing stories about videos they have not even bothered to watch, or they are simply straight lying to try to paint Trump as some kind of Russian spy. Either is ethically indefensible for a “proper” news outlet.

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.