All posts tagged: The Guardian

#blamePutin continues to be the media’s dominant hashtag

by VT The decline of the falsely self-described “quality” media outlet The Guardian/Observer into a deranged fake news site pushing anti-Russian hate propaganda continues apace. Take a look at this gem: The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, has accused prominent British businessman Bill Browder of being a “serial killer” – the latest extraordinary attempt by the Kremlin to frame one of its most high-profile public enemies. But Putin has not been reported anywhere else as making any recent statement about Browder whatever, and the Observer article makes no further mention of Putin’s supposed utterance or the circumstances in which it was supposedly made. As the rest of the article makes clear, the suspicions against Browder were actually voiced by Russian police investigators and not by Putin at all. The Observer fabricated a direct quote from the Russian president for their propaganda purposes without any regard to basic journalistic standards. They wanted to blame Putin personally for the suspicions of some Russian investigators, so they just invented an imaginary statement from him so they could conveniently do …

Monbiot, Syria and Universalism

I’m worried about George. An admirer of many years standing of his excellent columns charting what John Smith’s even more excellent Imperialism in the Twenty-First Century refers to as “capitalism’s destruction of nature”, I’m dismayed both by his stance on Syria and manner of defending it. His latest Guardian piece, yesterday – A lesson from Syria: it’s crucial not to fuel far-right conspiracy theories – is depressingly typical. The man who writes with such clarity, such evidence based reason, on the ties between environmental recklessness and big money repeatedly shows himself prepared to suspend his critical faculties – while projecting that very sin on his opponents – when it comes to Syria and the Assad ‘regime’.

Catalan Independence and Media Hypocrisy

1.3 million people marched in the streets of Barcelona on the 11th of November. They were protesting the arrest of Catalonian MPs and other officials. The charges? Sedition. The Catalan independence referendum was held peacefully and fairly. On the day votes were cast riot police broke up crowds and raided polling stations. People were injured trying to vote. To no one’s surprise, the people of Catalonia voted AGAINST the people hitting them with sticks for wanting to be free. The Spanish government dissolved Catalonia’s local government and had MPs seized. The ex-President of Catalonia fled to Belgium. He has since been handed over to the Spanish government. 1.3 million people marched against this. That’s a one, a three, and five zeroes. The Spanish press didn’t cover it. But fortunately, for now, people can upload reality to twitter. Watch this video of last nights protest of around a million people calling for Spain to release Catalan political prisoners. Then follow this link to see how this vast crowd was depicted on the front pages of Spain's …

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.

“Conspiracies don’t happen….here.”

The US alphabet agencies recently released some formerly classified files on JFK. There’s nothing much in them, because well…why would there be? Supposing the CIA were complicit, who’s going to release, 50 years after the event, the evidence of their own coup? We haven’t covered it here, at OffG, because it doesn’t really need any attention. It’s a charity dump, a distraction. It allows Trump to look like he’s combating the Deep State, when in fact he’s firmly on the leash. That the CIA or FBI didn’t suddenly produce proof of their complicity in JFK’s assassination is not evidence of anything. Jonathan Freedland, writing one of his toxic editorials in The Guardian, begs to differ.

Why no-one talks about how “nice” Hillary Clinton is…

Over 11 months after her (catastrophically bad) loss in the Presidential election, the Guardian is still gamely waving Hillary Clinton’s battle standard. Apparently Clinton is currently doing the press circuit in the UK to promote her book “What Happened”, culminating in a hard-hitting political interview….on the Graham Norton Show. Zoe Williams, Guardian-columnist and leading candidate for shallowest person in the world, watched this interview and decided to ask the hard question: Why does nobody mention that Hillary Clinton is perfectly nice? The comments on said article went into great detail about how nice Clinton is. That’s why they were moderated to oblivion and closed after just a few hours. So, since The Guardian doesn’t want answers to Ms Williams’ question BTL, we’ll post them here, above the line. That’s what we’re for, after all. In brief, no one talks about how nice Hillary Clinton is…because she isn’t. She’s a liar and a war criminal. That’s not a debate or an opinion, those are proven facts. But, while this answer is complete, it’s hardly a fair …

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 …

Guardian Plugs War Criminal’s Book

by Kit Nobody should be surprised to learn that Alistair Campbell, the former Blair PR guru, suffers from psychological problems. Obviously, lacking empathy to the extent that you can start an illegal war with a peaceful country, for the lone purpose of enriching corporate interests, would be a red flag to any psychiatrist worth his salt. Even supposing you weren’t entirely psychopathic beforehand, the associated guilt-rotting of the soul, after the fact, would surely be enough to drive one mad. Just look at Blair. Look at his mummified, rictus grin and tell me that’s not a man whose evil has stained his face. No, no one is surprised that Alistair Campbell has mental problems. And, sadly, no one is surprised that the Guardian gives him column inches – not just to whine about the stress involved in coordinating (among other things) mass-murder – but also to plug his book. I will not name it or link to it here, it doesn’t deserve the clicks. In any right-thinking society, this man would be in prison for …

Amazon Censor Bad Reviews of Hillary Clinton’s New Book

Hillary Clinton’s book “What Happened”, a memoir of a fairly disastrous and ridiculously expensive Presidential campaign, went on sale a few days ago. Within hours it had over 1500 reviews on Amazon, many of them very, very negative. Amazon responded by deleting over 900 of them. 95% of those left are 5 star reviews. Zero Hedge have a great selection of screengrabs showing the progression. Putting aside the questions of corruption and corporate censorship, this is not new ground for Clinton’s camp, or for power structures in general. During the early stages of the Ukrainian coup in 2014, many mainstream news outlets (and especially the Guardian) responding to dissention in the comments by deleting swaths of them. That policy is the very reason this website exists. During the Presidential election the press was filled to the brim with babble, that never once touched on some important issues. American TV networks cut-off people mid-interview for saying the wrong thing. Three. Separate. Times. The media completely denied Clinton was sick, deriding it as a “conspiracy theory”, until …

The West Just Might Be Giving Up On Syrian Regime Change At Last

In the Syrian city of Deir Ezzor, sieged by ISIS, residents watch a speech by president Assad projected on a wall. Caitlin Johnstone in Medium: The Guardian has published a new article titled “Victory for Assad looks increasingly likely as world loses interest in Syria”, which is just as significant for what it says as for who is saying it. The Guardian has long been one of the most virulent promulgators of establishment lies about the Syrian government, giving extensive coverage to the transparent Bana Alabed psy-op, the western-instituted propaganda outlet known as the White Helmets, as well as advancing establishment narratives about Aleppo and Assad and many other blatant falsehoods. And indeed the article itself does a good job of retaining that vintage Guardian propaganda feel, portraying the failure to unseat Bashar al-Assad as something unfortunate and talking about poor refugees who are afraid to return home now that regime change is looking unlikely. But it also describes how the US, UK, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Turkey and other nations have been coming to terms with …

20 Years On: Princess Diana’s Death

Today marks the twentieth anniversary of the death of Princess Diana. For the past week or so Diana (The Peoples’ Princess TM) has been in every paper, on every channel. The BBC has a saccharine fluff piece, shallow as a puddle. The Daily Mail goes one step further into the absurd, publicising a “what if” novel, offering a version of reality where Diana survived. In the Guardian, Jonathan Freedland descends into self-parody by somehow contriving to use Diana’s anniversary to whine about Brexit (again), whilst Matthew D’Ancona makes the argument that maybe public emotion is bad and should be ignored. Hillary Mantel writes thousands of words about a person that never really existed, none of them really mean anything. Nobody, anywhere in the press, comes close to saying anything important. Nobody tries to tell the truth. I don’t know what happened the night Princess Diana died in a car accident, along with her lover and her driver – nobody knows. It could have been an accident, it could have been something worse. But there are …

How Jeremy Hammond Missed the Bigger Picture on Cyberterrorism

by Carla, therightsideoftruth.com For years, cyberterrorism has been on the periphery of our vision. While most know what the phrase means, the alarm surrounding the issue is minimal. On the other hand, freedom of speech and the right to an uncensored internet has become an increasingly common rhetoric in most alternative media channels. Guardian writer, Jeremy Hammond, spearheaded this exact opinion in an article last year. After Sony had fallen victim to North Korea-based hackers, he presented a view that shunned any repercussive fear. His theory: government officials are exaggerating the threat for their own financial gain. As is common in the MSM, his article grossly oversimplifies the topic. Cyberterrorism vs. Cybercrime Before even discussing the potential threat, it’s important to correctly identify what we mean by cyberterrorism, as opposed to cybercrime. Hammond, clearly unable to make the distinction, stated: Despite the apocalyptic hype, the Sony hack was not fundamentally different from any other high-profile breach in recent years.” While it is true the Sony hack presented itself like many other well-known infiltrations, the essential …

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 …

“Is free-speech really worth all this hassle?” – Gaby Hinsliff

by Kit I’ve never written a response to a Gaby Hinsliff column before. I’ve never felt the need. In much the same way that I’ve never written an online review of sliced bread or an essay about cardboard. It’s…there, I suppose, and it does a job, but it’s hardly worth getting excited about. First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. Mahatma Gandhi The Manchester bombing was “let happen” by MI5 because of the Conservative party’s disastrous dip in the polls. That was the theory tweeted by Rufus Hound, a comedian. As theories go, and it is still just a theory at this early stage, it’s not at all outlandish. History is full of precedents of power structures making people believe they are under threat in order to secure their position. As Hound succinctly put it, #Reichstagfire. The bombing, whether real or staged or allowed to happen or planned by MI5, will allow May to talk about strength and stability some more, allow the Tory’s to attack …

Graun celebrates Macron’s avowal to despoil working people, wreck infrastructure & enrich banking class

by Catte Macron is more Obama than Obama. More Blair than Blair. A creation, groomed and glossed for this “spontaneous” bid for power by the banking class he unashamedly represents. The Guardian unsurprisingly has numerous pieces (comments-disallowed) pushing this glibly smiling drone as the Saviour of France. Here’s an example to give you a flavour. All predictable and barely worth discussion. But one of the pieces has a little blue sidebar summarising their darling’s policies and position, which so completely encapsulates the destruction of meaning in political language we are currently witnessing that it should be noted. Here is a screen cap: You see, the Guardian defines itself as a “centrist/liberal Left” outlet, so, of course it supports “liberal Left” polices. How does it do this and still be the paper of record for Wall Street and the neocons? Easy. It just plays Humpty Dumpty and redefines what words actually mean. Here is what “centrist/liberal Left”, as encapsulated by Macron’s policies, now means for the Graun and the class it represents: 1) ”REMAKE THE FAILED …

Why did the American Military take precautions to prevent “fanciful” impossibilities?

by Kit Late last night, The Pentagon stated that their attack on the Syrian Government air-base near Homs was not targeting the regime’s supposed chemical weapon stocks. Despite “all the signs” pointing to Assad’s guilt, and it being “very likely” that this base is where the gas attack originated…no efforts were made to destroy any chemical weapons. At all. The Pentagon’s official statement says: The strike was a proportional response to Assad’s heinous act. Shayrat Airfield was used to store chemical weapons and Syrian air forces. The U.S. intelligence community assesses that aircraft from Shayrat conducted the chemical weapons attack on April 4. And that the attack… …was intended to deter the regime from using chemical weapons again.” But the targets were limited to: …aircraft, hardened aircraft shelters, petroleum and logistical storage, ammunition supply bunkers, air defense systems, and radars. So they “know” where the chemical weapons are. And they “know” Assad used them on civilians and (for all they know) may well do so again. So why not target and destroy these weapons? Wouldn’t …

BBC redacts article on Idlib to hide unwelcome facts

The push for “action” following the alleged chemical attack in Idlib, Syria is reaching fever pitch. Indeed, it may already have had disastrous consequences. The spokespeople for power that are the Western press consider the case against the Assad regime air-tight. Absent any forensic, or even circumstantial, evidence the mainstream media have resorted to simple arguments from authority looks of bewilderment. The trouble is “authority” doesn’t seem have any cohesion in this matter – so the press have carefully chosen who they will listen to…and who they will remove from their websites. Col. Hamish de Bretton-Gordon is the favored voice of “reason” on these matters, he has dismissed any idea other than a deliberate attack by the Syrian government as “fanciful”. And has been cited everywhere from Channel 4, to the Daily Mail to the Guardian, to the BBC. He is universally credited as a “chemical weapons expert” who works as the director of “Medics Under Fire”….but that’s not his only job, just his most recent. He was originally in the British army, filling an …

Idlib chemical attack: A sign no change of policy is on the horizon

The alleged chemical attack, reported yesterday, is the latest in a series of atrocities notionally carried out by the Syrian government (“The Regime”, in the partisan parlance of the press). There has not been time, as yet, to fully examine and analyse all the evidence – the claims and counter claims, the photographs and videos – but it would be a massive mistake to view it in a vacuum.