IS THE MSM REALITY ON UKRAINE A TOTAL DISTORTION OF THE TRUTH? IF SO, WHY?
There is a particular aspect of the joined-up foreign policy of what some describe as the ‘collective west’ that I find particularly fascinating. It is the on-off switch, or perhaps better said, the ‘propaganda tap’ that has only two conditions depending on western political needs at any particular time.
The case of Volodymyr Zelenskyy featured in the image above is a case in point. At the time the Guardian newspaper printed the story featured in the image above (October 2021) he was still to some degree seeming to advocate a peaceful resolution to the crisis in eastern Ukraine. Now that he is at war he has become a “hero” to virtually all western mainstream media.
In similar fashion India, once seen as in a reasonably close relationship with the USA (though keeping an unaligned position overall) is now subject to increasing verbal attacks by the USA as a result of its unwillingness to cut ties with, or criticise Russia.
It is almost as if, to use yet a third metaphor, that the USA, its allies and proxies have a gun that swivels constantly in 360 degrees worldwide along with a hose that distributes largesse. Where the gun or hose rests depends solely on whether the interests of the USA are being fulfilled, or not.
Western mass media acts, almost universally and constantly on this basis also. The newspaper featured above, the UK’s ‘Guardian’, was once a stalwart critic of western (particularly U.S.) foreign policy that it saw as detrimental, underhand or based on a neoconservative/warmongering agenda. This flipped radically to the opposite pole soon after certain laptops belonging to Edward Snowden were smashed by government agents in their office basement. What additional threats were communicated at that time are not known, however the paper changed its stance almost immediately.
Since the basement incident the Guardian has become one of the most loyal stenographers of western political elite sentiment, talking points and narratives. The gun/hose syndrome was evident.
A very similar transformation occurred in regard to the BBC in respect of their news broadcasting. Time was the BBC produced some hard-hitting television revealing the iniquities of western foreign policy decisions. No more. Not since the Andrew Gilligan affair when the then Labour Party government took the BBC to court for allowing Gilligan to say that it was “sexing up” reports on Iraq to enable it to go to war against it. From that time on the BBC too has been a faithful stenographer for whatever western state narratives are seen to be required. Currently it has abandoned all pretence regarding impartiality on the situation in Ukraine and is jingoistic in the extreme and fervently anti-Russian.
The on-off switch/propaganda tap/gun and hose system of achieving obedience to the will of western states would appear to be working extremely effectively and increasingly so.
The arrival of cancel culture has added a new layer of effectiveness and acceptability to this weapon. Western states need only telegraph their acceptance or annoyance concerning this or that geopolitical events for their channels of communication to swing into action.
War mode is the overall and over-arching mentality that makes full use of the hiring syndrome Noam Chomsky pointed out to a BBC interviewer many years ago. The video of that encounter is well worth watching as it provides a useful insight into another way that idealistic beginning journalists become state stenographers over time… and why the West has the kind of mass media we experience daily now.
We are told that the West is the “Free World”, the upholder of free speech, openness and absence of censorship… the “open society” where all views are able to be aired and discussed. But how true are these virtues today in the western world and if we are being real about it, isn’t the swivelling gun and hose tactic much more prevalent and demanding in how western populations think, feel, imbibe “information” and support causes… or, in the case of nations promoting a third world war, completely fail to do so?