About five years ago I made a comparison between the CCTV anchor Yang Rui and Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly. Ultimately, the conclusion was that “It is time to pick up the remote control, time to think, and time to stop listening to the drivel that the “Yangs” and “Bills” spout and when we stop listening to them, perhaps, we will stop listening to their political masters.” However, what happens when the propaganda is a little bit more subtle than the garbage spouted by Yang and Bill?
Anyway, there was me watching the host of RT’s CrossTalk, Peter Lavelle, gang up on one of his guests yesterday and it soon became obvious that not only is Lavelle very much a mouthpiece for the Kremlin, but that there is also something to be said for the conclusion reached by Oliver Bullough in his New Statesman article “Inside Russia Today: counterweight to the mainstream media, or Putin’s mouthpiece?“ last May, when he wrote that Putin “…… funds RT to persuade everyone else that their own countries are no better (than Russia).”
Nevertheless, should that stop us at least looking at the other side of the story, and should it prevent us wanting to puke at the hypocritical propaganda that is disseminated by the mainstream media in the west? It shouldn’t, of course, for, if it were to do either, we would be entering that Orwellian world where 2+2=5. As it is, we have not yet entered that world and that is why we might be grateful for articles such as the one from Tariq Ali in yesterday’s “Guardian”. In discussing “how Vladimir Putin became evil”, Mr Ali writes:
“The Crimean affair led to barely any loss of life, and the population clearly wanted to be part of Russia. The White House’s reaction has been the opposite of its reaction to Chechnya. Why? Because Putin, unlike Yeltsin, is refusing to play ball any more on the things that matter such as Nato expansion, sanctions on Iran, Syria etc. As a result, he has become evil incarnate.”
Yes, Mr Lavelle, might be another Yang or Bill, but the West did not care one jot about the “rape, torture, homeless refugees and tens of thousands dead” in Chechnya, the hypocrisy is disgusting and the ambitions criminal, even if the man in Moscow is most certainly not Mr Nice Guy.