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Journalists reporting on Ukraine - the good, the bad, and the ugly

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Journalists reporting on Ukraine - the good, the bad, and the ugly

Post by Nelson on Wed Aug 26, 2015 3:37 am

In the thread I propose to discuss the standards of English-language journalists who are working in, or visit Ukraine from time to time.
The trouble with most of the reporters writing about Ukraine - they are based in Moscow. And all too often give the Moscow position full weight.
Residency in Moscow - and retaining their residency documents must play a part in the way some of them slant their stories...



The dirty dozen include:

1. Marc Bennetts
British freelance. From Bristol. Moved to Russia in 1997. Married a Russian woman, Tanya Nevinskaya, https://vk.com/id7303022  and has a child, Masha. Wife, 30 odd, has a law degree, probably. Seems they live in Voronezh, but he gives "Moscow" as his place of abode.  Did work for RIA Novosti, the Russian propaganda machine, in his early days. Also translating, travel work. Less active recently. But -
Will somebody who has their close family in Russia write something critical of Putin?

2. Tom Burridge
Politics and Spanish, Bristol. For more see 24 posts' down. "The BBC makes me puke".

3. Oliver Carroll
For biography see post below. Mersey kid. Cantab., SSEES, late 30s.

4. Alec Luhn
University of Wisconsin-Madison Russian, history and journalism graduate. From Stoughton, Wis., living in Russia since June 2008.
Usually writes now for The Guardian. Based in Moscow.
Usually unbiased. Not bad interview with him here -
http://www.creeca.wisc.edu/enews/15april1.html

5. Euan MacDonald
Born in Glasgow. U of Edin. For full bio and more, see 22 posts' down.

6. Roland Oliphant
English. For biography see post about 20 down.

7. Tom Parfitt
.".correspondent in Moscow since 2002... joined the Guardian in 2005 after working initially for the Daily Telegraph. Before moving to Russia he completed an MA in politics at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies in London.[SSEES, UCL, same as Carroll.] He started his career ... in Norwich." 2016 with The Times. 14 years in Moscow - thus far.

8. Sarah Rainsford
For biography, see about 13 posts' down.

9. Noah Sneider
2009 graduate of Palo Alto High School, -  up-market area of San Fran., comes from a family of journalists. But he also describes himself as an artist.
His mother wrote for the Wall Street Journal; father was Moscow bureau chief for the Christian Science Monitor
Graduated from Pomona College in 2013, Russian and E Europe studies. Pomona - LA. San Bernadino Valley! Writing generally ok.

10. David L Stern
Brown University 86-90. 1991 started off at ABC. Maybe from Kansas? Freelance.
Went to Moscow 20 years' ago, BBC there for some time, also Caucasus and Central Asia correspondent for the FT. Now based in Kiev.
Not liked by the Russians, it appears. Here they frame him as a CIA agent who brought down Mh17. I kid you not.
http://english.pravda.ru/news/hotspots/29-07-2015/131517-boeing-0/

11. Shaun Walker
For bio, see about five posts' down. Mega-dodgy long time Moscow resident.

12. Christopher Miller
From Porland, Oregon, lovely area of the US. Miller -  Gresham High School and Portland State University before starting off as a journalist, some work for the WSJ, then joined the Peace Corps in 2010, and posted to Ukraine. And stayed. Currently working for the Kyiv Post and Mashable. Initial impression - somewhat naive, as you would expect, but also genuine.


Last edited by Nelson on Wed Apr 27, 2016 6:55 am; edited 20 times in total

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Carroll

Post by Nelson on Tue Sep 01, 2015 3:44 am

Oliver Carroll - biography
British. Merseyside? Freelance. Often in The Independent. Degree from Cambridge in Modern Languages, Masters in Politics from UCL-SSEES. Worked briefly at Wirral Brough Council before going to the Moscow Times in 2004. Age..37? guess. Set up Russian Esquire. Good knowledge of Ukraine. This on YT is not bad
http://www.newrepublic.com/article/117981/yulia-tymoshenko-why-ukraines-iron-lady-did-not-win-recent-elections
But he thinks the war against Russia has elements of a civil war. Don't agree. Even Strelkov said nothing would have happened if Russia hadn't gone in.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvQ3VnTIaB4
Carroll can alter things under pressure from Moscow - this from 2006 -
http://www.themoscowtimes.com/sitemap/free/2006/6/article/another-little-example-of-the-power-of-cartoons/204603.html

Carroll
Let us start with "the good".
This article - not easy to get the balance right.
Svoboda supporter throws grenade which kills a mobilized soldier aged 25.
You could write for ever about the Pravi Sector, fascists, Svoboda, nationalism gone mad in Ukraine, but Carroll here, in the Independent, seems to get the balance right to me.



====
This article from 02 September, 2015.

Ukraine crisis: Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk says nationalist protesters are worse than separatists after violence that left one dead
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/ukraine-crisis-prime-minister-says-nationalist-protesters-are-worse-than-the-separatists-following-violence-that-left-one-dead-10480308.html
Several had come prepared, dressed in masks and brandishing wooden sticks. At about 1pm, The Independent saw a group of men begin to assault policemen with sticks. A short while later, another small group broke through the substantial police cordon  and began throwing missiles – bottles, stones, bricks – at the police. Eventually, the missiles became Molotov cocktails and, it is believed, grenades or improvised explosive packages of some description.
There were several pools of blood around the south and west sides of the parliamentary building,

====
Live, clear reporting from the scene. Facts, quotes, and intelligent informed commentary.
Reports also from Oliphant and Walker, buddies in Moscow in the Guardian and Telegraph on the same story. But -they might as well be in HCMC.


Last edited by Nelson on Sat Dec 12, 2015 7:20 am; edited 4 times in total

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Russian army advanced T-72B3 tank was destroyed in Vosme Bereznia village before onslaught on Debaltseve – investigation. VIDEO

Post by Admin on Wed Sep 02, 2015 12:17 pm

One of the T-72B3 tanks flashed by Graham Phillips was destroyed in the village of Vosme Bereznia (vicinity of Debaltseve).

Censor.NET reports citing investigation by Mikhail Net.

Several Russian T-72B3 advanced main battle tanks got in to the shot during the filming of a propaganda video by British born Russian secret service agent Graham Phillips before the attack on the Ukrainian positions near Debaltseve.



censor.net.ua In Russian


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Phillips

Post by Nelson on Thu Sep 03, 2015 3:04 am

Graham W Phillips.
Also writes as Brandon Reed.
Difficult to know if he really comes under the category of "journalist", even in the Russian sense of the word.
That is why I have not included him in the list on the first posting.



In the black-blue shirt.

A little about his past here.
http://www.buzzfeed.com/maxseddon/how-a-british-blogger-became-an-unlikely-star-of-the-ukraine#.qbw41108O
Born in Nottingham. Moved to Scotland. Broughty Ferry and attended Eastern Primary School. Perth High School and Dundee University, 98-01, Philosophy and History.
Did he graduate? I can't find his name in the university list of graduates for 2001.... The Ru wiki says he graduated.  
Tried working as a stand-up comic. Play at the Edinburgh fringe. 10 years working in London. Office. Then to Ukraine. 2010 footie match - England. Decided to try his luck in Ukraine. Taught English. Bought flat in Odessa. Had Russian lessons there himself.
Drives a Rover 75, which - I think I have seen. You don't see many RHD Rover 75s with British plates in Ukraine. Supposedly he is banned from Ukraine.
Unemployed at the time of Maidan II. Visiting prostitutes, by his own admission. Got offer from RT to work in the Donbass. Never looked back. Aged about 36.
Listening to him, he absolutely spouts out the Russian propaganda - Ukraine - killing civilians. Fascists. Straight from the Kremlin songbook.
I can't work out whether
1. He is just incredibly naive and stupid, and impressionable, and was pushed the Russian position by people he studied Russian with in Odessa, or
2. He knows exactly what he is doing, and saw it as a good opportunity to make some money. A "western journalist" spouting the Kremlin line is gold-dust for Putin and his regime. Or.
3. He is mentally disturbed; not massively, but enough to affect his judgement and rational thinking. He seems, having read more about him now, to bear strong grudges against people. Just look at his play about Dundee. And organisations. He wrote 3 articles for the KP. But then he wrote a blog criticising their management. A blog he later deleted. He has written against the Ukrainian language. Another blog, which he also later deleted. He also got threatened with a lawsuit in a book he wrote and withdrew. Maybe something happened to him in Ukraine.
He seems to be a disturbed individual.

His current writings - twitter - pure hate towards Ukraine, pure propaganda. This from 2 days ago:
They are advising against all travel to Crimea and not Kiev, even though Nazis killed and maimed dozens yesterday in Kiev!
"Nazis"... not exactly unbiased journalism. That is for sure. But then one could not class him as a "journalist" in the normal sense of the word.

More on his university time. (used the name Brandon Reed when writing)
Comic found dead http://www.chortle.co.uk/news/2005/01/06/3/comic_found_dead
and performed a show at the 2000 Edinburgh Fringe called The Road From Dundee with fellow comic Graham Philips.
see also
A PRODUCTION for Edinburgh Fringe which slates Dundee has been criticised as doing untold damage to the city's reputation.
http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/12189485.Angels_unguarded_with_city_apos_s_reputation/
A celluloid pilgrimage: Brothers journey from Dundee to see 'RoboCop' location
http://old.post-gazette.com/magazine/20000907robocop1.asp
This is what ended his attempt at being a playwright... a scathing review in the Scotsman....2001 Edinburgh Review...
Rather Me Than You *
http://www.scotsman.com/news/rather-me-than-you-1-463193
Worse, the exit is on the tiny stage. Forcing the audience to be incarcerated for 70 long, long, minutes
Elsewhere - "not as pleasant as self-flagellation with a decaying fish". That must have hurt him. The theatre business can be very brutal.

Conclusion. - unbalanced. He conceals significant hate, and this manifests itself in his writing.
I think something happened to him in Ukraine. Or perhaps they told him at the KP that he couldn't hack it as a journalist. Who knows.
Absolute hate beyond any normal reason towards Ukraine. And this ability to hate and bear a grudge has shown itself several times at various crucial moments in his life.
To be blunt, I think he has a screw loose somewhere.
Good, bad, or ugly. ? Undoubtedly ugly.


Last edited by Nelson on Sat Dec 12, 2015 7:44 am; edited 3 times in total

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Whitmore

Post by Nelson on Fri Sep 04, 2015 8:31 am

Brian Whitmore.  I have not come across on a regular basis. A few articles in the KP, and more with rferl. He is becoming popular now as a commentator on Ukrainian affairs. This article for me is excellent:



A Soft Annexation In Donbas   [Article dated yesterday, 03 September 2015]
http://www.rferl.org/content/a-soft-annexation-in-donbas/27225009.html
....Moscow doesn't want the separatist territories separated from the rest of Ukraine, but integrated into it. The Kremlin wants Kyiv to carry the burden of reconstructing the region, and it wants Moscow's proxies to act as a fifth column to disrupt Kyiv's westward drive.
But the authorities in Kyiv aren't letting this happen.


You need to read the article to appeciate it. Well thought out, and a clever logical flow to it.
I spent several years studying at university in America, and was often shocked by some students' amazing lack of knowledge of the world beyond Long Island.
But Whitmore has clearly travelled widely, and spent a long time outside of his home country, gaining insight and an original perspective on things.

Who is he?
Senior Correspondent with rferl based in Prague, probably the most beautiful city in the world - my opinion. He knows where to live!
Unlike most journalists, he is open about his past.
Here is his own biography
Brian Whitmore is Senior Correspondent in RFE/RL's Central Newsroom, covering European security, energy and military issues and domestic developments in Russia. He also writes The Power Vertical blog.
... Prior to joining RFE/RL in 2007, he worked for eight years for the Boston Globe, first in the Globe's Moscow bureau and later as Central and Eastern European correspondent based in Prague. He was also a political correspondent and columnist in Russia where he worked for the English-language "St. Petersburg Times" and its sister publication, "The Moscow Times." Born in Connecticut, Brian has a Masters Degree in Political Science from Villanova University and Bachelor's Degree from St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia. Before becoming a journalist, he was a graduate lecturer at the University of South Carolina, and also taught seminars at Odessa State University in Ukraine and St. Petersburg State University in Russia.
BA in Politics, St. Joseph's University (Philadelphia, PA), 1986;  MA in Political Science, Villanova University (Villanova, PA), 1987.


Good, bad, or ugly....  
Looks "good" to me.


Last edited by Nelson on Fri Jan 15, 2016 5:53 am; edited 5 times in total

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Shaun Walker - Kremlin Apologist

Post by Nelson on Tue Sep 08, 2015 2:30 am

Walker biography
In his biography on website, RP,  “Born in London to Indian-British parents, he studied Russian History at Oxford University, before coming to Russia to work for an anti-AIDS NGO. He joined RussiaProfile in June 2005. His interests include opera, breakaway states, good food, and Southampton Football Club.”
Has worked for every paper under the sun. Lived in Moscow for close on 15 years now, I would think. At least from 2003.
Currently with The Guardian. But has worked for the Independent, Telegraph, RussiaProfile, Moscow Times, and so on.
Walker went to Moscow after his degree, primarily to learn Russian, and never came back. Very dodgy. Seems to value his Moscow residence more highly than telling the truth.
======

As an example of the way Walker operates, an article by him from July this year on MH17. With my edited comments from that time.



[Older photo, from Walker's days at RussiaProfile = RIA Novosti. The mega-Russian propaganda news network.]


MH17 crash one year on: blame game continues over who shot down plane
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/09/mh17-crash-one-year-on-blame-game-continues-over-who-shot-down-plane?CMP=twt_gu
Truth no closer... A year later, there has been no... conclusive proof of who was responsible, ..., possibly ....
Messages appeared ..., but were swiftly deleted.....In an interview with the Guardian...[Khodakovsky said] but honestly I can’t say anything with clarity because I didn’t see anything and didn’t hear anything.....remains a mystery...


=======

Absolutely super for Putin. These are the articles he loves... no proof - possibly.... I didn’t see anything and didn’t hear anything.
What about all the Bellingcat reports, tracking the Buk system across Russia and into Ukraine? And its removal - swift removal...
All the photos, evidence. The proof that Russia actually produced false evidence?
Just one sentence about Bellingcat from Walker... Other investigations, such as by ... Bellingcat, have suggested... Yes - "suggested".

It is what is missing from the article that betrays Walker for what he is.
His article - just lovely Putin propaganda. .... no proof.... possibly..... perfect for the Kremlin.

Shaun Walker knows precisely what he is doing. He is very clever.
And these are the most dangerous propagandists, of course.
Walker has lived in Moscow for near 15 years now.. And with this article - he guarantees his residency for another year or ten.

Just reading his marvellous piece of propaganda again, it is very skillfully written.
His first few paragraphs are quotes from babuskhas about bits falling down from the sky....
I think that by now we can all agree that MH17 fell out of the sky over eastern Ukraine.
But this, of course, fills up quite a bit of space, and gains the reader's confidence.

But look at the "evidence" that Walker produces....

Exactly who was controlling the Buk remains a mystery, although there is some evidence ...
....but one of his former prisoners said Bezler could not have shot down the plane.
The recording they released was about another plane. I was there when he was talking about it,” said Vasyl Budik,
..., he was going crazy; he understood that there would be major consequences for the rebels. But Bezler had nothing to do with it.....”


Now - hold on....
A guy who was held in prison for 3 months was sat next to Bezler when all this was going on, and knows for sure that Bezler "had nothing to do with it". ???

What about Bezler's facebook page boasting about shooting another plane down, and his messages to the "DNR guys"  - as Walker refers to the terrorists - to go and get photos of "the bird".... And then he deletes his facebook reference?? why?? A slip of the finger, Shaun???

The reference to "another plane"... the Russian media still make a lot of this. Bezler-Strelkov-Girkin was refering to a different plane? .... no.
Life News were the first new outlet to report the shooting down of the plane, including video from the terrorists themselves - straight from the horse's mouth -



Notice the reference to "another Ukrainian military cargo plane" ... another. They were clearly NOT talking about the previous cargo plane. They are now talking about a second one shot down.
The anchor woman even mentions where it fell - near Torez. (Indeed, where MH17 fell.)
Walker, by mentioning "another plane", in the context he does, cleverly introduces this Kremlin propaganda red herring again.. ... He is trying to create a smoke screen, some element of confusion....  
The "another Ukrainian... plane" of course turned out to be MH17. When this become known, the Russian tv anchor woman came back on air and said - see later in the video above - that the separatists absolutely could not have shot down the plane. .. Sick journalism indeed. 70 dead children? Sacrificeable pawns in Putin's delusional empire. And the Buk launcher quickly returns across the border to Russia, from whence it came.

What do we get then here from Walker - A guy locked up in prison, whom Walker spoke to, knows that Bezler had nothing to do with it. ...
Is that it? Evidence indeed.
Well - as Shaun would say, - "I rest my case. I take both Visa and Mastercard. Thank you, Mr Putin, sir."

I should also mention -  "Bezler" -  Walker fails to mention the Russian Colonel's other pseudonym... Strelkov, and his real name, Gerkin. Why?

Hopefully the reader is beginning to see now why these sort of "journalists" make me puke.
Walker is very very clever in what he does, and how he very carefully selects his "information".
Indeed, in my opinion, he is the Kremlin's favourite western "journalist", without a shadow of doubt.

====
if the reader wishes to view some "real" journalism on the tragedy that is MH17, then I suggest -

MH17
https://www.bellingcat.com/tag/mh17/
with links to various articles, for example,

Tracking the Vehicle that Transported the MH17 Buk
De nouvelles images satellites confirment que la Russie a retouché des images concernant le crash du MH17
New July 17th Satellite Imagery Confirms Russia Produced Fake MH17 Evidence
Evidence the Russian Military Supplied the Type of Missile Used to Shoot Down MH17
=====

One other example,
an article by Walker on the elections in Latvia.

Latvia’s ruling coalition keeps Russia-leaning party at bay in election
Harmony party, backed mainly by ethnic Russians, wins largest number of votes,...
A party mainly backed by ethnic Russians won the largest number of votes in Latvia’s parliamentary elections this weekend, but is likely to be shut out

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/05/latvia-ruling-coalition-russia-leaning-party-election

"shut out"? Oppression of the Russian people again? Sudetenland II?

Walker was right. "Harmony" were again the largest party - but - their share of the vote had gone down 20%.
Walker omited this information. Why?
Is Walker suggesting Latvia as another "Sudetenland" for Putin's next invasion?  - like Transdniestr, Donetsk, Crimea?
It is all part of Walker's clever and subtle propaganda for the gullible western reader.

Compare Walker's headline with that in the Moscow Times -
Pro-Russian Party Loses Seats in Latvian Parliamentary Elections
http://www.themoscowtimes.com/news/article/pro-russian-party-loses-seats-in-latvian-parliamentary-elections/508431.html

Living in a different world.
=====

Walker can write excellent articles. Like this here - very entertaining - but nothing political, of course...

Yakutsk: Journey to the coldest city on earth
http://www.independent.co.uk/travel/europe/yakutsk-journey-to-the-coldest-city-on-earth-771503.html
I have been to Siberia in winter, and I can confirm that it is cold there!

=====

Where is Walker from? Very little about him. South coast of England? No real biography. He never mentions what college he went to. Keble?
It would be fitting - but somehow I doubt it...
Inspector Morse -
Tell me, which is the most memorable college in Oxford? The one that people can always name? ....
Magdalen, maybe, because of the tower.
Or Christ Church....
Keble College. And do you know why? lt's the ugliest.


Good, bad, or ugly?
He is not like Graham Phillips; a delinquent with a psychotic hate complex.
Walker is clever. And ugly.


Last edited by Nelson on Sat Dec 12, 2015 7:29 am; edited 1 time in total

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The Guardian - and Milne

Post by Nelson on Wed Sep 09, 2015 10:39 am

Walker currently works for The Guardian. And its infamous editor, Seumas Milne.
A few points of interest -
====

“KGB agents loved the Guardian”
http://ukmediawatch.org/2011/10/10/kgb-agents-loved-the-guardian/
Gordievsky’s list of UK agents of influence, which he had handed over to Western spy chiefs upon defecting, included Guardian literary editor, Richard Gott.  Upon news of Gott’s involvement with the KGB, he resigned, in a letter then Guardian editor, Peter Preston, accepted “with a heavy heart”. ...
Gott was not the only Guardian journalist to be targeted and Gordievsky claimed that Gott’s newspaper was of special interest to Soviet intelligence.
“The KGB loved the Guardian,” he says. “It was deemed highly susceptible to penetration.”
Surprising? Hardly.
The Guardian’s current associate editor, Seumas Milne, is still an apologist for Soviet Communism and began his “journalistic” career as a contributor to the decidedly pro-Stalinist Communist Party publication, Straight Left.
Milne, in a 2001 essay, expressed regret over the fall of the Soviet Empire, which, during the height of its power, enslaved half of Europe under its totalitarian yoke, and killed maybe 60 million human beings (give or take a few million).
Milne especially lamented “The removal of the only state that could challenge the power of the US militarily”...
Gordievsky, in his book, drew a clear distinction between active agents and mere “useful idiots”.
The term “useful idiots” is a phrase coined by Lenin to describe Soviet sympathizers in Western countries who genuinely considered themselves an ally of Soviet ideology, but were held in contempt by the Soviet regime and cynically used.
While Gott was clearly an active agent, Milne evidently remains, 20 years after the collapse of communist totalitarianism, a useful idiot in good standing.

=====

Stalinist Seumas’s (failed) attempt to take on Conquest
https://shirazsocialist.wordpress.com/category/terror/
The death yesterday of Robert Conquest, author of The Great Terror, reminds us of the pathetic attempt by public school Stalinist hack Seumas Mine to challenge Conquest’s facts about the death-toll brought about by Stalinism.
The following article by Milne, written shortly before the final collapse of the USSR, appeared in the Guardian of March 10 1990. Until we republished it here at Shiraz (29 September 2012) it was not available anywhere else...


[In my opinion, below, Milne's most misguided article - and that is saying something. But it might explain why even the Guardian removed it from their website.
In essence, Milne tries to deny the Holodomor - the murder by Stalin of millions upon millions of Ukrainian people.
And this is inexcuseable.
A recent photo of Milne, from last year. You might recognise one of his panelists, in the discussion he chaired.
Milne, nearest the camera. ]



From THE GUARDIAN Saturday March 10 1990
The figure of 25 million deaths that is being attributed to the Stalin regime should be revised in the light of glasnost reports. Seumas Milne analyses new Soviet data that records much lower gulag populations

Stalin’s missing millions
All over South-east of England billboards have appeared in the past week declaring: “Once upon a time there was an uncle who murdered  25 million of his children.” ...

[And Milne goes on to try to persuade Guardian readers that Stalin didn't really kill too many people after all. ]
====

Why has the Guardian removed Milne's famous article from their website?? Your guess is as good as mine.
Milne remains a lover of Stalin, and - by association - of Putin. He even attended a Putin press-conference last year, asking his hero some questions.
Such is the Manchester Guardian that Milne joined, now simply The Guardian.

An example of Shaun Walker's colleague's writings at The Guardian :

It's not Russia that's pushed Ukraine to the brink of war  Wednesday 30 April 2014 21.01 BST by Seumas Milne
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/apr/30/russia-ukraine-war-kiev-conflict
The attempt to lever Kiev into the western camp by ousting an elected leader made conflict certain. It could be a threat to us all....
it was armed protesters in Maidan Square seizing government buildings and demanding a change of government and constitution....
No Russian government could have acquiesced in such a threat from territory that was at the heart of both Russia and the Soviet Union. ...


====
I have to say that, being a normal person living in Ukraine, I find Milne's writing extremely offensive. Vile.
Another example:

The demonisation of Russia risks paving the way for war
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/mar/04/demonisation-russia-risks-paving-way-for-war
the western-backed ousting of the elected government, through the installation of a Ukrainian nationalist regime...

[Strange. Where I am - in Ukraine - there was an election for President - overwhelmingly won by a man called Poroshenko, and also elections for the Rada.
What planet precisely is Milne living on? Answer - Soviet dream-wonderland. ]

And another example:
In Ukraine, fascists, oligarchs and western expansion are at the heart of the crisis
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/jan/29/ukraine-fascists-oligarchs-eu-nato-expansion
The story we're told about the protests gripping Kiev bears only the sketchiest relationship with reality.
[From here in Ukraine, Milne is the one struggling for a grasp of reality. Absolute pure unadulterated idiot. And that's being nice to him.
A touch more...]
But it bears only the sketchiest relationship to reality. EU membership has never been – and very likely never will be – on offer to Ukraine. .. many of those on the streets aren't very keen on democracy at all.
You'd never know from most of the reporting that far-right nationalists and fascists have been at the heart of the protests and attacks on government buildings....

====

What can explain this seemingly mad viewpoint of Milne. One sentence I found - in a left-wing journal -
Somehow, in the minds of people like Milne (a former member of the “Straight Left” diehard-Stalinist splinter from the Communist Party), Russian state policy always has an aura of leftism, or at least anti-imperialism, even when it is straightforwardly right-wing and imperialist.
http://www.workersliberty.org/story/2014/03/12/seamus-milnes-shoddy-arguments-putin

See also
Where Left and Right converge: Seumas Milne and Peter Hitchens on Ukraine and Syria
https://kyleorton1991.wordpress.com/2014/05/01/where-left-and-right-converge-seumas-milne-and-peter-hitchens-on-ukraine-and-syria/
It’s not exactly news that the Western far-Left and ultra-Right have more in common with each other than either has with the mainstream, but a case has now emerged twice of Seumas Milne—once described as “so Stalinist … he had snow on his boots“—and Peter Hitchens offering an apologia for the West’s enemies in such strikingly similar terms that it seemed worthy of attention.
Russia and Ukraine
In the Guardian today Milne has written....


Also
A letter to Seumas Milne ... regarding Ukraine
https://macmillen.wordpress.com/2014/10/30/milne/

Biography
Born 1958. The younger son of the former BBC Director General Alasdair Milne, Milne attended Winchester College and read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Balliol College, Oxford, and Economics at Birkbeck College, London University. wiki.
i.e. Private school. Rich kid. Trendy "communist" from the Balliol lefty generation.  Putin idoliser. And never done a real day's work in his life.

Someone who tries to make excuses for, and massage the true figures on the deaths of millions and millions and millions of people - many millions of Ukrainians - is not just bad. Their own "philosophy of life" - idolizing the communist setup - takes precedence over the truth. The truth cannot be admitted. And, as with Putin, history has to be changed to fit his own idiology, which has already failed. And failed to such an extent that tens of millions paid with their lives for it.
People like this - Milne - Putin - Stalin - they all have a screw or five loose.
Milne is not just bad, he is seriously ugly. From my perspective, having spent many years now in Ukraine, watching this country struggle to free itself from Russian tyranny, people like Milne are revolting to me. My reaction is similar to Hitler. Ugly is a kind word for both Hitler, and Milne.



By comparison with Milne, Shaun Walker, formerly of RussiaProfile = RIA Novosti, now of the Guardian, seems relatively mild.

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Carroll interviews Poroshenko in JEANS - disrespect

Post by Nelson on Mon Sep 14, 2015 6:33 am

Young boy Carroll, fresh out of Cambridge, one would think! -  shows disrespect to Poroshenko by turning up to interview him in jeans.
The other two journalists - WP, and Die Welt, Birnbaum and Gnauck..  are more professional -  in suit and tie.
Why are so many British journalists arrogant prats?
Don't they teach these goofballs how to eat with a knife and fork anymore at college?



The American, Birnbaum, aged 27. Yale. Obviously got some education there - Ivy League. Nice photo of him here with his wife -
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/07/fashion/weddings/kristine-berzins-michael-birnbaum-weddings.html

The other journalist, Gnauck, born in Poland in 1964. Educated at Mainz and Berlin Universities. Also a historian, as well as correspondent in Warsaw. Written several books.

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Shaun Walker - I didn't make this up. So predictable, it is not true!

Post by Nelson on Wed Sep 16, 2015 3:30 am

I wrote this on Monday, News in brief
Walker - looks like the Russiaprofile reporter is in Kiev. Bad news. Expect an article in the Guardian about one or more of -
a) Ukrainian fascists, b) Ukrainian nazis, c) Pravi sector - Svoboda attacking jews in Uman? .... or something else bad about Ukraine.



Why did Shaun Walker fly in from Moscow at the weekend? We all know why.
Walker is a very predictable Kremlin apologist. He tweets the latest photos of his idol, Putin at every possible occasion.
When I heard that Walker was back in Kiev I knew a bad article about Ukraine was on its way. The only question was - what?

Why would Walker come to Ukraine? He already knew there would be a good story - in this case, Jews and things Jewish being attacked.
Today - I read that the Jewish memorial in Kiev was attacked last night. Putin - Russian provocations? Could be.
A good Russian "journalist" always knows where to go for a story. Very true in Donetsk. They already know where the "action" will be. Walker is no different. So -
Where did Walker go? It was option c) above. To Uman.
His article below:

Techno, parties and prayer – celebrating Rosh Hashanah in Ukraine
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/15/rosh-hashanah-ukraine-antisemitism

Notice how the article is catalogued - rosh-hashanah-ukraine-antisemitism
Are we not surprised from Walker. Putin-Kremlin apologist if ever there was one.

“Every year there are problems; there is antisemitism,” said Baruch Fichman, the president of the Ukrainian League against Antisemitism. ...
Uman is not the only Ukrainian town to experience religious intolerance. There were reports that in the early hours of Monday morning at Babi Yar, the site of a Nazi massacre of more than 30,000 Jews during the second world war near Kiev, the Menorah monument was burned using petrol and tyres...


====
Statistical analysis.
Walker uses the word Ukraine or Ukrainian only 4 times in the article.
Walker uses the word Nazi 2 times in the article.
30 sentences. What is the probability of the words Ukraine and nazi being used in the same sentences twice?


Ukraine 4/30 Nazi 2/30
The probability of the word nazi appearing - both times - with the word ukraine ...

Is this dependent probability??. I need some help please on the maths. But it is a very small chance.
First time round, choosing a sentence with the word Ukraine in it - 4/30 chance. Second time, 3/29 chance. Both events together -
4/30.. x 3/29 ? = 1.38%. Basically one percent...
[Please somebody PM me, or post here to correct. Thanks. )

====

But with Walker it turns out to be 100% chance, of course.
The thought of associating the word Ukraine with Nazi was just too much of a temptation for Walker to resist.

Incidentally, the other times the word Ukraine is used - in the opening sentence - to describe where Uman is, and
in the sentence about "antisemitism" above.

As I have said before - Walker is very very clever in what he does.
Seumas Milne will give him a bonus for this article. Fits well with the Putin-Kremlin picture of Ukraine.
====
Where was Walker born? London
Vandals desecrate east London Jewish memorial with raw meat
http://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/vandals-desecrate-east-london-jewish-memorial-with-raw-meat-a2917331.html
[A few weeks ago. And no, this story did not appear in The Guardian!! Yes - London is in England!
It did, however, make the FT and the Independent. .... ]


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Post by Nelson on Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:35 am

People have asked where the term "DNR guys" comes from? From Walker himself, eg.
DNR guys on the scene say it was an attack by a diversionary group from inside the city. - Walker in January (twitter) spouting the Kremlin line after an attack on a trolleybus.


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Nolan Peterson

Post by Nelson on Fri Oct 02, 2015 3:40 am

Interesting article by this journalist in The Daily Signal
How the Wars in Ukraine and Syria Are Connected
01 October 2015.  Here are his opening sentences -
LONDON—For the last year, I’ve been reporting on the Ukraine war. I’ve been back and forth to the front lines, embedded with Ukrainian troops and civilian volunteers. I’ve been on the receiving end of Russian weapons, including tanks, heavy artillery, mortars, machine guns, grenade launchers, sniper rifles, and good ol’-fashioned Kalashnikovs.
I don’t know for sure the nationalities of the soldiers on the other side of no man’s land who were trying to kill me. There’s nothing distinctive about the sound of an incoming shell or bullet that indicates whether the finger pulling the trigger was Russian, Chechen, Serb, or a bona fide Ukrainian separatist.
But I do know this: One cannot buy tanks, heavy artillery, drones, and surface-to-air missiles (like the one used to shoot down MH-17) from a department store in eastern Ukraine. I checked. And one cannot learn how to effectively use this equipment in combat from a YouTube video.


I like his writing style, and not a bad article also. Quite long. But he keeps the reader interested. Who is this guy? I've come across him before, but quite an interesting bio.



I am a former special operations pilot and a combat veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan with multiple degrees in political science, French and journalism. As a freelance writer I cover international affairs and national security and have been published by several national publications.  As an officer in the U.S. Air Force, I served exchange tours at the French Air Force Academy, the U.S. Embassy in Paris, France, and interned at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium.  I have been to all seven continents and more than 40 countries on adventures from running a marathon across a glacier in Antarctica to swimming the Hellespont....
I have a master’s degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, where I was a McCormick Foundation Fellow.  My concentration was on national security reporting and long-form writing.  I graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 2004 with an undergraduate degree in political science and a minor in French. I also have a graduate degree in French from Middlebury College earned during a two-year fellowship at the Sorbonne University in Paris, France. I worked as a research assistant and writer at the National Strategy Forum think-tank in Chicago, IL., and served as a member of U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk’s veterans’ advisory board...

http://www.nolanwpeterson.com/about-me/

Yet another American in Ukraine. But he does seem to give things straight. Trained as a journalist.
Category. Mmm. With hair like that, well... no comment needed.  But we'll judge him on his writing to date - good.


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Two points; 1. Rosenberg 2. Moscow based journalists

Post by Nelson on Mon Oct 05, 2015 3:11 am

1. After an absence of 9 months, journalist Steve Rosenberg of Chingford has finally started twittering again.
Normally relatively unbiased, if rather "bbc" - with the "Russia says..." lines, unfortunately rather common. Reappearance on the scene to be welcomed, I hope. Time will tell.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Rosenberg_(journalist)
The Moscow journalists are dealing with the rise of the greatest dictator in the world since Joseph Stalin. And before him, Adolf Hitler.
But they are afraid - very afraid - to say this.
Rosenberg should be good on mafia-dictator types. Chingford graveyard, opposite All Saints' Church - if I remember correctly - the Cray Twins. Mega London gangsters. They obviously liked Chingford. Seen as being " up-market" compared to the east end.

2. An article I just found about journalists in Moscow. Yet to read it, to be honest, but the headline looks good )

VIEW FROM MOSCOW: Russia-based correspondents not immune to Kremlin infowar
http://bunews.com.ua/opinion/item/putin-s-propaganda-puppets-moscow-based-correspondents-not-immune-to-kremlin-infowar#.VhIHdT1fGM8.twitter
Western journalists covering Ukraine from Moscow bureaus are at risk from relentless Russian information offensive....
Russian journalists distorting the truth about events in Ukraine have literally created an environment of hatred that has motivated large numbers of men from Russia to come to Ukraine to kill people....

==
By Paul Niland
Originally from Dublin. 12 years in Kiev. Produces the Ukr Int magazine for the airline, I understand. Sometimes writes for the KP. Age about 42. Canadian wife.

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Corbyn hates Ukraine and adores Putin

Post by Nelson on Fri Oct 30, 2015 4:20 am

The appointment by the Leader of the UK Labour Party of Stalin apologist Seumas Milne to be his PR guy makes Corbyn's real position on Ukraine and world politics very clear. (Actually  "Executive Director of Strategy and Communications" )
Milne hates Ukraine, hates democracy, hates America, and loves dictators like Putin. Read six posts up for the run down on Milne.
Including this super quote really defining Milne's philosophy -
Somehow, in the minds of people like Milne (a former member of the “Straight Left” diehard-Stalinist splinter from the Communist Party), Russian state policy always has an aura of leftism, or at least anti-imperialism, even when it is straightforwardly right-wing and imperialist.

And perhaps Milne's most offensive article, trying to excuse Stalin's murder of millions - Milne's original article strangely disappeared from the Guardian at some point, but fortunately somebody kept a copy of it. at the link below -

Stalinist Seumas’s (failed) attempt to take on Conquest
https://shirazsocialist.wordpress.com/category/terror/
The death yesterday of Robert Conquest, author of The Great Terror, reminds us of the pathetic attempt by public school Stalinist hack Seumas Mine to challenge Conquest’s facts about the death-toll brought about by Stalinism.
The following article by Milne, written shortly before the final collapse of the USSR, appeared in the Guardian of March 10 1990. Until we republished it here at Shiraz (29 September 2012) it was not available anywhere else...


Milne on Russia and Ukraine -

In another article from 2014 titled "A real counterweight to US power is a global necessity", the left-wing columnist appeared to praise Russia's intervention in Ukraine as a check on US global power.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/11944144/Jeremy-Corbyn-appoints-top-advisor-who-once-defended-terrorism.html

The press reaction to Milne's appointment as advisor to the Labour leader - in the conservative leaning press, they are having a field day:

Seumas Milne will finish Labour off
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11951587/Seumas-Milne-will-finish-Labour-off.html

By hiring Seumas Milne, Jeremy Corbyn shows his utter contempt for real Labour voters
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/Jeremy_Corbyn/11945164/By-hiring-Seumas-Milne-Jeremy-Corbyn-shows-his-utter-contempt-for-real-Labour-voters.html
Real Labour voters read tabloids, love the Queen and join the Army. They don't relate to Guardianista apologias for terrorism

Exclusive: Jeremy Corbyn's millionaire spin doctor Seumas Milne sent his children to top grammar schools
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/Jeremy_Corbyn/11951866/Exclusive-Jeremy-Corbyns-millionaire-spin-doctor-Seumas-Milne-sent-his-children-to-top-grammar-schools.html
Mr Milne, 57, enjoyed an even more privileged upbringing than his children. He was educated at Winchester College, where annual fees are currently £34,740, making it more expensive than Eton and the second most expensive school in the country. ..
Mr Milne has already told his admirers in Russia that the shadow cabinet is likely to be reshuffled to take it further to the left. Speaking on Russia Today, he said: "I guess there will be some shakeup in the existing shadow cabinet


Even the leftwing press disapprove of Putin-loving Milne -

I wanted to believe in Jeremy Corbyn. But I can't believe in Seumas Milne
http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/media/2015/10/i-wanted-believe-jeremy-corbyn-i-cant-believe-seumas-milne
I specialise in the ex-USSR, where I lived for six years. I’ve written two books about Russia, as well as articles and radio documentaries. I’ve travelled to all but four of the countries of the old Warsaw Pact. I know it pretty well, in short. And yet, when I read what Milne writes about it, I slip into a parallel universe.
Take Ukraine......
For Milne, geopolitics is more important than people.
....


Corbyn’s new Stalinist voice
http://www.politico.eu/article/stalinist-voice-of-labour-seumas-milne-jeremy-corbyn-putin/
Milne has made a point of arguing that the number of Stalin’s victims has been greatly exaggerated. .... Russia’s invasion and annexation of Crimea? Not Moscow’s fault — it’s all down to Western expansionism. ...From Hugo Chavez to Bashar al-Assad and Vladimir Putin, every dictator and demagogue standing up to so-called U.S. imperialism is a de facto good guy.
Even by the standards of the hard left, Milne is almost pathologically unwilling to let the tiresome facts of reality intrude upon the certainty of ideology.


This apologist for Russian imperialism
http://mickhartley.typepad.com/blog/2015/10/this-apologist-for-russian-imperialism.html
Corbyn cannot see this apologist for Russian imperialism for what he is. The most dangerous fools are the ones who sound clever.

======

So Milne is Corbyn's chief advisor. So any vote for Labour is a thumbs-up for Russian imperialism, and will result in the deaths of more Ukrainians, and other democratic peace-loving people in the world.

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Rainsford BBC - "Half of all Ukrainians are married to Russians". Boll@cks.

Post by Nelson on Sun Nov 01, 2015 8:11 am

Sarah Rainsford - biography
BBC - back again to Moscow. She was better in Cuba.
Rainsford started off in Moscow many years ago - time of the Kursk disaster, I think. Her last placing was in Cuba. Now she's been moved back to Russia.
Degree from Fitzwilliam college, Cambridge. Russian and French. About 20 years' ago. Her husband, Kester Aspden, is more interesting. He recently wrote an autobiography. Including details on how he held up a shop in Yorkshire with a gun. The judge gave him 2 years. Aspden seems to think the judge wanted to "make an example" of him. He likes criticising judges.
Rainsford typically BBC - i.e. lots of "Russia denies this, Russia denies that...". Time will tell if she actually writes anything of any real substance.
A bit of her background here, in her own words -
http://www.theguardian.com/media/2006/jan/16/mondaymediasection13
====

Admin recently sent me to Greece and Cyprus to check up on the current progress there of the EU AA with Ukraine through their respective parliaments.
As I reported, last week Cyprus finally seems to have got this process moving forward. Nothing from Greece yet.

But - while staying in hotels I had to endure the mega-garbage coming out of the BBC now. This included some absolute complete and utter cr@p from a BBC journalist called Sarah Rainsford. [Unfortunately my laptop packed in. Now being fixed. So little option but to watch tv. ]
In her report, from Moscow, where obviously she can only think about her residency documents, and those of her convicted armed robber husband, she gives a very biased report, with an unchallenged interview with a Russian guy saying that "Ukraine and Russia have always been together", and also,
"Half of all Ukrainians are married to Russians".
Complete lies. A complete and utter distortion of the truth. Rainsford and the BBC.  
Sadly, having endured such garbage from the BBC, I have now started watching more of CNN!! But better than both - Euronews.
Here, but not from BBC World, is the Rainsford garb@ge report, I think more or less the same as what I saw. It was repeated every half hour for a couple of days on BBC World. Conclusion. Do not listen to BBC reports anymore. You have been warned!



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Contrast Rainsford with this by Whitmore - chalk and cheese...

Post by Nelson on Fri Nov 20, 2015 9:57 am

The Daily Vertical: Does Anybody Remember Ukraine?
by Brian Whitmore



Video also at the link here
http://www.rferl.org/content/daily-vertical-does-anybody-remember-ukraine/27375035.html

What a contrast. There are journalists and ... Moscow resident "journalists".

===
Thought. Rainsford's hubby has a major criminal conviction. Surely he shouldn't be allowed into Russia?!
P.3 of the visa form - "Have you ever been arrested or convicted of any offence?".
Do the Kremlin give him a visa - in return for nice "favourable" coverage by the beeb? Who knows...

But let's be positive - excellent report by Whitmore. 2 minutes long, like the other video, but he gives it clear and straight. Honest. Truthful.
None of Rainsford's boll@cks.

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Chalk and Cheese; the BBC and RFERL.

Post by Nelson on Fri Dec 04, 2015 2:37 am

On December 03 three articles appeared in the press, two in the BBC, and the other in RFERL.

The latter -
Ukraine!? What Ukraine?
http://www.rferl.org/content/ukraine-what-ukraine/27405286.html
What Vladimir Putin didn't say may be just as important as what he did say.
In a one-hour speech to a joint session of the Russian parliament, Vladimir Putin did not utter the word "Ukraine" once....
Just for for a bit of perspective, in his 2014 state-of-the-nation speech, Putin mentioned Ukraine 18 times, including four references in the first five minutes. ...


Intelligent, interesting, educational. Yes, some opinion, but also well-thoughtout intelligent argument. The author even describes Putin's Russia as a
"kleptocratic autocracy".
That was all Greek to me, so I had to look it up in wikipedia. Kleptocracy - the elite stealing from the country. Autocracy - one person rule. Dictatorship.

Compare and contrast to the BBC's pitiful and frankly sickening articles on Russia for that day.
First we had a report on
Vladimir Putin: Russia's action man president
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-15047823
...Mr Putin appears to relish his macho image, helped by election stunts like flying into Chechnya in a fighter jet in 2000 and appearing at a Russian bikers' festival by the Black Sea in 2011.....
News or Putin idolization? Bizarrely, I can find no name with the article. Why? Ashamed at producing such garbage?
Also
Putin: Turkey 'will regret' downing Russian bomber in Syria
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-34993629
The bog-standard article on Putin's annual address yesterday, the bbc basically telling the west what Putin wants to tell the west.
Again - no name to the article. Likely to be Rainsford, particularly the former. Possibly Rosenberg.

Conclusion -
I used to respect the bbc when I was young, naive, and stupid. Now - living in Ukraine, I see it as a useless brainless extension of the Russian news network.
It is absolutely hopeless. Just nothing remotely intelligent there. So sad.
By comparison, RFERL is alive, engaging, excellent - in my opinion, of course, sat here in Ukraine, looking at what is going on around me.
Rainsford and Rosenberg at the BBC? 50s - over the hill? Pushing for early retirement? Quite possibly.
Or Moscow resident syndrome - unable to write the truth anymore, or think independently of the Russian "media"?
They need replacing by somebody with a functioning brain.
====
Possible replacement? This is a good article, and from a Moscow resident! I'll try and find something out about her.
Why does the Kremlin lie?
http://littleatoms.com/world/why-does-kremlin-lie

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Re: Journalists reporting on Ukraine - the good, the bad, and the ugly

Post by Odessite on Mon Dec 14, 2015 5:57 am

@Nelson wrote:Graham W Phillips.

Dundee University, 98-01, Philosophy and History.
Did he graduate? I can't find his name in the university list of graduates for 2001....


Neither can I!

Dundee University Graduation List 2001

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Roland Oliphant - some precise comments

Post by Nelson on Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:12 am

Oliphant biography -
Born and raised in East Sussex, England. ? Cavendish School, Eastbourne, Class of 99, Aussie parents - Pippa? father Dr John?  Green Party candidates? . In 2002 went to Hungary. In 2006 he graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an M.A. in Philosophy and moved to Moscow, where he worked as an English Teacher and Editor for RIA Novosti before joining Russia Profile in September 2008. Now at the Telegraph. Was very pro-Russian. Obviously, a long long time Moscow resident. A decade already.
Can blow hot or cold.
He can produce pure Kremlin propaganda also. He did - perhaps still does - work for RIA Novosti.
====

I have to say that I was impressed with what Roland Oliphant wrote in The Daily Telegraph today.
In the live write up,

Vladimir Putin live: Russian military 'were in Ukraine', president admits
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/vladimir-putin/12054164/Vladimir-Putins-annual-press-conference-2015-live.html

now, obviously closed, he wrote some honest things. Well - there is hope for other resident journalists in Moscow - maybe.
This from Oliphant -

After holding forth on Turkey, Putin requests a question on Ukraine, and gets a sharp one from a Ukrainian journalist, writes Roland Oliphant.
"As far as your denial that there are Russian troops in Donbass is concerned, I'd like to pass on a big hello from two Russian officers captured there. Will you exchange them."....
He [Putin] also says "I never said there weren't people carrying out certain tasks of a military nature." A flat out lie. He and his top officials have denied the presence of troops in Ukraine dozens, if not hundreds, of times. That denial was in turn a transparent lie, too.
That's a classic Putin. The lie about not having told a lie (he denied this a million times). He did it about Crimea too.

====

Oliphant is absolutely correct. It is classic Putin - a lie about not having told a lie.
I didn't see this from any other journalist present. We will see. Straight talking from Oliphant. Calling a lie and lie. Unlike his idiotic boss.

Oliphant - in 2014 - was very pro-Russian, but this may have been the influence of his nutcase boss at The Telegraph, called David Blair.
Perhaps the influence of Russian money at the Telegraph, or amongst Blair's friends?
Blair was born in Africa. He is supposedly an expert on African affairs. Ukraine, however, is not in Africa. And Blair was very clearly out of his depth.
In 2014 he writes -  
A heavy-handed military operation is alienating the very people Kiev should be winning over....
we cannot simply place the burden on Vladimir Putin to end the killing....
So Mr Poroshenko should not feel that the West’s pressure on Russia will let him off the hook. He should be told to conduct this offensive sensibly – or cancel it altogether.

Clearly Blair, the Telegraph Chief Foreign Correspondent, is an idiot of major proportions.
How do you conduct a war "sensibly" against untold thousands of Russian tanks, and thousands upon thousands of Chechen mercenaries with as much regard for human rights as Blair has functioning brain cells?

Given the stupidity of his boss, quite a brave write up from Oliphant, me thinks.

====
Other points -
Contrast this write up with that by Guardian "reporter" Shaun Walker. Walker does not use the word "lie" once! Instead, he refers to Putin's new Ukraine line.
On the other hand, Walker and Oliphant tend to go everywhere together. And are constantly tweeting each other's posts. Both worked in their early days for Russiaprofile = RIA Novosti. So maybe they go back, well, decades!!
Oliphant's write up on MH17 basically states that Putin shot it down. Walker says nothing of the sort.
====
Update - 2016 -
Oliphant still producing Kremlin propaganda at times. Sad really. Time for the Telegraph - and Guardian to get some real journalists in Russia. Journalists who are not scared of really saying what is going on there.


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The leader of the "LPR" presented a medal to notorious British journalist G. W. Phillips (Photo)

Post by Admin on Tue Dec 22, 2015 12:32 am

The leader of the "LPR" Igor Plotnitsky awarded British journalist Graham Phillips a Medal "For Merit" second degree.
The award for "services" to Phillips, well-known for his sympathy for the terrorists' "people's republics", was immediately after interviewing the head of the "LPR".
[LPR - Lugansk Peoples' Republic]



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James Carden - the Kremlin apologist from America

Post by Nelson on Mon Jan 11, 2016 9:52 am

A couple of days' ago, this article appeared in an American journal, The Nation.
It was written by one of America's Kremlin apologists, by the name of James M. Carden.
[Who, on closer inspection, turns out to be a "nobody" with no real qualifications. But on whose payroll is he?!]
In the article, Carden launches a serious attack on RFERL, for its "anti-Russia propaganda".

Uncle Sam Got a Shiny New Propaganda Bullhorn for Christmas

http://www.thenation.com/article/uncle-sam-got-a-shiny-new-propaganda-bullhorn-for-christmas/
A new partnership is turning Radio Free Europe into an anti-Russia propaganda machine.
By James Carden
...The Interpreter will be, in turn, obligated to publish each installment of ITS intractably Russo-phobic “The Power Vertical” blog...


Carden is really scraping the barrel. He mentions CIA funding for RFE - which actually stopped almost 50 years' ago!!
Here is Whitmore's response -



Who is this "expert" Carden? It turns out he is no expert at all.
From the US Department of State.
https://careers.state.gov/ff/meet-the-fellows/franklin-fellows/james-carden
... Carden ...  is serving [article date; 3/28/2012] in EUR’s Office of Russian Affairs (EUR/RUS), ...as an advisor to the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission.
James ..worked at the foreign exchange desk at JP Morgan Chase in New York. There, as a member of the ...Team, he executed spot and forward FX trades ... having served ... also [at] Deutsche Bank. [Wow. He worked in a bank for several years.]
He is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) [2010-11] where he was a Russia/Eurasia concentrator.  His coursework covered a broad range of issues, including political economy, energy policy and economics.
Upon graduation from SAIS, James took part in a pilot graduate-level exchange program between SAIS and the Moscow State University ...  While there, he took courses in ..Russian politics, ..language and ..foreign policy issues. He also traveled widely in Russia and Eastern Europe. [2011; so only a few months at most.]
[So he gets a dodgy "degree", and travels "widely" in Russia and Europe, all in the space of maybe three months?? Yeah... Talk about a padded c.v. There's nothing there!]
James called Brooklyn Heights, NY home for the past ten years.  His hobbies include running and skydiving.


So, after a few years working in a bank, and maybe three months in Russia, somebody gets him a quasi-job as an advisor on Russia??!. Wierd. Why?
The guy has no real qualifications. In reality he is a puppet for somebody. But for whom?

This article mentions Carden as a Kremlin propagandist -
Top Kremlin Critics In The West Face Media Smears On The Home Front
http://www.forbes.com/sites/melikkaylan/2015/05/21/top-kremlin-critics-in-the-west-face-media-smears-on-the-home-front/
...Carden's ... essay......This time the blame for anti-Putin currents in the US falls on neo-McCarthyism – certainly not on any blameworthy act by the Napoleon in the Kremlin. ...

See this also.
Vladimir Putin, “moderate”
http://usefulstooges.com/tag/james-carden/
Gives the rundown on Carden, the Kremlin boy.

And now, some of his articles - all anti-Ukrainian, and pro-Russian..
Notice the heavy references to "nationalists", "fascists", "nazis".... out of the Kremlin "Shaun Walker songbook". ..

Ukraine Exposed: Kiev's Authoritarianism

http://nationalinterest.org/feature/ukraine-exposed-kievs-authoritarianism-12151
....In January, according to Agence France Presse, thousands of Ukrainian nationalists took part in a torchlight procession marking the 106th birthday of Ukrainian nationalist Stepan Bandera. According to AFP, some of the marchers “wore second world war-era army uniforms while others draped themselves in the red and black nationalist flags and chanted ‘Ukraine belongs to Ukrainians!’” Anyone under the impression that torchlight processions through the streets of European capitals are a thing of the past would be sorely mistaken.....
...Avakov, has only encouraged these elements, noting that “...in September he even named a leader of the neo-Nazi Azov brigade to head the police in the Kiev region.” ...


What Obama Didn’t Say About Ukraine
http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/what-obama-didnt-say-about-ukraine/
...what is actually taking place. ..is: .. the drawing of a new Western/Russian divide that cuts right through the birthplace of Russian civilization...
most [in S and E ukraine] emphatically do not see the overthrow of their democratically elected president by radicals in Kiev as something to be celebrated....


He insists on describing what is going on as a "civil war", a "coup". He plays down Russian involvement to "food supplies"... !!
US' Refusal to See Reality Stokes the Flames of Ukraine's Civil War
http://russia-insider.com/en/ukraines-bloody-civil-war-no-end-sight/5183
...Questions regarding Russian involvement were met with scoffs—though one did admit that “[their] Russian brothers” did provide food supplies to the area....

The False Promise of Petro Poroshenko
http://us-russia.org/2696-the-false-promise-of-petro-poroshenko.html
It would be closer to the mark to say that there is a party to the Ukrainian conflict that is at risk of backsliding into fascism. It just happens to be the one we’re supporting.
No surprise, this article also appears in the Russian press. Say no more...
Лживое обещание Петра Порошенко
http://inosmi.ru/world/20140924/223223750.html

Here he gives the Putin oft-quoted line about a "coup" in Kiev...
The New York Times Is Misreporting Ukraine News
http://us-russia.org/2890-the-new-york-times-is-misreporting-ukraine-news.html
All in all, this account of the events leading up to the coup of February 21-22 leaves the reader with the overwhelming impression that for the Times, the violent overthrow of democratically elected governments is fine...

And then this article -
US Strategy to Arm Kiev a 'Fantasy' Doomed to Failure – James Carden
http://sputniknews.com/analysis/20150401/1020305122.html

What is Sputnik News, you might well ask?
wiki -
Sputnik is an international multimedia service launched on 10 November 2014 by Rossiya Segodnya, an agency wholly owned and operated by the Russian government, which was created by a Decree of the President of Russia on December 9, 2013.[2] Sputnik replaces the RIA Novosti news agency on an international stage (which remains active in Russia)[3] and Voice of Russia.

Is this him?
http://www.realdirect.com/e/519.12-STREET.11215/
96k mortgage? Will nice Mr Putin pay it off for him? Or some investors at JP Morgan with "Russian" interests?! He smells dodgy to me.
Carden often writes for the journal Russia Insider, which, itself, is a dodgy publication - maybe owned by...
http://www.stopfake.org/en/is-russia-insider-sponsored-by-a-russian-oligarch-with-the-ties-to-the-european-far-right/
....a Russian oligarch who is close to the Kremlin and has been providing funding for the war in Eastern Ukraine is quite revealing.

Kremlin payroll? Or just Russian oligarch money? Whatever, Carden is a prostitute, pure and simple.
A nobody turned into an "expert" by a dodgy c.v. and influence from somewhere. And gets published mainly by Russian, or Russian government owned journals.

Why the attack on Whitmore? Carden's real boss - likely a Kremlin oligarch - doesn't like what Whitmore is writing. Whitmore clearly getting up somebody's nose in the Russian oligarch money world.


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American Carden, "Russia Insider" and its "editor" Bausman

Post by Nelson on Fri Jan 15, 2016 6:20 am

I had a look at who is funding "Russia Insider", the journal which James M. Carden - see a couple of posts above - frequently writes for.
Initially, I found this at stopfake.org
Is Russia Insider sponsored by a Russian oligarch with the ties to the European far right?
http://www.stopfake.org/en/is-russia-insider-sponsored-by-a-russian-oligarch-with-the-ties-to-the-european-far-right/
The leaks reveal that Bausman, rather than relying on crowdfunding for Russia Insider, asks for money from a Russian oligarch Konstantin Malofeev via his associate Alexey Komov.
There were several interesting articles devoted to Malofeev in the international and Russian media. In the context of this blog, Malofeev is known for providing financial assistance to the pro-Russian extremists in Eastern Ukraine (for this very reason Malofeev was sanctioned by the EU, Norway and Switzerland), organising homophobic conferences in Russia, assisting French far right politicians in getting Russian money, and building European far right alliances....


Looking at the site "Russia Insider" the headlines of the articles say it all -
=====
Kiev Troops Routinely Plunder Dirt Poor Donbass Civilians (Russian TV News Video)
Congrats Germans! This Is How You Do a Putin Interview [Bild interview which the Kremlin published themselves, it was so good!]
SOLVED: Opposition Shot Victims on Kiev's Maidan
The Results of One Month of Reporting From Donbass [by GRAHAM PHILLIPS - see about 10 posts' up. A real psycho case. Colleague of Carden, clearly]
Russian Civilization Is Indomitable [by Oleg Tsarev!]
Uncle Sam Got a Shiny New Propaganda Bullhorn for Christmas [James Carden]
US Elite Wants to Destroy Russia at Any Price
Time to End Sanctions and Start Cooperating with Russia

=====
and an example of Bausman's writing on Ukraine -
An incident in the Ukraine he knew of where "100 Russian sympathizers were burned alive by Neo Nazi Ukrainians" had not been reported by Western media.
"They refused to believe it happened," he said. "They were lying about murdered children, lying about the burning of defenseless civilians. As an American, I knew what was going on.

http://www.newstimes.com/local/article/Greenwich-native-launches-alternative-news-site-6166830.php

Bausman - the editor - 27 years in Russia. Family there. Clearly money is more important than principles for him...
http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/print77821.htm
Charles has a fascinating family history. He was born in Frankfurt, Germany to an American father and German mother. His father, a foreign correspondent, brought the family to Moscow where they lived from 1968-72. After Moscow the family moved to a Connecticut suburb of New York City. He studied history at Wesleyan University, and later finance at Columbia Business School. He worked briefly as a journalist for NBC in Moscow from 1987–1990, then returned to New York to earn his MBA, and has worked on and off in Moscow since 1994 in finance and business. He first came to Russia as an adult in 1985 on a summer language program. Before starting Russia Insider he worked in private equity, specializing in large-scale industrial investment in agriculture.

The Russian Orthodox church?! You could truly say that Bausman has sold his soul to the devil.

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Euan MacDonald - KP

Post by Nelson on Fri Feb 12, 2016 1:22 pm

I think everybody knows what I think about the Kyiv Post. English speakers in Ukraine remember well the days when all you would get in the KP was revolting propaganda in favour of the gas billionaire, Yulia Tymoshenko; rather like what you get in the Russian press now for Putin. The KP would attack any opponent of hers, probably on her instructions. We all well remember the day when the obnoxious "journalist" Taras Kuzio attacked Yatseniuk for being a Jew.
Are those seemingly endless days of kissing YT's butt over? Well, it looks like there are some intelligent people working now at the KP. Let us hope the current management allow them to write freely, without forcing Tymoshenko propaganda down peoples' throats again.
Enough of the KP and Tymoshenko, also known as the Yulia Post.
I recommend an article by a Scotsman - and that takes some doing, believe me! Euan MacDonald. Article is below, "Lessons from the past". Appeared today in the KP.

But first a little bio about young Mac -
Born in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1969. Cleveden Secondary School.  Studied Artificial Intelligence and Linguistics at the U of Edinburgh. Graduated in 1991. 20 years in Kiev. Family - two sons. Currently working for the Kyiv Post.  He seems to give the facts straight. And doesn't seem to hold any prejudices unlike many of the others. Good article here about the word "allegedly"....
http://euan-macdonald.blogspot.com/

Euan MacDonald: Lessons from the past about Minsk II
http://www.kyivpost.com/article/opinion/op-ed/euan-macdonald-lessons-from-the-past-about-minsk-ii-407961.html
Recommended - 3 or 4 sentences to wet your appetite -
...So as Putin sat at the table in Minsk, talking peace, he was fully aware that his forces were preparing for more war. And, no doubt, he was betting that the Western response to the Russian military seizure of Debaltseve would be weak and indecisive.
He was right. In the wake of the Russian attack on Debaltseve, the United States declared that the issue of providing Ukraine with lethal weapons to defend its territory was “on the table.” But even after subsequent violations of Minsk II, such weapons have never arrived....


Euan MacDonald - good, bad or ugly?



Please don't judge him by this photo. But this was the only one I could find in which he appears to have combed his hair within the last week.
Instead, judge him by his journalism. I put him in the first division, perhaps even alongside the great RFERL writer, Brian Whitmore.
I'll see what else he writes before I suggest cloning him. Dolly the Sheep was Scottish also, after all.
Young Mac - well, clear, precise, intelligent, logical thought - cutting! With some humour. Can we call him Mac the Knife?
Perhaps not. He also has some restraint, and boundaries. Perhaps Mac le Pen. He controls his writing, with a touch of savoir faire.
Conclusion. Good.

[P.S. Is this really him in the photo? Please somebody correct me if I am wrong.
Also, the photo software asked me if this photo was "family safe". The jury is out on that one. ]


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Ukrainian Journalist Details Her 419 Days In Separatist Captivity

Post by Nelson on Tue Mar 08, 2016 12:20 pm

Today, the 8th of March, International Women's Day, it seems fitting to report on a real journalist; who also happens to be a woman.
Scumballs like Russiaprofile and Guardian "journalist" Shaun Walker slink around in Donetsk with his beloved "DNR guys". And spends his evenings at the Donetsk opera. And twitters numerous photos of Putin calendars. BBC "journalist" Sarah Rainsford interviews people who state that half of Ukrainians are married to Russians. Deliberate falsehoods - but Walker and others get their Moscow residence permits.
But this woman - Maria Varfolomeyeva - is a real journalist. And went through hell for 419 days. Apparently spending about 24 hours in the fresh air in all that time.
God bless her. Slava Ukraini!
Thanks to RFERL for this report -
=====
Ukrainian Journalist Details Her 419 Days In Separatist Captivity
http://www.rferl.org/content/ukraine-journalist-talks-419-days-separatist-captivity/27595944.html
Ukrainian journalist Maria Varfolomeyeva spent 419 days in Russia-backed separatists' captivity in eastern Ukraine, where the 30-year-old woman was accused of spying....
Fighters from the group's security arm claimed not to beat people up, Varfolomeyeva said. "But those who left for interrogations would come back with broken ribs, hematomas. The halls were just 'very slippery; people fell,'" she said she was told.
The separatists tortured some captives by attaching generators to their ears, Varfolomeyeva said. "They call it 'phoning [U.S. President Barack] Obama.'"....

[Video report also at the link above.]

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The best piece of journalism so far this year for me: two minutes of brilliance.

Post by Nelson on Thu Mar 10, 2016 1:16 pm

The Daily Vertical: A Travesty Of A Mockery Of A Sham
http://www.rferl.org/content/daily-vertical-travesty-of-a-mockery-of-a-sham/27600257.html



Text here
http://www.rferl.org/content/daily-vertical-transcript-travesty-of-a-mockery-of-a-sham/27599999.html
....Savchenko is essentially a foreign hostage being held by a criminal regime.
She's a prisoner of war being prosecuted as a common criminal on absurdly trumped-up charges by a country that claims it isn't even involved in the war in which she was abducted.
She faces 23 years in a Russian prison for doing her job as a Ukrainian soldier -- defending her country against an illegal Russian invasion.
How can you respond to that -- except to flip the bird
Because everything about her case has been a lie.
...


The great Brian Whitmore at his lyrical best.
Why or why can't we get stuff like this in the BBC? Because they have cr@p stuck up Brits stuck in Moscow.
Why can't we get stuff like this in The Guardian from Shaun Walker?
Because his boss Seamus Milne is a Stalinist who worships Putin. And Walker, a reporter for Russiaprofile = RIA Novosti still feels loyalty to the Kremlin and - what he calls his - "DNR guys".
Whitmore needs cloning. And copies sent to the Guardian, Telegraph, BBC, and so on.
He presents the truth, and gives it straight. No cr@p.

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Kyiv Post or Yulia Post? Tymoshenko's links with Mahmood.

Post by Nelson on Mon Apr 18, 2016 5:56 am

Many of us at this forum - I speak for many readers I know also - have had doubts about the Kyiv Post, particularly in the days when scumballs like "expert" Taras Kuzio was attacking Yatseniuk for being a jew, or trying to make other Tymshenko rivals out to be crooks.
We just assumed that Kuzio was being paid to write propaganda for Tymoshenko's outfit. All this is well documented elsewhere in other forums.
But the links apparently run much much deeper.... This from 03 April, 2016. -

KYIV POST OWNER CAUGHT UP IN LATE 1990S SCANDAL
https://www.occrp.org/en/panamapapers/kyiv-post-owner-in-late-1990s-scandal/
Mohammad Zahoor, a Ukraine-based British millionaire of Pakistani origin, was caught up in a far-reaching investigation in 1998 by Ukrainian investigators examining whether politicians Yulia Tymoshenko and Pavlo Lazarenko might have worked together to control the gas industry in Ukraine....
The documents show that on June 12, 1998, a BVI police detective named Graeme McDowell Smith acting for Ukrainian authorities received permission to search the Mossack Fonseca premises for companies, trusts or transactions related to Tymoshenko, ... Lazarenko, ... and a number of their associates.
The purpose of the search, the order said, was an investigation “in connection with fraud and misappropriation of funds.”
Smith was interested in a number of companies, two of which were linked to Zahoor. ...
During Lazarenko’s term as Prime Minister, UESU became the largest importer of natural gas to Ukraine with an annual turnover reaching $10 billion. The investigators were suspicious of the company’s rapid success and of its founders, Tymoshenko; her husband Oleksandr Tymoshenko; and their family friend, Olexander Gravets. Investigators suspected they were helped by Lazarenko....


Note -
...newsmagazine Focus estimated Zahoor’s fortune at $500 million, ...including Ukraine’s English-language newspaper Kyiv Post, an OCCRP partner....

Zahoor had or has business links with Tymoshenko.
So can we guarantee the "independence" of the Journalism at the Kyiv Post?
You must be joking.

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The BBC makes me puke

Post by Nelson on Mon Apr 18, 2016 6:09 am

This article appeared in the BBC a couple of days ago.
What is interesting is - not what is in the article - but what it leaves out. (The Shaun Walker school of "journalism". )

Ukraine conflict: Daily reality of east's 'frozen war'
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-35990401
....Class teacher Galina Maxinovna sees the war as between "two groups of representatives of the same people"....
"It is members of the same family....
The pro-Russian authorities in Donetsk blame Ukraine for the continuing fighting....

====
BBC. What can one say? An article about the war between Ukraine and Russia, which - doesn't mention Russia. Why?
The author - Tom Burridge - is in occupied Donetsk, and so has to be nice to the Russian propaganda line - Russia is not involved.
Burridge doesn't mention Russian involvement at all!!!! It is all Shaun Walker's "DNR guys". The Donetsk Peoples' Republic.
How can you write about the Russian - Ukraine war in April 2016 and not mention Putin, or the Russian armed forces? Or the Buk missile from Kursk which shot down MH17?
But the BBC can do it.
I hate these articles - "politically correct' according to the occupying forces. And so the journalist is a nice guy for them. And can stay there. And come back.
The truth - there is no truth in this article. In fact, there is nothing at all in the article.
It remainds me of Sarah Rainsford, BBC Moscow Correspondent, interviewing some goofball in some Moscow airport, who says that half of Ukrainians are married to Russians. This goes past - unchallenged by Rainsford. Good propaganda - good lies - for Russia. And good news for Rainsford's residency in Moscow.
===
The BBC "journalist", Burridge - stupid, or naive? Probably the latter.
In point of fact, he wrote an almost identical style article a year ago. 18 March 2015
Ukraine conflict leaves Donetsk families divided and apart
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-31903680

The same style, interviewing a few Babkas. They might as well say -  "I love Russia. The Ukrainians are crucifying our children. They are all nazis... ".
The usual Kremlin line. Oh - I forgot - "The Ukrainians are all anti-semitic; especially Groisman. he is the worst".
[Groisman is a practicing jew - and PM of Ukraine]

Burridge - well... nice-enough "chap". BBC through and through. He can speak Spanish. And always puts the ...
"Russia says.... Russia denies.... " lines into his articles.
Bio -
Believe he studied Politics and Spanish at Bristol University. Started off at Radio Bristol. Then BBC - Points West. Posted first to Madrid. Spent some time last year in Donetsk.
Don't think he can speak the languages. Likely used as a stop-gap in Ukraine, as the BBC probably can't afford to pay for a journalist here. A dozen years now with the BBC. A bit more bio here - http://www.globalrealestate.org/Event/Tom%20Burridge/contact/35bb8e2c-8ee5-e311-941b-00155d000f03/af891d91-4aad-e411-9403-00155d000f08

====
As for the Russian-Ukrainian war, I write about, go no further than today's News in Brief -
Bellingcat: Russia fired on Ukraine with Grad more than 300 times [from Russian territory]
Post by Nelson Today at 1:21 am Posted 18 April 2016.
http://www.pravda.com.ua/news/2016/04/17/7105820/
Yes - Ukraine is at war against Russia. Yes - "Russia". Not the "pro-Russians" of the "BBC" - we love Putin brigade.

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An intelligent journalist takes apart BBC garbage on Ukraine

Post by Nelson on Tue Apr 26, 2016 4:35 am

Excellent, EXCELLENT article here by a journalist I do not know -

How Russia’s worst propaganda myths about Ukraine seep into media language
http://euromaidanpress.com/2016/04/25/how-russias-worst-propaganda-myths-about-ukraine-seeps-into-media-language/?utm_content=bufferd9089&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer#arvlbdata

An excellent deconstruction of a bbc article (original here, but no name!)
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-36099885
(April 24) about Ukraine.
Author - of article which destroys this garbage - Paula Chertok - apparently went to Rutgers, Berkeley.
At Rutgers I would estimate in he mid-1980s, at a time when "deconstruction" and "semiotic analysis" were the buzzwords in many disciplines.



Language of equivalency. Worse still is the BBC’s use of language that suggests Russia and Ukraine are equally at fault for war, both equally guilty in the overall scheme of things. Just look at the unmistakable language of equivalence and mutuality: “each other,” “both sides,” “similarly” are repeatedly used, as is “tit for tat” twice. The reader is invariably left with the impression that both Ukraine and Russia are equally culpable.



....Now you might say, well, they are doing the same things to one another in certain realms, so why not use this language? The problem with this story is that it superficially addresses a superficial issue, without effectively providing the context for the reader to understand the balance of responsibility, using language patterns that support a distortion of reality. Russia invaded Ukraine, seized its territory, killed its people, tried its citizens on questionable charges of terrorism, while Ukraine bans Russian films. There is no equivalency here. But by using words repeatedly about equivalency, without the appropriate contextualization with well-established facts, we’re left thinking we’re reading about parties that are equally bad, equally dirty, and equally to blame for the current war “crisis.”

============
To emphasize the bbc's hopeless standard of journalism, a tweet from yesterday from Sarah Rainsford; this time about MH17.
Note the use of language....  

Sarah Rainsford ‏@sarahrainsford  20 ч20 часов назад
Despite tabloid hype BBC ed says his prog finds it 'unlikely' #Ukrainian jet shot down #MH17; takes 'balanced view' on 'competing theories'

"Competing theories". Russian propaganda indeed is working very effectively.
The BBC desperately need somebody intelligent in their Moscow bureau.
From what I have heard elsewhere the bbc programme producer is a "sensationalist" (idiot) - wanting good viewing numbers, as opposed to telling the truth. $$$

This from Kasparov -
Garry Kasparov ✔ ‎@Kasparov63
Idiots at BBC, what did they think? “Competing theories” of #MH17?! Produced by the Kremlin? Next, BBC can question if Holocaust happened.


============
"...intelligent journalist"? Maybe my heading is wrong.  The author describes herself as a "linguist, teacher, writer...." Intelligent, certainly Very Happy

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David Blair proves that leopards can change their spots.

Post by Nelson on Wed Jun 15, 2016 9:25 am

Telegraph journalist David Blair famously wrote an article accusing Ukraine of being "heavy-handed" fighting a war against Russia.
At the time I called him an idiot. And I see no reason, re-reading what he wrote then, to change my mind. BUT...

What has happened to him?
Blair, to give him his due, is an expert on African affairs. He was born there, he knows how things work there. When it comes to Ukraine, he is clearly like a fish out of water. But... His latest two pieces show that there is hope for all journalists. Blair seems to have learnt a few things over the past 2 years.
Imagine my shock when I read this in The Telegraph -

Ukraine is a great European state. Lest we forget, it is still at war
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/06/11/ukraine-is-a-great-european-state-lest-we-forget-it-is-still-at/
....Thanks to the predatory ambitions of Vladimir Putin, Ukraine is the sole European country that is waging war on its own soil. And Kiev has a very 20th century ritual: the daily announcement of the communiqué from the front. At 12.30 precisely, Colonel Andriy Lysenko, a lantern-jawed military spokesman, reads out the latest news from the east, where Ukrainian troops are fighting battles of attrition with Russian forces and their local allies, who occupy about half of the neighbouring regions of Donetsk and Luhansk.....
The “people’s republics” of Donetsk and Luhansk are the unrecognised orphans of Europe. Russia props them up with weapons, troops and money, but has declined to follow its own example in Crimea and actually annex them. Mr Putin does not want to bear the full cost of the bankrupt statelets he has created by force of arms....


I nearly choked on my museli that morning!
And then a colleague sent me a link to a second article -

100,000 flee 'worsening oppression' as Russia tightens grip on Crimea
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/06/11/100000-flee-crimea-as-russia-tightens-grip/
...Arrests and unexplained disappearances have become routine in Crimea. No-one is regarded with greater suspicion than the Tatar minority, a 230,000-strong community viewed as the original inhabitants of the territory. ...
.But in April this year, ... 183 people contacted the charity to ask for assistance. Another 97 did so in May. "There is an atmosphere of fear in Crimea - that's why citizens feel forced to leave," said Ms Tasheva....


What was going on? I laid down on the sofa, and took long deep breaths. Blair, the clown from the Telegraph (when it came to Eastern Europe), was writing intelligent, sensible, AND truthful things.
Why ? Anybody's guess. But, whatever, I congratulate him.
It all goes to show - a leopard can change his spots. And having been born in Malawi, Blair must have seen some big cats in his time.
There is hope for us all )

===
N.B.
By way of comparison -
Look at this from 2014 !!
Ukraine must correct its chaotic response
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/ukraine/10885410/Ukraine-must-correct-its-chaotic-response.html
A heavy-handed military operation is alienating the very people Kiev should be winning over....
...we cannot simply place the burden on Vladimir Putin to end the killing....

[Yes - you read that correctly - Blair (in 2014) thought that Putin wanted to end the killing! ]
So Mr Poroshenko .... should be told to conduct this offensive sensibly – or cancel it altogether.

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Re: Journalists reporting on Ukraine - the good, the bad, and the ugly

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