Who Can You Trust?

January 19, 2015 § 54 Comments

“Propaganda is the deliberate, systematic attempt to shape perceptions, manipulate cognitions, and direct behavior to achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist.” — Jowett & O’Donnel

War in Ukraine, beginning with the assault and annexation of Crimea and subsequently enlarged via proxy ”separatists” to include Donbass as well as sabotage and terrorism in other parts of the country, is undeniably the product of Russia. Without Russia’s involvement there would be NO war in Ukraine.

However, Russia, who demonstrably and actively train, support, equip and supply the so-called ”separatists”, vehemently deny ANY involvement in the conflict. Equally bizarrely, Russia act as ”mediator” between the sides – the criminal and unrecognized terrorist ”states”, and Ukraine – while keeping Ukrainian civilians, soldiers and a Ukrainian MP and PACE delegate, Nadiya Savchenko, as prisoners and prisoners of war, hostage in a war to which it is, according to Putin, Lavrov and Churkin, not a party.

Meanwhile Ukraine is fighting, desperately, righteously and according to the lawful mandate its constitution and international law decree, to regain its territorrial integrity and to restore peaceful governance.

There can be no question that Ukraine is under illegal attack by Russia and her criminal proxies, no question that Ukraine has every right to defend itself and her sovereignty. This however, is often called into question – by Russia, and by her supporters. Some of these supporters are found among the Western press, and quite a few among Western politicians and public figures of various stature.

“Propaganda becomes ineffective the moment we are aware of it” –Joseph Goebbels

Apart from the actual war waged against Ukraine, Russia is also waging a very powerful information war, against Ukraine and against Western democracies in general. The information war is every bit as real as the shooting war, and the frontline is drawn on your TV screen, on your laptop, on your smartphone – in your mind as it were.

Focussing on the journalists – the frontline information warriors that produce content for websites, magazines, newspapers, newscasts, YouTube vids and what have you, without whom the media outlets would stand naked for want of pictures and commentary – it is important to know who you can trust to deliver factual, substantiated and objective news rather than hearsay, pure lies and disinformation intended to mask or distort actual events and actual facts.

In certain cases it is easy enough to find the liars: virtually all Russian media outlets are state owned and/or managed by people who support Putin’s regime. Very few independent Russian media remain, and the last bastions of free thought and speech are hard pressed to toe the party line lest they be shut down like their brethren. TASS, Rossiya One, RT/Ruptly, ANNA News… all these are completely in Putin’s fold and should not be trusted to deliver anything but the opposite of the truth (which indeed can be used to extrapolate some element of truth). Visit StopFakeNews if in doubt of Russia’s overt propaganda.

Lies, allegations and desinformation
Yet not all of the ”false flag” journalists – citizens of western democracies – are outright liars. Instead, they specialize in spreading disinformation and utilize a disingenuous language designed to spread confusion, dread and defeatism.

The main task of these peddlers of subversion and propaganda is to disparage, ridicule, question and criticise Ukraine’s efforts to regain its territorial sovereignty, to promulgate selected lies and half-truths, to lay smokescreens of baseless allegations and to incite uncertainty and fear among Ukrainians and defenders of Ukraine.

Some, certain or large parts of their reporting consist of bona fide reports and simple retweets of innocuous tidbits. This serves to build trust and confidence. Their true colours, however, shine through during bouts of very high military activity when they will spout disinformation and raw lies for days on end – and get away with it, because they have already won your confidence.

These journalists seldom speak the direct lie: there is always an unnamed ”source”, a ”trusted contact” or anonymous witness to spreak for them, making full use of words that allow semi-believable but always unsubstantiated ”facts” to emerge: actions or reports are ”alleged”, things have ”supposedly” happened, someone is ”purported” to have said, or something is ”said to be”…

Thus works the non-factual reporter, he/she who can always drape him/herself in the cloak of ”I’m merely reporting”. Be on the look-out for these tell-tale words, and do not rest, or believe in anything, until you have proof positive that it has actually transpired as reported. More often than not, it has not. These same individuals will report again and again in negative terms about Ukraine’s army, its morale and whatnot of which they have little or no idea, and all the while fail to report about the composition and origin of Russian troops and materiel which surround them as they wander freely in ”rebel” territory…

Western Journalist’s Hall of Shame
So, without further ado, here is my personal Hall of Shame of western journalists who, in my opinion, have proved themselves less than trustworthy. I advocate unfollowing of most if not all of them, or, at the very least, a very careful reading of anything they post. Here are the winners, in my subjective order of magnitude, with incriminating details below:

List 1: Your Typical LieNews/RT/Ruptly goons

  1. Graham W Phillips
  2. Patrick Lancaster

List 2: Useful idiots and false flag operatives, in no particular order

  1. Oliver Carroll
  2. Alec Luhn
  3. Harriet Salem
  4. Maxim Eristavi
  5. Shaun Walker
  6. Will Vernon
  7. Gulliver Cragg
  8. Christopher Miller
  9. Roland Oliphant
  10. Andrew Roth
  11. Bojan Pancevski
  12. Kristina Jovanovski
  13. Maximillian Clarke
  14. Noah Sneider
  15. Henry Langston
  16. Max Seddon

@GrahamWP_UK Graham W Phillips
This despicable, sorry excuse of a Putinist worm needs no further presentation. A RussiaToday operative, GWP is simply too odious for this world. Anyone retweeting Graham’s tripe without proper condemnation or challenge is in my not so humble opinion automagically a douchebag. Sorry for the harsh language, but there it is.

gwp2

@PLnewstoday (Patrick Lancaster)
Patrick Lancaster appears to be a freelance stringer peddling pro-Russian, Ukraine-bashing tripe and spin from behind “rebel” lines. Sidekick to horrid twerp G W Phillips. A given no-follow, insta-block, never-RT <invective>. In the post below he falsely portray the illegal sale of free humanitarian aid as “subsidized groceries.” Thanks Myroslawa and Lola for bringing him to my attention.

 Skärmavbild 2015-01-20 kl. 17.29.05

@olliecarroll Oliver Carroll

“There is a logic behind the DNR push. The economy of DNR is not viable…” “DNR” is a terrorist construct managed by GRU. It has no economy: it is part of Russia. Get it? Ollie doesn’t, or pretends otherwise. Yes, Oliver spends weeks and months among ”rebels” yet fails to report on atrocities and war crimes, yet doesn’t spot a single Russian soldier or piece of equipment. Below, Ollie posts propagandistic and defeatist pieces of conversation with an unnamed Ukrainian soldier right in the middle of Ukraine’s offensive to regain parts of Donetsk airport. Currently one of the most active propaganda founts whose ”reports” yield retweets galore by pro-Russians, propagandists and others less discerning. I strongly advise against following or retweeting this fellow.

Addendum: I’ve been catching a lot of flak for putting Oliver on this list, so let’s have another look shall we? His latest offering “Inside the Bloody Battle for Donetsk Airport” illustrates my case perfectly. You would be excused to expect a picture of the “Cyborgs” to go along with the article, however, we are greeted with a trio of happy “rebels” instead – or “Pro-Russian separatists” (tellingly without the citation marks). That alone is enough to raise MY hackles, but you may be inured to the paradox already. He then goes on to paint a bleakly desperate canvas of distress, defeat and devastation – fine, that’s what ultimately transpired, yet, the take home message is that “the Ukrainians” are done for, down and out. He even weaves in an alleged phone call to an alleged British reporter who allegedly calls an alleged deputy defence minister (in Britain? Ukraine?) who allegedly proffers relief. Riiiight. Totally believable. Woe be us!

Some of you may feel uplifted by a tale of glory and heroism, for that is what Donetsk symbolizes, yet the insidious message is one of defeatism and despondency. Oliver’s article is studded with non-critical reference to rebels, separatists, rebel leaders and rebel commanders – all without citation marks – and Oliver again refers to the POW parade that was staged for the cameras as if it was real. Now, as far as I can tell, Oliver is embedded with the “rebels” yet signally fails to spot the professional Russian soldiers, VDV specialists and other supporting troops who finally pushed in to deliver the coup de grace after 243 days of siege. Not once did he walk up to the gun and MLRS crews to ask them where they come from or who supplied the thousands of tons of hardware that wrecked Donetsk airport, despite hearing and probably seeing their discharges day and night throughout his entire stay in Donetsk. If you don’t think that’s funny or the least suspicious you really need your head examined. Finally, has Oliver visited the mythical “Sasha” at his “rebel” hospital bed? A picture should suffice to kill the suspicion that “Sasha” and Slavik are merely figments of Oliver’s vivid imagination.

The only mitigating factor in this intellectual debacle is that Oliver is perhaps too suave for his job, as his reports may in fact have reverse effect on the target group. But that’s an occupational hazard I guess. I’m merely sad that so many good people are duped by his reports. Now, back to your scheduled load of propaganda.

Carroll

@ASLuhn
Well-known Moscow troll clearly rooting for ”rebels” and happy to spread biased trash like the one below. You don’t have to dig deep into his timeline to find the most odious rot.

ASLuhn

@HarrietSalem
VICE News operative Harriet Salem spent weeks in ”rebel”-held Sloviansk posting worshipping tweets and articles, yet failed to notice executions, rape and indiscriminate shelling of civilian housing. See tweets below. Her noxious reports cast serious doubt on other VICE reporters, such as the nigh-untouchable Simon Ostrovsky.

Salem1

@MaximEristavi
Kyiv-based reporter with a grudge against Ukraine, principally the government’s tardiness in combating decades of corruption and graft. That Ukraine is fighting for its very survival seems to be of little consequence to Maxim, who prefers to come down hard on miniscule rightwingers in Ukraine, all the while conveniently ignoring Russia’s hordes of nazis…

MaximEristavi

Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 17.07.10

@shaunwalker
Well known propagandist, Shaun is happy to hobnob with murderer Strelkov and assorted ”rebel” scum. Put a lot of distance between yourself and this horrid creature. I have been criticized for being too harsh in my judgement of “respected” journalists such as Shaun: well, I invite you to judge for yourself – his tweets speak volumes, and if you don’t find them offensive then please consider your own moral compass.

ShaunWalker

Skärmavbild 2015-01-22 kl. 14.36.27

@BBCWillVernon
An unashamed Putinist who is happy to uncritically “report” about stuff that happens in Moscow and elsewhere, which incidentally promotes a pro-Russian view of the world.

WillVernonBBC

@gullivercragg
Gulliver Cragg reports for France24 and is frequently cited by other agencies and networks. Likes to spread disinformation, despondency and distrust about Ukraine government. Takes every chance to denigrate Ukraine and spin things according to the Kremlin narrative.

cragg

@ChristopherJM
Christopher Miller, posts sentimental rebel-supporting drivel, attempts (innocently or naively, you be the judge) to shift blame for the war and suffering onto Ukraine. Also fails miserably to find or post evidence of Russian involvment. Chris is mainly content with reposting top news immune to disinformation attempts and will not engage in overt propaganda, although he is happy to retweet Oliver Carroll, AS Luhn and others. Nevertheless, I don’t trust the guy any more than I would a pick-pocket.

@RolandOliphant
Roland spreads disinformation (innocently? uncritically at any rate) and speaks, disparagingly in my opinion, of Ukrainians. Failed miserably in the run-up to Russian invasion to find evidence of troops and materiel, despite tons of reports and videos. Retweets Ollie Carroll’s propaganda and generally posts in Russia-biased language. A top-level operative who is only brought out during particularly critical phases.

Oliphant

OliphantLavrov

@ARothNYT
Andrew Roth at the New York Times writes a pitiful pro-rebel article, retweets Ollie Carroll and other cited propagandists. Another high-level operative that is relatively hard to pin down with actual lies.

@bopanc
Bojan Pancevski is a low-key low-volume propagandist who plays a minor role in pushing a Kremlin narrative. Pushes uncritical dross and sundry, including the post below.

Bojan

bojanmh17

@kjovano Kristina Jovanovski
Kristina, a Canadian freelance journalist with a background from Al Jazeera and a host of international news agencies, is currently in Donetsk, behind “rebel” lines, to cover the “conflict” to the best of her abilities. At the moment, there is not a whole lot to suggest that she is actively supporting a Russian narrative, though retweets of other journalists and pro-Russian sources skews the picture. My suggestion is to be wary and treat her reports with skepticism, for the same reason as for most others: offhand reports and observations that lend credibility to or sympathy with “rebels” while casually and insidiously shifting blame onto Ukraine for doing its best to secure its sovereign right over Ukrainian territory must be deemed subversive. Selected tweets below.

Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 16.05.16 Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 16.04.43 Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 16.04.18

@MTIClarke Maximillian Clarke
A London-based photojournalist, seemingly part of the coterie surrounding and retweeting G W Phillips, currently returned to “rebel”-held Donetsk. Clarke shoots pics and video of combat and suffering in general and seems happy to do so without further inquiry as to whom exactly is doing what. Could be “local separatists”, could be “Russian volunteers”, could be anyone but regular Russian army troops. Like other “discerning” journalists, Clarke is quick to pile blame onto Ukraine for defending against Russian aggression, and signally fails to spot actual Russian hardware, the Russian logistics chain or the Russian troopers milling and speeding about Donbass. Selected tweets below.

Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 17.01.04Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 16.49.53 Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 16.45.46 Skärmavbild 2015-01-21 kl. 16.45.20

@NoahSneider
Stringer/writer/tag-along Noah Sneider is part of the “Glory Gang” comprising Shaun Walker, Chris Miller, Roland Oliphant, Ollie Carroll, Alec Luhn et al who tweet and retweet each other’s pieces and snide comments like there’s no tomorrow. Like all of these “gents” Noah is careful to toe a perceived balance between outright Ukraine-bashing and outright rebel-glorification, however, once you’ve sold your morals it’t not very hard to determine who Noah is really rooting for. Proof positive? Read his latest piece of muck in the otherwise discerning The Economist. You don’t have to look far to spot the bias, the rebel-loving tune, the Ukraine-bashing intent.

Skärmavbild 2015-01-30 kl. 15.39.16

In the first tweet below, Noah witnesses a POW parade without mentioning that it was entirely and carefully staged for the cameras and the journalists – of which he was one.

Skärmavbild 2015-01-30 kl. 15.22.52

Skärmavbild 2015-01-30 kl. 15.20.00

@Henry_Langston
Henry is a well-known video journalist at VICE NEWS specializing in conflict reporting, lamenting civilians and craters. He ran a decent series of clips from Syria/Iraq covering ISIS and Peshmerga, and has covered Russia’s war against Ukraine on and off since summer 2014. Now back in Donbass he is taking up where Simon Ostrovsky left off – however, with a considerably more devious storytelling technique. In his latest dispatch, #90, he covers the desperate situation at Debaltseve, sparing no effort to lay blame on Petro Poroshenko and the Ukrainian government for.. what, allowing Russian regular army troops and their hired goons to shell the place round the clock? For not evacuating the civilians, despite constant Russian bombardment? For not supplying civilians with water? Distraught civilians, brainwashed by a Russian propaganda blitz, spit at their president and their troops in the midst of Russian shelling! This is the message Henry conveys, and it’s not a pretty one. I strongly advise unfollowing both Henry and VICE.

Skärmavbild 2015-02-04 kl. 16.23.09

@maxseddon
Max is a frequent tweeter but has not, until now as far as I know, come out swinging fully for Russia. He makes up for his previous low-key profile in spades, in this article. Read and weep as he digs deep in the “separatist” soil to find “bona fide seps” to act as fig leafs for THE VERY ACTUAL AND HIGHLY PRESENT REGULAR RUSSIAN FORCES currently laying waste to the Debaltseve area. Note that the introduction has been altered to give the article a somewhat less obvious propagandistic touch. The article no longer reads “Ukraine’s bloody and callous attempt at regaining its eastern provinces..”, but apart from that, it’s the same pitiful dross.
Skärmavbild 2015-02-14 kl. 13.40.20

So, who is Max Seddon? I don’t really know, and his LinkedIn bio doesn’t tell much, except that he’s in Russia Federation and has a year of something at AP in Moscow to his “credit”. No, I don’t trust AP or Reuters one bit.
Skärmavbild 2015-02-14 kl. 13.42.34

On the watch-list:

@parfitt_tom
I cannot actually remember why I reacted to TomParfitt’s posts, but there was some kind of dissonance that alerted me. Now mainly out of Ukraine reporting, he may surface at a later date. So, let’s keep him on the list for now.

If you have any name or piece of “evidence” to add to this list, please comment or send me an email. You should know where to look. Thanks to anonymous contributors.

For further reading about propaganda in general, have a look here.

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§ 54 Responses to Who Can You Trust?

  • Leon says:

    Just read Graham Philips is actually a Ukrainian undercover spy coming from MI6. He is in contact with secret NATO military command sending them GPS data all the time plus other valuable info.

    Sounds like a kid story but I have it from a trusted colleague in Ukrainian government. And it could explain his fanatical onesidedness as well.

    Wow, that would be some news!

    • jkylander says:

      I’d rate this as extremely improbable given GWP’s extremely active conflict-aggravating behaviour in Sloviansk and elsewhere. He really goes out of his way to create the most despicable propaganda.

      • What the heck do you call propaganda? Graham reporting lies? Graham sees the horror just like I’ve witnesseded it during my 8 day trip to the front lines. Except he sees it everyday, and he has much more nightmares than I did when I came back from Donetsk. Of course he has the right to shape an opinion after covering so much bombings of the innocent civillians by Ukrainian punitive forces. This idiot who posted this wordpress blog obviously hasnt the slightest idea of WTF is going on because he was NEVER on the ground inside Donbas, and I bet you weren’t either. But I was jkylander, and I’ve seen those dead bodies, burning as we passed by the shelled buildings behind the Airport in Kievskiy district, shelled by UKRAINIAN forces with all of Western media CLOSING THEIR EYES TO THIS. Yet screaming JeSuisCharlie in Paris. Pathetic.

      • jkylander says:

        You seem to ignore the fact that Russia *has* invaded and *is* invading Ukraine. I don’t need to be in Ukraine to notice that. But hey, thanks for your perspective.

      • Allow me to ask you, what basis do you have for Russia INVADING Ukraine? All the MSM which is controlled by 6 corporations like CBS, Viacom, Newscorp, Time Warner/Comcast, GE and Disney? Which are deeply in the pocket of Washington and are absolutely biased and State Department controlled? Give me one satellite image of Russian army in Ukraine. Give me one video of Donbas National Army soldiers exchange one of the Ukrainian captives for a RUSSIA SPEZ NAZ or Russian NATIONAL captive in Ukrainian Armys hold? None exist for some reason. Even though the Ukrainian media is full of not even propaganda, but fabricated ingestions of FAKES in the media news stream. Did you ever consider that AMERICA invaded Ukraine and its soverign interests FIRST? By sponsoring a coup d’etat of a democratically elected President Yanukovich? Ukraine is a soverign nation able to decide its own fate without interference of others, BUT US INTERFERED FIRST, and sponsored the Maidan, the Right Sector force element, this is all documented with Victoria Nulands leaked conversations and press interviews. Lets go back even further, Its no secret that CIA’s project Nightingale launched in early 1950’s to built the first Ukrainian Ultra-Nationalist army with the goal of de-Russification and Russophobia did take place! Hello? Are you gonna think critically or what? US interfered in the fate of Ukraine on Russia’s doorstep with the Maidan and Orange revolution and has been trying to meddle with that country intensively for at least last 6 years! read the first paragraph this is the official site of US-Ukraine Foundation – http://www.usukraine.org/polic… , and Russia doesn’t have the right to defend its interests in that area? Your view of things is absurd! CIA project Mockingbird, where to THIS DAY, CIA continues to employ its double agents as top chiefs, editors and producers of American mainstream media outlets across all frequencies has definitely paid off by brainwashing your brain sir. Wake up and smell the coffee. Your claims and viewpoints on Ukraine are as biased as Western MSM and don’t take into account the START of the conflict and WHO actually started it. If America didn’t stick its nose up everyones ass in the name of this manufactured false narrative called “freedom and democracy” then Ukraine would be perfectly fine right now, because right now, EVEN WESTERN UKRAINE IS SCREAMING that financially and psychologically it is MUCH WORSE than it was with Yanukovich. Get that through your head please.

      • jkylander says:

        You get A for effort, F for effect. Try harder.

      • Outta boy jkylander, thats the way to reply to a bunch of facts that just slammed you in your face. Don’t worry, one day you’ll remember this, and appreciate it.

    • Geo says:

      While this cannot be ruled out completely I’ll say this does not fit with Graham’s psychological profile. On the other hand his constant anti-Kiev pro-Kremlin rhetoric does quite well. Let’s just say he’s been pretty consistent throughout this whole year of conflict, I’ve seen no sudden sways of opinion, no giveaways in his past statements that would indicate he was actually working for a greater cause. He used to sound mostly like a useful idiot blabbering anti-US platitudes and as soon as Maidan started he was on Yanuk’s side. He now sounds like a Kremlin mouthpiece and I’d argue that’s a very easy step to take.

      For him to be some sort of NATO sleeper agent is a too difficult exercise of imagination.

      • jkylander says:

        Graham was instrumental in disseminating highly destructive propaganda during the Sloviansk crisis, in effect buying vital days for Girkin’s lot by muddying the waters about who was actually doing what there. No deep cover operative would act so brazenly and duplicitously, sacrificing real people’s lives like that. In a two-penny story book perhaps, but not in real life. He’s a dyed-in-the-wool tool for Russia. Period.

  • Tim Gallagher says:

    there was a report on channel 4 (Uk) 2 days ago where they talked about “the civil war” in Ukraine.
    don’t know who the reporter was turned it off as soon as I heard that crap

  • Mike says:

    http://www.interpretermag.com/life-of-bryan-how-an-rt-columnist-tries-to-influence-the-debate-on-russia-and-ukraine/

    Please add Brian Macdonald – another pseudo-hack-cum-RTspert — -frequently name dropping War Criminal Graham Phillips (the more repeated the phrase, the more ‘Googlable’ his new title will become folks)

    • jkylander says:

      I suppose I should since I mention GWP. Both of these are fundamentally Russian mouthpieces and thus not actually in the “Western Journalist” category at all, yet may appear as such by casual/inattentive observers. On second thought, I gather Brian/Bryan isn’t really a journo but rather a source, or conduit. Thanks for bringing him up.

  • […] appear in the semantics of war, why is truth so conspicuously absent in the narrative as told by supposedly unbiased western reporters? Why is this erroneous fiction about “rebels” and “separatists” upheld in […]

  • Mat Babiak says:

    Author has an axe to grind, lists 10 great journalists along with a handful of really bad pro-Russian “journalists”

    attempt to discredit western journalists who do a legitimately good job?

  • loklok says:

    Please add some of Germany’s Der Spiegel staff, foremost Benjamin Bidder; also Pavel Lokshin (https://twitter.com/lokshin, who recently posted an anti-Ukrainian article there). Avoid also German television, die Zeit, Süddeutsche. FAZ/faz.net is best, Welt/welt.de is so-so.

  • loklok says:

    Add contributers from news agencies to your list (Reuters, AP, AFP, DPA) as they do must harm at the moment! They try to be “objective” at all cost and implicate Ukraine is as guilty as the separatists (of course, Ukraine is more guilty than Russia). For example
    Alessandra Prentice: https://twitter.com/alessaprentice/status/562653226630397953 and the article http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/02/03/us-ukraine-crisis-army-idUSKBN0L71PW20150203

  • Thanks for the list of excellent journalists. There might be someone I had missed among those few which reports the truth about what is going on in Ukraine in English. For the author of this blog, I have only one recommendation – educate yourself by reading some books by scholars on the subject of Russian-Ukrainian history and relations plus the plan for the New World Order being implemented by the bankers behind USA and the EU. I recommend the following authors and books:

    Stephen Cohen: Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War (Especially chapter 7)

    F. William Engdahl: Full Spectrum Dominance: Totalitarian Democracy in the New World Order
    and, by the same author: “Gods of Money: Wall Street and the Death of the American Century” and “Myths, Lies and Oil Wars”.

    G. Edward Griffin: The Creature from Jekyll Island

    Joseph Plummer: Tragedy and Hope 101: The Illusion of Justice, Freedom, and Democracy (if you don’t feel for reading the original Tragedy and Hope by Carroll Quigley)

    M.S. King: The War Against Putin: What the Government-Media Complex Isn’t Telling You About Russia

    Zbigniew Brzezinski: The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives

    You can find them again listed here: http://www.therussophile.org

    Reading them might help to give you a new perspective, or, even if you will not get it, bring some more authority to your blog.

  • Jim Kovpak says:

    With the exception of Graham Phillips who is literally a propagandist and a sociopath, it seems to me your beef with these other respected journalists is that they fail to support your slavishly one-sided narrative.You remind me of a Kremlin supporter. I hate to tell you this, but objective reporting means sometimes things aren’t going to go along with your talking points. Acknowledging the humanity of ordinary people in separatist region doesn’t absolve Russia of its crimes- if anything, it condemns them even further.

    Before you begin whining and crying, could you tell me how much time you’ve spent in Donetsk or the ATO area and give us your evidence to refute the reporting of people like Caroll, Walker, etc.? If you haven’t been there, why don’t you go get some credentials and get better info?

    • jkylander says:

      All I ask of anyone is to judge for him/herself on basis of the reporters’ own communications and published offerings. You are free to hold your own opinion, as am I. In the case of Oliver Carroll, the burden of proof lies on him – not on me. The latest article illustrates that in abundance.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        Actually no, the burden of proof lies on you because you are making claims about these people being propagandists and you are criticizing the veracity of their reporting without giving us any reason to believe you have all the facts. How much reporting have you done from Ukraine? Are you Ukrainian? Can you speak either Ukrainian or Russian? Have you ever even set foot in Ukraine?

      • jkylander says:

        Your reading comprehension may need an upgrade. Perhaps you live in a country where criticism or free commentary isn’t allowed? Do you think there’s any difference between writing from a hotel room in Donetsk and a room in Wherever?

      • Geo says:

        Jim you can’t be serious. Burden of proof? The author presented his case and presented his arguments. You’re free to disagree with him (as I do in the case of many in the list). The whole discussion is pointless. Accusing him he hasn’t met the burden of proof test is your way of saying his arguments don’t convince you. The burden of proof test can be invoked not when the arguments & evidence doesn’t convince, but when they’re completely absent, and the author of the claim asks the opponents to prove the falsehood of the claim.

        Oh the other hand your claim that anyone outside Ukraine should have no opinion or say is pointless. There’s plenty of information coming out of Ukraine, from both sides, that anyone with a critical mind can decide what’s BS and what’s not. And sure, there is propaganda material coming from both sides (some unintentional, lots of it, IMHO from one side predominantly, very much ill intended). It’s up to each one of us who follows the conflict closely to try and discern BS from truth, as much as it’s humanly possible.

        I don’t speak Russian or Ukrainian, but I follow a lot of sources in both languages and try my best to understand at the very least the gist of the stories using all the tools I can, from automated translation tools to reliable translations that I can find (eventually). For that matter in my twitter feed I have numerous messages in other languages too — German, Finnish, Turkish, Polish, etc. I try to understand most of them. Does not knowing a language disqualify me from appreciating the contents of the messages?

        I also never laid foot on Ukrainian soil though I almost did once back in the Soviet era (trip to Moldova, was supposed to include leg in Ukraine, cancelled at the last minute). Does that somehow not allow me to care about the country or have an opinion about the going-ons? Sorry but you seem a lot more rational than that. Sure, not everyone reaches the same conclusions as everyone else, for various reasons, but you cannot tell ANYONE they shouldn’t speak or having spoken should be disqualified because of lack of proximity to the country or culture.

  • Jim Kovpak says:

    Furthermore, all you have done here is pick out things from certain reporters which you don’t like because they contradict your hopelessly binary worldview. The only one there who can literally be called a propagandist is Graham Phillips, who openly supports the separatists.

    • jkylander says:

      The vehemence with which you defend their tweets and articles – which is what I present for anyone’s judgement – is rather telling in itself.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        ” Perhaps you live in a country where criticism or free commentary isn’t allowed?”

        Did I say that your commentary and criticism should be banned? You’re free to criticize, but I’m free to say that your criticism is largely unfounded, myopic, and quite frankly infantile. The only other people I know who can’t fathom any possible criticism against their side’s actions are Russian regime-supporters. Freedom of speech is not freedom from criticism. If you say stupid things, you will be called out on it.

        ” Do you think there’s any difference between writing from a hotel room in Donetsk and a room in Wherever?”

        Uh yeah, there’s a HUGE difference. I also notice you keep skirting around my very simple questions:

        How much time have you spent in Ukraine? Do you have a working knowledge of ANY of the languages in Ukraine, so as to get a representative sample of information? You ask us who to trust? Why should anyone trust you?

        It’s ridiculous how every time a journalist doing their job happens to contradict your personally contrived narrative of a perfect, blameless Ukrainian government, you try to label them as a Kremlin “false-flag” journalist on par with Graham Phillips. Were you not aware that almost every journalist on that list has been routinely attacked by pro-Russian posters for being “Western propaganda agents” waging an “information war?”

        Perhaps you don’t know, sitting up their safe and sound in Sweden, but in spite of the war going on in the East, not all Ukrainians are satisfied with their current government. Maybe they’re all Kremlin workers too right? Fifth columnists! Traitors! Where have I heard that before? Oh…Right. Russia.

      • jkylander says:

        Thanks for your input. Again, the journalists’ output is the determining factor, not where *I* happen to be posting from. FYI I have not spent one minute in Ukraine but have followed events there every day since Maidan via Internet, same as everyone else that isn’t actually there. You will also note that I’m not commenting on anything specifically written in any language but English, which I have passable command of.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        Again, you are simply looking at the part of their output which makes you angry because it conflicts with whatever you’ve been reading on the internet. That begs the question, what frame of reference did you have to trust those sources? Do you just automatically trust the first people you get in contact with?

        Also I’m not physically in Ukraine but I can understand Ukrainian and speak Russian, ergo I can read material, information, and discussions which you would have no access to. I think what you need to understand is that the internet does not make everyone’s opinion equal.

      • jkylander says:

        Read Ollie Carroll’s latest piece for Newsweek again and tell me you disagree with my analysis.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        Again, the analysis of a person who has never been to this country and can’t speak any of the languages doesn’t interest me.

      • jkylander says:

        Must I remind you that Carroll’s text is in English? I think we’re done here.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        So? You have no frame of reference for criticizing it.

      • jkylander says:

        That’s rich. Thanks for the laugh.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        You realize you just admitted that you’ve never been to this country, you can’t speak the languages, and everything you know is from internet sources in languages you do understand, and for some reason decided to trust uncritically?

        Are you upset to be reminded that the internet doesn’t give you expertise?

      • jkylander says:

        You’ve said your piece, now go back to your cave. We both know where it’s at, don’t we?

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        Yes I have, and the gallery can decide once they stop laughing at you.

      • jkylander says:

        I’m honoured to have been visited by such an omniscient being as you.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        And thanks to you for providing me with some hilarious material.

  • Good list, but not enough says:

    Good list I can get behind, but don’t understand why Oliver Bullough isn’t on it, considering that he is busy digging into “Ukrainian corruption” while completely disregarding a murderous war being waged against the country. Undermining Ukraine in what is surely the toughest time in its history. Plus I think he spent time reporting from Crimea which could give you some clues as to why he is suddenly in an anti-Ukrainian camp. Just a smug, completely obnoxious, know-it-all who cloaks his anti-Ukrainian rhetoric in self-righteousness. He’s also on a list of internet “russophobes” but don’t let that fool you (I actually think that list was designed as a means of getting people to seem objective when they’re anything but).

    Bullough has a pal, Natalia Antonova (they retweet each other all the time), ex Moscow News head, pretty, preening, poisonous thing, seen in Guardian, Moscow Times, Mic, HuffPost, etc. Whined about the evils of “russophobia” in OpenDemocracy. Wrote a treacly, pathetic piece tying lack of Russian air safety to MH17 (as if it had anything to do with besides their Buks). Don’t see her as an operative, more of a useful idiot who gets ahead/fawned over by the in-crowd based on looks and charm. Now that crisis is affecting Russia, she has been shedding tears for poor little Russian cancer patients and sick children without their medicines, completely oblivious to how resolve against Russia should actually be hardened at this time. She should be on this list for her pathetic “russophobia” piece alone. Retweets odious troll Carroll all the time and I wonder if they’re in a relationship which would make a lot of sense.

    Kevin Rothrock, Gobal Voices RuNet Echo, actually stoops as low as to interview well-known pro-Russia trolls and provocateurs. Absolutely vile, immoral, pro-Russian, a travesty he’s not on this list. No list about Western journos who should be ashamed of themselves should be complete without this guy.

    Anna Arutunyan, ex Moscow News, pals with Antonova and Rothrock, reports for USAToday, utterly pro-Moscow though tries to play innocent. Wrote some kind of book about Putin, rightfully savaged by Masha Gessen.

    Nataliya Vasilyeva at AP is also disgusting. Probably most disgusting since these are the people who as it is pointed out above are trying to appear “objective” (i.e. anti-Ukrainian but actually seeming as though their propaganda purely “fact-based”). A cute little thing just like Antonova, so not surprising she has risen to prominence based on her looks (as opposed to merit or intelligence). Dangerously charming, of course. Also reported on Crimea extensively before heading to Donbas. She seems to be pals with the lot of them. Always tirelessly pushing a pro-Russian agenda, in fact, she is one of the worst because she is so subtle. At this point, it doesn’t even matter if she’s paid for it/aware of it, all that matters is that “reporters” like her should not be trusted by a discerning audience that is out to get the whole picture.

    Mark Galeotti, absolutely vile tool of Russian propaganda, alleged “analyst” and “academic,” who has been downplaying Russia’s role in the conflict since day one. His trick is pretending to be reasonable, unbiased, and even critical of the Kremlin while still subtly spinning facts in Moscow’s favor. I don’t think he’s ever called a so-called “separatist” a terrorist (which is what they are), in his life. Disgusting human being, very subtle and clever, pals with everyone on this list.

    All of these people can be easily found on Twitter. The in-crowd is much bigger than you think.

    • jkylander says:

      i concur on all but Mark Galeotti whom I respect, on the proviso that I haven’t followed him as closely as the others. Still plenty of room for surprise and false flag operatives. I regret I cannot cover them all.

      • Jim Kovpak says:

        It’s so funny watching you morons who have no idea what you’re talking about judging and discussing people with real life experience and qualifications.

      • I appreciate your good work on countering Kremlin disinformation and psy-ops. But the way this list is growing, and the gusto with which you are ready to include new items ‘on the spot’, makes me think it might be wiser to place ALL journalists and commentators dealing with Ukraine and Russia on the shame list FIRST, and then take them away only when you find that their writings have long displayed continuous, clear and verifiable evidence of ideological purity. A stamp of approval must be created! I’m sure Mark Galeotti would eventually end up on the list if you follow him closely and suspiciously enough (he at least once appeared on RT)! If you fail to do this, the gullible masses might live on in the dangerous illusion that there is actually some kind of difference between the ‘journalism’ of Graham Phillips and, say, that of Maxim Eristavi (who I didn’t know was Western before you told us), Oliver Bullough, Natalya Antonova, Ingmar Nevéus, and the rest of the Kremlin’s Gremlins – fluffy and liberal on the outside but vicious fanged monsters below the surface. Please help us! Only you can unveil their true nature!

  • […] This guy’s in a goddamned La-z-Boy recliner.  As a general rule these people tend to take Russia’s side, but here we’ve got a Swedish dude who decided to go all in on Maidan and the Ukrainian government for some unknown reason. I say unknown because it turns out he’s never been to Ukraine and apparently everything he knows about what’s going on comes from English-speaking sources on the internet as he admittedly has no understanding of Ukrainian or Russian either. […]

  • […] are the actors in this farce? It is your trusted journalist. It is your trusted editor. It is your ”trusted” politician and policy maker. It is your […]

  • petros says:

    Galeotti – yes, absolutely. He is in the category “subtle”. Recently, it has been: “I am objective – but the Ukrainian army is worth sh.. ” He was all over the Central European Press when it was discussed whether the Ukrainian army should receive weapons or not a few days ago, see for example: Polish Gazeta Wyborcza (Poland would be one of the handful of EU-states that actually would deliver weapons): http://wyborcza.pl/1,75477,17327919,Ekspert__Ukraina_ma_tyle_broni__ze_nie_wie__ %20co_z_nia.html#TRNajCzytSST and Czech Echo24.cz: http://echo24.cz/a/iSZe2/ukrajinci-maji-zbrani-dost-ale-neumeji-valcit-soudi-expert (core message: Ukrainians have enough weapons, but they do not know how to fight – i.e. Ukrainians are not capable to run their own affairs).

    Category “propagandist”. I strongly recommend Mary Dejevski from the Guardian. She is a “member of the Valdai Group, invited since 2004 to meet Russian leaders each autumn, and a member of the Chatham House thinktank” (I do not have to be more specific on their apologist stances toward Russia). Propaganda of the worst sort: “show me evidence for the presence of the Russian army”, the Russian president wants “peace”. Some examples for her work are: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/feb/19/western-diplomats-cynicism-putin-ceasefire-misread-motives, http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/jul/07/fear-ambition-moscow-ukraine-russia-putin and http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/apr/11/russian-arms-buildup-ukraine-propaganda-war-nato

    Category “naive” (“we still do not know what is going on in Ukraine”, “I am trying to be objective”, “better I do not think/write about it, otherwise I might get problems in my job”). One example is the correspondent of the Swiss daily NZZ in Moscow Daniel Wechlin. Writing still about “separatists”, absolutely ignoring Russian interference, listing the absurd statements of Putin’s puppets alongside official Ukrainian statements. Never asking questions.
    For example how does it come Zakharchenko announces 100.000 persons are mobilized – and some days later, we have an announcement of a law project in the Russian Duma to set free some 100.000 prisoners? (http://top.rbc.ru/politics/18/02/2015/54e48ad59a794751701327a6)
    See DW’s latest piece: http://www.nzz.ch/international/europa/abermals-schmerzliche-niederlage-kiews-1.18486206. With the highlight: in Ilovaysk Ukrainians lost against the separatists; maybe he even does not know that he is spreading lies. He at least could claim it as there has been no “official proof” of the Russian invasion, besides the material some crazy bloggers publish on the internet (http://ukraineatwar.blogspot.ch/search/label/Ilovaisk).

    I also would like to name one trustworthy western correspondent in Moscow – all others seem to have been brainwashed: Boris Reitschuster (http://reitschuster.de/). But he also avoids to expose the Russian military involvement in Ukraine. Apparently, those based in Russia know that there are topics you better do not write or talk about (Russian casualties, content of the “humanitarian convoys”, exercises of the Russian military on a weekly basis etc.). You better avoid them in order not to get in some kind of trouble. Interestingly, Julia Smirnova, Die Welt’s correspondent in M., admitted this last week implicitly in an article.

    • jkylander says:

      Great additions, thanks. There is certainly a surfeit of parrots and shills, as well as intentionally/unintentionally naive people and useful idiots, enough to fill a library. It has become quite a sport to name them.

      Hardly anyone who embed with the Russians is to be trusted, and those who remain in situ, e.g. in Moscow, must be treated with a lot of skepticism for the fact that they would hardly gain access to pressers and quotable sources if they didn’t toe a very specific line. Job security, always in the van.

  • petros says:

    I forgot to add Top-10 German Putinist Jakob Augstein, son of Der Spiegel founder (has an own media outlet “der Freitag”, but also is allowed to spread his America-/Jew-hatred and love for Russia in Der Spiegel/SPON, e.g. http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/malaysia-airlines-mh17-und-putin-jakob-augstein-ueber-die-schuldfrage-a-982680.html or http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/ukraine-jakob-augstein-ueber-das-abkommen-von-minsk-a-1019297.html). Should be arrested for sedition.

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