The American propaganda campaign being waged against the Russian Federation and its president Vladimir Putin has reached a stage of perverse perfection. It is virtually impossible to put forth a dissenting opinion that will be accepted or considered worthy of consideration. The Democrats are leading the charge to silence and censor and they are getting buy-in from people who otherwise consider themselves to be progressive.
This columnist has been interviewed on Radio Sputnik on two occasions. That fact should not be at all noteworthy but in the current atmosphere of Russophobia being pushed by the corporate media and Democratic politicians, it is a risky statement to make. Sputnik International is a Russian government entity, just as the BBC is “state run media” on behalf of the British government and the CBC for Canada. But anyone and anything connected to Russia gets the double standard treatment and is targeted for attack.
Marcus Ferrell was until recently a campaign staffer for Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams. He resigned after the Atlanta Journal Constitution revealed that he had been a guest on the program By Any Means Necessary which is hosted by Sputnik. Ferrell didn’t discuss Russia at all. Confederate monuments were the topic of conversation. But the level of fear is so great that he felt compelled to resign. His boss made no effort to fight against the tide and she didn’t defend him either.
Every day a new shoe drops in this faux scandal. Twitter announced that it would not accept advertisements from Sputnik or RT, formerly known as Russia Today. Sputnik had never even paid for ads on Twitter but why be bothered by facts when ginned up phony outrage is so readily available.
It is Democrats who demanded that Facebook and Twitter stop telling the truth about Eastern European click bait schemes and instead join in that party’s witch hunt. Now we are told that Russian social media posts meant to influence American politics reached 126 million people on Facebook over a two-year period. Of course the last paragraphs of that story reveal that only one out of 23,000 pieces of content actually reached anyone. That fact is too inconvenient and makes for a bad headline.
While social media giants are submitting to marching orders, the state and corporate sponsored Public Broadcasting System (PBS) produced its second anti-Putin documentary in as many years. First “Putin’s Way” in 2015 and now “Putin’s Revenge” feature so-called experts who outdo one another in stoking anti-Russian flames. PBS can never seem to find any expert who can make counter arguments.
While the corporate media compete to see who can dumb down the country the fastest, the legal wheels are turning to get Trump out of office and Russia is the pretext for the action. Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort has been indicted for tax fraud. His indictment is just the beginning of the bipartisan effort to end the Trump presidency. They hope to resume doing the elites’ business without hindrance from the man who is so bad for the neoliberal brand.
Nothing matters to liberals more than getting Trump out of office. Their juvenile political understanding was turned upside down by Hillary Clinton’s defeat and they haven’t been the same since. They are obsessed with the man they hate. They have been fed a steady diet of red meat which explains away their illusions about the failed Democratic Party and the fact that millions of their fellow citizens don’t see the world the way they do.
Paul Manafort was a long time Republican Party operative going back to the days of Ronald Reagan’s presidential campaign. He used his connections to become a lobbyist, a hired gun for governments ranging from Nigeria to the Philippines to Kenya to Romania to Ukraine. Manafort would not be facing serious legal jeopardy if he hadn’t taken on that particular gig.
We are told that Ukraine’s former president, Victor Yanukovich, was “pro Russian” and that Manafort’s representation proves Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign. Neither statement is true but no one knows outside of the small circle of people who make herculean efforts to educate themselves about world affairs.
As the old saying goes, the fix is in. Manafort is just the first notch on former FBI Director Robert Mueller’s gun. He will go after other Trump connected cronies and relatives who have done shady business but that won’t be the reason for the pursuit. There are many sleazy American lobbyists and business people but no one cares until there is a moment when their downfall is politically useful.
Free speech is being undermined, the left are losing their access to media and prosecutors are going after crooks, but not because they want justice to be done. If Putin was trying to destroy America he couldn’t do a better job than the media, crooked politicians and the deluded liberals who all work together.
Margaret Kimberley’s Freedom Rider column appears weekly in BAR, and is widely reprinted elsewhere. She maintains a frequently updated blog as well as at http://freedomrider.blogspot.com. Ms. Kimberley lives in New York City, and can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgendaReport.com.