Guardian propaganda (101)

by on June 6, 2017 in Media Comment

One of the Guardian’s propaganda writers in Moscow has been discharged by a court after attending an illegal rally.

Mr Luhn was arrested in March when he attended an illegal rally in Moscow – held by convicted fraudster Alexei Navalny. Alexei Navalny is one of those public figures in Russia who command fractional support inside Russia but are touted by the Western media as the “opposition” to “Putin”.

In Russia rallies have to be sanctioned in advance by the authorities – or they are illegal.

Mr Luhn was arrested at the illegal rally in March and was released shortly afterwards. [1]

The Guardian report on Mr Luhn having his charges dropped is a nice example of how the Guardian (and other Western media) spin these stories. Nothing in the story is as it stands factually untrue. But by placing the weight in various ways, emphasising aspects, omitting other facts and so on they manage as always to create the story they want to tell. Here, the subheadline for the report is “Alec Luhn was detained by police while covering a protest in Moscow organised by opposition politician Alexei Navalny” –  which fits nicely with the idea of an outrageous arrest at a legitimate political rally. Later in the article they admit that the rally was illegal. (In fact the authorities offered alternative locations which were declined by the rally organisers, though these, admittedly were probably in the suburbs and would have denied them the publicity they are seeking). [1] So; the fact is there but by introducing it only as a detail half-way down the article after the clarion call headline has already had its impact the propaganda writers manage to shift the story from facts to the creative narrative they want to tell. This is characteristic.

They also claim that people at this rally were arrested “at random”. Which sounds quite sinister. But is in fact the police arresting large numbers of people who were breaking the law. In this article at least the Guardian does not mention that the authorities accused the rally organisers of deliberately involving teenagers in their illegal protest. [1] Or that a policeman was badly injured. [1] There are of course always two sides to a story  – but we can be sure that when it comes to Russia and the Guardian 90% of the time we will only get one.

Notes

1. https://www.rt.com/news/382342-opposition-protest-russia-police/

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