The New Observer Uncategorized Propaganda Watch (monthly round-up)

Propaganda Watch (monthly round-up)

1. The 112 pro-Moscow deputies in the US Congress

This is a reasonably good article in the Guardian about how people near the front-line (on the Ukrainian side) in Ukraine feel. It emphasises that Putin is trying to “reclaim historical lands”. This is the preferred explanation in the Western media for the war, because it covers up the NATO provocation. (Personally, I can’t understand why the Kremlin allows this narrative to flourish and doesn’t focus on the strategic question of NATO membership of Ukraine; possibly in any war it becomes normal to try to stir up patriotic feelings). But, the reason I’ve included this article in my propaganda monthly round-up is not this; it is this line: “The six-month delay in US military aid – caused by pro-Moscow House Republicans in Washington – cost Ukraine dear.” I’m just interested in the sheer propaganda of calling Republicans who voted against the package “pro-Moscow”. I haven’t done a detailed analysis of the position of those who voted against the package but a frequent line which was reported was that they (the Republican opposition) felt that there are more important problems to solve, such as the US’s immigration problem. Well-known Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene spoke out forcibly against intervention in foreign wars, at one point condemning “murdering” people in foreign lands. In general, the opposition may be linked to the “isolationist” vision of US Foreign Policy, a view that it is just not the job of the US to get involved in organising the whole world. This vision, somewhat but not entirely aligned with Trump’s “America First” vision, is in antithesis to the ideas of liberal internationalism, which believes in endless interventions to try to bring countries into the orbit of the US led international liberal global system. This is presumably why the liberal interventionists have to mischaracterise it as “pro-Russian”. That really is shameless propaganda. As so often these days, in the failing politics of the West, they don’t try and engage with the counter-view; instead they (liberal interventionists) try to block it, exclude it as invalid, and shut it down. Ironically, this is far from the democratic liberalism they claim to represent.