by Caitlin Johnstone, Caitlin Johnstone:
So, you might want to sit down for this, but believe it or not the mainstream media is behaving in a way that seems somewhat untruthful.
I know! I know. I’m just as astonished as you are.
So you know that Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons scandal we’ve been talking a lot about lately? The one where evidence keeps piling up that the US, UK and France launched airstrikes against the Syrian government last year in retaliation for a poison gas attack which never took place, and then manipulated an ostensibly independent and international chemical weapons watchdog organization into covering it up?
Well, it turns out that bigtime news media outlets haven’t been all that interested for some strange and mysterious reason. But just today they broke the silence with a new report that mentioned the scandal, and they’ve totally spun it in a way that makes the US and its allies look good! Can you believe that?
And you’ll never guess what excuse they’re using to spin it. Never in a million, billion years.
Put a pillow down on the floor, because your jaw’s about to drop like James Le Mesurier: believe it or not, they’re blaming it on Russian disinformation.
MSM has been steadfastly ignoring the OPCW scandal, but AFP briefly breaks the silence to inform us that the OPCW leaks are being "highlighted" by "Moscow", and that unnamed "Western diplomats" say "the Russians and Syrians are trying to muddy the waters".https://t.co/CYx6noOqHQ pic.twitter.com/VAVFugRoVc
— Caitlin Johnstone ⏳ (@caitoz) November 25, 2019
AFP, which just as an aside is one of only three gigantic news agencies that are responsible for most of the stories you see in the mass media, has put out an article that has been picked up by multiple mainstream media outlets titled “Showdown looms over Syria chemical weapons probe”. The article deliberately frames the issue as one which has been “highlighted” by “Moscow”, and publishes a claim sourced to unnamed western officials that “the Russians and Syrians are trying to muddy the waters”.
“Moscow has consistently raised doubts over chemical attacks in Syria or insisted they were staged, and has recently highlighted a leaked report raising questions about a deadly chlorine attack in the Syrian town of Douma in April 2018,” AFP reports. “Western diplomats however say the Russians and Syrians are trying to muddy the waters about alleged attacks by President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.”
Never mind that the leaks themselves are intrinsically important and completely authentic, regardless of who’s “highlighting” them. Never mind that the leaks have been “highlighted” by many non-Russian outlets, ranging from small alternative platforms like my own here in Melbourne all the way up to as mainstream as the UK’s Daily Mail. All it takes is one Russian to talk about any issue of any kind and it can magically be spun as a talking point of Moscow, no matter how many westerners who have nothing to do with Russia are also talking about it.
The report’s author, Danny Kemp, has been spending time narrative managing about the OPCW scandal on Twitter as well. Kemp argues that WikiLeaks, who published a leaked internal email from the organisation on Sunday which challenges the establishment Douma narrative, doesn’t have trustworthy publications because WikiLeaks is associated with (you guessed it) Russia.