The reasoning behind the Biden administration sanctions remain factually unfounded. In true reality terms, it’s not so difficult to demolish the tabloid image of “Russia’s Disinformation Ecosystem.”
When it comes to questioning guests, Stephen Sackur is perhaps the toughest of BBC hosts. He nonetheless has limits, as exhibited on his recent show with Ben Hodges. On matters pertaining to Russia, Sackur and the BBC at large can be expected to be harder when interviewing someone with an opposite view of Hodges. An example is Sackur’s recent exchange with Vladimir Chizhov. In Anglo-American mass media, the opposites to the likes of Hodges don’t get anywhere near the same amount of airtime.
It’s no surprise that Sackur didn’t challenge Hodges on the latter’s rather disgusting comment, which very inaccurately downplays Russian suffering during WW II in opposing Nazism. Hodges made that remark in an exchange involving the pro-Stepan Bandera Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA) – an organization with extreme anti-Russian views. (This group was involved with the bigoted anti-Russian Captive Nations Committee, which led to the U.S. Congress approved Captive Nations Week.)
On the same show, Hodges was also not challenged on his one-sided observation that Ukrainian soldiers have been killed since the Minsk Protocol‘s signing, with Russia recently having a noticeable military buildup near the Ukrainian border. Concerning these circumstances, Sackur and Hodges omitted several otherwise key facets.
Since the Minsk Protocol, Donbass rebels and civilians have been killed by Kiev regime forces. The recent Russian military buildup came after (not before) the Kiev regime’s military buildup near the Donbass rebels. Russia’s non-lethal military move and follow-up Russian comments served notice that Russia isn’t going to permit an Operation Storm like scenario near its border.
All of these points are mentioned in my last Strategic Culture Foundation (SCF) article of this past April 14. Coincidentally, on the following day, the Biden administration announced sanctions against the SCF (as well as some other outlets), which include a vaguely worded (if not mischievous) threat against Americans who’ve written articles for that venue.
Like Aaron Mate, I’ve found it difficult to get any follow-up from the U.S. Treasury Department (USTD). My specific inquiry concerns the matter of what I as a U.S. based American citizen can and can’t legally do with the SCF.
At issue is this USTD excerpt: “As a result of today’s designations, all property and interests in property of these targets that are subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them. Additionally, any entities 50 percent or more owned by one or more designated persons are also blocked. In addition, financial institutions and other persons that engage in certain transactions or activities with the sanctioned entities and individuals may expose themselves to secondary sanctions or be subject to an enforcement action.”
Meantime, outside the U.S., Canadians (at least for now) and some others are able to write for the SCF without penalty. Isn’t America supposed to be representative of diversity and a free press? U.S. President Joe Biden said that he wants to unite Americans with different opinions. It seems more like he wants to unite Americans under a limited range of perspectives on some issues.
A case in point is the Biden administration’s rejection of Matthew Rojansky for a State Department position. Rojansky appears to have more in common with the Biden appointed Victoria Nuland than a pro-American/pro-Russian advocate like myself. It’s somewhat laughable to believe that Rojansky is too off the reservation for the Biden administration. The pro-Bandera UCCA actively lobbied against Rojansky.
Individuals thinking along the lines of Rojansky can at least get the consideration for a State Department position. On the other hand, folks thinking more like me have been negatively dismissed in U.S. political establishment circles, without a substantive supporting overview to that take. The situation is such that some (stress some) who might be in general agreement with my views, could feel a need to be “restrained” (for lack of a better word), in order to have an elite presence (however limited). With confidentiality respected, some others besides myself have privately made this observation.
An appeal supporting Rojansky by over a hundred people within the U.S. academic/foreign policy establishment concurs with my contention about him. I recognize a good number of these signatories and their biases (at different levels) against Russia. Regarding Rojansky and some of his defenders, refer to my Eurasia Review article of November 7, 2016 and SCF articles of April 24, 2019 and August 21, 2019.
There hasn’t been any evidence presented to conclusively show that the SCF is associated with the Intel wing linked to the Russian Foreign Ministry. Myself included, several others have said that their SCF submissions aren’t edited, along with not being told what to write in advance.
I know some of the other Americans who’ve written for the SCF to be decent people. In my opinion, they don’t deserve to be treated in the kind of manner exhibited by the U.S. government. During the Vietnam War, Jane Fonda visited North Vietnam without getting sanctioned by the U.S. government. The unannounced FBI visits to some SCF writers is an effort better pursued towards real criminals who pose an actual threat to society.
In a feature with the largely U.S. government funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), America’s Secretary of State Antony Blinken, decried support for the Russian government to have RFE/RL labelled a foreign agent. From the prism of their faulty biases, Blinken and RFE/RL conveniently ignore the earlier advocacy against Russian media with U.S. government approval.
The reasoning behind the aforementioned Biden administration sanctions remain factually unfounded. In true reality terms, it’s not so difficult to demolish the tabloid image of “Russia’s Disinformation Ecosystem”. Those individuals who’re uncritically harping on that presentation are mum, in addressing the blatant lies against Russia appearing on Facebook, Twitter and elsewhere.
Evelyn Farkas serves as a prime example, with her numerous mass media appearances which include the BBC. In these situations pertaining to Russia related topics, one will be hard-pressed to find Farkas put under scrutiny.
Among Farkas’ lying tweets, is the assertion that the Russian government had a bounty on U.S. forces in Afghanistan. At best, this is a very dubious claim that’s more likely untrue. Another lying tweet of hers states that Vladimir Putin poisoned Alexey Navalny. To date, no medical or other evidence has been made available to support that questionable claim – made more suspect by the kind of theatrical antics which Navalny and some of his core supporters have undertaken over the course of time.
I’ve readily attested that Farkas is flat out lying when she says (via Facebook and Twitter) that the Russian government interfered against her in the congressional election that she participated in as a candidate. The basis of Farkas’ claim is my placing an SCF article of mine in the Yonkers Tribune. I’ve repeatedly noted that submission being 100% my doing, without any goading from the SCF.
Given the inaccurate and predominating biases out there, it’s no surprise that Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have banned the SCF unlike Farkas. According to one source, the Twitter ban includes any attempts to hyperlink SCF material on Twitter.
The fix was already in the works against the SCF prior to last summer’s hoopla over that venue and yours truly. Beforehand, I was unsuccessful in placing the SCF at News Now (NN). I was successful in doing likewise with Eurasia Review (ER). As was true with the Yonkers Tribune, my submitted proposals to NN were done without any prodding from ER and the SCF. Hence, there’s a clearly established pattern of independently minded communication activity.
ER is more diverse than the SCF. That facet doesn’t serve as a good justification for NN to rebuff the SCF. NN has carried content from the Kiev regime controlled Ukraine situated Euromaidan Press and StopFake venues. These two outlets are definitely not more diverse and accurate than the SCF. In varying degrees, the same can be arguably said of some other venues picked up by NN.