We’ve heard a lot about Fake News throught 2016 and so far this year, according to those authoritarian types in the USA, who dishonestly style themselves ‘liberals’, Fake News is anything that was critical of Hillary Clinton and the Democrats, or anything that was supportive (even slightly so), or not totally biased against Donald Trump. Surrporters or impartial reporters of Bernie Sanders, Clinton’s rival for the Democratic nomination, were similarly accused of using Fake News to discredit the Clinton campaign.
Since then Fake News has spread to government itself, being no different of course to the political propaganda that has always been with us. Stories of Russia meddling in the Brexit vote, the US election and most recently the French presidential election, while widely reported, are not backed by any credible evidence. But this effort to mislead the public is not new. And the main players in the news industry of the western democracy re the leading exponents it seems.
After TV news reporter Amber Lyon was fired from CNN in 2012 for objecting to the company’s censorship of news unfavourable to third world dictators whose regimes were allies of the USA, the reporter decided to expose to public scrutiny the network’s censorship policies and its highly selective reporting of which dictators needed to be removed from the world stage, while suppressing information that might embarrass those foreign dictators willing to pay for favourable propaganda.
When Amber and a four person crew were sent to the Gulf in 2011 to report the “Arab Spring” uprisings in Bahrain in order to produce a one-hour documentary they ended up discovering that chemical and conventional weaponry being used by the regime were supplied by the United States. The documentary was never made; sources went missing or were arrested and faced brutal punishments, one even had his house burned down.
At one point, Amber reported, the team was detained by 20 government thugs and held them at gun point while their captors deleted their photos and video. They managed to conceal some video data in their underwear and upon return to the USA had a 13 minute segment on for CNN America, entitled iRevolution.
To Amber Lyon’s dismay the footage never aired on CNN International, the most watched english speaking news source in the Middle East and most appropriate audience for this news. Questions flared as to why it was censored and reportedly the Bahrain regime was paying exorbitant funds to CNN to kill the segment.
Now see Amber Lyon talking about her experienes of CNN’s censorship policies.
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