Obama Moves to Stifle Press Freedom of RT
Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova began Thursday’s press briefing with a statement regarding a comment by the US State Department that RT will no longer be treated on the same ‘level’ as other news outlets.
It came after a RT journalist asked for evidence to back up the department’s allegations that Russia hit a number of hospitals in airstrikes in Syria. It also claimed Moscow blocked humanitarian aid from reaching conflict zones.
Zakharova said, “Is this a new means of segregation? This separation of the media by ideology?”
“I want to remind my colleagues at the State Department that there are American journalists working officially in Russia. I see some of them here regularly. Would you like them to experience this kind of attitude even once? I don’t think they would be happy about that – but trust me – I can do that too. If there’s such an attitude toward RT in Washington again, there will be a special place marked out for American journalists here,” she added.
Brian Becker, Answer Coalition, national coordinator, told RT that “perhaps it is about the exchange in the State Department where the State Department spokesperson Kirby loses his temper and says actually what all officials are saying to themselves or to each other in private, which is that RT or any media or any journalists associated with Russia shouldn’t be treated the same.”
“Kirby said it out loud, in public and it is a real embarrassment. Because Kirby’s assertion that Russian media or Russian journalists are decidedly just a mouthpiece for Russia is premised on the fact, that it is a state-owned company. And he said RT reporters ‘are not like the rest of you in the room,’ appealing to the other journalists who are with the so-called free press,” he continued.
“But if you look at CNN, or MSNBC, or the Washington Post, or the New York Times or any of the independently – that is, corporate-owned – media in the United States they are all an echo chamber of US propaganda and that way it is completely outrageous. Kirby… broke a taboo by speaking publicly what they say to each other. In fact, there’s a war going on, a war against any alternative media, in this case, the Russian media, because it’s effective and because millions of Americans are depending on it because they are sick and tired of the corporate-owned media… as an echo chamber for the Pentagon or for the US government,” Becker added.
According to him, “they are at war with RT, they are at war with Sputnik, they are at war with Ruptly, not because it is ‘weaponized’ information, but because it really is an alternative media source.”