The “European Values” Think-Tank and Their List of “Useful Idiots”

Share

Hits: 1445

Just when you think that the Russo-phobic hysteria of the Western world couldn’t possibly make itself any more ridiculous…something like this comes along. This is the europeanvalues.net list of “useful idiots”.

The list is very long, over 2300 names, because it contains the name of every person to ever appear on either Sputnik or RT. Hosts or guests, hostile or friendly, it doesn’t matter. If you’re on the list, you are a useful idiot.

They’ve highlighted some names in yellow, to denote they’re “particularly noteworthy”. Names receiving the yellow highlight – the Russian agent equivalent of twitter’s blue tick – include Harrison Ford, Stephen Fry and Senator John McCain. All noted for their pro-Russian public stance on important political issues.

Also on the list are Boris Johnson’s dad, Barack Obama’s wife and John McCain’s daughter. And while all three of them may well be idiots, I’m struggling to see how they’ve ever been useful to anyone.

It’s honestly beyond a joke at this point. But let’s take a look behind the scenes anyway.

The Think-Tank

The not-at-all Orwellian sounding “European Values” think-tank is a Czech based NGO focusing on fighting…

…aggressive regimes, radicalisation within the society, the spread of authoritarian tendencies and extremist ideologies including Islamism.

Their about page goes into a lot of (vaguely creepy) detail about their logo, in case you were interested, but much less detail about their funding. If you want to know that, you have to read their annual reports.

In 2015, for example, you can see that they received funding from disappointingly predictable list of sources. The European Union, the US Embassy, the UK Embassy and (of course) the Open Society Foundation.

One day, it would be really nice to read the “Our Funding” section of an NGO’s website, and NOT see George Soros’ name.

The Author

The author of the list and accompanying report is one Dr. Monika Richter, a first generation British citizen and child of Czech immigrants. She’s a new face at the programme, having recently graduated from Oxford, where she studied at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. The Reuters Institute receives funding from various sources, including Google, the BBC and…*sigh*…George Soros.

Interestingly enough, when Richter was at Oxford she spoke at the Free Speech Debate, arguing against the “no-platforming” of certain speakers because it could be used to censor unpalatable views.

Quite when she changed her mind on this issue, I do not know.

The Report

The fifty-three page long report that accompanies the list is both terrifying and hilarious, with some beautiful paranoid language that reads like the journal of Jack D. Ripper. I have read it, so you don’t have to (you’re welcome)…but if you really feel the need then here it is. It is a masterpiece of doublethink.

In one paragraph she smoothly segues between three points: 1. That Russia illegally “invaded” Georgia; 2. That RT’s “biased coverage” blamed the war on Georgia; 3. That the EU’s own report stated Georgian aggression was a prime factor in causing the conflict. Apparently she is totally unaware that her third point completely undermines points 1 and 2.

Later, she claims that RT employs “conspiracism” to spread insidious messages that undermine public faith in Western government.

For example, RT is accused of spreading the “conspiracy” that the US and UK started the Iraq war under false pretenses – when, far from being a “conspiracy theory”, the WMD-related lies are now an historically accepted truth. Only neocon diehards even try to deny that any longer.

The report also claims that RT spread conspiracy theories about “false flags” which, again, are a point of historical fact. And that RT reports, stating that the US and their allies are supporting ISIS in Syria, were untrue. In fact, these reports have since been shown to be absolutely correct.

She also rails against RT’s reporting of the Ferguson riots, in which they apparently:

revealed a consistent refrain: “the oppression of blacks in the US has become so unbearable that the eruption of violence was inevitable”, and that the US therefore lacks “the moral high ground to discuss human rights”

Now, personally, I’m struggling to see how that statement is inaccurate, but maybe I’m just indoctrinated beyond all hope at this point.

The best parts of the report come when the author is forced, by the unbending hand of reality, to make concessions. These include:

RT does not (typically) lie outright in its reporting, it presents facts in a way that distorts the reality of the situation and leads viewers to certain conclusions.

And:

For the sake of fairness, it must be acknowledged that despite these malign intentions, RT has enjoyed a small handful of journalistic accomplishments. For example, its coverage of the Occupy Wall Street movement, the Guantanamo Bay hunger strikes, and the 2010 WikiLeaks scandal was incisive, with the former two earning RT International Emmy Award nominations

Which, in a beautiful demonstration of intellectual dishonesty, is quickly followed up with:

However, the critical point here is that RT’s treatment of these events is not motivated by a genuine commitment to principled, balanced journalism, but rather by opportunism to demonise the US government for its apparent contradictions and democratic shortcomings.

You see? Even when their news coverage is good, and nominated for international awards, and tells important truths, none of that counts because they’re doing it for the wrong reason.

She apparently wants us to believe that telling the truth for the wrong reason is just as bad lying. Worse even, when you think about it, because your unabashed use of fact-based arguments lends a seeming legitimacy to your incorrect world view.

It is absolutely bonkers.

Some of the other highlights include:

RT disguises the malicious objectives of this editorial strategy by claiming to uphold traditional liberal-democratic ideals like free speech, critical journalism, and independent thought. RT’s shrewd perversion of these principles through rhetorical ploys like the ‘Question More’ ad campaign – which appears to advocate media literacy, critical thinking, and reasonable scepticism about media content – can seem highly convincing to the untrained eye.

By saying the wrong things RT is “perverting” free speech. The principle of free speech only applies to those with state-approved motives who say state-approved things. By disagreeing with that state-approved consensus you are, actually, perverting your freedom and therefore should have it taken away from you.

If the arguments that multiple points of view are important, and that journalistic integrity and free-speech demand the broadcasting of unpopular opinions, sound convicing, it’s only because you’re not well trained in picking up sedition and propaganda.

Not only that but:

RT uses guest appearances by Western politicians, journalists and writers, academics, and other influential public personalities to boost its credibility. Regardless of their intent, these appearances amount to complicity with the Russian propaganda machine, and thereby render its influence that much harder to counter. RT is not a neutral media platform; per point 1, its raison d’être is to disparage and demoralise the West at all costs, and all content it airs is calibrated to serve this purpose. Thus, even guest appearances made in good faith – e.g., motivated by the desire to offset some of RT’s more toxic and hyperbolic narratives – are counterproductive.

This explains the presence of John McCain on the idiot list, I suppose. Ms Richter seems to think that, even if you go on RT to criticise Russian foreign policy, or call RT biased, or defend the US viewpoint, your very presence reinforces the illusion that RT is a TV news channel, when it’s just a Kremlin disinformation centre. By airing contrasting points of view from every side, RT is able to maintain a pretence of impartiality.

You see, RT are not objective, so they have to pretend to be objective by allowing people to disagree with them on air. CNN and the BBC et al ARE objective, so they don’t need to pretend to be, so they DON’T have to allow people to disagree with them on air. By extension, the more differing opinions they broadcast, and the wider variation of opinions they broadcast, the more show themselves to be unobjective.

The logic is flawless.

None of this matters anyway because:

While the security hazard of the Kremlin’s disinformation campaign and influence operations should not be taken lightly, it is imperative to not overinflate the threat of individual influence agents like RT and Sputnik. Such a reaction is counterproductive: it further empowers these agents, allowing them to claim excessive success and consequently obtain more funding from the Kremlin to expand their operations.

So there you go, even if RT appears to be a serious undermining or our society and values, they actually have no real power and shouldn’t be overestimated. The important conclusion of this 53 page report that an NGO spent 100,000s of dollars on, is that we shouldn’t over-react.

One wonders how long the report would be if she had over-reacted.

If I was George Soros, I’d want my money back.


Originally published on 2017-10-24

Author: Kit

Source: Off Guardian

Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.

Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!

Donate to Support Us

We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.

[wpedon id=”4696″ align=”left”]

 
READ MORE!
Marti Ahtisaari and the Waffen SS
In 1999, when he was the President of Finland, Marti Ahtisaari’s government wanted to honor and to commemorate the 3,000 Finnish Nazi Waffen SS volunteers that served in Heinrich Himmler’s SS. Why would any government, indeed, why would anyone, want to honor and commemorate SS troops? Why would anyone want to honor and commemorate Nazis and Nazism? This is the question that has remained unanswered in the US and Western media about Marti Ahtisaari. As a sock puppet for the US, NATO, and EU, Ahtisaari’s role in honoring and commemorating the Nazi Waffen SS has been suppressed. As a Chairman ...
READ MORE
Study: U.S. Regime has Killed 20-30 Million People since WWII
IntroductionAfter the catastrophic attacks of September 11 2001 monumental sorrow and a feeling of desperate and understandable anger began to permeate the American psyche. A few people at that time attempted to promote a balanced perspective by pointing out that the United States had also been responsible for causing those same feelings in people in other nations, but they produced hardly a ripple. Although Americans understand in the abstract the wisdom of people around the world empathizing with the suffering of one another, such a reminder of wrongs committed by our nation got little hearing and was soon overshadowed by ...
READ MORE
The Demonizing of a Nation
For centuries, the strategic Balkan Peninsula has featured as a slice of Europe over which wars have been fought, treaties made and broken. It became a vital pawn in the carve-up of nations after World War i, had the boundaries of its ethnic enclaves confused under Tito’s regime, then its various nationalist feelings taken advantage of and played against each other in the latest push for its colonization by the EU. In this latest process, one nation has been demonized in the mind of the public: Serbia. In the words of British political economist Rodney Atkinson, “The grossest calumny in the continuing ...
READ MORE
How Fascism Won Control in The West
"The West" is the nations that are essentially controlled, basically dictated-to, by America's approximately 600 billionaires, who control the U.S. Government, by coordinatedly funding (through their news-media and political donations, and also by their members-only private conferences) the careers of cooperative politicians, and who thereby defeat the politicians who act against increasing the percentage of the nation's wealth that these few people hold, and against increasing their extractions from everybody else. (Those non-compliant politicians are derisively called "socialists" and equated with the communist Joseph Stalin instead of with the democratic socialist FDR and the leaders of the democratic socialist Scandinavian ...
READ MORE
Nightmarish Global Military Agenda
Warring hotspots all over the world are flaring up in 2016 in what amounts to preparation for World War III between the military forces of the US led Western Empire against the forces of the Eastern axis led by Russia and China joined by Iran and North Korea. Let’s be clear – the globalists are the puppet masters behind the Western forces intentionally provoking catastrophic world war. We live in a time when the earth’s ruling elite has willfully created this foreboding, seemingly suicidal endgame scenario, using US Empire to prod, orchestrate, and push the world into two enemy camps in a West ...
READ MORE
“Je Suis CIA”
Note: This article was first published in January 2015.Since 9/11, the imperial playbook has consisted of a favorite and time-tested tactic: the false flag operation.Carry out or facilitate a spectacular atrocity. Blame it on the enemy of choice. Issue a lie-infested official narrative, and have the corporate media repeat the lie. Rile up ignorant militant crowds, stoke the hatred, and war-mongering imperial policy planners and their criminal functionaries get what they want: war with the public stamp of approval.Here we are again.The Charlie Hebdo incident is being sold as “the French 9/11”. It certainly is, in all of the most ...
READ MORE
The Real Reasons Why FBI Director James Comey Reopened the Hillary Email Investigation
This last Friday it became public record that FBI Director James Comey reopened the Hillary Clinton email server investigation after repeatedly testifying before Congress and the world up to last July that he’d closed the case, after in his words not finding sufficient evidence of “any criminal wrongdoing” to indict her in spite of her four years as Secretary of State egregiously breaching our national security:’ -committing obstruction of justice and willful tampering with evidence,-deleting 30,000 emails after receiving a court subpoena constituting destruction of evidence, -not to mention repeatedly engaging in perjury before Congress and the FBI.But obviously a federal investigation still in process in late June never stopped Bill Clinton’s illegal ...
READ MORE
Americans have Forgotten What We did to North Korea
Perhaps no country on Earth is more misunderstood by Americans than North Korea. Though the country's leaders are typically portrayed as buffoonish, even silly, in fact they are deadly serious in their cruelty and skill at retaining power. Though the country is seen as Soviet-style communist, in fact it is better understood as a holdover of Japanese fascism. And there is another misconception, one that Americans might not want to hear but that is important for understanding the hermit kingdom: Yes, much of its anti-Americanism is cynically manufactured as a propaganda tool, and yes, it is often based on lies. But ...
READ MORE
Did You Know: 9/11 & Larry Silverstein
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection & Pinterest. Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement! Donate to Support Us We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations. [wpedon id="4696" align="left"]
READ MORE
“Russiagate” is Actually “Israelgate”: Trump as “Agent of Israel”, not of Russia?
The Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s main evidence thus far in his “Russiagate” probe is not actually about possible Russian collusion with Trump to win the Presidency, but instead about definite Israeli collusion with Trump after Trump had already won the Presidency but before he became inaugurated. As a lawyer explained on the day when Trump’s former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was indicted in a plea-deal: “Mr. Flynn has just become the prosecution’s star witness.” What Flynn had pled to was his trying to obtain Russia’s support for Israel’s Government, against the Palestinians. Russia said no; Putin said no to Flynn’s request, ...
READ MORE
America’s Forever War Strategy
America is unique among history’s warrior states – prioritizing endless wars, not ending them to achieve a new era of peace and stability.The notion is anathema to the nation’s military, industrial, and media establishment. Wars are waged for power and profits, no other reasons.All post-WW II US wars were and continue to be acts of naked aggression against nations threatening no one – raping and destroying them, the human cost incalculable, the villainy unprecedented.Throughout its history, America has been perpetually at war at home and/or abroad, never a time of peace and stability – a shocking indictment of its abhorrent ...
READ MORE
A Croatian Role in the Destruction of Yugoslavia in the 1990s (I)
“Thousands joined a peaceful protest on Saturday in the Croatian town of Vukovar to express their anger at Croatian institutions for their “silence” over war crimes committed during the 1990s war” (Balkan Transitional Justice, 2018-10-13). The following essay is my constructive contribution to the above article. Preface On the occasion of more than two decades of the end of the civil war on the territory of ex-Yugoslavia (1991−1995), it is necessary to reassess the real causes and cardinal perpetuators of Yugoslavia’s internal and external bloody destruction. In the western scientific literature of the “liberal democracy” scholars (like by the journalists and policymakers as ...
READ MORE
Israel is a War Criminal
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!Donate to Support UsWe would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.[wpedon id="4696" align="left"]Save
READ MORE
America’s Culture War Mercenaries
USAID is spending $300,000 to fight traditional Christian morality in the Republic of Macedonia.A reader passes along a government document putting out bids for a contract. Here’s the top of the document:Apparently the (former Yugoslav) Republic of Macedonia, a small Balkan nation that emerged from the breakup of Yugoslavia, is insufficiently progressive on LGBT issues. So the American government is spending $300,000 to undermine the traditional Orthodox Christian culture of the country. Excerpts from the document (emphases mine):Macedonia has ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the European Human Rights Convention. Through ratification of these human rights treaties, Macedonia has ...
READ MORE
The Albanian Question in the Balkans
Since the fall of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Albanians are among the main actors of instability in the Balkans. At the same time they are the most loyal servants of the US in the Balkans. The Greater Albania project, which dates back to the 19th century is an idea of the unification of all Albanians into one state. Namely, the Prizren League then demanded the recognition of the national identity of Albanians and the autonomy of Albania within the Ottoman Empire. Today, Albanians live in two countries Albania and Kosovo (Serbian breakaway southern province) and in neighboring countries. The scenario ...
READ MORE
Vietnam War Atrocities Committed by the US Army
Atrocities and war crimes are subjectively defined as acts of violence that exceed military necessity. All war includes atrocities. The stress of combat includes a build up of emotion during action that leads to vicious attacks on the enemy when the opportunity arises. American military units are trained and indoctrinated to avoid inhuman treatment of enemy combatants. Soldiers who violate the norms are prosecuted. This reduces but does not eliminate the problem. Photo of Vietnamese civilians killed by an American unit  Atrocities During the Vietnam War The actions of armies in war have seldom been as humane as the modern American military -- ...
READ MORE
Farewell Message from Donetsk to President Obama
Truth on the war in Euromaidan Ukraine in photos.The people of Donetsk sent a farewell message to ex-President of the US (POTUS) Barack Obama with proper photo evidence of the result of his policy in the region.See the truth not presented on any global Western corporate mass-media!Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!Donate to Support UsWe would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on ...
READ MORE
Turkey’s Political Agenda in the Balkans: Erdogan’s Islamic Influence in Bosnia
As Turkey’s President Erdogan runs out of money, he is now, more than any time before, using religion to exploit the Balkans, especially the states that are more susceptible to Islamic influence. Bosnia is at the fore of Erdogan’s ambitious Islamic agenda, where he is sparing no political capital or financial resources, even under his current economic hardship, to assert his influence and distance the country away from the EU’s reach. Obviously, the Bosnians cannot survive simply on being devout Muslims, with the youth unemployment rate at almost 60 percent. Turkey is unlikely to economically recover anytime soon, and Erdogan’s ...
READ MORE
Thank You, Edward S. Herman (1925-2017) – Tireless Champion of Peace
Edward S. Herman died on November 11, 2017, at the age of 92. Fortunately, it was a peaceful death for a supremely peaceful man. In all he did, Ed Herman was a tireless champion of peace.Ed Herman could be considered the godfather of antiwar media critique, both because of his own contributions and because of the many writers he encouraged to pursue that work. Thanks to his logical mind and sense of justice, he sharply grasped the crucial role and diverse techniques of media propaganda in promoting war. He immediately saw through lies, including those so insidious that few dare ...
READ MORE
The Thanksgiving Day and the Native Americans
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection & Pinterest.Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!Donate to Support UsWe would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics, and international relations.
READ MORE
Marti Ahtisaari and the Waffen SS
Study: U.S. Regime has Killed 20-30 Million People since WWII
The Demonizing of a Nation
How Fascism Won Control in The West
Nightmarish Global Military Agenda
“Je Suis CIA”
The Real Reasons Why FBI Director James Comey Reopened the Hillary Email Investigation
Americans have Forgotten What We did to North Korea
Did You Know: 9/11 & Larry Silverstein
“Russiagate” is Actually “Israelgate”: Trump as “Agent of Israel”, not of Russia?
America’s Forever War Strategy
A Croatian Role in the Destruction of Yugoslavia in the 1990s (I)
Israel is a War Criminal
America’s Culture War Mercenaries
The Albanian Question in the Balkans
Vietnam War Atrocities Committed by the US Army
Farewell Message from Donetsk to President Obama
Turkey’s Political Agenda in the Balkans: Erdogan’s Islamic Influence in Bosnia
Thank You, Edward S. Herman (1925-2017) – Tireless Champion of Peace
The Thanksgiving Day and the Native Americans
FOLLOW US ON OUR SOCIAL PLATFORMS
Share