BBG Watch Commentary – “BBG Media Highlights” are distributed by the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) – a U.S. federal agency.

We re-post “BBG Media Highlights” without any guarantees of their completeness.

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Today we recommend from “BBG Media Highlights” The Moscow Times citing RFE/RL reporting on U.S. senators who want to expand the Magnitsky Act. The bipartisan bill was introduced in the U.S. Senate as draconian anti-democratic legislation was passed by the Ukrainian Parliament under the control of President Yanukovych’s pro-Russia allies. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) said in a statement: “Gross violators of human rights from Zimbabwe to Ukraine, and Honduras to Papua New Guinea, are put on notice that they cannot escape the consequences of their actions even when their home country fails to act.”

See: “Cardin, McCain Introduce Global Human Rights Accountability Act,” Ben Cardin, U.S. Senator for Maryland, Jan. 16, 2014.

As surprising as it may be, the Voice of America English did not report on this U.S. Senate bill or on the State Department’s reaction to the passage of anti-democratic legislation in Ukraine. VOA used a report from Reuters on the Ukrainian Parliament action. It includes a European reaction but does not mention the U.S. State Departments expression of “deep concern.” The outdated Reuters report is still on the VOA English news website.

See: “Voice of America main news website not reporting on State Dept. reaction to undemocratic law in Ukraine,” BBG Watch, Jan. 17, 2014.

Not in today’s “BBG Media Highlights,” but worth reading, is: “Katya Gorchinskaya: Welcome to Little Russia” in Kyiv Post.

The best U.S. media report on Ukraine in today’s “BBG Media Highlights” and worth reading is “Harsh anti-protest laws in Ukraine spur anger” by Will Englund in The Washington Post. It includes references to all recent U.S. statements and news developments on which the Voice of America English website failed to report.

Obviously the Broadcasting Board of Governors is paying much more attention to the events in Ukraine that the Voice of America main English news website.


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BBG Media Highlights – January 17, 2014
Citations of BBG Networks

— North Korea may have enormous reserves of minerals and rare earths. Time quotes Voice of America interview with Korean studies researcher.

— Wall Street Journal includes RFE/RL’s report on Iranian Intelligence Minister’s aversion to corruption allegations in its corruption roundup.

— The Korea Times cites Radio Free Asia reporting on co-produced movie between North Korea and the United States.

— The Moscow Times cites RFE/RL reporting on U.S. senators who want to expand the Magnitsky Act.

— UPI cites VOA reporting on China’s detention of economist Ilham Tohti, a supporter of the rights of Uyghurs. Europe Online quotes Radio Free Asia reporting that Tohti was uploading his views on Xinjiang to popular social networking sites.

Of Interest

— 84 cases of violence against media freedom in Afghanistan during 2013.

— Why audio never goes viral.

— U.S. sanctions “have a crippling impact on technology and communication” in Sudan.

— Skype will share user data with Russian authorities.

— #ThingsIloveaboutSouthSudan

— Ukraine passes sweeping anti-protest legislation, including law that forbids protesters wearing helmets. Here’s one response.

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The Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) is the independent federal agency that oversees all government-supported U.S. civilian international media. The mission of the BBG is to inform, engage and connect people around the world in support of freedom and democracy. Networks within the BBG include the Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the Middle East Broadcasting Networks (Alhurra TV and Radio Sawa), Radio Free Asia, and the Office of Cuba Broadcasting (Radio and TV Marti).  BBG programming reaches an audience of 206 million in more than 100 countries and in 61 languages.