BBG Watch Commentary

VOA Screenshot 3-2-14Executives of U.S. taxpayer-funded Voice of America (VOA) were completely unprepared for coverage of U.S. responses to the Russian military intervention in Ukraine.

It took VOA three days to issue a first news report on U.S. foreign policy positions which can be seen as somewhat fuller than what little (and late) VOA had been posting earlier, but still far from being comprehensive in presenting U.S. policies and positions.

Meanwhile, Russia RT and Voice of Russia keep posting dozens of new reports and commentaries each day with strong propaganda themes and anti-U.S. messages.

Ironically, Voice of Russia has been faster and more comprehensive in reporting on some of U.S. statements from the White House and the State Department, probably in an effort to show that the U.S. is interfering in the situation in Ukraine.

Voice of America Report

US: All Options on Table in Ukraine

Michael Bowman

March 02, 2014

The crisis in Ukraine is consuming Washington’s attention, with the Obama administration issuing stark warnings to Russia over its seizure of Crimea, while Ukraine mobilizes military reservists and accuses Moscow of declaring war.

With Russian troops deployed in Crimea and the threat of war in Eastern Europe growing by the day, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry condemned Russia’s incursion.

“A brazen act of aggression in violation of international law, in violation of the U.N. Charter. It is a 19th century act in the 21st century.”

Kerry spoke on ABC’s This Week television program.

His words echoed those of NATO officials and major U.S. allies. NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen stressed “the rights of the people of Ukraine to determine their own future without outside interference.”

Before departing for Kyiv Sunday, British Foreign Secretary William Hague said violations of Ukrainian sovereignty “cannot be the way to conduct international affairs.”

Moscow says it is acting to protect Russian citizens and sympathizers in eastern Ukraine, a goal Kerry said can be accomplished without the use of force.

“We ought to be able to work this out through the diplomatic process,” he said. “If Russia chooses not to, there will be serious repercussions,” said Kerry.

The secretary stressed that “all options are on the table” to deal with the situation.

Also appearing on This Week, Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger said America’s diplomatic “reset” with Russia has failed.

“Now it is time to respond with strength. I think it is time to talk about economic sanctions, it is important to talk about aid to the Ukrainian people, to have Congress on the record supporting the inclusion of Georgia into NATO,” Kinzinger said. “Talk about, ‘Look, Russia, if you want to threaten your neighbors, including Ukraine, we are going to talk about the expansion of NATO.’”

Other U.S. lawmakers say an upcoming G-8 summit should be moved out of the Russian resort city of Sochi, which hosted the Olympics last month. The United States and several EU nations have either pulled out of G-8 summit preparations or called for those efforts to be suspended.

Some of RT and Voice of Russia Reports March 2, 2014

Compared to what little Voice of America can offer, this far from complete RT and Voice of Russia list of reports and commentaries shows that these outlets and the Kremlin were clearly prepared while VOA bosses were not. VOA executives even failed to have a correspondent in the White House on Friday and Saturday.

Even with some of the excellent reporting in English from RFE/RL, which does not focus on U.S. responses to events in Ukraine,  badly managed Voice of America does not even begin to counter the onslaught of rhetoric from the Kremlin’s media.

Keep in mind that this is only a very partial list of what RT and Voice of Russia have posted today.

Sun, Mar 02, 2014
Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: RT News (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

Sun, Mar 02, 2014
Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)

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