BBG Watch Commentary
Russian and International Media on Radio Liberty Crisis, Feb. 02, 2013Russian media continues to report on the ongoing crisis at Radio Liberty. Latest reports focus on the video shot at the former Nazi concentration camp in Auschwitz by fired Radio Liberty journalist Mumin Shakirov, which the Russian Service website ignored.

Shakirov is receiving media attention for taking with him to the Auschwitz concentration camp two young Russian women who had become famous in Russia for admitting in a television show that they knew nothing about the World War II Jewish Holocaust.

The Russian media is reporting on this story, pointing out that Shakirov was fired from Radio Liberty last September along with dozens of experienced journalists. Shakirov had proposed the Holocaust video project to the previous Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) management team, but his request was ignored. New president of RFE/RL Kevin Klose was appointed a few days ago, but most members of the previous management team are still working at the U.S.-funded media freedom broadcaster.

Mumin Shakirov, Kholokost, klei dlia oboev? Sovershenno sekretno, January 28, 2013

Zhurnalist otvez ne znavshikh pro Kholokost devushek v Osvencim, Sinagoga, January 31, 2013

“Sovershenno sekretno” i zhurnalist Mumin Shakirov ne davali soglasiia Radio Svoboda, Sovershenno
, Novaia Svoboda, January 31, 2013

Mumin Shakirov: “Bez uvolennykh sotrudnikov ‘Svobody’ sokhranit’ vysokii uroven’ nevozmozhno,” Colta, Novaia Svoboda, February 1, 2013

Robert Coalson, After Aushwitz Visit, Russian Sisters Know What “Holocaust” Means, Radio Free
Europe/Radio Liberty
, January 30, 2013

In Which Two Russian Sisters Find Out About the Holocaust, The Atlantic, January 31, 2013

RFER/RL Coverage of Holocaust Video Project Raises Questions, BBG Watch, February 1, 2013

Ne znavshie pro Kholokost devushki popali v Osventsim, DELFI, February 1, 2013

Youth in Moscow Learn True Value of Education on Jewish Holocaust, Women News Network, February 1,

Gessen Website Ignores Story on Holocaust Video, BBG Watch, February 2, 2013

Russian media reports also focused recently on the appointment of Kevin Klose to become RFE/RL acting president. He has replaced Steven Korn who was responsible for the mass firings of Radio Liberty journalists. Korn resigned on December 31, 2013.

Last September, Steven Korn assured members of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), the federal agency in charge of U.S. international broadcasting, that the controversy over his decision to fire Radio Liberty journalists and to appoint Masha Gessen as the Russian Service director will blow over in two weeks. The far from complete BBG Watch list of Russian and international media reports on the Radio Liberty crisis has now 470 items.

BBG Watch List of Russian and International Media on Radio Liberty Crisis, Feb. 02, 2013, PDF