BBG Watch Commentary



This one-sided political and partisan propaganda video was produced with Russian subtitles for “Current Time” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) and Voice of America (VOA) Russian TV and online platform paid for by U.S. taxpayers through the U.S. Agency for Global Media (USAGM), previously known as the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG). The video was produced and posted online in June 2016. It was still seen on USAGM websites on December 25, 2018. At the time of its production and now, the USAGM has been managed by officials appointed during the Obama Administration. Under their watch, both VOA and RFE/RL have illegally targeted Americans with Facebook ads, an investigation by the House Foreign Affairs Committee has revealed. The investigation was requested by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) who will soon be retiring.

USAGM CEO John Lansing said in a letter to the Editor of the Los Angeles Times that “Our journalism is required by law to be ‘conducted in accordance with the highest professional standards of broadcast journalism,’ which by definition does not allow propaganda. Any violation of these standards at all five USAGM networks is met with direct and rigorous attention.” The House Foreign Affairs Committee investigation report criticized the management of the USAGM/BBG agency under John Lansing’s watch.

The one-sided propaganda video showing Hillary Clinton attacking Donald Trump with her words translated into Russian subtitles for RFE/RL and VOA TV and online Russian-language program “Current Time” has remained on the USAGM platforms for 30 months. USAGM was previously known as the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG). John Lansing was appointed BBG CEO in 2015.