Russian Attack Staged? Duh...
by Rob Wipond, August 25, 2010.
Why are reporters such dupes?
Canadian news media are leaping on this story of Russian fighters over our North that broke only hours ago -- it's already appearing in hundreds of outlets, according to Google News. And yet, I can virtually guarantee, it was completely staged.
Why are professional news reporters the first people to let themselves be used as dopey props in political propaganda operations? Like the TC's front-page pic of Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff holding a baby last week. (What self-respecting news editor runs a picture of a politician holding a baby!?)
Today, miraculously at the exact time that Prime Minister Stephen Harper is up North photo-opping with the military and talking about protecting Arctic sovereignty and buying more fighter jets, two Russian fighters flew in a "threatening" manner close to Canadian airspace before being nobly "escorted" away by Canada's own jets.
The Conservatives attacked immediately with a press release: "The Harper Government has ensured our Forces have the tools, the readiness and the personnel to continue to meet any challenges to Canadian sovereignty with a robust response... The CF-18 is an incredible aircraft that enables our Forces to meet Russian challenges in our North. That proud tradition will continue after the retirement of the CF-18 fleet as the new, highly capable and technologically-advanced F-35 comes into service. It is the best plane our Government could provide our Forces, and when you are a pilot staring down Russian long range bombers, that's an important fact to remember."
Even as CBC journalist Karina Roman is blogging about this as an obvious farce (and noting such fly-bys are actually common occurrences), the CBC is elsewhere playing along with it utterly seriously, as are hundreds of other media outlets, including local Victoria ones.
Think it's too wild a conspiracy theory to suspect the Conservatives actually asked the Russian government to launch the scary fly-over at this precisely scheduled day and hour? I don't. I still have copies of the documents showing that, when trying to drum up support for gypsy moth spraying in the late 90s, the Canadian government actually requested the U.S. government to publicly threaten to boycott our log exports if we didn't spray. The U.S. complied with our request, and local public support for the aerial pesticide spraying of Victoria went up dramatically... So stay tuned for a "favour" back to Russia with love in the coming weeks...