BBC Hit Piece, My Response To It …

I’ve been pretty vocal over the last week after becoming aware of the BBC’s intention to do a piece on me, and what that would be (given it’s the BBC):

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/17/bbc-its-fake-news-and-always-no-from-me/

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/21/why-the-bbc-have-come-after-me/

Here’s the piece, and my comments in bold. I’ll deal with the part of the article (by Sam Bright) about myself, Texas and Patrick are more than capable of answering for themselves, and have done just that. Texas here. Patrick here. Photos added for reference.

Bentley isn’t a one-off. Other Westerners have been using online crowdfunding to finance their activities in eastern Ukraine since the conflict started.
Among them is 38-year-old Graham Phillips from Nottingham. Since November 2013, Phillips has been covering the conflict, broadcasting amateur videos from Donbass, often in the midst of tearing bullets and toppling buildings. His daredevil style has drawn the attention of audiences, and he boasts 86,000 subscribers on YouTube. From 2014 to 2015, Phillips was employed by Zvezda – a media channel run by the Russian Ministry of Defence, and he also freelanced for the state-operated TV channel RT.

No mention of my ending my own contract with Zvezda, and my oft-mentioned grievance with RT over how they cut me off in Poland, after 2nd deportation, nor actually, that at the start of the conflict, before I realised what they were like, I even did some freelance work for … the BBC.

Actually I wrote for the New Statesman, Politico, Newsweek – before coming to similar conclusions about them.

Not that it’s even an issue, working for Russian media – they allowed me to report the story the BBC don’t want you to hear, and not one thing I ever reported while working for Russian media was disproven, but working for Russian media represents way, way the minority of my output as a journalist.

Phillips is highly critical of the Ukrainian government and appears to back the break-up of the country. Speaking on camera to Bentley in September 2015, Phillips accuses the Ukrainian government of “lies and propaganda”, before adding: “I absolutely believe that we’ll win in the end.”

The old trick of taken out of context. This was clearly said in the context of the ‘fight for truth’ winning. And one line, taken from the thousands of things I’ve said … and, taken out of context. As for the rest, of course I’m critical of the Ukrainain government, how can one not criticise a government which has set about shelling civilians? Not that the BBC article makes any mention of that at all, of course, and in any case most of my reportage is actually letting people in Donbass speak for themselves. 

Since May 2014, Phillips has been forbidden from entering Ukraine, on the grounds of “national security”. The Ukrainian government even took the unusual step of issuing an open letter to UK authorities, condemning Phillips’ actions.

This is technically factual, to point. However, there are two sides, and no attempt to balance the negative about me with another side. Nor mention that this attempt by the Ukrainian government was dismissed by the UK government. 

Phillips says that he’s an independent journalist and claims that he has financed his activities entirely through crowdfunding from January 2016 onwards – although existing records indicate he’s raised less than £7,500 through crowdfunding campaigns during that time.

I’ve raised a bit more than that, as I also crowdfund using Paypal, and my Russian card. But, yeah, it’s tough to cover costs as an independent journalist, contribute if you can!

https://www.paypal.me/grahamwphillips

A screenshot from Graham Phillips’ latest crowdfunding campaign. Phillips is currently crowdfunding for a new period of reporting in eastern EuropeImage copyright.

That’s actually not true, this campaign closed a couple of weeks ago, and there are none currently active.

At least three of his campaigns have been created to fund work in Donbass, and despite being banned from the country, he’s travelled to the region frequently since May 2014. On his blog, he says he enters the region via Russia, although travelling to the area via separatist controlled border crossings is currently illegal under Ukrainian law.

And that’s Ukrainian law. So really, so what? Hundreds of Europeans, people from across the world have entered, enter the DPR and LPR that way...

Because of his actions, the crowdfunding website JustGiving removed one of Phillips’ appeals in July 2015. After the company was notified that Phillips was unable to legally re-enter the region, JustGiving refused to release the £2,000 that Phillips had raised through his campaign.

Actually this is really pretty disingenous. The campaign on JustGiving was purely for humanitarian aid, for Donbass, and not for my work at all. No mention of this whatsoever, by the BBC

Although Phillips also declined to speak to BBC Trending, he has disputed the company’s actions, and his campaigns remain active on Indiegogo.

I actually had quite a lot to say to the BBC in my replies to Sam, see here:

Unlike Bentley, Phillips has not engaged in combat, although he has been filmed navigating a drone with the help of soldiers in Donbass and has interviewed Ukrainian prisoners of war.

Pre-empting what the BBC would write (along with the narrative, etc), I already dealt with this point here – https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/07/21/why-the-bbc-have-come-after-me/


Graham Phillips on Twitter, saying that he chose not to apply the Geneva Convention to his workImage copyright@GRAHAMWP_UK

Out of my over 47,000 tweets, encompassing all themes, Sam chose this. Ok, as he wishes, I don’t have a problem with it. I know that I always work with good faith, sincerity, integrity. And there are plenty of tweets stating this, again, not of interest to the BBC. 

Phillips is not the only Brit who has travelled to the Ukraine conflict region. Earlier this month, Benjamin Stimson, from Oldham, Greater Manchester, was sentenced by Manchester Crown Court to five years and four months in prison for assisting separatist forces in Donbass.

So, an attempt to tie me in with the recently imprisoned Ben Stimson, that’s clear then.

And a question for the BBC, why did the article start out under this headline: Westerners crowdfunding for the break-up of Ukraine – 

To this, shortly later: The communist soldier using charity sites to fund his war (Texas)…

The adventures of an American in Donbass perhaps not of the greatest interest to a British reader? I have my own view, that the BBC tried to come for me, I saw them coming, called them, and they’ve ended up going a bit soft. One-sided, propagandistic, deceitful – of course, it’s the BBC, but, flaccid. The article they wanted to write, which would give the government the excuse to stop me leaving the country, didn’t happen. It was a clumsy, half-cocked hatchet job.

Gallingly, I, like everyone else in the UK, have to pay for this shit… 

UK Ambassador Judith Gough: Having a Gay Time in Ukraine, while War in Donbass Goes On

The UK has had a particularly poor record with recent ambassadors to Ukraine. Simon Smith, in position between 2012 and 15, showed little real interest in the position, and his contribution amounted to little more than mouthing along with, and retweeting handed-down rhetoric:

Smith’s farewell tweet in September of 2015 gathered a paltry 25 retweets as he slipped out of position, just as he’d generally slipped under the radar in his weak, prematurely ended tenure –

Smith, who had clearly just been punching his timecard, was replaced by Judith Gough, (Wikipedia): born 1972, educated at the University of Nottingham (BA German and Russian, 1995) and at King’s College London (MA War in Modern World, 2012). She then worked as a Consultant in Emerging Markets and Financial Services at Ernst and Young.

Gough joined the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) in 2001. Gough then served at the British embassy in South KoreaStarting from mid-September 2010 she was Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Republic of Georgia, and served as such till she was released of her post early 2013.

She then became FCO’s Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

In September 2015 Gough was appointed Ambassador of the United Kingdom in Ukraine.

Gough is openly lesbian and raises two children with her partner, Julia Kleiousi.

Gough began her tenure, in September 2015, with a tweet clearly meant to show that a stronger, more forceful player was in town:

And she’s continued in that vein. Endless tweets, retweets (as here) about Crimea, how it’s ‘Ukraine’ and everything there is ‘worsening’ etc etc – despite making no effort herself to ever actually visit Crimea, which she freely could.

Of course, the retweets about Boris Johnson and his parroting of ‘Russian aggression’ – 

Endless tweets about the ‘heroism of Maidan’ –

And Gough loudly trumpets UK and Ukrainian military cooperation, tweeting this out last month –

Gough is indeed very hawkish about UK / Ukraine military cooperation, and the UK’s recent pledge to increase that, tweeting on at every opportunity. 

What Judith doesn’t tweet: 

Anything about Ukraine’s ongoing shelling of civilian areas of Donbass

Anything about the general disorder in Ukraine, actions of the far-right, radicals, and so on. About this recently in Lvov, for example: Vandals Caught On Video Drawing Swastikas On Ukraine Holocaust Memorial

Nothing about that on Judith’s feed. And while the Campaign for the Protection of Journalists was writing criticising Ukraine for the lack of any result in the investigation into the murder of Pavel Sheremet, on July 12th, Judith was tweeting:

Gough, perhaps predictably, tweets lots about reform. Yet, it’s clear that neither ‘reform’ in Ukraine, nor recycling of endless anti-Russian propaganda is what really interests the 44-year-old is a theme closer to home. Judith clearly sees herself, as the UK’s first openly gay international diplomat, as a crusading figure for openly gay people in senior positions, a perception perpetuated by puff pieces such as this March 2016, adoring interview by Buzzfeed.

All of which would be fine, and wonderful, if Judith were doing a good job, which she’s not. At best, she’s just passing on UK propaganda. But worse, her aggressive tweets of stepped up UK military intervention push peace further from the agenda. And more’s the argument that Gough’s sexuality is perhaps not paramount in her position as ambassador to a country locked in ongoing civil war. Yet, since June 1st, Judith has tweeted, retweeted, over 15 times about issues relating to LGBT, but only 3 about Donbass….

Putting her LGBT activism to one side, looking through Gough’s Twitter, it’s clear that she’s fallen victim to the standard ambassadorial pitfall – virtue signalling charity events at the ambassador’s residence, in Kiev, from July 19th –

In fairness to Gough, in June she did actually visit Kramatorsk, Donbass, yet there’s no indication she spoke to anyone there, other than the inevitable NGO’s –

Before publishing this, I had a final look at Gough’s Twitter feed. Her last tweet was 2 days ago, a retweet:

Gough’s homosexuality and accent on that may actually be a blessing, as her focus on LGBT activism at least limits the harm she is doing in her position as UK ambassador to Ukraine.  Yet when history is written, it’s hard to believe that even the LGBT community will review Gough kindly. 

BBC: It’s Fake News, and Always No, from Me.

Another enquiry comes today, to speak to the BBC. And the answer, for the stated reasons, is, as it will ever be. No! (Photo added, for illustration)

Hi Graham,

My name’s Sam Bright – I work for the BBC in London.

I’m currently writing a story for BBC Trending about the work of individuals such as Patrick Lancaster, Russell Bentley and yourself in eastern Ukraine.

We would obviously be interested in speaking to you for this story, to hear your views. We would like to ask you generally about your experiences, and about how you use the internet to fund your work and spread your message.

Let me know if this would be possible. I look forward to hearing from you.

Many thanks,

Sam Bright
Reporter | BBC Trending
Email: sam.bright@bbc.co.uk

My answer:

Sam,

No offence to you personally, as I don’t know you, and you may be a nice guy, but the BBC are a shower of despicable, disgraceful, disgraced propagandists, not to be trusted in any circumstances. And so my response would be something like: shame on you bunch of lying, propagandising scoundrels for bringing journalism into disrepute, and my country into disrepute. Where are your morals, ethics, or integrity? How can you be so entirely dishonest in your coverage, and reportage? It’s rank deceit.

The BBC is fake news, outright lies, and I’m having absolutely no part of your odious operation, in any way. Actually, you disgust me. I always work to report the truth – that means I work against the BBC, who work to twist, and distort the truth, at every turn.

I think that covers it for now,

Graham

 

BBC Propaganda Called Out #1 ‘Everyone’s leaving after Brexit’

The BBC’s position on Brexit has been as clear from the start as it is to this day – completely opposed to it, all their coverage unswervingly biased against it. 

So, perhaps it’s no surprise that the recent BBC article entitled ‘The Foreign Workers Leaving Britain because of Brexit’ is in exactly the same vein. Propaganda. And more, easily called out propaganda. Let’s have a look at the article, which gives an extremely favourable account of several EU citizens who’ve come to the UK, lived the dream etc etc, and now all want to leave due to Brexit.

Katarina Karmazinova came to London aged 24 to study European business. Attracted, she says, by the UK’s multiculturalism and openness, the Slovakian….

Katarina Karmazinova moved to London from Slovakia but sold her flat and moved overseas after the EU referendum vote

Karmazinova is not the only immigrant who feels this way since the referendum vote – the BBC propagandaarticle goes on in a similar vein, appealing photo of Karmazinova etc – Some are simply considering leaving and waiting it out for now. Others have already left, returning home, going somewhere else within the EU, or decamping to a different continent altogether.

It is too early to tell if Brexit’s upheaval could be partially responsible for fewer foreigners choosing the UK as a destination, but net migration to the UK did fall by 49,000 to 273,000 in the year to September 2016, according to the Office for National Statistics.

And next we’re on to undue focus on a website with actually a staggeringly low level
of take-up
, given the near 9-million foreign born citizens in the UK (and another sympathetic photo, of course).

After getting over the “shock” of the UK’s decision to leave the EU, 33-year-old Marcin BBC propaganda 1Czyza got the idea for an online recruitment firm to help people, especially foreign nationals, who were suddenly considering career opportunities outside of the UK…. Within a few months, interest in the site took off. There are more than 1,200 registered candidates. Roughly 90% of them are foreigners living in the UK, with the majority originating from Germany, France, Poland, Italy, Spain, and Portugal.

Here, not even photo of the person, so we’ll just have to take the BBC’s word that he exists, and said all this, predictable patter – 

When Dariusz Truchel emigrated to Britain from Poland in 2005, he did so with the idea that he would find “better job possibilities”. Once settled outside of London, he worked as a project manager and took a number of health and safety courses, eventually setting up his own health and safety consultancy. Truchel even bought a house.

So the inevitable fairytale, of course, the crashing post-Brexit comedown…

But after Brexit, Truchel, 34, began feeling pessimistic about the future. He began noticing a new attitude among people who had voted to separate from the EU. “It is hard to describe this atmosphere because nobody dares to say it to your face, but there is a feeling of being an uninvited guest,” he says. He registered on Expat Exit and is now seriously considering leaving the UK.

And there’s another example, in a similar note, again no photo, and this time, ’32-year-old Romanian Alex’, only eve wants his first name revealed. Another pre-Brexit fairytale ‘all wrecked by Brexit etc etc.’


BBC propaganda 2And, just to wrap things up, we have another nice photo of  Karmazinova)
, who now ‘spends her time travelling while she decides where she will settle… Karmazinova, the Slovakian who left the UK, has yet to decide where she will settle – but she knows it won’t be back in the UK as long it stays separated from the EU. ‘ 

And it goes on for a bit in that vein, before concluding in, well the same vein, without even the slightest attempt to introduce anything approaching another side. So, nothing about the millions, and millions of foreign workers in the UK planning to stay, I even found some on the pro-EU March for Europe, they may not have liked Brexit, but nor were they planning on leaving. Nor anything about the murderers, rapists, and violent criminals which the UK couldn’t deport under EU rules.

But then that’s the BBC, nothing if not the most relentless of propaganda! 

Boris isn’t Fooling British People Anymore….

Graham Phillips

screenshot-1209I’ve written a fair bit about British foreign secretary Boris Johnson and his recent visit to Ukraine, where he pumped out the usual cocktail of lies and propaganda:

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/03/01/boris-johnson-and-ukraine-bingo-the-hit-new-game/

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/03/03/crimea-russia-and-to-rage-against-the-uk-propaganda-machine/

However, now head over to Boris’s Facebook page and have a look. Because the signs are, not everyone’s swallowing it anymore – the top comments on Boris’ post praising Maidan, here:

screenshot-1388Tim Watkins

EU meddling left Putin with no choice. Ukrainian territorial integrity would have been maintained if the EU had not persisted with its ridiculous expansionist agenda. For what it’s worth, I think the Foreign Office position on this is dead wrong, just as it is on Syria. Russia deserves to be treated with more respect.

Isobel Jardine

Well said Tim Watkins

The Russian Embassy has am excellent response to the Foreign Affairs Select Committee Report on the Relationship with Russia

There has been an intense London-Washington false propaganda campaign about both, especially Syria given the intensity and length of involvement there.

screenshot-1396And they completely fa to mention the illegal US action in Kiev and the coup, or to show any concern for Ukrainians who opposed that
Really sickening but the Government’s.behaviour appears out.of control

I corresponded with the Foreign Office, which is a waste of time Dire attitude and standard with dishonesty about both, intensely about Syria
Really shameful

Matt Taylor

Indeed, I am a five tour veteran of the Royal Marines and I side with the Russians as well. We saw what happened when we got rid of Saddam and Gadaffi, and we want to do the same thing with Assad? It is monumental ignorance and the entire British public knows it. The establishment are desperate for war with Russia, they have to know that we absolutely will not stand for it.

Now of course there are other comments on there, expressing other opinions. But, something is clear, Boris’ (and lets call it what it is) bullshit isn’t fooling all the people anymore!

Crimea, Russia and to Rage against the UK Propaganda Machine

Graham Phillips

I’ve been back in the UK for over a month now, and in that time, I’ve come to understand a few things better, especially the meaning of Orwell’s phrase that the future is ‘a boot stamping on a human face forever’.

But that’s hardly where the Orwell references end. Because in the UK it’s works a truly Orwellian-style propaganda machine, designed to keep the populace in eternal suspension of the purported threat of, of course – Russia! 

There’s Boris Johnson over in Kiev, churning out an incessant slew of anti-Russian rhetoric, without any substance to back it up, but because it’s anti-Russian, it’ll naturally be accepted unquestioned:

screenshot-1215

What we do have, of course, is Boris meeting ‘Crimean Tatars’ and condemning Russia’s ‘illegal annexation‘ of Crimea…

screenshot-1307Yet this provided without any context whatsoever. Russia’s ‘illegal annexation‘ of Crimea came about after a referendum there, which came about after a violent overthrow of government in Ukraine, Euromaidan. Yet, Euromaidan is exalted in the UK, events at eminent establishments are held in its honour, and dissenting from the narrative is not condoned –

Euromaidan is so important because the whole house of cards rests on it. It must be purported that Euromaidan was good. Because then it can be sustained that Crimea, and Donbass, are ‘bad’, and ‘Russian aggression’. And the situation in Crimea must be made out to be ‘bad’ (as it always is), with particular focus on the Crimean Tatars and their supposed repression.

In the above Crimean Tatar photo, it looks like Crimean Tatar figure Mustafa Dzhemilev, self-appointed ‘leader of Crimean Tatars‘, who supported Euromaidan tatarsin Crimea, left in 2014 for Kiev, and has provided an endless source for western media of reports of repression, persecution etc against Crimean Tatars in Crimea, despite himself not having been there for some 3 years now.

In Crimea, some are puzzled why Dzhemilev has never attempted to return to the peninsula, most accept that he has found a lucrative stream in Kiev, endlessly reciting how ‘repressed’ his people are, to eager audiences who ensure he is well remunerated for his suffering.

Yet in Crimea, Dzhemilev is regarded by most Crimean Tatars as a traitor to his own people:

And, as here, my reportage, while you can find Crimean Tatars who will tell you they preferred life under Ukraine, they are in the minority, and more, feel free to express that opinion:

But, none of this must be allowed to reach mainstream media. There, it can only be a wall of ‘blame Russia’, that’s become so much of a meme the Russian Embassy in the UK regularly joke about it –

screenshot-1310

What are the Ukrainian Embassy doing, meanwhile? Pumping out a relentless stream of tweets blaming Russia for everything…

screenshot-990screenshot-1258
screenshot-1264screenshot-1252And they are fully supported by the UK in doing this, the UK’s own embassy ever happy to tweet, retweet anything, as long as it’s pro-Ukrainian, and by default, anti-Russian. Ukraine really is an incredibly convenient country for those looking for a stick with which to beat Russia, so much so that all are willing to turn a blind eye to the manifest problems with, and in, Ukraine –

And when it’s not Ukraine, there’s always a subculture of Russia which can be passed off as Russia, look at Reggie Yates’ recent ‘yoof’ style series on BBC, Extreme Russia, simply a chance to go round exposing all that’s bad about the country, safe in the knowledge that no one over here will either disagree, or seek to present the other side.

So, that’s the reality as we have it, walls, and waves of anti-Russian propaganda. And nowhere’s safe, not even sport, this is how the BBC are portraying the upcoming World Cup in Russia:

screenshot-1302

Of course there are those in the UK who can see behind the lies, and the masks, to the truth. But you have to really want to. You are faced with a colossal propaganda machine in the UK, to lie down is to let it simply stamp all over you. To stand against it, you have to be be prepared to, as things are now, stand almost alone.

The Truth about Euromaidan vs LSE Propaganda

I’ll be doing video reportage on the subject this week, as yesterday I attended a panel discussion organised by the London School of Economics, LSE, as part of their literary festival. The topic was Euromaidan, and I went along with an open mind (as I also went to Euromaidan itself), ready to listen, sitting for over half an hour…

screenshot-60

And all I heard from the panellists, featuring most notably Euromaidan activist Mustafa Nayeem, was one pro-Euromaidan account after another. And it became clear, this event wasn’t going to be a real discussion on Maidan at all. It was simply a Euromaidan propaganda seminar.

So, I decided to ask the panellists some questions myself, what happened?

screenshot-66

screenshot-64

screenshot-67

Consternation in the panel, uproar from the pro-Euromaidan element of the audience, who had clearly gone along to hear just the above propaganda –

screenshot-63

And I was quickly kicked out.

My question had been quite simple, how can they, at a respected London Institution, pass off a propaganda event as part of a literary festival? Where was the mention of what I saw on Euromaidan – terrorism?

More to come, for now, this is Euromaidan as I remember it – the truth about Euromaidan –