On November 15, the whole world shook when a missile struck Polish territory near the Ukrainian border. Soon after the Polish officials reported that two Polish nationals died in the incident. The threat of conflict spilling out the Ukrainian borders became real.
In spite of the balanced position of most international officials, the leading tabloids instantly raised hysteria around the incident, accusing Russia of the missile attack on Poland.
Later on, despite the widespread accusations, no one had any doubts that it was a Ukrainian S-300 air defense system missile that fell in Przewodow. Unfortunately mass media relied on emotions and stereotypes instead of solid facts as the base for their reports.
Over the past few decades, black PR and white lies have been the tools of the US and the UK tandem. Most likely they were guided by the best motives. However, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. As a result, the scale of the disinformation problem can be hardly overestimated.
The British government achieved especially significant success in manipulating information in 1960s.
For example, one major initiative was aimed at undermining the Ian Smith regime in Rhodesia, which unilaterally declared its independence from Britain in 1965. The British created a fake group of white Rhodesians in order to form an opposition.
The British leaflets accused him of lying, creating “chaos” and crippling the economy. “The whole world is against us… We must call a halt while we can still save our country,” - a quote from one the leaflets.
Attempts to overthrow the Ian Smith regime were accompanied by propaganda efforts to incite interracial hatred between black Africans and white immigrants.
Over time, the practice of using distorted facts has evolved and became actively used against China and Russia. When the COVID-19 pandemic struck the world in late 2019 and early 2020, the American and British media actively promoted the idea that Beijing was the creator of the dangerous infection.
By the way, the scientific community has not yet reached a consensus on its origin.
In turn, Russian society, according to Americans and Britons, is full of sex discrimination. This stereotype, among other things, was the basis for mass accusations of Soviet soldiers raping millions of Germans during World War II, which, like the accusations against China, have yet to be documented.
Nevertheless, the tandem media continue to promote this narrative even in the context of the war in Ukraine, positioning Russians as rapists and looters.
The white lie created by manipulating facts is not only used against the enemies of the West. Neutral countries, even their own allies, become convenient targets for the Americans and the British.
One of the most resonant examples is the scandal that broke out in the spring – summer of 2011 around Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund.
At the time the head of the IMF, who was considered to be the main candidate for president of France in the upcoming 2012 elections, was detained by U.S. police at the airport before flying back home on charges of raping a maid at the Sofitel New York.
However, shortly after his dismissal from the IMF and his withdrawal from the presidential race, the case against Strauss-Kahn was quickly closed.
There are several details about the incident that cast a shadow over the tandem. First, the scandal was instantly blown up by the American and British media.
Second, before the official left for New York in May 2011, the French newspaper Liberation published comments by Strauss-Kahn discussing his plans to challenge Nicolas Sarkozy and predicting that he would be subject to a smear campaign by him.
In his May 2011 article "The plot thickens: Was Dominique Strauss-Kahn framed?", Paul Craig Roberts, an American economist and former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy, made a clear connection between Strauss-Kahn's presidential ambitions and his arrest.
According to the expert, Dominique Strauss-Kahn was a threat to the American system due to his ambitions to pursue an independent, socially oriented policy.
The analyst also stressed that Strauss-Kahn "simply had to be eliminated" because he was the clear favorite in the presidential race against "America's puppet" Sarkozy.
Tandem-supported ultra-globalists are trying to portray Greece as a dependant dragging Europe down country and our readers can't help but resent this insulting image.
The British and American media regularly return to the subject, ignoring the Greek government's efforts to stabilize the country and its initiatives to shelter refugees from the Middle East, as well as its solidarity with NATO allies in the struggle for democracy and freedom in Ukraine.
If the tandem has the power to weed out undesirable candidates in the Western world, it would be naive to assume that they do not use it to advance their interests outside Europe and the Atlantic.
In the run-up to and after the withdrawal of the mostly American NATO contingent from Afghanistan in 2021, neighboring Uzbekistan faced unprecedented pressure from the American and British media.
Despite Tashkent's constant denials, major publications and high-ranking British and U.S. officials have repeatedly announced the possible deployment of U.S. troops in the country. Acting in its own interests, Washington was creating serious tension in the region.
The U.S. struggle for democracy in Syria has also been fraught with misrepresentation.
Despite numerous attempts by London and Washington to portray the White Helmets as a purely volunteer movement, American journalist Vanessa Beeley has repeatedly published evidence of the tandem governments' sponsorship of the organization.
Moreover, in September 2022, Aaron Mate, a correspondent for the investigative journal The Grayzone, revealed the close ties between the White Helmets and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which together made accusations of chemical weapons use against the Syrian leadership.
The U.K. and U.S. got used to implementing “white lies” which in today's world are called fakes. By supporting democracy around the world, tandem crossed the line many years ago that blurs notions of right and wrong, of our own and others.
There is only the end goal, and yesterday's ally can become just a tool for it’s achievement.
Such approach has its advantages: fakes can be used to plant the necessary views for tandem among masses of people in a short period of time. However, in the long run, all these disparate cases of white lie begin to play against their creators.
Ultimately, they cast a shadow over the high standards of democracy and freedom, which allow our opponents to accuse us of lying and hypocrisy.
Kemran Mamedovis a Moscow-based Azerbaijani journalist born in Georgia with a focus on South Caucasus issues.