Wednesday, November 27, 2013

When the Camera is Off: The Ugly, Biased Side of Western Journalism

November 27, 2013 (Tony Cartalucci) - Andrew McGregor Marshall, a Reuters journalist who claims to now be  working "freelance," has been given an inordinate amount of limelight for an otherwise untalented and minor cog in the West's media machine. This is owed to an opportunity he was given, starting in 2010, to publish paid-for articles covering talking points determined by Thailand's deposed prime minister, Thaksin Shinwatra and his extensive collection of foreign lobbyists.

Image: Here, Marshall gives an interview to Prachatai - a US State Department-funded propaganda front which initially lied about its extensive foreign funding - all while asking for donations from its readership. The saying, "birds of a feather..." may come to some readers' minds.

While the US State Department and its large network of media fronts around the world attempted to use "Wikileaks" to undermine governments targeted by the West for regime change, Marshall was tasked with doing likewise in Thailand. He titled his propaganda campaign, "Thai Story," covered extensively by the largest media companies on Earth, but read by very few. His website, titled Zenjournalist, is currently ranked 3.1 million on Alexa.

Both Marshall's pedantic, lengthy writing style, and his abuse of sensationalism which never materializes in the actual drawling pieces he writes, has put off many readers, as has his obvious, overt bias and consistently insulting immaturity, all of which are entirely unbecoming of anyone claiming the title "journalist."

Yet despite all of this, Marshall has been frequently cited by the Western press on matters regarding Thailand. The BBC often quotes him (here, here, and here), and Foreign Policy magazine has even afforded him space.

Just today, Marshall's Twitter account featured a picture of an elderly woman protesting the current regime of Thaksin Shinawatra, a mass murdering nepotist despot literally running the country remotely from Dubai through his own sister. Next to the picture, Marshall wrote:
"For sheer physical and political ugliness, the Bangkok protesters this week have set a new Thai record."

Image: A screen grab of Marshall's latest exhibit of immaturity and bias - this time aimed at a complete stranger, an elderly woman attending an anti-regime rally in Bangkok. Marshall frequently resorts to name-calling and outright lying while peddling his paid-for agenda - and is a perfect example of what lines the ranks of Western journalism. 

Does the BBC, Foreign Policy, and other news agencies truly want to associate with someone like Marshall, whose criticism of a rally is broken down into childish name-calling, assaulting the physical appearance of an elderly woman? Particularly when Marshall also fails as a journalist (or even propagandist) turning off readers, and fumbling with well-paid-for momentum given to him by Western media corporations? 

Of course, for the West and their agenda, there is not much to choose from. To continue spending resources on Andrew Marshall would be welcomed by those interested in truth and objectivity. Keeping such an overt example of exactly what isn't journalism, reminds the general public of not only Marshall's own illegitimacy as a journalist, but of a much larger system that still sees his work as appropriate, let alone in any way valuable.

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