Poroshenko Sanctions BBC

Yesterday Ukraine president signed a decree introducing sanctions against hundreds of individuals and legal entities – including three BBC journalists who are now barred from entering the country

This article originally appeared at Off Guardian

Petro Poroshenko has just stepped on his western supporters’ narrative of a glorious, free and happy post-Maidan Ukraine, by rather embarrassingly banning a whole slew of people from setting foot in his country – including “at least three” BBC employees. Nobody seems to know why. Either because they are a “threat to national interests” or because they are helping the “terrorists.” The list is vague.

Andrew Roy, the BBC’s foreign editor, said “This is a shameful attack on media freedom,” but the BBC website is burying the story of their own journalists being banned inside another item about how the rebel elections are a “threat to peace.”

The Guardian reports the story but does its best with its headline to give the impression there’s some sanity behind it all…

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And just can’t bring itself to condemn even this flagrant attack on journalistic freedom. After all, more than many other MSM outlets, they have nailed their colors to Ukraine’s mast, and there’s no going back now. However nuts the place goes, however many purges and massacres there are, however many rights are expunged, the Graun is still going to have to try to find some sort of bogus rationale, and however many nazis PP has in his government or running his militias, they are still going to have to put the word “fascist” in quotes.

Meanwhile in another part of the forest, Alec Luhn is busy quoting fearless “citizen journalist” bellingcat (aka Eliot Higgins) on the subject of alleged Russian troops in Ukraine Syria. Eliot was scrolling through Google images recently – as most serious investigative journalists do – and found a pic of a piece of Russian military hardware in Syria. He claims it proves Russia is sending military hardware to Syria.

For once we actually agree with him. But then Russia has been openly sending military hardware to Syria for at least ten years, so it’s not exactly surprising that some of it has been photographed there. And it’s most definitely not news.

Eliot is very possibly too confused to realise the presence of Russian hardware does not mean the presence of Russian armed forces, even though it was pointed out to him on Twitter by many helpful people. But Alec isn’t that confused. So we can only speculate why he wants to associate his name with that of the increasingly ridiculous and entirely discredited “citizen Higgins”.

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