Thursday, 14 August 2008

In search of truth and balance

Posted elsewhere by Exile:

Something about August (western newsrooms, which have anyway been cutting editorial budgets, being lightly staffed); the distraction of the Olympics and a misplaced admiration for being 'democratically elected' did throw western media off its game. No doubt about it; in the first days of reporting the South Ossetian conflict zone.

The early coverage in the west was awful and biased. And Saakashvili's acting skills did bludgeon fair reason from western editors' minds.

But Russians should please remember the west's press *is* free and, like a plane in turbulence tends back towards the centre of its gravity and even flight, eventually western journalists' fondness for fact and accuracy, reverts back to (on a good day) journalistic balance.

The London Times today has two pieces, by significant UK writers, Russians should approve of: and the sublime Simon Sebag-Montefiore: The Russian point of view is being heard. And is respected.

If Moscow stops shouting, for a moment, about western media's bias, it might even hear its more reasonable, and increasingly Moscow-attuned, voice.

Russia has won the military battle. It can still even win the longer-run war for the respect from the west it reasonably deserves.

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