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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Annals of Neo-Soviet Paranoia Part II: Pravda on Imus

A reader tells LR that reports on hilarious incidence of Russian parnoia run amok:

From the department of Provocative Pensées and Rhetorical Flourishes comes this take on the Don Imus racist-remarks flap from Russian op-ed writer Sorcha Faal, who pens a commentary in the latest edition of Pravda.

In it, she explains to the Russian daily's readers that the headline-making, American radio talk-show host was widely criticized in the media this week and, ultimately, fired by his corporate bosses not because he uttered a stupid, senseless, hurtful, unabashedly racist remark on the air, thereby using a powerful media platform irresponsibly to disseminate indefensible hate speech, but rather because he was supposedly the target of some kind of conspiracy in support of Team Bush.

In Faal's estimation, Imus is some kind of fallen, "dissident" hero.

Faal writes: "In a clear sign of its intent to reign in dissident American media personalities and their growing influence in American culture, U.S. War Leaders this past week launched an unprecedented attack upon one of their most politically 'connected' and legendary radio hosts...after his threats to release information relating to the September 11, 2001 attacks...."

Faal refers to Imus's recent, repeated questioning and criticism of the controversial conditions that have prevailed at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, the military hospital in Washington, D.C., that has treated wounded U.S. soldiers returning from Bush's war in Iraq. Faal notes that, in one recent TV appearance in which Imus addressed the alarming conditions at the hospital, he told Tim Russert (host of the MSNBC program "Meet the Press") that if the powers that be in Washington were determined to keep the Walter Reed scandal from being investigated by the media, Imus himself would "start talking about" their "secrets, starting with 9/11."

Thus, Faal argues, Imus "represented the most serious threat to date of the growing assault against [the architect-commanders of the Iraq war] by America's media personalities [who may be] threatening to expose the truths behind the events of September 11, 2001 and the Iraq/Afghanistan wars...." Since they - leading, pro-war figures in Washington, that is - were "[u]nable to attack such a powerful media figure...directly," commentator Faal argues, "the U.S. War Leaders...resorted to a massive media attack against him, using as the reason a racial slur against a U.S. women's basketball team...."

Offering an on-air apology last Friday as the uproar over his remark was quickly gaining steam, Imus, using the royal "we," "said he wanted to 'apologize for an insensitive and ill-conceived remark we made the other morning referring to the Rutgers women's basketball team. It was completely inappropriate, and we can understand why people were offended. Our characterization was thoughtless and stupid, and we are sorry."

LR: If only the America could learn to treat Vladimir Putin just like it treated Don Imus!

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