How RT helped create ‘news’ about a ‘massacre’ in Syria

This is how RT, formerly known as Russia Today, describes itself:

RT news covers the major issues of our time for viewers wishing to question more and delivers stories often missed by the mainstream media to create news with an edge.

The key word in this description is create.

As James Miller demonstrates in the following analysis, RT can certainly spin a dramatic yarn even when it has no evidence to back up its claims.

No doubt RT appeals to an audience that questions much of the information that is presented in the mainstream media. But as I’ve said before, critical attention is of limited value if it only gets cast in one direction. Too often, skepticism and gullibility come wrapped together.

James Miller writes: 80 civilians “massacred,” bodies thrown in ovens, and an international cover up of a horrific act of terrorism — these are just some of the striking claims made by the Russian network RT. On December 15th, the Russian state-owned media outlet formerly called “Russia Today” reported claims made by the Syrian and Russian governments that dozens of people had been butchered by radical Islamists in the Syrian town of Adra.

By the 17th, RT had even more alarming and detailed claims:

“People put in ovens, entire families kidnapped, Christians and Alawites executed — These horrifying reports come to RT from the town of Adra, north of the Syrian capital which has been occupied by Islamist rebel groups. At least 100 people are said to have been massacred by the rebels, but as the Syrian Army continues to liberate the city, that number is expected to rise. Our crew spoke to some of the survivors.”

This massacre in Adra, if it could be proven, could have been one of the worst massacres so far in Syria’s civil war.

According to the report, Adra’s residents were attacked by Islamist rebels, whom they have dubbed “the decapitators,” in a town that RT describes as “an industrial town” populated by workers who were trapped when a rebel surprise attack caught them, and the Syrian military, off guard.

There is only one problem — it has been more than three weeks since this report aired, and there is not a single piece of evidence that supports the claim that Islamic radicals massacred anyone in Adra. There’s not even evidence that a massacre has occurred at all. Even worse, several of RT’s key pieces of information have proven to not only be false, but to have been falsified in such a way that it appears that RT either made no attempt to verify the facts, or perhaps even helped falsify the report themselves. [Continue reading…]

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1 thought on “How RT helped create ‘news’ about a ‘massacre’ in Syria

  1. A Meshiea

    I had always suspected RT was a 2nd tier news organization. The reports are so clearly propogandistic. This article shows just how blatant they are. I know of many people that think RT is where one goes for the “truth.” They are always left of center anti-Imperialists and find much succor in having their views reinforced by this outlet.

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