May 5, 2014
Yesterday in Odessa, Ukraine, more than 30 anti-Kiev protesters were burned alive, as a US-backed pro-Kiev mob set fire to the trade union building into which they ran to escape the pro-Kiev crowd. It was the largest loss of life in Ukraine since the US-backed coup in February, and it may well be a turning point in the east versus west struggle that ensued.
The pictures from the scene were ghastly (warning: graphic), as desperate protesters tried to claw their way out of the building as they were burned alive. Also ghastly were the photos of the young girls happily making the molotov cocktails that were thrown into the building.
More ghastly still, was the US media coverage of the savage event. Even when 25 minutes video available clearly demonstrated what happened in Odessa, clearly demonstrated who was responsible for the incineration of unarmed protesters, the US media all hewed to the State Department line that pointedly refused to pin any blame on the pro-Kiev mob supported by Washington. Said the State Department release:
The events in Odesa that led to the deadly fire in the Trade Union Building dramatically underscore the need for an immediate de-escalation of tensions in Ukraine. The violence and efforts to destabilize the country must end.
Contrast this to US government’s very different position when violence broke out in Kiev in February: even as evidence pointed to much violence committed by the protesters, the US nevertheless blamed the then-Yanukovich government exclusively.
And the US media was not far behind the State Department in its Odessa spin.
According to the Los Angeles Times:
Thirty of the victims died of smoke inhalation after a fire was set in the central trade union building, where pro-Russia separatists reportedly had taken up sniper positions to fire on pro-unity demonstrators.
LA Times spins it like burning more than 30 protesters alive was a purely defensive measure. But if they were all snipers, why did they not shoot their way out?
In lock-step with the State Department, the NY Daily News reported that:
…for reasons still unclear, a fire broke out in a trade union building and the death toll started to climb.
This even though their own article features a photo of a pro-Kiev protester tossing a firebomb into the building!
As to be expected, the New York Times followed the State Department line of avoiding any real reporting that might damage the US-backed regime in Kiev, preferring to present the act of mass murder as some sort of tragic accident:
Violence also erupted Friday in the previously calmer port city of Odessa, on the Black Sea, where dozens of people died in a fire related to clashes that broke out between protesters holding a march for Ukrainian unity and pro-Russian activists
There are too many more examples of the US media’s lock-step reporting on this event to cover here.
But even the virulently anti-Russian and pro-Kiev Kyiv Post could get the basic reporting correct:
A mob shouted “Glory to Ukraine” and “Death to enemies” as the building burned with people inside.
That makes it pretty clear who did the torching and who did the dying.
Continued the Kyiv Post:
Photographs circulating on Twitter and Facebook show people – some presumably in their teens – mixing explosive concoctions in discarded beer bottles before lobbing them into the building.
Why did the US media not report any of this? Because they did not want the American public to see any possibility other than the US government official line, which is that the post-coup government in Kiev and its supporters represent the legitimate and democratic will of the people and anyone who protests against that government or its supporters is a Russian agent and a terrorist.
The US mainstream media marches lock-step with the US government, even to the point of covering up a most vile mass murder. It is only alternative sources and networks like RT (and RPI) that dare to cross the State Department line.
No wonder the US State Department has declared war on RT.