By Graham Vanbergen – It must be obvious to anyone watching political events across the Western world that the media is in big trouble. The availability of multimedia news platforms has accelerated a decline in the 21st century of traditional newspapers and even television news, a fact that is not new. The emergence of full blown state censorship in a modern democracy because of the change in news delivery is.
The demise of the mainstream media has of course been exacerbated by a lack of public trust in journalism and news outlets with only about one third of the public trusting it in America. With 18-49 years olds trust falling even further with barely a quarter accepting mainstream media as a source of reliable information, the story is pretty much the same in Britain and Europe more widely.
In America, Clinton’s loss at the ballot box ended with the establishment finger firmly pointed to Russia that somehow it put its “finger on the scale” to help Trump become triumphant. This has ended with public trust falling even further as the cold-war bogeyman is not new either.
However, what we are now witnessing is the very same strategy in Germany by Chancellor Merkel, who, fighting for her rapidly declining popularity is already adopting the Obama strategy by blaming Putin and Russian agents for what will be inevitable losses at the upcoming election in September 2017. Merkel suffered a sobering defeat in regional elections in her constituency of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, with her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) coming third behind the Social Democrats (SPD) and the rightwing populists Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) a few months back.
The consequence is that Merkel wants full censorship of not just the press but bloggers as well. In addition, Merkel’s government is now quite clearly taking absolute control of the public narrative. Journalists are told what to write, newspapers told what to print.
Political scientists and German journalist Udo Ulfkotte admitted that he repeatedly had to cooperate with the CIA and German intelligence agencies and was forced to put his name under biased publications under the threat of being fired. In several media interviews, Ulfkotte revealed how German journalists and politicians are recruited as CIA assets to write stories that were aimed at serving the geopolitical interests of Washington, and not the interests of the German people. It all sounds like some sort of excitable fictional novel.