Saturday, August 27, 2016

Ukraine Unspun

Watch A Russian News Anchor's Reaction When He Hears A Surprising Opinion

RBK anchor Yury Tamantsev gets an answer he doesn't expect on Russian TV.
RBK anchor Yury Tamantsev gets an answer he doesn't expect on Russian TV.
RBK is a Russian business news agency not known for the sort of over-the-top, pro-Kremlin coverage of state television channels. It is owned by a group led by Russian billionaire and Brooklyn Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov.
Still, over the course of a five-minute interview with the chairman of the Independent Association of Ukrainian Miners, the host of an RBK television program seemed to morph from reserved to agitated to angry.
The video below is in Russian, but even if you don't speak the language, the change of tone is obvious.

WATCH: Mykhaylo Volinets interviewed by RBK TV

 The guest, Mykhaylo Volinets, begins by claiming that, over the weekend, "men in masks with automatic weapons" had occupied a Donetsk mine and taken its general director prisoner.
"The majority of the Donetsk miners don't support the actions of [pro-Russian] separatists," he continues. "But many -- especially Russia -- are trying to destabilize the country's east. If it weren't for the actions of Russia to destabilize the situation we could peacefully resolve it. "
The anchor, Yury Tamantsev, now with his arms crossed, takes a long breath. He claims that a week ago he had seen images of miners protesting against the Ukrainian military operation in the region. It's hard to believe, he says, that they had changed their mind. 
"There are different opinions," says Volinets, who goes on to argue that a range of complex measures should be taken to staunch the unrest, including negotiations and an end to violence. Nonetheless, he concludes, it's impossible as long as Russian arms are illegally crossing into Ukraine.
Now Tamantsev is agitated. He answers with a sentence that is marvelous for its unintentional irony.
"Did you see [the arms] yourself?" he asks. "You are just broadcasting the opinion of Ukrainian television now. For what?"
Volinets begins to speak and the host cuts him off.
"You said there are different opinions, but your opinion is also just one out of many, do you agree?"
Volinets again brings up weapons, as the host's rage builds.
"Where did you see them, on Ukrainian TV? Come on, let's talk about what we know is fact," he says, adding that there was no way that the miners have suddenly all turned against the separatists. 
"I don't want to fault you, I'm just going over the facts on the ground," Volinets answers. 

"You're not incriminating me in particular, but an entire country in something you can't concretely prove."
Volinets tries to speak again, but by now the exasperated host has had enough. He ends the discussion.

-- Glenn Kates
This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Bill
June 13, 2014 01:33
Like RFE/RL is so diverse in the opinions that it regularly promotes.

As one of many examples: fat chance, we'll see a featured RFE/RL piece, which calls Dzhemilev out for the ethnic extremist that he is.

Instead, there's; more likely to be Lucas like propaganda.
In Response

by: whataboutism
June 13, 2014 21:18
"whataboutism" - google it
In Response

by: Христофор
June 14, 2014 18:28
whataboutism isn't all bad. sure, by pointing out radio free europe's shortcomings, bill did nothing to disprove their argument that the rbk host was completely unprepared for a differing opinion. but nevertheless, he does have point that this particular media outlet isn't all that much more diverse than the russian media outlets they're criticizing.
In Response

by: Asehpe from: The Netherlands
June 19, 2014 16:49
Well, at least the local trolls do admit that the Russian media is at least as bad as they think RFERL is. That is progress. The next step would be for them to start demanding improvements in the Russian media, so that they could finally raise themselves above the low standards that the trolls attribute to RFERL and deserve more credibility than the trolls want to give to RFERL.

That this would be a step forward in Russian news coverage, it seems everybody agrees.

by: Jack from: US
June 13, 2014 03:05
does RFERL imply the Russian TV host behaved just like Fox News or CNN hosts do?
In Response

by: Asehpe from: The Netherlands
June 19, 2014 16:52
Yes, exactly.

With perhaps one difference: Fox News (or, for that matter, CNN) doesn't do what they do in order to court approval from the government. They don't want to please Obama. Whereas the entirety of the Russian media does what it does in order to please the Kremlin, in order to court Putin's approval.

I don't know if you think this is a significant difference. I think it is.

by: Ray Finch from: Lawrence, KS
June 13, 2014 12:50
Nice snapshot of the heightened tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Normal discussions are no longer possible. So many lies have been spoken, so much blood has been spilt and so much destruction perpetrated by both sides that any sort of reconciliation will now take years. Modern media has only served to aggravate and intensify this hatred.

by: Eugenio from: Vienna
June 13, 2014 16:13
According to news agencies, one of the dignatories of the Kiev junta Ars Yats has ordered the Ukrainian "ministries" to prepare for the stop of supplies of the natural gas from Russia. It become obvious that the junta received an order from Washington DC to go for an open confrontation that would inevitably result into a cut of supplies of the Russian gas of Europe.
Ukraine will simply desintegrate as a result of this suicidal policy (but Yats, Turch and Por do not care: as long as they get their pay-checks from Washington, why would they give a damn about the Ukrainians who'll be sitting in cold appartments in the winter?).
Western Europe will suffer significantly, as long as a Russian gas-supply stop will imply gas price-hikes for Western Europe and will therefore put West-European industries at an even more disadvantageous position as compared to US industries.
So, both Ukraine and Western Europe will suffer as a result of the US policies in Ukraine. And it won't take too long before people here in Europe will start rejecting the submission of the West-European govts to the US suicidal policy agenda.
In Response

by: Slava from: US
June 14, 2014 00:08
Junta this, Junta that. Blah blah blah. Ukraine's election were fairer than Russia's ever were and Crimea's scam invasion/annexation.

Go back to Russia terrorists! You choose: By foot or in a coffin.
In Response

by: oy from: usa
June 14, 2014 03:12
Eugenio from Vienna.... are you NUTS? or just plain crazy?? or completely out of your mind??? or do you work for the Russian government? (oh, wait, that would mean that you are nuts, crazy AND completely out of your mind!
In Response

by: Christopher Morrison from: Lake Katrine, NY, USA
June 14, 2014 05:54
Both sides lie. The difference is pro-Russian lies are crude and stupid. This is a good example.
In Response

by: Eugenio from: Vienna
June 14, 2014 15:24
Dear Slava, Oy and Christopher, may I remind you of the wise words of Hillary Clinton: "Baschar al-Assad's days are numbered and he knows it". She pronounced those hundreds of times between 2001 and 2013. And what happened? Correct: Baschar remained the President of Syria and slowly but steadily keeps killing the friends of Hillary, whereas she is standing by, chewing a gum and has no idea what to do next.
And the same thing will happen in Ukraine: and it will not even have to take 3 years the way it did in Syria. So, Slava, if there is anyone who will go somewhere, it will be the guys like Yats, Turch and Por, and I will not even tell you where exactly they will go - just ask Baschar al-Assad :-)).
Cheers from Vienna, losers!!
In Response

by: Asehpe from: The Netherlands
June 19, 2014 17:01
Eugenio, as your famous compatriot from Vienna once said, "Die Zukunft des Volkes hängt davon ab, wie wir es in die Richtung der Rettung führen können." (MK:215). Still, he ended up being the biggest loser. So all this campaign in Russia to direct the Russians' opinon in the "direction of salvation" (and no other) is not guaranteed. Sufficiently many people have brains for this to be a problem.

You're just parroting one side, and giving the other no chance. Your use of offensive words clearly shows that your interest is emotional, not rational. You don't want to understand, you want to gloat.

So be it. Your kind has been around before in history, and will be around the next time some big power starts acting like a bully -- long, long after Russia (or the US, or Europe) is of importance only to historians.

Have a nice time in Vienna! Go visit the Musem für Völkenkunde -- they have recently accepted a few new items from my host institution, including some I collected myself, for their South American exhibit. Some reflection on the situation of Amerindians should distract your mind a little from the horrible evils and wrongs being done against Russia -- we all need some relaxation every now and then, now don't we?

by: Eugenio from: Vienna
June 14, 2014 11:07
Today - Saturday - the armed forces of the Lugansk Republic - have downed a Ukrainian military aircraft with some 50 Ukrainian soldiers who have all died, of course.
Just as I was saying, someone is about to experience a Baschar al-Assad moment in Ukraine and I even think I know who this will be :-)).
Let alone the fact that early next week Russia will turn off gas supply to Ukraine and then to Western Europe. So, this coming winter is going to be particularly good for a cold ski vacation somewhere in the Alps :-)).
Fasten your seats, guys, because you will lose it this time again - the same way you did in Afghanistan, Syria or Venezuela :-)).
In Response

by: Asehpe from: The Netherlands
June 19, 2014 17:07
And if it doesn't -- we can count on you to admit it didn't, right? Because, ah, you are so much better than the people you criticize -- right?...

Oh, the horror! Ah, the pleasure! But, as your compatriot once said in Nuremberg, "Die Rettung des Volkes ist die heiligste aller Pflichten." And you will fulfil it, damn right you will. No matter what happens to the Donetsk separatists, you will support them, because they are so civilized, so nice, and so right... so much better than any other option around, right? What a pity most of the population doesn't support them. But they can be taught to, can't they? Your famous compatriot, and his famous Georgian pal, have certainly shown many ways that can be used to accomplish that.

Such a nice, sunny day! I wish you a lot of happiness in Vienna. Enjoy your Schnitzel, and try to relax. Life is, after all, a wonderful gift.

by: JLNancy
June 14, 2014 11:30

A fun-read RX > witnessing Russia’s pathetic media’s pretensions, disinformation contradictions and unrelenting deceit re their Ukraine- information manipulation

(Does provide pertinent evidence as to why Ukrainian media outlets are strategically shut down in Ukrainian areas invaded by Russians/pro-Muscovites insurgents. Shut down truth. Facts be damned; they can be too frustrating and inconvenient. Obscure truth with a cloud of confusion. and, of course, with lies.)

Your piece reminds me a bit of C.S. Lewis’ book *The Screwtape Letters”; esp. the novice demon’s frustration, at one point, about having no control over (can’t corrupt) his pawn, *the patient*, despite being entrenched by his uncle’s *strategic [demonic] advice* from Hell’s Bureaucracy.

Yay !!! > to Mr. Mykhylo Volinets for not falling victim to the goals of a Russian media news-anchor charlatan (a truth-aversion –*demon* from Russia’s Media Propaganda Land ).

From an interview w/ Olexandr Ratiy, a young film director from Luhansk oblast, on the situation in his eastern Ukraine region: (6/6/14) >

“…This is a circus. Makhno-style….They cannot manage to put together that the reason for their poverty is NOT in Kyiv; but in the locals that are stealing from them. Now they are trying to reach this conclusion in some way….So there is energy…”

“…WHICH IS WHY people from Russian TV channels are whispering to them who the enemy is and this is why such an explosive mix of, God knows what, energies…”

by: Konstantin from: Los Angeles
June 16, 2014 12:52
Russian are arrogant, they always lie!
Their appeal by Gasprom to courts is ridiculous!
Muller's Russia is more impudent than Gebbels!
To Yatcenuk:
You are right.
Be just to Russia, but not weak.
Russian leaders must be spying against Russia.
Russia betrayed CIS, temporary USSR, but survived only
because non-Russian nations stood-up to Germany, specially in 1941.
In 1947 they put Stalin under house arrest, started global plagiarism, reversed restoration of CIS, didn't return Ukrainian industries and people, influx republics by ethnic Russians.
Since 1954 they made secret pact with British
and Bechtel to resurrect colonial empires and
received from Bechtel technology make more
A-bombs (for Russia only) to crush resistance
of republics to annexations and repopulations.
Since 1954-56, increasing planed destruction
of non-Russian nations, they destroy mutually
beneficial trade, projects and old brotherhood
of independent nations - preparing for Empire.
They grabbed many trillions of non-Russians.
They still grab trillions, only Yanukovich stole
for Russia many billions. They invading their
neighbors to mortify, to genocide, to cleanse,
breed Varag-Prussak and their Russian serfs.
Statistical records can be reviewed to establish
the size of Russian debt to nations since USSR.
Apply to the international courts, EU, US and UN.
Russia has no right demand arbitrary price for gas
Enslave Ukrainians and expropriate Ukraine' land.
Russia has no right block, through invaders in the
Eastern Ukraine, Russian secret armies, the coal,
the thermo-insulations for buildings and steal gas,
helping Russia's "pomesh'iks" to expand Russia!
Russian "kruchkotvors" forge illegal "precedents"?
Turn on them World's legal system justly - for real!

by: PermReader
June 18, 2014 12:19
What to say about RFERL whose authors call Jewish Jirinovsky "ultranationalist" and Barkashov in the nazi uniform and swastica- "nationalist"? Is it result of the anti-semitism or the pro-nazi sympathies?
In Response

by: Asehpe from: The Netherlands
June 19, 2014 17:09
They're just repeating what Jirinovsky and Barkashov say themselves. Or do you think we shouldn't let anyone who calls themselves 'nationalist' be a nationalist? Wait-- the separatists in Luhansk and Donetsk who call themselves nationalists -- could they be just like Jirinovsky and Barkashov? An intriguing suggestion...

About #UkraineUnspun

The information war is in full swing in the tense standoff between Ukraine and Russia. In an attempt to present a clearer picture, #UkraineUnspun will unravel information coming from Russian and Ukrainian media, politicians and activists. Written by Glenn Kates and contributors from RFE/RL.

Follow the hashtag #UkraineUnspun on Twitter and let us know what we should be covering -- or to weigh in on any of our stories. Or write us at

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