Abby Martin, an American anchor at the Russian government-sponsored cable network Russia Today, slammed Russia’s military intervention in the Ukrainian region of Crimea at the end of her show last night. “What Russia did is wrong,” she told her viewers, admitting she didn’t know as much as she should about the history and cultural dynamics of the region, but that nevertheless she did know that “military intervention is never the answer.”
In pointing out that American journalists and political commentators who were some of the biggest cheerleaders for U.S. intervention are now the loudest voices against Russian intervention, Glenn Greenwald notes that Martin’s “unapologetic denunciation” of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on an “unquestionably” pro-Russian network doesn’t quite have a parallel in the U.S. Writing at the Intercept, Greenwald asks: “was there even a single U.S. television host who said anything comparable to this in the lead-up to, or the early stages of, the U.S. invasion of Iraq?” If Pat Buchanan had a show in 2003, the answer is yes. Nevertheless, Pat Buchanan is not representative of American media culture or politics.
Russia Today responded to Martin’s segment, and the hoopla surrounding it, by insisting it “doesn’t beat its journalists into submission” and that they’re free to express their opinions, in private and on-air. In its response, the network announced it would be sending Martin to Crimea to “give her an opportunity to make up her own mind from the epicentre of the story.”
Watch Martin’s segment below:
Disclosure: I’ve been on RT several times and have no complaints about those appearances. If I only appeared on media outlets I agree with 100 percent, or even just most of the time, I probably wouldn’t appear anywhere.