- Created: Sunday, 06 January 2019 16:34
- Written by Robert Clough
Review: Propaganda Blitz: How the corporate media distort reality by David Edwards and David Cromwell (Media Lens) 312pp Pluto Press 2018 £14.99
‘A generation ago, Venezuela’s capital was one of Latin America’s most thriving, glamorous cities; an oil-fuelled, tree-lined cauldron of culture that guidebooks hailed as a Mecca for foodies, night owls and art fans.’ Such was the opinion of Tom Phillips, The Guardian’s current Latin America correspondent on 18 December 2018. A generation is usually reckoned as 30 years. Just under 30 years ago, Caracas’s ‘foodies, night owls and art fans’, almost by definition privileged and wealthy, may have been further entertained by the violent suppression of the Caracazo in February 1989, when up to 2,000 people were massacred in Caracas as they protested against a devastating onslaught on their living conditions. The same political and social forces which lay behind the slaughter were behind the attempted coup against President Chavez in 2002, and, with the open support of US imperialism, are organising to overthrow President Maduro through a campaign of economic sabotage and political destabilisation. Gangs have targeted schools and hospitals, symbols of the achievement of the Bolivarian Revolution. But Phillips is not interested in this: he continually whitewashes the right-wing opposition as democrats, and uses them uncritically as sources. His articles on both Venezuela and Nicaragua are full of virulently reactionary nonsense, but because they appear in TheGuardian, they acquire an apparent intellectual cachet.