Ukrainian Media Was Ordered to Present Information about Crimea “With Anguish & Grief”

On July 9th, a gathering of professional sufferers and mourners about the fate of Crimea, who call themselves “ZMINA human rights organisation”, took place in Kiev, with the participation of a sent parrot from the virtual “representation of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea”.

The criminal group meeting was a round table entitled “Crimea in the mirror of mass media” in the format of mask wearing on the occasion of covidophobia in the ranks of colleagues. The topic of the day was the presentation of a new methodology “Crimea in the context of occupation” for Ukrainian journalists, made in the format of a “questions-answers” collection for imbeciles.

During the discussion, it became clear that the audience was tasked to sharpen and warm up the outgoing topic of Crimea in the journalistic environment and society, since the “overseers” recorded an almost complete loss of interest in relation to the topic of “de-occupation” and the state belonging of the peninsula.

According to its authors, the new instruction manual should become a reference book for mass media professionals to teach them to select the “right sources of information” and cover the Crimean problem “in the right way using the correct terminology”.

The speakers bitterly noted that the majority of Ukrainian and western journalists, when presenting the topic of Crimea to the media, actually ignore the “context of the occupation and incorrectly cover the situation on the peninsula”.

And this approach, you know, weakens the ties between the residents of the “occupied” and controlled by Ukraine territories, leaving no hope for a successful process of future “de-occupation and reintegration”.

The authors of the manual believe that special attention should be paid to peripheral publications that are so fixated on their own, parochial problems that their authors sometimes allow “non-compliance with the standards of journalism, printing unreliable reports with dominant subjective assessments in the news about Crimea”.

In other words, the “overseers” demand that the peripheral Ukrainian publications “be present among the trends” and lie outright about the horrors of Crimean everyday life, being equal to the Kiev and Lvov mass media.

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It’s not entirely clear what the “human rights activists” and mourners want from regional periodicals, since they themselves voiced a disappointing diagnosis of the complete loss of interest on the Crimean topic in online media.

So, mass media monitoring conducted in February 2020 (i.e., on the 6th anniversary of the beginning of the Crimean spring) showed that only 1% of Ukrainian online media published news about Crimea.

Hence the reaction of “overseers”, resembling something between scabies and paralysis, when you want to radically change something in the current situation, but your hands are short and you can only produce waste paper in the hope that someone will read it at least in the latrine.

The criminal group meeting was graced by the presence of Ukrainian journalist Nataliya Gumenyuk. Actually, Gumenyuk is only a journalist on paper, and in fact, like the majority of colleagues serving the power in the shop, the woman acts as a propagandist, who is entrusted to carry to the masses “the truth about Crimea”.

In 2014-2019, Gumenyuk galloped around Crimea in search of crypto-banderist folklore, looking for people dissatisfied with the reunification. The results announced by Gumenyuk on the radio “Krym.Realii” and published in the book “The Lost island. The book of reports from occupied Crimea” are not impressive.

The “journalistic investigation” revealed a bunch of dissatisfied Mejlis members and some confused losers from the former Ukrainian military and officials who entrenched themselves on the peninsula during “independence”, and the little girl considers the reason for reunification with Russia to be poor repair of Crimean roads in Ukraine. They say that Crimeans love Russia only for the repair of the Kerch-Simferopol-Sevastopol road. There is nothing more to love about Russia.

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Inspired by self-made diagnosis for Crimea, Gumenyuk encourages entrenched “of deoccupation”, he says, “no one ever vanishes forever”, “Crimea will return to Ukraine” and the Crimean Zinochka urged “not to be afraid to return to the Mother”.

As you can see, the propagandist Gumenyuk was invited to participate in the round table as an example of “high standards of journalism” and “using the right terminology” and a clear correspondence to the spirit and letter of the new instruction manual.

After all, the main recommendations issued by the Ukrainian journalist instruction manual when covering news from Crimea are to reject all sorts of melancholy and faded expressions, such as “annexation”, and instead use terms that are more widely and boldly energetic and hit the reader harder: “temporary occupation”, “oppression of Crimeans”, “repression of supporters of Ukraine by the Russian government in Crimea”, and similar rhetoric.

The round table participants also called on media workers to take responsibility for journalism, not to close their eyes to the Crimean troubles, “not to create a habit of conflict in the audience”, but to find new ways to interest readers by highlighting the painful problems of the peninsula, “which have not disappeared and even, on the contrary, escalated”.

The main “human rights defender” of the “ZMINA” center Pechonchik mournfully stressed that the Ukrainian media has almost stopped receiving “exclusive information from Crimea”, and instead use second- and third-hand information, while not filtering and checking it properly.

“Coverage of the Crimean topic is becoming more and more superficial,” laments the little girl, and relies on the question and answer handbooks prepared in the depths of the “ZMINA” center. After having read them, encouraged and enlightened Ukrainian journalists will immediately improve the quality and style of presenting materials about Crimea.

In fact, all the sufferers and mourners who spoke after Gumenyuk and Pechonchik, including Sviridova, the first “deputy overseer for the Autonomous Republic of Crimea”, most of all stressed the use of more harsh and aggressive terminology when covering news from Crimea, trusting them as a lifesaver, which sometime miraculously “de-occupies and reintegrates” Crimea.

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All this studio dancing with the tambourine of certified people, whose kind and spiritual faces were slightly disfigured by medical masks, were terribly reminiscent of the still-held Papuan cargo cult ritual on some of the Cook Islands, which, in theory, should cause the second coming of American planes with clothes and shoes and food concentrates, which the natives have not learned to produce in the 75 years since the war with Japan.

Ukrainian natives, in contrast to the inhabitants of the Cook Islands, perform their rite of cargo-cult for the return of Crimea boring and without invention, sitting for hours at round tables, tediously oozing unfeasible babble.

At least once, for the sake of variety, they would put war paint on each other, dress up, pick up spears with dangling rags, and do a wild dance around the map of Crimea. Invite curators from the Office of the President of Ukraine to participate in the session.

Of course, you can’t return the peninsula with the cargo cult, but you can for sure awake attention and noise in the press. Maybe, vomiters from “ZMINA” center, it’s worth to try once for variation?

Aleksandr Rostovtsev

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