Sham Reporters Without Borders World Press Index
by Stephen Lendman
Published annually since 2002, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls its index “an important advocacy tool, ranking 180 nations “according to the level of freedom available to journalists,” adding:
It’s a “snapshot of the media freedom situation based on an evaluation of pluralism, independence of the media, quality of legislative framework and safety of journalists in each country.”
Index rankings are compiled from “responses of (unnamed) experts,” adding “in-house specialists each assigned to a different geographical region, keeps a detailed tally of abuses and violence against journalists and media outlets.”
“These researchers also rely on a network of correspondents in 130 countries” – who they are, where they work, and what they represent not explained.
RSF’s annual index is more a pro-Western propaganda tool than legitimate ranking of global press freedom.
Its rankings of key countries have no relation to reality. Deplorable US media rank 45th – in the top quartile of world nations.
Deplorable Israeli media ranks 91st, barely short of the top half of nations listed.
US-installed Ukrainian putschists abolished press freedom, especially everything failing to conform to the official narrative, along with all Russian media, including television for children.
Its human rights record is one of the worst anywhere. It’s waging naked aggression against its own people. Yet it only ranked 102nd in press freedom, ahead of 78 other nations, including democratic Ecuador and Bolivia, Palestine and India.
I’ve been interviewed on Indian WION television, allowed to speak as freely and openly as I write, invited back to discuss a separate issue.
No US broadcast or cable channels ever invited me on, nor National Public Radio or Broadcasting, Democracy Now, Britain’s BBC or Canada’s CBC – all banning views I write about daily and discuss on air when interviewed.
Socially democratic Venezuela ranked 137th on RSF’s index – behind Uganda, numerous other repressive African countries, fascist Spain, Haiti where independent journalists are threatened, imprisoned, tortured and killed, repressive Poland, El Salvador, Guatemala, the UAE, Afghanistan, and Myanmar.
Russia ranked 148th. I’ve been interviewed on RT, Sputnik News, NTV, other Russian media, and contributed to two documentaries aired in the country – at all times, expressing my views on major issues freely and openly, no one ever attempting to censor me.
Iran ranked 165th. I’ve been on Press TV numerous times, interviewed as well by other Iranian media, my remarks published by the Tehran Times, the country’s leading broadsheet.
Again, I expressed views on key issues freely and openly at all times – what I can never do in America except on alternative media.
Cuba ranked 173rd, its press freedom ignored. In 2002, during a visit to the island state, Jimmy Carter addressed the Cuban people on national television and radio – broadcast in its entirety uncensored, including remarks about democracy.
Carter said “at the University of Havana I made a speech and then answered questions that, as promised, was carried live on television and radio.”
“It was later rebroadcast, and the entire transcript was published in the two Cuban newspapers. Subsequently, we could not find anyone on the streets or in the markets who had not heard it.”
Fidel Castro transformed Cuba from a US-controlled fascist dictatorship to a nation safe and fit to live in, providing all Cubans with free healthcare, free education to the highest levels, and other benefits Americans can’t imagine.
Article 53 of Cuba’ Constitution states “citizens have freedom of speech and of the press in keeping with the objectives of socialist society.”
Americans are threatened by mass surveillance, increasing online and other censorship, along with democracy in name only, elections farcical when held – hallmarks of totalitarian rule.
RSF China 176th, Syria 177th and North Korea dead last at 180th. These and other low-ranked nations discussed above share a common thread.
Washington aims to replace their sovereign independence with pro-Western puppet rule – ignored by RSF in its index.
It’s a pro-Western propaganda tool, not a legitimate ranking of global press freedom.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”