Portalb: Distorted Statement by Russian Official Instills Fear of a “Great War”


Conflicts of great powers, especially the threat of war are always a media topic that affects readers and produces a lot of clicks. On the other hand, if such information is sensational, unsupported by arguments, misrepresented and hyperbolized, it is detrimental to quality journalism. In the text we are analyzing, the public statements of the Russian official are distorted and used to warn of an inevitable war between Russia and America, writes Portalb.mk



In the text we are analyzing, the Infomax portal uses the title: The alarm went off: NATO is preparing for a great war with Russia.

To start off, the title is bombastic and very sensational. The headline gives the impression that the article contains confirmed information about this preparation by NATO because it is not initially written that it is a statement of an official and this should be quoted appropriately. The adjective “great”, extreme hyperbole, by the author of the text is also problematic in the title, which cannot be found anywhere in the original statement of the official.

Left in this form, using the phrase “the alarm went off”, the title implies an already done job and as such has the potential to scare the reader.

As for the text, it is a poorly conveyed statement, embroidered with elements that cannot be found in the original statement. The announcement of this media briefly quotes the original statement of the Russian Deputy Minister of Defense Alexander Fomin, which we republish from the Russian news agency TASS.

“The North Atlantic Alliance is preparing for a major armed conflict with Russia,” Fomin has never said this. In fact, the Russian official says that there are suspicions of a possible armed conflict, following the provocations coming from NATO to Russia.

“Lately, the alliance opted for direct provocations, fraught with a great risk of developing into an armed standoff,” Fomin told a news briefing for foreign military attaches and representatives of foreign embassies accredited in Moscow.

The phrase “the military structure of the bloc is completely redirected in preparation for a major, high-intensity armed conflict with Russia” is also incorrect, as Fomin did not speak of either a “major conflict” or a “high-intensity one.” Fomin does not use the phrase “great war” at any time, nor in this extended version of the news, which was transmitted by the Anadolu Agency in English.

The text of this medium tended to convey his statement in the worst possible way with a frightening narrative to give the impression that the war could start at any moment. The text also shows the attempt to present Russia as a force that all NATO member states want to attack.

The second part of the text, after being transmitted as it was in the original statement, is contrary to the title and the fictional text of the author. In it, the Russian Deputy Defense Minister leaves room to remind that the two sides are not adversaries and that the Rome Declaration is in force, which enabled an agreement between NATO and Russia a few years ago and is a platform for dialogue between the two powers before any conflict or dispute.

The author of the text not only distorted the statement, but the other side, NATO, is missing to place the full information on what is actually being prepared, as well as to confirm the statement titled “the alarm went off”.

The culmination of the crisis between Ukraine and Russia occurred 8 years ago with the annexation of Ukrainian Crimea by Russia.

Such incitement to fear and distortion of the statement is unacceptable and is not justified by the Code of Journalists which says:

The journalist has the right to free access to all sources of information that are of public interest. The journalist must publish accurate and proven information and will not hide essential information or falsify documents. If the information can not be confirmed, or if it is a guess or speculation, it should be said and announced. The accuracy of the information should be checked as much as possible.




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