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Truth or Dare? It Takes Both

 It was just after Doug Brinkley started giving TV viewers the facts about British Petroleum’s lies regarding the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico that journalists, in general, stopped simply reprinting the press released issued by BP, and started doing some investigating on their own. What they have found is ugly, but at least their efforts do let us know what to expect. Armageddon?  Perhaps not, but if there is some justice, it will be a small a Armageddon for BP.

Not that the self censorship of news organizations has gotten much better since 9/11, but this at least offers us some hope that journalists are daring to investigate, rather than republish the standard press releases in the future.

Let’s look at a peer country’s status of journalist’s situation: Russia. It appears that they are not simply rewriting press releases. Please read NYTimes article by Clifford J. Levy to see how Mikhail Beketov, Mikhail Beketov had been warned, but would not stop writing — About dubious land deals, crooked loans, under-the-table hush money. All evidence, he argued in his newspaper, of rampant corruption in this Moscow suburb.

It goes on to tell of other men and women who are dead or beaten or simply arrested for investing to find the truth. What do the Police do? They are more lax on the investigation side, as it were…

 1. Igor Belousov, Editor of Khimki, Our Home


Arrested on charges of selling cocaine, based on no physical evidence. Accused of libel in civil and criminal cases.

2. Andrei Khmelevsky, Reporter at Bell Tower

BEATEN, October 2009

Beaten at his home. Received a concussion, numerous bruises and lacerations.


3. Pyotr Lipatov, Editor of Consensus and Truth

BEATEN, March 2009

Beaten by plainclothes police officers after a protest. Received a concussion. Also separately accused of criminal extremism by prosecutors.


4. Maksim Zolotarev, Editor of The Talk of the Southern Moscow Suburbs

ATTACKED, March 2009

Attacked by three people. Received numerous injuries.


5. Yuri Grachev, Editor of Solnechnogorsk Forum

BEATEN, February 2009

Beaten and found with a broken nose, a concussion and cuts. Only Documents were stolen. (not his wallet)


6. Mikhail Beketov, Editor of Khimki Truth

NEARLY KILLED, November 2008

Beating resulted in brain damage and amputation of a leg and fingers. Also separately accused of criminal libel by prosecutors.


You get the picture.

your friend,

Anita Thompson






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