Friday, April 27, 2007

Media notes

You may recall that about two months ago, the Castro regime refused to re-accredit a number of Havana-based foreign correspondents on the grounds that their copy was “too negative”.

One of the reporters declared persona non grata and told to leave the island as soon as his visa expired was Gary Marx from The Chicago Tribune.

Now there is an interesting background report and interview with Marx published in the US magazine The Nation.

The piece confirms what many of us have always suspected: that the Castro regime systematically manipulates the foreign media - while keeping a very close eye on what individual correspondents write or broadcast.

As the magazine says, reporters are kept “on a tight leash”.

Marie Sanz, who was the AFP correspondent in Havana for four years, told The Nation that the Communist regime much prefers foreign reporters she described as “starry-eyed reporters”. That is, those who won’t rock the boat.

"The Cubans should never be underestimated in this propaganda war," Ms Sanz said. "They know what the foreign press wants and how it works. They play hardball."

Spot on, I think.


Anonymous asombra said...

There are "negative" stories (at least a few) because the situation in Cuba is SO bad that even the mainstream media can't completely ignore that, as much as they might want to. So what does the regime do about it? Try to improve the situation in any way? OF COURSE NOT. Just get rid of the "problematic" reporters and put in new ones who'll know, from day one, that it's either the regime's way or the highway.

The real scandal here, obviously, is not what the regime is doing, which is perfectly typical and predictable, but that the MSM will continue to play along to keep their precious little Havana bureaus in operation. As if bland, soft, emasculated "news" stories were worth anything at all.

2:07 am  

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