The Soviet Media’s Portrait of America
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The Soviet Media’s Portrait of America

Russian The people don’t have power in your
country what you have this crime sadism unemployment drug addiction. I
don’t think you’re young people do anything but harm to their country. (Music – Beat It by Micheal Jackson) (Russian) Beat It
No One Wants To Be Defeated
Showin’ How Funky Strong Is Your Fight (Russian) The Americans are preparing for war we don’t want war, we are preparing for
self defense america tries to supply other countries
with more and more armaments what to they need all those
weapons for? (Music) (Russian) Our TV can always be trusted I would
never trust American TV all those channels and diffrent programs. In recent years the soviet media has said much about the American Way of life and its portrait of America is a dark one. It is designed to convince the soviet people that our social system is anything but desirable. It emphasizes
violence, drug abuse, unemployment, and overall
exploitation of the American people by the government, Since the average soviet citizen
has no alternative source of information about the United States the soviet version is probably accepted
at face value. The soviet people however seem to be
curious about America and impressed by its material success. Last summer Pravda published a lengthy
article entitled “Incurable Disease” which dealt with US unemployment and bank failures. About the same time Moscow was saying that there are 40 million Americans who are literally
starving while a select group of capitalists
continues to get richer. Moscow television celebrated the fourth
of July last year by assuring viewers that America is the
quintessence oven on just capitalist system that keeps millions of families living
below the official poverty line. The unemployed are described as having
been deprived of the right to work well Moscow television shows film of locked factory gates and people being evicted
from their homes The message in all this is that the
capitalist system in America is unfair and is in fact a failure at providing for basic human needs or
maintaining continued national growth This broadly distorted statement is aimed at convincing the soviet people
that Soviet Communism works much better by providing economic security for them.
The US economy as described by the soviet media is being driven by raging militarism defense spending is reported to be the
cause unemployment in civilian industries and also the cause of the huge federal
deficit. The soviet defense ministry newspaper Red Star says that american young people are
receiving militarist brainwashing from films like “Rambo”. Also included as
malicious and distorted are “Telefon” a film about a KGB assassin on the job in the US and “Red Dawn” which depicts an invasion of Colorado by Cuban and soviet troops. That same paper also said the President
Reagan has personally participate in this brainwashing by calling on American youngsters to
model themselves after John Wayne. The degree to which personalized attacks
are leveled on the American president and other high american officials will vary according to immediate
political circumstances in soviet-american relations such attacks are a part of a more
general assault by the soviet media which blames
the US for the arms race and says that Washington follows a
policy of state terrorism an international banditry. And Pravda
says that the US arms policy is a mixture of falsities hypocrisy and cynicism on racial and
social problems the United States is depicted as a country plagued by
discrimination where the situation is getting worse
rather than better according to moscow television so-called
civil rights are a fiction, racism and racial
discrimination continued to be the shame of present-day america with white racists stepping up their
activity there is said to be no equality of
opportunity with neither blacks nor hispanics getting a fair chance in American society. Moscow pictures
racial problems as permeating American life minor events
that get little attention from US media are presented in the Soviet Union as
typical. For example in Chicago a Hispanic union
organizer named Rudy Lozano was murdered in 1983 and two years later
the only mention of him in US media is a brief story on an inside page of
the Chicago Tribune and that story was about a march held in
his memory but Pravda recently devoted a three-part
series to reviewing the case as an alleged example a big business
trying to keep the workers subjugated. Another kind of soviet manipulation is
the Russian addition American author Studs Terkel book
“Working” the unexcerpted US version reports
both successes and failures in nearly 600 pages the Russian translation is about a third
as long and emphasizes the failures and
disappointments that working Americans the soviet media portrays the US
political system as an oligarchy ruled by big capitalists who control the impoverished masses Moscow radio said recently that the
American public has been lulled by the demagoguery
politicos whose services have been bought by capital. According to Moscow Radio American
society is repressive. It says US authorities are putting
themselves in opposition to the majority of their own
people and moscow television said that
thousands of political prisoners are languishing in US prisons today as a result tyranny and repression up
the authorities. Moscow has seized on the case of Leonard Peltier an American Indian activists convicted
in 1977 of murdering two FBI agents while Peltier’s case is almost forgotten
here, his legal appeals getting only brief
mention in the New York Times, Pravda published seven stories about him
this past September. Other soviet newspapers
also-ran prominent coverage the soviet seemed to be trying to use this
case to counter Western publicity about their own political prisoners according to another Moscow radio report, Americans who oppose US military policy are described as peace fighters who are
repressed on a monstrous scale by the American secret police. Occasional reports on American communist described them as speaking for widespread attitude,s but that they are suppressed
for challenging the system. When it was suggested to a Moscow TV
anchorman that soviet media distorts news about America he replied “I think that they are not
distorting use no I would disagree with you
because we are showing not only unemployed the
sort millionaires, we showed their private lives we showed their high society, we showed Miss. America.” Recently Moscow television presented the
dramatization but American Novel “The R Document” by
Irving Wallace. The stories team deals with the
suspension of the American Bill of Rights and is set sometime in the future. Moscow television sought to use this
theme to make its point about the future of America. A Tass commentator said that “The sense of hopelessness and fear the
future are dramatically pushing up suicide,
crime, drug addiction, alcoholism, and divorce
statistics” In the final scenes old the famous story
“The Picture of Dorian Gray” the portrait takes on an ugly even hideous
appearance and the Soviet media seems bent on
portraying to the soviet people a similar vision America.

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