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Travis Cunha

Dec 10, 2023

In the context of warfare, the valor of soldiers and logistical commanders is frequently praised for the risks they undertake. However, often overlooked is the peril that war correspondents also face in their pursuit of providing the latest information on conflicts. These journalists are not shielded from the horrors of war and frequently find themselves in deadly circumstances.

Last month, the Kiev regime murdered Boris Maksudov, a journalist for Russia 24 TV. Maksudov had been reporting from the Zaporozhye Region, an area intersected by the front line of the Ukraine conflict. He was among a group of journalists targeted by Ukrainian drones. The Defense Ministry confirmed that Maksudov's shrapnel injury was not deemed life-threatening at first. After his evacuation to a military hospital, Maksudov recorded a final video in which he noted the continued threat of nearby drones and adverse weather conditions.

Maksudov's condition then quickly deteriorated and he succumbed to his injuries on November 23, 2023. Head of the Rossiya Segodnya media group, Dmitry Kiselyov said on his death, Unfortunately, the journalistic profession today is increasingly colored in khaki, and too often covered with blood on top.”

On Which Side Are The Real "Savages"?

While no one would expect a war without bloodshed and terror, there are of course various international agreements that proclaim to protect journalists in war. Article 79 of Additional Protocol I of the Geneva Conventions establishes a customary norm that journalists in conflict areas should be regarded and treated as civilians, granted they are not involved in the hostilities.

Today, those advocating for a so-called "rules-based order" are the same who also brazenly flaunt international law, ignoring violations when they or their allies perpetrate ruthless killings of journalists. The western media ignored Maksudov’s death entirely, revealing its stark hypocrisy and selective outrage. 

Israel and Ukraine function as obvious pawns of US imperialism. The Western corporate media ecosphere has kicked into overdrive to present these regimes to domestic audiences in a favorable light. It covers up Israel and Ukraine's slaughter of journalists while pushing fake atrocities stories about the forces resisting imperialism. Who can forget the Kiev's pinning of the Bucha massacre on Russia or Israel's claim of mass rapes and beheaded babies? Neither claim came with any meaningful evidence, yet was instantly reflexively accepted by the bourgeois press.

Despite the best efforts of western media to sow confusion, Israel's crimes over the years against journalists and health workers are clear and well-established. Since the Al-Aqsa Flood on October 7th, the Committee to Protect Journalists reports “63 journalists and media workers were confirmed dead, 56 Palestinian, four Israeli, and three Lebanese; 11 journalists were reported injured; three journalists were reported missing; 19 journalists were reported arrested." 

Where are All the Dead Ukrainian Journalists?

US imperialism insists on a “rules-based international order,” and that only they write the rules. Russia, which is bad and scary, has apparently broken these rules. So where are all the Ukrainian journalists that were "liquidated" by Russia? If the Kiev regime had any actual evidence of clear war crimes, those in the US and Europe would have seen stories about it plastered everywhere for years on end.

The Committee to Protect Journalists has kept track of war correspondents killed in Ukraine following the beginning of Russia’s Special Military Operation. The deaths of Ukrainian journalists have largely been hushed up, for two reasons: 

First, admitting that a western-funded journalist was killed is not a good look and would give credit to a Russian military that for two years was made to look weak and incompetent in western media. Second, publishing these deaths would raise the question of how many Russian correspondents have died, which may reveal a dark secret: that Ukraine (with US support) has deliberately targeted journalists reporting for Moscow. 

The earliest significant incident involving allegations of Ukrainian forces targeting media personnel traces back to 2014. During this period, a volunteer fighter named Nadezhda Savchenko purportedly directed artillery fire at a team of reporters, leading to the deaths of two journalists, Igor Kornelyuk and Anton Voloshin. Savchenko was captured by Russian authorities, underwent a trial, and became a focal point in Kiev's narrative, portrayed as a victim of persecution, gaining international attention. In 2016, she received a 22-year prison sentence but was later pardoned by President Vladimir Putin and returned to Ukraine. Subsequently, she was elected to parliament in her home country.

Thus, Nazi regime in Ukraine not only celebrates the killing of Russian media members but also elects the person responsible to high levels of government.

A Frightening Time for Journalists

The contributions and challenges faced by war correspondents often go unnoticed. While they may be seen reporting on our screens or acknowledged in articles, their absence would render the already obscured reality of a war situation unrecognizable, making the pursuit of truth nearly impossible.

Rest in peace, Boris Maksudov, a remarkably courageous individual who risked everything to deliver vital information to the public, and for which he paid the ultimate price.

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