Western experts in the russian fog
According to IMI's data, 37 of our colleagues were killed over the past six months. Hundreds of Ukrainian media outlets have closed, hundreds are on the brink of survival. Thousands, or perhaps tens of thousands, of journalists and media workers have become IDPs and refugees, lost their family members, homes, health, and ordinary life. Hundreds of our colleagues gave gone through russian filtration camps and torture cellars. Almost every day, we learn new stories about the extraordinary courage of our Ukrainian colleagues and what they had to go through.
But – "russian journalists are having it harder."
Here is an article from the Ethical Journalism Network. It relies on the antiquated "colony–metropole" approach, and is a rather vivid example of the phenomenon known as as Westsplaining. As such, the author probably sees nothing wrong in comparing the challenges faced by two completely different, separate countries — Ukraine and russia, – one of which also attacked the other. The comparison is accompanied by assessments such as "in russia, the situation is far worse (?)" and phrases such as "the courageous resistance of journalists in russia." This courageous resistance of russian journalists – has there been any? I must have missed it. Was it that Ovsyannikova spoke for all russian journoscum with her poster alone?))
Next comes another comparison of russia and Ukraine in the article: who is accusing whom of war crimes. And this part is indeed very strange and difficult to read. “Ukraine is conducting its own investigations and has said it is examining 21,000 war crimes and crimes of aggression allegedly committed by russian forces since the start of the invasion in February. On its side. Moscow has charged 92 members of the Ukrainian armed forces with crimes against humanity (which UAF servicemen are those – the ones defending Ukraine from the russian genocide? From the invasion of our territory and the murder of our citizens? And whom russia had taken prisoner? —OR). russia is also investigating suspected mercenaries from the UK, the US, Canada, the Netherlands and Georgia. All sides (that is, for the author, the victim = the aggressor. — OR) strongly deny committing war crimes, with russia even blaming Ukraine for targeting its own civilians and shelling its own infrastructure (are they sure no refutation should have been added here? Ukraine attacking its own civilian population, seriously? – OR)."
I think Western experts must be feeling very insecure right now. The moscow-centric world they have known for so long is collapsing.
The approach "they are a metropole and its colonies" no longer works. Suddenly, we, Ukrainians, are becoming visible. And we are turning out to be completely different from how correspondents in moscow offices have been portraying us for years. We are very decentralized. We are brave. For us, freedom is one of the basic values. We have a highly developed grass roots approach. We criticize and discuss things a lot. We are much less paternalistic. That is, if the author insists on comparisons. It is all difficult and awkward for Western experts, because they have to rethink convenient approaches. It is necessary to build a new attitude towards this unknown Ukraine, which has suddenly become an agent.
I wanted to end it here, but I will add one more point from the article. The author quotes a CBS correspondent: "Kyiv is a relatively civilized, relatively European city." I almost choked on a mammoth foot while reading, you can't just write something like that :)
Excuse me, seriously? Relatively civilized? Relatively European? And what kind of city was Kyiv supposed to be, Asian? Uncivilized? Or what are the signs of a "sufficiently" civilized and European city? We have wifi, if that's what you mean :)
Thank you, thank you for your attention. I'll be off to prepare my relatively civilized, relatively European child for school, although it will only be online this year. Because russia, whose journalists are "having it much harder" and about whom "nothing is quite certain," bombed our school, and a couple of nearby houses with it.
Help us be even more cool!