Global media is stuck in a matrix. They have created an alternate reality of their own and are not ready to skip the bubble. It’s futile even trying to get them out of this mess since they view every fact according to their narrative. Most of the time, reality makes them fall flat on their face.
PM Modi and President Putin at SCO
Recently, PM Modi held discussions with President Putin at the SCO summit. For the media, it was a much-awaited meeting as both leaders had not held real-life one-to-one conversations after the first Russian soldier landed on Ukrainian soil. For a section of the media, it would be an opportunity to make India-Russia bind further while the narrative-based faction of the media spectrum was waiting for something negative concerning India-Russia relations.
Apparently, the minute details of the meeting churned out everything for both sides. However, it is the section of the media not happy with India-Russia ties whose narrative was more circulated because they are the ones with more advertising power. A statement of PM Modi among a plethora of such utterances was picked and a mountain out of the mole was created.
PM Modi said to Putin, “Today’s era is not of war and I have spoken to you about it on the call. Today we will get the opportunity to talk about how we can progress on the path of peace. India and Russia have stayed together with each other for several decades.”
Global media twisted it
Out of the 47 words quoted above, Global media only heard 6 of them. Their ears could only reverberate to “Today’s era is not of war.” Based on these 6 words, reputed news portals like Washington Post, The New York Times, and CNN among others went on to portray PM Modi engaged in a fist fight with the Russian President.
For London based Reuters, a bilateral talk is a violent attack by one party on the other. Only this can explain their headline “India’s Modi assails Putin over Ukraine war”. Reuters’ aggression was diluted to some extent by another London based newspaper Financial Times. Its headline was, “Narendra Modi chides Vladimir Putin over Ukraine war.”
Coverage by American media
Sentiments on the American continent were also similar. CBC news of Canada decided to give a public humiliation angle to the meeting. Its headline was, “India’s Modi publicly chides Putin over Russia’s war with Ukraine.” Similarly, the Washington Post, Jeff Bezos’s personal newspaper, gave a rebuking angle to it. Its headline read, “Modi rebukes Putin over war in Ukraine.”
Trying to make up for inflammatory headlines, CNN, New York Times, Politiko, and US News used less aggressive headlines. CNN wrote, “Indian leader Narendra Modi tells Putin: Now is not the time for war.”
The New York Times almost copied it and published the news with the headline, “India’s Leader Tells Putin That Now Is Not an Era for War.” Politiko and US News also used similar headlines with a slight change in wordings.
Given the fact that people’s attention span is at a historical low, these portals played a trick. For the last 6 months, the West has been pressurising India to not engage in trade with Russia. News portals have been highlighting it. Through their explosive headlines, they communicated to their audience that India is finally succumbing to the pressure.
But like every narrative built by them, this one also has no basis in reality. If you read carefully what PM Modi said, you will notice that he shed the criticism being peddled towards India by western countries. The West has been saying that India, which is engaged in dialogue with both sides, has not been communicating to Putin that he should withdraw from the war.
Decoding PM Modi’s intentions
PM Modi had said and I quote again “I have spoken to you about it on the call. Today we will get the opportunity to talk about how we can progress on the path of peace.” Through these two lines, western diplomats got the message that India has been engaging in back-channel negotiation with Russia.
Moreover, PM Modi also reiterated to Putin what he had said during the G7 summit. Even there he had said that peace is the only way forward, something which he told Putin at SCO as well.
Putin got the platform
Moreover, India also gave a platform to Russia to air its concerns regarding the problems hampering the peace process. Throughout the last few months, Russia has been proactively trying to engage Ukraine on the diplomatic table, but after a few rounds, Ukraine refused to negotiate.
Apparently, Zerlenskyy seems to have got overconfident with the weapons which western countries have been sending to the Ukrainian authorities. Zelenskyy doesn’t want to engage with Russia on the diplomatic table. He is even claiming that Ukraine will win the conflict.
The whole world knows the reality
Russia has been trying to convey this message to the whole world, but apparently, once they started to call Putin a war criminal, there was no going back for the Global media. India being acceptable on both sides of the war is the only country that could take this message forward, if not directly then indirectly. SCO meet was one such opportunity for Putin and he grabbed it with both hands.
Replying to PM Modi’s appeal, Putin said, “I know your position on the conflict in Ukraine, your concerns that you constantly express. We will do our best to stop this as soon as possible. Only, unfortunately, the opposing side, the leadership of Ukraine, announced its abandonment of the negotiation process, declaring that it wants to achieve its goals by military means, as they say, on the battlefield.”
No point censoring it
The subliminal message by Putin was clear that it was Zelenskyy who should be subject to hate and not him. Now experts standing on just one side would be forced to look towards the other as well. But not if they read CNN’s coverage of Putin’s statement. CNN censored the second part of Putin’s reply to PM Modi, the part in which he exposed the Ukrainian government.
This is a new age. The new age of information. People have access to everything. There is no point in running a narrative not based on facts. But it’s a century-old habit for Global media and will take time to evaporate. The only thing they should take care of is that they do not end up evaporating their credibility.
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