Rolling Stone published a piece by Matt Taibbi yesterday, Why the Russia Story Is a Minefield for Democrats and the Media.
In the story, there is a misstatement. A fairly minor discrepancy, but big enough that it misrepresents the position of the United States of America for Ukraine in relation to the Russian invasion of East Ukraine, commonly known as Donbass.
At first, I dismissed it as too minor to really warrant a stand-alone piece like this, until somebody pointed out how Russian trolls would jump all over it.
Then I began actually thinking about US policy in support of Ukraine, standing up to Russia and their very illegal invasion of Ukraine. Words mean things. The US has not yet declared that they will support Ukraine and supply them with lethal aid. We have given them money in the form of loans. We have provided non-lethal aid like bulletproof vests, helmets, and first-aid kits. We have supplied soldiers and given training.
But we have not provided any FGM 148 Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine. The Russians in Donbas have over 700 tanks which are trying to tell the world court, right now, that they found them in old mine shafts. That’s a lie and we all know that. But still, that is almost 1/3 the number of tanks as in the Russian Army (22,710), while Ukraine has a wee bit more than 300. There is an overload of 400+ tanks by the Russians in Donbass – they desperately require Javelins. Never mind that Russia has over 95 battalions on the periphery of Ukraine who can invade Ukraine in a few hours. That’s a crapload more tanks that Ukraine must defend against and needs the proper tools.
Thr US policy has not changed, but the article in Rolling Stone implies it has.
It is time for US policy to change and supply a minimum of 700 Javelins to Ukraine and at least another 700 for training. There should be another 3,000 Javelins on standby in warehouses, ready to ship to Ukraine if Russia should invade.
Second, Rolling Stone should issue an apology to Ukraine and a correction. The US has not changed its position in relation to Ukraine and should.
Last, this is just the sloppy reporting that gives reporters, journalists, and news sites around the world a bad name.
For shame, Rolling Stone. For shame.