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M(ullah)TV, UK

I was blessed with a press release on Friday, informing me that the Iranian-backed Press TV will start broadcasting on Sky TV in the UK. Great news ahead! According to the statement, “PRESS TV, a 24-hour English language news channel, is set to give British viewers a genuine alternative to the western establishment consensus when it launches on Sky on December 1.” The network describes itself thusly:

Since its launch in July 2007, Press TV has asked the questions that the BBC and CNN will never ask; has interviewed the people that major western broadcasters never touch; and has tackled the topics that the western media consider too hot to handle.

They do indeed. They are the only satellite channel to host Holocaust deniers and give a platform to conspiracy theories. For example, on today’s homepage, they “report” about the Mossad being behind a failed coup in Turkey. They reproduce a “speech” by Noam Chomsky (“America’s most influential public intellectual”) and post a background piece about “Obama: the next neocon president?” in which they rely on the wise counsel of “prominent historian” Stephen Sniegoski. Who? Sniegoski! You’ve heard of him, right? He’s the author of The Transparent Cabal: The Neoconservative Agenda, War in the Middle East, and the National Interest of Israel, a book whose foreword was written Paul Findley, another conspiracy theory crank.

Sky TV is going to host the Mullahs’ English language mouthpiece. Terrific! Libertarians may find it distasteful to even entertain the thought of shutting down this channel. But in Europe, some of these messages are forbidden by law. Less than two weeks ago, Germany banned Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV on the ground that its messages violate the German constitution. Anyone care to look into Press TV to see if the same can be said of their “genuine alternative”?

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