Last night, Breitbart reported of three Norwegian journalists being robbed, harassed, and held at a checkpoint in Crimea. The men who detained them were wearing masks, and unmarked clothing. The journalist insisted that they are sure these were Russian soldiers, and claim they are pretty much doing whatever they want over there.
Okay, let’s try this once again, for those that may have missed this very common sense point that I have made in the past. Journalist, if you enter a war zone, or an area engaged in an active conflict, or a foreign land, for that matter, be prepared for the consequences. Especially if you are entering the land with the intention of seeing what’s going on, and then sharing it.
This is Russia, we are talking about. Do you think that these guys give a crap about your cameras? Do you think they care about your perceived right to report the news? These guys don’t give a crap about that. In fact, they passed laws against homosexuals; I don’t think Vladimir Putin is too concerned with public perception. In other words, if you go into his back yard, don’t mess with him.
There was only one country that could kind of keep these guys in check, and at the present moment, said country is led by a bunch of individuals who Mr. Putin and friends don’t respect very much. The United States of America. Mitt Romney had it right during those presidential debates; we had to show Russia some backbone. Our only hope is that in 2016 that Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. Rand Paul, or even someone like Allen West takes the helm. Do you think Putin would be as nonchalant if Allen West was in command? That is extremely unlikely. A man can dream, right?
I digress though. I’m a writer, but I live and work out of the good old U.S. of A. In this country, we have the right to speak and write about whatever we want. Our founding fathers made sure to build this country on that premise. What’s that thing called? Oh right, the first amendment. Wait, what is that document that talks about that? Wait, I got it, uhm, oh yeah, the Constitution! The constitution people! Well, for now, we have one, keep voting Democrat, and we may not for too much longer.
My point with the dramatics is that journalists need to take note of where they are going. Journalists are not necessarily safe anywhere on this globe. Somehow they have come under the impression that they are, but that is wrong. Especially in the places that are controlled by individuals who are not necessarily very friendly. Need I remind you that Russia gave Snowden a home? Like I said, Russia doesn’t care! They are like a honey badger, fearless. Sure, these detained guys were Norwegian, and perhaps that is precisely the only reason they were allowed to walk away. Keep in mind, that according to reports, some Ukrainian activists are “missing.” What kept them from going missing? Mm?
It never ceases to amaze me when journalist, pro-women rights activists, religious missionaries, and other anti-government individuals go to a place like Iran and start making noise. Where do you think you are? These people will lock you up and throw away the key! Don’t be surprised when you are arrested, beat up, or otherwise harmed. These people don’t follow our laws; they follow their own laws, and they will put the smack down.
Russia claims that these are not their men, and they wash their hands of the situation. Very easy to get away with whatever you want that way, isn’t it? Do you think if Mr. Putin didn’t know of, or control these people, that they would be allowed to kick it in Crimea, chilling in trenches and what not? Please, give me a break.
In summary, I’ll leave you with some street speak on how this works. I can translate this in the comments for anyone who doesn’t quite get it.
Aight, check this brah, this is how it’s gonna go down. If you roll up to my hood, with your fancy cameras, and USB drives and all that, you is tripping. You trying to get all that footage, to be dropping dime and snitching on me and my boys? You’d best be thankful that we let you go, naw I mean? I could disappear you fool, you feel me? We got this on lock, we running things here. If you come to my hood, you better come correct. Check yourself, before you wreck yourself. Real talk, yo!
And that is what Russia has to say about that situation. I think those journalists were lucky to walk away. Stop tempting fate ladies and gentleman. Be smart about what you do in foreign lands, and remember, not everyone has or honors the first amendment!
Image: Courtesy of: http://www.tolucanoticias.com/2014/02/kiev-y-caracas-las-casualidades-en-un.html