Ukraine's Bold Claim: New York Times in Kremlin's Pocket?

  • by:
  • Source: Wayne Dupree
  • 12/26/2023
On Monday, Kiev's information warfare agency said that Russian secret services had hired New York Times journalists covering the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Protesting a recent story regarding the possibility of peace talks between Moscow and Kiev, the state-run Center for Countering Disinformation (CCD) issued a statement criticizing the publication.

According to a social media announcement from the CCD, without providing any further details, "The Russian Federation has used American journalists who were recruited during their work in Russia" to prepare this piece.

Anthony Troianovski, chief of the Moscow bureau, Adam Entous, and Julian E. Barnes are all bylines in a piece that appeared in Saturday's edition of the New York Times. 

"Russian President Vladimir Putin has been signaling through intermediaries since at least September that he is open to a ceasefire that freezes the fighting along the current lines," according to the article, which cited "two former senior Russian officials close to the Kremlin" along with US and international officials. According to the article, the Russian leader "is ready to make a deal" and the Kremlin is indicating it through "back-channel diplomacy." 

The CCD took issue with the Times' reporting, which it saw as implying that Russia may be trying to "prevent further military aid for the Ukrainian Armed Forces from the West" by some sort of "signal." It went on to say that former US President Donald Trump, who is challenging Joe Biden for reelection, was probably trying to "boost the rating" with the report. On the campaign trail, Trump promised to swiftly end the conflict if reelected president.

Russia is increasing its investments in its military sector and army while pretending to be peaceful. The CCD clarified that the article does not mention it. 

Dmitry Peskov, spokesperson for the Kremlin, echoed this sentiment, calling the article "incorrect" and restating that Russia's military approach to Ukraine has not altered. "Exclusively for the achievement of its own goals," he continued, adding that Moscow will negotiate. 

Russia accused Ukraine of suddenly withdrawing from previously agreed-upon parameters, leading to the collapse of the discussions in the spring of 2022. Since then, Ukrainian authorities have reiterated that Russia must acknowledge the boundaries established by Ukraine in 1991 before negotiations can start. It is impossible, according to Moscow's repeated statements.


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