by Edward Steen, Secretary-General. Vienna, April 30, 2023
There is too much news, for me and no doubt for you too, loyal readers and colleagues…
Ergo, this is our first issue of a new newsletter, The Week, as up-to- date as possible, and linking to recent or especially relevant news and developments, on or off our own website.
The latest sad news first: death of the world’s oldest surviving daily, the Wiener Zeitung. Or its second death, since it was first closed down by the Nazis in 1940, as Zackzack.at points out (DE, right click for Eng).
Hung out to dry? World’s oldest surviving daily30/04/23 Der Standard, Vienna How the Wiener Zeitung was closed down to make way for a “digital hub” controlled by the govt – just short of its 320th birthday (DE – right click for ENG translation) despite vocal international protests. Statement by Věra Jourová, European Commission Vice-President for Values (27/04/23): she is “not happy” about closure of one of Austria’s four remaining quality papers. Despite its modest circulation, the Wiener Zeitung was long seen as Austria’s “visiting card”.
See: AEJ support for campaign to save the paper, and 27/04/23 demonstration to save it. (DE).
30/04/23 Guardian, London reports Russia-Ukraine war live: Russian mistreatment of its solders + heavy shelling overnight in Kharkiv. Impoverishment of Ukraine population gets much worse + updates on Ukraine war and international news.
30/04/23 Washington Post, : Pope’s final open-air mass on visit to Hungary prays for “a future full of cradles, not tombs, a world of brothers and sisters, not walls.” Three-day visit was dominated by the Ukraine war, BBC corr Nick Thorpe reported. Photo shows Pope greeting refugees – a gesture esp unpopular with Viktor Orban’s nationalist Fidesz regime.
30/04/23 Observer, London. Star journalist and economic historian Bill Keegan asks why UK opposition, esp the Socialists, remain near-paranoid about pointing out steady collapse of support for Brexit.
(See also: 18/04/23 Der Spiegel, Hamburg, : UK Faces Steep Climb Out of a Deep Hole.)
28/04/23 Politico Brussels Playbook – detailed Europe news including plans for EU “Foreign Agents Registration Act” (FARA) to counter lobbyists and others + ominous fate of WSJ journalist Evan Gershkovich, accused of espionage. Ahead of World Press Freedom Day on May 3, CoE’s Committee to Protect Journalists says that as of Dec 2022 363 journalists held in prison was 30-year global record.
28/04/23 Al Jazeera – BBC in a pickle over forced resignation of its newly-appointed boss Richard Sharp, former banker and major donor to Conservative Party for arranging loan for disgraced ex-pm Boris Johnson to buy multi-million-poumd house. Widespread popular resistance to Sharp’s replacement being decided by govt.
28/04/23 Voice of America Four Kurdish journalists arrested ahead of Turkish elections
27/04/23 Balkan Insight – Concerns about Reuters and AFF journalists’ strike ahead of Turkish elections.
27/04/23 VoA: Ukrainian fixer Bohdan Bitik killed during suspected Russian sniper attack on himself and La Repubblica corr Corrado Zunino.
26/04/23 AEJ Can Turkish media break free after this crucial May 14 election?. Interviews and analysis by Danish colleague Birk Sebastian Kotkas, with links to latest on (lack of) media freedom in Turkey/ Türkiye.
27/04/23 Entertainment Daily: more on Rupert Murdoch travails. Prince Harry tells court former UK News of the World editor Piers Morgan, now prominent Murdoch Corporation TV figure, “knew about and encouraged” illegal phone hacking of his mother Diana.
26/04/23 AEJ on: Murdoch scandals – Fox News’ expensive lies about 2016 Trump election + sudden removal of Tucker Carlson + where is 92-year-old Murdoch’s ex, Wendi Deng (above left), in all this? (See 03/14 Vanity Fair, : “Seduced and Abandoned” for clues.)
23/04/23 AEJ: Llewellyn King on Murdoch: the anti-European news genius who went too far
18/04/23 AEJ: Kara-Mursa and Alexei Navalny: heroes of anti-war (and anti-Putin) Russian opposition, both survivors of Kremlin poisonings, now face life-imprisonment or worse.
See also Hoover Institution on Kara-Mursa 25-year sentence + Putin’s openly murderous treatment of Russian liberal intellectuals.
Cartoon: Andrzej Krauze