The “Soldiers for Neutrality” rally in Vienna on September 21 caused dissatisfaction with many a Systemling. It wasn’t long before the first “quality journalist” on Twitter was raving about dangerous “right-wing mobilizing” gunmen. However, as is so often the case, his claims do not stand up to any fact check…
Quality journalists research on site and the results are “convincing”
A guest commentary by Andrea Drescher
In recent years, more and more people have become aware of how most quality media works. At the “Soldiers for Neutrality” rally on September 21, 2022 in Vienna on Human Rights Square, one of their representatives once again made it clear how manipulative action is being taken.
Immediately after the rally, Michael Bonvalot shared this photo:
According to his own website, Michael Bonvalot stands for “journalism with opinions and attitudes and writes as a freelance journalist for various media. He goes where things happen.”
He may have an attitude and maybe he goes where things happen. But it should be the job of a journalist to report on what he sees and not to want to get his own opinion out to people with the help of manipulative images.
To the facts
- Anyone can find out more about the program on the rally’s website. www.soldaten-fuer-neutralitaet.at. There everyone can find out – with research or simple reading comprehension – that it is not supposedly about neutrality, but that this topic was exclusively dealt with.
- On the website you can also read: “In order to do justice to Austria’s neutrality during the event, no party flags or flags of other countries are desired. Posters relating to other important topics are also not welcome. Our stewards are instructed to pay attention to this. We are happy about the Austrian flag, white flags or the blue peace flags. We ask for your understanding.”
- At the rally, which was rather small with around 250 participants, 15 stewards were on duty who made sure that these rules were observed throughout the event.
- The stewards gave the visitors slips of paper summarizing the rules mentioned at the beginning. Anyone not willing to comply was expelled from the field. That happened exactly once.
- The police had been informed in advance and asked for help if the worst came to the worst. However, this was not necessary in connection with compliance with the rules.
- The distribution of leaflets was stopped, even if they were calls for “More Democracy” – a related topic. Leaflets on the subject of “Russia – Ukraine” were confiscated directly by one of the folders.
- Also present at the rally was an association of fundamental rights police officers who wanted to promote more democracy and fundamental rights. They rolled up their poster – albeit with understandable protest – when the stewards asked them about it.
- The bearer of the sign, with which the quality journalist Bonvalot documents that “relevant right-wing conspiracy theories were shown”, was asked by one of the folders to remove it or otherwise leave the place. The rally participants complied with these requests.
However, all of this does not fit the opinion of the journalist Bonvalot, who therefore probably used the only image for his “appreciation” of the event that was suitable for a corresponding opinion making – i.e. manipulation.
It may be a coincidence that this sign appeared in an area where the well-known photographers of “Antifa” are gathered. However, my experience from numerous demonstrations and rallies, where provocateurs and/or disruptors always appear where the mainstream journalists were to be found, speaks against it.
Finally – what the carefully researching journalist probably missed – the reference to the CONTENT of this sign criticized by him: The bearer of the sign criticizes the rally in the headline because from his point of view “essential topics are overlooked”.
His statement “armed forces mobilizing on the right” is about as truthful as the rest of his post. If you want to find out more about this “right-wing extremist rally”: the live stream is online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-pqhukwC9c available and in the coming days the contributions of the speakers will gradually be made available online as individual videos.
In this respect, one can form one’s own picture of the quality of the work of quality journalists like Mr. Bonvalot. Because this example here – and this should be expressly mentioned – is only one of numerous cases – how “opinion-making” journalists act today.