There has been quite a fuss about American journalist Tucker Carlson visiting Moscow with a view to interviewing the Russian President Vladimir Putin. It seems reasonable that those who wish to listen in the West, indeed around the world, ought to have the opportunity of doing so. Within 24hrs some 110million views were noted on the alternative media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.
Already there is huge direct and indirect censorship in many western countries and the use of alternative media is one way of hearing questions being put to the Russian Leader. With the Ukraine conflict still being fought and the difficult situation in Israel and the Middle East, it is timely to hear what the Russian Leader has to say.
Looking objectively at the situation, we have not seen or heard of many western journalists challenging the Western narrative. A substantial number of people in the West do wish to see the Carlson interview with Putin. They no longer believe the “Putin is evil” narrative and if Western journalism cannot provide the means to hear Putin then they will go elsewhere to find that opportunity.
Carlson has well over eleven million followers on his X, formerly Twitter, account alone. In August 2023, Carlson interviewed former President Donald Trump. The interview was streamed at the same time as a prime-time Republican Party presidential debate that Trump had boycotted. Fox News, which broadcast the debate, attracted some 12.8 million viewers during the two-hour broadcast. Donald Trump later posted on X that the interview had received 236 million views the day after it was streamed. Sure, those were views, but I expect this Putin interview will gain quite a few million viewers.
Many do believe Carlson is objective, but his merely being in Moscow sees many commentators calling him all sorts of names and some opinion-formers say he should be the subject of sanctions.
Sanctions on Carlson would be a strike against free speech. Perhaps rather than calling him names those frightened of his puncturing any narrative might be better just leaving him alone; rather than the ‘pile-on’ which some have taken part in.
The interview is largely regarded as interesting!