When what you do is anathema to environmental protection and human rights, your best bet is perpetuating misperceptions through public relations, press releases and slanted news stories. When you happen to be the World Bank, financing your own news service is no problem. In fact, as this story illustrates, you can even fund the NGOs interviewed by your reporters–a closed loop of information, hermetically sealed from unfavorable facts or objective criticism.
As a system of propaganda, it is hard to beat; it creates a false but favorable image for PR purposes, it disarms potential critics, and it plays well in mainstream corporate media. As an example of psychological warfare, it shows that human rights activists need to stay on message, despite corruption of the moral theatrics industry, or the occasional buy-off of tribal communities or indigenous leaders.
After all, it’s the Free-Market planetary bureaucracy and its cohorts in media who are the enemies of truly sustainable development and human rights, not desperate indigenous societies, who, like the rest of us, sometimes make poor choices or benefit from a corrosive system.
Indigenous Peoples are putting their bodies on the line and it's our responsibility to make sure you know why. That takes time, expertise and resources - and we're up against a constant tide of misinformation and distorted coverage. By supporting IC you're empowering the kind of journalism we need, at the moment we need it most.