Making the VOA American
My late father would often listen to shortwave newscasts. I remember listening to President Kennedy's funeral on the Voice of America as a kid in Cuba.
In fact, I still have my late father's huge Telefunken multi-band unit that he bought after we arrived in the U.S. It does not work as it did in 1965, but it's one of those family memories you keep around.
One of his favorite stations was the Voice of America. He used to listen to the Spanish and English services to get information about Latin America.
As you may know, the VOA is sounding a lot like the BBC lately. In other words, anti-U.S. rants and everything is racist over here.
It is horrible, and President Trump is finally saying, "You're fired":
Voice of America Director Amanda Bennett and Deputy Director Sandy Sugawara both resigned from their posts at the state-sponsored international news agency after the confirmation of a Trump political appointee to VOA's parent agency, Deadline reports.
The big picture: The reshuffle follows an onslaught of public attacks from the White House, which has accused VOA of promoting Chinese propaganda in its coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. An email from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released after a freedom of information request told communications staff not to respond to media requests from VOA.
In April, President Trump threatened to force Congress into a formal recess so that he could make recess appointments, demanding that the Senate confirm his nominee for CEO of the U.S. Agency for Global Media, the independent agency in charge of VOA.
Senate Republicans voted last week to confirm Michael Pack to the position. Pack, a conservative filmmaker, has received criticism from Senate Democrats for his business history and his ties to Steve Bannon.
Between the lines: Some Democrats fear that with the installment of a top political appointee, VOA could become a propaganda arm for the Trump administration — though journalists within the agency deny that charge.
Well done, President Trump. Let's make VOA American again and tell the world that this is a great country.