The Associated Press (AP), a New York-based news agency came under fire in the media circle the past days after a historian claimed that it cooperated with the Nazis in reporting major events that transpired when Adolf Hitler seized power.
Not only that, a Martin Luther University historian Harriet Scharnberg added that the AP had signed a mutually-beneficial agreement with the Nazi Germany in reporting happenings at that time. Scharnberg told the Guardian that evidence suggests that the AP’s reportage during Hitler’s reign was highly censored. To the point that Hitler himself selected which photo would be sent to American media outfits.
In her report, entitled The A and P of Propaganda, which was published in the Studies in Contemporary History, Scharnberg described AP’s reportage an effort to disguise the true image of the war and to “portray a war of extermination as a conventional war.”
Scharnberg specifically cited one event where a unit of the Nazi military troupe raided and massacred people from a small town of Lviv in Ukraine in June 1941 as a retaliatory attack to the Soviet Union’s troupe that conducted a mass killing. Scharnberg added that instead of reporting the damages that resulted from the days-long killings that the Nazi had carried out in Lviv, AP photojournalist photographed dead prisoners from Lviv as per Hitler’s orders.
“Instead of printing pictures of the days-long Lviv pogroms with its thousands of Jewish victims, the American press was only supplied with photographs showing the victims of the Soviet police and ‘brute’ Red Army war criminals. To that extent it is fair to say that these pictures played their part in disguising the true character of the war led by the Germans,” Scharnberg told the Guardian.
While internal investigation is underway, AP’s current management vehemently denied such activity saying that those historical accounts, provided that they are accurate, were borne out of personal decisions of their correspondents and the company did not knowingly cooperated with the Nazi snot by the company’s.
In fact, the AP spokesperson added, the Associated Press, just like any other media company at that time, came under intense pressure from the Nazis. This, according to the news outlet, is a proof that it was totally independent and free from Hitler’s control and censorship during the dark period of world history.
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