March 19, 2012
By Bruce A. Dixon
“Everyone should know by now that KONY 2012 is pure propaganda.” –KTRN
Thanks to relentless promotion by corporate media, government, celebrities and politicians of both corporate parties, along with right wing church groups and foundations, the Kony 2012 video has “gone viral.” Viewed on YouTube more than a hundred million times by now, it paints a vivid and simple picture, clear enough, its narrator says, for a five year old. But is it real, or is it propaganda, and for what purpose?
Social Media Scam Alert: Top Ten Ways to Tell Kony is Phony
Joseph Kony, the Invisible Children YouTube video tells us, is a bad guy in Uganda. He’s a lawless warlord leading something called the Lord’s Resistance Army, which kidnaps, enslaves and murders innocent children by the tens of thousands. We’re never told exactly why, as corporate media simply paint Africa as a hellish and inexplicable place where things like that just happen. The Ugandan government, the video tells us, would gladly shut Joseph Kony down and bring him to justice if only the US would provide the advanced weapons, sophisticated tracking gear, military training and the boots on the ground to help get it done. To make this happen, all that Kony 2012′s promoters ask of us is to help spread “awareness” of Uganda’s “invisible” child soldiers by facebooking, tweeting and repeating the Kony 2012 video, and by emailing influential politicians and the one-name celebrities like Oprah, Bono, Rhianna, Cosby and Lady Gaga (OK, Lady Gaga is two names) to whom they listen. The Kony 2012 video aims to bring this criminal child-enslaving Ugandan warlord to justice by enlisting tens of millions of us little people in making Kony’s name an odious household word around the planet, after which Washington DC will stretch forth its military arm to bring Joseph Kony, alive if possible, before the International Criminal Court for trial and punishment.
Almost everything is wrong with this simple picture, from the missing histories and the hidden motives of storytellers and players to false statements of processes and problems real and unreal on both sides of the Atlantic. In fact, Kony 2012 is not a search for justice. Kony 2012 is a corporate-style PR and psy-ops campaign, a cynical hoax engineered to justify US and Western military intervention to control the incredibly lucrative oil, mineral, water and strategic resources of the heart of Africa. The kind of social media activism the video promotes is calculated to make Americans feel good about themselves for “spreading awareness” of child soldiering when they’re really spreading racist ignorance and disinformation, building a disinformed public consent for ongoing, open and direct, as opposed to covert and indirect US military intervention in Africa. “Don’t study history” the video’s makers tell us – “make history!” But the history that a lied to and disinformed public makes is bound to not be pretty.
Black Agenda Report is far from the first or the only news source to point that Kony 2012 is a warmongering hoax, and we certainly won’t be the last. As our contribution, we here offer our top ten reasons why Kony is phony.
Reason #10: Invisible Children is funded by a core of notorious right wing donors including the Discovery Institute, which Bruce Wilson fingered in a March 11 Talk 2 Action piece as the leading funder of efforts to promote the replacement of biological sciences in schools with “intelligent design,”along with the Caster Foundation and the National Christian Foundation, all prominent backers of anti-gay referenda, politicians and initiatives in the United States and around the world. The Ugandan regime of Yoweri Museveni is a favorite of theirs for having passed legislation making it a criminal offense to be gay, punishable by a life sentence. Credible African journalists like Keith Harmon Snow have also alleged that Invisible Children’s white and male leaders have direct personal connections to US intelligence agencies.