CNN does it again – disrespecting Africa


(Posted 25th March 2019)

When in 2015 CNN referred to Kenya as a ‘Hotbed of Terror‘ ahead of a visit by President Obama to Nairobi, advertising revenues from the continent almost instantly collapsed for the network. Drowing in acid comments from across not just Africa but from the rest of the world too for their midleading headline and covert racist reporting, was their Managing Director and Executive Vice President Tony Maddox compelled to fly to Kenya and deliver an apology to President Kenyatta for the uncalled for insult.

Maddox got a suitable dressing down from Kenya’s President who told him: ‘In one stroke, CNN’s description of Kenya as a ‘hotbed of terror’ undermined the sacrifices made by our Kenyan troops, and the value of hundreds of lives lost, and relegated them to nothing. That’s why Kenyans, as expressed by those on Twitter, were so angry. Kenya is nothing like the countries that have real war. There was no reason to portray Kenya in that way‘.
Said Maddox in his response to President Kenyatta : ‘We acknowledge there is a widespread feeling that the report annoyed many, which is why we pulled down the report as soon as we noticed. It wasn’t a deliberate attempt to portray Kenya negatively, it is regrettable and we shouldn’t have done it. There is a world at a war with extremists; we know what a hotbed of terror looks like, and Kenya isn’t one

Other similar episodes before and after however seem to have failed to make an impact in the network’s mindset and shift them to a more respectful reporting style, as their latest offensive faux pas shows.

In what is sure to trigger another wave of #SomeoneTellCNN did CNN Africa yesterday tweet – almost as a mouthpiece of Boeing and the FAA which have gone notably silent after their initial blame game became counterproductive – that ‘Ethiopian Airlines was a world-class brand with a great safety record until the flight ET302 crash put its reputation in jeopardy‘.

Reactions were prompt, fast and furious and of the kind of: ‘Lemme correct this headline:
Boeing was a world-class brand with a great safety record until the Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302 crash put its reputation in jeopardy
@CNNAfrica let us FIX the headline for you. @flyethiopian is a world class brand with a great safety record until American @BoeingAirplanes almost crash its reputation by selling dangerous airplanes to it’s clients across the globe leading to mass killings of innocent travelers.
Other hard hitting responses like ‘I saw this nonsense headline first in @FT. Now @CNNAfrica. And of course @washingtonpost and @nytimes @nytimesworld are not too far off. All paid for by @Boeing @BoeingAirplanes PR money.
The US globalists must accept ONE thing. Their MAX plane is junk. @flyethiopian is GREAT.

This nasty episode peddled by an American news network is only bound to further raise anti American sentiment and in particular backfire on the reputation of Boeing and the FAA, both of which are seen to have been in the proverbial bed together before a tsunami of reactions came their way, prompting among other measures a criminal investigation of how the FAA certified the Boeing B737MAX, a aircraft involved in two similar crashes shortly after take off costing 189 and 157 lives respectively.

From across Africa has the CNN reporting prompted a wave of messages in support of Ethiopian Airlines and bookings from around the world continue to pour in, a sign that travellers have seen through the Boeing and FAA smoke screen and concluded for themselves that a faulty aircraft was responsible for the crash and not ET’s safety culture.

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