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China Daily Website

An empty sack cannot stand upright

Updated: 2013-10-22 19:43

The holy and inalienable "press freedom" proclaimed by the United States is proving a deceptive prop for the US government to exert its hegemony in the world, in spite of the protection of the "First Amendment of the Constitution", says an article of the People's Daily (Excerpts below).

A recent report by the US-based Committee to Protect Journalists exposed the US government's harsh monitoring of whistle-blowers will threaten press freedom. Meanwhile, The Associated Press protested against the US government's stealthy filching of the telephone communication records of more than 100 of its reporters.

After 9/11, the US government strengthened its control over the press using the excuse of national interests and its war against terrorism. According to Edward Snowden, a former employee of the US National Security Agency, national security and anti-terrorism are two almighty "baskets" to hold everything the administration thinks necessary to examine and supervise.

He said one-third of international calls are switched over in the United States and almost all Internet communication worldwide has to go through the US, which provides great convenience for the US to supervise the information it wants.

An editor of the New York Times said when the US president does not want a story to appear in the newspaper, the White House news secretary will call the media and if one media outlet is intractable, its staff will not have the chance to attend the president's breakfast meetings and its interview applications to the White House will disappear forever.

Yet, the US government tries it best to make "press freedom" a part of its soft power and universal values to justify its military and economic actions politically.

US politicians should draw lessons from the Snowden case that an empty cloth bag cannot stand up by itself.