Oliver Stone on RT bank account closure: ‘It’s a media war and UK sees you as a threat’
US film director Oliver Stone has stepped up to defend RT after NatWest bank gave notice that it would close its London bureau’s bank accounts in December, without explanation.
“RT has always been responsible, they are very clear about their facts, and they show filmic evidence. Maybe you are a threat – they consider you propagandistic,” Stone told RT’s Afshin Rattansi, as a guest on his Going Underground program, when asked about what has become an international incident. “But when I look at the London papers, I think who is being propagandistic? It’s a media war, and it’s a shame that the truth is being sacrificed.”
According to a letter from NatWest, a subsidiary of the majority government-owned RBS, which has been made public by RT's editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan, the bank has made a “final” decision to close all of the channel’s accounts, and “not prepared to enter into any discussion in relation to it.”
The UK government, which has recently called for additional sanctions against Russia over Syria, has denied that it is behind NatWest’s move.
But Stone believes that the closure – which the bank is now “reviewing” following accusations of censorship – is symptomatic of an increasingly narrow-minded and defensive attitude from the UK authorities.
“The British people are not getting the news, unless you allow other points of view – Al-Jazeera, France 24, RT. If you are going to create “enemies,” and say you have “enemies,” listen to your “enemies,” and try to understand them,” said Stone, mentioning that he has interviewed leaders such Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez, and plans to speak to Vladimir Putin as part of his documentary to be completed next year. “It’s important to have respect for multipolar points of view.”
The full interview with Stone, who is currently promoting his movie “Snowden,” about the NSA whistleblower, will be broadcast on Wednesday. Going Underground is on air three times a week, and is available online here.