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18 Aug, 2020 18:43

Nothing better to do, Mike? Pompeo ‘gotchas’ RT by revealing his nonsensical Iran quote is ACTUALLY by OBAMA

Nothing better to do, Mike? Pompeo ‘gotchas’ RT by revealing his nonsensical Iran quote is ACTUALLY by OBAMA

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo apparently thought that ‘revealing’ a nonsensical quote he posted about Iran sanctions was actually authored by President Barack Obama somehow invalidated RT’s coverage of reactions to it.

RT.com “got it wrong again,” Pompeo tweeted on Tuesday, saying that it was President Barack Obama who made a statement we attributed to him. “He told Congress, rightly, that the US could snapback sanctions on Iran anytime and no country could block it. It is still true now. I’ll wait for your correction.”

Pompeo could have just saved everyone the trouble by not posting the quote without attribution to Obama the first time around, making it appear as if the statement had been his own. His self-correction is certainly appreciated in that regard.

That said, it changes nothing about the RT story he is referring to, as it cites journalists, pundits and academics who called out the notion that the US can unilaterally impose multilateral sanctions. That’s not possible by definition, no matter how many word games one attempts to play. 

The people quoted do address Pompeo in less than flattering terms, but again, that could have been easily avoided had he just posted the original quote properly in the first place. Instead, he chose to call out RT and score some cheap points in a manner a diplomat ought to consider undignified.

While 'Got you, it was OBAMA who said/did this!' may well be a response that works on US mainstream media, in this case it does nothing to address the substance of the criticism. 

Diplomacy isn’t like driving a tank. One can’t just pop smoke and smash through an obstacle, tempting as that may be. While it may seem frustrating that what we’ve got here is a failure to communicate, the fact that Pompeo and his staff at Foggy Bottom pay attention to RT reporting leaves open some hope for greater understanding in the future.

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