It seems every time the world pays attention to Russia Today, the Kremlin-backed “news” channel, someone who works there realized they probably shouldn’t.
Earlier this year, during the Russian invasion of Crimea, RT anchor Liz Wahl resigned on-air, refusing to be “part of a network that whitewashes the actions of Putin.” (Fellow anchor Abby Martin also criticized the network, but still works there.) Following yesterday’s anti-Ukraine coverage of the passenger jet shot out of the sky, another journalist has quit in a very public way. But at least it wasn’t on TV. Just Twitter.
I resigned from RT today. I have huge respect for many in the team, but I'm for the truth. pic.twitter.com/mZ1g0R7N0D— Sara Firth (@Sara__Firth) July 18, 2014
London-based correspondent Sara Firth, a five-year veteran of the network, quit following a too-real Twitter conversation with a co-worker:
RT style guide Rule 1: It is ALWAYS *Ukraine's fault (*add name as applicable)— Sara Firth (@Sara__Firth) July 18, 2014
Firth told the Press Gazette that coverage of the Malaysia Airlines crash was “the straw that broke the camel’s back for me.” (The network was one of many pro-Russian outlets that floated the unsubstantiated rumors that Ukraine was responsible, possibly because it was aiming for Vladimir Putin’s plane.)
“I couldn’t do it anymore,” Firth told Buzzfeed. “Every single day we’re lying and finding sexier ways to do it.” Nothing sexier than some Putin conspiracy theories.
Update: RT responds in a statement, alleging that Firth was about to quit for another job anyway.
We were not surprised by Sara Firth’s decision to leave RT after 5 years as a Moscow and London co... pic.twitter.com/V4MXTTbqIv— RT Press Office (@RT_PressOffice_) July 18, 2014