Michael Weiss: Why TV ‘flipping’ tells you all you need to know about this new Cold War
IF you want to learn the mood of the Kremlin, you need only watch Russian television. Even privately owned channels tend to be owned by close allies of Vladimir Putin, and such is certainly the case with REN TV, the chairman of which is Lyubov Sovershaeva, previously Putin's deputy envoy to Russia's north-west region.
Tatyana Limanova, the pixie-ish news anchor for REN TV recently announced that lame duck President Dmitry Medvedev has just assumed the rotating chairmanship of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, a post previously held by Barack Obama.
When she mentioned the American president's name, however, she gave the camera the finger. The station then went into damage-control mode, assuring its 120 million viewers that Limanova thought she was off-air and was only being playful with station engineers, as I'm sure the White House was gratified to learn. Tayyana has since been ‘fired’.