Taking the fight to media for their propaganda against him, US President Donald Trump has cancelled his subscription of the New York Times and the Washington Post. The White House is also planning to instruct federal agencies to not renew their subscriptions.
According to the reports, on Thursday, White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement that the decision to not renew subscriptions across all federal agencies will be a significant cost saving for taxpayers – “hundreds of thousands of dollars”.
However, it is not yet clear if the cancellation will apply only to print subscriptions or also their digital versions. Interestingly, the White House has decided to portray it as a cost-saving decision.
In an interview, President Trump had said, “We’re going to probably terminate that (the Times) and The Washington Post. They’re fake”. US President has also called them the “enemy of the people” in the past.
President Trump often refers to two controversial publications – New York Times and Washington Post as “failing Times” and the “Amazon Post” respectively. However, the NYT is an immensely profitable company and the Washington Post is owned by Amazon founder and owner Jeff Bezos but is not affiliated to Amazon, the company.
The two controversial news publications – NYT and Washington Post have always shared a tough relationship with the US President. Donald Trump has always deemed these publications as hostile to him and his administration, along with CNN, whose Jim Acosta had his White House press credential briefly cancelled, until the court restored it to him.
Donald Trump is not the first US president to ban a news publication from the White House. Reportedly, President John F Kennedy had too stopped the delivery of The New York Herald Tribune in 1962, unhappy with its coverage of him.
Not just in the US, the two left-leaning publications – Times and Post have been forefront at peddling pro-Pakistan and anti-Hindu narrative through their platforms to target the current Indian government. The two publications have often given space to anti-India elements to express their hatred towards the current dispensation, which was evident in their recent reportage after the Narendra Modi government successfully abrogated Article 370.
Angered by the pro-Pakistan propaganda peddled by its communally coloured reports after the abrogation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, members of Kashmiri Pandits had even protested against Washington Post over their biased reportage on Kashmir. The protesters had alleged that the prominent US daily was only giving “one-sided and biased coverage”.