Azerbaijani dictator turning Swedish journalist into his criminal propaganda machine
MEDIA CHRONICLES. How wonderful it was that Agneta Nordin was elected chairman of the Publicist Club Södra 2021.
With what obviousness she takes the debate stage and how keen she is on our issues, the openness of the authorities, and the monitoring of conflict hotspots, for example. It was not difficult for me to publish tribute posts in my private channels.
Then came this sad thing about Azerbaijan. Agneta Nordin emailed directly to the rest of us on the board that she went on a paid trip that turned out to be a staged propaganda coup. At the next board meeting, Chairman Nordin raised the matter again, under other issues.
The debate was short, because what to say? Shit happens, like. But is it really the case that this kind of shit just happens? I was – unlike others on the board – critical of not being invited on a trip at all. That a journalist acts in this way, to top it all, a journalist who has chosen a leading role in the Publicist Club (the association that since 1874 has been working to “safeguard freedom of the press and expression and to promote debate”). It’s not a big deal, nothing to brag about, I thought, because everyone does, I thought, you just do. To me, it is clear as a sausage spade that travel and overnight stays are paid for by the journalist. It’s not a big deal, nothing to brag about, I thought, because everyone does, I thought, you just do. It is not a question of whether the sender comes from a semi-democratic nation-state or the National Organization of Small Animal Owners. It is the invitation itself that can explode in one’s face. Now it is as it is.
The issue will be addressed at the next PK event and Agneta, who is a teacher at Skurup’s folk high school, has promised to use the example in teaching. – I understand that there are no free lunches and that I became props in a designed layout. But I have also experienced with my own eyes how a propaganda machine works. It was interesting from my journalistic perspective, says Agneta Nordin to Blankspot who revealed the trip. Shit “just happens” but not. It honors Agneta Nordin that she speaks openly about the matter (some of the fellow travelers put their heads in the sand). Still, it is inevitable that credibility is the most precious thing a journalist has. It may seem like I’m trying to create a storm in a glass of water, I’ve debated this with myself for a number of days now, is that bidding trip really important to write about? But even in our safe part of the world, values must play some kind of role. Therefore, just before I sent in this text, I announced that I was leaving PK Södra’s board. FOOTNOTE. Agneta Nordin resigned as chairman of PK Södra at an extraordinary board meeting after the publication of this column in the web edition. Maria Rydhagen is the editor-in-chief of Kvällsposten. Shit happens. Or does shit really happen anyway? What a difficult but still easy question this became.