It’s not Tokyo Rose, but a news agency funded by the Russian government is coming soon to a radio station near you.
Sputnik, a Russian news agency funded by the Russian government, will soon begin radio broadcasting at 105.5 FM on the radio dial in the D.C. market. The news agency said in a press release that it will broadcast its talk shows, news programs and financial analysis shows 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Andrew Feinberg, a former White House correspondent for Sputnik, said his former employer is a propaganda outlet, and that the programs that they broadcast over the radio will be exclusively opinion without news. Feinberg left Sputnik in May, saying the outlet did not let him report independently.
“The casual channel-surfer, dial-twister, is not necessarily going to know that this is propaganda funded by a foreign government,” Feinberg said.
Mindia Gavasheli, Sputnik’s editor-in-chief of the D.C. bureau, said the opportunity to broadcast in the D.C. market gives the news agency a chance to respond to attacks from the “corporate media.”
“We’re glad to finally be able to directly address our listeners in Washington. During the last few months Sputnik Radio has become the target of constant attacks in the U.S. corporate media,” Gavasheli said in a press release. “And often the people who wrote or spoke about us didn’t even bother to listen to our broadcasts first.”
A radio station in Bethesda will rebroadcast some of Sputnik Radio’s key political talk shows such as Fault Lines with Nixon and Stranahan and Level Talk with John Harrison. Sputnik Radio is available all over the U.S. on the Galaxy-19 satellite, and according to Gavasheli the D.C. market is Sputnik’s first experience with broadcasting its programs on radio.
Sputnik, along with fellow Russian government-funded RT, a television station based in Moscow with bureaus all over the world including Washington, D.C., was named in a Director of National Intelligence report on Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. According to the report, the Russian government used Sputnik and RT as platforms to forward the Russian government’s agenda and to support Donald J. Trump’s bid for the presidency.