You’re Putin out PR for the Kremlin
Lib Dem leader claims Salmond’s new show legitimises Russian meddling in US election
Alex Salmond has been accused of “legitimising” Russian efforts to make Donald Trump US president with his decision to work for a Kremlinbacked propaganda TV network.
The former first minister is to host a weekly politics show on Russia Today ( RT) , infamous for spreading fake news in favour of Russian president Vladimir Putin.
Scottish Lib Dem Leader Willie Rennie yesterday said it was a “disgrace” Salmond had agreed to take a presenting job with a station described as a propaganda tool to destabilise western democracies.
Rennie spoke out at his party’s autumn conference in Dunfermline.
He told delegates: “Good afternoon conference. Or dobryj dyen to Mr Salmond. Actually, conference, I don’t want to joke about it.
“RT are undermining western democracy. They undermined the campaign of president Macron. Attacked chancellor Merkel.
“We first heard about them when we found out they had undermined Hillary Clinton.
“When we met here a year ago, people were grief-stricken that the first woman to run for president was defeated in the way that she was.
“So it is a disgrace that Alex Salmond has decided to supplement his first minister’s pension by legitimising a Russian organisation whose mission is to undermine western democracy. It’s a disgrace.
“Hillary Clinton carried the hopes of so many women across the world. And the appalling reports of harassment and abuse of women in this country in the last few days demonstrate why we needed a woman to win.”
Salmond – who lost his Westminster seat in June – was unveilved as RT’s new host at a lavish launch in London on Thursday.
His decision to work for the Kremlin mouthpiece was quickly criticised by his successor Nicola Sturgeon, who said she had not been asked about the arrangement and would have advised against it if she had been. Alyn Smith, an SNP member of the European Parliament, was quoted saying: “What the f*** is he doing?” Last month, Twitter banned RT ads after US intelligence agencies uncovered evidence the channel was part of a Russian plot to undermine he presidential election in 2016. The Alex Salmond Show will make its debut on Thursday. It is made by his firm Slainte Media and produced by his close friend Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh, who also lost her seat in June.
Salmond has insisted he will have editorial control.
He said: “Sputnik News correspondent Mark Hirst tweeted last night, ‘ Weirdly, Willie, you seemed very eager to give me your mobile number last year for interview on Sputnik. In the end, we interviewed Lib Dems David Steel, Michael Moore and Alistair Carmichael.’
“So it seems that while Willie Rennie is complaining about me producing my own programme, over which I have total editorial control, he has been canvassing to get on other Russian programmes, which are under their editorial control.
“I think Mr Rennie is going to drown in his own hypocrisy.”
ATTACK Willie Rennie slams show