Remember just a week ago when Fox News’ star hosts Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham were falling all over themselves defending Russia and Putin and amplifying Donald Trump’s ridiculous statements that Putin’s invasion of Ukraine was “genius” and “very savvy”? Or how about Sean Hannity, who spent months defending Trump’s decision to withhold key military support for Ukraine in an attempt to extort false statements about Joe and Hunter Biden from the Ukrainian government?
And remember how Carlson’s praise of Putin was so unabashed that Russian state TV actually translated his monologue and used it as propaganda?
Well, maybe it was the indiscriminate shelling of civilian targets in Ukraine by the Russian Army, but somehow Fox found its conscience on Russia over the weekend.
“Inspiring,” reads the opening of the headline post on Fox News’s opinion page this morning, (3/3/2022). “That’s the word for what we’ve all seen and heard on social media and TV of the Ukrainian resistance to the brutal Russian invasion, from Ukraine’s Winston Churchill, President Zelenskyy, down to 75-year-old women and mothers with babes in arms toting their AK-47s to defend their families, communities, and their country.
Their resistance has become an international force for good. The bravery of the Ukrainian people has not only stymied the Russian invasion but galvanized the governments of the West into action.”
Even Carlson did an abrupt about-face as the reality of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and Ukraine’s heroic resistance, settled in around the world. A “tragedy” he called it, placing the blame for the war solely at the feet of Putin.
But this should come as no surprise. As we’ve discussed here over and over, Fox News’ only interest is in holding its audience’s attention by saying whatever they’d most like to hear—no matter how disconnected from reality. And with upwards of 60% of Republicans reporting a sharply negative view of Russia, it’s surely come clear at Fox headquarters that the network’s pro-Russia rhetoric hasn’t been popular with the viewers Fox depends on.