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Saturday, January 29

Strike up the band! Pundita discovers Yukos hired BKSH & Associates

Take a gander at this:
BKSH & Associates has been hired by Yukos Oil, the Russian oil giant whose former head, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, is awaiting trial for fraud and tax evasion. The firm’s efforts “center around keeping U.S. policymakers and administration officials informed about current issues” facing the company “in Russia and abroad.”

Yukos announced last month that it would go bankrupt if it were forced to pay $3.4 billion in back taxes, the amount sought by the Russian government.
--June 28, 2004 The Hill

Thanks to Disinfopedia/SourceWatch for turning up the Hill blurb and the quotes below.

No wonder the mainstream media started playing the same fiddle about Vladimir Putin. But of course! As soon as Yukos hired them, the geniuses at BKSH's parent company geared to DEFCON1 force readiness.

For those who live outside the Beltway or don't work for a major US media organization, no it's not really a conspiracy. It's just that much US news reporting boils down to passing along press releases and background briefings from lobbying/public relations firms. But BKSH is not just any old lobbying firm.
"BKSH is the name of leading-edge government relations consultancy for the 21st century. Created by the world's largest communications agency, Burson-Marsteller, it enables clients to mount US, pan-European and transatlantic campaigns. Wherever in the world BKSH operates, clients can rely on the same commitment: the promise of efficiency, effectiveness and excellence," the company boasts on its website.

BKSH & Associates is "a Washington-based bipartisan firm providing government relations services to a select number of domestic and international clients. The firm, a part of the Burson-Marsteller family, is led by Charles R. Black, Jr., who is best known as one of America's leading Republican political strategists, having served as senior advisor to Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush and as a spokesman for the Republican Party.

The firm's lobbyists, lawyers, communications professionals, foreign affairs specialists and researchers design and execute programs to help shape public policy. Clients include Fortune 100 companies, multinationals, small and mid-sized companies, trade and industry associations, foreign governments, state governments and municipalities."
Putin and his government are up against the 10,000 pound gorilla of public relations firms. This is what's known in the trade as being a captive customer. If BKSH tarnished Putin's image in the course of serving their Yukos client, Putin's solution is simple. Hire BKSH & Associates to buff his image.
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