Trump, Michael Pack, and the complicated role of Voice of America

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The last few months have been turbulent for Voice of America, the US state-backed broadcaster. Breaking, as he often does, with past presidents, Donald Trump has publicly attacked VOA’s coverage, calling it “disgusting”; his White House, meanwhile, accused VOA of carrying “propaganda” for China and Iran. In April, the office of Vice President Mike Pence threatened to bar Steve Herman, a VOA reporter, from Pence’s plane after Herman questioned the claim that Pence didn’t know he was breaking the rules when he failed to wear a mask at the Mayo Clinic. Around the same time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention blacklisted VOA media requests. Then, earlier this month, the Senate...

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