A man draws the dots between the two pro-Russia media platforms – Régis Le Sommier.
Mr. Le Sommier is the editorial director of OMERTA. He was deputy director of Paris Match for 27 years, covering many Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Mali, and Russia-Ukraine wars.
OMERTA presents itself as “a 100% digital investigative and documentary media”. However, its content and one of their series on “the Russian front in the Donbas” strongly suggest a bias.
Régis Le Sommier was co-editor of Paris Match magazine and a correspondent in the U.S. He was the only French journalist to have sat down in the White House with President George W. Bush for a one-on-one.
In addition, Mr. Le Sommier interviewed many White House leaders, Pentagon heads, and leading politicians: President Barack Obama, Donald Rumsfeld, Colin Powell, Al Gore, John McCain, General Petraeus in Bagdad, and General McChrystal in Kabul.
Somehow Régis Le Sommier, at some stage, passed on the pro-Russia side. The French journalist joined the RT France news channel as a senior reporter. Since August 2021, he has offered his analyses and reports in the field and studio.
“I am delighted to be joining a young and dynamic team and being able to work on a multi-media channel,” said Régis Le Sommier.
In 2021, in the context of the geopolitical crisis and the Russia-Ukraine war in Donbas, Mr. Le Sommier could not ignore that RT was a propaganda media working in the interests of a foreign state, namely the Russian Federation. Indeed, French President Emmanuel Macron called R.T. and Sputnik “propaganda bodies.”
As we could see during the Russia-Ukraine war, Russian state media have nothing to do with the media, as they broadcast fake news and disinformation. For this reason, RT and Sputnik were banned in the EU after Russia started an all-out war against Ukraine in February 2022. But this was not worrying for Mr. Le Sommier, it seems.
He went with the French volunteers to the war zone in Ukraine and spent eight days there.
Moreover, the French reporter aired stories that supported Russian narratives. We quote one of the reports in Russian media:
“A French reporter was convinced that the U.S. is in charge of the Nationalist Gangs in Ukraine. Régis Le Sommier went to Ukraine together with a group of his fellow citizens who decided to join the ranks of nationalist groups. The former RT France reporter was convinced that American servicemen fully, albeit unofficially, control Ukraine’s armed formations.”Russian propaganda media on Le Sommier’s testimonial
And dozens of Russian media websites shared Kremlin narratives about a great French reporter confirming that “The U.S. military manages nazi gangs in Ukraine.” As we can see, his interview served Moscow’s propaganda a lot.
He said: “It surprised me (and the volunteers) when we realized that to join the ranks of the defending Ukrainians, we needed approval from the Americans.”
Just to be sure that all readers understand, the journalist does not report that Russia started a war of aggression against Ukraine, committed alleged war crimes, and illegally occupied territories. He is worried that an American guy is in charge of a group of international fighters in Ukraine. However, this claim needs to be verified with evidence.
Support of Russian narratives: “no weapons for Ukraine”
The latest Russian regime narrative in the information sphere in Europe is that the West should stop supplying Ukraine with weapons to help to counter Russian war aggression. And this narrative is present in Le Sommier’s speeches.
A French journalist, commenting on French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to the United States, said the Ukraine war is draining the French army. “This war is depleting – not so much our army, but the weapons and ammunition that we can supply and continue to supply to Ukraine,” he said.
According to Le Sommier’s declaration, “today, the daily consumption of ammunition is incredible.” “Every week, Ukraine spends the amount of ammunition France produces in a year,” the journalist specified. This position goes in line with the narrative that the West should not provide weapons to Ukraine. But it finally failed.
The Omerta editorial director deliberately omitted that Ukraine uses these weapons to defend its independence, repel Russia’s war of aggression, and save the lives of civilians.
Régis Le Sommier and his colleague Charles d’Anjou, another pro-Russian figure in France, present the Russian-Ukrainian war in a YouTube program. As the presentation says, the first was there from the beginning of the war on the Ukrainian side; the second spent more than half of the year in the Donbas.
Despite this statement, we have seen Régis Le Sommier several times on the Russian side. First, in Kherson, during the Russian occupation, on the Antonovsky bridge, before the Ukrainian army liberated the city.
And second, near the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, that the Russian invaders captured during the war, creating a nuclear threat to the whole of humanity. By the way, we didn’t see any condemnation of this nuclear blackmail on RT (ex-Russia Today) or Omerta.
In the Omerta program, the pro-Russia affiliation is confirmed by a Russian nationalist promo video in the first minutes of the broadcast. It reminds us about the “Russian world,” Russia’s uniqueness, its interests, and its culture.
In January 2023, Mr. Le Sommier followed Russian invading troops on the frontline on their attempts to capture the Ukrainian town of Donbas. In his tweet the French journalist complained about the shelling by the Ukrainian artillery.
French-Russian dialogue guest
Regis Le Sommier also features in the conferences organized by the organization French-Russian dialogue, which is an instrument to promote Kremlin’s views in France.
Namely, he participated in a video conference, “Syria-Libya-Sahel: convergences and divergences between France and Russia.”
“The Russians have interests they have all an interest in and have tried to regain they have managed to regain this important place on the international scene. There are perhaps things to develop with the Russians because the question of the Sahel is crucial for France”, Le Sommier said, which sounds more like a pro-Russian lobbyist than an objective journalist.
Among other facts in Le Sommier’s professional resume, we can mention support for Serbs (Russia-backed) in Kosovo and a book on Syrian dictator Bashar Al Assad, supported by the Kremlin. In January 2018, he published a book called “Assad” about Syria and the current president Bachar Al Assad. Both topics go well in line with the Kremlin narratives.
We are still awaiting to see how the professional career of Mr. Le Sommier will develop after switching from international journalism to Russian propaganda. Still, one thing is sure: Omerta media can follow RT’s destiny shortly if they spread pro-Russia disinformation.