Trump’s "fake news" mantra a hit with despots

In February, for example, Syrian President Bashar Assad brushed off an Amnesty International report that some 13,000 people had been killed at one of his military prisons by saying, “You can forge anything these days, we are living in a fake news era.”

In the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte has complained of being “demonized” by “fake news.” Last month, with Trump laughing by his side, he called reporters “spies.”

And in a meta-moment in July, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro complained to RT, the Russian propaganda outlet, that the world media had “spread lots of false versions, lots of lies” about his country, adding, “This is what we call ‘fake news’ today, isn’t it?”

Over the weekend, a state official in Myanmar attracted notice when he said, “There is no such thing as Rohingya. It is fake news,” referring to the persecuted ethnic group.