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WWF Catching Heat For Alluding To Malaysian Flight MH17 At Their PPV

NY Post – A pro wrestling schtick invoked the tragedy of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, in a lead-balloon bit that even stunned WWE fans, who are used to these outrageous acts. World Wrestling Entertainment grappler Alexander Rusev and his manager Lana, who play comically anti-American Russians, were predictably booed as they stepped into the ring Sunday night in Tampa. Then moments before WWE’s “Battleground” bout between Rusev and Jack Swagger, Lana — played by Florida-based actress Catherine Joe Perry — took the mic and told fans in her faux, over-the-top Russian accent: “You blame Russia for these recent current events?”  “Tonight we dedicate this match to the most powerful man in the world. Tonight we dedicate this match to the man that makes fools out of all of you Americans,” Lana said. “He is my role model. He is my idol, the president of Russia.” UK sports journalist Simon Clark, via his Twitter handle @SimonClark8, summed up world disgust for the act: “Can’t believe WWE used Flight MH17 – ‘current events’ – as cheap heat in the Rusev v Swagger match. That’s not cool. #WWEBatleground.” The wrestler, “Rusev,” is played by Bulgarian bodybuilder Miroslav Barnyashev.

Listen is there a double standard here? Of course there is. If there was a similar tragedy in America with 300 of our citizens perishing, there’s no way the WWF works that into a story line and uses it as part of their shtick. So while I acknowledge thats its not the classiest, most tasteful move, I think we can relax with any sort of outrage. Its not like people turn to the WWF as some sort of bastion of global relations. Its not like anyone is tuning into the Battleground PPV to see Vince McMahon and company mending the bridges of the Russian and American tumultuous relationship. This is a company who’s always exploited these type of story lines for shock value and entertainment. Right in the middle of the Gulf War they had the Iron Sheik waving the Iranian flag right in our faces. They had Sgt. Slaughter turn heel right as soldiers were overseas in actual combat. Nikolai Volkoff singing the Soviet Union anthem in the middle of the Cold War. I’m pretty sure they had a guy be an Arab heel after 9/11. For fucks sake, they once had Mae Young give birth to a hand on TV. Thats not related to foreign policy, but this is just what they do. They have never been afraid to push the envelope and its always made for good story lines that their fan base eats up.

Anyone who watches wrestling understands the nature of these story lines and anyone who doesn’t watch wrestling really shouldn’t give a shit about “Lana and Rusev” and what they said in their pre-match promo.

PS – Thought that chick was Khloe Kardashian for a second

PPS – First person to correct me and tell me its the WWE can go fuck themselves. It will always be the WWF.