Copyright © 2024 Euromaidanpress.com

The work of Euromaidan Press is supported by the International Renaissance Foundation

When referencing our materials, please include an active hyperlink to the Euromaidan Press material and a maximum 500-character extract of the story. To reprint anything longer, written permission must be acquired from [email protected].

Privacy and Cookie Policies.

A guide to Russian propaganda. Part 1: Propaganda prepares Russia for war

A guide to Russian propaganda. Part 1: Propaganda prepares Russia for war
The Russian propaganda machine produces endless streams of fakes and manipulative stories. While at times they may seem outrageous or silly, they are far from being random. Russian propaganda for both domestic and foreign audiences follows techniques that stem from Goebbel’s times. Ultimately, it is a weapon of war. In our series A guide to Russian propaganda, we examine how propaganda works, and how one can avoid falling for it.

In our first series, Propaganda prepares Russia for war, we use Kseniya Kirillova‘s classification of strategies of Russian propaganda for Russians, and illustrate it with disinformation episodes gathered by EU Stratcom’s Disinformation Review (we would like to thank Oleksandr Nykonorov, Pavlo Spirin, East StratCom Network, StopFake, and others for their excellent work in monitoring Kremlin disinformation.)

Russian propaganda for Russians has a very different tone than the stuff the Russian state serves up to foreigners. This is partially because they serve very different purposes. The Russian state lacks the ability to coerce foreign populations (well, outside of occupied territories) and therefore propaganda is mainly a tool of division. Russia tries to persuade western audiences about Russia’s reasonableness, create grassroots or even political lobbies for pro-Russian positions, or sometimes just confuse people and muddy the waters about key issues.

Russia’s rulers use propaganda in Russian to direct their populace, squash dissent, and instruct them in the core political beliefs that Russia’s rulers find most useful. One of the most useful ideas they push on their populace is a particular Russian form of anti-Americanism. The use of anti-Americanism may be partly the result of Cold War propaganda, but even if the Russian people totally forgot their Soviet indoctrination, Russia’s current rulers would probably use the same idea. As America is the most powerful nation on earth with a tremendous amount of cultural influence, it is the perfect candidate for the role of the villain in paranoid nationalist propaganda. Below are examples of propaganda and an explanation of the role they play in influencing the Russian population.

Graphic by Ganna Naronina
Graphic by Ganna Naronina
In our second part of this series, A guide to Russian propaganda. Part 2: Whataboutism, we explore one of Russia’s #1 propaganda strategies – whataboutism, which allows to deflect any criticism of Russia by saying “what about…”
You could close this page. Or you could join our community and help us produce more materials like this.  We keep our reporting open and accessible to everyone because we believe in the power of free information. This is why our small, cost-effective team depends on the support of readers like you to bring deliver timely news, quality analysis, and on-the-ground reports about Russia's war against Ukraine and Ukraine's struggle to build a democratic society. A little bit goes a long way: for as little as the cost of one cup of coffee a month, you can help build bridges between Ukraine and the rest of the world, plus become a co-creator and vote for topics we should cover next. Become a patron or see other ways to support. Become a Patron!

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here

You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Please leave your suggestions or corrections here


    Euromaidan Press

    We are an independent media outlet that relies solely on advertising revenue to sustain itself. We do not endorse or promote any products or services for financial gain. Therefore, we kindly ask for your support by disabling your ad blocker. Your assistance helps us continue providing quality content. Thank you!

    Popular Posts