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THE TURMOIL IN WASHINGTON ON JANUARY 6, 2021 AND RUSSIAN PROPAGANDA’S GOALS

03:13, 9-го січня 2021 · Джерело: institutedd.org

THE TURMOIL IN WASHINGTON ON JANUARY 6, 2021 AND RUSSIAN PROPAGANDA’S GOALS
The United States definitely have never seen such a transfer of power from the president to the elected president. Maybe Watergate? Well, there is another story with its peculiarities… Nixon quit, voluntarily.

However, if before this presidential election few non-Americans understood the functioning of the electoral system in the United States, or the institution of the Electoral College and, moreover, the procedure of taking office by the newly-elected president, now, the whole world seems to know the chronology of the president’s inauguration almost by the hour.

I don't see the value in retelling the events of Christmas Eve (in Ukraine) and the full working day of January 6, 2021 in Washington. Chaos, mess, shame?.. Such epithets are possible here, but let's hold on and try to understand: cui prodest? Who benefits from such a picture from Washington?

The memes with Putin and Xi Jinping clinking glasses and smiling, have already resonated all over the Internet. Of course, it is convenient for China and Russia (generally, the list can be extended: Iran, Venezuela, North Korea…) to involve their controlled media and demonstrate “their morals” (the Soviet propaganda was very fond of appetizing photos of a homeless man or a prostitute from the streets of the American metropolis, scaring homo soveticus with the “decadent West”), showing how bad things get in America, how they “brought people down”, etc. It was indicating that Russian propaganda was restless on a festive (in Russia) night, and recklessly, with ardor and zeal told about the events in the Capitol. Interestingly, the Russian-speaking media broadcasted directly from the Capitol during those few hours when Trump supporters were raging there. The videos with phrases said in Russian while kicking out the doors and breaking the windows are spreading on the Internet. In fact, to say that the Russian propaganda press was keeping a keen eye on the events is an understatement.

Russian pro-governmental resources, the Telegram and Youtube channels affiliated with the Kremlin cheered. A man was killed in the Capitol? Four? Russian resources instantly disseminated information about the events, using the nut-cracking epithets like “chaos”, “barbarism”, “Maidan”… The patterned posts in Russian started to appear from nowhere: I am 65 (55, 45 – choose your preferred option) and I am the USA citizen. I have never seen such a mess. This country is coming to an end with democrats! I am going to move to Alabama (Texas, Hawaii – the states where people voted more for Trump). There will be order…». Doesn’t it ring any bell?

Let's try to understand why the Russian propaganda machine does that? And let us remind ourselves of the universal truth: it (this machine) works for the internal consumer. That is, giving a Russian citizen let’s say from Surgut the feeling of revulsion to the “American mess” (read – democracy as a political regime), creating the sense of no alternative in the “managed democracy” (read – the fascist-type authoritarianism) in Russia, completing the image of greatness and infallibility of Putin (read – the chief, the Fuhrer, the great helmsman in a single guise). This propaganda also works for the Russian-speaking diaspora (particularly in the United States). But there are completely different goals…

Russia cannot compete with the United States in the military or economy field, and certainly not in the technology. What can the Kremlin oppose to Washington, apart from the technology of sculpting the manure cock sculptures in Yakutia? Therefore, Russia will not catch up with the United States, it will not try to “catch up and overtake the West”: it is clear to everyone that the train has left the station; Russia will never catch the United States. But, it can slow the US economy, and make its citizens doubt the effectiveness and legitimacy of the state institutions, the legitimacy of the President-elect Biden, split the already heterogeneous American society – all this will not grant Russia “growth”, but it will make America “fall”. And our imaginary Russian from Surgut will look at all this and think: “Really, a mess. But Vladimir Vladimirovich cleaned it up… ».

That is why Russian propaganda works so tirelessly and persistently, that is why such joyful comments flew from the mouths of Soloviyovy, Kiseliovy, Simonyany on the night of January 6-7, 2021. The division of America, deepening and irritating the wounds and scars of the society in this country, stirring the pot – here are the tasks of Russian propaganda. Therefore, they will look forward to January 20, the day of Biden’s inauguration. Will there be chaos again? Will there be blood? The better it is for the picture!

And finally, I would like to mention Ukraine. The issue marked with an asterisk (actually no, it is not difficult) for the citizens of Ukraine: how do you think, if Russian propaganda feels so arrogantly that it broadcasts from the Capitol during the riots in Washington, then how deep it can invade our society and the minds our fellow citizens? The question is rhetorical, in my opinion. The response of a Ukrainian citizen at least should be constant critical thinking and improvement of the information hygiene skills.

Автор
Oleh Kozachuk
Doctor in Political Science, Yuriy Fedkovych Chernivtsi National University
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