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16 April 2014

Putin's Propaganda Campaign

But when the mild-mannered 60-year-old tried to discuss Russia’s annexation of Crimea in class, things almost got out of hand. “My students swore at me and said I wasn’t telling the truth,” he says. “Then they said I didn’t love Russia or the Russian people, and told me to leave the country.”

Mr Dolutsky has long been a thorn in the side of Vladimir Putin’s government. Ten years ago the government pulled his history textbook from the curriculum for its critical description of President Putin and its inclusion of unpalatable facts about Soviet history. Today he teaches in a private school, headed by a friend from his university days, which allows Mr Dolutsky to continue to talk about the Soviet Union’s occupation of the Baltic states, discuss whether Russia committed genocide in Chechnya and label Mr Putin’s changes to the political system a coup d’état. 

But Moscow’s annexation of Crimea has set off rapid and drastic changes that threaten to submerge such outposts of dissent. In a speech marking the consummation of Russia’s union with the Black Sea peninsula on March 18, Mr Putin lashed out against a “fifth column” of “national traitors” enlisted by the west to subvert Russia. He vowed to respond forcefully. 

His warning – especially his choice of phrases widely used by nationalist dictatorships as well as Russia’s own former Communist regime – has resonated strongly with Russians. They have been taken as a rallying cry among those aggrieved by Russia’s diminished power to build a prouder, stronger and more authoritarian state. For Mr Putin’s liberal critics, it is a worrying sign that the rest of the country’s imperfect democratic institutions are under severe threat. 

In a column that set the tone for both commentaries and blogposts, the conservative journalist Ulyana Skoibeda raved two weeks ago that after the return of Crimea “I no longer live in a conquered country”. In a long lament that reflects the feelings frequently expressed by ordinary Russians, she described the past 23 years as humiliating. Ms Skoibeda said her life had been dominated by western norms, and she had had to suffer through the chaos and deprivation unleashed by the democratic and economic experiments of the 1990s. 

Standing proudly against the entire world had revived the essence of the Soviet Union, she wrote. “It is not Crimea that has returned. We have returned. Home. To the USSR."

Since the Crimea annexation, there have been frequent moves that symbolise a Soviet revival. 

In March Mr Putin announced the re-establishment of “Prepared for Labour and Defence”, a Soviet-era system under which students, officials and workers took part in nationwide sports competitions. The same week, the government said it would restore the Stalin-era All-Russian Exhibition Centre to its former glory. 

This month the trade ministry set up a council for the “innovative development of Russian industry”, manned exclusively by former ministers who presided over different industrial sectors in the Soviet Union. 

Some observers discount such moves as symbolic concessions to widespread nostalgia among a public that feels the new Russia lacks a strong national identity. 

A number of food producers, for instance, have opted for retro packaging designs emblazoned with Soviet symbols, taking advantage of consumers’ conviction that food quality control was stricter in the Soviet Union. 

But the recent changes go far beyond nostalgia. Nationalism is now a powerful component of the Soviet revival. Critics fear that it has distinctly sinister overtones. 

“I would argue that for years we have been seeing what you could call the Nazification of the elite,” says Igor Yakovenko, former head of the Russian Journalists’ Association, pointing to the installation of Putin loyalists in key posts in academia and the media. 

Supporters of Mr Putin dismiss references to fascism and claims of undermining democracy as exaggerations. Pointing to the fact that the communist politician Anatoly Lokot defeated the candidate of Mr Putin’s United Russia party in mayoral elections in Novosibirsk, Russia’s third most populous city, last week, a Kremlin adviser says Mr Putin will continue what he called a liberalisation of the political system. 

Earlier signs of this were the election of the opposition candidate Yevgeny Roizman as mayor of Ekaterinburg and that the opposition leader Alexei Navalny was allowed to run for Moscow mayor last year. 

However, some Kremlin loyalists agree that Mr Putin is tightening his grip. “He is convinced that the west will behave the same way in Russia as in Ukraine and ultimately try to unseat him,” says Sergei Markov, a political consultant close to the Kremlin. 

“Therefore all resources, not just regular politicians but also [non-government organisations], some media and crucial players, must be consolidated.” Mr Markov says that to ensure mass support for Mr Putin, the formation of a new ideology is under way. “What exactly it will be is not clear yet, but it could be close to [France’s Marine] Le Pen. It could be close to the Freedom party of Austria,” he says. 

This month a representative of Mr Putin’s regime in the US signalled there could be more revisionist steps. Andranik Migranyan, the head of the US-based Institute for Democracy and Cooperation, a Putin-backed think-tank, published a commentary in which he rejected criticism of the Crimea annexation that compared it with Germany’s aggressive moves against its neighbours in the 1930s. 

“One must distinguish between Hitler before 1939 and Hitler after 1939,” he wrote. “The thing is that Hitler collected [German] lands. If he had become famous only for uniting without a drop of blood Germany with Austria, Sudetenland and Memel, in fact completing what Bismarck failed to do, and if he had stopped there, then he would have remained a politician of the highest class.” 

Mr Migranyan’s argument appears to echo remarks made by Mr Putin on March 18. The president said the collapse of the Soviet Union had left the Russian people as one of the world’s largest separated nations. 

As Mr Dolutsky experienced as early as 2003, the Russian president is intent on tinkering with the history curriculum. Since last year there has been an initiative to replace a broad range of textbooks with just two or three that follow a unified concept. Among the details that are certain not to appear in the new textbooks are atrocities committed by the Red Army in eastern Europe, questions about how Russia won some of its territory, and a detailed history of Ukraine other than as part of Russia. 

“The main point is that pupils must never question that our country is always right,” says Nikita Petrov, a historian at Memorial, an organisation that specialises in Soviet-era repression. “That means that all around us will have one map of history, and we will have a completely different one. And the contradiction between Russia and the outside world only deepens because nobody is trying to overcome it.” 

The government is not prepared to stop at history textbooks. A member of the United Russia party said this week a similar unified concept such as the one adopted for the history curriculum was also necessary for literature and language textbooks. 

Mr Putin, addressing the group of historians he commissioned to work on the new books, said a unified approach to teaching history “does not mean one state-defined, official, ideologised line of thought”. But he dismissed some existing books as “ideological rubbish” that sought to belittle the Soviet people. 

The government is also working on a set of cultural policy guidelines, a project that has already sent shudders through Russia’s liberal intelligentsia. 

The paper stresses the “rejection of the principles of multiculturalism and tolerance. The preservation of a unified cultural code calls for the rejection of state support for cultural projects that impose value norms alien to [our] society”. 

It also postulates that “liberal western” concepts that suggest a universal path of development must be rejected and that, in extreme cases, government must protect Russian society from the negative impact of inappropriate cultural products.

Even members of the Duma, Russia’s lower house of parliament, have been attending political schooling sessions. There they are guided to adhere to “Orthodoxy, Autocracy, Nationality”, the three main values propagated by Count Sergei Uvarov, a 19th-century Russian statesman. “They are establishing a kind of hereditary line right from Uvarov to Stalin and then Putin,” says a person who took part in one of the sessions. 

In line with such ideas, and true to Mr Putin’s warning about subversive forces, some modern artists and critics of his policies are feeling a renewed push of repression. 

Late last month the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, or MGIMO, evicted Andrei Zubov, a renowned historian, for his comparison of the annexation of Crimea with Hitler’s 1938 grab of Sudetenland. MGIMO, the university where the foreign ministry trains most of Russia’s diplomats, denounced Mr Zubov’s criticism as “amoral”, a term that could block the professor’s employment elsewhere in Russia. 

The university was later forced to reinstate him after the eviction was found to be unlawful. 

But it is not just academics who are under pressure. Loyalists of the president have set up a website where users can propose people to be denounced as “traitors”. The list already features 21 politicians, artists and journalists, topped by Mr Navalny. 

“Many people clearly understand that if the annexation of Crimea is accepted, then the real fascist state will emerge here and not in Kiev,” says Mr Zubov, in a reference to Russian propaganda accusations that the new Ukrainian authorities are fascist. 

“There will be a partly free economy, state companies, partly open borders, but primacy of one ideology and an aggressive foreign policy,” he warns. “This will not be a revival of the Soviet Union but a revival of fascist statehood in its purest state, in the Mussolini sense. There will not be racial policies and no Holocaust. But there will be a basic principle: the state is everything.” 

While the Ukraine crisis has triggered this latest mutation of Russia’s political system, Mr Putin’s critics argue it has been long in the making. 

Some spaces for free thought remain. When Mr Dolutsky goes to class, he still carries his own history textbook, written in 1991. It carries marks in all the colours of the rainbow as reminders of where to ask questions and where to use other materials, and some in black – the marks left by Mr Putin’s censors 11 years ago. 

But the teacher says his job has become far more difficult. “Twenty years ago, my students were looking to me for the truth. I was supposed to tell them that imperialism was decaying but in fact socialism was rotting away right in front of our eyes, so there was no need to prove to them that we were living badly. Now, they need to be enlightened, but they don’t want to be.” 

Censorship: Authorities close in on the web 

The Russian government is determined to control the internet as part of its quest to tighten the noose around free speech. 

Under legislation that took effect on February 1, the internet regulator can block websites carrying content that is deemed “extremist” or suspected of inciting mass disturbances – merely on the orders of the procurator-general’s office. The authorities are making good use of their new powers. As of April 13, the procurator-general’s office had ordered 107 such blockages, at least 80 of which targeted pages with political content. 

“The internet in Russia is becoming a very different place,” says Sergei Buntman, deputy editor of the liberal radio station Ekho Moskvy. Its website was taken down and only went online again after it stopped hosting a blog by opposition leader Alexei Navalny. 

After President Vladimir Putin brought almost all traditional media either directly under state ownership or into a position where they could be indirectly controlled, online news sites, blogs and social media had become the main source of information and debate for his critics. 

Although this space is shrinking, experts say it is unlikely to disappear. “Russia is worlds apart from China, which identified the ‘threat’ posed by the internet upfront and made sure the internet that developed there was domesticised from the beginning,” says Steven Wilson, who teaches Russian politics at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. 

Apart from theGreat Firewall”, which helps block unwanted foreign-based content, China also has a vast quantity of homegrown internet services and web applications that mimic their global counterparts but help censor content on Beijing’s orders. “Blocking is easy but you can’t just build an ecosystem like this from scratch,” says Mr Wilson. 

Russian experts believe that it would be politically unwise or even impossible for Moscow to suddenly impose a heavy censorship regime with systemic, large-scale permanent blocking because the public has grown used to a largely open space over the past 20 years. 

The authorities are much more likely to apply pressure selectively. Apart from the new blocking rights, Russian law also gives a wide range of security services almost unfettered access to online communications data. 

Despite those restrictions, the internet could still serve as a powerful tool capable of undermining Mr Putin’s regime – if someone tried. 

“The web played an important role in the colour revolutions and the Arab spring because there was a spark in the first place. I don’t see that spark in Russia yet,” says Mr Wilson.

Russian to CNN: Country’s Propaganda Even More Hysterical Than in Soviet Era

By Washington Free Beacon Staff 

Leon Aron, the director of Russian Studies for the American Enterprise Institute, said Wednesday on CNN’s The Lead that the sheer hysteria of today’s anti-Western propaganda out of Russia exceeds anything he saw from the Soviet era.

One recent example from demonstrated the absurd lengths to which state TV will go. Three Russian TV channels showed the same interview but portrayed the man in it differently each time, calling him in turn a German spy, a repentant extremist and a pediatric surgeon beaten by neo-Nazis.

“I was there in 1968, a teenager in Moscow, and I don’t recall the level of propaganda reaching this amount of frenzy and brazenness and hysteria,” Aron said. “For example, nobody used a term for forced sexual intercourse to describe U.S. policies. [Vladimir] Putin did in his speech on March 18.” 

Even though many Russians are aware of the pro-Kremlin policy of state television in the country, the propaganda meant to elevate Putin as a powerful leader is still effective, Aron said. All of Putin’s attempts to look macho may amuse people in the West, but he cares little about their opinions.

“It doesn’t matter that you laugh, and by the way, that’s the difference with the Soviet leaders,” he said. “They cared very much whether the West laughed at them. Putin doesn’t care. He cares about his political base, and the idea is here’s our guy. He’s strong, he’s macho, he knows how to do things, and he is the image of a new Russia.”  

Journalists struggle to disseminate the truth about recent events.

By Jillian Kay Melchior 

Ivan Yakovina, a Russian foreign correspondent, sat across from me in a Cupid-themed bar not far from Kiev’s Independence Square, downing mugs of beer and complaining about the evils of Putin’s propaganda — in other words, expressing the views that recently cost him his job.

“[Galina Timchenko], our editor-in-chief, was there [in Moscow], and she was told, ‘Keep [your reporters] calm or take them away from Ukraine. . . . [The demonstrations in Kiev] should look like a complete mess: dirt, blood, destruction, mud,’” Yakovina says, adding that the publication was instructed to rely mostly on the stories from Russia’s state-run media instead of original reporting. “She was a very heroic woman, resisting against this for months.

“Reporting the truth in a time of lying is a crime in itself,” Yakovina said in perfectly fluent English, one of several languages he speaks. He lives in Lviv, the only city in Ukraine that is remotely tolerable, he insists. Despite his general dislike for the country, he and several of his colleagues at the popular Russian news site wrote truthfully about recent events there, which didn’t go over well in Moscow, Yakovina says. 

Propaganda has played a central role as the situation has escalated in Ukraine. Disseminated by Russia and, until recently, the Yanukovych regime, misinformation has undermined the efforts of the Maidan reformers and also contributed significantly to the destabilization of Ukraine’s eastern regions. 

The control of information is part of Putin’s strategy to rebuild post-Soviet Russia through aggression, writes Roman Zvarcyh, a legal adviser and deputy campaign manager to Ukrainian presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko, in an e-mail. “The annexation of the Crimean peninsula and the subsequent military subterfuge that we are now witnessing in the eastern provinces of Ukraine is the culmination of an information war that Moscow has been aggressively promoting since the events of the Orange Revolution in 2004,” Zvarcyh says. “The general thrust of this propaganda campaign is to undermine any sense of Ukrainian national identity, particularly in those regions that were historically victimized by successive waves of Russification.” 

Yakovina tells me that during the demonstrations in Maidan Nezalezhnosti, Russia promoted the idea that many of the protesters were extremists, fascists, and Nazi sympathizers. “I’ve never seen an ultra-nationalist or a fascist [in the Maidan protests],” Yakovina says. “It’s BS. . . . It simply wasn’t true. They don’t want to be a part of some corrupt, evil system, which was the Yanukovich [regime].” 

My interviews with Ukrainians who participated in the Maidan protests suggest the same; all of those I’ve spoken with say they demonstrated for rule of law and an end to dictatorship and corruption, and that they resorted to violence only as a means of self-defense, after Yanukovych’s troops began brutalizing and murdering protesters. 


Nevertheless, under Putin, the Russian media have used topics that resonate, carrying special political, moral, or emotional meaning, to manipulate public opinion. For example, his repression of gays resonates with many who oppose homosexuality. In Russia, he appeals to nationalism; in East Ukraine, he makes sure the message is widely disseminated that the protesters at the Maidan were fascist or anti-Semitic, which plays on the East’s painful history. At both borders, he claims that the Ukrainian government is discriminating against those who speak Russian — an absurd claim, given its prevalent usage in even Kiev. 

“They’re using the darkest sides of simple people’s souls, and they’ve been very successful,” Yakovina says. “People [in Russia and eastern Ukraine] are eating whatever they give them. Any [country] with a good propaganda machine can make their people believe any f***ing thing.” 

That sentiment is echoed by Vadym Hudyma, a popular Ukrainian social-media activist who supported the Maidan protests. He says that people in eastern Ukraine, which is more industrial and poorer, get their news from TV and print publications, which are mostly Russian-dominated. 

“It’s been three months of huge propaganda from [Russia], and so of course when the supposed ‘right-wingers’ come to power, [Eastern Ukrainians] were really, truly scared,” Hudyma says. “For months, they had heard these are bad guys, they are fascists, they are going to kill us.” Even so, as I wrote yesterday, credible Ukrainian sociologists have recently reported that the majority of citizens in the south and east oppose Russian military intervention and annexation.

Recently, the information wars have centered around the extent to which Russian troops are behind the separatist movement in eastern Ukraine. An April 2014 statement from the Russian government claimed that “these are speculations that rest on imprecise information, according to President Putin.”

That stretches credibility to the breaking point, as attentive observers know. In the past few days, both general secretary of NATO Anders Rassmussen and American U.N. ambassador Samantha Powers have spoken to the press about the strong evidence of Russian backing behind the violent separatists in eastern Ukraine. Meanwhile, guns popping up in the conflicted eastern regions are the same types used by the Russian army, Ukraine’s acting foreign minister has said. And reports abound of plainclothes Russian troops (“little green men,” as the Ukrainians have taken to calling them) in the cities that are experiencing turmoil.

Yakovina says Putin tried the same strategy of outright falsehood during the crises in Syria and Libya, tailoring a message to fit the international press. “They call it ‘our point of view,’ so if you don’t like these blatant lies, you are against freedom of speech, or they say you are being paid by someone,” he explains. 

But drawing international attention to the real situation in Ukraine is difficult, says Kateryna Venzhyk, editor-in-chief of, an online business magazine. Venzhyk recently managed to garner some attention through a carefully orchestrated publicity campaign that involved racy T-shirts urging Ukrainian women to withhold sex from Russian men. 

“On one side, it’s Russian propaganda, and on the other side, it’s [recently been] media owned by Yanukovych and his ‘family,’” Venzhyk says. “You can have Russian propaganda, and you can have [corrupt] Ukrainian propaganda, but you can’t have the truth.” 

The repressive Yanukovych administration tried to control the media over the past three years using the government, Venzhyk explains. She says officials threatened to revoke news licenses, impose higher taxes, or evict publications from their offices whenever they wrote journalism critical of the regime. “You can’t go to court with this,” she says, “because that’s ‘family,’ too.” 

Hanna Hrabarska, a young journalist and social-media activist who works with the Hudyma on a pro-Ukrainian social-media campaign, says that during the Yanukovych days she had a minder who followed her everywhere. One day, he contacted her and started telling her creepy details: He not only knew where she lived, he had noticed her new glasses, she said. “It’s not special,” she tells me casually. “Every journalist had someone following them [then].” 

Freedom of the press in Ukraine has significantly improved since Yanukovych was defenestrated, but the years of restrictions weren’t without consequence. Many Ukrainians don’t know which media they can trust. Meanwhile, the news reports supplied directly by Russia’s state-owned media are pervasive.

Yakovina, the Russian journalist, says that, although Russia has engaged in propaganda campaigns for decades, in the past ten years, “it became an absolutely arrogant lie. They don’t even care about it looking like truth. They just want to make people . . . absolutely mis-oriented, so they don’t know anything truthful. It’s scary — it’s like 1984. They just lie, not because they want to achieve anything – that’s just been how it works. . . . The final idea, I think, is just to build this imaginary world that would have history, myth, ideology, religion — all based in lies. An absolutely imaginary political life. Anything that is real is considered dangerous, un-Russian, disturbing, prevented. . . . It’s dangerous and suspicious, and they want to eliminate it.”

 Putin’s Crimea Propaganda Machine

To justify its invasion of Crimea, the Kremlin and state-run media went into full fabrication mode this weekend. Here are the lies that Russia is telling its viewers back home.

By Oleg Shynkarenko

Russia invaded Ukraine over the weekend, justifying its incursion by claming it needed to protect Crimea’s ethnic Russian population from supposed neo-Nazi extremists.  This was pure propaganda, of course—Vladmir Putin has been keen to annex land that used to be part of Russia, as he did in Georgia in 2008, and seems to think that the Ukrainian army will and should immediately surrender to the Russian one.

Still, Putin needed a story to spin, no matter how full of holes, and thus the neo-Nazi claims. But as it turns out, Crimea’s streets are not exactly paved with extremists—a fact that has proven troublesome for Russian state TV channels looking to find token far-right bogeymen. They’ve had to resort to tricks to get the right characters for Russian audiences—making much, for instance, of Sachko Bilyi, a buffoon who visited a local parliament with his AK-47 machine gun. No one in Ukraine thinks much of Bilyi, other than that he’s a clown, but Russian TV is now claiming that squads made up of thousands of Bilyis are terrorizing Ukraine’s civilians and intimidating MPs.

The Russian media also reported on “skirmishes” on the streets of Crimea and showed a video about “extremists in Crimea attacking Russian soldiers.” As it turns out, the video was actually made on February 20, when close to 100 protesters, aid workers and journalists were shot by snipers in Kiev. That day, several cameramen filmed the terror on location—one of them standing nearby for a very long time. When his video surfaced on Russian TV, purporting to be from Crimea, it made many suspect that the cameraman was from Russia and that Russian journalists may have had an arrangement with the snipers so that they wouldn’t draw fire.

For additional help manufacturing scenes of outrage, Russian provocateurs in Simferopol organized a nice mise-en-scene for Putin’s propaganda machine. A bus filled with people dressed like paramiliatry fighters, toting machine guns and grenade launchers, were filmed by Russian journliasts. It appeared instantly on the Internet and Russian TV channels, labeled as “The Right Sector from the Western Ukraine attacking peaceful Russian citizens and killing soldiers in Crimea.” But if one looks closely, it is possible to make out several important details: the bus from ‘the Western Ukraine’ in fact has a Crimean license plate number, and the fighters are armed with GM-94 grenade launchers and AK-100 machine guns, which are only used by Russian soldiers. Another question: how did Right Sector extremists manage to get to Simferopol on a big bus after all the roads to Crimea were blocked three days ago by armed police and Russian soldiers? Several jounralists tried to pass through the cordons, but in vain. Apparently only armed fighters and extremists can get permission to go to Crimea. Later, Russian consul general Vyacheslav Svetlichnyi dismissed reports of casulaties amongst Russian citizens and soldiers in Crimea as mere rumor.

Then there was the story about how a local state administration in Kharkiv hoisted a Russian flag instead of a Ukrainian one on the local parliamentary building. The rumor went viral thanks to a 25-year-old blogger in Moscow, nicknamed Mika Ronkainen. “Right now! Kharkiv administration was set free and the Russian flag was hoisted. Guess by whom?” he wrote on his social network account. Later, journalists established that Ronkainen likes to be photographed in Nazi uniforms and takes part in the Putin-supported Russian xenophobic movement “Locals”. Apparently the real story was that several buses of Russian “tourists” were taken to Kharkiv to imitate local populations showing enthusiastic support for Russia. They not only hoisted Russian flags, but reportedly beat Ukrainians who expressed indignation at Russian aggression in Crimea. 

Lines and crowds at border checkpoints are very hard to fake, so Russian TV instead filmed the line next to the border checkpoint with Poland, labeling it as “thousands of Ukrainians running away to Russia from the far right.”

Among the other potent, but false, myths of the Putin propaganda machine: that panicked Ukrainians are fleeing en masse to Russia to escape the new government in Kiev, and that the Ukrainian army is unfit for combat and soldiers are defecting to the Russian side.

As for the former, lines and crowds at border checkpoints are very hard to fake, so Russian TV instead filmed the line next to the border checkpoint with Poland, labeling it as “thousands of Ukrainains running away to Russia from the far right.” (Ukrainian journalists figured out the real location by noticing that a plate on the checkpoint listed the name of the city of Shegyni, which is on the Polish border.)

And as for the Moscow propagandist rumor that Ukrainian soldiers are clamoring to become Russian citizens, the only ones who seem eager to join Russia’s side are the Berkut riot policement, the ones allegedly involved in the mass murder of protesters in Kiev. Russian citizenship for them is the only hope for salvation from criminal prosecution and prison. Meanwhile, even as the Russian media is reporting that “Ukrainian soldiers went over to the Crimean authorities’ side peacefully and without any shots fired…the majority of them will swear allegiance to local authorities,” in the Ukrainian media, one in fact discovers that several Crimean regiments were approached by the Russian army and that they refused to lay down arms. 

No one in Ukraine or in the West doubts that the Russian invasion was provoked by anything other than Putin’s desire to reestablish the USSR 2.0. But every invader wants to look like a liberator, and in order to do so, Putin needs his scary extremists, his scared Ukrainians and his Crimean soldiers welcoming him with open arms. Meanwhile, the question now is: what will Putin do with his army in Ukraine? We can only hope the Russians shoot down their own myths and delusions, and not the local population.

 Putin's Propaganda Exposed

By Jim Hoft

In the propaganda war raging over Ukraine’s revolution, Putin played up claims of neo-Nazi involvement in the protests.

“We’ve seen lots of people, you know, with those signs — armbands with swastikas.”

The pro-Russian Global Research Center accused the opposition of including neo-Nazi thugs. They even included a photo with their report (above).

Unfortunately, they forgot to scrub the neo-Nazi with the “I am Russian” hoodie.

Via East of Brussels:

More from Hoft and East of Brussels...

PUTIN WAR PROPAGANDA EXPOSED: Same Pro-Russian 'Actress' Used in FIVE Different Ukrainian Reports


Putin’s War propaganda exposed.

A pro-Russian actress was included in five different Ukrainian reports.

She even wore the same hat in two of the reports! 

The “actress” has played roles in news clips in Kiev, Kharkiv, Odessa.  She has played as a soldier’s mother and an anti-Maiden (pro-Russian) activist.

In another propaganda piece - Russian news claimed a violent protest occurred in Crimea when the photo was taken days before in Kiev.

@rfcnf Щас нарисуют типа этого )

— Andrew Niukin (@niukin) March 3, 2014

UPDATE: The Daily Mail has more on the pro-Russian actress.

Russia's State Department is engaging in round-the-clock propaganda...

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