Right Word | Russia-Ukraine war: Why Indians should be wary of propaganda wars


We want to construct our personal narrative, an Indian narrative, no longer handiest in this battle however on all primary international occasions and problems

Fact is the primary casualty of battle. And the Russia-Ukraine war isn’t any exception. In conjunction with the army fight between Russia and Ukraine at the flooring, a propaganda battle may be on. The adversaries on this propaganda battle are western media retailers and the Russian media. Social media may be a large phase of this propaganda battle. So prior to one bureaucracy any opinion about who’s incorrect and who is true, one will have to keep in mind that it could no longer be as ‘black and white’ as it’s made to look via each side via an intense knowledge conflict.

On this fight of narratives, on one facet there’s collective would possibly of the Western media retailers comparable to BBC, CNN, MSNBC, The Father or mother, The Washington Publish, Politico, The New York Occasions, Monetary Occasions and so forth. There are lots of extra along with those distinguished names that affect public opinion globally. The Western block’s best propaganda gear include principally information companies whose feed from the battle zone is utilized by media retailers in leisure of the arena particularly India. Now-a-days this feed briefly reaches social media additionally. Some of the distinguished names among those information companies owned and operated via the Western gamers are Reuters, AP, AFP, DPA, Bloomberg, and so forth. Russia however is the use of slick TV Channel ‘Russia Today (RT)’ and state-owned information company ‘Sputnik’ to hawk its narrative.

Western Media and anti-Russia narrative

A lot prior to this battle had begun, the Western media, powered particularly via the ones reporters who’ve spent a while in Moscow on their respectable assignments, had began portray a grim image of Russia and particularly its President Vladimir Putin. A have a look at two just lately revealed titles via award-winning reporters from the West point out how the ideas battle is being fought. The titles touted as bestsellers via many main commentators and publications are From Russia with Blood: Putin’s ruthless killing marketing campaign and secret battle at the west via Heidi Blake and Putin’s Other people: How the KGB took again Russia after which took at the west via Catherine Belton. There are dozens of such books written, revealed and lauded via the Western reporters and intellectuals organising them as same old reference issues referring to Russia and its President Vladimir Putin. Maximum of the distinguished suppose tanks in Europe and US lend a hand in selling this anti-Russian narrative.

A newsstand in Chicago, USA. Symbol courtesy Daniel X O’Neil/Wikimedia Commons

Vikram Sood, former Leader of India’s exterior intelligence company Analysis and Research Wing has known 3 primary establishments — Council for Overseas Members of the family (CFR), Trilateral Fee (TC) and the Bilderberg crew so far as construction or influencing international narratives on quite a lot of problems is anxious. “Both the CFR and TC operated from the US, while Europe has been controlled by Bilderberg group…All three overlap in their membership and the American members of both the CFR and TC are often members of the government, holding senior political, administrative and military positions.” (The Final Purpose via Vikram Sood; 2020, Harper Collins; Pp35)

Thus, with a robust and robust ecosystem comprising media retailers, reporters and suppose tanks, america, Europe and the NATO have created a specific narrative within the ongoing battle between Russia and Ukraine. Some of the important thing parts of this narrative are:

·         -Russia is an aggressor and imperialist, whilst Ukraine is a sufferer.

·         -Russian President Vladimir Putin is a monster, whilst Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is a hero.

·         -Ukraine is a united nation and each Ukrainian is combating in opposition to Russia. Whilst many Russians are opposing Putin for this battle.

·         Russia’s tempo of offensive has bogged down and it’s floundering. Its economic system is collapsing because of sanctions via the West.

This narrative hasn’t been constructed in a single day. The makes an attempt had began a lot previous. As Sood defined in The Final Purpose (Pp206), “There is a narrative being built in the US about a virtual siege against it by the Russians. There are books, articles and discussions about how they are going about this. One common theme is that America is back to the days of cold war.”

Russia’s counternarrative

Russia used to be additionally privy to this data conflict introduced via the West in opposition to it. “Russian seriousness is also judged by the fact that the Kremlin, with its $300 million budget, runs the very professional and sleek RT TV channel, which is far removed from the Soviet days of dull and boring programmes. Sputnik is a global propaganda effort with a website and radio stations that broadcast in thirty languages from different hubs in Europe including London and Paris, Latin America, Kabul and New Delhi.” (The Final Purpose; Pp206)

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Russia has been ready to construct a counter-narrative to some degree that NATO used to be encircling Russia via steady growth. And Russia used to be left and not using a different selection however to invade Ukraine to give protection to its personal nationwide safety.

Within the preliminary days of this battle, Russia used to be additionally ready to construct an international narrative of the supremacy of Russian army prowess. Extra importantly, it used to be ready to put across via knowledge conflict that Russia is not more vulnerable and it’s again to assert its position of a superpower within the international order which it had misplaced after the disintegration of Soviet Union in 1989.

However because the battle has improved, the Western media retailers were ready to construct a counter-narrative that Russian army is perplexed and no longer ready to reach its targets.

Social Media

As this battle is going on, we’ve noticed an enormous propaganda fight on social media additionally. Many West-based social media platforms have limited get entry to of the Russian status quo. Thus, Russia is suffering to counter the western narrative. As quickly because the Western media retailers put out a tale focused on Russia, the feed is going viral at the social media. Russia is discovering it tricky to check this data offensive. Many customers of social media, particularly in India, also are getting swayed via those feeds, maximum of which can be moderately crafted and being allotted in an overly well-planned means.

The Western global, it sounds as if, is making an attempt to make use of this data conflict to construct an anti-Russia opinion in India in order that the federal government should come underneath drive to enhance Ukraine and oppose Russia. Then again, Russian narrative that it has at all times stood via India whilst Ukraine antagonistic it on the most important problems within the global boards like United Countries may be being peddled. The Indian executive has, thankfully, no longer were given swayed via the propaganda wars and recently turns out to be that specialize in getting Indians caught in battle zones again to protection with the lend a hand of each Ukraine and Russia.

However the commonplace individuals are getting influenced via the propaganda from each side. Therefore, we see this kind of sharp department of opinion in Indian public discourse in relation to the Russia-Ukraine battle.

It will have to be emphasised right here that almost all of the inside track, evaluations and vox pop which are being shared via the Indian media from the battle zone are equipped via the Western information companies. The protection isn’t with out bias as discussed above. And unknowingly tens of millions of Indian readers and audience are getting influenced via this loaded protection.

Indian narrative

What we require is not to get influenced via narratives arrange via both of the perimeters. We want to construct our personal narrative, an Indian narrative, no longer handiest in this battle however on all primary international occasions and problems.

Sood aptly sums it up (The Final Purpose; Pp280), “The Indian narrative has been run far too long from elsewhere. It needs to change and cannot be determined in Europe, America or elsewhere. India and Indians must tell their own story. We need to manage our narrative to control our destiny.”

The creator, an creator and columnist, has written a number of books. Perspectives expressed are private.

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