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Information war: Asymmetrical instruments of „Russkiy Mir”


The analysis of Russia’s information flow reveals that the Kremlin seeks to create its own information capacity. Our attention was drawn to the qualitatively new information tools of asymmetrical nature. Their main idea is the formation of the necessary public opinion of a great social group, i.e. the population of Russia.

The Kremlin’s present information power is measured not only by a strong media platform, but also by a fundamentally newapproach towards information dominance. Simply put, the multi-billion dollar financing of the Russian media monster „All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company”(VGTRK) does not solve the issues of Russian propaganda. Apparently, for this reason the Kremlin has switched to mass social projects.

So, most importantly:

In November 4, 2015 an all-Russian action, entitled „March to support the policy of Vladimir Putin” will be held in the large Russian cities. The event is linked to the Day of National Unity, and traditionally will involve demonstrations across the whole Russia, as it has been in the soviet times.

According to analysts, this date replaced the anniversary of the October Revolution of 1917 (which was celebrated in November 7). The new celebrationwill happen not only through demonstrations and rallies, but also under the „information surveillance” of the Russian authorities. This means that the support of President Vladimir Putin as the theme of the mass events is imposed from above..

By the way, the „mass actions” on the Day of National Unity will be organized on Ukraine’s temporarily occupied territories by Russia, namely in Crimea and parts of Donetsk and Luhansk provinces. Besides that, „opposition activities” are expected on this occasion in Kyiv, Kharkov, Odessa and Zaporozhye, according to some certain information.

If we carefully consider the new information technology, it becomes clear that under the cover of the historically obvious guise of „national unity” the attempt to form an „obedient” information society inside the RF is being implemented. And therein lays theasymmetrical approach to expand the Russkiy Mir’s information space. Besides that, the celebration of the Day of National Unity can also be considered as an element of the „Kremlin’s friendly package” on purpose to secretly spread pro-Russian ideas on the Ukrainian information field.

The distinctive features of the Russian Federation’s modern social movement are those forms that defy the usual forecasting in the system of received information threats.In this regard we can talk about the creation of a zone of information asymmetry focused on the Russian leadership’s political objectives. According to experts, the asymmetric information effect is imperceptible to the victim of aggression and it is difficult to find a prepared defensive reaction against it to protect the information symmetry. Apparently, calculating with that fact, the Russian leadership has taken a number of social and political measures to implement the „nationwide project”. The key role was assigned to the National Liberation Movement (NacionalnoOsvoboditelnoye Dvizheniye – NOD), the social power of Russia coordinated from the Kremlin. No one was surprised that, when the NOD quasi initiated the „March to support the policy of Vladimir Putin”, it was immediately supported in the remote regions of Russia.

Putin appeals to you! Support the NOD! Putin talks about the 5th column in Russia.

The movement has no leader officially, however its slogans, propaganda memes and ideological vector indicates the Russian President Vladimir Putin as of a leading role.

National Liberation Front of Russia – Deputy Evgeniy Fedorov

The „national” project’s coordinator position was given to E. Fedorov, deputy of the State Duma. In narrow circles he is known as „Putin’s Joker”. By the comments of people close to the Kremlin, his mission is to accumulate the mood of protest for himself to merge it later in favor of the ruling elite. He is an excellent performer of political orders to refocus the center of public attention. On the list of his „achievements” can be listed the creation of numerous social movements, activity in the Russian presidential office and providing political stuffing. For example, during one of the session of the State Duma, Fedorov called to fight „the traitors and liars of the media” with the „the powerful fifth column of the media” in which he counted the RBK, Snob, Echo Moskvi, Newsru.com, Slon and TV channel Dozhd. Then he accused the musician Andrei Makarevich, stating that he has been cooperating with the fascists for a long time and has turned to the side of RF’s enemies.Fedorov builds the NOD on an asymmetrical basis as a commissioned project. The innovative approach to movement organization allows to evade the usual clichés and predictability of the movement’s actions.

More specifically:

First, these „unclear” duties of the NOD’s members practically lack any trivial rules:

  • procedure of organization members’ entry and residence

  • payroll registration of the movement’s members

  • organization’s official system of collection of contributions

  • frequency of organized events and meetings

Second, clearly defined goals of the organization (let us recall the „unclear” duties of its members):

  • clearly coordinated ideological vector (For Russia and against the common enemy USA and West)

  • mobilization of the public through rallies, marches, discussion of events in social networks

  • creation and permanent support of „the presence of enemies of Russia” as information background

  • support and high rating of the Russian president and formation of the population’s high level of trust to him

  • defense of the Kremlin’s interests

Third, the movement has an extensive organizational network across all regions of Russia, and also actors in the post-soviet countries (Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Belorussia, etc.) and Europe (Italy, Serbia, Montenegro, Germany and others).

National Liberation Front – Join our official groups!

The NOD has operating units in the temporarily occupied regions of Ukraine, and also in Kiev, Kharkov, Odessa and Zaporozhye.

Fourth, the development of voluntary activities for the NOD’s activists, including:

  • journalism

  • publicistics

  • editorial activities

  • organizing street activities and events

  • public performance

  • teaching activities

  • creating sites for information and communication

  • blogging

  • spin doctors and others

This means that each NOD activist must possess propagandist qualities of its own field of profession such as publications, trolling, training and informing by order.

Fifth, the NOD receives an absolute governmental assistance and support. Almost all planned activities are carried out with the knowledge and by the plans of the municipal authorities. The financing comes through Minina Fund, Relief Fund Novorossiya, and other ostensibly voluntary funds. In fact, the financing of the NOD’s events mostly come from the municipal and regional budgets.

Sixth, the National Liberation Movement has created its own information environment with the Kremlin’s ideology.

Flyers of the National Liberation Front of Russia

The NOD manufactures and issues its own flyers, including those which portray Ukraine as the „usurper of the people’s will”

The NOD has created and uses dozens of official webpages in social networks and sites, several video channels on YouTube and Rutubehostings, page on livejournal.com and other electronic resources.

Newsletter of the National Liberation Front of Russia

The NOD issues its own official newsletter „NOD: For sovereignty” issued in 100 thousand copies. The newspaper has been registered in Rostekhnadzor just in the midst of the information aggression of Russia against Ukraine – in March 2014 (certificate of registration: № ФС 77-57129). Considering the Kremlin’s censorship and strict control over the media, the registration of the new organ points out the custom-made nature of the newspaper.

Furthermore, during the same period E. Fedorov, the coordinator of NOD issued a book, entitled „National Liberalization Movement of Russia”. In the book he is trying to impose judgmentthat the USA allegedly controls Russia’s sovereignty.

So, a brief conclusion.

Under the guise of national will, the „March to support Putin” will be held in the cities of Russia on the 4th of November. As a component of the Kremlin-controlled „centralized democracy”, the National Liberation Movement will gather the people in the streets of Russia.

Russia’s NOD is a quasi-national formation with a hybrid structure. Its basis consists of the socially active part of society from all regions of Russia and pro-Russian groups or other states. But at the same time, the rules of the game of „national society” are definedand imposed from above by the Kremlin’s politics and ideology.

To control the crowd, the NOD has built up a management and information system with which the operational coordination of the events will be carried out across all Russia.

Such a structure creates a perfect illusion of national will across the whole country (for example „Putin is supported by the people themselves” or „Russian people for the bombardment of Syria”). That is the exact principle of the asymmetric information impact. The asymmetric messages of the „secretly controlled crowd” quietly penetrate the traditional symmetrical human perception. And here lies the secret of manipulation: our consciousness is designed to contain only the symmetrical effects.

P.S. It seems that a similar movement will be created in the Russian schools, based on the soviet Pioneer Movements. In October 29, 2015 Vladimir Putin has signed a decree „On creation of the all-Russian public-state organization for children and youth”. By all accounts, the school organization will be built on the principle of NOD, as for the implementation of the Kremlin’s ideology such a structure is simply irreplaceable.



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