Tag "useful idiots"

Russia’s New ‘Useful Idiots’?

There are echoes of Soviet times in the way Russia has been courting far-right activists in the West. A new book looks at how and why it does it. By Bradley Jardine, for Codastory Remember Richard Spencer, the U.S. white supremacist whose “alt-right” followers celebrated Donald Trump’s presidential election victory with a show of Nazi salutes? Back in 2011, Spencer was appearing in another guise, as an expert on Libya, on Russia’s

Why Europe Is Right to Fear Putin’s Useful Idiots

The Kremlin’s support for right-wing parties is no game. It’s trying to subvert the European idea, Alina Polyakova wrote for Foreign Policy. Scholar Scott Radnitz recently authored an article with a provocative title: “Europe’s Extremists Are Not Putin’s Fault.” In this well-thought-out piece, Radnitz argues that the “elite rhetoric focused on Russia’s alleged efforts to infiltrate western politics” by supporting Europe’s far-right parties verges on hysteria. Vladimir Putin is not a

The Useful Idiots Show

During the 1950s, there was a term that was sometimes used to describe people who were exploited by Soviet communists to publicly support their ideology. The term was “useful idiots.” The phrase, like communism itself, has largely disappeared from use, but there are still plenty of useful idiots around. If you don’t believe it, just spend some time watching RT. The Russian government-supported propaganda network formerly known as “Russia Today”

Andrew Wilson: Russia’s “Nudge” Propaganda

Ever since the beginning of the crisis between Russia and Ukraine in 2013 there has been much discussion about the power of Russian propaganda in the West, and particularly within the EU. Russia has been able to attract a wide range of sympathisers across the political spectrum. But the way in which Russia exploits these other voices is different from how it operates at home. For more than a decade

Life In The Fog

Compared to Soviet propaganda, which targeted ideological supporters of socialism and communism, Putin’s propaganda machine targets individuals who hold different – often conflicting – worldviews. Scanning sources for a new documentary film about Russian propaganda, I stumbled upon a site called Information agency . Published in Latvian, the site promised to deliver news, analysis, and translated articles. Neither the agency’s address nor names of its authors were listed the site. Many

Is Jeremy Corbyn Putin’s latest ‘useful idiot’ in Europe?

As Jeremy Corbyn’s lead over his rivals continues to grow in the Labour leadership contest, views he’s expressed once of interest chiefly to the party’s veteran socialist fringe are being exposed to increased scrutiny. In an article for the Stop War Coalition coalition in March 2014 Corbyn opposes providing Ukraine with military support in the wake of the Maidan revolution, and echoes Russian claims that it was Nato scheming that

We’re all Putin’s ‘useful idiots’

Watching Russian TV recently is a disturbing business. As Stephen Ennis at BBC Monitoring has painstakingly recorded, Russian media has developed a habit of delivering death threats to opposition members, using anti-Semitic insinuations against its opponents, screaming about the threat of the “homosexual sodomite tsunami,” and recommending burning the hearts of homosexuals while indulging in “techniques of psychological conditioning designed to excite extreme emotions of aggression and hatred in the viewer.” It

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