Skip to comments.MH17 and its aftermath: 'ordinary Russians are horrified and frightened'
Posted on 07/20/2014 11:14:19 PM PDT by wetphoenix
In Moscow, conspiracy theories abound, along with disdain for the separatists and some support for Putin 'So will the Americans attack us now?" At my dentist's surgery in Moscow I am used to being the one nervously asking questions. Yet on the day after flight MH17 was brought down, everyone here including my dentist, the receptionist and the guy fixing the receptionist's computer wants me to tell them what will happen next. "You're a journalist. You probably know something we don't know," says the receptionist. "And I don't trust the television," says the receptionist.
In the aftermath of the horrific crash that took the lives of nearly 300 people, from here it looks as if it's turned a local conflict into a tragedy of global proportions. As the popular political observer Konstantin von Eggert noted in the Kommersant daily newspaper: "It won't be [the rebels] paying the price, it will be the Kremlin. Because it is Moscow, in spite of many denials issued by representatives, that is believed by the entire world to be [the rebels'] chief sponsor and protector."
Ordinary Muscovites, meanwhile, are expressing horror at the tragedy even as they entertain some of the wildest conspiracies imaginable. My dentist, Dmitry, has served in the military, and professes scorn for the rebels, whom he refers to as "undisciplined morons". At the same time, he says there is "another side" to the disaster. "Who benefits from portraying Russia as the monster? The Americans do," he says. "They want to go to war with the whole world."
At my local home improvement store, the young manager Vitaly launches into a tirade about how "there is an information war on" and that the US has every capability to frame "either Russia or the rebels." But he, too, has tremendous disdain
(Excerpt) Read more at theguardian.com ...
The Ukraine mess is about organized crime, mafia families, and corrupt usage of politics to further a gangster agenda. If the EU trade deal back in November/December had involved them...this would have gone through, and no civil war. The gangster groups of Russia and Ukraine saw some transparency deal coming in....wiping out their current agenda and pay-offs.
Today? There’s no business deals and the only cash is what they siphon off from Moscow’s natural gas and oil profits.
Who could possibly dislike such wonderful people as the Russians?
I mean, besides everybody.
Gee I wonder how the Putinistas deal with this
Lots of interesting comments in the article.
I believe the Guardian and it’s audience was always pro-Russia during the cold War.
“Catastroika has not only been a disaster for Russia”
A decade on, enthusiasm for the Soviet collapse looks misplaced
The TV feels the same way about her. It doesn't like the way she just sits there and stares.
Yeh — they are all horrified and frightened that the West will find out that Russia has not changed and never will.
Good. I haven't trusted the television here in the US since I began paying taxes.
This is The Guardian. The question is who would believe The Guardian?
They did tell us via Snowden we were being spied on by the NSA. Apparently that was true. They are a very left wing news source.
Twenty-three years since the fall of the USSR and the birth of more-or-less independent access to news sources, and the Russians still believe everything happens due to conspiracies. And America is still `glavnii vrag’ (the main enemy).
In high school we were taught that Russian culture missed out on the Renaissance & the Enlightenment & there is still something medieval about it.
Russians may be Caucasians, but they’re not Europeans.
Give them Obamacare? Sic the IRS on them? Supply the Russian Mafia with guns? Award bonuses to their bureaucrats for murdering their veterans? Give shoulder-fired ground to air missiles to their Islamic terrorist groups? Prosecute their news reporters and threaten them with jail? Send them hundreds of thousands of illiterate refugees from the third world?
Sure about that?
Yet compared to the American old news media, they would be moderate.
The Guardian by European standards is deemed “liberal”. American, moderate.
Even both the Washington Post and NYT is even worse.
> “Who benefits from portraying Russia as the monster? The Americans do,” he says. “They want to go to war with the whole world.”
IOW, another agitprop piece from The Guardian. Who benefits from carrying water for the terrorist mastermind and mass-murderer Vlad Putin? Vlad Putin and Russia.
The Guardian is well known for being of the left.
“In 1995, KGB defector Oleg Gordievsky identified prominent Guardian editor Richard Gott as one of his agents. While Gott denied that he received cash, he confessed taking benefits from the KGB on a visit to the Soviet Union.
Gordievsky commented on the newspaper: “The KGB loved The Guardian. It was deemed highly susceptible to penetration”.”
I am not surprised.
I think Russians are admirable people.
Not funny at all. American politics is chock a block with demented fake conservatives itching for a conflict with Russia.
No it isn’t, America politics has the same old, same old, the weak Obama, Jimmy Carter types who feel that weakness in the face of aggression is the path to peace, and the Reagan conservatives who believe that peace is created through being firm and strong when dealing with aggression.
Many of us believe that the election of Reagan and his military build up saved us from a mid 1980s Russian start of WWIII, that Carter’s weakness had set into motion and planning.
While Reagan defeated the Soviet Empire, Obama’s weakness is allowing a reemergence of the Cold War as Russia and China and Islam, and various evils, take advantage of the West’s current lack of Reagan like leadership.
You just described Russia pretty well
ALL of their TV networks are tightly controlled, and their newspapers know better than challenge Putin directly
What about internet access inside Russia? Real question.
I haven’t looked that question up before. Good question.
Here are some articles that comes up with a quick search:
(These are all 2014 articles I think)
Russian government has started censoring the internet
Russia’s attack on internet freedom
Russia: Internet censorship on a “whim”
Russia declares war on bloggers
Thousands of websites are already banned in Russia.
April 25, 2014
Russia’s attack on internet freedom
Its been a bad week for the internet in Russia. On Monday, the founder and CEO of VKontakte Russian Facebook claimed to have been pushed out and that Putin loyalists are now in charge of the site. On Tuesday, the Duma adopted controversial amendments to an information law, targeting bloggers. On top of that, on the same day, opposition figure Aleksei Navalny was found guilty of slander over a Twitter post.
So, Moscow is at war with the internet & is singling out bloggers for the old KGB treatment. The ChiComs have been doing this for years. But does this mean ordinary Russians cannot access international news online?
BTW I grew up with shortwave radio & still listen to my trusty Zenith Trans-Oceanic. During the Cold War the communist bloc used to operate jamming stations & Cuba still does.
Can’t people in Russia listen to shortwave broadcasts? How about satellite?
Russians can probably still access a wide range of foreign media sources, but how many speak and read a different language?
Interesting question - in Soviet times the most popular foreign languages were English and German. Ironically, Russian itself was a unifying factor among the diverse ethnicities in the former USSR.
I was deployed to Uzbekistan where it was much easier to learn some Russian rather than Uzbek, and everyone there understood Russian.
That said, there used to be Russian-language news service from the major shortwave broadcasters - BBC, Deutsche Welle, VOA, CBC, plus Radio Free Europe & Radio Liberty.
Wonder what happened to all those? Are today’s Russians really trapped in a news vacuum, with only state media to feed their fears?
That is another great question.
Voice of America is just another leftist PBS these days, I bet the same is true for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty which has almost 500 staff and almost an $84 million budget.
as for the BBC Russian Service: On 26 March 2011 the service stopped broadcasting on medium and shortwave, and now publishes and broadcasts on the internet only
And here’s your answer - I should have googled RFE/RL first because it’s still going strong and beaming news into Russia (Radio Svoboda) and/or other nations with repressive regimes (Uzbekistan & others won’t allow local rebroadcasts).
In other words, the truth is out there & available for Russians who seek it.
Of course, free media & internet is all over the Arab world, yet Muslims believe the wildest conspiracies & fantastical rumors concerning those evil JOOOOZ.
There is such a thing as invincible ignorance.
~What about internet access inside Russia? Real question~
Much better than anywhere else I’ve been.
Unlimited broadband connection at 100 mbs under $5 a week is available in most population centers. In larger towns and cities there are 4G networks offering unlimited services under $40 a month. Not to mention there is a free Wi-Fi in parks, libraries and public transit.