Asia Disinformation Efforts, Exiled Activists, Information War Failures, More: Ukraine Update, May 14, 2022


CNN: US intelligence community launches review following Ukraine and Afghanistan intel failings. “The US intelligence community is carrying out a sweeping internal review of how it assesses the fighting power of foreign militaries amid mounting pressure from key lawmakers on Capitol Hill who say officials have failed twice in one year on the two major foreign policy crises faced by the Biden administration in Ukraine and Afghanistan.”


Meaww: Who was Petro Dziuba? Russia uses UKRAINIAN pilot on propaganda poster after bombing cemetery where he’s buried. “A Russian poster celebrating Victory Day on Monday, May 9, reportedly depicted a Ukrainian pilot from the Soviet era who shot down 16 German planes in World War II. The photos made the rounds on social media and sparked outrage amid claims that Russia had bombed the Kharkiv cemetery where airman Petro Dzubia was buried.”

StopFake: Russia-Ukraine War through the Prism of Mass Communications. “Ukraine’s struggle for independence from Russia has become truly global from the perspective of mass communications. This war is universally covered in the world media. It is extremely visible. It is a war that demands the expression of public judgment, thus becoming a point of political identification. The current confrontation between Russian and Ukrainian media discourses is not an ordinary clash of warring parties propaganda rhetoric. In this war, Western civilization is searching for an answer to a question of utmost importance: can it withstand within its own value framework – or is it no longer able to do so.”

Fulcrum: The Russia-Ukraine War: Unpacking Online Pro-Russia Narratives in Vietnam. “Pro-Russia narratives in Vietnam’s cyberspace are the result of cross-pollination between sentimental attachment since the Soviet era, psychological bias towards Russia embedded in Vietnam’s education and propaganda system, and the overriding imperative to preserve the Vietnamese state’s political and ideological interests.”

The Guardian: China’s pro-Russia propaganda exposed by online activists. “A number of Chinese government-linked media outlets and pro-Russia social media accounts are spreading pro-Kremlin sentiment on the Chinese internet by mistranslating or manipulating international news about the war in Ukraine.”

Waging Nonviolence: ‘Poison for the people’ — How an exiled activist is countering Russia’s propaganda machine. “Environmental activist Evgeniya Chirikova once helped save a forest in Moscow. Now she’s trying to give voice to Russian activists and journalists resisting Putin’s regime.”


BBC: Ukraine war: The stolen faces used to promote Vladimir Putin. “Indian influencer ER Yamini has never tweeted in her life – she prefers to cultivate her big fan bases on Instagram and YouTube. But in early March, a Twitter account using her picture tweeted: ‘#IStandWithPutin. True Friendship’ accompanied by a video showing two men hugging – one representing India, the other, Russia. Yamini says she doesn’t support either country in the Russia-Ukraine war, and worries about her fans.”

Bleeping Computer: Google Chrome updates failing on Android devices in Russia. “A growing number of Android Google Chrome users in Russia are reporting errors when attempting to install the latest update for the web browser. The number of complaints is increasing every day but so far, the cause of the problem remains unknown and is still unsolved.”

Bleeping Computer: Dell, Apple, Netflix face lawsuits for pulling services out of Russia. “A Moscow Arbitration Court has reportedly seized almost $11 million belonging to Dell LLC after the company failed to provide paid-for services to a local system integrator. IT systems integrator Talmer sued Dell early last month when the American computer giant declined to provide technical support services for VMware as previously agreed. Dell is the representative of VMware in Russia and was reselling these services until March 1, 2022.”


USC Center on Public Diplomacy: Why Russia Is Losing The Information War . “Given Russia’s apparent preeminence in information warfare, taking control of Ukraine seemed well within the Kremlin’s grasp. This year, as its troops massed along the Russia-Ukraine border, Russia’s information attacks were relentless, claiming that Ukraine was riddled with corruption, was run by Nazis, and was not really a nation. Once again, with this messaging as a foundation, Russia rolled into Ukraine. Despite its past successes, Russia’s information strategy did not work this time. The reason, in a word: pushback.”

Small Wars Journal: Are We Informationally Disadvantaged? The Realities of Information War in Ukraine. “Since the first mention of information advantage in the Joint Concept for Operations in the Information Environment in 2018, the Army struggled to understand what achieving information advantage really means. Much of the Army’s focus is on network degradation, systems, processes, and formations, which claim to all ensure information advantage. These discussions fail to comprehend the activities taking place in Ukraine and their implications. In essence information advantage isn’t about a unit, a computer, or even a doctrine; it’s all about the narrative. The narrative is the backbone of any information advantage, and its why Ukraine dominates Russia in the information environment currently.” This is excellent.

Brookings Institution: Putin’s internet plan: Dependency with a veneer of sovereignty. “Cut off from Western technology suppliers, Russia is moving to build an increasingly autarkic economy. Last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin created a new commission on internet and technological ‘sovereignty’ in Russia and placed Dmitry Medvedev, former president and current deputy chairman of the Security Council, as its head. According to The Moscow Times, the goal of this commission is to find substitutes for the critical IT supplies the Russian economy desperately needs. In short, Moscow is leaning into techno-isolationism more than ever before.”

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