Just a wonderful piece of maskirovka

Russia is trying to topple Angela Merkel by waging an information war designed to stir up anger in Germany over refugees, Nato’s most senior expert on strategic communications has claimed.

The attempt to provoke the removal of the German leader, who has been a strong supporter of sanctions against Vladimir Putin’s regime, is said to have been identified by Nato analysts.

Jānis Sārts, director of Nato’s Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence, based in Riga, Latvia, told the Observer that Russia had a track record of funding extremist forces in Europe, and that he believed there was now evidence of Russia agitating in Germany against Merkel.

Maskirovka is a Russian word meaning the sort of misleading stuff the KGB used to plant in compliant media. And this is a lovely example of it: just that it’s not being done by the Russians at all.

But it is very cute and rather clever. Because the take away message is that any German slightly upset about the idea of gangs of near feral youth touching up the local womenfolk are just being paid by Uncle Vova.

Job done.

13 thoughts on “Just a wonderful piece of maskirovka”

  1. NATO have still not heard of or grasped the concept of social media, I take it? People are well ahead of the game these days, And it is embarrassing to see just how far, when you read copy from them like this.

  2. You may be missing the point, though I’m not sure as I haven’t read the link – the big thing that Russia has been trying to stir up has been allegations that an ethnic Russian teenage girl living in Germany was kidnapped and abused by migrants. (Broadcast on Germany’s surprisingly popular and Putin-aligned Russian language media.)

    The allegation doesn’t seem to have great legs – definitely being stirred up by Russian government agencies, in a way that is less organic than eg the Cologne allegations.

  3. Bloke in Germany in Hong Kong

    There is no question Russia is stirring in Germany! If you think they don’t stir in the UK just read the comments under any Russia-related article on any British newspaper website.

    In Germany, they’ve been funding friendly groups of whackjobs since 1945. Nowadays it’s just different whackjobs, plus there are orders of magnitude more resident compatriots (and Russian-inclined persons, e.g. from the Balkans) than during the cold war (and they aren’t all being followed closely by German intelligence agencies), and it’s cheaper to stir the pot.

    It might be far-fetched to claim Putin is creating the refugee crisis to topple Merkel, but he wouldn’t be too upset to know things were going that way.

  4. So Much For Subtlety

    Sweden has been inventing stories about neo-Nazis attacking migrants too. Allegedly.

    It seems no pathetic lie is too much to make us accept our rapid extinction. Hang them all.

  5. From Professor Robert Hunter Wade

    “The US has engineered the WTO to commit itself to negotiate a global market in private healthcare, welfare, pensions, education and water, supplied – naturally- by US companies and which will undermine political support for universal access to social services in developing countries. It has engineered a “private sector development “agenda devoted to accelerating the private and non-governmental ) provision of basic services on a commercial basis.”
    Since we have had years of propaganda for this kind of American hegemony from UK hack journalists and hack politicians as useful idiots for a foreign power, it is no time to be complaining about puny Russian efforts.

  6. So Much For Subtlety

    If I could quibble. Maskirovka is the military use of deception for the purposes of misleading the enemy about what you are going to do. What TW means is Disinformation which is not quite the same thing.

    And DCB Reed, some of the biggest water companies in the world are French. Nothing in the WTO insists they have to be American.

  7. So Much For Subtlety

    dearieme – ““Nato’s Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence”: does any true centre of excellence call itself a Centre of Excellence?”

    Well NATO is dominated by Americans …..

  8. sackcloth and ashes

    ‘Because the take away message is that any German slightly upset about the idea of gangs of near feral youth touching up the local womenfolk are just being paid by Uncle Vova’.


    The takeaway message is that hundreds of thousands of Syrians have become refugees, because of Uncle Vova and his decision to back Bashar to the hilt.

    That is the story that we should be focussing on.

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