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The weaknesses of the strong country

Wars starts when wants but ends when can.
«Niccolo Machiavelli»

The modern system of international relations continues to be headed by the United States, which has a significant influence on the structural changes that determine the further direction of its transformation and form new rules for international political interaction. However, Russia constantly fights for key positions in the sphere of world leadership, as a rule, neglecting international political processes, norms of international law and, in general, its authority in the world arena.

An important aspect of US domination in the global system of international relations is the information and cultural factor, which, according to many scholars and experts, is one of the main components of success in spreading Western values, behavioral norms and intellectual perception of the world.

Unfortunately, in recent years, the US is losing leadership in the information industry, which makes it possible to dominate the global dissemination of information and ideas on the Internet, through the intensification of Russia's aggressive propaganda policy in the information sphere.

The Russian state propaganda machine, including domestic media and global media that work for foreign audiences (such as RT and Sputnik) and quasi-governmental “trolls”, always participates in influence campaigns, acting as a Kremlin platform for transmitting messages to domestic and foreign audiences. .

The Kremlin’s most audacious attempt to influence the socio-political processes in the United States is the campaign of Russian influence on the election of the American president in 2016, which demonstrated an extremely high level of aggressiveness, audacity and scale of the efforts taken.

However, the Russian special services continue to build on their experience in order to provide Russian President Putin with new instruments of aggression against the United States, taking into account past activities and current efforts.

One of the methods for identifying vulnerable aspects of sociopolitical processes in any country is the analysis of publications, the mouthpiece of Russian propaganda and the Kremlin’s sponsored Internet resource RT, as well as Sputnik, Kommersant and others, are officially recognized.

For reference: the chief editor of RT, Margarita Simonyan, maintains close relations with high-ranking Russian officials, especially with the deputy head of the presidential administration Alexei Gromov, who appears to be in charge of political television programs in Russia and was the founder of RT. In addition, Simonyan officially stated that Gromov defended her from other officials who demanded custom publications, headed censorship of political materials on television, and also periodically provided heads of state-funded media with specially prepared and edited information, exercising control over news releases.

Also, the Kremlin appoints RT workers and closely monitors the work of the TV channel, attracting people who could broadcast the position that is advantageous to Russia (the so-called “party line”) to a global audience. Simonyan herself says that the Russian government set a target rating and audience for RT, and since RT receives state funding, the TV channel must fulfill the tasks of the state.

Recently, the priority of RT is to work in social networks in order to evade mandatory regulation for the TV channel and to expand the audience of political reports, positioning itself as anti-mainstream media, provides viewers with alternative news reports and using well-trained people to follow public thoughts in the comments.

The Kremlin spends $ 190 million a year on distributing RT programs, paying great attention to satellite, terrestrial and cable television. And according to Simonyan, the USA is an extremely successful RT platform, in which more than 85 million users of the American segment of the Internet network are involved.

Therefore, now the focus of our attention is to ascertain the main “vulnerabilities” of the United States in the socio-political sphere, which the Kremlin’s propaganda machine is using or intends to use in the future through appropriate media platforms of influence.

The main goal of the Russian special services remains the implementation of an influence campaign aimed at undermining confidence in the US president and government and stimulating political protests that could lead to an escalation of violence and destabilization of the socio-political situation in the country.

Kremlin-funded RT America TV has significantly expanded the number of broadcasts devoted to criticism of American democracy and civil liberties, and also expanded its audience on social networks.

And although RT America continues to position itself as an American TV channel and deliberately tries to hide any ties with the Russian government, the rapid expansion of its activities, the increase in the channel’s budget, as well as recent direct statements by the RT leadership show that this resource plays an important role for the Kremlin the transmission of messages and the conductor of the Kremlin-directed campaign to undermine confidence in the US government and the shaking of the political situation.

In addition, the Kremlin’s rhetoric about the likely deepening of a large-scale split in American society is intensifying, emphasizing that the midterm elections in the United States did not reduce anxiety and tension in America or in international space, but only delayed global changes in the world political arena.

Attention is focused on the fact that US President Trump is pleased with the election results, because the Senate remains for the Republicans, who allegedly demonstrate cohesion around the president. In addition, the message is spreading about disputes in the lower house - the House of Representatives, where a slight advantage of the Democrats will only increase the tension. After all, the Democrats will try to block most of Trump's initiatives, especially the decision on budget financing (which the lower house makes). And undoubtedly, the Democrats are set to initiate new investigations into Trump's activities.

OSINT analysis showed that most of the malware content recently discovered on Facebook is left-oriented messages: such as the rights of women, indigenous people and resistance to Donald Trump. In addition, according to research, among the Russian trolls in the English-speaking Twitter segment of five accounts, two are the radical left-wing troll, which splits the US Democratic Party from the inside, and the right-wing troll, which aggressively supports President Donald Trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric The next large-scale campaign of Russian influence is the racial issue in the United States. A striking example of the use of American racism by the Russian Federation was demonstrated during the election campaign in 2016: Russians said to African Americans that Hillary Clinton was a racist, and American racists that Clinton loved African Americans. The consequences of this message of the information campaign are still known.

In addition, the online publication RT periodically focuses the attention of the American audience on vulnerabilities in matters of illegal migration, thereby deepening social contradictions in the country. D. Trump during the election campaign promised to conduct a more stringent migration policy and strengthen border control, because, according to the American president, illegal immigrants are “criminals” who must be shown and deported. He signed the order on the construction of a wall on the border with Mexico five days after the inauguration, but the Congress has not yet allocated the necessary funds. Also, in his opinion, the influx of labor migrants contributes to increased irritation among unemployed Americans.

The “experts” of the RT Internet resource promote the message that the main reason for Trump’s anti-immigration policies is not the fight for jobs and not the fear of crime, but the fear of the “white population” of the United States of losing the majority and being relegated to the background migrants. After all, Trump is positioning himself as a defender of "white America" who voted for him in the elections. "

RT also ignores environmental and public health problems by broadcasting anti-gas programs through hydraulic fracturing. This probably reflects the concern of the Russian government over the impact of US natural gas production on the global energy market and the potential threat to Gazprom’s profitability.

Also, since the United States is the most extensive digital infrastructure, and this is not only the public sector, but also a very sensitive private sector with its banks and exchanges, the United States is the most vulnerable country to cyber threats. And if China in 2008 at the presidential election carried out large-scale cyber attacks on the campaigns of both McCain and Obama, in order to spy, rather than publish any documents, the Kremlin went further - began to shamelessly use the letters of political influence and information flooding.

Recall that since the end of the summer of 2015, Russia conducted the most aggressive and targeted hacker operation in history, launching attacks on selected groups - politicians, officials, media people, journalists, foreign policy experts, thousands of American citizens and institutions. The scale of these attacks, even despite their official exposure, is still impossible to fully assess, and the consequences can no longer be corrected.

To a lesser extent, but problematic issues in the American medical system and education are covered on the RT channel. The attention of the American audience is focused on a sharp increase in poverty, crime rates, suicides in the US Army, sodomy, and the like.

And of course, a separate global goal of Kremlin propaganda in the United States remains its foreign policy, but this is a very large and detailed data set that should be considered separately.

Results

In order to combat Russian disinformation campaigns at the international level, in the United States, the FBI announced the creation of a special bureau called the FBI Task Force, which will collect and publicize information about Russia’s activities on the Internet, and take measures to limit the spread of fake and distorted information. information.

In addition, the Pentagon announced the development of software that allows you to monitor social networks around the world.

However, in particular, according to US Undersecretary of State Thomas Shannon, the ways to overcome this problem are much easier and no less effective: “keep the public informed about the“ Russian interference ”on the Internet, give this publicity, because in Europe, especially Germany and France, where voters knew about the Kremlin’s manipulation in social networks, the effect of such attacks was very slight. ”

Therefore, although the Kremlin’s “bots” in social media and “fakes” in the news cannot yet be distinguished by everyone, now the fighting mechanisms have become clearer and more effective, therefore, the chances of successfully countering Russian propaganda on the Internet are greater.

Unfortunately, the tactics of clogging up the Internet space with distorted and fictional information to achieve a specific political or economic goal that the Kremlin has proposed, are being picked up by other players in the information field. And here we are talking not only about external power, it carries out manipulations, but also about political players who in different countries hire foreign firms to create information chaos. Therefore, it is extremely difficult to distinguish business interest from the information campaign of the aggressor country.

It should be noted that, despite the large number of “vulnerabilities” and “weaknesses”, the United States of America remains a superpower player in the world political arena, which has not only diplomatic, but also economic and military leverage. The Kremlin's propaganda machine only helps to identify the vulnerabilities of the American control system, and to solve problems in a consolidated manner at the strategic and local levels. A blessing in disguise!

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