Voices from Russia

Sunday, 6 March 2011

A Multimedia Presentation. America Has Lost Face

Filed under: internet,politics,Russian,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

At a hearing in the US Congress, Hillary Clinton said that the USA is losing the information war against Russia, China, and the Arab countries…

She called for an increase in the budget of the agencies involved in order to expand foreign broadcasting. During the Cold War, the attention paid to American propaganda, according to Ms Clinton, was “excellent”. However, after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Washington grew lazy, and it’s now paying the price. Secretary Clinton believed that private media is unable to fill the existing gap. As a result, the image of Americans in the minds of people in other countries doesn’t reflect the reality of life in the USA. For example, Afghans think that Americans are only interested in pumping up their muscles and that their women walk around in bikinis… it’s what they see on the TV and what they see in Kabul. Ms Clinton claimed that the USA is engaged in informational warfare, and that it’s losing. She named the winners as the Arab television station al Jazeera, the Chinese global TV network, and the Russian English-language TV channel Russia Today.


Fr Vsevolod Chaplin on al Jazeera


However, according to analysts, Secretary Clinton is overstating the matter insofar as the losing the information war is concerned. Her main objective is clear… to pry additional funds from the Congress. Certainly, of course, there are problems in the American propaganda machine. In an interview with VOR, Sergei Mikheyev, the Vice President of the Centre for Political Technologies, said, “This is evident in the recent developments in the Arab countries. All of these revolutionary movements are actually anti-Western in character. The Americans tried to paint it all as a movement for democracy… they didn’t succeed in that. It’s a movement against authoritarian leaders… but not for American-style democracy. On the other hand, to say that America is supposedly behind in the information war is a gross exaggeration”.

Mikhail Vinogradov, the President of the Петербургская политика (Petersburg Politics) Foundation, noted, “At the same time one should note that Washington’s rivals, particularly the Russian media, have scored successes on the information front. The effectiveness of Russian media efforts has increased… at least when it comes to the Russia Today TV channel. This has come at the expense of a certain de-politicisation of information. When RT focuses on non-political content, its position is perceived as more sincere and reliable… and that leads to certain success”.


RT reports on GOP attempt to rape the state of Wisconsin in favour of the rich…


Anyway, the informational war is continuing. Of course, it’s far too early to discern the victor. Margarita Simonyan, and editor at RT, observed, “However, it’s clear that the time of the absolute hegemony of US outlets is gone. We’ll continue to grow. We’re actively developing projects such as Free Video, free video agencies for TV channels in other languages. There are already more than 4,000 subscribers, which increases our audience. This means that, at last, Russia has an opportunity to distribute its videos, commentary, and positions on other channels. Previously, English-language outlets had an absolute monopoly in this market. We tore down this wall. We’ll do this and more, and we hope that Hillary Clinton will be able, in good conscience, to say that they didn’t lose the informational war, but that we’re all players”.


New Year’s Presentation from CCTV (China Central Television)


VOR is moving to expand in the same direction; it’s the world’s oldest international broadcaster. It started its history in 1929, the BBC Empire Service only began in December 1932, and Voice of America only started in 1942. Today, VOR broadcasts to 160 countries in 38 languages. They continue to use the most up-to-date methods to bring information to its audience. They not only use short and medium-wave radio, FM-band, satellite channels, and mobile communications; increasingly, VOR uses the Internet, as its programmes can be heard on its official website, and its news and analysis can be read on social networking sites such as Facebook and Vkontake.

By the way, Hillary Clinton also insisted that the American media expand its presence in the global network. It’s understandable, recent information shows that TV and radio audiences continue to fall, as people prefer to access information on the Internet. Perhaps, she places too much emphasis on the word “war?” We’re not looking for winners or losers in this field; we want to establish some sort of parity. Then, people will be able to compare different points of view… to make their own conclusions, not imposed on them by anyone else.

3 March 2011

Artyom Ananian

Voice of Russia World Service



Here’s RT’s report on Hilary Clinton’s remarks…


Editor’s Note:

VOR/Radio Moscow has always been one of the leaders and innovators in international informational dissemination. The USSR pioneered the use of HRS 8/8/1 antennas for highly targeted shortwave broadcasting long before HRS 12/6/1 technology became available in the west. HRS 8/8/1 curtain arrays create a 10-degree beam of shortwave energy, and provide a highly audible signal to a target area some 7,000 kilometres away. Today, VOR uses the Internet for podcasts and transcripts; it remains up-to-date and current in both its technology and its reporting.

One of the most famous of the RM/VOR presenters on the English-language service was the late great Joe Adamov (Iosif Adamov) (1920-2005). He was Armenian by nationality, and his main show was Moscow Mailbag (Joe was the presenter of this show from 1957 to shortly before his death in 2005). Its tagline was, “You can’t do better than to send us that letter, and in it, to tell Joe, what you think of his show”. Joe had a folksy Midwestern American accent, which, no doubt, added to the veracity of his broadcasts. When the USSR fell in 1991, Joe stepped up to the mike and said, “I’m sorry for having lied to you in the past to follow the party line”. That was BIG, kids. I don’t believe that the USSR was the “evil empire” (that description better fits the post-1991 USA)… but I also say that the USSR fell because it didn’t correct certain fatal flaws quickly enough (that’s why the coup plotters did what they did… they feared Mikhail Sergeyevich’s reforms). Joe was right in taking the high road here… there were things wrong in the old USSR, and they weren’t put right fast enough, so, the state fell (I think, to the detriment of the world).


RT on the growing gap between rich and poor in America…


America IS losing the informational war… it’s losing because it’s the “evil empire” and people all over the world see the results of American “democracy”… it sees the destruction of the Iraqi Christian community, it sees the bombed out Serb villages in Kosovo, it sees the Afghani women killed and maimed due to the excesses of the American-sponsored Taliban Lite Karzai junta… you can’t prettify the horrid and unspeakable. Reflect on the fact that the present Republican Party is attempting to do precisely that… and rip off the common folk to enrich the oligarchs, as well.

That’s why America isn’t listened to… if we wish to be heard, we need to show that we’re not thugs and thieves. We haven’t done that yet…


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