A Lie May Take Care of the Present but it has no Future
7 August 2021
The Russian state looks very concerned from time to time, because of the colonial legacy that cannot be rid or escaped. This fact is revealed in terms of relations with victims of many peoples and nations, due to invasions, subjugation and brutal military operations of the successive Russian regimes, with all associated consequences and repercussions. Not to mention the contemporary hybrid wars tactics, which are followed and utilized in selected areas.
- Unfortunately, the official Russian policy is based on procrastination and repeated attempts aimed at denying the crimes committed and thus overlooking the repercussions of the Russian-Circassian war of extermination and displacement for an example, which led to eternal exile.
- In this concept, “Many governments use disinformation and propaganda to further their policy goals at home and abroad. The leading Joint Declaration on Freedom of Expression and ‘Fake News,’ Disinformation and Propaganda, which offers an international human rights perspective on fake news, stipulates that “state actors should not make, sponsor, encourage or further disseminate statements which they know or reasonably should know to be false (disinformation) or which demonstrate a reckless disregard for verifiable.”
- Apparently, observers are familiar, interested and at the same time concerned to know and verify the extent of the impact of the Russian state’s policy on changing the facts. Those who intend to use justified logic, means and references to publish and disseminate independent and impartial information that respect human rights values, will face intimidation and official blacklisting.
- In light of the numerous attempts that have never subsided, and in different frameworks and selected tools to influence the Circassian public opinion, lies, misleading rumors, distortion, interpretation and lengthening spread forgery are spread through the use of different media, including social media and modern communications, which can be easily verified.
- Undoubtedly, “fake news about the past is a crime against history…Although an old phenomenon, fake news in its recent guises also has some strikingly new features because it spreads on the internet nowadays, mainly via social media platforms,” in addition to the official media mouthpieces and outlets. Obviously, when the state is in crisis as a result of the emergence of real and confirmed information from reliable sources, which left a heavy legacy related to the crimes committed by previous regimes against peoples and nations.
Presidential Commission of May 2009
- A written question has been asked and registered in the European Parliament in regard to the Russian current policies, which does what it can to falsify historical events, related to colonial past and adventures that occurred in the old days, and were documented as they are by various parties. Even they were documented in Russian archives; notwithstanding, contemporary policies falsify and adapt these events according to their preferences. Even though ‘one lie is enough to question all truths’.
- “On 15 May, 2009 President Dmitry Medvedev issued Decree No 549 establishing ‘Commission to counter attempts to falsify history to the detriment of Russia’s interests’. President Medvedev stresses that this commission will fight malicious and aggressive attempts to deny the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany, including combating the so-called rebirth of Nazism in the Baltic states. This objective has been repeated on multiple occasions by various Russian politicians, including Konstantin Zatulin, first deputy chair of the committee of the State Duma for CIS affairs and relations with Russians abroad, member of the newly-formed commission, and, currently, the main author of this legislation.”
- The importance given to this commission that is reconstituted every now and then, and the topics, which are included on its agenda, assert the lack of interest of the Russian authorities in the importance of justice, equality, integrity, credibility, adherence to international justice, and consequently to Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which defines obligations that States and entities are bound to respect.
- “The list of the 28 members of the new commission clearly demonstrates its fundamentally political, not history-based, character. It is headed by the Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office and includes — among others — the Russian military’s Chief of Staff and representatives of the Federal Security Service, the Foreign Intelligence Service, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Public Chamber.”
- Twisted official narrative is elastic, changeable and circumstantial, to remove the blame from the offender, and make the victim accountable for the abuse. “The Russian State not only creates and enforces the legal framework for the discussion and preservation of history. It also actively imposes its own … State propaganda manifests itself through State, quasi-State, or State-affiliated institutions specifically designed to further the State’s historical narrative; the inculcation of official history at schools; and smear campaigns against independent historians and NGOs, led by Government-controlled media.”
- However, intellectuals, historians and human rights activists, and those who have a good conscience do not approve such an abomination. “During a recent International Memorial event, retired judge of Russia’s Constitutional Court Tamara Morschshakova stated that independent ‘historians always feel the danger if they don’t carry out their research according to the State-sanctioned wisdom’.228”
Engineering A Falsified History
- Russian official moves over the years are considered merely anecdotal and laughingstock, as they are inviting these immoral and illogical actions. The criticisms of observers and human rights activists still mention and witness the repercussions of the past events of occupation, extermination, annexation and displacement of many cases, which are still present and existing to the present day. “Russia, the saying goes, is a country with an unpredictable past. In fact, it is harder to predict our past than it is to foresee the future. It is a fun-house mirror that it would seem impossible to twist further. Could it be that the new commission will be in charge of straightening out twisted reflections?”
- This illogical mechanism of insisting on dictating unrealistic cartoons and comics, carried out by the tools of power and its services, does not mean in anyway but fanaticism, extremism and narcissism that mimics megalomania. “Like any similar enterprise, this one also has a false bottom. What history are we talking about? Are we discussing the entire millennia? Will we be protecting Vladimir Monomakh or Ivan the Terrible from falsification? How about Rasputin or the chemist Yevgeny Biron?”
- In related context, on the 29th of May, 2009, the President of Lithuania said at the 22nd European Meeting of Cultural Journals: “Once again, history was turned into the handmaiden of politics and ideology, thrust upon Lithuania and its people to cover up injustice and crime, to distort facts and to slander independence and freedom fighters. Today, after more than six decades, it is evident that victory without the foundations of trust and morality is no victory, while history based on falsification is no history.”
- Lies and disinformation are obstacles that those who theorize them try to impose. Racists, fanatics, fascists, extremists and hardliners from various state elements are promoting and disseminating them in various official media outlets and social media platforms. In all cases, the victims, and the civilized world behind them, neither accept nor acknowledge false, fabricated, misleading and undocumented information. “Historical memories of diverse but interconnected tragic events in the 20th century have recently again become the subject of heated political confrontation and intensive disinformation campaigns.”
- It is not reasonable to make a road map for the present and the future, or to draw up a policy for a country with the size of an entity that claims to be a superpower, based on lies and the brains of falsifiers, as if they are playing the role of gullible and clowns in a loosing game that got no guaranteed results in the long and even medium terms. What may be accepted by some people under duress at one time, cannot continue as such, or be accepted when the topics and issues are discussed at a serious or professional level away from reckless and useless maneuvers. For sure, the world neither accepts nor recognizes any fabricated and/or undocumented information.
- “The Kremlin is widely known for its cynical, insolent and thus impactful ability to manufacture groundless accusations and shameless labelling based on highly questionable, mostly falsified or even just fabricated historical narratives … Memory wars cannot be won by economic sanctions or military deterrence. The only effective solution is to invest in intellectual power and skillful diplomacy. On the battleground of historical memories, there is no place for sporadic, amateurish responses by impatient politicians or incompetent experts.”
Presidential Commission of July 2021
- Latest development, Novayagazeta published on 31 July, 2021, that Former Russian Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky has been appointed recently, head of a new commission for historical education. Purpose is to defend official ideas about the Russian past from unnecessary doubts. Action is organized on a grand scale: it includes representatives of the presidential administration, the Security Council, the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of Defense and the FSB. They will search for foreign structures that “harm the national interests of Russia in the historical sphere,” the prevention of “falsification of history”, the development of a unified state approach to historical education and “counter-propaganda activities.”
The Historical Propaganda
- A study was conducted in the title of: “Falsification of History as a Tool of Influence,” and was published on the 27th of January, 2021, to address the trend of Russia’s use of historical propaganda to further its foreign policy goals. It dealt with “the growing trend of Russia’s use of historical propaganda to further its foreign policy goals. It contains chapters written by experts in the field in the respective countries of Estonia, Finland, Latvia and Poland.”
- “It was agreed that, for the integrity of the compendium, at least the central theme should be commonly understood as ‘Jowett and O’Donnell’ conceptualise it: propaganda is a deliberate and systematic attempt to shape perceptions, manipulate cognitions, and direct behaviour to achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist.” Not to mention the contemporary hybrid wars tactics, which are followed and utilized in selected areas. In addition to creating an impact of associated, subsequent and related propaganda and disinformation campaigns.
- “In March 2021, a group of Russian senators and other top Government officials held a round-table discussion at the Federation Council, the upper house of Russia’s parliament. It’s participants said that Russian history must become a key weapon in a ‘mental war’, or ‘memory war’, against the West. They called for enhanced ‘censorship, [State] ideology, and propaganda’.253 Vladimir Medinsky proposed the adoption of the official State History Policy.254”
The number of Circassians in their whereabouts in the Circassian world, who became able through access to documented information and became certain of the facts related to their past, present and the repressive Russian measures against them and their ancestors have increased. They are inspired to do all they can and everything that would motivate them about their tireless work in order to realize the present and explore future prospects.