Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia · Ukraine

Bloomberg Calls Russians “Separatists”, “Rebels”, Promotes Russian Propaganda


Here is my first example of somebody who appears to have bought into Russian propaganda, in order to start educating journalists and publications about their continued use of Russian propaganda in their articles.

Nataliya Vasilyeva wrote an article, published by Bloomberg, about a Russian leader being assassinated in Donetsk, Ukraine.

Separatist Commander Assassinated in Eastern Ukraine

Russian propaganda has promoted the use of the term “separatist” and “rebel” to make Russia’s invasion of Eastern Ukraine appear to be a civil war, but this is definitely not the case.  The terms have been used by journalists and publications unwilling to put the blame squarely on Russia for invading the sovereign space of another nation.  Here, the title, which is generally the responsibility of an editor, uses the word “separatist”, giving some propagandist in Moscow a nod in acknowledgment.

Continuing with the article:

February 8, 2017, 4:27 AM EST February 8, 2017, 5:03 AM EST

Moscow (AP) — A prominent rebel leader in eastern Ukraine has been killed in an explosion in his office, his associates said on Wednesday.

The rebels’ Donetsk News Agency said Mikhail Tolstykh, better known under his nom de guerre Givi, died early Wednesday morning in what it described as a terrorist attack. The agency said 35-year old Tolstykh was killed by a rocket fired from a portable launcher into his office.

Here Nataliya Vasilyeva uses the word “rebel” in her article multiple times. A Bloomberg editor obviously approved the use of the term in reference to Russian soldiers, Russian mercenaries, and pro-Russians aided by Russian Spetsnaz.  One must at least wonder, does Bloomberg tacitly approve the Russian invasion of Ukraine and approve the use of Russian propaganda in their publication. Or is this a matter of laziness?

The article ends with more obvious Russian word crafting:

Dmitry Peskov, spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin, described Tolstykh’s death as an attempt to “destabilize the situation” in eastern Ukraine after flare-up of hostilities last week killed more than 33 people.

Peskov denied any Russian involvement in the warlord’s death, calling it impossible.

Not only is Russian involvement in this assassination possible, it is probable.  Last year’s assassination of Motorola aka Arsen Pavlov, a close friend of Tolstykh’s, was widely said to be a result of Russian Spetsnaz soldiers.  Additionally, when the Russian President’s personal spokesman comments on the assassination of a possible “rebel”, the incident obviously had Presidential attention. At this point the evidence is merely coincidental, but, then again, everything about the Russian invasion of Ukraine has somehow appeared coincidental, even down to the propaganda being used by reporters.

The use of Russian-crafted propaganda in this article is undeniable.  The continued use of Russian propaganda in supposedly mainstream media publications indicates not only a success for Russian propaganda but for Russia itself.  Russian influence affected not only the US presidential election to an unknown degree, but influences reporting of an illegal Russian invasion of another country’s sovereign space, the illegal annexation of Crimea – stolen from Ukraine, as well as the assassination of a pro-Russian leader in Ukraine.

Russian influence affected not only the US presidential election to an unknown degree but here it is seen influencing reporting of an illegal Russian invasion of another country’s sovereign space, the illegal annexation of Crimea – stolen from Ukraine, as well as the assassination of a pro-Russian leader in Ukraine.

Witting or unwitting, it puts Bloomberg as complicit in the unethical and immoral reporting of illegal Russian activity in Ukraine.

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