By Jan Oberg
June 11, 2019
Oh yes! It can and it is ready to. And perhaps it even will. To tell you the truth, although NATO is the strongest, it could well fall apart thanks to Russia’s – Putin’s – cunning schemes.
See here is how and why – in a video from The Infographics Show – and you’ll understand it all. You fear will increase and you’ll be more to pay more to your national military.
Looked at from a professional conflict analytical perspective, one may mention a few problematic aspects of this piece of propaganda:
• There is no conflict analysis. Russia is treated as the independent variable (active), the US/NATO the dependent (re-active).
• Almost no mention of history (except that Russia was weak before but strong now). No mention, for instance, of NATO’s expansion in spite of promises given to then president Gorbachev.
• Security and peace is about military matters only.
• You focus almost only quantitative indicators, not quality – for instance the technological quality superiority of the West.
• You do mention that NATO is stronger but just in passing and not how much stronger.
• The implicit, or tacit, assumption underlying the whole “infographics” is, of course that Russia is the bad guy and the US/NATO the good guys. It’s bad offensive motives versus good defensive motives.
The title’s question is biased; a similar video would never be produced by an American/Western company – “Can the US invade Europe” – although it is that side that has made far the majority of invasions around the world.
• And you point out where NATO is weak (oh yes damn’ it, it’s so difficult to move the North American continent closer to Russia!) but not a word about where Russia may see itself as inferior.
• The other huge weakness, of course, is the “lack-lustre” commitment to the alliance – i.e. the fact that only some of them pay the famous 2% of their GDP to their common defence. The 2% measure has nothing to do with reality since a national defence and security shall not move up or down in accordance with the country’s economic situation but shall be adapted to be able to meet challenges which a serious and comprehensive, multi-dimensional analysis has outlined. Here the video does nothing but conveying intellectual garbage in the interest of the Trump administration. (Although the video then also criticizes Trump for having weakened the Alliance by his statements).
• Russia has capitalized on these fundamental weaknesses – the Russia whose military expenditures is 8% of NATO collective budget. It does not surface that NATO has decided to increase its total military budget with a larger sum than the entire Russian military budget (which is falling).
• Next, of course it was Russia that invaded Ukraine out of the blue and NATO only reacted by stationing troops in the Baltic republics. What happened before those events or the attempt to get Ukraine into both NATO and the EU (even against the majority opinion of the Ukrainian people) is conveniently omitted.
• And, as if all this was not enough, Russia is portrayed as the only one who would use nuclear weapons, that is – because Putin has said so. Omitted from this equation is that the U.S. official doctrine is the only one in the world that stipulates the possible use of nuclear weapons against even a conventional and/or cyberattack and that the US has nuclear weapons stored in a series of European NATO countries.
The conclusion is predictable. Russia might take the Baltic States in a surprise move and NATO would not be willing to protect these states as it would imply a risk that such an exchange would escalate to the nuclear level. So, Putin would win – and his ultimate goal was always to weaken the West and finally win territory. NATO would, in such an event, disintegrate.
Up until today 3,2 million people have seen this Infographics propaganda piece, seemingly put together to (mis)lead viewers to understand how evil Russia is and how weak but good the US/NATO is.
Is it deliberate fake and omission? Or just incompetence?
We don’t know, but the result is the same: Conveying a particular worldview that legitimates everything “we” do and create a crystal clear enemy image of “them”.
Interestingly, it has not quite succeeded in its mission: 33.000 have given it thumbs up, while 16.000 put thumbs down.
It’s perhaps just too simplistic, too propagandist, too easy to pull apart? Oh no, it’s the Russians, stupid! Those thumbs are of course orchestrated by Russian troll factories that have mobilised all those 16,000 (min 1, namely me).
Now, I thought it would be interesting to know how this video was produced and financed. So I wrote to the InfoGraphics company*) in New York (372 Fifth Avenue, Studio 2-K, New York City 10018, New York: +1 212 629-6291, London: +44 20 8133 4200 – firstname.lastname@example.org)
Could you be so kind to tell me who produced the video “Can Russia Invade Russia?”
What research sources did you use?
And how was the production financed and – by whom?
Many thanks, in advance
No answer. I wrote again. Still no answer. That sort of info doesn’t seem to be their strongest point…
In summary, remember to remember this: Only Russia uses propaganda and try to influence opinions. US/NATO countries use facts. Western marketing, design, and media companies always tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
We may do OK at present but our huge edge vis-a-vis the rest of the world is challenged and in the future – soon – we will be surpassed by those evil forces out to get us.
So, we in the West must mobilize all our best and most honest efforts – in terms of weapons, funds and truthful information – if we are to survive the evil forces out there. Oh yes, there is an Infographics video there is about China too…
*) The company’s CEO is Tommy McCall and you can read more about him here and here.
american will inflated european nations to hate Russia, while russian people are for sure better than american and european people both…….
If you provoke, provoke, provoke, threat, threat, threat, war propaganda, war propaganda, steal, exploit , robber, and whatever crime you commit, before or after you will pay consequences. Americans are in that way. In that situation americans are very close to their implosion, by bankrupcy, by civil internal war, by collapse of every part of his government, their assets, their agencies.Do yuou remember when federal dipendents don’t take their money for some days? in spite of that, if money start to finish because pentagon take all available resources, what do you think if average people start to need some to eat? they are close to their end.
All american international politic is to go in other countries and steal tehir resources “by gambit” because they start to having many things finishing so they try to solve their immense problems on the heads of other people of other countries………
When the whole world understand that they will unite and crush (finally) american tyrant regime.
all of that is well deserved
Can Russia invade Europe? Yes, of course it can, and perhaps it should (personally, I would not mind seeing them do away with NATO once and for all) . But, seriously, why should the Russia invade Europe (of which, by the way, it is am integral, and very large part, so I am kinda questioning the concept of self-invasion): it would inherit 650 million bitter, alienated and resentful subjects, the entire continent in ruins, apocalyptic destruction of unimaginable proportions, population (own and European) it can’t feed, oceans of desperate refugees, massive pandemics of diseases both curable and incurable, guerrilla warfare that would make Afghanistan look like a vacation in Disneyland, intercontinental pollution (both chemical and physical) dwarfing Chernobyl by a very significant margin, total war with United States, 4,000-mile long supply lines, loss of the single biggest trading partner, global ostracism, Papal and non-papal anathemas, horrendous misery, suffering and deprivation at home, social unrest resulting in yet another bloody revolution and yet another civil war and almost certain defeat, occupation and quite possibly ultimate dismemberment. Even in a purely hypothetical scenario that it emerges victorious from one such misadventure, the rewards from such grotesquely misbegotten war of aggression would be zero to subzero. Russians may be impulsive and emotional, but they certainly aren’t suicidal. Not even the darkest and most opaque of Dostoevsky’s characters would advocate gratuitously attacking an alliance of some 29 nations for pure fun and pleasure. In that sense, western anti-Russian paranoia is a purely indigenous, domestic and self-perpetuating phenomenon. There is absolutely NOTHING that Russians can do to either mitigate it or inflame it further: it has a life of its own but – sadly – no brain of its own.
Thank you, Bob!, also for writing it here.
“Can” Russia invade, not “will it” ?Why on earth would Russia, already large, want more problems from foreign takeovers? The USA always pretends its “adversaries” (which Russia has NOT chosen to be) behave in the violent, domineering way the USA does, while Russia, which has suffered several terrible invasions and fought them off (including the Nazis in WW2!!!) actually knows self-defense and has a defensive, not aggressive policy. The USA blames others (see now the behavior towards Cuba, which it has done it best to ruin since 1960 while blaming the Cubans);Iran, Venezuela, Palestine….not allowed to follow their own desires or plans or governments.
If one checks the Wikipedia article for the Zapad 2017 exercise one sees that the instigating premise of the featured “Infographics” video is false. Yes, Western military analysts and officials PRIOR to the exercise believed it would involve 100,000 troops. It turned out the final estimate landed at 12,000.