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Piotr Pamiarantsau:"Сonspiracy all around"- the main rhetorical device of Russian propaganda (photo)

01.11.2016  |  Society
Piotr Pamiarantsau:"Сonspiracy all around"- the main rhetorical device of Russian propaganda (photo) Photo by "EuroBelarus" Information Service

British journalist came to Minsk to talk about how states use media for propaganda and to run a workshop on information verification.

Piotr Pamiarantsau is a British journalist and writer, senior researcher at the think-tank The Legatum Institute. He is regularly published in the London Review of Books, Atlantic, Foreign Policy and the Financial Times. Professional interests of Piotr Pamiarantsau are foreign policy and propaganda of the XXI century. He lived in Moscow until 2010 and worked as a director and producer of entertainment projects and documentaries on the top rated TNT channel. His experience of living in Russia became the basis for the book “Nothing is True and Everything is Possible. The Surreal Heart of the New Russia”, which was published in the UK in February 2015. He also worked as an analyst for European Union and the World Bank development projects in the Post-Soviet states.

Photo by "EuroBelarus" Information Service

As Piotr says about himself in a fairly good Russian, "my foot has never touched a Soviet land." He was born in Kiev, but his parents left (or rather they were made to leave), when the boy was 9 months old. Piotr grew up in England, his father worked in the Russian Air Force.

"EuroBelarus" Information Service attended a meeting with the British guest at the Press Club in Minsk.

"I was part of the team of people trying to spoil the great Russian culture. I helped to engrain all the horror of a decadent culture in the country of Tolstoy and Dostoevsky ", - recalls Piotr his work in Moscow.

Photo by "EuroBelarus" Information Service

During the meeting, the journalist made a small presentation on how modern regimes use propaganda to deceive people all over the world. And while Piotr Pamiarantsau was not touching upon Belarus or even Eastern Europe - the audience is well aware of it all itself, he said - but certain parallels suggested themselves.

Piotr Pamiarantsau talked about how they block the Internet in China, create "troll factories" in Russia, turn political debates into reality shows in America, what funny shows the late Hugo Chavez hosted himself in Venezuela and how really serious state propaganda in Turkey is. Then Piotr Pamiarantsau asked the audience: "And what is it like here..?" and the British guest heard all about the BRYU forum trolls, the Soviet Past nostalgia and the state torn between the East and the West.

Photo by "EuroBelarus" Information Service

"This is understandable and justified, - Piotr Pamiarantsau drew the attention to the words about the nostalgia. - You have well-preserved monuments of Soviet architecture. It does not necessarily mean it was imposed by the government. It may be a society need associated with the devastating losses during the WWII, a form of mourning for the dead people."

It is absolutely normal to be nostalgic”, - Piotr Pamiarantsau believes.

"I have been in Belarus for 24 hours sharp and have understood everything. There is such a nostalgic haze, but it implements very rational things. Belarus is a very modern country as no vision of the future can be found anywhere", - said the guest. The audience noticed that his words would make an exemplary speech of a foreign expert for the Belarusian TV.

"You have such a wise president! He was the first to realize that the future lies in the past", - joked Piotr Pamiarantsau.

Photo by "EuroBelarus" Information Service

Speaking of propaganda, it would be impossible to get around the impact of the Russian media space on our country.

Сonspiracy all around" is the main rhetorical device of Russian propaganda.  A plot inside a plot – a matryoshka doll of sorts", - highlighted the British expert.

According to Piotr Pamiarantsau, this policy is convenient for the authorities: if the whole world has drown in conspiracy, people feel like they can not do anything about it and remain passive.

How to resist the propaganda? Experts around the globe are developing numerous ways to do it.

"The first Summit of fact-checkers from around the world took place in Buenos Aires. This is a new profession involving people who check facts. There are great expectations associated with the automation of the process", - said the British journalist regarding ideas on how to combat misinformation in the West.

"But often people strive for a lie, they are looking for the evidence supporting their ideology," - stated Piotr Pamiarantsau.

Photo by "EuroBelarus" Information Service

The British journalist ended his speech with the fact that according to the historical experience, information revolutions most often lead to cataclysm. There’s no need to be an expert to acknowledge that the countries with strong civil society are the least prone to the propaganda. However...

"As long as there is no vision of the future engaging the whole country there will be no need for public space and discourse", - Piotr Pamiarantsau concluded.

Photo by "EuroBelarus" Information Service

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