Julia Davis, M.S. is an Investigative Journalist, a featured expert with the Atlantic Council’s Disinformation Portal. Julia created and operates the Russian Media Monitor, analyzing Russian state media in a broader context of the Kremlin’s propaganda tactics, with focus on the Kremlin’s hybrid warfare and foreign policy. Julia's reports have been featured by the Washington Post, the Daily Beast, Rolling Stone, Newsweek, CNN, MSNBC and other media outlets.
Russia’s aggressive propaganda machine keeps churning out falsehoods, provocations and outright lies about the situation in Ukraine. In spite of being repeatedly exposed, it shows no signs of slowing down. Disinformation is being laid on thick and poured out in a variety of forums: streaming down from the Kremlin, to Russia’s mainstream media, on to bloggers, down to useful idiots and hordes of paid trolls, who plague comment sections of articles about Ukraine and spread vitriol, hatred and blatant lies all over the social media.
In the recent years, the West has been largely oblivious to Russia’s propaganda machine, which managed to use its reach to create a league of clueless Putinistas the world over. The Ukrainian popular revolution shone the spotlight on the outright fabrications and despicable lies by Kremlin-controlled media, which strives to create an alternate reality for its audiences. This includes not only Russian mainstream media, but also hordes of paid trolls, who plague comment sections of articles about Ukraine and spread vitriol, hatred and blatant lies all over the social media.
In the recent past, Putin’s Russia was moving up in the world’s opinion by leaps and bounds. The West was willing to overlook its dreadful human rights and press freedom record, since the country seemed to be moving in the right direction. Putin’s participation in brokering a nonmilitary solution for Syria earned him the status of a perceived peacemaker. Successful Olympic games, a Nobel Peace Prize nomination, being declared the world’s most powerful person – Putin was riding high.
Then came the popular revolution in Ukraine and Putin’s mask fell off with a thud.