Saturday, March 24, 2018

Brits strike back against Russian disinformation

Last year around this time, I posted a guide to how to spot "fake news" -- disinformation in the service of authoritarianism emerging from our demagogic president and his GOP enablers. It holds up pretty well.

The Brits are being subjected to a barrage of Russian-origin fake news denying Russian responsibility for the poisoning with a military grade nerve agent of a former spy and his daughter. This propaganda is not so much designed to change minds about "who done it" as to make people feel they cannot possibly know what is true. This is a signature tactic of modern dictatorships -- people get worn out amid the chaos and look away. This is not the same thing as responding to citizens' honest desire for evidence, either. It's noise to drown out understanding.

So the British Foreign Office has struck back not with refutations but with mockery. Enjoy.
And remember this tactic. We need it.

H/t Anne Applebaum.

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