Politics

Three Anti-Western Messages on the U.S. Protests

17 June, 2020

Georgian pro-Kremlin actors and anti-liberal groups have been actively disseminating various messages and comparing the Georgian reality with the widespread protests, sparked by the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis (U.S.) on May 25. Oftentimes, the disseminated narratives were anti-American by their nature and were well-aligned with the official position of the Kremlin.

Media with pro-Russian editorial policy (Georgia and the World, Saqinform, TV Obiektivi), politicians (Alliance of Patriots, Georgia Troupe), anti-liberal groups, Russian governmental media (Sputnik- Georgia, Abkhazia, Ossetia), as well as other actors were all predominantly aligned with the Kremlin’s position. These actors also included Tristan Tsitelashvili, a general accused of spying for Russia in Georgia, who became one of the sources in a Russian propagandist movie as he spoke of an American trace in the Ukrainian Maidan protests and Georgian mercenary snipers.

Myth Detector identified in the Georgian social media, the pro-Kremlin media outlets, and the Russian governmental media the main and the most widely spread narratives that aim to incite anti-American sentiments and/or discredit protests in Georgia and the United States through manipulative statements, disinformation, and conspiracy theories.

Three main messages have been identified as a result of media monitoring:

  1. The U.S. is a non-democratic country;
  2. The U.S. is a non-tolerant, racist country;
  3. The protests in the U.S. are controlled from behind the scenes


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1. The U.S. is a non-democratic country;

Pro-Kremlin media outlets and pro-Russian actors try to establish the opinion that the United States is a non-democratic country. They also develop a narrative that cracking down on protesters is an accepted practice in the United States – something that is compared to the Georgian context and used to justify the dispersion of protest manifestations in Georgia and assure the public that criticism towards the government in that regard is groundless. Moreover, they try to establish the opinion that the U.S. is getting weaker, is in a crisis, and cannot manage the situation anymore – something that is used to sow skepticism towards the strategic partnership of Georgia and the U.S. It is noteworthy that after “showing” how undemocratic the U.S. is and mentioning the uncontrollable processes and the crisis in the country, the main point that the pro-Kremlin actors are trying to make is that the U.S. does not have a right to call on other countries to protect democracy and the rule of law. In the Georgian context, this message was linked to the critical reports/letters of members of the U.S. Congress towards Bidzina Ivanishvili. 


Message

Quote

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The U.S. is a non-democratic country

Maria Zakharova, press-speaker of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia: “Americans have no moral or any other right to speak of violations of human rights in other countries.” 

Gigi Maghlakelidze, Alliance of Patriots: “…we should be able to see, what democratic principles and the protection of human rights mean in the United States.”

Zviad Avaliani, host at TV Obiektivi: “Just some weeks ago there was a serious discontent in the Georgian public due to the members of the U.S. Congress saying things that many in Georgia considered an interference in the domestic affairs of Georgia… It is the irony of fate that now the American democracy has shown that there are problems there, too. ”

Arno Khidirbegashvili, Editor-in-Chier of Saqinform : "Today, the enite world witnessed that the American democracy, the protection of human rights and freedoms is... a pure bluff!"

Arno Khidirbegashvili, Editor-in-Chief of Saqinform: “The American ‘beacon of democracy’ killed thousands of people, but Georgia did not have such crackdowns as in the case of the George Floyd protests!!... I try not to say this, but – guys, go home, take care of yourselves, establish order at home!”

Valeri Kvaratskhelia, host at TV Obiektivi: “America tries to portray itself as the main beacon of democracy… In fact, they are not even slightly democratic.”

Dispersing protest manifestations is an accepted practice in the U.S.

Nana Devdariani, Global Research Center: “Ten thousand people have been arrested [in the U.S.] and I believe, [Adam] Kinsinger is going to prisons cell-by-cell to create a list of political prisoners.”

 

 

 

 

 

U.S. is weakening, it is in crisis, the situation is uncontrollable

Valeri Kvaratskhelia, author at the Georgia and the World: “All this is a clear manifestation of an agony of rotten industrial powers and relations… It is an indicator of an irreversible process of epochal cataclysms. ”

Arno Khidirbegashvili, Editor-in-Chief of Saqinform: “Mister Twisters, you have stuffed Georgians’ ears with talks about ‘institutional reforms’. However, it turns out, you are far from perfection, too! … I try not to say this, but – guys, go home, take care of yourselves, establish order at home!”

Georgia and the World, Editorial Board: “Moving trains are being looted in the U.S. during the unrests – mass unrests led to an unprecedented increase in the robbery and theft in the U.S., as the police cannot establish order in the public anymore.”

Gigi Maghlakelidze, Alliance of Patriots: “We should be able to see through which actions are both the federal and state levels of the U.S. protecting the public order. We see a complete helplessness and fiasco.”


2. The U.S. is a non-tolerant, racist country

Pro-Kremlin actors try to showcase the U.S. as a non-tolerant, racist country by artificially connecting historical events to the current developments. Through manipulating the past, they portray the problem of racism in the U.S., as if it had the same intensity as in the past.


Message Quote

The U.S. is a non-tolerant, racist country

Giorgi Kasradze, host at TV Obiektivi: “On the one hand, the death of this Floyd showed that [the U.S.] is less tolerant, in fact.”

 

 

The problem of racism in the U.S. is as actual as in the past

Jondi Baghaturia, Georgia Troupe: “The problem of racism persists in the U.S. up until today… It is a complete collapse of multiculturalism.”

Arno Khidirbegashvili, Editor-in-Chief of Saqinform: “It turns out that racism – be it white or black - has not disappeared in the U.S.”

Valeri Kvaratskhelia, host at TV Obiektivi: “Everyone admits the existence of racism in the U.S. It has deep historical roots and is, unfortunately, not solved until today.”


3. The protests in the U.S. are controlled from behind the scenes

Various conspiracy theories have been disseminated about the U.S. protests, claiming that the protests are controlled from behind the scenes and connecting them with George Soros, Democratic Party, or liberal powers. Pro-Kremlin actors, with the aim of discrediting the protests, develop an opinion that the same power stands behind the revolutions in the post-Soviet space and the U.S. events.


Message Quote

 

 

 

 

Unrest in the U.S. is funded by Soros

Tristan Tsitelashvili, a resigned general: “A tandem of George Soros and Joe Biden turned against Trump.”

Irakli Gogava, Laboratory for the Development of Georgia: “There are still organized groups in Minnesota, Minneapolis… 80% were there… Activity of Antifa was recorded. This Antifa is a group of radical leftists, traditionally funded by Soros…”

Jondi Baghaturia, Georgian Troupe: “Soros’ office… acts directly, openly, and illegally against the current government.”

Elizbar Javelidze, People’s Assembly: “This is a ‘black revolution’, organized by Soros to overthrow Trump!”

Alt-Info: “A Soros-backed St. Louis prosecutor freed all detainees of Floyd protests from prison.”

 

Protests and unrest in the U.S. are provoked by liberal powers

Gia Gabrichidze, journalist: “The bacchanalia, taking place in the world’s leading country, is an already armed fight of the so-called aggressive liberalism against the normal, healthy lifestyle.”

Jondi Baghaturia, Georgian Troupe: “…this showed that liberals will go at great lengths, so to say.”

 

 

Protests have been provoked by the Democratic Party

Tristan Tsitelashvili, a resigned general: “Joe Biden did not hesitate to organize an unrest in his own country, so he is even less likely to spare Georgia.”

Saqinform, Editorial Board: “The resignation of Trump and the transition of power in Georgia is being directed from the headquarters of a U.S. presidential candidate – Joe Biden.”

Giorgi Gigauri, journalist: “Nobody doubts anymore that ‘liberast’ pro-Soros forces and Joe Biden’s Democratic Party gang personally organized this ‘black revolution’ against Donald Trump.”

 

 

 

 

Events in the U.S. unfold in accordance with the scenario of color revolutions

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia: “Revolutions took place and legitimate governments have been overthrown in accordance with American manuals. How absurd these demands look now against the backdrop of the current intra-American situation.”

Tristan Tsitelashvili, a resigned general: “These conductors dispose of everyone… They organized a relay race of color revolutions under the pretext of ‘protecting democracy’… The shadow of color revolutions is now knocking on America’s door!”

Ivan Danilov, a columnist at RIA Novosti: “The old formula, saying that there can be no Maidan in Washington DC because there is no American embassy there, is clearly not working”

Arno Khidirbegashvili, Editor-in-Chief of Saqinform: “The ‘first economy’ will not save America anymore – it will experience something worse than the Great Depression. For instance, a ‘color revolution’, masterfully organized by the U.S. itself around the world.” 


By Ana Chitaladze