Tag Archives | Vladimir Putin

Game of trolls: the hip digi-kids helping Putin’s fight for online supremacy

Kremlin trolls somehow get idealized by the media. Other trolls are just trolls. Thoughts on that in the comments please. Here’s the latest Guardian Kremlin troll profile:

The job ads give little away. They ask only for “content managers” or “production editors” in a nondescript part of St Petersburg, and offer an above-average salary.

But for successful applicants, a thriving business offering rich opportunities for creativity and professional growth awaits. You can hone your writing skills subtly weaving patriotic sentiments into blog posts about beauty tips, fortune-telling, fishing or photography. You can revile the United States and Ukraine, posting news links and funny photo memes to local forums. If your English and political loyalty is flawless, you may even get the chance to insert angry comments on major western news sites.

kremlin troll

If you’re really at the cutting edge, you can make viral videos about superheroes and breast implants, then drop in an insult about Barack Obama once in a while.

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Welcome To Patriot Park, Vladimir Putin’s ‘Military Disneyland’

How long before the United States decides it needs its own military Disneyland? Oh wait, is that what Jade Helm is about? The Washington Times profiles Russia’s Patriot Park:

MOSCOW — Smiling children run from tanks to rocket launchers, pausing only to check out the range of Kalashnikov assault rifles on display. Others crane their necks to admire military helicopters and fighter jets in the sky above. For dinner, the menu offers up real army rations.

Welcome to Patriot Park, a sprawling site an hour’s drive from Moscow that has come to be known as Russia’s “military Disneyland.”

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Opened by Russian President Vladimir Putin last month, the $368 million theme park — so the Kremlin hopes — will become an important element in what authorities call vital “military-patriotic work with young people” by the time it is fully operational in 2017. Mr. Putin used the opportunity at the opening of the theme park to announce that Russia would add 40 intercontinental ballistic missiles to its massive nuclear arsenal this year.

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Putin: ‘Let me tell you something – there is no need to fear Russia’

In a lengthy and wide-ranging with Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, Vladimir Putin disputes the west’s characterization of Russia – and presumably Putin as its leader – as aggressive:

Russia does not speak with anyone in a contentious tone, and in such matters, to quote a political figure from the past, Otto von Bismarck, it is not discussions but the potential that counts.

Vladimir Putin

What does the actual potential show? US military spending is higher than that of all countries in the world taken together. The aggregate military spending of NATO countries is 10 times, note – 10 times higher than that of the Russian Federation. Russia has virtually no bases abroad. We have the remnants of our armed forces (since Soviet times) in Tajikistan, on the border with Afghanistan, which is an area where the terrorist threat is particularly high. The same role is played by our airbase in Kyrgyzstan; it is also aimed at addressing the terrorist threat and was set up at the request of the Kyrgyz authorities after a terrorist attack perpetrated by terrorists from Afghanistan on Kyrgyzstan.

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Vladimir Putin Is Autistic – Says The U.S. Government

Talk about disinformation – the U.S. Government’s “Office of Net Assessment” (a military think tank) claimed in a report that Vladimir Putin has a form of autism, reports the Telegraph:

A top secret Pentagon report has concluded that Vladimir Putin suffers from Asperger’s syndrome.

The study from 2008, which was based only on videos of Putin, claimed that the Russian president’s mother had a stroke whilst pregnant with him that left lasting damage.

640px-Vladimir_Putin_12020

As a result his “neurological development was significantly interrupted in infancy,” the report says.

Putin’s authoritarian style and obsession with “extreme control” is a way of overcompensating for his condition, the researchers concluded

Putin’s actions have been under particular scrutiny since last year when he ordered Russian troops to annexe eastern Ukraine.

The report was prepared in 2008 for the US military’s Office of Net Assessment, a secretive think tank, and was written by Brenda Connors, an expert in movement pattern analysis at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island.

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David Lynch Does Ice Bucket Challenge and Nominates Vladimir Putin

Instead of being vague and click-baiting everyone, I went ahead and put the spoiler in the headline. I don’t want to make everyone watch yet another ice bucket challenge video. But I wanted to share because, after all, it is David Lynch. Besides, often will you get to see Lynch playing Somewhere Over the Rainbow horribly on a trumpet as iced espresso is dumped over his head?

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Edward Snowden: Vladimir Putin Must Be Called to Account on Surveillance Just Like Obama

Photo: www.kremlin.ru (CC)

Photo: www.kremlin.ru (CC)

Edward Snowden writes at the Guardian:

On Thursday, I questioned Russia’s involvement in mass surveillance on live television. I asked Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, a question that cannot credibly be answered in the negative by any leader who runs a modern, intrusive surveillance program: “Does [your country] intercept, analyse or store millions of individuals’ communications?”

I went on to challenge whether, even if such a mass surveillance program were effective and technically legal, it could ever be morally justified.

The question was intended to mirror the now infamous exchange in US Senate intelligence committee hearings between senator Ron Wyden and the director of national intelligence, James Clapper, about whether the NSA collected records on millions of Americans, and to invite either an important concession or a clear evasion. (See a side-by-side comparison of Wyden’s question and mine here.)

Clapper’s lie – to the Senate and to the public – was a major motivating force behind my decision to go public, and a historic example of the importance of official accountability.

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Actor Steven Seagal Gushes Praise for Putin; May Relocate to Russia

PIC: Samantha Murphy (CC)

PIC: Samantha Murphy (CC)

Yes. It’s true. Steven Seagal said that he may consider moving to Russia. The action movie star is a big fan of Vladimir Putin, apparently. As soon as you wipe your eyes clean of the tears you’ve undoubtedly shed at the thought of losing national treasure Seagal to Russia, you can read the more at Raw Story.

Do svidaniya, Steven!

Via Raw Story:

Action movie star Steven Seagal said in an interview with the Moscow Times that he is in favor of Russia’s military action in Crimea and that he may someday emigrate to the former Soviet Union.

According to Atlantic magazine’s The Wire blog, Seagal called Putin “one of the great world leaders” and said he “would like to consider him as a brother.”

While the action star’s fortunes have faded somewhat in this hemisphere, in Russia, Seagal is still a huge star. Of late, he has befriended wealthy Russian oligarchs who have convinced him to support Putin’s aggression against Ukraine.

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Putin: ‘I Envy’ Obama’s Spy Program

Vladimir_Putin_12015And Vladimir, I envy your forthrightness, notably not a quality that Mr. Obama shares with you. USA Today reports on the Russian President’s latest unscripted statements:

Russia President Vladimir Putin says his government is not working with National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden, and defended President Obama over his spying program — sort of.

“How do I feel about Obama after Snowden’s revelations? I envy him, because he can get away with it,” Putin said during a Thursday news conference in Russia.

Speaking a day after a White House advisory panel released a report recommending changes in NSA programs, Putin defended espionage in general.

He called it “one of the oldest professions in the world, just like some other well-known professions — we won’t mention them here,” an apparent reference to prostitution.

But Putin did say regulations, such as those envisioned for the NSA, are necessary: “On political level, it’s necessary to limit the appetite of special services with certain rules.”

As for Snowden — granted political asylum by Russia earlier this year — Putin said: “To speak in professional jargon, operatively speaking, we are not working with him, and we never worked with him…

[continues at USA Today]

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The Secret American Subculture of Putin-Worshippers

Photo: www.kremlin.ru (CC)

Photo: www.kremlin.ru (CC)

The disinformation® website was originally tagged as “The Subculture Search Engine” (back in 1996), so we like to think we know something about American subcultures. Putin-Worship caught us somewhat by surprise, however. Marin Cogan profiles the worshippers for National Journal:

Two years ago, Gayne C. Young, a Texas-based writer and blogger for Outdoor Life, scored the interview of a lifetime. As a beat writer, Young had enjoyed the outdoor exploits of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has been documented shooting a gray whale with a crossbow, tranquilizing a tiger attacking a news crew, hunting shirtless, fishing shirtless, and riding horseback shirtless. On a personal level, Young liked the rugged brand of masculinity that seemed a throwback to Teddy Roosevelt. “Although you have Clinton shooting ducks, you never see it. Although Rick Perry says he enjoys hunting, you don’t see it. They say they do, but they don’t.

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