Why the Conspiracy Field Is a Natural Relay for the Kremlin

“Look what they did to their own people! » In address to the nation on February 21, Vladimir Putin accused the West of engaging in pedophilia ” standard”A bizarre attack, typical of Kremlin tenants, but one that did not shock the protest areas most indulging in conspiracy theories, such as the QAnon community, which imagined a pedophile elite in the White House.

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This is just one of many echoes. Condemning the so-called “Ukronazis”, the rumors that the US is hiding germ weapons in Ukraine, blaming the Russian military for every massacre of civilians… For a year, and the beginning of the war in Ukraine, few people have these delirious Papers by telegraph operators in the Kremlin and conspiracy theorists in the West have focused on this.

Convergence has allowed the two fields to take turns with each other in a constant ping-pong game today. “what’s the problemobserved the political scientist Pierre-André Taguieff, author of several reference works on conspiracy, It is to distinguish the propaganda discourse fabricated by Kremlin strategists from the multiplicity of Russian and French intrigue fields that surround it and can be manipulated. »

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picked up by the kremlin

Since 2008, Vladimir Putin’s Russia has been flirting with protest communities who believe in conspiracy, notably through its state media RT (formerly Russia Today) and Sputnik, as well as its annexation of Osei from the south ladder. “RT has then deployed all the Russian disinformation and has found relays in the conspiracy, even if it’s not as structured as it is today”remembers Rudy Reichstadt, founder and director of the conspiracy-watching website.

Since then, RT has stayed true to its “dare to question” motto, focusing on the “yellow vests” and then covidosceptics during the Covid-19 crisis, never contradicting itself to better please them.Russian Exile Investigation Station Investigation Medusa It follows that RT has adjusted its discourse for each country in 2021, even if that means discourse to the contrary.

During the health crisis related to Covid-19, the RT network released anti-mask videos intended only for Western audiences.

Its editor, Margarita Simonyan, described Russian vaccine skeptics as “Antiviral idiots” and D’“murderer” on the national stage while promoting the voices of anti-vaccine activists and conspiracy theorists in their foreign editions. Conspiracy influencers have retaliated against him since Russia’s attempted invasion of Ukraine, mostly in Russia’s defense.

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