Peter Pomerantsev discusses changes in propaganda: from an alternative political system (in Soviet propaganda) to the undercutting of the provability of truth itself (in contemporary Russian propaganda).
The mysterious disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 in 2014 has triggered amazement—how can a jet with world-class technology vanish from the earth while a tiny device like an iPhone can be located with an app?
“The Stack is understood as a massively distributed technological infrastructure, in which, on which, and with which we organize our cultures, economies and societies, but also as an abstract model to conceptualize subdivisions of political geography that are not just about horizontal adjacencies, but about vertical layers.”
BBC News, February 7, 2014: “An apparently bugged phone conversation in which a senior US diplomat disparages the EU over the Ukraine crisis has been posted online.” The conversation between Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and the US Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, is now a classic, appearing to show how, behind the scenes, US politicians control the Ukrainian government. The authenticity of the recording was never contested.
Enjoykin’s massive 2014 YouTube hit “Nyash Myash” celebrated the Russian annexation of Crimea through a remix of a press conference by its Putin-appointed chief prosecutor, Natalia Poklonskaya. Also known as the “prosecutie,” Poklonskaya became an internet sensation in Asia and a subject of anime drawing.
Peter Pomerantsev describes a self-inflicted powerlessness of Western governments in the face of supra-national institutions like the European Union, and developments such as globalization. Then, enter Natalia Poklonskaya, the new, Russia-appointed chief prosecutor for Crimea.
Two men speak on the phone in an intercepted recording by the Ukrainian secret service, a day after the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 by a surface-to-air missile over eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014.
Igor “Strelkov” Girkin, formerly in charge of the armed forces of pixelated Novorossiya in eastern Ukraine, and Marat Musin, of the Abkhazian News Network Agency “Anna News,” entertain a monologue-as-question.
In her seminal poem, Akhmatova narrates the atrocities and injustices of war and the Stalin era. But she does so with a voice from deep within the situation. The lyrical take on the Don river turns dark, as the poem reveals a gripping secret that affects our relationship to the narrator directly.
In 2014, a strange set of events unfolds.
Without apparent plan or structure, they seem connected.
Our views of the world are changing,
as if we wake up from a dream.
We no longer see the internet as a means of communication,
but as a way to change the nature of reality itself.
Mind-warped, pixelated illusions replace our faith in information,
ideologies collide in chasms of uncertainty and hope.
We are gazing at our screens, trapped in the sprawl.