June 3, 2023

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Putin unveils a guide on how to prepare the Russians for defeat


Ukraine war

May 3, 2023 | 12:05 p.m

Vladimir Putin appears to be so worried about a potential defeat in Ukraine that he has issued new guidelines to Russia’s state-controlled media on how to cover Ukraine’s expected counterattack.

The idea behind the manual, which was prepared by the President’s office and sent to Russian propagandists, is to moderate public expectations.

Meduza, the independent Russian-language news outlet She said she was given a copy of the manual, which gives specific instructions to journalists on how to highlight Russian successes on the battlefield and downplay the defeats.

In the document, the Kremlin orders reporters “not to lower expectations of the NATO-supported counterattack announced by Ukraine,” and not to report that Kiev is unprepared for the move.

Indeed, pro-government media should emphasize in their coverage that Ukraine’s Western allies are providing weapons and support to Kiev in anticipation of the spring counteroffensive.

Two sources close to the Putin regime told the Latvian-based newspaper Meduza that there is a clear positive trend in improving Ukraine’s military capabilities.

Vladimir Putin, left, appears concerned enough about a possible defeat in Ukraine that he issued new guidelines to the media aimed at managing public expectations regarding the war’s outcome.
The leaked evidence instructs the state-controlled media to highlight the amount of arms and aid that Ukraine, led by Volodymyr Zelensky, is receiving from its allies before its counterattack.

If the attack fails, it will be possible to say: No [Russia] The army brilliantly repulsed a very powerful attack. A source said that the value of this victory will rise significantly.

If Ukraine manages to regain its occupied lands and drive the invaders out of the country, “the loss is also explainable,” according to the source.

“After all, the West has concentrated a huge amount of effort on the front, but its successes – compared to those efforts – have been very modest. In other words, in general, the Russian army is holding its own,” the source said.

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If the Ukrainian army deals a blow to Moscow’s forces, its flags will envelop them as a result of massive Western support.

The booklet also advises journalists not to focus their attention on the amount of money Russia is spending on rebuilding infrastructure in occupied and annexed Ukrainian territories.

According to Meduza, that amount is likely higher than $12.5 billion — roughly a third of Russia’s budget deficit for the first quarter of 2023, which totaled more than $30 billion.

Instead, pro-Kremlin media outlets should focus on solving problems in Russia by reporting on reforms to schools and hospitals.

Russia accused Ukraine of trying to assassinate Putin with a drone strike on the Kremlin.
via Reuters

Institute for the Study of War (ISW) Comment on the leaked guidewrites in his latest update that the document, if authentic, “indicates that the Kremlin is preparing for — if not anticipating — Ukrainian successes and planning to mitigate frustrations in the Russian information sphere.”

ISW analysts added that the media’s guidelines represent “a significant Russian adaptation from previous Ukrainian counterattacks in Kherson and Kharkiv, which have produced massive shockwaves and frustration in both the Russian information space and the Russian military that the Kremlin is likely seeking to mitigate.”

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