(...) Which brings me to the bill that was passed last week by the US Senate's Foreign Relations Committee, the so-called "Russian Aggression Prevention Bill", that authorises $10 million a year to be used to counter "Russian propaganda" in Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova. It all has to do with financing broadcasts by the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty to these fine destinations. It is no doubt a welcome boost for these mouthpieces of the Cold War that are going through a renaissance these days. Obviously, these amounts are totally separate from other branches of the US government spending on the propaganda war with Russia. It doesn't, for example, include $100m provided by the US to NGOs in Russia and $25m to opposition bloggers, according to the respected Russian website, politonline.ru.
We already know that the US has spent a massive $5bn on "promoting democracy in Ukraine" alone, as revealed by Victoria Nuland of the US State Department. But every little helps, as they say, especially if we add all those freebies like I mentioned above. Not forgetting that the EU has its own programmes of "helping to promote democracy" in Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova; so whatever the US spends, it triggers a chain reaction among its allies.
The Russian answer to that is not very impressive, if you consider that the TV channel Russia Today reportedly gets nearly $500m a year to run all of its services across the world and the Voice of Russia radio station that broadcasts in around 50 countries is said to have a modest $25m budget. Both of these services are not widely available in Georgia and Moldova and are banned in Ukraine. And if you consider that RT and VoR don't have the same access to audiences in the West as the mighty US broadcasters, it really doesn't look all that impressive. (...)
Dehumanizing People and Euphemizing War by Haig Bosmajian Dr. Bosmajian , a professor of speech communication at the University of Washington in Seattle, in 1983 received the George Orwell Award. Presented by the National Council of Teachers of English, for his book The Language of Oppression (Public Affairs Press). This article appeared in the Christian Century December 5, 1984, p. 1147.
In his definitive work The Destruction of the European Jews (Quadrangle, 1961), Raul Hilberg presents some insights that are as relevant to the United States today as they were to Nazi Germany a half-century ago. If we believe that we must remember the tragedies of history so that we will not repeat them, we ought to pay special attention to Hilberg’s assertion that in a Western society, destructive activity is not just a technocratic phenomenon. The problems arising in a destructive process are not only administrative but also psychological. A Christian is commanded to choose good and to reject evil. The greater his destructive task, therefore, the more potent are the moral obstacles in his way. These obstacles must be removed — the internal conflict must somehow be resolved. One of the principal means through which the perpetrator will attempt to clear his conscience is by clothing his victim in a mantle of evil, by portraying the victim as an object that must be destroyed.
(...) To remove the moral obstacles to such a course, leaders, both political and religious, euphemize killing and the weapons of destruction and dehumanize the potential victims in order to justify their extermination. (...)