The creation of Freemasonry lodges and Supreme Councils in our country is becoming business and politics The Russian hybrid war in Bulgaria has a new important target – the unity of Bulgarian Freemasonry. After breaking this unity, the next step would be their subsequent subordination to Kremlin interests and the resulting domination of Russian Masons in the Balkans. The first considerable breakthrough is already a fact – on May 5th this year a constituent assembly for the installation of a new Second Supreme Council of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite was held in Plovdiv. It elected as Grand Commander a very controversial person – Ivan Sariev, who until a year ago was the Grand Master of the local Masons. Just a few weeks later, on
A year ago, the stars’ alignment seemed perfect for Mr. Putin’s plans to subdue the West, scoring media coups and consecutive foreign policy successes. He rejoiced with the image of a strong and omnipotent leader, profiting from the intentionally blurred difference between his real and perceived power, while enjoying the privilege of operational surprise over his opponents. The dominant perception was that he is capable of penetrating the most intimate political and social fabrics of Western democracies. The refugee wave in Europe acted as a catalyst to the stun policy – the EU was on the brink of being overwhelmed by the Kremlin’s multi-layered hybrid war machine. Putin’s campaigns of influence ridiculed the few sobering voices in the West, easily dismissing warnings of an all-out assault against the
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Bulgaria has recently become one of the targets of the ongoing Kremlin influence campaign, evidenced by pivots made by Russia’s propaganda war machine – “Russia Today” and “Sputnik International”. Until recently, Sofia had been spared the ‘’benevolence’’ of Putin’s media spearheads, as Moscow had been concentrating its chief hybrid efforts on the main battlefronts – first Greece, then Brexit and finally the citadel of the West – the US and the presidential race. A quick comparison between RT’s and Sputnik’s coverage of events in Bulgaria during 2014, 2015 and 2016, and at present will suffice to reach a conclusion – Bulgaria has entered the final and decisive leg of the Kremlin’s hybrid operation. In the rare instances in the past when news from Sofia appeared on their newswire, the coverage
Changes in Russian TV Propaganda Landscape My friend, a veteran journalist from Eastern Europe, can hardly be called a Kremlin sympathizer. То the contrary, his credentials as a veteran anti-communist and defender of press freedom are impeccable. He never had a chance to have his writings published in the old USSR (until 1989 mostly writing for Western magazines), or for that matter in Putin-controlled media, nothing to say about being on Russian prime time TV. That is – until recently. Now, welcome to the new Kremlin TV propaganda reality. Being stonewalling and often ridiculed by major Western media, the new Russian government propaganda machine began to change, modernizing its approach. It started with the overhaul of Kremlin foreign language programs. What used to be rather dull and rhetorical
“They (the Europeans) look at the Russian people as barbarians, who wander in Europe rejoicing, that somewhere and something can be destroyed – and destroy it just for the sake of destruction, for fun, for the pleasure of simply overseeing its demise, like hordes of savages, like huns, ready to launch as assault on the ancient Rome and to demolish the holy shrines, without any appreciation of the value of what they are destroying” Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Writer’s Diary – Dnevnik Pisatelya) Putin has entered the final stage of his tenure at the helm of the Kremlin. Whatever he achieves abroad will not matter if the internal situation continues to disintegrate in a seemingly irreversible and self-propelling downward spiral. The Russian president is trying the ultimate
Speculation regarding the foreign policy of President-elect Donald Trump has been on the rise for quite some time, with focus on topics concerning the EU and Eastern Europe. Most speculation emanates from the lack of understanding of the rational and irrational mix in his populist rhetoric and reality checks during his presidential candidacy, as well as once he is in office. Some of the uneasiness surrounding what Trump might engage in after he walks into the White House is based on his purported privileged relations with Russia’s Putin, which supposedly allow him to circumvent the European Union, Eastern Europe and the US Congress. This is nothing new in the history of US presidential races in which there is only one prize that matters – the Oval Office. Anything
The cutting edge of the Russian propaganda in America, Bulgarian Daniel Ivandzhiyski, was rarely used for hybrid operations in Bulgaria. In practice, his financial blog Zero Hedge is almost unknown at home. However, a few days ago Mr. Ivandzhiyski was activated in Bulgaria by Boyan Chukov, a former communist foreign intelligence officer. Apparently, Russian centers for information war against Bulgaria have been experiencing difficulties and were forced to finally release Zero Hedge for domestic consumption. Mr. Chukov’s position is particularly important to the Kremlin, as is evident from the title of an article published in the openly pro-Russian website Pogled (Overview): “Berlin and Sofia together against the “hawks “. Russia was particularly unnerved by the possibility of joint actions by NATO countries and Ukraine in the Black Sea. Prime