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Ukraine's Defence Intelligence explains how Russian psyops work and how to counteract bots

Thursday, 3 August 2023, 23:05
Ukraine's Defence Intelligence explains how Russian psyops work and how to counteract bots
Andrii Yusov. Photo: army inform

The Main Directorate of Intelligence of the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine insists Russian bots need to be destroyed in terms of information, banned, and not engaged with.

Source: Andrii Yusov, representative of the Main Directorate of Intelligence, live on Ukrainian Radio

Quote: "Starting a ‘dialogue’ with an enemy bot is like arguing with a Russian tank. The invaders’ tank deserves only one thing – total destruction, and the bot deserves to be banned."

Details: Yusov stressed that Russia spares no expense on bot farms specialising in psychological operations. And the longer the war unleashed by the Russian Federation continues, the more sophisticated the enemy's psyops may become, the Ukrainian Defence Intelligence representative explains.

For the most part, the entry points are subtle. After another Russian attack on the territory of Ukraine, a message, a call or a letter from some distant "relative" from the Russian Federation appears: "How are you doing? I read that your city was attacked. Are you all right?" Yusov gave as an example of a psychological operation conducted by the Russians.

This kind of psyops as an attempt to influence the psychological state of Ukrainian defenders has been going on since 2014 and possibly even earlier than that. But it has a wave-like character, Yusov stated.

Quote: "Of course, after the beginning of the full-scale invasion, these contacts seem to have become very active, although on the other hand, we have a natural massive break in the communication of Ukrainians with their relatives or acquaintances and childhood friends living in the territory of the aggressor state.

But recently, after the intensification of the actions of the Ukrainian Security and Defence Forces and the continuation of the offensive, they are again trying to use this influence. For the most part, this has no results. But they are betting on public fatigue, demoralisation, and multiple repetitions of false propaganda narratives. Like, ‘all this must be stopped,’ ‘the main thing is achieving peace as fast as possible,’ ‘we are brothers,’ ‘America is to blame for everything,’ etc.

Together with the offensive on some sections of the front, which the Russians are trying to continue, they are trying to attack the mind, psyche and hearts of the soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and their families.

It is clear that mothers and wives waiting for the return of their sons and husbands from the front are a vulnerable part of society. The families of our prisoners of war are also in the same vulnerable category. The enemy is actively trying to exploit these weaknesses, but mostly without success."

Reference: PSYOPs stand for Psychological Operations. The purpose of PSYOPS is to influence the mood of different groups of society. PSYOP components are propaganda, disinformation, concealment of some information and inflation and exaggeration of other information, etc.

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