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Fake news about Putin's death intended to test Russians' reaction – Defence Intelligence of Ukraine

Wednesday, 1 November 2023, 15:41
Fake news about Putin's death intended to test Russians' reaction – Defence Intelligence of Ukraine
Putin. Photo: Getty Images

Andrii Yusov, a representative of Defence Intelligence of Ukraine, believes that recent fake news about the alleged death of Russian President Vladimir Putin was intended to test the reactions of ordinary Russians, the elite, and propaganda outlets. It was also a tool to influence Putin himself and part of a particular playbook.

Source: Andrii Yusov on NV radio

Quote: "This is sweet music for Ukrainian listeners, and it should have been good news... But it’s just a message from some anonymous Russian Telegram channels.

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It's an internal story that is intended for an internal Russian audience. Of course, it does little to help Putin personally, because there are many supporters of conspiracy theories in Russia. 

...Internal confrontations in Russia continue. They are spread in various forms, including in internal information campaigns like this one.

The basic purpose of fake news is to look at how society reacts in terms of numbers and dynamics (whether they believed it, how they reacted, what they are ready for), and to look at the reactions of individuals, the elite and the media (even propaganda outlets).

In this way, the empire, which is built on the work of the secret services, learns how to continue to rule.

It is also an instrument of influence on Putin himself or someone like him. He is forced to react, and [Dmitry] Peskov [Putin's press secretary – ed.] is forced to react and prove that this is not the case. That is, he is led down a certain corridor.

It's obvious that this is not the end of this story, but a particular playbook."

Details: Yusov also described stories such as this as "useful things to observe" for Ukraine.

Background

  • Recently, some anonymous Russian Telegram channels claimed that Putin had died on the evening of 26 October, after which preparations for a coup d'état supposedly began in Russia, as they wanted to present his double to the public.
  • Oleksii Danilov, Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defence Council, believes that the Russian fake news about Putin's "death" is part of the preparations for his presidential campaign.

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