This holiday season, many media stories relate to the New Year’s and Christmas topics. New Year’s propaganda, which is distributed in the temporarily occupied territories of the Zaporizhzhia region, is no exception. Disguised in tinsel and bright garlands, it is still propaganda.
In this review, the MIL Ukraine journalist collected several bright samples of New Year’s materials with signs of propaganda. For example, in the December edition of the Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper, which is distributed in the temporarily occupied territories, there are materials with Russian narratives about “One nation, one culture”, “Reunification”, “One country”, etc. In some materials, the appropriation of Ukrainian culture can be traced.
Also included in the review was a material that mentions the involvement of children and teenagers from the temporarily occupied cities of the Zaporizhzhia region to “Yunarmy” (Youth Army), a children’s and youth Russian paramilitary organization that operates under the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation.
The publication mentions how Ukrainian children travel to Moscow as part of the “Yunnarmy” activities, which in itself is a disturbing message. And next to the text about how the “United Russia” party gives them sets of branded winter clothes before the day of the Constitution of the Russian Federation and the comment that more than 100 schoolchildren from the region have already joined the organization – causes even more concern. A quote from the so-called “Chief of Staff” of “Yunarmy” Fidal Bukbulatov attracts special attention:
“One of the main goals of the movement is the formation of the youth’s readiness and ability to fulfill their civic duty and constitutional duties to protect the Motherland.”
The December publications of the occupation media were not without fake messages. For example, the Telegram channel “Zaporozhskyi Vestnik” reported that in a kindergarten in Poltava children were allegedly shown a leaflet against Santa Claus. Allegedly, one of the arguments against Grandfather Frost is that he lives with an underage granddaughter, is always sad and is a relic of the Soviet past.
But the “pro” of Santa Claus should be promoted by the fact that he “lives with a negro-dwarf, walks cleanly through a dirty pipe and is closer to Western values” (quote). The fact that the photo is fake is evidenced by the original sources of the image (only Russian sites) and the absence of any local context on it.