The Russian Foreign Ministry is planning to open a Facebook page in the near future© RIA Novosti. Ruslan Krivobok
MOSCOW, July 16 (RIA Novosti)
Russia has moved to increase its influence in the international arena by encouraging its diplomats to use social media, the Kommersant daily reported on Monday.
The Russian Foreign Ministry is planning to open a Facebook page in the near future and has already launched special courses to teach diplomats how to make the most of their Twitter accounts to help promote Russia’s position on the world stage, the report said.
“To achieve this, special instructions have been sent to all [Russian] embassies,” the paper said.
The ministry is also planning to redesign its official webpage by the end of the year, it said.
Last week, the ministry launched a YouTube account (midrftube) where internet users can watch videos of speeches by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and other senior Russian diplomats, as well as other video materials related to Russia’s foreign policy and international relations.
During a closed-door meeting with Russian ambassadors last week, President Vladimir Putin urged diplomats to actively use new technologies to improve Russia’s image and defend its interests, Kommersant said, quoting an official who attended the meeting.
“It’s not enough to just crow something once… We should explain our positions again and again, using various platforms and new technologies, until they understand,” the official, who spoke on conditions of anonymity, quoted Putin as saying.
Putin called on Russian diplomats last week to be proactive, constructive, pragmatic and flexible, and promised that Russia’s foreign policy “will remain self-sufficient and independent,” but will not slide into “isolationism or confrontation.”
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- bielecThere is more to be done07:25, 16/07/2012Quote: "We should explain our positions again and again, using various platforms and new technologies, until they understand." - President Putin.
Understanding is only part of the problem. Lies and manipulation of public opinion by Western politicians and pro-Western media are deliberate. They understand that they are lying. They must be confronted and corrected, so that people in the West can find both sides of the stories being told.
Russia must participate more aggressively in this information war. For example, Russia should have released its satellite and radar data on the Turkish jet downed by Syria immediately following the incident - in order to disable Western attempts to use it as pretext for war. Russia must have had radar data recorded by its warships stationed in Tartus.
There will be further attempts and false flag operations. Timely responses and publication of evidence are essential to prevent war and neutralize criminals who push for war. Such materials could and should also be used to charge the warmongers with crimes against peace. This is what International Criminal Court is for. Russia should be more active in utilizing it.
- adelaaf(no title)01:43, 17/07/2012I totally agree w/ you!
Of course this problem of the deliberate manipulation of public opinion goes beyond matters of international policy. The way Russia and its political leaders are portrayed in the West is equally biased and manipulative.
Correcting this will probably take more than diplomatic assertiveness. I fear it may require the sort of aggressive marketing campaign the Americans are renowned for.
New ties between Russia and Japan would mark not only a breakthrough in their relations but also a significant shift in Northeast Asia’s political dynamic. Both are secondary players in a region overshadowed by an increasingly assertive China, which has not hesitated to push against the boundaries of its neighbors.