Proceedings of The World Conference on Social Sciences
Russian ,,Soft Power’’: Georgia Against Russian Soft Power and Propaganda
The use of Russian,, Soft Power’’ and propaganda for the purpose of realizing foreign policy objectives has become increasingly noticeable in different parts of the world. Russian,, Soft Power’’ in line with state-developed and controlled propaganda is commonly used to create and distribute narratives supporting the current regime in the Kremlin. By the spread of disinformation, biased interpretation of historical facts, and aggressive manipulation of value systems, Moscow is attempting to legitimize its external actions and justify its geopolitical interests. Russian,, soft power’’ significantly differs from Western,, soft power’’.
In exchange for mutually beneficial economic and political cooperation, Russia is offering the format of collaboration which could be only beneficial for Russia in the political context. Therefore, the lack of attractive elements leads Russia to the formation of unusual,, soft power’’ instruments which are mainly based on the creation of unconventional narratives and the spread of anti-Western propaganda. Russian propaganda is especially influential to the most vulnerable parts of the society, in which both a general awareness about the benefits provided through Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic cooperation and the potential for direct use of the aforementioned benefits are relatively low. Due to Russian propaganda, the narrative under which Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic integration is associated with the loss of national and cultural identity has become particularly strong in Georgian society.
The Russian Federation has been ramping up its use of propaganda as an effective weapon for achieving its political goals in foreign countries. Georgia is no exception. Even though Kremlin has a long history of employing propaganda to secure its interests, its sophistication and scale have substantially increased in recent years. As western countries are already working on countermeasures, the Georgian government must also recognize this growing problem and develop its own policy.
Keywords: Russian,, Soft Power’’, Propaganda, Unconventional Narratives.