Russophobia has been resurrected. Paranoia and political agendas have paved the way for a culture of fear and mistrust of Moscow.
The ‘knee-jerk Russophobia’ is being propelled by a furious few, some of them making a very good living from it, thank you very much.
Simultaneously denouncing ‘misinformation’ – and making up their own stories – underqualified and overzealous Kremlin critics are bringing back decades-old suspicions and stereotypes.
From announcing the ‘new’ Cold War, to celebrity endorsements… RT rates the top 10 Russophobes.
1. John McCain: The life-long Russophobe
First place is also a lifetime achievement award for services to Russophobia. John McCain is a veteran, and failed presidential candidate, and boy does he have it in for Moscow.
Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) terrorists have murdered, maimed, raped and abused tens of thousands. But, according to McCain, President Vladimir Putin is more dangerous.
McCain spends much of his energy these days pushing for as many sanctions against Russia as Congress can stomach. We’re not saying he’s obsessed, but way back in 2005 he was trying to get Russia chucked out of the G8 when everyone else was still friends.
2. NATO – The global Russophobe
NATO is a Cold War alliance designed to fight the Soviet Union. So can someone please tell these warriors of yesteryear the Cold War is over and there is no Soviet Union anymore?
This military alliance is Russophobia institutionalized. But remember, even though battalions of NATO troops have been newly stationed on Russia’s border since the Cold War ended and 13 new members have joined since 1999, Moscow is the aggressive one!
3. Louise Mensch: The Russophobe ‘reporter’
Louise Mensch is a former British Conservative MP-turned-prolific paranoid Tweeter. This Russophobe has a huge problem with fake news, unless of course it’s her own.
Mensch backed claims of a US/Russia plot, including allegations Donald Trump ran a Russian-backed sex-trafficking ring out of his New York modeling agency.
She was still backing those claims when the source of the story admitted they were completely made up.
4. Hillary Clinton: The convenient Russophobe
Hillary Clinton has been trying for years to get back in the White House to no avail, now she’s worked out why. Can you guess who or what is to blame?
Nepotistic tendencies? No. The allegations she used her personal email for confidential business? Nope. Her husband and her history? Absolutely not.
In her new book ‘What Happened,’ Clinton blames Russia. Convenient.
5 & 6. Anne Applebaum & Edward Lucas: The writer Russophobes
Washington Post columnist Applebaum and the Economist’s Lucas have literally made a living from seeing Russia’s presence behind everything.
Lucas, an author and editor, has previously called for a gag on RT while writing his very own take on Russian relations.
Applebaum has simultaneously accused Russia of inventing conspiracy theories about the US which will “never die,” while claiming Moscow is directly influencing the White House.
They can both be found at the Center For European Policy, manning their self-drawn frontline against ‘Information Warfare,’ and waiting for invitations to unleash on Russia at any one of dozens of conferences with titles like “Hacks and (Fake) Facts: Warfare in the Information Space.”
That ’warfare’ is lucrative for some.
7 & 8. Morgan Freeman & Rob Reiner: The red-carpet Russophobes
Morgan Freeman is one of the most recognizable faces in Hollywood, and he’s lent it to the cause of Russophobia.
“We have been attacked,” he announced for the hard-right neocon, non-profit Committee to Investigate Russia (CIR) in a two-minute video about Moscow’s apparent influence in the US.
Director and producer Rob Reiner joined Freeman.
But then he is the man behind satirical masterpiece ‘Spinal Tap,’ so we’ll assume he thought he was in a mockumentary and played it for comedy.
9. BuzzFeed: The listicle Russophobe
When BuzzFeed runs out of cat video listicles and gifs from ‘Friends,’ Russia is target number one.
The glee in the BuzzFeed office when the infamous Trump-Russia dossier arrived in the post must have been uncontained. The rest of the media decided publishing the claims might break a few journalistic ethics on, y’know, checking if stuff is true.
BuzzFeed admitted “the allegations are unverified, and the report contains errors” and went with it anyway. Even the Washington Post called the decision “ridiculous.”
10. Molly McKew: The ‘misguided’ Russophobe
Molly McKew is relatively new on the Russophobe scene, but she’s causing some waves. Some of the musings from this infowar “specialist” are upsetting even other members of the anti-Russia rent-a-gob crowd.
The Committee to Investigate Russia took the ex-consultant to tie-chewing former Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili (who’s not exactly a renowned fan of Russia) on board of course. Clearly for some objective analysis.
Here’s one of her nuggets of wisdom from Politico: “American power … is the only escape from Putin’s corrosive vision of a world at permanent war.”
Where do you start with that?!
Perhaps the considerably more respected analyst Leonid Bershidsky said it best when he called her arguments against Moscow “simplistic and misguided.”