There are many myths circulated in the Eastern part of Ukraine due to Russian propaganda and support of local media outlets. The pro-Russian media in Ukraine call Euromaidan “a brown plague” and citizens of Ukraine, who stood and fought for European future of Ukraine – “Banderevets”, “fascists”. What do local media outlets say in Donetsk in light of recent events in Ukraine?
Newspaper “Zhyzn” (Life) in Donetsk, Ukraine, # 35 dated 13/03/2014. Article “Economics from top to bottom”: “Of course, without the credit support, the Ukrainian economy is unlikely to survive and avoid default. However, it is obvious that there can be no talk about new credits without a new budget, and its deficit, in fact, will be the cornerstone of the cooperation with the IMF. According to the Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, published on the official website of the Ministry of Finance of Russian Federation, “the IMF has practically exhausted its own resources, and the existing programs of the fund are actually financed by borrowing agreements”. The last word in the fund’s decision can be said by China, who has a 13% stake in the budget of the IMF and the corresponding voting package. In fact, in the short term money, that the IMF may allocate in the near future, may be either Russian or Chinese “.
Article “Donbass Indignant”: “These days, when politicians and the most “honest” media in the world forced Ukraine to artificially split into the nationally conscious citizens and eastern separatists, I stand and think – where can I go and millions more people in Donetsk region? On the one hand, we are against the division of the state. We like to be friends with Russia, and not live in it. And on the other, we will never shout out pseudo-Ukrainian slogans at least because we have our own heroes, and those heroes who are being offered for praise, do not echo with us. We do not emphasize its identity, we know all the words of the Ukrainian national anthem and colours of Ukrainian flag, but we do not welcome torchlight processions and disrespect for the holiday on May 9, we speak Russian and Ukrainian languages”.
Article “Attempt of Peaceful Dialogue”: "There is an impression that the European and American politicians simply do not know what to do next. The US attempt to "show its muscles» and threaten Russia with sanctions ran into a severe reaction and counter threats. Experts estimate that such actions would lead to «irreparable consequences for both sides". But Russia's position now looks pretty strong. On the one hand, Putin can rely on the statements of the Crimean parliament and possible results of the referendum on accession to Russia. On the other, the joker in the sleeve the Russian president is ousted President Viktor Yanukovych".
The newspaper “Evening Donetsk” # 28 dated 08/03/2014: Article “Money for Kiev”: «Unpleasant news that up to 30 % of salary will deducted for the repair of the capital, has caused a storm of emotions in people of Donetsk . At a press conference on Tuesday in Donetsk Mayor Oleksandr Lukyanchenko called this situation a provocation: "This is a pure provocation, like a number of other rumors. This is done by people who want to undermine the foundations of our society and the state and do riots". In addition, in its official statement, the Office of Public Relations of the Donetsk City Council stated that "the rumors that spread in Donetsk regarding withdrawals from wages and deductions from pensions to”restore the Maidan in Kiev” are lies. These provocative statements spread with a single purpose - to sow panic and destabilize the society".
Newspaper “Donetsk news” # 10 dated 13-19/03/2014: Article “Our reality and peaceful sky”: “Once again we visit the OGA, yelling: “Russia, Gubarev, referendum!” Once more there is a change of flags. Everything is running like a script. A script written by strangers, with strangers playing the main roles. You can see their traces everywhere.
I quote a brilliant analytical commentary from “OstroVa” (“IslaNd”): “Gubarev’s words, just like the words of his separatist followers, full of unbelievable hatred towards the country in which they have lived for the last 20 years. This looks strange and illogical if you class developments in Donetsk exclusively as domestic protests. You have the right not to support the “Svoboda” party or Yatsenuk, but it is unacceptable to tear and destroy the flags of your own county. Yanykovich’s opposition have never damaged any Ukrainian symbols. Putin’s opposition in Russia have not burned Russian flags either. Nevertheless riots in Donetsk have very anti-Ukrainian characteristics. Another big mistake was vandalism. Protestors turned the Donetsk OGA into a dirty barnyard, however they were only recently criticising the uncleanliness of Maidan. They were smashing the windows and ripping out radiators in an administration building. They were turning bins in the street upside down and scattering rubbish everywhere on 6 of March. They attacked a trolleybus which had nothing to do with anything political”.
The Russian media are broadcasting the inhuman madness. They are presenting Gubarev as some sort of hero and peoples’ governor without quotation marks. Brains are being twisted so badly that my relatives in Sevastopol are calling with worry: “Never mind our problems (they say from a practically occupied city), what is happening at your place!?” Patriotic powers and national understanding are on the rise in Donetsk. The majority of Donbass’ population, which were politically indifferent, suddenly realised that Ukraine is their county. And they do not want any other. And in the background you have vandalism of the Shevchenko statue. It is a statue, what wrong has it done?”
Article “Witch hunt”: “Certain people and their organisations are highly interested in creating the myth that Crimea, Kharkev, Odessa, Donetsk etc. are filling up with masses of highly armed fascists (most likely through a temporary portal into the past), so they can repress locals. This myth is forming through the targeted dissemination of rumors. These ‘so called’ aggressors’ will of course first attack the pensions and flocks, and they will remove all the milk and eggs, secondly they will stop children talking Russian in the nurseries, thirdly they will put all the minority Russian population on a train and will force them to work in EU countries. One of the latest myths is exclusive for the Donbass miners – there will be a special tax for reconstruction of Maidan.
Opposite myths: Russia is heaven on earth and has blossoming prosperity. As a symbol of its sincere love to a brother nation, Russia would really love to bring a piece of their heaven into Ukraine, but the problem is that not all Ukrainians are in the full understanding of what sort of happiness they can get. No one who has created those myths is able to provide any structural or substantial evidence of their assertions. They just claim that in some regions of Ukraine there are evil, fascist powers that suppress the population and will do it even more. Look how cleverly propaganda is working on Russian television, like the Le Bon studies: exaggeration, statement, repetition. And people believe them! And what is the truth? The truth is always a myth that humankind believes in during their lifetime: The Earth is flat; Poseidon sinks the ships; crops are damaged by witches; half of the Ukrainian population, especially in Crimea, suffer from dark powers.
The history of humanity is always the same, always the same picture: when an illusions’ walls are broken they are replaced by a new belief, by a new illusion. If you can use simple social instruments correctly, you can keep necessary delusions in mass consciousness and use it to your own advantage: power over the crowd, new territories, and electoral support”.
Newspaper “News of Donbass” #10 from 14/03/2014. The article "The legality of Illegal Decisions": Justice Minister Pavel Petrenko: "The decisions of the Parliament, which were taken after the removal from office of Yanukovych, are legitimate and lawful ... President Viktor Yanukovych actually fled the country, withdrew from his duties. In addition, this person has a number of criminal cases on crimes against humanity. Therefore, the parliament, which made the decision a constitutional majority, had all the rights provided by the law and constitution".