Until the full-scale invasion of Ukraine last year, much of the success of Russia under President Vladimir Putin has been due to the skilful spreading of Kremlin narratives to the world, frequently via the Russian diaspora.
But not all Russians abroad toe the propaganda line. A group in Australia has taken matters into its own hands, just as the Kremlin’s behaviour has become more undemocratic and threatening.
They formed the Svoboda Alliance – “Svoboda” is the Russian word for freedom. It has called on the “Australian government to expel Russian diplomats for their lies and propaganda”.
Given the interest in Elon Musk’s flirtation with the Kremlin view on Ukraine, the topic of the Western tech world’s openness to Kremlin narratives has emerged again. I’ve gotten a small spike of interest in a presentation I made at SXSW in 2018. So I’ll share it here again in a downloadable form. If I did the same presentation today, I’d have much to add – including about Elon Musk.