You might think that an article that alleges that the Kremlin is masterminding unrest in Europe by supporting right-wing extremism, left-wing extremism, anti-Europe sentiment, anti-refugee sentiment and conducting television interviews with Nigel Farage and Jeremy Corbyn…with the possible end-game of invading Latvia…to be a little “out there”. You might say that unfounded, irrational arguments of this kind – backed by no evidence at all – do not belong in a “serious” newspaper.
The Guardian, however, disagrees. They published it – twice in 24 hours.
It’s all based around this report – from Jānis Sārts at the NATO Strategic Command Centre of Excellence – that found a MASSIVE 1.45% of internet comments on Latvian social media in summer 2014 MAY HAVE BEEN Russian “trolls” (the correct term is shill, or sock-puppet, but getting things right has never been a big part of the NATO game-plan). “How can you tell they are Russian trolls” you ask? They repeat content and have bad grammar. Yes, seriously.
This mighty 1.45% of Latvian internet comments, coupled with RT, Angela Merkel’s open border policy, George Galloway and pictures of girls in bikinis all make up the Russian masterplan to shatter Europe and build an Empire on its ashes. I’m not joking. I wish I was.
This may all seem very far-fetched, but don’t fall for the Russian propaganda – Lieutenant-Colonel Simon West, branch chief at the Nato centre in Riga, has got it all figured out: Putin is planning on using Eastern Europe as a bulwark against the encroachment of “liberal democracies”.
I sometimes think I’m imagining it, but when I drove into the office today, the radio switched from music to a Russian news programme” Lt. Col. Simon West
That’s right – while he sometimes doubts his sanity (who can blame him?) he quickly changes his mind when a Russian news programme comes on the radio….in Latvia.
I wish this was satire. I wish I was joking. But this:
My cleaner is sure they are coming, as I am sure many Latvians are.” West pauses, staring at the map. “I dunno, he’s mischievous,” he adds of Putin. “I’ve got a feeling of expectation that something is going to happen.”
Is beyond parody.