19:48 Nov. 25, 2016
Political analyst Kseniia Novikova reveals the tendencies in this year's covering of Maidan anniversary in Russian media
There is a striking difference in this year's coverage of the Maidan anniversary by the Russian media. No real rage, almost no resentment, even a bit of compassion to those who died on the streets. But some things do not change.
The Russian press still calls Maidan a revolt, laughs at its European hopes and claims it didn't bring any good to Ukraine.
"IT WAS UNLAWFUL"
The Russian media are certain and firm: "What happened in Ukraine three years ago was not a revolution. The legitimate power was overthrown by a staged coup."
To confirm these allegations, they give a voice to the former prime minister of Ukraine Nikolay Azarov, who left the country just before the things on Maidan got violent:
"1 Kanal": The protest was staged from the abroad. They (the US) decided it was time to fool the Ukrainian people.
NTV: Ukraine lost its independence after the coup. It is ruled from Washington now.
The same could be heard from the former Ukrainian president Victor Yanukovich: "How could they (the Americans) interfere into our politics? That was unacceptable."
On the 3rd anniversary of Maidan, REN TV aired the Oliver Stone's "Ukraine on fire", a controversial documentary that describes Maidan in accordance with the Russian narrative.
"IT WAS PATHETIC"
"Though staged from abroad, Maidan was weak and pathetic", - claims Russian TV. All the official ceremonies dedicated to the 3rd anniversary are described with the same arrogance. The prominent example is the 1 Kanal daily show Vremya Pokazhet (Time Will Show):
They're celebrating (…)", says the host Artyom Sheynin. "Though not everything is well between these people who staged a coup, not everything is calm (...) Maybe that's because of autumn?" The host smiles and adds: "Ukrainians always have revolutions in autumn. Why?"
It sounds like a joke but the host is serious enough to discuss the autumn exacerbation with the psychiatrist (and a philosopher) Sergey Nurislamov:
- So that's not a coincidence?
- Not at all. It's the end of the year, no money left for presents, no money in the state budget (..) October and November are the months of an affective disorder. Someone gets depressed, another one becomes over-active.
The guests of the show are active indeed. They talk about the so-called revolution, they cry over the lost friendship, they hope Ukraine will eventually return to the normal historical path. They even have a pro-Ukrainian expert in the studio and the woman who witnessed Maidan:
- I watched it from my windows. I saw those brigades gathering. You can't imagine how cheap it looked, how stupid.
- Have you been on the streets, on the Maidan?
"IT WAS IN VAIN"
The Ukrainians are disappointed - the Russian channels say to their viewers - even the Maidan activists are.
"People came from all over the country. We wanted to believe in the best", - a young man introduced as Fyodor and a Maidan activist said to NTV channel. Another one, named Alexey, tells how he nearly escaped death when the Berkut opened fire. The journalist asks, full of pity and anger: "What were these people giving their lives for? To bring new oligarchs instead of the old ones?"
Not only NTV but other channels as well claim nothing good has happened to Ukraine in the last three years:
REN TV: Ukraine is spiraling down to chaos.
1 Kanal: They yelled ‘Go, Europe is waiting' but instead they came back to the 90's.
TVC: The dreams of the European paradise brought the rise in cost to housing.
5 Kanal: The so-called Revolution of dignity turned into a civil war and a nationalist orgy, into corruption and the economy decline.
"IT WILL REPEAT"
Despite detesting all the Ukrainian Maidans, the Russian media almost call for a new one. "Will we see a new coup in a neighboring country?" - asks the Army's channel Zvezda.
And then like all the federal TV channels it avidly follows every sign of discordance in Ukraine. Every protest, every burnt tire or a smashed window becomes a sign of the Third Maidan and a reason to pity and to chastise the silly little sister Ukraine and its treacherous foreign curators.
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