He does not recognize his own. How Putin mistook a pro-Kremlin publicist’s satire for Ukrainian propaganda

On September 1, Vladimir Putin, at an open lesson "talking about the important", which he held in Kaliningrad, said :

“Yesterday I spoke with Minister of Education Sergey Sergeevich Kravtsov. He was in Donetsk, in other territories. He told me yesterday, and I just, excuse me, opened my mouth. Schoolchildren did not even know that the Crimean bridge existed. They thought it was fake."

Open your mouth and really have something, the scale of the fake is impressive. The only pity is that Putin did not ask where this version came from.

In May 2018, RIA Novosti published an article "The Forge of Fake Creation: TOP 6 Myths About the Crimean Bridge". it listed publications in the Ukrainian press, which spoke of technical problems with the bridge, the automobile part of which had just been opened at that time. These publications were quite similar, they said that in winter the bridge would collapse due to the impact of ice, as happened with its predecessor in 1945, that the bridge piers sank, and one of them even cracked, and so on. But the RIA review began with a truly extraordinary flight of fancy:

Myth #1: The bridge is a hologram from Mosfilm.
The most absurd and curious, and therefore the most memorable, in a long list of informational fabrications about the "construction of the century" is an article published last September in one of the Ukrainian Internet publications.
According to the author of this in its own way original opus, the bridge to the Crimea does not actually exist, and the photo from the construction site is a plasticine toy model of a transport crossing, competently shot at the Mosfilm film studio. At the same time, the railway arch installed by bridge builders, according to the publication, is a hologram.
“Everyone paid attention to the too colorful pictures of the installation of the railway span on supports weighing six thousand tons. The sun gently illuminates the water area, the boats are sailing, buzzing. A hologram, definitely, ”the publication says.
The journalist simply did not believe that Russian specialists were able to manufacture and install an arched span weighing more than 6,000 tons, saying that there are no technologies in Russia capable of creating such details.”

In which edition this bold version appeared, RIA did not say, but it turned out to be easy to find, especially since it was reprinted by the InoSMI portal, which, like RIA, is part of the Rossiya Segodnya media group. She came out in the online edition of Versions.com and is called Superstar .

As it turned out, RIA, citing the article, edited it a little. The phrase about boats and holograms actually looks like this:

“No one here doubts that the so-called Crimean Bridge is just pavilion shooting at the Mosfilm studio. Everyone paid attention to the too colorful pictures of the installation of a railway span on supports weighing six thousand tons. The sun gently illuminates the water area, boats, s ... ka, are sailing, buzzing. Hologram, for sure. In fact, our combat swimmers, who went through the harsh school of repelling the Kremlin’s nuclear aggression at the Donetsk airport, have long since bombed the miserable attempts of the Russians to hammer piles.”

And then more:

“They are freaking out there. They spread fakes on the net, taken with the help of small toy models made of plasticine. Well, the span of the bridge cannot weigh six thousand tons! Where did such a technique come from in the backward "rashka", which crumbles before the eyes of the patriots? Here we have a completely different matter. The President opened a bridge in Izyum (Kharkiv region). The wonders of technology. Previously, he could withstand a load of ten tons. After applying modern methods of welding micro-seams under anesthesia, the bridge is able to withstand three times more without even grimacing. Thirty tons! Thirty, Carl! Everyone I asked had an overwhelming sense of pride in the technological power of our European Motherland. Our response to the Kremlin's propaganda is staggering in its sheer force. While they are playing games at Mosfilm, the Supreme Commander-in-Chief opens hundreds of ultra-modern schools, six- and in some places even eight-lane autobahns, the pits on which are filled up according to a special, patriotic technology. What, Kremlin “cotton wool”, are you scared?”

Combat swimmers at the Donetsk airport, the patriotic technology of filling pits and finally welding the bridge under anesthesia... It is obvious that the text is satirical. The author, a pro-Kremlin Kyiv publicist Alexander Zubchenko, openly mocked those who spoke about the impossibility of building a bridge, bringing their position to the point of absurdity.

But, apparently, there is no need to joke with Russian propagandists - they take any grotesque at face value. And after them, the Minister of Education, and with his filing, Putin himself.

Zubchenko's idea - a comic effect based on the deliberately absurd assertion that a real object does not exist - is not so new. Perhaps he was based on the meme about the “Bielefeld conspiracy”, which was popular in Germany at the time. In 1994, student Achim Held, parodying supporters of conspiracy theories, published a post on the Internet stating that the city of Bielefeld in North Rhine-Westphalia does not actually exist, since the reader is unlikely to find among his acquaintances a resident of this city or someone who ever been in it. The city is relatively small, there are no special attractions in it, except for a rather large university, so for many readers the “argument” worked.

Even Angela Merkel paid tribute to the “Bielefeld conspiracy”, who at one of the official events, mentioning Bielefeld, added : “if it exists”, then, just in case, explaining that she was in this city. The meme was so popular that everyone understood the chancellor's joke.

But for some reason, neither the Minister of Education nor the head of state, who would not treat such a theory as a joke, was found in Germany.


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