The Cold War Lives in RT’s Comments Section

Opinions about events beyond our borders.
March 6 2014 12:15 PM

Cold War Trolls

The East-West standoff is alive and well in RT’s comment section.

140306_FOR_RTLizWahl
Former RT anchor Liz Wahl

Screengrab via RT

The Cold War had almost everything—two superpowers facing off in an existential struggle, spies, double agents and honey traps, lots of great books and movies. But in retrospect it was missing one important element of modern life: Internet comments.

Andy Bowers Andy Bowers
Andy Bowers is the executive producer of Slate podcasts and a former Moscow bureau chief for NPR.

Thanks to Cold War II, unfolding in Ukraine as we speak, and the handy website of the Moscow-funded TV channel RT (formerly Russia Today), that oversight has now been remedied. RT recently had two high-profile on-air defections (another word that had more cultural resonance in the good old days). I went to the RT site to see whether Larry King, who has two shows on the channel, had also quit over Russia’s actions in Ukraine or was continuing to rent his modest reputation to the Kremlin. (He’s still there!) But I stayed for the fascinating propaganda:

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It’s basically Pravda Lite—less vitriolic than the old days, but still a firm party line. There are exposés of Western duplicity and an ad for a free book called Midnight in the American Empire. But the comment threads seem to be open to actual dissenting opinions. Unleash the Cold War trolls!

The majority of comments seem to be in line with RT’s slant—pro-Putin, anti-American, and anti-European Union:

MrFancyg 04.03.2014 18:53
Obama+EU=Hitler
WISTLEBLOWER2 05.03.2014 21:04
yes EU didn't like the president so they hired thugs to remove him - they actually said a different president would sign! European values, any thuggery for the deal to go through!
Alex Stanislavsky 04.03.2014 03:32
Make no mistake about this “revolution”: this bloodshed was initiated by US/EU to colonize Ukraine and drug it into modern-day slavery called austerity.
argel 06.03.2014 05:42
Bravo Lavrov
Bravo Putin
Stupid European politicians
Stupid Merkel
Patrick Ryan 06.03.2014 02:46
OBAMA IS A JUNKIE > LIKES LITTLE BOYS .
John-Henry 06.03.2014 00:56
John Kerry is SO STUPID that he once got lost in a forest with only one tree!

A smaller number of pro-Western posters are trying to stir the pot, with varying degrees of sophistication:

GROPENOTMOAN 05.03.2014 22:12
Russians are such hypocrites. They babble about the supposed Ukrainian links to Nazis while thy had AN ALLIANCE with Hitler.
giclee studios 05.03.2014 21:54
rUCK Fussia!

There are truthers:

TruthIsNeverTooHorrible 06.03.2014 02:25
the real coup was before 2014.
Putin and Yanukovich killed and replaced with doubles, same as Prince William and Harry.
"Pus y Riot jailed for desecrating a holy place" is completely staged with actors, part of the same illuminati theater as "anti-gay propaganda laws", to divert from Putin's replacement.

VLADIMIR PUTIN, wife, daughters killed 2010 and replaced with doubles: Illuminati greatest coup in Armageddon

And talk about a flame war! Check out where this one ends up:

Natalia Metrowich 05.03.2014 23:22
Goodnight everyone, catch up tomorrow if Putin doesn't lose his head and start chucking Nukes around.
Chris Phillips 05.03.2014 23:31
You must be a medically certified moron - why would Putin start a major war let alone nukes?
And why am I trying to have a conversation with an idiot...
Natalia Metrowich 05.03.2014 23:36
Who test fired a ballistic missile yesterday you idiot???

You see, this is why RT is used by us just for a laugh. We don't get this on CNN, SKY, BBC etc.
Count Cash 05.03.2014 23:49
Natalia be careful, things can go boom in the night!
Rostislav Babiak 05.03.2014 23:56
Nuclear bombs go boom in the night. Imagine sunrise in America at 1am in the morning. Talk about white nights...yikes.

Hilarious! And the nuke trash talk doesn’t end there:

Chris Switzer 06.03.2014 05:17
… RT is run by the Russian FSB full influence. And direct orders from Putin to spread misinformation. If you idiots actually believe what you are fed then you all deserve your future. Burning in a nuclear cloud.

Of course if all the nuclear holocaust banter gets to be a drag, you’ll find lots of exciting opportunities to work from home in your spare time …

Cynthia J. George 06.03.2014 02:46
my roomate's mother makes<$81> /on the internet . She has been fired for eight months but last month her pay was <$14405> just working on the internet for a few hours.

… as well as appropriately-themed wry commentary on the spam.

John-Henry 05.03.2014 23:50
My best friend's DOG, "Woofy", makes <$44> BILLION dollars per HOUR on the internet as a HACKER and PROPAGANDIST for the CIA, working in conjunction with the NSA, MI6, the European Union and JP Morgan-Chase. YOU, too, can get your PAWS on some of this money!

To apply, simply call: Catherine Ashton at the EU in Brussels or Vitoria Nuland (at the United States Department of State).

Andy Bowers is the executive producer of Slate podcasts and a former Moscow bureau chief for NPR.

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