ANATOMY OF PROPAGANDA: TOP 3 EVENTS OF THE WEEK
State propaganda focused on supporting Putin's messages about positive economic trends during the reporting period, resolving the conflict regarding the construction of a mosque in Moscow, and again frightening Russians with "biological weapons."
Confirming Putin's statements about stabilising the Russian economy, Rosstat and the Ministry of Finance published quite an optimistic data. Rosstat confirmed the estimate of a 2.1% decline in GDP in 2022 (it is worth noting that the Central Bank indicated 2.5%, and the Ministry of Economic Development - 2.7%). Consecutively, the Ministry of Finance claims that the budget deficit in the first quarter was only 2.4 trillion rubles (although according to the data of the "Electronic Budget" website, the budget deficit as of March 28 exceeded 4 trillion rubles). Several experts have suggested that the data from government agencies is tailored to fit the Kremlin’s ideological demands.
The Kremlin is seeking to set a compromise in the conflict about the mosque in Moscow, the construction of which nearly led to clashes between radicals. The mayor of Moscow announced that the mosque would not be built near the Holy Lake, however it would be allocated at a different site. The Kremlin carried out a special operation to resolve this issue. Responsibility was lowered to the level of the city government, and the authorship of the compromise option was attributed to the spiritual leaders of both sides. To ensure a complete de-escalation, Kadyrov thanked Sobyanin "for resolving the issue."
Myths about "bio-laboratories" are back to broadcasting in Russia. Russian propaganda keeps generating unsubstantiated conspiracy theories for its domestic audience, compensating for the lack of clear reasons and goals for the war with Ukraine. The Russian Ministry of Defense held a briefing by the chief scientist of CBRN , who announced that some current mandatory meetings in Warsaw are doing researches of a dual nature. The Ministry of Defense warned that under the guise of these meetings, "preparation of provocations with biological weapons" may be carried out.