The U.S. military officials have concerned the spike in pro-Russian sentiment among the households of military members.
More than 1,000 U.S. adults responded between Oct. 24 and Oct. 30, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points to the second annual national defense survey conducted by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute. Almost 46% of the households of military members viewed Russia as an ally even considering the increase in tension between the two countries.
The Voice of America has reported that while a majority, 71% of all Americans and 53% of military households, still views Russia as an enemy, the spike in pro-Russian sentiment has defense officials concerned.
“There is an effort, on the part of Russia, to flood the media with disinformation to sow doubt and confusion,” Defense Department spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Carla Gleason told VOA.
“This is not only through discordant and inflammatory dialogue but through false narratives designed to elicit sympathetic views,” she said, adding, “we are actively working to expose and counter Russian disinformation whenever possible.”
The Deutsche Welle reported that in order to manipulate public discussions, especially in times of elections or referendums, information providers controlled by the Kremlin have purposefully disseminated disinformation, extremely hyperpartisan news and populist narratives. This is not an extension of pluralism of opinion through balanced and objective information that is acceptable in the sense of a free public sphere, but rather illegitimate interference.
These novel disinformation campaigns exploit the increased information overload experienced by people in the digital world. They flood the information space with a multitude of lies, half-truths or absurd news.
A report prepared for the Senate that provides the most sweeping analysis yet of Russia’s disinformation campaign around the 2016 election found the Russian propaganda uses every major social media platform to deliver words, images and videos tailored to users’ interests to influence they.