This paper provides an analysis of 25 research studies on military propaganda indexed in the Web of Science database and published in the period 2004–2019, i.e. in the 21st century. The materials were systematized by year, publication venue, and research subject matter.
The author draws the conclusion that in the early modern period military propaganda was employed mainly in times of revolutions and wars of independence. This may be explained by the fact that the period’s armies did not have the institution of military propagandists in place yet. It was only as late as the Crimean War that mass media were first used to shape public opinion among the populations of the countries at war.
In the modern period, the role of military propaganda grew significantly, with military propagandists getting set apart into a special military unit. In a time of war, mass media were subordinate to the local administration, which made it possible to create the conditions for keeping public opinion steady and preventing the “war weariness” phenomenon.
The development of digital technology and the Internet has facilitated communication among terrorist communities significantly. This has given researchers reason to explore the nature and manifestations of terrorist activity and seek out ways to counteract it. In the contemporary period, military propaganda is finding manifestation in terrorist activity, hybrid wars, and states’ activity on countering domestic and international threats.
Political system of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth implied active participation of the nobility in the political life of the state. Literature was widely used to disseminate and popularize certain ideas. In particular, in the political literature one can find colorful descriptions of the main foreign policy enemies of the state, i.e. the Ottoman Empire and the Crimean Khanate. The article is devoted to the description of the Turks and the Tatars in the works of Polish poet and translator Marcin Paszkowski “Dzieie tvreckie y utarczki kozackie z Tatary”. The author created one of the first encyclopedias of Turkish life and traditions, describing them vividly in his work. At the same time, describing the Turks and the Tatars, Marcin Paszkowski used epithets that had a hidden meaning, but were clear to the readers of the time. Thus, the author called the Turks and the Tatars dogs and wolves. These animals were associated with the chthonic world and had mostly negative connotations. The Tatars were described as ugly people, since the outer ugliness was associated with the inner ugliness. Description of the Turks as homosexuals has Biblical roots. Since in Christianity such sexual orientation was considered sinful, this way the author was emphasizing the sinfulness of the Turks in general. Paszkowski was stressing that the Tatars did not eat bread and wine, which was not true. But for a Christian reader it was an understandable hint that the Tatars were not part of the Christian world. Political theory accuses the Turks of having no law in their state, just the right of the Sultan only.
This paper looks into the organization of military propaganda in the Russian Imperial Navy in the period 1914-1915. The author examines the rivalry in hostile propaganda between Russia and Germany during World War I in the Baltic and Black Sea theaters of military operations. The paper describes some of the key propaganda techniques employed by the nations of the Entente and those of the Triple Alliance; explores the rivalry in hostile propaganda between the Ottoman Empire and the Russian Empire; discusses the attitude toward World War I among the Navy's lower ranks and officers; provides an insight into the rationale behind patriotic sentiment among the personnel of the Russian Imperial Navy during the initial period of World War I; examines the role of Emperor Nicholas II and the State Duma in Russia’s propaganda campaigns in its World War I fleet; illustrates how advantage was taken of the feats of clergymen, sailors, and officers in the Russian navy for propaganda purposes. Using specific examples from popular publications of the World War I period, the author touches upon how the media in pre-revolutionary Russia exploited the atrocities committed against the civilian population by Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Turkey to spread military propaganda among the personnel of the Russian Imperial Navy. At the end of the paper, the author summarizes the key characteristics and principles of the organization of military propaganda in the Russian Imperial Navy in the period 1914–1915.
The article analyzes the reasons and methods of forming Armenian vigilante units as part of the Russian Army in the World War I in the Caucasian Front. It is emphasized that according to the plan of the Caucasus Corps Command, Armenian vigilante units should have been not just auxiliary units of the Russian Army that were familiar with the area, providing all possible assistance to the troops, but they also had to resolve issues independently where it would have been impossible to use the Caucasus Corps Units for political or other reasons. Among other things, they were charged with maintaining order in the territory of Turkish Armenia after the victory and the transfer of Russian military units to other fronts. The article also provides detailed information about the combat training arrangements of these units.
This paper addresses the effect of the legal press on the national-cultural life of Chernihivshchyna during the period of German occupation (1941–1943), as well as its significance for the local population in tough wartime conditions. The author researched the major newspapers that shaped public opinion in the region at the time. In researching the press, the author identified some of the key areas linked to deploying a new ideology – and, as a consequence, a new worldview – in society (e.g., anti-Semitic agitation, all-out criticism of the Soviet system, touting the delights of living in Germany, stimulating relocation to Germany for work, etc.). To this day, there remains open the issue of the locals’ real attitude toward the occupiers, as well as the reasons behind the local population’s active collaboration with the Germans. For the most part, this was associated with some of the locals having had a problem with the law during the pre-war period, some having fallen victim to Stalin's repressions, some having been variously oppressed by Soviet power, some just trying to survive in tough wartime conditions, etc. It is also important to note that a nascent hope was kindled among the locals that with support from the German leadership it would be possible to have an independent Ukraine. Up until a certain point, the Fascists were tolerant of the unfolding Ukrainization process in the occupied areas (e.g., use of the Ukrainian language in the media and in the cultural-enlightenment sector; coverage of nationalist ideas and slogans; establishment of clubs, theaters, and schools; preferential treatment in employment based on ethnicity).
Thus, the activity of a major portion of Ukrainian newspapers during the occupation period was of a propagandist nature. The most welcome topics to hear about included news about events at the front, victories won by German troops, support for the ideas of Fascism, and agitation for cultural-artistic and awareness-raising activity, which, where done properly, was instrumental in heightening the Ukrainians’ sense of national consciousness. This type of source has proven to help gain a deeper insight into the prevailing sentiment of society and explain the locals’ attitude toward the “new order”.
This paper addresses the use of fake documents in Rzeczpospolita’s 17th-century political discourse. The author discusses a variety of fake documents used at the time, including the following: the Sultan’s letters to the King of Rzeczpospolita, fake correspondence between the monarchs, the Sultan’s letters to the Polish gentry, and a set of false agreements related to the creation of a European Christian anti-Turkish coalition. Whomever they may have been addressed to, these documents must have had an impact on political life in the Polish-Lithuanian state and must have served to push Warsaw into war with the Ottoman Empire.
During the Crimean War, a series of patriotic texts by prominent Don writer I.S. Ul'yanov were published in The Don Military Gazette. This article represents an attempt to analyze these texts and compare them with the latest official Don Cossack propaganda. The author comes to the conclusion that I.S. Ul’yanov’s oeuvre clearly features a plotline that would later become typical for that kind of propaganda. This plotline is a panegyric for a Don hero who, rather than representing a real historical person, epitomizes an ideal Cossack, someone to whom the author ascribes some of the ideas and statements that matter to himself. Of particular mention in this respect is Ul’yanov’s work ‘Military Ingenuity’, which could qualify as a historically credible narrative but would eventually be positioned by his younger contemporaries as a literary story. Certain elements thereof were even included in the early 20th century in ‘The Pictures of the Past Quiet Don’, a book released at the behest of the military authorities which was intended to be read by those in military units and schools.
The paper discusses distinctive characteristics pertaining to military propaganda in the Workers’ and Peasants’ Red Fleet (RKKF) in the 1920s. It reviews the state of propaganda in the Red Fleet divisions and analyzes the objective difficulties related to attempts to explain the tasks and goals of the Soviet government.
The paper uses documents from the Russian State Navy Archives (St. Petersburg, Russian Federation) as research materials. In addition, materials from the brochure “How our fleet is different from the bourgeois one” by A. Krymov were utilized. Collective monographs used include “Twice Red Banner Baltic fleet”, “Red Banner Pacific Fleet”, “Red Banner Black Sea Fleet” and “Northern Fleet of Russia”.
In conclusion, the author sums up the factors that drove military propaganda efficiency among officers and sailors of the Baltic Fleet in the historical period under review. The author also provides little-known facts about the organization of propaganda activity among Soviet sailors.
This paper draws upon an analysis of various published documents, a pool of relevant Russian historiography, and materials from various mass media outlets (above all, various periodicals from the period under review) to examine the various aspects of the political-information component in the 1994–1996 Chechen military-political conflict. The author suggests that, in covering the Chechen conflict, the Russian media (above all, the nation’s print media) took different stances on the issue: some justified the activity of illegal political and military formations in Chechnya, others espoused the official position assumed by the Russian government, and still others, a rather small group, sought to cover the conflict as objectively as possible, opting to keep an open mind on the issue and eschew political bias and financial concerns. The paper examines a set of specific issues experienced by mass media at the time in covering the 1994–1996 Chechen military-political conflict. The author suggests that, judging from the process of covering the Chechen conflict, back then Russia still lacked free and independent mass media outlets committed to reflecting and protecting the interests of civil society in Russia, a direct consequence of the nation being dominated by an oligarchical system of power and a lot of its mass media outlets being run by various political forces. The paper shares the findings from an analysis of the key characteristics of media coverage of the Chechen ethno-political conflict, especially during its active hostilities phase.
Of relevance to modern military doctrine is the concept of hybrid (or proxy) warfare, i.e. a combination of conventional, irregular, and asymmetric ways of conducting war, including manipulation of political and/or ideological conflicts and engagement of special operation forces, conventional armed forces, intelligence agents, political agent provocateurs, and mass media outlets. Among the tools employed quite actively in modern proxy warfare are economic blackmail, cyber-attacks, proxy servers and surrogates, paramilitaries, and terrorist and criminal elements.