Shadowy Pro-Moscow Group Announces Conference To Undermine Alternative Post-Russia Meetings – OpEd


Gandhi reputedly said that first the opponents of movements ignore the latter, then they laugh at them, then they attack them, and finally they surrender to them. The Indian leader’s comment can be updated for Putin’s Russia: first, it ignores such movements; then it attacks them; and then it organizes meetings in parallel to undermine such groups.

The Russian authorities do this because they understand that Western journalists will report both out of a conviction that truth will somehow emerge from the inclusion of both even if one of them is wholly organized as a propaganda effort by one side. Indeed, Moscow likely expects that Western journalists will go further and speculate on who is behind the other as well.

That is precisely what is happening now. The Free Nations of PostRussia have scheduled a series of meetings in the United States April 25 to 28 – full disclosure: the author of these lines is one of the speakers – and so to achieve Moscow’s goals, something called the International Russian Council has scheduled a meeting nominally on the same subject just after that.

 The IRC meeting is entitled “Decolonization of the Russian Federation: New Challenges and Perspectives” and is set to be held in an unknown Turkish city sometime in early May (деколонизация-российской-федерации/). The journalists of the IdelReal portal have investigated and concluded that this is a fake announcement (

The IdelReal analysis is compelling, but now the IRC has issued a rejoinder suggesting that while its initial announcement may have been a kind of fishing, the group now wants to go ahead, almost certainly on Moscow’s orders, to hold a meeting to achieve the Kremlin’s aims (опровержение/).

Those tempted to fall into their trap should be aware of what is going on

Paul Goble

Paul Goble is a longtime specialist on ethnic and religious questions in Eurasia. Most recently, he was director of research and publications at the Azerbaijan Diplomatic Academy. Earlier, he served as vice dean for the social sciences and humanities at Audentes University in Tallinn and a senior research associate at the EuroCollege of the University of Tartu in Estonia. He has served in various capacities in the U.S. State Department, the Central Intelligence Agency and the International Broadcasting Bureau as well as at the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Mr. Goble maintains the Window on Eurasia blog and can be contacted directly at [email protected] .

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