If perception is reality, then the Russian population would assume that the downing of Malaysia Airlines MH17 was the work of the Ukrainians — with the help of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, or vice versa. Just one day after the horrific tragedy that left 298 people dead, Russia's Channel One ran a package telling its audience that the entire incident was orchestrated by the United States, specifically by the CIA. A document was broadcast purportedly showing that the U.S. was planning to do the same thing during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.
Viewers learned that the "U.S. orchestrated this because Ukrainian government is not sophisticated enough to orchestrate this," according to the broadcast, which was translated from the original Russian by CNBC. According to Channel One, Russia's swift economic growth has inspired the United States to try to damage Russia's economy.
The government of Russian President Vladimir Putin financially supports and editorially controls a domestic media machine that has become reminiscent of the Soviet propaganda machine, and the former KGB agent has shut down most independent news channels that may stray from the Kremlin line.
First published July 21 2014, 12:30 PM