A look at some of the tactics the United States can use to respond to disinformation in the 21st century.
Mr. Tihonenko and Mr. Mamonov are two of the youthful faces of Current Time, America’s answer to Russia Today (RT), the Kremlin’s propaganda network. The Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), which oversees Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, has started a 24-hour Russian-language TV channel to counter the rise of RT and Sputnik, another pervasive Russian broadcaster. Viewers of Current Time in Russia proper cannot be many—it started quietly in October, and is available there only online or by satellite. No cable providers will carry it.
Mr. Bogachikhin was poking fun at the charge from Western governments, American and European, that RT is an agent of Kremlin policy and a tool directly used by President Vladimir V. Putin to undermine Western democracies — meddling in the recent American presidential election and, European security officials say, trying to do the same in the Netherlands, France and Germany, all of which vote later this year. But the West is not laughing.
Russian-sponsored rants about America get airtime in America, while U.S.-underwritten attempts to fairly and honestly inform Russians are massively curtailed. That’s not an uneven playing field; that’s our adversary owning the field and using America’s own liberality to attack U.S. policies and discredit Western values. The new administration needs to push back.