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The informational war is not so much to help Russian space exploration as to help Anatoly Perminov keep his job.
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Apr. 25, 2006
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Space Agency Declares Informational War
// On the media and the United States
Federal Space Agency head Anatoly Perminov hired a new press secretary yesterday. Col. Vyacheslav Davidenko, who had been in that position for two years, was replaced by political scientist and informational warrior Igor Panarin. Observers foresee an informational blitz ahead to improve Roscosmos' image, which has been tarnished by numerous accidents this year and last.
Gen. Col. Perminov introduced his new press secretary at a meeting of Roscosmos managers. He is 48-year-old political scientist and former special services employee Igor Panarin. He replaces 38-year-old Col. Vyacheslav Davidenko, who, before the four years he spent at Roscosmos, worked in the press service of the strategic missile forces. Davidenko has been press secretary as long as Perminov headed the space agency.

Perminov was not reachable yesterday and had not commented on why he selected a person with no connection to space exploration as his press secretary. A high-placed source at the space agency told Kommersant that, with the numerous accidents that have plagued it since June 2005, more than simple public information is needed about the space agency's activities. Rather, a counteroffensive is needed, using all the means available to the agency. Kommersant has learned that Perminov has been extremely displeased with material critical of his agency published in the media. That, apparently, is the reason for the recruitment of Panarin, who has positioned himself as a specialist in informational campaigns.

Panarin told Kommersant that his main task in his new post will be to publicize the accomplishments of Russian space exploration. It can be surmised from his previous articles and public appearances how he will bring that about. For instance, at a meeting of experts dedicated to the topic Terrorism and the Media on February 1, 2006, Panarin stated that the media are to a certain degree a catalyst for terrorism because terrorist acts of such a volume would be impossible without them. He has also said that the press induces panic in the organs of state authority and affects the public negatively.

Another important component of the new informational policy of Roscosmos may be anti-Americanism. Panarin predicted the breakup of the United States by 2010 at the Dialog of Civilizations public forum on Rhodes last October and wrote in the article The Informational War between the Euro and the Dollar that the U.S. was on the brink of an internal psychological catastrophe that will lead to its collapse. It seems that Roscosmos will now comment on delayed American shuttle flights and American difficulties creating a new spaceship in that spirit.

Independent experts have reacted critically to the new appointment. Konstantin Makienko, deputy director of the Center for Analytical and Technological Analysis, expressed doubt to Kommersant yesterday that the move would pull Roscosmos out of its systemic crisis. It is possible that the offensive operation being planned as part of informational wars will not be able to cover up the space rocket accidents hat are taking place in Russia and that will unavoidably increase in the crisis conditions, he said.
Ivan Safronov, Petr Stolyarov

All the Article in Russian as of Apr. 25, 2006

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