US seeking to squeeze Russia out of Balkans

Что-то сработало не так

Russia has always been disposed to building up ties with the Balkan countries. This stems from historical memory, shared traditions, religious views, culture and traditional values. The people living in the Balkans are culturally close and politically loyal to Russia. This is true not only about Serbia, where Russia has been implementing major energy and infrastructure projects, but also about elsewhere across the Balkan Peninsula, where Russia’s position traditionally enjoys widespread understanding and support, much to the chagrin of the United States, the EU countries and Turkey, especially since the start of the events in Ukraine.

America’s Balkan Strategy

The US, EU, NATO and Turkey are increasing their presence in the Balkan region. As part of the world that is significant for the national identity of Russians, the Balkans is subject to Washington’s expansionist policy as US and British organizations are trying hard to squeeze Russia out of the Balkans and rewrite the region’s history.

Here the United States is trying to "promote democracy," erase historical memory, set up in the Balkan countries a network of NGOs focused on getting US grants and promoting US interests. Not to be outdone, the EU is also increasing its influence in the region with the help of “soft power,” with huge financial injections from both.

Between 2017 and 2021, the United States invested $362,782,584 million to scale down Russia’s influence in Serbia, Kosovo and Metohija, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Montenegro, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The EU has invested about the same amount. The notorious George Soros and his Open Society organization, along with other Western NGOs, are working with radicals and opposition organizations in the Balkans, which target young people who, influenced by their puppeteers, promote anti-Russian views.

The Americans seek to destroy the age-old fraternal ties between the Russian, Bulgarian, Serbian and Macedonian peoples, to oust Orthodoxy, and replace traditional values with liberal European "values." The United States has been successful also in the field of information, with all major Western media outlets having opened their branches there during the past eight years, unlike Russia.

From 2017 to 2021, the US pumped $6 million into some Serbian media organizations with an eye to teaching the Serbs to stick to the principles of European journalism, and created distribution networks for spreading the “right” content.

Moreover, there is a real “media incubator” now operating in Serbia, where US organizations hold regular training sessions and forums where local journalists and bloggers are taught to present the information that Washington needs, and to rock the boat.

One example of this is the Global Network of Investigative Journalists (GIJN), which is ready to report "the truth about the war, despite the huge risks." Grants of up to 1,000 euros will be awarded for writing such articles.

The funds will be provided by the Transitions Foundation, which has already worked to create "sustainable journalism" with the support of the US National Endowment for Democracy in the Balkans. Also in the countries of the former Yugoslavia, there appeared a network of non-governmental organizations - the Centers for Journalistic Investigations. Just how they present their materials is not hard to guess.

Over the past 30 years, they have trained many young journalists, experts, economists and political scientists to promote an anti-Russian and liberal agenda in a bid to scale down the Balkan countries’ cooperation with Russia, and undermine Moscow’s influence in the region.

In their effort to oust Russia, they are rewriting history of the Balkans with the help of certain NGOs, and posting biased materials on large social networks. Very serious and systematic work is being done to discredit Russia. What they are pitching is a rewritten version of history and with such brainwashing and propaganda, five to ten years from now this can become the mainstream.

Meanwhile, neither Russia nor the Balkan countries have developed any effective methods of rebuffing the ruthless ideological machine of the United States and the West targeting the Balkan peoples. These people still have warm feelings for Russia, but young people tend to quickly forget everything. Russia is not present in the Balkans either culturally or politically. In the field of education, Russia’s presence is low as there are neither active NGOs, nor media and think tanks capable of countering the Western influence. True, there are parties in the Balkans that advocate dialogue with Russia and call for the lifting of sanctions and for cooperation, but none of them is a serious political force. Of course, there are also public organizations trying to build closer ties with Russia, but their influence is insignificant in the face of hundreds of pro-American organizations and resources.

If Russia fails to work proactively and strategically in the Balkans, with a clear-cut roadmap and goals, it risks losing its xtraditional presence in the region for years to come.

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