Russian diplomat slams France’s policy of weaponizing social media – Reuters

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MOSCOW, October 27. /TASS/. French military doctrine on countering information attacks has sounded the alarm in Moscow as it is a declaration of militarization of the information space, the spokeswoman for the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs wrote. Foreign Affairs Maria Zakharova on her Telegram channel.

“The French army, without any trace of camouflage, introduced a new doctrine to society – information influence warfare. <...> It seems that no one has yet dared to declare their intention to transform the information space into a battlefield so openly. France has almost officially adopted a course on the militarization of social networks, on the transformation of the auxiliary tools of “classic” military propaganda into a type of autonomous weapon. Considering that some experts already believe that the methods of information and propaganda in the world are comparable to weapons of mass destruction, if not in lethal force, at least in range, the declarations of Paris can only cause serious concern “, she noted.

The spokesperson recalled that on October 20, the French Minister of Defense, Florence Parly, during a conference in Paris, had declared that “the information space has become a place of strategic rivalry”. According to her, “military operations are no longer carried out in isolation from social networks since what happens there really impacts these operations”. She promised that the French armies would “monitor the digital space linked to military operations” and use methods to “confuse the adversary”. The French defense chief assured that France would apply all these measures and “strictly control them so that they are in accordance with the principles and values ​​of the country”.

The Russian diplomat noted that it is unclear whether Paris informed Big Tech that “they are now the battlegrounds, from the perspective of Western thought that values ​​freedom and pluralism above all else,” without talk about how the OSCE and human rights activists would react to this document. “Do they [the IT giants] do you intend to take all measures, including those relating to moderation parameters, to prevent disinformation campaigns and the targeting of public opinion as specifically provided for in the doctrine? .

“Now, when Liberation again publishes speculation about certain “troll factories” or when the institutions of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defense claim that the Russian media are “manipulating the facts”, we will advise our French colleagues to contact the French army for maps of “information minefields”, concluded the spokeswoman.

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