Elmar Brok is an unknown quantity to many, but one of the most powerful figures in Europe at the same time. The current Chairman of the European Parliament Committee on Foreign Affairs, he is also one of the shadowy elites wielding massive power. His role as former Senior Vice President for Media Development for the massive media conglomerate Bertelsmann resonates sharply today. Last week’s EU Parliamentary votes on a resolution on the “EU strategic communication”, and on the so-called “EU Army” resolution bear Brock’s emblem. What you are about to read will reveal two horns of a well planned strategy of divisiveness in Brussels.
I was once again amazed when I first read the reports on this “EU Counterpropaganda” machine being considered by Brussels. But, even before this press release from the EU, our research teams keyed on the concerns of Margarita Simonyan, Editor-in-chief of RT and Rossiya Segodnya via myriad social and traditional media outlets. So, last Monday when the European Parliament voted in favor of the resolution on countering Russian media outlets like Sputnik news agency and RT broadcasting, I was disheartened we in independent media had not acted sooner. The final vote for “censoring” unwanted messages was 304 in favor the document, 179 voted against and 208 abstaining. For those unfamiliar with the resolution, it was Elmar Bock who ushered in this congealed media monstrosity in the making. The wording of the early document drafts is telling of deeper intent:
“The European Parliament … acknowledges that Russia is using in an aggressive manner, a wide range of tools and instruments for the columns, including special foundations (Russki Mir), multi-language TV channels (Russia Today, RIA Novosti), news agencies (Sputnik), social and religious groups (including the Orthodox Church), social media, and trolls on the Internet, in order to make Western values into question, in Europe, to win domestic support and to bring in the countries of the Eastern neighborhood of the EU the impression that as were their state structures prior to the resolution.“
Russian President Vladimir Putin condemned the EU Parliamentary decisions but expressed moderation with his hope that common sense would prevail. Despite Mr. Putin’s guarded optimism though, signs the EU is censoring dissenting views are already on the wall according to Italian journalist Giulietto Chiesa, who told Sputnik :
“The Reporters Without Borders (RSF) organization, which said it would not give interviews to the Russian media group Rossiya Segodnya, is violating a code of ethics.”
It is disturbing indeed finding out years of planning has gone in to the creation of these initiatives, and by the likes of those nicknamed “Mr. Bertelsmann”, and etc. In addition, and of even more concern is the second “horn” of a potential European beast.
While in Athens last week I was contacted to discuss the perils of the EU defense union that MPs voted in last Tuesday in Strasbourg with RT TV’s Rory Suchet. His points, and those of citizens RT was interviewing on the streets, were mirrored in demonstrations at the time of my visit to Athens over further austerity for Greeks. But costs and hardships of citizens aside, the Brok Manifestos, if I may call them that, foretell of a far more deadly reality.
Brok, who is also the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the European Endowment for Democracy (EED), was a key figure I portrayed in a much earlier report on this EU Counter-Propaganda arm. Now that the vote in the EU Parliament is secured, a range of experts are discussing the implications. One such expert, Ukip MEP Mike Hookem thinks the legislation will put an end to freedom of speech, and perhaps even usher in a kind of martial law – and possibly an end to the Brexit as well. Hookem was quoted by the Sunday Express as saying:
“It is an attack on free speech and because its from a place like this an attack on those who will pause the EU project.“
While the trend and the German political rhetoric seems aimed at using Trump’s NATO stance, and Mr. Putin’s alleged aggression in order to justify these initiatives, the facts point to much longer ranged planning for these dangerous instruments. We find the roots of these Brok imperitives engrained in the supposedly non-governmental EED, and its linkages to other key institutions. This report, cited by my colleague Holger Eekhof in his cautionary reports, is proof enough Mr. Trump, nor Mr. Putin hold any sway where EU expansion is concerned. Dated March 16, 2015, the report tells us all we need to know about this legislation, Mr. Brok, and the EED. If I may briefly quote:
“Jerzy Pomianowski, the endowment’s (EED) executive director, explains how the war in Ukraine, Russia’s clampdown on the media, and the Kremlin’s sophisticated propaganda machine are giving the EED a new sense of focus. Central to that focus is the question of how to strengthen democracy beyond the EU’s neighborhood—including in Russia.”
Pomianowski is either not very smart, or he is as arrogant and empowered as Elmar Brok and his colleagues in America if we look at his assertions. The man makes no bones whatsoever about insisting on EU media and policy intervention within Russia, which is just what Brussels Parliamentarians voted to put a stop to within Europe. In another case of hypocritical geo-strategy PR, Brok’s stooges in the EU Parliament have rubber stamped a form of media-counterinsurgency. Carnegie Europe asked Pomianowski about the “modus operandi” for EED’s initiatives in Russia, to which he replied:
“We apply the same methodology that we apply in other hostile environments. We have to be very discrete. We have to be cautious not to expose our partners—the people we work with outside Russia but who provide support inside the country. There are many avenues we can pursue, but progress cannot be achieved overnight.”
So what the people of nations face today is essentially what I elaborated for Rory Suchet in the Athens RT interview bears retelling here. Western leadership is now completely detached from their citizen constituency. Suchet aptly called “war a racket”, which given what we’ve seen in Libya, Syria, and in Ukraine bears up under scrutiny. Elmar Brok’s part in developing the counter-concept of “fake news”, and Mr. Pomianowski’s condemnation of Russia for supposedly creating “false ideas” for European citizens, are reminiscent of another dark era in human history. Russia as the resident evil of Europe, dissenting ideas being the real “enemy”, this is pure Nazi methodology.
Media control, the eventual power to institute marital law or to dictate war, a concerted effort to build up aggressively against a foe that has only reacted to the advance of NATO and the EU on her borders, we are witnessing a behavior only the Third and Fourth Nazi Reich could institute. Adolph Hitler re-expanded Germany and its influence by first rearming, then by fist propagandizing Austria, and then occupying the country. Next the Czechoslovak state fell, followed by the eventual invasion of Poland and World War II. There is no need to micro-analyze history here, as we once again see the feverish leadership of Europe, able and willing to deceive and countermand its citizenry, marching into aggression with Russia. For Mr. Brok’s part I can only excuse him for not being alone. We already are aware of Bertelsmann’s and Axel Spring’s role alongside the Merkel government in media control, and Brok’s colleagues at the European Endowment for Democracy represent a great supportive cast.
I’ll characterize and elaborate further on all the players in a later report. For now it is sufficient that the reader to understand that Elmar Brok, the people behind him, are the same people that control Chancellor Angela Merkel. Fears of a Trump presidency resonated with the same need for American “understanding” Europe we heard weeks later from both Angela Merkel and Barack Obama. Read this Deutsche Welle piece for yourself.
Phil Butler, is a policy investigator and analyst, a political scientist and expert on Eastern Europe, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.