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Analysed 2,625 tweets, tweets from the last 384 weeks.
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Last 50 tweets from @TimothyDSnyder
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Russian military bloggers themselves refer to forced mobilization on the occupied territories as "mogilizatsiia," могилизация, a play on words meaning "forced mobilization to the grave." 15/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
That is the meaning of the "referenda" for Russians: могилизация, forced mobilization to the grave. 16/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
This could be soon, as most of the men of fighting age in the territories affected by the "referenda" have either fled to free Ukraine or have already been forcibly mobilized and killed. 14/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Russian military bloggers themselves refer to forced mobilization on the occupied territories as "mogilizatsiia," могилизация, a play on words meaning "forced mobilization to the grave." 15/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Having established the principle of forced mobilization on its "new territories," Russian authorities will presumably move on to adjacent Russian territories. 13/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
This could be soon, as most of the men of fighting age in the territories affected by the "referenda" have either fled to free Ukraine or have already been forcibly mobilized and killed. 14/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
With no formal announcement, the Russian army will be forcibly mobilizing Russian citizens. The social contract will be broken, without anyone saying so. 12/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Having established the principle of forced mobilization on its "new territories," Russian authorities will presumably move on to adjacent Russian territories. 13/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
At the moment, the Russian army forcibly mobilizes Ukrainian citizens in the occupied territories. After the faked "referenda" in these regions, the Russian government will declare that these people are its citizens – and continue to forcibly mobilize them. 11/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
With no formal announcement, the Russian army will be forcibly mobilizing Russian citizens. The social contract will be broken, without anyone saying so. 12/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
As Russians cheer on the "referenda," what they are actually supporting is the forced mobilization of Russian citizens for war in Ukraine. How so? 10/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
At the moment, the Russian army forcibly mobilizes Ukrainian citizens in the occupied territories. After the faked "referenda" in these regions, the Russian government will declare that these people are its citizens – and continue to forcibly mobilize them. 11/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Russian domestic propaganda will do the following to Russians: it will insist that the "referenda" are real, and the evil West is mouthing its usual hypocrisy. The us-them story will hide the reality of Russians oppressing Russians. 9/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
As Russians cheer on the "referenda," what they are actually supporting is the forced mobilization of Russian citizens for war in Ukraine. How so? 10/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Thus the Russian state relies on quiet initiatives that do not look like mobilization, but which amount to mobilization. The "referenda" are the latest move in that direction, but Russians are expected not to see this in time. 8/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Russian domestic propaganda will do the following to Russians: it will insist that the "referenda" are real, and the evil West is mouthing its usual hypocrisy. The us-them story will hide the reality of Russians oppressing Russians. 9/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin cannot announce a general mobilization, since that would be an admission that he is losing the war. It would too overtly break the social contract according to which the poor, the Asians, and forcibly mobilized Ukrainians do the dying. 7/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Thus the Russian state relies on quiet initiatives that do not look like mobilization, but which amount to mobilization. The "referenda" are the latest move in that direction, but Russians are expected not to see this in time. 8/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The "referenda" will only have meaning in one place: Russia itself. And what will that meaning be? That the televised spectacle of war is coming to an end, and that more Russians will soon see war at first-hand. 6/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin cannot announce a general mobilization, since that would be an admission that he is losing the war. It would too overtly break the social contract according to which the poor, the Asians, and forcibly mobilized Ukrainians do the dying. 7/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
No one in Ukraine will take the fake "referenda" seriously, except as one more element of Russia's illegal war of aggression. The "referenda" will violate international law so obviously that no one abroad will take them seriously either. 5/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
The "referenda" will only have meaning in one place: Russia itself. And what will that meaning be? That the televised spectacle of war is coming to an end, and that more Russians will soon see war at first-hand. 6/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
These "referenda" are a traditional element of Moscow's illegal annexations. The USSR did the same in 1939 after it invaded Poland. Following the faked results was a large-scale forced mobilization of Polish citizens to the Red Army as "Soviet citizens." (hold that thought) 4/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
No one in Ukraine will take the fake "referenda" seriously, except as one more element of Russia's illegal war of aggression. The "referenda" will violate international law so obviously that no one abroad will take them seriously either. 5/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The spectacle they will soon be presented on television is that of "referenda" on the territories of Ukraine that Russia occupies. Although Russians may not realize this, the "referenda" are really about them. 3/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
These "referenda" are a traditional element of Moscow's illegal annexations. The USSR did the same in 1939 after it invaded Poland. Following the faked results was a large-scale forced mobilization of Polish citizens to the Red Army as "Soviet citizens." (hold that thought) 4/16
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Until now there has been no forced mobilization of Russian citizens to fight in Ukraine. Instead, Russian citizens (unless they are Asian or poor) generally watch the war on television. 2/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
The spectacle they will soon be presented on television is that of "referenda" on the territories of Ukraine that Russia occupies. Although Russians may not realize this, the "referenda" are really about them. 3/16
 
Often imperialist expansion turns quickly against those who enjoy it. A good example of this is on display in the Russo-Ukrainian war in the form of Russia's plan to fake "referenda" on joining Russia in the occupied Ukrainian territories. 1/16
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Until now there has been no forced mobilization of Russian citizens to fight in Ukraine. Instead, Russian citizens (unless they are Asian or poor) generally watch the war on television. 2/16
 
Often imperialist expansion turns quickly against those who enjoy it. A good example of this is on display in the Russo-Ukrainian war in the form of Russia's plan to fake "referenda" on joining Russia in the occupied Ukrainian territories. 1/16
 
This excellent thread on best practices in understanding the war in Ukraine is as valuable and as necessary as it was 3 months ago, when published.
Long thread.

Having read many articles in Western media and observed twitterati-led debates both during the run-up to the invasion and from February 24 onwards, I would like to make some critical points about blind spots that frequently prevent us from correctly assessing (1/30)
 
Reporting from David Patrikarakos on the Russian occupation of Kherson. mol.im/a/11086027
 
Olenivka, a Russian concentration camp that became a Russian death camp. Important reporting from Luke Harding. theguardian.com/world/2022/aug…
 
Media coverage in times of crises: Lessons from the past and ideas for tomorrow. With a focus on Russia's politics of hunger, past and present.
youtu.be/ktgxxFm_aII
 
 
 
 
Russian propaganda has largely given up on the three "N"s of Nazis, nukes and NATO. Its propagandists have had more success with the idea that Ukraine somehow can't win, or that the war could be somehow brought to an end if the West stopped sending weapons snyder.substack.com/p/the-state-of…
The State of the Russo-Ukrainian War
snyder.substack.com
 
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Because the Russian system denies the possibility of democracy, or free elections, or civil society, or journalism, all of these things must be defined, when they appear, as fake, alien or somehow hypocritical. snyder.substack.com/p/self-rule-an…
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
I believe Ukraine will win this war, on the basis of seven factors that tend to decide the form of armed conflicts: time, economics, logistics, landscape, mode of combat, ethos, and strategy (the TELLMES). The wild card is international public opinion. snyder.substack.com/p/the-state-of…
The State of the Russo-Ukrainian War
snyder.substack.com
 
"Nazis," "nukes," and "NATO" have been Putin's three "N"s from the beginning of the war. His three propaganda slogans emerge as excuses for the war because they summon Russian fears that can be usefully directed outward, against the rest of the world.
snyder.substack.com/p/nazis-nukes-…
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Because the Russian system denies the possibility of democracy, or free elections, or civil society, or journalism, all of these things must be defined, when they appear, as fake, alien or somehow hypocritical. snyder.substack.com/p/self-rule-an…
Self-Rule and Survival
snyder.substack.com
 
"Nazis," "nukes," and "NATO" have been Putin's three "N"s from the beginning of the war. His three propaganda slogans emerge as excuses for the war because they summon Russian fears that can be usefully directed outward, against the rest of the world.
snyder.substack.com/p/nazis-nukes-…
Nazis, Nukes, and NATO
snyder.substack.com
 
Russia's deliberate destruction of the Ukrainian publishing industry is part of a larger campaign to eliminate a whole culture.
In reply to @daryna_antoniuk
Here are some numbers (as of April): ▪️95% – a drop in book sales (today the number is higher) ▪️28% of publishing houses cannot pay salaries ▪️22% of bookstores and warehouses were damaged by Russian rockets ▪️10% of publishing houses have suspended their work
 
Russian occupiers treat "basic loyalty to the state" as grounds for the torture and execution of Ukrainians. More indispensable reporting from @ngumenyuk rollingstone.com/politics/polit…
We Need to Liberate Our People From the Horrors of Occupation: New Allegations of Russian War Crimes Emerge in Ukraine
rollingstone.com
 
"Putin's power is based upon an image; by choosing to fight an actual war, he has made illusion hostage to reality."
snyder.substack.com/p/putins-rule-…
Putin's rule is weakening
snyder.substack.com
 
 
Russian propaganda has largely given up on the three "N"s of Nazis, nukes and NATO. Its propagandists have had more success with the idea that Ukraine somehow can't win, or that the war could be somehow brought to an end if the West stopped sending weapons
snyder.substack.com/p/the-state-of…
The State of the Russo-Ukrainian War
snyder.substack.com
 
 
A conversation from July 2021:
Luc Tuymans x Timothy Snyder: a conversation about the slippery slope from Donald Trump’s lies to the extinction of American democracy—and art’s ability to break through fascist monoliths.

Listen now: zwrnr.art/podcastS5E09

#Podcast illustration by Tracy Ma/Placement Studio pic.twitter.com/y1e4AiJQwy
 
I believe Ukraine will win this war, on the basis of seven factors that tend to decide the form of armed conflicts: time, economics, logistics, landscape, mode of combat, ethos, and strategy (the TELLMES). The wild card is international public opinion.
snyder.substack.com/p/the-state-of…
The State of the Russo-Ukrainian War
snyder.substack.com
 
 
Because the Russian system denies the possibility of democracy, or free elections, or civil society, or journalism, all of these things must be defined, when they appear, as fake, alien or somehow hypocritical.
snyder.substack.com/p/self-rule-an…
Self-Rule and Survival
snyder.substack.com
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin's gamble, as ever, is that the West will feel the pain faster than he will. This is how his foreign policy works: generate losses for everyone, including Russia, in the hope that the other side will concede first. 27/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin has seemed like a good gambler in the past. A good gambler, though, knows when to fold. 28/28
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
It is not clear how Putin can escape, except by declaring victory. 26/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin's gamble, as ever, is that the West will feel the pain faster than he will. This is how his foreign policy works: generate losses for everyone, including Russia, in the hope that the other side will concede first. 27/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The trap presented to Putin by rivals, by the public, by the army looks like this: we will all agree with you that we are winning the war, and we will all blame you when if we lose it. This is all clouded by emotion, displacement, and fear. But this is the general picture. 25/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
It is not clear how Putin can escape, except by declaring victory. 26/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The equilibrium that keeps Putin in power—mastery over rivals, soft support in the population, integrity of the army—is challenged by the realities of an unpredictable, costly war. Putin has been good at keeping us all in a fog. But now he himself seems lost in the fog of war 24/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
The trap presented to Putin by rivals, by the public, by the army looks like this: we will all agree with you that we are winning the war, and we will all blame you when if we lose it. This is all clouded by emotion, displacement, and fear. But this is the general picture. 25/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
So long as everyone says nationalistic things, a certain equilibrium is preserved. But this amounts to everyone bluffing everyone else. 23/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
The equilibrium that keeps Putin in power—mastery over rivals, soft support in the population, integrity of the army—is challenged by the realities of an unpredictable, costly war. Putin has been good at keeping us all in a fog. But now he himself seems lost in the fog of war 24/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The dramatic rhetoric on Russian television and on the Telegram channels of Russian leaders is thus rather a substitute for than evidence of a national consensus about the war. 22/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
So long as everyone says nationalistic things, a certain equilibrium is preserved. But this amounts to everyone bluffing everyone else. 23/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin has soft support for the war, so long as it is a television show, but cannot count on Russians to risk their actual bodies. 21/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
The dramatic rhetoric on Russian television and on the Telegram channels of Russian leaders is thus rather a substitute for than evidence of a national consensus about the war. 22/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The old communist joke went "we pretend to work and you pretend to pay us." In Russia today the reality is something more like "you pretend to win a war and we pretend to show enthusiasm." 20/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin has soft support for the war, so long as it is a television show, but cannot count on Russians to risk their actual bodies. 21/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The Russian state looks fascist at the top, but it lacks the fascist capacity for total war. It has governed thus far by the demobilization of its population, not its mobilization. 19/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
The old communist joke went "we pretend to work and you pretend to pay us." In Russia today the reality is something more like "you pretend to win a war and we pretend to show enthusiasm." 20/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin is clearly afraid that a general mobilization would undo his popularity and bring down his regime. In this sense he is weak. 18/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
The Russian state looks fascist at the top, but it lacks the fascist capacity for total war. It has governed thus far by the demobilization of its population, not its mobilization. 19/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
Russian regions are now working hard to find highly-paid "volunteers" who are sent to die with little training. 17/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Putin is clearly afraid that a general mobilization would undo his popularity and bring down his regime. In this sense he is weak. 18/
 
In reply to @TimothyDSnyder
The Russian army is also taking horrible losses in men, which suggests the next sign of Putin's weakness. The Russian state can mobilize its population for war only at the level of emotions, not bodies. 16/
Replying to @TimothyDSnyder
Russian regions are now working hard to find highly-paid "volunteers" who are sent to die with little training. 17/
 
 
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