The Kremlin's winter offensive to stoke "Ukraine Fatigue"
A new report from the Centre for Information Resilience shows how Kremlin disinformation efforts coalesced around a ‘Winter offensive’ that utilises Ukraine Fatigue to encourage populations and their political leaders to reduce, or even stop, material and monetary support for Ukraine.
The fatigue following the invasion of Crimea in 2014 gave the Kremlin false hope that Ukraine Fatigue would be a foregone conclusion during the full-scale Russian invasion of February 2022. However, while "fatigue" has not gripped audiences as predicted, there are signs across Europe and beyond that narratives that could contribute to widespread Ukraine Fatigue are gaining traction.
In particular: protests of and resentment toward Ukrainian refugees are becoming more common; narratives questioning the provision of Western aid to Ukraine given its history of corruption are burgeoning; and arguments legitimising Russia’s “security concerns” are being amplified by high-profile influencers around the world.
Using a mixed methodology of a literature review, expert interviews, and social/media analysis, our new report examines Russia’s use of Ukraine Fatigue under the broader umbrella of Compassion Fatigue, including case studies where these techniques were previously employed.
The full report can be read below.