№ 2, 2021
The article analyzes features of the coverage of the Syrian conflict by the Russian media. Empirically, the study is based on the articles published in 2015—2019 in the most cited federal media resources — the online edition of RIA Novosti, as well as the newspapers Izvestia and Vedomosti. The authors employ the method of qualitative content analysis in the MAXQDA program. Given the extremely important role that farming plays in media resources, the authors focused on identifying keyframes of coverage of the events in Syria, which allowed them to trace the main trends in presenting these events, as well as document technologies and techniques used by the media to create political images related to the Syrian crisis. The research study showed that the collective frame of the Syrian conflict in the Russian media has the following features: (1) emphasis on the diplomatic component to the detriment of the military one; (b) demonization of the United States; (3) ignoring causes of the conflict; (4) anti-terrorism rhetoric. Two technologies were actively used in framing — the technology of fragmenting information, which prevents the formation of a general picture of what is going on, and the technology of attention distraction aimed at playing down coverage of the controversial events, which violates the integrity of the frame by focusing on relatively insignificant and obvious events.
According to the authors’ conclusion, despite all the efforts of the federal media, the Syrian operation of Russia failed to become a “small victorious war” that would provide a wave of patriotic mobilization in the country. With the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, the Syrian crisis has actually disappeared from the media agenda and is unlikely to make any significant contribution to changing the Russian information field in the future.
Issaev L. M.
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