Russians see Ukrainians as puppets in West’s ‘anti-Russian policy’
An overwhelming majority of Russians deny personal responsibility or Russia’s responsibility for the bloodshed in eastern Ukraine
Against a background of increasing anti-Western sentiment in Russia, the Levada Centre’s latest survey has found that a large number of Russians view all the actions of the Kyiv authorities as the result of western interference. Between Aug 1-4, 52% of respondents believed that Ukraine’s wish for European integration was because it had “become a puppet in the hands of the West and USA with their anti-Russian policy”. Only one in four was convinced that Ukrainians are impelled by their own wish to make their country “democratic, prosperous and free”.
77% believe that the ‘anti-terrorist operation’ is a US initiative while only 7% believe in the ‘viability’ of the Kyiv government.
Views about Russian participation in the events in Ukraine were divided. 32% believe that Russia is interfering, and is right to do so; 24% - that Russia should intervene in the Ukrainian crisis but is not doing so; 33% - that Russia is not intervening and should continue to stay out of it.
Russians deny both personal responsibility (81%) and responsibility at the level of the state (75%) for the death of people in the east of Ukraine.
Euphoria over Russia’s annexation of the Crimea remains, with 85% of Russians calling this a “great achievement of the country’s political leadership”. However the number of those who recognize the adverse consequences of the move is gradually increasing. 45% of respondents could not exclude the possibility that the “Crimean campaign” would result in a reduction in the standard of living of the Russian population; a reduction in income; increase in prices, etc.
58% of Russians would like to receive a pluralistic range of information about Ukraine; whereas 35% find the information from the main channels on Russian TV sufficient.
From the report