Pazderka lived in Russia for many years and witnessed firsthand the rise of a mass propaganda machine fueled by state-run TV channels that were, and still are, fully orchestrated by the Kremlin. Using the Ukraine Crisis from 2014 to the present as an example, Pazderka will show how this fine-tuned and meticulously crafted propaganda machine fundamentally influences how ordinary Russians think and paints a picture of aggression against Ukraine and murder as a necessary evil for defending their country against an imaginary attack from the West.
Josef Pazderka (* 1974) studied history at the Faculty of Arts at Charles University in Prague and also graduated in Development Studies from Oxford Brookes University in Oxford, UK. After completing his university studies, he worked for the humanitarian organization People in Need in Russia and Africa. From 2005, he worked on the foreign desk editorial staff for Czech Television as a permanent correspondent in Moscow and later in Warsaw. From 2013 to 2015, he also intensively covered the crisis in Ukraine. In November 2016, he began serving as Deputy Editor-in-Chief for the online daily newspaper before leading the news site as Editor-in-Chief from April 2018 until August 2022. Since October 2022, he has been serving as Editor-in-Chief for Český rozhlas Plus (Czech Radio Plus). Josef Pazderka is noted for winning four prestigious Journalist Awards for his coverage of the Beslan school siege in North Ossetia, his reports on famine-stricken Somalia, and his commentaries on Russia. He notably edited and co-authored the book entitled Invaze 1968. Ruský pohled (The Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968: The Russian Perspective), which was published in Czech, Polish, Russian, English and is included amongst the prestigious Harvard Cold War Studies Book Series at Harvard University in Massachusetts.