Sputnik: The Skripal case is certainly something that has been making headlines for a while now. There has been a lot of fallout and likely to be more fallout from the case as it develops. I also understand it is something very difficult to discuss because, well there are many question marks in the air still The UK has refused to cooperate with Russia on the matter and that is something that is certainly causing concern. What is your opinion, what aims are the UK pursuing here?
Bogdan Polishchuk: Well, I think you have to see it in the context of the situation in the UK where you have a government that's not, well, there are a lot of problems that you have within the country and, normally, in that situation sometimes it's quite conducive to just find an external threat to sort of rally around. And with the Russian case, I mean the demonization of Russia in Western media makes it an obvious choice for any sort of campaign aimed at trying to divert energy and attention of the media towards something that, you know, is not so inward looking, you can say.
Sputnik: Why, do you think, there is so much international fallout and other states were quick to jump on board and point the finger prior to any real investigation?
Bogdan Polishchuk: Well, it really has to do with the media and the demonization of Russia in the media where basically again the headlines are [about] Boris Johnson comparing Russia's FIFA bit to Hitler's Olympics and stuff like that where every single Western country is intent on portraying Russia as, you know, this Hitlerian state or something like that.
So, of course, once you have this media narrative going, it's quite easy to just take the next step. I think there is a difference between what the media says and what some of the actual politicians and policy makers think. I mean we saw Macron who tried to distance himself from some of the more lurid allegations about Russia, but at the same time, the media obviously has a real, powerful take on this situation. It can influence policy makers just by saying "hey, this is a narrative we are going with and there is not much you can do about it at that point."
Well, look, demonization in the media, and mudslinging, and finger pointing cannot continue forever. I mean usually they jump upon an issue, upon a topic, and then, well, their attention tends to something else. Do you think that it will gradually wind down in any foreseeable future?
Bogdan Polishchuk: Well it depends if something else would have to come up, would have, probably, to fit the narrative. Anything that doesn't fit the narrative, doesn't really make it into the Western media. Again, I mentioned the Telford scandal, and that was something that really should have been in the news for weeks. I mean proof and people coming forward and talking about Muslim rape gangs that were being ignored by the police and by the state, and that's a very serious, you would think, story. But the media immediately jumped on this story of the Russian poisoning and that's, you know, there is always a narrative and you've got to stick to the narrative, you've got to stick to the script. If something comes up, you know, comes up that pushes the bad narrative even further, than yeah, it will switch to that. But I don't think that media is going to throw up the tendency: "ah, that's it, we are not going to be pushing this whole Russia's the Evil Empire, you know, narrative anymore."
The views and opinions expressed by Bogdan Polishchuk are those of speaker and do not necessarily reflect Sputnik's position.