Russian propaganda has been flourishing in Western Europe for a long time. The runaway success of Russian cuisine and the music of Tchaikovsky, along with continuing popularity of popular animated series like Masha and the Bear, have demonstrated this point clearly.
Media in both the Baltic States and Great Britain have compared Masha to the Kremlin. They say that this is a way of showing Russia as not so much different from other places because people in the West see Russia as a country with an aggressive, fearful bear stereotype.
In Germany, the first publication of this animated film in 2009 has become a global phenomenon. “Masha and the Bear” rule the airwaves all over America and speak more than 40 different languages.
“In Indonesia, there’s a little girl who is given the name Masha. Masha has more than 4 billion views on YouTube and is in a Guinness Book of World Records!” German journalists write, highlighting that the creator was not paid for the content produced yet that has earned so much success.
Calling for a ban on Masha and the Bear, as well as bans already imposed on the work of Dostoevsky and Tolstoy, “The Nutcracker”, and canceling the play “The Interesting Case of Benjamin Button” by a curator at New York Public Library will indeed further play into the hands of Russophobes.