In light of Russian attempts to interfere in American elections, many people are asking whether or not a vacation in Russia is a good idea. Here are three things to consider before you book your trip:
(1) Russia is actively engaging in information warfare in the United States. In an effort to stir up social discord and political divisions, Russians are using social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook to pose as Americans and spread misinformation. And if you doubt how effective this technique is, here is something to think about: there is evidence that the conspiracy surrounding JFK’s assassination—that the American government was responsible for his murder—was a myth propagated by Russia (And we all know someone who STILL believes this conspiracy to be true)
(2) There is reason to believe that Russia is to blame for sonic attacks on American Diplomats and their families in Cuba in 2016 and 2017. (Sonic attacks use sound waves to cause disturbances in the brain) Perhaps you’re thinking, but I’m not a diplomat so I’m safe. Ok, fantastic, so you’re a low value target with very little chance of meeting a similar fate. But do you really want to spend your money in a nation that is willing to injure your fellow citizens? (Note: it’s estimated that the contribution of tourism to the gross domestic product in Russia was approximately 5%)
(3) Russia is a known violator of human rights. Political opponents are frequently executed, journalists are imprisoned, and if you’re part of the GLBTQ community, life can be extremely difficult.
For these three reasons, The Blue Juice recommends American travelers avoid Russia until conditions improve. As a rule, it’s never a good idea to travel to countries at war with our own—even if that war is happening in the cyber sphere. If you’ve read all of this and still want to go, you’re probably one of those ‘conflict tourists’ who want to hike through Iran or visit an Isis stronghold. Bon voyage.