The company Chetvertaya Vlast (4 Vlast – means: the Forth Power) was a publisher of the magazine Vacation in Russia. Anya Chapman is listed as contact in London at the web-site The alleged Spy-Dad Vasily Kushchenko worked at the 4 Vlast tourist agency and on Mrs. World-Russia project.
The 4 Vlast PR Company is close to the Russian Presidency. The boss Aleksandr Krestnikov (Ironically ‘Krestnikov’ translates in English as Godfather) writes occasionally for Rossiyskaya Gazeta – which is the official government paper.
In March 7, 2001 Krestnikov writes an article where he talks about the new Russian PR strategy for the world:
15 years ago, at the time of the Cold War, the parity in the ideological wars was provided by multiple media with communist orientation… Counter information was covered with significant financial base: it is no secret that the Soviet Union spent an impressive amount on the ideology. Now the situation is different: in fact we do not have any “friendly” publications in foreign countries left, no strong position on the international PR market.
At the same time there is an obvious need overseas to create real idea about the new Russia. We need a powerful structure that would provide informational support for Russian domestic reforms and foreign policy initiatives… this is well understood in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and in the Presidential Administration.
Most likely, certain steps in creating a structure that will improve Russia’s image in the eyes of the Western public, will be undertaken in the near future. But at the same time there is a danger that the new structure will become a tasty target for hunters to warm their hands on big money. We must confess: in our history such precedent is not so uncommon.
So in 2001 Russia was still seeking for a good PR strategy. Ironically ten years later they got help in the face of the US President Obama who is watching now over to make sure Russia’s image in the world is improved.
In the questions section of the 4 Vlast company web-site a man from St. Petersburg is asking if the agency has connections with the foreign mass-media for example European papers and magazines.
The 4 Vlast answer is very careful:
it depends which specific media you are interested in. As a whole the answer is positive. We have connections with the leading publishers in the countries of the former USSR and abroad.
The Spy-Gate connected PR firm is performing services for the Russian Government. For example: they are doing PR training of the people working for the MVD – Ministry of Internal affairs.
For the International Day of the Free Press the 4 Vlast PR agency received a thank-you card from the Russian Minister of the Science and Technology.
May be the most interesting question in the alleged Russian spy scandal is: Which European and American newspapers and magazines are working with Kushchenko’s 4Vlast company in Moscow?