New War in Ukraine Dashboard tracks messaging from Russia’s military bloggers on Telegram

Washington, D.C. – The Alliance for Securing Democracy at the German Marshall Fund of the United States today launched the War in Ukraine: Military Bloggers dashboard, an interactive tool that allows users to track the reach and messaging of 39 prominent Russian military bloggers on Telegram.   

Many Russian military bloggers have amassed significant followings on Telegram, enabling them to influence people’s perceptions of the war in Ukraine. The data collected on our new dashboard is designed to serve as a starting point for further in-depth analysis of the impact of these channels.

“Russian military bloggers are a powerful force in the information contest around the war in Ukraine. Their massive audiences paired with their real-time, often unfiltered updates gives them unique influence over people’s perception of the conflict. It’s our hope that this dashboard will help shine a light on the narratives and tactics that these bloggers use,” Research Analyst Joseph Bodnar said.

Our preliminary dashboard findings include:

  • Russian military bloggers have a greater reach online than Russian state-backed media: Since May 2023, the 39 monitored military blogger channels on Telegram generated more than 17 billion views, 350 million reactions, and 45 million forwards on 62,000 posts. Russian state media Twitter accounts, on the other hand, received only 2.2 million retweets and 7.8 million likes between mid-April and mid-July 2023.
  • Military bloggers are fundraising for Russia’s war efforts on Telegram: Russian military bloggers use their influence to solicit donations for military equipment, like anti-drone air defense systems, and memorials for fallen soldiers. Between May 1 and July 31, 2023, the monitored bloggers produced nearly 1,000 posts soliciting donations to bank cards or accounts at sanctioned Russian financial institutions. Another 80 posts included links to crypto wallets.
  • Bloggers push Russia’s line that Ukraine must be “de-Nazified”: While the monitored military bloggers have mixed feelings about the Wagner Group and occasionally criticize Russian military “elites,” they are uniformly pro-war. Bloggers describe the war as “honorable work” and are committed to the idea that Ukraine is a Nazi state that must be “liquidated”—they are perhaps even more committed to this idea than state-backed media. Over the past three months, more than 2,000 posts collected on the dashboard mentioned Nazis or Nazism in Ukraine.

Try out the dashboard here:

Read more on our findings here:


The views expressed in GMF publications and commentary are the views of the author alone.