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Not just Ukraine in focus of Russian propaganda last week, Czechia and Germany in the spotlight too

Militarised Disinformation: When Highway Renovation becomes a Western Attack “to the East”
Not just Ukraine in focus of Russian propaganda last week, Czechia and Germany in the spotlight too
Article by: EU vs Disinfo

Editor’s Note

Last week as always, Ukraine was in the focus of Russian propaganda. Here are just a few narratives of the last week’s Russian propaganda on Ukraine:

  • In the weird world of Russian disinformation, Ukraine was planning major hostilities in the Donbas during the Soccer World Cup in Russia and has brought a huge amount of hardware and personnel to the front, Ukraine even planned a terrorist chemical attack but a warning of almighty Putin prevented Ukraine from launching an offensive in the Donbas. However, nobody has seen the convoys of Ukrainian Army being deployed in the front line, even the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission which reported an average military activity without significant escalations. Of course, no evidence of a plotted chemical attack was presented and the statement remained one of many fairytale narratives like the ones voiced every day by occupation authorities of Donetsk in Luhansk, who keep telling the fake stories about NATO mercenaries being deployed in Ukrainian positions and about infighting between the  Ukrainian Army and Police.
  • Of course, once again it was alleged that Russian soldiers were reportedly not present in the Ukrainian territory despite multiple overwhelming evidence of the opposite.
  • Russian RIA Novosti stated that Ukraine violated international rules back in 2014 when they did not close the airspace, allowing MH17 to be shot down, while in the real world at that time, the airspace was closed over the area up to 32,000 feet. The commercial flight MH17 was passing the area at 33,000 feet. There was nothing to suggest at the time that the Russian-hybrid forces had access to sophisticated weapons that would be able to shoot down an airplane at that height.
  • As we can hear it for the last four years, Ukraine was labeled as a Nazi state once again on one of the Russian state-funded TV channels. Of course, without any arguments, just to keep the narrative to be repeated.

However, the Russian disinformation campaign touched the EU topics more than usual as well.

This week, the pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign zoomed into Europe. Its magnifying glass focused on highway D1 in the Czech Republic, connecting Prague and Brno, the two biggest Czech cities.

Militarized disinformation: When highway renovation becomes a Western attack “to the East”

Through the lens of the pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign, the renovation of the highway appeared to be suspicious business and part of preparations for a war, a Czech outlet alerted.

The outlet also convinced that highways can have hidden agendas. To sow distrust among its audience it announced that the motorway is being renovated to prepare it for an attack “to the East.” (See here how in fact the EU and NATO have been building cooperation with Russia).

Conspiracies were well represented in this week’s disinformation trends. As we have earlier reported, conspiracy theories have gained more and more room in the Russian media, where references to the most popular conspiracy theories are six to nine times more frequent now than they were in 2011.

In a long monologue, a TV host on Russian state Channel 1 argued why the Bilderberg Club really might be the “secret world government,” ruling the world policies behind our backs.

A Hungarian outlet took the message further and stated that the Bilderberg Group that held its annual meeting in Turin, Italy, is making preparations for a new war against Russia. The same outlet also claimed that the Bilderberg Group was responsible for the Two World wars as well as for the Cold War.

We took a careful look at the Turin meeting agenda, but did not manage to find war preparations among the discussed topics.

Germany targeted by disinformation

The pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign has held a special place for Germany for a long time.

This week was no exception. We learned that Angela Merkel does not represent German interests but is the puppet of the Rothschild family. See all the disinforming messages with the keyword “puppet” reported in our Disinformation Review since 2016.

Furthermore, Russia Today (RT) claimed the German Ministry of Defence is unaware of the presence of some tanks of the Ukrainian army in a tank competition and “doesn’t want to know about it”. Bild quickly debunked the claim.

And a Russian radio show recalled the Lisa case. To remind you, the “Lisa case” was a major disinformation campaign, where a Russian speaking girl was first reported to have been kidnapped and raped by migrants, but soon the reports appeared to be false.

However, protests were organized against the German government and the police’s ability to protect the Russian minority in Germany was put into question.

The radio show doubted that the Russian language media had ever published false information about the case. Well, the evidence is still online.

We also heard false alarms about Western provocations – from Syria to Russia. The West, we learned from another conspiracy, does not only prepare its highways as part of the war preparation, but its secret services plot a terror attack in Russia just to spoil the World Cup.

See earlier examples of how pro-Kremlin disinformation has sought to talk about other major sports events in militaristic terms.

More disinformation cases can be found in the EU vs Disinfo online database.

Read more:


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