Disinfo: 98% of French media are conspiracy-prone because of their Russophobia

Summary

An analysis of 56 leading French media, shows a massive mainstream conspiracy based on a hatred of Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump. 98% of the French press have republished, without checking, a certain number of statements relating to the Russia-Gate thesis. And when this thesis of Russian meddling has been torn to pieces by the various reports and the various American studies, many French mainstream journalists have refrained from admitting their mistake. Some even consider that a collusion has always been established when it wasn’t the case. There is Russophobia among some journalists because they need an enemy. The dominant oligarchic class inside the EU needs a devil at the gates of Europe. Moreover, countries like Russia and China do not accept a new world order dominated by imperialist powers.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative denying Russian meddling in elections and calling any attempt to denounce them as Russophobia and conspiracy theories. Extensive evidence confirms that Russia did meddle in the 2016 US presidential elections, specifically aiming to damage Hillary Clinton's campaign and aid Republican candidate Donald Trump. In the US, 126 millions of users were reached by Russian operatives, 29 millions from them have seen the content "directly". Robert Mueller's investigation concluded that Russia did interfere in the 2016 election. Robert Mueller’s report maintains that “the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities”. Nevertheless, it states that Russian interference activities did take place. The 448-page Mueller report issued in March 2019 (see here) contains copious detail about how Russia interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, both by using social media to influence American voters with disinformation and by hacking into the Clinton campaign’s computers. A previous (2017) report prepared by the US Intelligence Community analysed the motivation and scope of the Kremlin's intentions for the US election and the Kremlin's use of cyber tools and media campaigns to influence US public opinion. As concluded earlier by the US intelligence community and by Mueller’s own inquiry “the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts”. See similar cases claiming that Robert Mueller failed to find anything that would incriminate the US president, Charges of Russian meddling in US elections collapsed after release of Mueller report, Russiagate never had any real basis and Russiagate is a hoax .

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 210
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 07/09/2020
  • Outlet language(s) French
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: France, US, Russia
  • Keywords: election meddling, Mainstream media, Anti-Russian, Donald Trump, Russophobia
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Navalny was not poisoned with Novichok

If Alexei Navalny’s condition was caused by poisoning from Novichok, the people accompanying him would have to suffer the same symptoms. According to the chief toxicologist who first treated Navalny in Omsk hospital in Siberia, his situation was triggered by an “internal activation mechanism”. Novichok is an organophosphate compound and because of its high toxicity, it is not possible to poison just one person.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on Navalny poisoning. Clinical findings at the Charité hospital indicated that Navalny was poisoned with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. Subsequent toxicological tests provided unequivocal evidence of a chemical nerve agent of the Novichok group in the blood samples of Alexei Navalny. The use of multiple and simultaneous versions about an event involving questionable actions by the Russian government or its allies, in order to confound citizens about the actual truth, is a recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation strategy, already seen in the cases of the MH17 downing, the illegal annexation of Crimea, the murder attempt against Sergei and Yulia Skripal or chemical attacks in Syria.

Alexei Navalny was not poisoned, he suffered from a metabolic disorder

A Russian opposition politician, blogger and critic of the current regime Alexei Navalny suffered a metabolic disorder that made him feel bad on the plane, and the plane had to make an emergency landing in Omsk, where he was given all the care. All necessary tests have been performed in Omsk to show that this is not poisoning but a metabolic disorder.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on Navalny poisoning. Alexei Navalny was under the pressure of his family transferred from hospital in Omsk to Charité hospital in Berlin. The preliminary test results from the Charité – Universitätsmedizin hospital in Berlin indicated that the Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was poisoned during his stay in Siberia. Clinical findings indicate poisoning with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. German government later confirmed that Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny was poisoned with a chemical nerve agent from the Novichok. See related disinformation message claiming that only traces of alcohol and caffeine were found in Navalny´s blood.

Peace in Ukraine is not in the interests of Western governments

The Ukrainian government does nothing to end the war in Donbas. […] the Western governments could have an impact on Kyiv, so the latter starts to implement the Minsk agreements. However, the preservation of tension near the borders of Russia is beneficial to the players of this geopolitical game. Thus, the West does not need peace in Ukraine.

Disproof

An unfounded conspiracy theory and a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the war in Ukraine, claiming that Ukraine refuses to implement the Minsk agreements. Also consistent with a narrative that the war in Ukraine is a civil war waged by Ukraine and its Western partners against the "Republics of Donbas". Contrary to the disinformation claim, the European governments and the US have been insisting many times that the full implementation of the Minsk agreements is the only way to end the war in Donbas. In July 2020, the European Council stated the following:

"It [the EU] has repeatedly made clear that the full implementation of the Minsk agreements is the only way to find a lasting and peaceful solution to the conflict in eastern Ukraine."

The French Ambassador to Ukraine Etienne de Poncins also said that France considers the Minsk agreements the only instrument to bring peace to Eastern Ukraine:

“The Minsk agreements are criticised, but they are the only available roadmap to peace. Apart from their implementation, there is no other way. I do not see another possibility at the moment, except the Minsk and Normandy formats.”

The German Ambassador to Ukraine Anka Feldhusen stated in a recent interview that "the Minsk deal still provides a structure that could help find a solution to the conflict." France and Germany also supported the decisions taken on the Normandy Format meeting in December 2019, including further steps in the implementation of the Minsk agreements. Read previous disinformation cases: that the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada admitted that Kyiv will not implement the Minsk agreements; that Ukrainian ex-President Leonid Kravchuk is looking for new ways to deceive Donbas; that the US wants to discredit Belarus and the Minsk agreements; that Normandy format will cease to exist because Ukraine is unwilling to implement Minsk agreements; and that Ukraine is trying to compromise and undermine the Minsk agreements.