Disinfo: A true flourishing of Estonian culture, science and industry took place under the Soviet rule – it does not look like an occupation

Summary

A true flourishing of Estonian culture, science, education, and industry took place under the Soviet rule. How can Estonians speak about “greatness” of their country before WWII, if it did not even have its national choir? The first thing which was realized by this “Asian satanic horde” was to establish the first Estonian people’s choir in history – it does not look like occupation.

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism – it tries to promote the idea that there was no Soviet occupation of the Baltic states and that the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact did not cause the division of East and Central Europe between the USSR and Nazi Germany, leading to WWII. See similar cases on the Baltic states and the Soviet occupation here and here. The statement that "Estonia did not have its own culture or a national choir" before being occupied by the USSR is a cynical historical manipulation. As a result of massive Soviet repressions, Estonia lost large part of its cultural elite, which was replaced by new elites loyal to Moscow. The White Book on the losses inflicted on the Estonian nation by occupation regimes (1940-1991) prepared by the Estonian State Commission on Examination of the Policies of Repression presents a well-documented list of the Soviet repressions aimed at destruction of independent Estonian science, culture, and education. These repressions resulted in murders and deportations of thousands of prominent Estonian artists, professors, teachers, scientists, poets, and writers. In terms of the economic development of Estonia before WWII, this country had quite a high level of economic development throughout 1920s and 1930s. According to The Cambridge Economic History of Modern Europe, in 1929, the GDP per capita of Estonia was the highest among the countries of Central and Southern Europe (with the exception of Czech Republic and Italy). In 1938, after this indicator, Estonia overtook such countries as Austria, Italy, and Ireland. Thus, throughout 1920s and 1930s, the level of development of Estonian economy was similar to Western European states.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 164
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 14/09/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: USSR, Estonia, Baltic states, Russia
  • Keywords: Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, Historical revisionism, Baltic states
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Crimea reunited with Russia after a democratic referendum

The reunification of the Crimea with Russia took place after a referendum in March 2014. 96.77% of the citizens of the Republic of Crimea and 95.6% of the inhabitants of Sevastopol voted in favour of joining the Russian Federation.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on the annexation of Crimea claiming that Crimean citizens chose to join Russia through a legal referendum. Crimea is a part of Ukraine and was illegally annexed by Russia. In 2014, Russian troops obliged the parliament of Crimea to organise a referendum, which was illegitimate under international law, and then formally annexed the peninsula and brought it under Russian territorial control. The annexation has been condemned by the UNGA (see the resolution A/RES/68/262 on the territorial integrity of Ukraine). Following the covert invasion by “little green men”, the referendum in Crimea was conducted hastily and at gunpoint, barring impartial observers from entering the peninsula. Therefore, no international body recognises the so-called referendum, announced on the 27th of February 2014, and held on 16th of March 2014. The oft-cited figure of 97% has been contested by the Kremlin’s own Human Rights Council, which estimated that only between 30% and 50% of Crimeans took part in the referendum. A year after the illegal annexation, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted that the plan to annex Crimea was ordered weeks before the so-called referendum. The European Union does not recognise Crimea's annexation and continues to condemn it as a violation of international law. For the EU statement on the fifth anniversary of the illegal annexation of Crimea see here. For more cases on Crimea, see here and here. Also, read further debunking by StopFake.

Crimea became part of Russia after the referendum, which took place after a coup

Crimea became part of Russia in March 2014 after a referendum, held after the coup in Kiev. 96.77 percent of the voters of the Crimea and 95.6 percent of the residents of Sevastopol voted in favour of unification with Russia.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative claiming that Euromaidan was a coup d’état and that Crimean citizens chose to re-join Russia through a legal referendum. The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution stating that the referendum in Crimea was not valid and could not serve as a basis for any change in the status of the peninsula. See more cases about this narrative here, here, here and here. In order to justify the illegal annexation of Crimea and the reunification with Russia, Moscow regularly claims that Euromaidan was a coup d’état. See the full debunk of this disinformation claim here.

Crimea became part of Russia by the will of its inhabitants

The citizens of Ukraine knew long ago that there is no possibility of Crimea returning to Ukraine. Crimea became part of Russia by the will of its inhabitants, according to the results of the referendum. That is why there is no chance for Crimea to return to Ukraine.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Euromaidan, the illegal annexation of Crimea, and the war in Ukraine. There was no coup d'état in Ukraine. The spontaneous onset of the Euromaidan protests was an organic reaction by numerous parts of the Ukrainian population to former President Yanukovych’s sudden departure from the promised Association Agreement with the European Union in November 2013. See the full debunk of this disinformation claim here. No international body has recognised the so-called Crimea referendum, announced on 27 February 2014, and held on 16 March 2014. Thirteen members of the United Nations Security Council voted in favour of a resolution declaring the referendum invalid. On the 27th of March 2014, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution which stated that the referendum in Crimea was not valid and could not serve as a basis for any change in the status of the peninsula. On December 17, 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea . On the fifth anniversary of Crimea's annexation, the EU reiterated its position of non-recognition of the landgrab and continues to stand in full solidarity with Ukraine, supporting its sovereignty and territorial integrity. The international community, including the European Union recognizes and condemns clear violations of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity by acts of aggression by the Russian armed forces since February 2014.