Disinfo: COVID is not a killer virus, wearing masks and testing has no sense at all

Summary

It is completely unjustified to portray COVID as a killer virus that it simply isn’t. […] I don’t know why the government continues to govern this way. Possibly to justify their hard approach – namely also that of wearing mask is, in my opinion, nothing more than to keep up with the epidemic mood. There is nothing going on, nothing at all. No corona activity for a long time is going on. […] It is not clear to me what this is all about … except, as I said, to keep the epidemic mood going and what is behind it is not clear to me, why this is made. In my opinion, it is completely absurd and should be stopped at any time, both the wearing of the masks and the testing – there is no point in any of it at all.

Disproof

Interview downplays downplay the severity and urgency of the COVID-19 outbreak and the imposed measures of the German government The statements were published in a video interview at RT Deutsch and generated a high level of attention in social media. The author of the statements is a German physician, who had previously attracted attention with controversial statements on the subject of COVID-19. In the video interview, the RT-moderator does not refute or question the doctor's theses. The disinformative narratives remain unquestioned. According to this narrative, COVID-19 restrictions introduced by the German government – such as lockdowns, quarantines, wearing masks, testing for COVID-19 are irrational and absurd, and pursue hidden goals of the government. Pro-Kremlin media have spread a variety of false claims to push this message, for example that COVID-19 is a fake epidemic manufactured by the media, that COVID-19 is fake and a political move to install hegemony, that the virus is safe, and that the coronavirus pandemic is exaggerated in order to establish fascist hygiene dictatorships. This narrative aims to discredit actions taken by the World Health Organisation and by individual countries to stop the spread of the new disease. It is not true that COVID-19 is not a “killer virus”. The novel coronavirus, which causes the COVID-19 disease, belongs to a family of viruses originating in animals that include others such as SARS and MERS. It was first reported in the city of Wuhan in central China in late 2019 and has been rapidly spreading across the world ever since. The number of COVID-19 cases has surpassed 32,730,947 globally with over 991,224 deaths as of September 27, 2020. However, the death rate aside, the major concern with the COVID-19 pandemic is its potential to overwhelm national healthcare systems, resulting in even more deaths because patients cannot receive treatment as hospitals exceed capacity. Thus, flattening the curve and limiting the spread of the virus - which is highly transmittable - is recommended as an essential precautionary measure by international health authorities, including the WHO. Read similar cases claiming that COVID-19 is an ordinary flu epidemic and that media and politicians are fuelling hysteria, that governments are exaggerating the death toll of the coronavirus, and that ruling élites are spreading coronavirus panic in order to gain unlimited powers and to actively interfere in the economy.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 215
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 19/08/2020
  • Language/target audience: German
  • Country: Germany
  • Keywords: coronavirus, fake news, Conspiracy theory
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Poland is behind the protests in Belarus, Lukashenka needs to make the country part of Russia

Poland conducts the protests in Belarus and legitimises a Maidan there. Although protesters were seriously suppressed, they got a moral victory since TV presenters, sport and culture figures, former policemen started supporting them. Lukashenka has the only way out of this situation. He has to quickly make Belarus part of Russia and rely on Vladimir Putin’s authority who will support the Union State creation.

Disproof

A recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Western attempts to stage a colour revolution in Belarus and challenging the the loss of Belarus's sovereignty. Read our past analysis discussing various pro-Kremlin media allegations that Lithuania, Poland, Ukraine, Soros and other foreign actors are behind protests in Belarus. There is no proof of any Western involvement in the widespread protests in Belarus. Hundreds of thousands of Belarusians have been protesting against a massive vote-rigging and police violence since 9 August 2020. On 16 August 2020 Belarus witnessed the largest rallies in the city of Minsk and dozens smaller towns and localities in its history. On 19 August 2020 the European Council called Belarus's elections neither free nor fair, condemned the violence against peaceful protesters, called for a complete and transparent investigation into all alleged abuses, and announced its decision to impose sanctions on a substantial number of individuals responsible for violence, repression, and election fraud. Pro-Kremlin media often promote false dilemmas for Belarus's political development, painting very bleak prospects for Belarus up to the complete loss of sovereignty and independence in case it does not proceed towards a very close integration format in relations with Russia. See earlier disinformation cases alleging that Belarus faces either normal development under Russia or a forced Polonization and economic devastation, that the only possible scenario for Ukraine and Belarus to prevent their descent into Nazism is to become a Russian western federal area, and that the direction of Belarus and other post-Soviet countries' political development is either a union with Russia or unavoidable degradation.

Millions of poor Ukrainians will be left without gas in 2021

Millions of Ukrainians may be left without gas in 2021. Almost three million Ukrainian consumers who do not have a gas meter are at risk of being cut off. From 1 January 2021 in Ukraine, in accordance with the law “on ensuring commercial metering of natural gas,” disconnections to consumers may begin. First of all, the blow will fall on the most vulnerable segments of the population: pensioners and low-income citizens who do not have the financial ability to pay for the installation of a gas meter.

Disproof

This is a scare-story which manipulates the truth. The law "On ensuring commercial metering of natural gas" was adopted by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine back in 2017, and the document does comes into force in January 2021. Thus, the Ukrainian government gave Ukrainians and gas companies four years to prepare for the implementation of the law. Ukrainian gas companies and operators of gas distribution networks constantly warn their customers about the possibility of disconnecting from the gas supply if meters do not appear in their apartments and houses before the specified time. Moreover, the law states that the consumer does not need to pay for the installation of gas meters in apartments, for Ukrainians this service is free - all costs are borne by the state. In addition, if the consumer does not have a meter installed by January, they will not be immediately disconnected from the gas supply. First, such a consumer will be transferred to a different gas tariff, which is higher than the existing rate for the population. Only after such measures can the consumer can be disconnected from the gas network. Read similar case claims that In Ukraine, pensioners freeze without Russian gas.

Despite support of Western curators, the Belarusian Maidan stalled, just like Hitler after Smolensk

Maidans are planned well in advance, their participants get to know the strategy many months before the action. Western curators actively pushed Maidan for escalation. The Belarusian opposition did not have enough resources and had to take a pause. Now, just as Hitler after the Smolensk battle, the opposition goes through restructuring and preparation for the second stage of Blitzkrieg. It remains to be seen if the Belarusian Maidan was prepared as a Blitzkrieg or has an alternative plan for a protracted war against Belarusian regime.

Disproof

This publication promotes recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Western attempts to stage a colour revolution in Belarus and builds an absurd comparison of protests in Belarus with Hitler's actions against the USSR. The accusation of Nazism/ Fascism and building a link to Nazi Germany is one of recurring techniques of pro-Kremlin outlets, read our past analysis Nazi east, Nazi west, Nazi over the cuckoo's nest. There is absolutely no proof of any Western involvement in the widespread protests in Belarus. Hundreds of thousands of Belarusians have been protesting against a massive vote-rigging and police violence since 9 August 2020. On 16 August 2020 Belarus witnessed the largest rallies in the city of Minsk and dozens smaller towns and localities in its history. On 19 August 2020 the European Council called Belarus's elections neither free nor fair, condemned the violence against peaceful protesters, called for a complete and transparent investigation into all alleged abuses, and announced its decision to impose sanctions on a substantial number of individuals responsible for violence, repression, and election fraud. See earlier disinformation cases claiming that Hitler's Nazi officials are not less Belarusian heroes than Kalinowski, that West has approved a new ‘Barbarossa’ plan to attack Russia, that West always dreams of splitting Russia and about waging a war against Russia from Belarusian territory.