Disinfo: EU is showcasing hypocrisy in its handling of Belarus

Summary

When will Macron ask the European Union to stand by the hundreds of thousands of yellow vest protesters who seek by means of peaceful demonstrations to have their rights, freedoms and sovereignty respected? When will the European Union […] start acting […] to support protests in its own backyard? This is the definition of hypocrisy.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation message aimed at undermining European values and justifying violence against protesters in Belarus. The message uses disinformation technique of "whataboutism" allegedly exposing the ills of the West. The situations in France and Belarus are not comparable, France is a democracy where Yellow Vests presented their candidates' list for the European Parliament elections in 2019. According to Freedom House, the French political system features vibrant democratic processes and generally strong protections for civil liberties and political rights. The EU has urged the Belarusian authorities to stop the disproportionate and unacceptable violence against peaceful protesters and does not recognize the results of presidential election as process did not meet the international standards expected of a participating state of the OSCE. More cases about Belarus can be read at the following links: Russia has neutralised many Western attempts to topple the Belarusian government, The EU continues to support a colour revolution in Belarus, The US wishes to destabilise Belarus and provoke a war, Polish ruling elites dream of military intervention, The West is helping to destabilise the situation in Belarus before the election, Belarus will either become part of Russia or the West’s poor colony, NATO pays the Belarusian opposition $1 per one person infected with the coronavirus. See related disinformation cases about the Yellow Vest protests in France here.

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  • Reported in: Issue 208
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 17/08/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Arabic,
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: EU, France, Belarus
  • Keywords: yellow vests, Emmanuel Macron, Protest, European values
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The West wants to take Belarusian industry under control

The Western interest in [the protests in] Minsk can be explained by its interests “in privatisation: in order to take control over its industry and its economy.”

Disproof

There is no evidence of any of the Western country planning to take control of the Belarusian industry and economy. See similar disinformation messages the pro-Kremlin media used in the past to target Ukraine: West controls economy in Ukraine and Ukrainian economy will not survive without Russia. As for the protests in Belarus, they erupted to contest the results of the presidential elections in Belarus on the 9th of August, which are considered fraudulent by a large part of Belarusian society. The EU has said that the deterioration in the political climate culminated in neither free nor fair elections and an outburst of repressive violence.

George Soros' funds prepared the ground for future coups in former Soviet states

By the beginning of the 2000s, hundreds of George Soros’ funds were already preparing the ground for future coups in the former republics of the Union and in Eastern Europe.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative about the billionaire and the philanthropist George Soros, presenting him as a person who aims to control political systems in many countries, and presenting George Soros' Open Society Foundation as a tool for organising colour revolutions. Earlier pro-Kremlin media also accused George Soros' Open Society Foundation of provoking Anti-Russian protests in Georgia, being a threat to the national security of Armenia, and George Soros' network being directly involved in the presidential elections and the government crisis in Romania. The Open Society Foundation, is indeed sponsored by George Soros. It is a network of independent groups working for justice, democratic governance and human rights in different parts of the globe. The first international foundation was created in Hungary in 1984. Now, the Open Society Foundations support projects implemented by NGOs or state institutions in more than 120 countries. Soros has been accused (without evidence) of a wide range of 'sins': destabilising Europe, organising colour revolutions, attacking churches and traditional values as well as sponsoring the film "Joker" as a tutorial for colour revolutions. Read more about how pro-Kremlin disinformation outlets target George Soros.

Poland uses Lublin Triangle and ongoing protests in Belarus to revive its domination in the region

In the situation of intense protests in Belarus, the Baltic states and, particularly, Poland, showed unusual political activity. Unexpectedly, Warsaw called upon the EU to affect the situation in Minsk imposing the sanctions against Moscow. This situation is not a coincidence. The Poles have dreamed about the domination over the region since the times of Rzeczpospolita, which included Lithuania, part of modern Ukraine and Belarus. Today, the idea of Marshal Pilsudski to revive Poland “from Sea to Sea” is more popular than ever. Eleven days before the Presidential Elections in Belarus, Poland, Lithuania and Ukraine established a new union – the so-called Lublin Triangle, by analogy with the Union of Lublin, which laid the foundation for Rzeczpospolita in 1569. Belarus was immediately invited as a member of honour. There is one more interesting detail – since 2008, Warsaw has been actively issuing to the former USSR citizens the Card of Pole – the Belarusians have received the largest number of these Cards. The ongoing disturbances in Belarus is a good and long-awaited chance for those who are looking for a revanche [Poland].

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism alleging that Poland has imperialist plans for Belarus. The Kremlin-controlled media regularly accuses the political elites of Poland in Russophobia and attempts to “subordinate Belarus and Ukraine”. Moreover, the Kremlin propagandist messages repeatedly claim that all the regional organisations established by the countries of Central and Eastern Europe are aimed against Russia (Eastern Partnership, Three-Seas Initiative, Lublin Triangle, etc.). Poland fully supports the independence and territorial integrity of Belarus, it does not have any territorial claims against its neighbours, and it rejects any “imperial” ambitions towards other countries. The Lublin Triangle is a new regional initiative that will focus on developing and enhancing the economic, political, and cultural ties of Ukraine, Poland, and Lithuania. It will also serve as an important mechanism for strengthening Central Europe and promoting Ukraine's European and Euroatlantic integration. In a Joint Declaration, the foreign ministers of the three countries emphasized that the countries are committed to upholding the international law, to broaden military-to-military cooperation, to further support the Eastern Partnership program, among other things. Recently, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Lublin Triangle members have presented their common statement protesting against massive violence against peaceful protestors carried out by the Belarusian authorities. Read related examples of the Russian disinformation messages: The Lublin triangle is an anti-Russian coalition of Russophobes, Polish authorities are obsessed with an idea of reconstruction of a modern Polish empire, The Giedroyc Doctrine is an edition of the Polish imperialism and Poland continues to tear off Ukraine and Belarus from Russia even during the pandemic.