Disinfo: Europe is losing its values and former power

Summary

There were times when European countries were developing very quickly, both economically and culturally, but now Europe is losing its values and former power.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative undermining the EU, claiming that the EU is fundamentally broken and disintegrating - also consistent with the narrative of the EU's imminent collapse.

No evidence is given to support the claim that Europe is losing its values and former power.

The European Parliament’s Spring 2019 Eurobarometer, measuring public attitudes to the EU three months ahead of the European elections, reveals that despite the various internal and external challenges to the EU of the past years, the European sense of togetherness does not seem to have weakened. Continued support for EU membership goes with a strong belief (68%) that EU countries overall have benefited from being part of the EU - equalling the highest level recorded since 1983. In addition, 61% of respondents say their country’s EU membership is a good thing.

The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the European Union expanded 1.30 percent in the third quarter of 2019 compared with the same quarter of the previous year. 

In addition, the latest EU public opinion survey, conducted in February 2019, highlights continued strong support for the European Union.

Read similar cases attacking the EU by claiming that because of the Euro, Italy has become the poorest country of EU and that the UK referendum result will lead to the dissolution of the whole EU.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 176
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 02/12/2019
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Keywords: Euro-scepticism, EU, EU disintegration

Disclaimer

Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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World Anti-Doping Agency doesn’t have authority to make decisions affecting Russia

It is necessary to emphasise that the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) does not make decisions in relation to Russian sports, it offers them. The end point will be the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) process. A number of sanctions offered by WADA are mainly directed against representatives of Russian state authorities, against state symbols, while part of the WADA does not have any authority to make any decisions that affect Russia or its representatives.

Disproof

One of the methods of Kremlin disinformation is to deny the authority of international organisations and independent agencies to regulate and implement sanctions that impact it. The topic of doping is also a popular one in Russian media outlets. See examples such as  "The exclusion of Russian athletes in the Olympics is a form of war" and "There is no evidence that Russian athletes have been using doping".

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) was established in 1999 as an international independent agency composed and funded equally by the sport movement and governments around the world. Its key purpose is to carry out the World Anti-Doping Code (Code) – the document harmonising anti-doping policies in all sports and in all countries.

Trump Administration is updating Operation Condor in Latin America for the XXIst century

US president Donald Trump’s fixation is to root out Socialists. The Latin American left warned of a resurgence of Operation Condor in the XXI century, this time through updated methods. After taking part in the coup in Bolivia, the US reinforced sanctions against Nicaragua’s left-wing government and is now pointing to Mexico, where it could use the excuse of the designation of drug trafficking organisations as terrorist groups for direct military intervention.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory. No evidence is provided to support the claim that there is an 'Operation Condor of the XXIst century', nor the alleged US involvement in the events in Bolivia or that the US government wants to designate drug trafficking organisations as terrorist groups for a military intervention in Mexico.

Operation Condor was a US-backed, coordinated intelligence operation from 1968 to 1989, formally institutionalised in 1975, between right-wing Latin American dictatorships, whose intelligence services illegally tracked down, kidnapped, murdered or forcefully disappeared thousands of political opponents across the continent. At least 50,000 killings were documented by the perpetrators. Nothing of a similar scale in any count has been suggested by any serious observer in these times.

Russia restored its relations with the West by doing everything contrary to the latter’s will

Over the last few years, Russia has improved its position in world politics because it did not follow the others’ rules and orders. This was risky, but the strategy of compliance with the West’s instructions would definitely run Russia into a catastrophe. Many of the “Kremlin’s adventures” such as counter-sanctions, the military operation in Syria, import substitutions, construction of pipelines which the West initially ridiculed, have brought fruits and consequently contributed to the restoration of relations with the Western countries.

Disproof

The claim about Western plans to run Russian into a catastrophe is consistent with a recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about the West's deliberate anti-Russian activities. It misinterprets the dynamics of Russian-Western relations by alleging that they improved as a result of Russian activities in military and economic fields such as the introduction of counter-sanctions or assisting Bashar al-Assad in the Syrian war.

In fact, the EU has unanimously voted for continuation of the sanctions against Russia since they were introduced in 2014 and the US made sanctions against Russia stricter in August 2019. Therefore, Russian-Western relations have hardly been restored due to Russian military and economic measures as the articles claim.