Disinfo: Far-right influence on Ukrainian politics grew after 2014 Kyiv coup

Summary

The influence of far-right groups on Ukrainian politics has grown since the 2014 Western-backed coup d’etat in Kyiv, which led to armed conflict in the eastern regions of the country.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narratives painting the 2013-14 Euromaidan protests as a violent coup d'etat; exaggerating the influence of Nazi/Fascist/far-right actors on Ukrainian politics; blaming Kyiv for the unleashing of Russian armed aggression in east Ukraine.

The Euromaidan 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.

Traditionally, far-right groups have commanded minimal support among the Ukrainian public.

Far-right groups enjoyed a very limited presence during the protests and went on to obtain abysmal results in the 2014 presidential and parliamentary elections. During the 2019 election cycle, the far right managed to sustain an even more tremendous failure; the highest-rated nationalist candidate, Ruslan Koshulynskyy, won 1.62% of the vote whereas Svoboda won 2.16% of the national vote, falling far short of the 5% minimum guaranteeing entry into parliament.

The armed conflict in east Ukraine is a well-documented act of Russian aggression against sovereign Ukrainian territory, ongoing since February 2014. See the full debunk here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 180
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 20/01/2020
  • Language/target audience: English
  • Country: Ukraine
  • Keywords: Euromaidan, Donbas, Coup, War in Ukraine, Nazi/Fascist
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Ukraine and Georgia are Western tools against Russia

Europe and the US have long been using Georgia and Ukraine as leverage on Russia.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative alleging that Ukraine and Georgia are controlled by the West and about the West’s strategy of encircling Russia.

Ukraine and Georgia are sovereign, independent states, not controlled by any foreign government, and without any anti-Russian policies. They are not tools against Russia in the hands of either the EU or the US. The EU and the US bilateral relations with Ukraine and Georgia are established on an equal basis.

Poland and Baltic states distort the truth about WWII

Warsaw declared the USSR responsible for starting WWII together with Hitler’s Germany, while the Baltic states constantly remind the public that the USSR allegedly occupied their territories instead of liberating them. These statements have no historical basis and are made only out of political ambition.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the WWII and Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. See other disinformation cases of historical revisionism.

On the 23rd of August 1939, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany signed a non-aggression (Molotov-Ribbentrop) pact, whose secret protocols divided the territories belonging to Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland and Romania into Soviet and Nazi spheres of influence.

Soviet troops were not able to support the Warsaw Uprising

The Warsaw uprising of 1944 was planned without prior notice to, or coordination with, the Soviet Government. In the end, the rebels surrendered and the Germans destroyed the city. The Russian version, which continues the Soviet one, does not deny that Moscow was not enthusiastic about the course of the London Poles and did not really want to put its soldiers at risk for the sake of the London cause. Nevertheless, there was no chance to continue the operation. If one looks at the map and analyses the configuration of the front and forces, then the question arises: was it possible at that moment to conduct a successful offensive operation, or was it necessary to temporarily switch to defence?

Disproof

A common Soviet and Russian disinformation narrative trying to prove that Soviet troops could not have supported the Warsaw Uprising due to numerous objective reasons (such as the lack of necessary forces, overstretched supply lines, lack of communication with the Polish Home Army and the Polish Government in London, etc.).

This message should be perceived as a part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism. According to historian Norman Davies, there is a consensus among the majority of Polish and Western historians that it was a political decision of Stalin not to support the Uprising in order to let German troops destroy the forces of the Home Army (which tried to re-establish the independent Polish state).