Disinfo: Joe Biden's administration uses Russophobia to limit America's gun rights

Summary

Joe Biden's administration uses Russophobia to limit America's gun rights. The latest sanctions against Russia go beyond trying to tarnish the image of the country through unproven accusations, they are a clear attack against the Republican Party and the National Rifle Association. As a response to the alleged “poisoning of Alexei Navalny with Novichok”, the Biden Administration imposed a 12-month ban on the “permanent import of fire weapons or ammunitions fabricated or stored in Russia”. As usually happens with US sanctions, no evidence was provided to back the accusations. When it comes to use Russophobia as a geopolitical weapon of last resort, Democrats and Republicans are reading exactly the same script.

Disproof

Allegations of “Russophobia” are a frequent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative to deflect any criticism for Russia’s illicit actions. In this case, it also aims to frame sanctions by the Biden Administration as a domestic partisan issue against gun rights.

The US imposed additional sanctions on Russia on 20 August 2021 over its use of a Novichok nerve agent in the poisoning of Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny the previous year. And contrary to the claim, these accusations have been proven beyond any doubt.

There is unequivocal evidence showing that Navalny was deliberately poisoned in an assassination attempt, as established by initial clinical findings at the Charité hospital which indicated that he had been intoxicated with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. Subsequent toxicological tests established the presence of a Novichok-type chemical nerve agent in Navalny's blood.

On 14 December 2020, a special investigation by Bellingcat, The Insider, CNN and Der Spiegel identified members of the Russian FSB unit involved in the attempt on Navalny’s life. According to the New York Times, the report was also consistent with the information on the case gathered by German intelligence services. Bellingcat also provided a detailed account of the methods used to identify the FSB operatives. A week later, on 21 December, Navalny disclosed a recorded conversation in which a member of the suspected FSB poisoning squad describes how his unit carried out, and attempted to clean up evidence of, the poisoning of Alexey Navalny.

See other examples of similar disinformation narratives in our database, such as claims that an anti-Russian campaign is the real reason behind the expulsion of Russian diplomats from Czechia, that the ‘highly likely’ argument is often used to spread lies about Russia, that only caffeine and alcohol were found in Alexei Navalny’s blood, or that the US wanted to use Navalny’s poisoning to block Russia's vaccine against coronavirus.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 257
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 30/08/2021
  • Article language(s) Spanish
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: US, Russia
  • Keywords: Alexei Navalny, Sanctions, Joe Biden, Russophobia
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Disinfo: Ukrainian soldiers are ready to fight for Donbas against Kyiv

If Kyiv attacks, the majority of Ukrainian soldiers will be ready to rush to help the Donbas republics.

Disproof

This is a recurring disinformation narrative aimed at undermining the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, as well as the integrity and cohesion of Ukraine's armed forces. The aim of the so-called abandoned Ukraine narrative is to discredit the efforts of Kyiv and the international community.

There has been no substantial evidence nor any indication that the Ukrainian army would take the side of the Kremlin-supported separatist forces in Donetsk and Luhansk.

Disinfo: The Eastern European “limitrophes” are geopolitical scum unable to protect their borders

[...] There are real states, which are capable of implementing all state functions, and then there is geopolitical scum or fictional countries that have formal attributes of statehood but which are not real states.

These countries include the post-Soviet limitrophe states separating Russia from the West. The pseudo-elites of these countries are not able to respond to any serious historical challenge such as overcoming the migration crisis, protecting the border and fighting the epidemic. They keep asking Western Europe and the United States for help because they cannot cope on their own. These countries are ruled by puppets – they are able only to speak about “stopping Russia” and vote for anti-Russian resolutions in the EU and UN.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about countries bordering Russia, in particular the Baltic States , Poland and Ukraine, as well as the EU and US presence in Europe.

Often presented as Western vassals or puppet states, the Baltic states, Ukraine and Poland are independent states, which shape their own foreign and domestic policies.
In terms of the current “migration crisis” orchestrated by the Belarusian authorities, Poland, Lithuania and Latvia actively defend their borders from hostile actions of Lukashenka, who decided to use migrants in order to undermine the security of the EU countries.

Disinfo: Ukraine is a quasi-state, a pro-Western appendage that cannot decide its own fate

Ukraine celebrated its Independence Day on 24 August [2021]. It was the 30th anniversary of the country's sovereignty.

It is a quasi-state entity, a pro-Western appendage that will neither become a full member of the EU nor an independent state that can decide its own fate. Because neither the US nor Europe simply need an independent Ukraine. They need a weak, kneeling country on the border with Russia, ready for anything. And Ukraine, unfortunately, is only now mastering this function.

Disproof

Recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative undermining Ukrainian statehood.

Ukraine is a sovereign and independent state with a democratically-elected president and parliament. The decisions are taken by the Ukrainian authorities: the President, the Verkhovna Rada, and the judiciary. Ukraine, as an independent country, has a functioning government and economy, it is a member of many international organisations, such as the United Nations and the Council of Europe, and a party to international agreements. Ukraine has bilateral diplomatic relations with the majority of countries.