Disinfo: Mueller report gives no evidence of Russian meddling in US elections

Summary

The recently published report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller cites no real evidence of Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election. Statements about Moscow’s alleged attempts to “subvert democracy” in the United States are a clear case of Russophobia. The Mueller investigation has found no Russia-Trump collusion.

Disproof

The story is the latest link in a chain of denials which Moscow has issued regarding its involvement in the 2016 presidential election in the United States and employs the long-established charge of Russophobia which the Kremlin uses to deflect criticism, however legitimate. Before the Mueller report was published, Russian meddling in the 2016 election had already been established by US intelligence agencies. Thus, the Special Investigation was primarily concerned with "whether any Americans […] joined the Russian conspiracies to influence the election" (p.2). The claim that the report provides no evidence of Trump-Russia collusion is also spurious. The RT segment never clarifies that gathering evidence of "collusion" -- which is not a legal concept -- fell outside the scope of the investigation. The aim of the probe was not merely to ascertain contacts between the Trump Campaign and Russia-linked individuals during the election period, but to establish whether these interactions were deliberate enough on the part of Trump Campaign officials to sustain charges of conspiracy (p. 2). In fact, the report explicitly identifies "numerous links between individuals with ties to the Russian government and individuals associated with the Trump Campaign" (p. 9). A number of these individuals later "made false statements about those contacts and took other steps to obstruct" the probe (p. 180). The report's conclusions therefore do nothing to absolve the Russian government.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 146
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 20/04/2019
  • Outlet language(s) English
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: US, Russia
  • Keywords: election meddling, Robert Mueller, Democracy, Manipulated elections/referendum, Donald Trump, Conspiracy theory, Elections
see more

Facebook is a project of the Soros Foundation, financed by National Security Agency

Facebook is a project of the Soros Foundation, which is financed by the National Security Agency. Hence, Facebook’s global objective is to collect personal data for the purpose of the American security service.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin conspiracy about the US and social media. The claims are ungrounded. After the leaks by NSA contractor Edward Snowden revealed that the NSA collected data from Facebook users, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckeberg expressed his disapproval of the NSA’s actions and said that he had spoken to then president Barack Obama by phone to “express [his] frustration over the damage the government is creating for all of our futures.” See earlier disinformation messages alleging excessive control over Facebook by American security bodies here and here.

Behind the curtains of the Ukrainian election: Kyiv plans to celebrate Hitler's birthday

Under the guise of elections, Ukraine is consolidating Nazism and introducing slavery for the Donbas region. Nazis from Europe, from Finland to the Czech Republic, are organizing events to celebrate Hitler’s birthday. One of these events is the festival “Fortress Europe”, taking place on the 22 April.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative on the elections in Ukraine and Nazism in Ukraine. Ukraine is not organising or hosting any events connected with Adolf Hitler's birthday. The rock festival "Fortress Europe", planned for June, is not an official, state-supported event.

The debates between Zelenskiy and Poroshenko didn’t raise much interest among Ukrainian voters

Not many people were in the stadium, so the debates between Zelenskiy and Poroshenko evidently didn’t raise much interest among Ukrainian voters. Kyiv’s Olympic stadium can host around 70,000 people, but only around 15,000-20,000 came to watch the debates. For almost 4 million people living in Kyiv, the debates did not attract interest, despite the extensive media hysteria.

Disproof

According to the survey of the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS), the debates between presidential candidates Volodymyr Zelenskiy and Petro Poroshenko were watched or listened to by 80% of Ukrainians in some form or another. The majority, 58% of respondents, watched the broadcast on television, while 20% watched or listened to the broadcast online, and 1.5% on the radio. Only 20% of respondents did not watch the broadcast. Google Trends shows that on 14 April 2019, the second most-searched topic in Google Ukrainian was "Debates 14th of April", with more than 200k searches (second only to “Game of Thrones” in first place). On April 19, when the debates took place, the five top-searched topics in Google Ukrainian were all about politics. The topic of the debates again featured in the top 5 on that day.