Disinfo: NATO has continously expanded eastward despite promises made to Mikhail Gorbachev in 1990


In the last three decades, NATO has continuously expanded eastward to Russia’s borders, despite former Secretary of State James Baker’s pledge to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev that the West would not deploy troops east of reunified Germany in 1990.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative that NATO had promised Russia that it would not expand to the East and that Russia has been encircled by NATO.

NATO allies take decisions by consensus and these are recorded. There is no record of any decision taken by NATO about putting a halt to enlargement to the East. Personal assurances from individual leaders cannot replace Alliance consensus and do not constitute formal NATO agreements. Moreover, at the time of the alleged promise, the Warsaw Pact still existed, which by definition precluded any member of the Pact joining NATO. Its members did not agree on its dissolution until 1991. This was confirmed by Mikhail Gorbachev himself in an interview with Russia Beyond the Headlines:

“The topic of 'NATO expansion' was not discussed at all, and it was not brought up in those years. I say this with full responsibility. Not a single Eastern European country raised the issue, not even after the Warsaw Pact ceased to exist in 1991. Western leaders did not bring it up either.”

Central and Eastern European countries began seeking NATO membership in the early 1990s. NATO actively sought to create a cooperative environment that was conducive to enlargement while simultaneously building special relations with Russia.

NATO does not “expand”, rather, it considers the applications of candidate countries which want to join the Alliance based on their own national will. NATO enlargement is not directed against Russia.

Read similar articles claiming that the West promised Moscow that NATO will not expand eastwards and that despite promises made to Gorbachev, NATO expanded to include former USSR and Warsaw Pact countries.


  • Reported in: Issue 209
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 09/08/2020
  • Language/target audience: Italian
  • Country: Russia, US, Germany
  • Keywords: Mikhail Gorbachev, EU/NATO enlargement, Encircling Russia, USSR, Anti-Russian, NATO


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.

see more

Liberalism is a crime against humanity

Liberalism is a crime against humanity. Today liberals increasingly fuel civil wars, social injustice, occupations, colonisation, de-humanisation. To be a liberal means to be sub-human, a sick and perverse creature, a criminal. Like liberalism, communism and fascism were also totalitarian regimes. But while communism and fascism belong to the past, liberalism is a real danger, a criminal world order that is still in place.


Conspiracy theory. No evidence is provided to support the article’s claims.

This message is consistent with the recurring pro-Kremlin narrative that seeks to discredit liberalism claiming that the West’s liberal societies are totalitarian regimes ruled by “globalist elites” and “shadow governments” and that the liberal West and “globalist élites” are responsible for violent upheavals, military interventions, wars, anarchy and chaos throughout the world.

Macron opposed the scenario of Ukrainian coup in Belarus

French President Emmanuel Macron announced that he does not want a repeat of the Ukrainian scenario in Belarus, since the Maidan in Kyiv took place outside the electoral cycle. The European Union does not want Belarus to repeat the bitter experience of Ukraine, which is surprising since until recently the EU countries have been fervently supporting the Ukrainian coup.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Belarus. Also, it repeats the false narrative that Ukraine is under external control since the 2013-14 Euromaidan revolution.

The leaders of Germany and France discussed the worsening political crisis in Belarus. At a press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Macron said the European Union could try to mediate an end to the deep public discontent in the country. “Belarus needs a dialogue between the authorities, the opposition and civil society,” he noted. “We want the Belarusians to be able to organise this dialogue themselves, but the European Union is ready to accompany this process if Belarus agrees to its mediation.”

The Law of Spikelets in the USSR did not kill citizens, but defended socialist property from plunder

Anti-Soviet people like to talk about the allegedly innocent “tortured, arrested and executed” because of the Law of Spikelets, which allegedly provided for terrible punishment to all who, in difficult conditions, would dare to cut one wheat from the field in order to survive. And on this basis, they begin to assert (their opinion) about the “cruel” and “totalitarian” communist system, about the “crimes of Stalinism”, about the “sadism of the NKVDs”, etc. The law of 7 August 1932 spoke about the inadmissibility of plundering socialist property.


The decree of the Central Executive Committee and the Council of People's Commissars of the USSR "On the protection of property of state enterprises, collective farms and cooperatives and the strengthening of public (socialist) property" appeared on 7 August 1932. The authorship of the document is personally attributed to Joseph Stalin. Among the population, the decree of the Soviet leadership is better known as the Law of Spikelets.

The law became a consistent continuation of the Soviet policy of the so-called "collectivisation", which began back in the 1920s. It was the Law of Spikelets that became the last straw in plundering the population of the USSR: the Soviet regime created an artificial famine in Ukraine, which affected parts of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Moldova and Russia. The Stalinist regime used confiscation of food as a weapon of mass destruction - food was forcibly taken from farmers.