Disinfo: NATO exploits non-existent “Russian threat” to increase its presence close to Russian borders

Summary

NATO is aware that Russia has no intention of attacking anyone, but it is exploiting rhetoric about a non-existent “Russian threat” in order to increase NATO’s presence close to Russia’s borders.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about the “Russian threat” as a false idea created and spread by NATO and the US and NATO encircling Russia. Since the Ukraine crisis, NATO has been genuinely concerned about the security challenges posed by Russia to Transatlantic security. For a similar case, see here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 155
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 22/06/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Italian
  • Country: Poland, Baltic states, Russia
  • Keywords: security threat, Eastern Ukraine, Hybrid war, Crimea, NATO
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Ukraine is waiting for an ecological disaster because of the water blockade of the Crimea

The Ukrainian blockade of the North-Crimean Canal harms residents. The Radensk village in the Kherson district and the Mayachka village in the Oleshkovsky district are drowning. The Kherson authorities and Kyiv officials are to blame for everything. The worst is still to come: the first ecological disaster is the salting of the fertile land, the second is dehydration, the third is an ecological disaster when there is surplus water in the villages, and they get buried.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine and Crimea. Flooded houses in the Kherson region have nothing to do with the blockade of the North-Crimean Canal. At the beginning of June, there was heavy rainfall in the region, which led to the flooding of many households, including the villages mentioned. In its daily report of 7th June 2019, the State Emergency Service of Ukraine noted that "on 6 June, as a result of intense precipitation, 150 dormitories in the village of Novaya Mayachka of the Oleshkovsky district were flooded. At the moment, the Kherson regional council asked the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine to provide money in the state budget for the construction of a new drainage system in the village of Novaya Mayachka, which was damaged by flooding. The consequences of the water blockade of the Crimea refer to occupied Crimea, and not to mainland Ukraine. More disinformation cases on this issue can be found here. Further debunking by StopFake.

NATO intimidates EU residents with tales of the Russian threat, even though Russia is a peace-loving country.

NATO intimidates residents of the European Union with tales of the Russian threat. Over the past 25 years, Russia has not attacked any country, so this is another European horror story.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about peaceful Russia that contains disinformation about the war in Ukraine and war in Georgia. Since 1991 Russia was involved in several international conflicts, including intervention in neighboring states, such as Georgia in 2008 and Ukraine in 2014. Many international organizations condemned the Russian occupation of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, see e.g. the OSCE statements here and here and European Parliament's declaration. More information to Russian invasion in Georgia is provided here. It was also Russia that provoked a war in Ukraine. The Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has stated that “the information available suggests that the situation within the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol amounts to an international armed conflict between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. This international armed conflict began at the latest on 26 February 2014 when the Russian Federation deployed members of its armed forces to gain control over parts of the Ukrainian territory without the consent of the Ukrainian Government. The European Union stated in July 2014 that "arms and fighters continue flowing into Ukraine from the Russian Federation". Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted military presence of Russia in Ukraine in 2015. In 2014 Russia also annexed a part of Ukrainian territory - Crimean peninsula. The so-called referendum on the peninsula was organised in a matter of weeks by a self-proclaimed Crimean leadership lacking democratic legitimacy and installed by armed Russian military personnel following the seizure of public buildings. The EU does not recognise it. The United Nations General Assembly Resolution No. 68/262, adopted on 27 March 2014 and supported by 100 states, clearly says that Russia's actions in Crimea as well as the referendum held in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea violate international law. Any decision relating to Ukraine's sovereignty or sovereign choices can only be taken without undue external pressure.

The unrest in Georgia is staged to fuel anti-Russian tensions and create instability on the Russian border

The recent unrest in Georgia has been staged in order to further fuel anti-Russian tensions or even change one anti-Russian government to another one, the very anti-Russian government. The destabilization of Georgia will also negatively impact the situation in the Caucasus in general, thus creating a new point of instability on the Russian border.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory, presented without evidence, in line with a trope, claiming "The West" to be behind different kinds of protests - see other examples here.