Disinfo: NATO uses COVID-19 to mobilise Western military forces against Russia

Summary

NATO uses COVID-19 to mobilise Western military forces against Russia. The COVID-19 pandemic, which has been announced by the World Health Organisation, has led to Western military forces mobilising against Russia. However, the Western “non-brothers” always forget that combat readiness is a normal condition for Russians.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about NATO, aggressive, anti-Russian Western policies and about coronavirus as a biological weapon. According to the World Health Organization, coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans. Researches done so far show that it is a virus named ”zoonotic”, meaning it is transmitted between animals and people. Read more about Coronavirus here. NATO has repeatedly emphasised that its course is in no way directed against Russia, nor any other state. NATO’s objectives are set out in the 1949 Washington Treaty which forms the legal basis of the alliance. The treaty states that parties “are resolved to unite their efforts for collective defence and for the preservation of peace and security”. NATO’s main mission is not to prepare for war, as Russian media claim, but rather to maintain stability and appropriate levels of defence readiness in its member countries. See more examples of disinformation about Russia and NATO.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 191
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 19/03/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia
  • Keywords: coronavirus, NATO
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Russia prevents the Black Sea from turning into NATO's zone of influence

The security guarantor of Crimea is already a nuclear power, Russia. The Crimean peninsula has turned into a solid military, naval fist. Which is also a powerful blow to NATO’s plans to turn the Black Sea into NATO’s “internal sea” or zone of influence. Crimea will never again be a part of Ukraine.

Disproof

The alleged encroachments of NATO on the Ukrainian peninsula are among the most common disinformation narratives, to justify the illegal annexation of Crimea. Russia's disinformation uses all sorts of controversial arguments: geopolitical, military, historical, to defend the Russian annexation of Crimea. There is no evidence that NATO was planning to deploy weapons system in Crimea, which was part of a sovereign Ukraine.

NATO expansion is also a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative. NATO does not "expand" in the imperialistic sense described by the Kremlin leadership and Russian state media, but instead considers the applications of candidate countries that want to join the defensive alliance based on their own national will. NATO enlargement is not directed against Russia. The claim that NATO was planning to base ships and missiles in Crimea is fiction. The idea has never been proposed, suggested or discussed within NATO. In the Statement by the North Atlantic Council on Crimea on 18 March 2019, NATO condemned Russia's ongoing and wide-ranging military build-up in Crimea, and expressed concern by Russia's efforts and stated plans for a further military build-up in the Black Sea region. Here are another cases claiming that Crimea was supposed to become a NATO base, or Crimean population was always eager to reconnect with their Russian homeland, or "one of the main goals, why Maidan was conceived: to have a NATO base in Crimea", Crimea reconnected with Russia to avoid NATO troops. Further debunking on The Insider.

The French government systematically lied to the population

In France for 50-60 years when there were health crises, the government lied to society. When Chernobyl happened in 1984, the German authorities told to be careful and to protect oneself, and the French minister said all is well, the Chernobyl cloud stopped at the French border.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative that Western governments cannot be trusted to manage a major accident/crisis. The narrative that the "Chernobyl cloud stopped at the French borders" is so well spread in France that is accepted as a cliché. In the early days after the nuclear accident, in April 1986 not 1984 as stated on Sputnik, environmental associations and journalists spread the idea that the French Minister of Health or Pierre Pellerin, the Director of the Central Service for Protection against Ionising Radiation, said that the "cloud stopped at the French borders". This statement was never made. Pierre Pellerin won several defamation cases against NGOs and Media on this matter. Newspapers such as Le Parisien or Le Point admitted their mistake and explained how this false rumour started. See a previous case implying that the French government is incompetent.

Mainstream media ignores the fake news campaign against Russia

No mainstream media outlet is reporting a massive ‘coronavirus’ fake news campaign, which targeted Russia itself. Apparently, this does not fit the narrative. This campaign comes jointly with an increase of activity of various Western-funded anti-government organizations inside Russia.

Disproof

An unfounded claim and a recurring pro-Kremlin narrative presenting all activities of NGOs, media or civil society activists as measures to overthrow the power in post-Soviet states.