Disinfo: The New York Times blames Putin for US health system collapse in face of novel coronavirus

Summary

The US keeps breaking negative records of infected and deaths from coronavirus, but instead of blaming the US health system or the lack of measures adopted by the authorities at the beginning of the pandemic, the New York Times is already pointing to Putin. According to the newspaper, over the decades the Russian president has made the collapse of the US health system and the loss of confidence of Americans in their doctors his personal motivation, undermining the healthcare month after month and year after year through anti-vaccination campaigns and other strategies until its final collapse. The article uses arguments such as that the Kremlin envies the number of Nobel Prizes awarded to US scientists so it tried to destroy its foundations. The fact that this kind of articles always point to Russia after a concrete problem exploded suggests that their aim is to find a scapegoat and divert attention from the real causes.

Disproof

This is a deliberate distortion of the original New York Times article, which doesn’t blame Russian President Vladimir Putin for an alleged collapse of the US health system in face of the coronavirus crisis, nor says that he has a personal motivation in provoking this collapse. Rather, it affirms that Russia has been promoting an anti-vaccination stance in the West and other public health disinformation issues for a long time and that Moscow’s aim is to portray American officials as downplaying the health alarms and thus posing serious threats to public safety. The NYTimes article also exposes the techniques used by the Kremlin to spread disinformation on health issues for over a decade, such as interviews in RT with experts that repeatedly claimed falsely that H1N1 flu or Ebola virus were bioengineered, among others. The Kremlin’s long-standing efforts to seed distrust in vaccination abroad have been well documented by EUvsDisinfo and other researchers, such as the George Washington University and Georgia’s National Centre for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC). The goal of attacking and misrepresenting the NYTimes article is to ridicule the claims about Russia’s involvement in this disinformation campaign and divert attention away from any responsibility, a frequently used disinformation technique in the Kremlin’s toolbox. You can see other examples of Russian-promoted disinformation on vaccines in our database, such as claims that they are not effective and their production is part of the agenda for a New World Order; that European countries where vaccination is not mandatory are more successful; that coronavirus vaccine is a big pharma fraud led by Bill Gates; that nano-chips for population control will be injected along with anti-coronavirus vaccines; or that those who survive the pandemic will be poisoned this way for population reduction purposes.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 193
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 15/04/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Spanish, Castilian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: US, Russia
  • Keywords: coronavirus, vaccination, The New York Times, Vladimir Putin
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150 tons of medical cargo disappeared from the Ukrainian superplane

If it is true that Ukrainian plane “Antonov” brought only 90 tons of cargo, it means that with a lifting capacity of 250 tons the plane used less than 1/3 (sic) of its transport capabilities. Kombinat Górniczo-Hutniczy Miedzi is the Polish state corporation responsible for the transaction. It paid 12 million zlotys. This is a gigantic mismanagement, for which someone should answer criminally. Thus, Internet users conclude that the fate of at least 150 tons of medical equipment is unknown.

Disproof

The conclusion in this article that "Poles wonder where the 150 tons of cargo go" is based on one Facebook post. Ukraine's An-225 Mriya plane (the world's largest transport aircraft) has delivered a record medical cargo from China to Poland - 100 tonnes, the press service of the Antonov Company has reported on Facebook. It notes that in China, about 100 tonnes of medicines, laboratory tests, medical masks and other remedies were loaded into the aircraft. As mentioned in Ukrainian media, the aircraft will deliver the rest of the cargo to Poland on the second flight. According to the Polish Ministry of State Assets, the Ukrainian giant will bring the country nearly 400 tons of medical cargo purchased from China. However, due to the fact that the aircraft is only capable of carrying up to 250 tons of cargo at a time, it will likely have to make at least two round trips to fulfill the Polish contract. See more cases trying to cast doubt on exchange and procurement of medical supplies in light of the coronavirus pandemic here.

The West needs to accept the status of Crimea as Russian and remove the sanctions

Nobody expects the Great and the Good of the West to openly admit they were wrong about Crimea, and that the region and its citizens are in fact immeasurably better-off than they would be had they been subjected to rule by Kiev. But there is usually a way out of such a dilemma, and one that can be gently implemented without embarrassment. All that the West needs to do is quietly accept the status of Crimea and remove anti-Russia sanctions without fanfare.

Disproof

This is recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation on the illegal annexation of Crimea. The illegal annexation of Crimea was a violation of the UN Charter, of the OSCE Charter and of Russia's obligations as a signatory of the Budapest agreement. No international body recognises the so-called referendum, announced on the 27th of February 2014, and held on 16th of March 2014. A year after the illegal annexation, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted that the plan to annex Crimea was ordered weeks before the so-called referendum. On 27 March 2014, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution in which it stated that the referendum in Crimea was not valid and could not serve as a basis for any change in the status of the peninsula. On 17 December 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea. The EU's policy of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol includes a set of restrictive measures against entities and individuals responsible for actions against Ukraine's territorial integrity. In March 2019, on the fifth anniversary of Crimea's illegal annexation, the EU reiterated its position of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol. The EU continues to stand in full solidarity with Ukraine, supporting its sovereignty and territorial integrity. Read similar cases claiming that Crimean people have expressed their desire to rejoin Russia in a democratic process and that Crimea never belonged to Ukraine.

Ultimate anti-coronavirus recipe: determination+honey+orange juice

A person with diabetes managed to defeat the deadly coronavirus with determination, optimism, the usage of honey, orange juice and some herbs.

The person looked for a solution to strengthen the immune system on the Internet and found many things like thyme, rosemary, honey, eucalyptus leaves, orange juice and herbal tea.

Disproof

There is no medical evidence to support the claim that thyme, rosemary, honey, eucalyptus leaves, orange juice and herbal tea can prevent against catching the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.

While common colds can be a result of a coronavirus, they're usually caused by a rhinovirus. Rhinoviruses are a family of viruses that are associated with upper respiratory tract infections. Thus, the mentioned "medicines" can be helpful in warding off symptoms of illnesses usually caused by rhinoviruses. But, that doesn't necessarily mean that they are effective against COVID-19.