Disinfo: Russia helped reduce the intensity of the local conflict in eastern Ukraine

Summary

With Russia’s help, it became possible to achieve a drastic reduction in bombing intensity in eastern Ukraine, and to generally maintain a ceasefire between the parties of the local Ukrainian conflict.

Disproof

A recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the war in Ukraine, presenting it as a “civil war” in Donbas.

The war in eastern Ukraine is not a "local conflict" but a well-documented act of aggression by Russian armed forces, ongoing since February 2014.

The European Union stated in July 2014 that:

"arms and fighters continue flowing into Ukraine from the Russian Federation".

At the NATO Summit in Wales in September 2014, NATO leaders condemned in the strongest terms Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine and demanded Russia to stop and withdraw its forces from Ukraine and from the country’s border. NATO leaders also demanded Russia comply with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities; refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine; halt the flow of weapons, equipment, people and money across the border to the separatists; and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border.

In 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted Russia's military presence in Ukraine.

See similar disinformation cases alleging that Donbas rebelled because Russians in Ukraine were subjected to ethnocide, that after Euromaidan Ukraine lost its sovereignty and is falling apart, that the Euromaidan coup led to civil war in Donbas, or that Ukraine committed a crime by attacking its citizens in Donbas in 2014.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 225
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 29/12/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Arabic
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: Ukraine, Eastern Ukraine, Ukrainian statehood, War in Ukraine
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The real power in Ukraine is the US embassy

The real power in Ukraine is the US embassy. “If they (the US) need to push something, they summon the Ukrainian minister, give him instructions, then make a joint communiqué, then take a photo.”

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine not backed up with evidence, which is often claimed to be under external control from the US.

The US does not control Ukraine. Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are respected by most of the free world, confirmed by resolutions of the United Nations.

The Arab Spring was organised by the West

18 December 2010 is considered to be the starting point of the riots, unrest and uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa collectively referred to as the Arab Spring.

US and transnational foundations for democracy-promotion were operating in many of the countries where the Arab Spring began. Their activists, who had been trained years before, were at the epicentre of events and passed on colour revolution techniques to the local population. These activists had previously developed such techniques in the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Balkans.

But the attempt by the US and the West to reshape the Middle East and impose Western democracy on the region failed. It is important to note that ISIS emerged in 2013 as a result of the Arab Spring.

Disproof

Disinformation about the Arab Spring presented with no evidence. This article’s message is consistent with pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about popular protests around the world allegedly incited and funded by the US and other Western states, including colour revolutions in post-Soviet states, the Arab Spring revolts, Euromaidan in Ukraine, protests in Catalonia and others. This narrative claims that protests, disorders and civil uprisings are never manifestations of popular discontent but are "colour revolutions" directed and funded by Western intelligence services or other Western actors in order to destabilise targeted foreign states and bring about regime change.

When the Arab Spring revolts broke out throughout Northern Africa and the Middle East beginning in 2010-2011, Russian media increasingly spread conspiracy theories portraying the uprisings as nefarious “color revolutions” hatched in the United States. Senior Russia security and military officials claimed that the Arab Spring, which got much of its initial traction through social media such as Facebook and Twitter, was a new subversive methodology designed by Western intelligence services to destabilise societies and bring about regime change, first in the Arab world and subsequently in Russia itself.