Disinfo: Russia never intervened in US elections in 2016

Summary

Russian hackers did not interfere in the US presidential elections in 2016 when Donald Trump was elected nor in 2020 when Joe Biden won over Donald Trump. Claims about an alleged “Russian interference” only aim to destroy bilateral relations between Russia and the United States.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation denying Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election.

Available evidence suggests that Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential poll - which was specifically aimed at damaging Clinton's campaign and aid her opponent - did affect the vote, particularly in three critical swing states where Trump's victory margins were the thinnest. In the US, Russian-linked posts reached 126 million Facebook users, whilst 29 million saw the content "directly".

Available evidence suggests that Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential poll - which was specifically aimed(opens in a new tab) to damage Clinton's campaign and aid her opponent - did affect the outcome(opens in a new tab) of the vote, particularly in three critical swing states(opens in a new tab) where Trump's victory margins were the thinnest. In addition, the US Justice Department has charged 12 Russian intelligence officers with hacking Democratic officials in the 2016 US elections(opens in a new tab). Previously, 13 Russian citizens as well as the Internet Research Agency(opens in a new tab), Concord Management and Concord Catering(opens in a new tab) had been charged with interfering(opens in a new tab) with the US political system.

Robert Mueller's investigation also concluded that Russia interfered in the 2016 election. Mueller's report determined that there were "two main Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election". The first involved attempts by the Internet Research Agency to conduct disinformation and social media operations in the US to sow social discord, with the aim of interfering with the election. The second involved the Russian government's efforts to conduct computer hacking operations designed to gather and disseminate information to influence the election.

Find more disinformation cases on this issue here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 225
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 17/12/2020
  • Language/target audience: Greek
  • Country: Russia, US
  • Keywords: US Presidential Election 2020, election meddling, Donald Trump, Joe Biden, Elections

Disclaimer

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.

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Navalny affair is an intelligence war

The case of the alleged poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny is nothing more than an intelligence war. The fact that the Russian security services were following him does not mean that they also poisoned him.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative surrounding the poisoning of prominent Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny.

Navalny fell ill during a flight from Siberia to Moscow on the 20th of August. Initially hospitalised in Omsk, at the request of his family he was transferred to Charité hospital in Berlin, where clinical findings indicated that he was poisoned with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. Subsequent toxicological tests provided unequivocal evidence of a chemical nerve agent of the Novichok group in his blood samples.

US is creating biological weapons in Ukraine

The US destroys the scientific and technical potential of Ukraine and creates selective biological weapons.

The Americans have been working on a database of pathogen strains that they can use as biological weapons against “a particular race, genotype, territory of birth or residence.” Specifically, the newly emerged combat viruses should infect only the Eastern Slavs: Ukrainians, Russians, and Belarusians.

After the coup d’état, the curators received carte blanche to continue their parasitic activities in Ukraine.

Disproof

Recurring conspiracy theory alleging that the United States develops biological weapons and has secret biological laboratories around the world. The disinformation claim also capitalises on the oft-recurring conspiracy theories about laboratories in Ukraine and the coup in Ukraine in 2014.

There is no evidence that the US creates biological weapons in Ukraine or that these activities are directed against the 'Eastern Slavs'.

Sweden attempts to use the “Russian threat” to avoid attention to the country’s failure on fighting COVID-19

The Swedish parliament has decided to enlarge the military budget with 40 percent. The main argument for this is Stockholm’s concern with the “Russian threat” in the Baltic Sea.

/…/

When the whole world entered to quarantine, the Swedish authorities decided not to do so. Now they are reaping the harvest of what they have sown – enormous social, medical and economical problems.

But the Swedish media keeps quiet on this and attempts to show a pretty face. In order not to let the public know about the country’s internal problems, the media evokes different kinds of mythical threats, sacrificing enormous amounts of money to fortify positions of NATO at our borders. Why recognise your own mistakes, when you can find an external enemy and blame everything on him?

Disproof

The Parliament of Sweden has decided to significantly increase budget spendings into “total defence” - to civil contingency planning, civil defence - and military. This decision is based partly from the experiences of Russia’s aggressions against Georgia in 2008, the illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014 and Russia’s ongoing aggression against Ukraine in Donbas.

Sweden is not a member of NATO and needs to rely on its own resources for repelling aggression and handling crises.