Blaming Russian hackers is Macron’s favourite excuse for his country’s problems

Summary

[Blaming] Russian hackers is Macron’s favourite excuse for the country’s problems. He says they tried to hack his elections, Russian trolls spoiled his reputation, Russian bots were convincing yellow vests to protest. French special services looked for Russian trace all over, and found nothing. But that did not even matter.

Disproof

There have been several reports about the role of social media accounts connected to Russia in amplifying the yellow vests protests. The investigation, as announced by French authorities, started on December 8 and is ongoing. No evidence given for the alleged French conclusions.

There has been evidence of Kremlin behind hacking French elections.

Pro-Kremlin outlets often try to convince the audience that some claims are only made to distract us from the real problems. This is applied in this case, and we have also seen it, for example, in the Skripal poisoning case.

 

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 140
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 10/03/2019
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, France
  • Keywords: yellow vests, election meddling, Emmanuel Macron
  • Outlet: Itogi Nedeli @ NTV (44.15 - 44.30)
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Yulia and Sergey Skripal held hostage in UK

Yulia and Sergey Skripal are isolated and held against their will, given the few public appearances the two poisoning survivors have made since April 2018.

Disproof

No evidence given. Russia's long-running claim that the UK Government is keeping the Skripals in prison-like conditions fits the broader pro-Kremlin narrative painting the Salisbury poisoning as an anti-Russian conspiracy.

The story draws on a recent report published by the Russian Embassy in London, which cites the Skripals' low media profile as evidence of their unlawful detention. The claim shifts the burden of disproving Moscow's unfounded accusation on the UK, and is thus an argument from ignorance.

EU launches a Russian-language TV channel

The European Union opens its own Russian-language television channel with film crews in all Russian regions. The main task of the channel will be to bring the Western interpretation of the events taking place in the world to the Russian-speaking population. Such initiatives demonstrate the helplessness of the information campaign the West is trying to launch in Russia.

Disproof

The EU is not working on such project.

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative on the West trying to impose its values and spreading propaganda in Russia. Not only the West, but also Ukraine has been accused of waging information war against Russia.

Estonian nationalists demand Russia to return Ivangorod

The Conservative People’s Party of Estonia (EKRE), whose representatives made their way into the new government of the country, put forward a bill containing a requirement to challenge the territorial affiliation of Ivangorod and part of the Pskov region.

Disproof

The elections in Estonia took place on March 3, 2019, and the government has not yet been formed.

The draft bill was issued months before elections in 2018 and it does not mention Ivangorod; its aim was to "discontinue the ratification of the border treaty between the Estonian Republic and Russian Federation and revoke the signature from the aforementioned treaty." The draft bill was rejected.