Disinfo: Russia’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic has been very effective, while Western nations reacted hysterically and ineffectively to the pandemic

Summary

Russia’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic has been very effective, while Western nations have reacted hysterically to the pandemic. The number of deaths from COVID-19 in Russia has been inferior to those in Western countries.

In Russia the epidemic is under control, there are effective anti-COVID 19 medicines and there is the Sputnik V vaccine, which has no side-effects. Now Russia is gradually lifting restrictions and reopening everything. Russia’s extraordinary handling of the pandemic is due to the strength of the Russian people (the Russian super-ethnos) and to the fact that Vladimir Putin is a virile leader with nerves of steel. In Western societies, instead, the leaders are weak and unable to cope with problems and crises, and the people are weak and childish.

Disproof

This a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that Russia has been much more effective in combating the Covid-19 pandemic than Western countries, which have reacted “hysterically” to the pandemic. The message contained in the article is also consistent with the recurring pro-Kremlin narrative portraying Western societies as decadent and inhabited by weak feminised men, males who have renounced traditional virile virtues, and that Western leaders are likewise weak and effeminate (in contrast to Putin, depicted as a strong, effective and virile leader).

There are no grounds for claiming that Russia's response to the pandemic has been any more robust than that of any European state. On the contrary, as of 11 January 2021, Russia was the worst-affected European country with 3,951,233 confirmed infections and fourth worst-affected globally.

In late December 2020, after months of doctoring statistics and boasting about low mortality rates, the Kremlin finally admitted that the actual death toll was more than three times higher than previously reported, with over 186,000 coronavirus-related deaths between January and November 2020. This would make Russia's mortality numbers by far the highest in Europe and third-highest in the world, behind only the United States and Brazil.

According to some studies, data on excess deaths in Russia in 2020 paints a much bleaker picture of the Covid‐19 death toll than the official daily updated number.

Furthermore, there is no evidence to support the article’s sweeping claim that Western societies are inhabited by “weak” and “childish” people. Nor is there evidence to support the claim that Russian president Vladimir Putin is a stronger, more effective and more “virile” leader than any Western statesman.

Read similar cases claiming that Russia is much more effective in combating COVID 19 than European countries and that Russia is the world’s best prepared country to deal with the second coronavirus wave

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 231
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 02/02/2021
  • Language/target audience: Italian, English
  • Country: Russia
  • Keywords: Sputnik V, coronavirus, health, vaccination, Western values, Vladimir Putin

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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Disproof

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