DISINFO: Russia's retreat from Kharkiv region was a well-planned withdrawal
  • Outlet: obieqtivi.info (archived)*
  • Date of publication: September 14, 2022
  • Reported in: Issue 309
  • Countries / regions discussed: Russia, Ukraine
War in Ukraine Invasion of Ukraine

DISINFO: Russia's retreat from Kharkiv region was a well-planned withdrawal


This retreat of Russia is interesting in the sense that no Russian soldiers were killed, not even wounded. It makes you think this was a well-planned retreat. What purpose and task it serves we will see very soon.

There was such a retreat that not a single [Russian] soldier was killed. It was deliberate. This may also be a tactical move of the Russian army.


This is a motif from a broader disinformation campaign conducted by the Kremlin, aiming to prove that its “special military operation” in Ukraine is actually going according to a plan. Contrary to that, Putin's army retreat in Kharkiv is seen as one of the biggest military challenges in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine yet.

Ukrainian forces have reconquered over 3,000 square kilometers of territory over the past week — more than all the territory Russia had added to its military occupation in the six months since the start of the invasion. Furthermore, Ukrainian troops exerted pressure on the retreating Russian forces, advancing further into occupied territory and sent even more of the Kremlin’s troops fleeing ahead of the Ukrainian counter-offensive actions.

In addition, there is evidence that Ukrainian citizens accused of helping Russian military units in the Donbas region and the neighboring Kharkiv province are also fleeing from the recently liberated territories.

Further proof of Russia not retreating deliberately from the region as a ruse to fool the Ukrainians are claims from Ukrainian soldiers, stating that there are huge amounts of vehicles and ammunition left behind the fleeing Russian army.

See similar disinformation claim - Russian retreat around Kharkiv not a military failure but a deliberate ruse.

Further cases regarding the military activities in Ukraine claim Ukrainian army has been attacking civilian areas in Donetsk with artillery for eight years, Russia destroyed the echelons of military equipment in Chaplyne railway station and Ukrainians dress in Russian uniform and loot houses in Donbas.


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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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