Disinfo: The coronavirus “war” is forcing Western ultraliberals to finally care for vulnerable people

Summary

We are facing a war that makes us realise what is really important in life and forces us to pay attention to the most valuable and vulnerable in our society, our elders – our parents and grandparents, the bearers of life experiences and wisdom. To those who, just a few weeks ago, were an obstacle in the Western ultraliberal world for the “prospective young generation” (read: the elderly single childless tattooed (bearded) uneducated children with smartphones and the greatest concern for their image on social networks).

Disproof

No evidence is given to support the claim that the elderly are an "obstacle" of younger generations in Western society. This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative targeting Western liberal-democratic values and portraying them as morally corrupt. The claim also invokes anti-LGBT insinuations, which are another recurring theme in pro-Kremlin disinformation related to the West's moral decay.

This messaging is also in line with the well-established pro-Kremlin strategy of portraying the West to as inferior to Russia in terms of values and morals. The narrative of “threatened values” is one of the most common disinformation 'master narratives' used by pro-Kremlin outlets - it is adapted to a wide range of topics and is typically used to discredit liberal Western attitudes towards the environment, women's rights, ethnic and religious minorities, and LGBTI groups, among others. For example, it is used to paint Western societies as depraved, seeking to destroy traditional values, and to promote deviant sexual behavior.

This case exemplifies how pro-Kremlin outlets adapt their preferred disinformation narratives to different contexts and especially to crisis situations like the current coronavirus pandemic.

For similar cases, see here, here, and here.

 

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 190
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 23/03/2020
  • Language/target audience: Czech
  • Country: Czech Republic
  • Keywords: coronavirus, Western values, European values, The West, LGBT

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.

see more

Under the guise of force majeure Europe and Germany became autocratic

All the political field has shifted to the right. But those who claim that this is pragmatic conservatism are wrong, this is a lie propagated by so-called mainstream propaganda outlets. It is autocracy under the disguise of force majeure circumstances. Europe has become autocratic, Germany has become absolutely autocratic.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation about Germany and EU. Consistent with earlier pro-Kremlin disinformation claims that COVID-19 is a pretext to gain control over the world's population. 

EU Member States have adopted measured to curb the outbreak of COVID-19, that are in line with national laws.

COVID-19 originates from Chinese laboratory in Wuhan

Chinese scientists fear that the new coronavirus could actually originate from a laboratory 300 metres away from the market in Wuhan, as research on infected bats was carried out in this laboratory.

Disproof

A recurring conspiracy theory that echoes pro-Kremlin disinformation about the artificial creation of COVID-19.

There is no evidence that the coronavirus (COVID-19) was created in laboratories. COVID-19 comes from a family of viruses that include the common cold and viruses such as SARS and MERS. Coronaviruses are known to circulate in mammals and birds, and scientists have already suggested that COVID-19 originally came from bats. One of the previous coronaviruses that caused severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, spread from bats to civet cats to humans.

“PR infection”: Greta Thunberg is using COVID-19 for public relations

Greta Thunberg’s announcement that she felt the symptoms of COVID-19 is the first case of a “PR infection”, that is using the pandemic to regain some of the public spotlight, that has been recently fading. It is means to again draw some attention to herself.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation smearing Greta Thunberg.

Greta Thunberg announced on Instagram that she has been self-isolating as she had felt some of the COVID-19 symptoms, in line with the advise of the public health authorities.