Disinfo: The Dutch justice system is comparable with the Inquisition

Summary

The trial in the case of MH17 resembles the Inquisition, which is trying to make Russia guilty of the crash of the Malaysian airliner, without any evidence. The fact that Holland is conducting the investigation is not in Russia’s favour. The Dutch justice system is comparable with the Inquisition, which prevents the suspect from proving his innocence. These methods were practised in Middle Ages, but apparently still exist in the Netherlands.

Disproof

One of the multiple pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives on the downing of Flight MH17, denying Russia's responsibility. The article claims that the trial in the case of MH17 resembles the 'Inquisition'; trying to make Russia guilty, without any evidence. The website claims this is a translation of an article by "Courthouse News". However, the article on Courthouse News does not claim this; it only compares the Dutch criminal law system with the criminal law system of the US:

"The Dutch legal system is an inquisitorial system where the court is involved in the investigation of the crime, as opposed to the adversarial system in the United States where two sides present competing evidence before an impartial judge or jury".

The inquisitorial system originates from continental Europe and is widely used around the world. More importantly, it does not prevent the suspect from proving his innocence. In this system, "the presiding judge is primarily responsible for supervising the gathering of the evidence necessary to resolve the case. He or she actively steers the search for evidence and questions the witnesses, including the respondent or defendant". Read more about the differences between the inquisitorial and adversarial systems here.

On 28 September 2016, the JIT announced that flight MH17 was shot down by a missile from the 9M38 series, which was launched by a BUK TELAR missile system. The system was transported from the Russian Federation to an agricultural field near the town of Pervomaiskiy in Eastern Ukraine, from where the missile was launched. After firing, the system, with one missing missile, went back to the Russian Federation. On 24 May 2018, the JIT announced its conclusion that the BUK TELAR used to shoot down MH17 came from the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade, a unit of the Russian armed forces from Kursk in the Russian Federation. On 10 July 2020, the Dutch government decided to bring Russia before the European Court of Human Rights for its role in the downing of Flight MH17. As stated on the government's website, it "attaches importance to continuing the meetings with Russia on the matter of state responsibility. The purpose of these meetings is to find a solution that does justice to the enormous suffering and damage cause by the downing of Flight MH17."

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 215
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 01/10/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: The Netherlands
  • Keywords: MH17
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The only inspiration for the Polish foreign policy are the phone calls from the US Embassy

The only inspiration for the Polish foreign policy is the orders from Washington, and more precisely – the phone calls from the US Ambassador Mosbacher. As long as this situation continues, the Polish diplomacy will not need any true inspiration.

Disproof

A common pro-Kremlin narrative on “lost sovereignty”, Poland and the US presence in Europe. The statement that the US authorities and the US Embassy in Warsaw have a decisive impact on the formation of the foreign policy of Poland is a conspiracy theory. Poland is an independent state, which shapes its own foreign and domestic policies. Read more about the key aspects of the Polish foreign policy here. See other messages promoting the statement that Poland is not a sovereign state - Poland is not a sovereign state; Poland is not perceived as a country with an independent foreign policy, and Poland is governed by the US Embassy. This message appeared in the same article as the claim that the Three Seas Initiative is an American project against the European Union.

The Three Seas Initiative is an American project against the European Union

No one outside Warsaw sees the success of the Three Seas Initiative – the Polish authorities present this “fantasy” project as if it already existed. There is one interesting sentence in the recent article of a new Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs Zbigniew Rau – he states that the Three Seas Initiative, this American project for Europe, is limited to the countries of the European Union. This statement is important as so far, Poland has claimed to be the Ambassador of non-EU countries – Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Belarus, etc. (what was in line with the American recommendations). Suddenly, [in the case of the Three Seas Initiative], Poland limits itself within the EU countries – in this situation, it becomes clear that the Three Seas Initiative is an American project against the European Union.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the US presence in Europe. The Three Seas Initiative is a forum of 12 countries from Central and Eastern Europe launched in 2015. The main goal of this Initiative is to promote better connectivity among the Member States, with a particular focus on infrastructure and energy. The main projects discussed at the forums of the Three Seas Initiative are the Via Carpathia, Baltic-Adriatic Corridor, Via Baltica, Rail Baltica and the LNG infrastructure in Poland and Croatia. See similar messages such as Three Seas Initiative is a geopolitical concept designed to promote American interests, Aim of the Eastern Partnership is to separate Russia’s neighbours from it, and Three Seas Initiative is a tool of American hegemony in post-Soviet areas surrounding Russia. This message appeared in the same article as the claim that the only inspiration for the Polish foreign policy are the phone calls from the US Embassy.

Trump faced several coup attempts, including the impeachment and the Russian collusion fraud

President Donald Trump faced political persecution, and had to defend himself even against the several coup attempts, such as the impeachment and the fraud of the Russian collusion.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory, with no evidence provided to support the claim. This is a recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about an alleged plot against president Donald Trump by undemocratic powers, articulated through a “fake Russiagate” and an impeachment process. The 2019 impeachment was not a coup attempt but an entirely legal procedure contemplated by the US Senate legislation, whose aim was to determine whether President Trump committed high crimes and misdemeanours by 1) pressing a foreign government (Ukraine's) to harm a domestic political rival, former vice president and current Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, and 2) trying to impede a Congressional investigation by blocking testimony and refusing to provide documents in response to House subpoenas. Regarding to collusion with Russia, there were plenty of reasons for US authorities to open an investigation, as the Volume 5 of the Intelligence Committee of the US Senate on Russian Interference in the 2016 election (released in August 2020) shows, which highlights many elements that were not cleared by the previous Mueller Report. Though Mueller’s inquiry only had stated that the investigation “did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities”, it unequivocally established that Russia attempted to interfere in the election on Trump’s favour. Pro-Kremlin disinformation, however, has repeatedly portrayed Mueller’s work as proof that there was no such interference and that Russia is always falsely accused. See other examples of these disinformation narratives, such as claims that the Deep State is behind the racial justice protests in the US; that Trump’s impeachment was a failed plot by a group of Democrats obsessed with Soros, who had links to the whistleblower who triggered the inquiry; that the NYT story on Trump’s tax returns proves that the Russiagate is a hoax; that the CIA is organising a colour revolution in the US to oust Trump after the 2020 election; or that US Democrats are trying to destroy Trump and incite a civil war. This disinformation message appeared in the same article as the claim that “Biden refused to condemn street violence because he fears losing electoral weight.”