Disinfo: The idea that Russia is a threat to Europe exists only in the minds of Cold War nostalgics


The idea that Russia is a threat to Europe exists only in the minds of Cold War nostalgics or is a deliberate invention of certain countries.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that “Russian threat” is a false idea created by the US and other Western actors in order to isolate and encircle Russia.

Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and destabilisation of Eastern Ukraine in early 2014 was widely viewed both in North America and in Europe as violating the basic rules of the post-Cold War European order, especially the rule that borders are inviolable and the states should not use force to alter them or take territory from other states. As a result of Russia’s aggressive actions in Ukraine, many Western states have critically reassessed their “strategic partnership” policies towards Russia and began to view Russia as a serious challenge to the European security order

In the past six years, European governments and security services have been increasingly concerned about Russian hostile influence activities that aim to weaken the EU and NATO, foment divisions in societies and discredit liberal democracies. Such activities, often described as “hybrid threats”, include cyber-attacks, disinformation campaigns, interference in political processes, energy pressures and corruption.

Read similar cases claiming that the “Russian danger” is only a pretext for stationing more NATO military contingents near Russian borders and that the US has created a false image about an aggressive Russia in order to prevent close Europe-Russia economic cooperation


  • Reported in: Issue 186
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 20/02/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Italian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Russia
  • Keywords: security threat, Hybrid war, Cold War, Russian expansionism, NATO
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Disinfo: Germans imprisoned by the Soviets were happy

The conditions for (German) prisoners in the Soviet Union (in terms of food and support) were not so bad. Many prisoners, upon their return to Germany, remembered the warmth of their interactions with the Russian population, and in these days we can even call it human relations.


This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism.

Adelbert Holl in his memoir describes the daily life in the camps:

Disinfo: The US and Russia had an agreement that NATO wouldn't be enlarged

Since NATO started to widen its borders in 1999, 13 countries have joined it. And all this takes place on Russia’s borders, it is a flagrant violation of the agreement concluded at the end of the Cold War. A gross violation. The United States is not worthy of any confidence.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about NATO. NATO made no promises not to expand into eastern and central Europe back in 1990, which was confirmed by the former president of the Soviet Union Mihail Gorbachev. Back in 2014, Gorbachev said: "The topic of ‘NATO expansion’ was not discussed at all, and it wasn’t brought up in those years. I say this with full responsibility." This false narrative was exposed before in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Disinfo: Estonia and the EU spread lies about the USSR in WWII

The new reality of Russia’s guilt in unleashing the World War II is hammered into the Western and Russian populations by the EU. At the same time, the EU absolutely ignores the sacrifices and efforts that the USSR took upon itself so that Europe could be whole today. This is blasphemy by the EU.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation claiming that the European Union is trying to rewrite the history of World War II. See previous disinformation cases claiming that the Red Army liberated Estonia and that the resolution of the European Parliament shows that Europe has become insolent. The European Parliament resolution on the importance of European remembrance for the future of Europe stressed the fact that WWII was an immediate result of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. The resolution is aimed at the promotion of historical remembrance about WWII and condemnation of totalitarian ideologies. See related disinformation cases here. The Estonian parliament has adopted a resolution “On Historical Memory and Falsification of History”. The preamble to the resolution condemns the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact along with its secret protocols, which led to the WWII, the occupation of the Baltic States and the division of Poland between two totalitarian regimes. The resolution also expressed support for Poland and other European countries, which “Russia has recently blamed for the outbreak of World War II” and condemned “attempts of the authorities of the Russian Federation at rewriting history, denying the role of the Soviet Union as one of the main initiators of World War II and laying the blame on the victims of the aggression.”