Disinfo: The Netherlands has not taken into account evidence confirming Russia’s innocence in the downing of MH17

Summary

The Russian experts have provided the Netherlands with key evidence of Russia’s innocence and Ukraine’s involvement in the tragedy, but the investigation has not taken them into account. Only now, 5 years after the tragedy and in a hopeless situation, the Dutch parliament began to doubt the official version.

Disproof

This is one narrative in pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign about the MH17 crash. On the 24th of 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 the basis of the investigation conducted by the JIT, the Dutch Public Persecution service will prosecute Igor Vsevolodovich Girkin, Sergey Nikolayevich Dubinskiy, Oleg Yuldashevich Pulatov, and Leonid Volodymyrovych Kharchenko for causing the crash of the MH17 and murdering the 298 persons on board. The public hearing is scheduled for 9 March 2020 in the Netherlands. The "evidence" claimed by Russia, namely radar data and the "field experiment" conducted by the Russian military company Almaz-Antey, is only a small sample of misleading claims advanced by Moscow since 2015, some of which have contradicted one another. Also, Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta found the claim that the Buk was of "Ukrainian origin" to be fabricated. See further debunking by Bellingcat and similar cases about the unwillingness of the JIT to consider evidence provided by Russia.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 172
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 29/10/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: The Netherlands, Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: MH17
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Volunteers from Eastern Europe had a workshop on the organisation of "colour revolutions"

The West has been – for decades – attempting to influence the minds of young people from the former Soviet Republics in order to use them to achieve foreign political goals. This time, the annual training of young “civic activists” from 15 countries took place in the capital of Moldova. In an atmosphere of strict secrecy and with American money, volunteers were told about strategies to combat power, about the organisation and media support of mass protests. As it turned out, these professionals from Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Georgia, Armenia, and other Eastern European states shared their experiences of forcibly changing the power in their countries and opposing “Russian influence”. CampCamp2019 conference was organized by the Prague Civil Society Center (PCSC), which receives funding from the US budget, allocated under the law “On countering the enemies of America through sanctions.”

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative presenting all activities of NGOs, media or civil society activists as measures to overthrow the power in post-Soviet states. Also, a conspiracy, according to which the US prepare in secrecy people of the former Soviet Republics to work for foreign forces. The event CampCamp2019 was organized in Chisinau from 24 to 27 October by the Prague Civil Society Center. It focused on campaigning and communications for civil society activists, as mentioned on the official page of the event. The participants were invited to improve their communication skills, to find ideas for public campaigns, to learn about new formats, trends and tools for civil society communications, to share campaigning experience with colleagues from other cities and countries. There is no mention about how to organize mass protests and about opposing “Russian influence”. There was also no "atmosphere of strict secrecy": the event has a public web page in two languages – Russian and English. The PCSC is funded by many donors, such as the Oak Foundation, the European Commission, and the Governments of Sweden, the Czech Republic, the United States of America and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Read a similar case here.

Today it is Halloween, tomorrow it's a rubber woman

Halloween is a completely artificial holiday, which is accepted because it is fashionable in the West. That is the idiocy. Today it is Halloween, and tomorrow it is a rubber woman. This is unnatural, not normal.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about West's moral decay. Read similar cases claiming that Western males are feminised semi-men and the West is lobbying for perversion. The tradition of Halloween originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III designated November 1 as a time to honour all saints. When large numbers of immigrants, including the Irish, went to the United States beginning in the mid 19th century, they took their Halloween customs with them, and in the 20th century, Halloween became one of the principal U.S. holidays, particularly among children.

US has no interest to support Georgia's prosperity

The US has no interest to support Georgia’s prosperity. They principally do not care if Georgia fulfills its conditions of [NATO] integration process… And it is not only about Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Former Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen offered Tbilisi to give up on the claim over these territories as if the Article 5 should not cover them.

Disproof

Recurring Pro-Kremlin narrative on the US and NATO, which aims at sowing mistrust and nihilism in Georgian society towards the West. In 2009 the US and Georgia signed a US-Georgia Charter on Strategic Partnership, which advances bilateral cooperation on priority areas, such as defense and security; economic, trade, and energy issues; people-to-people and cultural exchanges. Read more about US-Georgia relations here. US firmly supports Georgia's sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders. More about the NATO/US military assistance to Georgia can be found here. As for the narrative about Rasmussen, this is a manipulative interpretation of the former NATO Secretary General's statements. Speaking at the 5th Tbilisi International Conference co-organized by McCain Institute and Economic Policy Research Centre, former NATO Secretary-General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen said [13:07 - 15:00] that in case of Georgia’s accession to the alliance, it should be discussed internally whether Article 5 covers only the territory that is actually controlled by the Georgian government and applies to the occupied territories only after Georgia restores its jurisdiction there. As an illustration, Rasmussen brought an example of Germany, saying that West Germany joined NATO in 1955, while East Germany became a member of the alliance only in 1990, following German reunification. See similar cases here, here, and here.