Disinfo: The US is behind the removal of Konev’s monument in Prague

Summary

The decision to remove the monument to Soviet Marshal Ivan Konev in Prague was not made by the Czech leadership, it was a vile decision of people going against the national interests of the Czech Republic.

The conclusion to justify the liquidation of the monument was prepared by an American company.

Disproof

This is part of the recurring disinformation campaign about the statue of Marshall Konev in Prague. It also capitalises on the common pro-Kremlin narrative about the US standing behind all hostile anti-Russian intentions.

The democratically elected municipal council of Prague 6 voted for the removal of the statue. Using the protocol of the Politbureau's assembly, Czech historians established that on 8-14 May 1968 Konev chaired the Soviet military delegation sent to Prague to prepare the military invasion of Czechoslovakia. Konev was also chief of the Soviet troops in East Germany during the Berlin wall crisis in 1961. In other words, the Red Army brought not only liberation but also the terror to Czechia, as the mayor of Prague 6, Ondřej Kolář, reminded.

Kolář said that he respects the role of Konev-led forces in liberating Prague and the sacrifice of Soviet armies liberating Europe from Nazism. "We will strive for an art competition for a memorial to the liberators of Prague at the end of World War Two instead of the Marshal Konev statue," he said before the vote. "At the same time, we will secure a dignified - and let me stress 'dignified' - placement of this art piece (Konev) in a memorial institution. I think this is a consensual solution we have called for a number of years."

The monument to Marshall Konev was erected in 1980 during the "normalisation" period in communist Czechoslovakia. The leadership of Prague's Municipal District 6, which retains legal ownership of the statue, has voted to move the monument to a museum and replace it with a memorial commemorating Soviet sacrifices in the fight against Hitler in general and the liberation of Prague in particular. More information available here.

See earlier disinformation cases concerning the Konev's statue which alleged that the purpose of removing the monuments is to provoke aggression towards Russia, that the removal is immoral and illegal, and that Prague committed a crime by removing the Konev monument.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 195
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 16/04/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Czech Republic, US
  • Keywords: USSR, Monuments, WWII, US presence in Europe
see more

Former members of Bush Administration created an anti-communist group to advise president Trump against China

Several advisors for President Trump are members of a group born out of the George W. Bush administration, calling themselves Red Dawn. The New York Times just released some mails from these people. This group, nostalgic for the Cold War, is viscerally anti-communist. The USSR ceased to exist, but China is still being ruled by the Communist Party. They are convinced that “evil” Chinese are attacking them with Covid-19. President Trump marginalised them, but their ideas entered the public debate. In the same way that the 9/11 events allowed the adoption of the Patriot Act, which had been prepared in advance, now Covid-19 allows former members of the Bush Administration to reactivate their own crusade.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy theory deliberately misrepresenting the so-called ‘Red Dawn group’, which is by no means a formal group. According to the documents, originally published by the site Kaiser Health News and later collected and reviewed by the New York Times, the Red Dawn was simply a chain of email exchanges between a US elite group of infectious disease doctors and medical experts in the federal government and academic institutions, both inside and outside of the government. This group was concerned by the implications of the novel coronavirus outbreak and the response of the Trump Administration and other governments and global institutions, which they considered ill-conceived and insufficient.

“Red Dawn” was a notoriously anti-communist film released in 1984, but apart from that, there is no mention of any anti-communist ideology or any plan against China in the emails, or to any attack from the “evil Chinese”. The fact that some of these long-career experts served in the George W. Bush Administration is largely irrelevant, and there is no evidence that this group has an agenda to be implemented concerning taking advantage of the Covid-19 crisis.

Plans to close biolabs in Ukraine made US start supporting Euromaidan

The coronavirus pandemic and the rumours of its artificial origins have activated the discussion on US biolabs, located around Russian borders. Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and, of course, Ukraine are covered by a network of laboratories, funded by Pentagon money. Attempts to rid oneself of these disputable institutions might even lead to an overturn of the powers in a country. […] The laboratories was one of the factors that drove the Americans to actively work for a regime change in Ukraine.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative alleging that the 2013-14 Ukrainian revolution was caused by external factors mixed with a narrative about American biological laboratories in Ukraine.

The U.S. did not initiate the 2013-14 Ukrainian revolution. The demonstrations which began in Kyiv in November 2013 – called "Maidan", or "Euromaidan" – were a result of the Ukrainian people's frustration with former President Yanukovych's last-minute U-turn when, after seven years of negotiation, he refused to sign the EU–Ukraine Association Agreement and halted progress towards Ukraine's closer relationship with the EU as a result of Russian pressure.

Ukrainian government and Maidan leaders are guilty of the May 2, 2014 Odesa tragedy

Everyone knows that it was Parubiy [one of the leaders of the Euromaidan and the former speaker of the parliament] who organised the Odesa Khatyn [the fire in the House of the Trade Unions], resulting in 48 deaths and more than 250 people injured. Most of the victims of the tragedy were burned alive in the House of Trade Unions. The investigation established that riots in Odesa were organised and planned.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about May 2, 2014 clashes in Odesa and the resulting fire in the House of the Trade Unions.

There is no evidence of Andriy Parubiy's involvement in the 2014 Odesa tragedy. At the time, Andriy Parubiy was the Secretary of the National Security and Defence Council.