Disinfo: The US plans to turn Belarus into its colony, a coup and foreign military invasion may happen

Summary

The fate of all authoritarian rulers who tried to agree with Washington and collective West was tragic. In a new Belarus, which the West is planning to build on the ruins of the Union State of Belarus and Russia, the West does not need Alexander Lukashenko in any status. The US will not behave as the Kremlin, which tolerates Lukashenko’s demarches and does not interfere in Belarus’ domestic affairs. An appointment of US ambassador to Belarus means that the embassy will soon start reviewing the candidates to Belarus’ presidential position. Given the specifics of Belarus, Lukashenko may be overthrown not through the Maidan, but in a coup. In case someone suddenly backs up and attempts to save Belarus from turning into yet another US colony, the West may bring hundreds of Belarusian nationals who fought in Donbas on Kyiv’s side. Following the power change in Belarus, so-called peacekeeping forces from Poland or the Baltic states may enter and replace the Russian military in Belarus.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy theory which is consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about Western attempts to organise a colour revolution in Belarus and to disrupt Belarusian-Russian relations. The US and other Western countries do not have plans to organize a forceful power change in Belarus or to send any peacekeeping forces from Poland or the Baltic states. Belarusian authorities expelled US ambassador in 2008 in response to US sanctions introduced for the rigged presidential elections in Belarus and poor human rights record. The sides announced their plans to restore ambassadors during the US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale' s visit to Minsk in September 2019. This intention was confirmed during US State Secretary Mike Pompeo visit to Minsk on 1 February 2020. See earlier disinformation cases alleging that the West dreams of tearing Belarus apart from Russia and to organise a Ukraine-like scenario, that Belarusian opposition leader Andrei Sannikau prepares a coup with US military assistance, and that pro-Western Belarusian opposition prepares a revolution with the assistance of armed Ukrainian nationalists.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 184
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 03/02/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Poland, US, Belarus, Baltic states, Russia
  • Keywords: Union State of Belarus and Russia, Imperialism/colonialism, Alexander Lukashenko, Colour revolutions, Conspiracy theory, Coup
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The US Defender 2020 military manoeuvre is explicitly directed against Russia

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Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the West/ NATO threatening or encircling Russia and the US-led military exercise "Defender-Europe 2020", which is not aimed or targeted at Russia. US Major General Andrew Rohling Deputy Commanding General for the US Army in Europe, informs that the US-led exercise "Defender 2020" is an American exercise with 18 NATO partner countries. Rohling emphasises that the aim of the exercise is not to target any country, but rather to test strategic readiness and how to react to a crisis. Exercise Defender-Europe 2020 is the deployment of a division-size combat-credible force from the United States to Europe, the drawing of equipment and the movement of personnel and equipment across the Atlantic to various training areas in Europe, like Germany and Poland. With US Defender Europe 2020, the 18 participating NATO-countries are therefore practising procedures to ensure and demonstrate the ability to relocate and also to confirm the alliance's commitment to supporting and, in particular, to show the United States' commitment to Europe's security. There are 37,000 participants - of which up to 20,000 from the USA are to be relocated to Europe - and takes place from January to May 2020. U.S. service members will then spread out across the region to establish intermediate staging bases with multinational forces and participate in various annual exercises. For more information about the exercise: US Army Europe Website and Factsheet about Defender 2020 and updates from the Bundeswehr (German Army).

US officials loot their colonies including Ukraine

Appointment of Joe Biden’s son to the board of Ukrainian gas company Burisma is a traditional example of US looting its colonies. At times, families of high-ranking US officials benefited not only from colonies but from Washington’s geopolitical opponents. Given the revenues that the American politicians received from the ruins of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Ukrainian economies, all those who believe in the US’s intention to fight corruption in foreign countries, are naive.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory consistent with a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine's sovereignty and US presence in Europe. The relations between the US and Ukraine are bilateral relations between two independent countries. The US recognised Ukraine as an independent state on 25 December 1991. US policy is focused on strengthening a stable, democratic, prosperous, and free Ukraine, more closely integrated into Europe and Euro-Atlantic structures. See earlier disinformation cases alleging that the US has turned Ukraine into a puppet, that colour revolutions are used by the West to intervene in the affairs of sovereign states and that the US State Department and US Embassy in Ukraine represent a system of “Gauleiter's".

Foreign diplomats in Navalny's trial interfere in Russia's domestic affairs

The presence of foreign diplomats in the court trying Alexey Navalny is not only a clear interference in Russia’s domestic affairs. It is also exerting psychological pressure to the judges.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Alexei Navalny.

Anti-corruption campaigner Alexei Navalny has long been the most prominent face of Russian opposition to President Vladimir Putin. His candidacy in the 2018 presidential election was banned by authorities over his conviction by a Russian court of embezzlement, which bars him from running for office. He has been arrested and imprisoned several times during his political career. He is also a prominent figure outside Russia and this justifies the interest of foreign countries and officials.