Disinfo: There are clear signs that Ukraine will attack the Donbas


There are clear signs that a Ukrainian offensive is in preparation against the Donbas. For instance, a group supporting the Democratic Party in the US includes a relatively large contingent of Ukrainian immigrants, as well as new Secretary of State Anthony Blinken. These people are essentially Banderites and their descendants who fled to the US after WWII. They are lobbying to help Kyiv’s current leadership and Blinken fulfils their demands.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about Kyiv planning to launch an attack on the Donbas and the alleged influence of "Banderites".

In Donbas, a truce was established in July 2020. The Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated multiple times that the achievement of a full, comprehensive, and long-lasting ceasefire is one of the key priorities of the Ukrainian government. The 27 January daily report of the OSCE's monitoring mission in Ukraine notes that the number of daily ceasefire violations (on 27 January, previous 7-day average, and previous 30-day average) is considerably lower than over 2020. The same report identified one vehicle in violation of withdrawal lines, a Gvozdika self-propelled howitzer in government-controlled areas. Nothing suggests that Ukraine was preparing for an offensive.

There is nothing that suggests any sort of Banderites influence over the Democratic Party in the US. Official US policy is focused on supporting the "the development of a secure, democratic, prosperous, and free Ukraine, fully integrated into the Euro-Atlantic community." Moreover, "The United States does not, and will not ever, recognize Russia’s attempted annexation of Crimea, and continues to work with our partners to seek a diplomatic solution to the Russia-instigated conflict in eastern Ukraine." These policies remained consistent across multiple US administrations.


  • Reported in: Issue 229
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 26/01/2021
  • Language/target audience: Hungarian, Russian
  • Country: Ukraine, US
  • Keywords: Democratic Party (US), Stepan Bandera, War in Ukraine


Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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Beijing uses the protests in Russia to gain leverage on the Kremlin

Fake news also became the integral part of this anti-government campaign. They were mostly dedicated to alleged killings and incredible numbers of arrests by the authorities. These messages were actively endorsed by mainstream social media, including the Chinese-operated TikTok. While Washington, which prefers to see the Russian statehood destroyed, Beijing is also not averse to use the situation for getting additional leverage on the Kremlin to strengthen its own position in joint projects.


The claim that Beijing have influence over the nation-wide January protests in Russia is not supported by any evidence.

This message is consistent with pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives that protests, disorders and civil uprisings are never manifestations of popular discontent but are "colour revolutions" directed and funded by foreign intelligence services or other actors in order to destabilise targeted foreign states and bring about regime change.

Next wave of liberal protests might “accidentally coincide” with terror attacks

It seems that the ramping up of the destabilization attempts is scheduled for September 2021, – the period of the Russian general election that will include the next legislative election and the election of 11 governors. The liberal opposition has already proven that it is ready to even sacrifice children in order to achieve the ambitions of its sponsors. If the Russian government does not employ preventive measures, these people will easily find large support from Russia’s geopolitical opponents. Next time staged anti-government protests can ‘accidentally coincide’ with industrial disasters, cyberattacks, and even terrorist attacks.


An unfounded conspiracy theory, consistent with a recurrent narrative about expressions of popular discontent as results of foreign involvement.

The 2021 Russian protests began on 23 January 2021 in support of the arrested opposition leader Alexei Navalny and as a reaction to the investigation Putin's Palace. The rallies — from Russia’s Far East to central Moscow — came less than a week after Navalny returned from Germany, where he recovered from a nerve agent poisoning in August during a trip to Siberia. Navalny was arrested shortly after stepping off the plane.

The West needs Navalny to create new “Maidans”

Western countries need this “activist” [Alexei Navalny] to destabilise the situation in Russia, for social upheaval, strikes, and new Maidans.

We have the example of Ukraine where this can lead to, with Ukraine in practice having lost its independence.


Recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, aiming to deflect the authorities' responsibility in his poisoning attempt and to discredit him by portraying him as a puppet of the West, and another example of disinformation narratives about the 2013-2014 Maidan protests and Ukrainian statehood.

Contrary to the claim, which is not backed by any evidence, Alexei Navalny is an independent Russian politician, not a pawn of any foreign government.