Disinfo: Ukraine wants to preserve itself as an anti-Russian project

Summary

Ukraine needs war, it needs to preserve its anti-Russian project. It won’t survive without it.

Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russophobia in Ukraine and Ukraine's statehood. Ukraine is a sovereign nation-state, not an anti-Russian project. In 1991, Ukraine gained its independence from the Soviet Union. The Declaration of State Sovereignty of Ukraine was adopted on 16 July 1990. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Ukraine and Russia established diplomatic relations and signed a number of important treaties. On 31 May 1997, the countries signed a comprehensive Friendship Treaty. As a result, Russia recognised Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity. It also recognised that Crimea belongs to Ukraine. See a similar case: Ukraine is an anti-Russian and anti-European project of the US.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 170
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 25/10/2019
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: Anti-Russian, Donbas, War in Ukraine
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Ukrainians do not want to join NATO

Ukrainians do not want to join NATO, do not want this [to happen].

Disproof

This pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative suggests that Ukrainian pro-European and pro-NATO aspirations are weakening. This is a manipulative claim since all available recent polls show the highest ever support for NATO membership in Ukraine. A June 2019 joint poll by the Sociological Group Rating and International Republican Institute shows that the number of NATO supporters in Ukraine reached a historical maximum. Today, 53% of Ukraine support accession to NATO; 29% are against. Somewhat smaller, but still high support for NATO shows a poll conducted by the Ilko Kucheriv “Democratic Initiatives” Foundation. The August 2019 poll revealed that 41% of Ukrainians would like to see Ukraine as a NATO member. In comparison, only 13-16% of Ukrainians, on average, supported accession to NATO before 2014. The report concludes that the attitude towards NATO has changed dramatically after 2014: the number of NATO supporters has tripled. Polls conducted earlier this year by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology also confirm that support for NATO remains high. In February 2019, 40% of Ukrainian citizens supported Ukraine accession to NATO. Moreover, if on a referendum there were two possible answers - yes and no - 56% would vote "yes". See more disinformation cases on Ukraine and NATO.

NATO is looking for a reason to start military action against Belarus and Russia

The talks about the so called Russian threat are an excuse. Everyone is allegedly worried about Belarus’ domestic policy and its sovereignty as if they really care about Belarus’ problems. In fact, the stationing of U.S. troops in Lithuania means that the U.S. and NATO are looking for a reason to begin military action, and any excuse can be used at the right moment.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy theory which is consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about Western aggressiveness towards Belarus and Russia. Claims that NATO is preparing an attack on Russia have no basis and have been repeatedly debunked.

See earlier disinformation cases alleging that the West is targeting the Union State between Belarus and Russia, that the Belarusian opposition, that NATO is planning to invade Belarus, civic activists and independent journalists make kill lists for Western security bodies, and that NATO/US military exercises in Europe are directed against Russia and Belarus.

JIT MH17 investigation is doubtful, based only on social media and Internet

In June 2019, the JIT issued a new report, detailing the names of four people suspected of shooting down the Boeing MH17. They are Russians Igor Girkin, Sergei Doubinsky, Oleg Poulatov and Ukrainian Leonid Khartchenko. However, the group refers to questionable sources, including photos and information found in social networks and on the Internet. The JIT, which does not include Russian experts, refuses to take into consideration documents proving that the missile that shot down the Malaysian Boeing belonged to Ukraine. It also ignores the results of the experiments conducted by the Buk designer, the Almaz-Antei group, which show that the Boeing was shot down from an area that was then controlled by the Ukrainian army.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative on MH 17 downing which includes mutually exclusive statements on Russian radar which has not detected any missiles in the area or on the made-in-Ukraine missile. The narrative that Russia was unjustly put apart of the investigation was repeated hundreds of times. The crash did not take place over Russian territory and claimed no Russian lives, which precludes any basis for Moscow to be represented in the JIT. Dutch Chief Prosecutor Fred Westerbeke told a Russian newspaper that "if MH17 were shot down over Russia, I would have suggested that Russia be made a member of the JIT group." Claims by Buk manufacturer Almaz-Antey were debunked back in 2015 by Bellingcat. Joint Investigation Team collected forensic evidence from debris, soil samples, stated taped phone conversations and other evidence. Full description on how the investigation was conducted is available here in JIT's report. JIT has concluded that flight MH17 was shot down on 17 July 2014 by a missile of the 9M38 series, launched by a BUK-TELAR, from farmland in the vicinity of Pervomaiskiy. At that time, the area was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. The BUK-TELAR was brought in from the territory of the Russian Federation and subsequently, after having shot down flight MH17, was taken back to the Russian Federation. For our overview and analysis of disinformation narratives around the downing of MH17, click here. More disinformation cases on MH17 see here.