Disinfo: US refused to help Italy against COVID-19

Summary

The United States refused to help Italy in fighting the coronavirus epidemic.

Disproof

This is part of the ongoing pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign around the coronavirus pandemic, one aim of which is to undermine European and transatlantic solidarity in face of the crisis, in line with the Kremlin's longstanding objectives to weaken the transatlantic democratic alliance. On 11 April, US President Donald Trump ordered top U.S. administration officials to help Italy in fighting the novel coronavirus by providing medical supplies, humanitarian relief and other assistance. In a memo to several Cabinet ministers, Trump ordered a variety of measures to help Italy, including making U.S. military personnel in the country available for telemedicine services, helping set up field hospitals, and transporting supplies. He also ordered his commerce secretary to encourage U.S. suppliers to sell products requested by Italian authorities and healthcare providers. The US Department of State added that a "robust assistance package" will be given to Italy.

"This will include support for international organizations and NGOs, including faith-based organizations, many of which are already providing essential relief to Italian communities. These efforts will help support the recovery of the Italian economy. The United States will also provide technical support to the response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Italy, building on existing, productive partnerships between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Italy’s health sector. We will identify excess military supplies and encourage donations from the U.S. private sector. Italy hosts about 30,000 U.S. military personnel and families. U.S. military personnel will assist with a variety of functions, including providing telemedicine services, facilitating the transport and assembly of field hospitals and equipment, treating non-COVID-19 patients, and supporting transport of supplies, fuel, and food".

Read similar cases claiming that Italy is alone defending itself from coronavirus, without any help from hypocritical EU and that Italy is alone face to face with an invisible and terrible enemy.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 196
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 08/05/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Arabic, English
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Italy, US
  • Keywords: coronavirus
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Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative distorting the events of the Second World War. Since 2016, in the framework of the law on decommunisation, on 9 May, Ukraine began to celebrate "Victory Day over Nazism in World War II of 1939-1945." The holiday replaced the "Victory Day over fascism in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945." The relevant law No. 2539 “On the Perpetuation of the Victory over Nazism in World War II of 1939 - 1945” was adopted on 9 April 2015, by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. The law defines the duty of the state and citizens of Ukraine to respect the memory of the victory over Nazism in WWII; war veterans, members of the Ukrainian liberation movement and the victims of Nazism. At the same time, while respecting the memory of those who fell during WWII, the use of Soviet symbols was cancelled. Instead, now the official symbol of the celebration of the Day of Victory over Nazism in WWII is the red poppy flower - the generally accepted symbol in the world for the celebration of significant days of WWII. Also, together with many EU countries, on 8 May, Ukraine annually celebrates Remembrance and Reconciliation Day. The holiday is celebrated on the day of the surrender of Nazi Germany on 8 May 1945.

Disinfo: The purpose of the US Arctic Doctrine is to destabilise the region

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Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the US, claiming that American and NATO policies are a threat to world peace and security. US policy towards the Arctic emphasises science and international collaboration, tending to neglect strategic and geopolitical considerations. In June 2019, the US Department of Defense released its updated Arctic Defence Strategy. This document focuses on threats posed by Russia – which is building up and upgrading military infrastructure in its Arctic region – and by China. Previously abandoned Cold War-era military installations have been reopened and incursions by Russian aircraft and submarines into or close to other countries’ Arctic spaces have become more frequent. The US and NATO are reviewing their policies in the Arctic region because of the increasing military activities of Russia and China in the Arctic. Read similar cases claiming that Washington is using NATO for military confrontation in the Arctic, or Finland cooperates with NATO in order to get territory in the Arctic, that the new US policy in the Arctic is belligerent, and that NATO wants to prevent Russia from utilising the Northeast passage.

Disinfo: Ukrainian army purposefully fires at children in Donbas

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Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the war in Ukraine. Over the last two weeks, the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission has recorded just one case of injuries sustained by children. According to the May 5 report, three children were injured due to shelling in Oleksandrivka (non-government-controlled). Medical staff at a Donetsk hospital refused to provide the SMM with further information. Also, according to the OSCE mission's daily reports, the number of ceasefire violations in the previous 30 days as of 7 May was lower than the 2019 daily average. However, the number of daily ceasefire violations on 5 May was higher than average. According to human rights organisations, children's rights are often violated by the occupying administrations in Donbas. For instance, the self-proclaimed "Donetsk People's Republic" created a militarised "army" for young people which is called "Yunarmia". Since 2014, children have participated in non-government military formations on both sides. See recent disinformation alleging that Kyiv will soon try to take back the Donbas and that Kyiv's Western protectors are inflaming war in the Donbas.