Disinfo: Washington backed the demolition of the statue to Soviet commander in Prague

Summary

The report of the American company Squire Patton Boggs, which substantiated the demolition of the monument to Marshal Konev in Prague, was of great importance for anti-Russian politicians in the Czech Republic. They write thousands of such reports every year. Of course, for the Czech political community, for their establishment, the report of a big American law firm is important. If the business took place in America, no one would pay such big attention to it – for them, it would be just a report of another lobbying company, albeit a large one. For the Czech Republic, a small country, which is largely dependent on the mood in Brussels and Washington, this is of great importance for them and has become one of the points of the PR campaign in the PR war around the monument to Marshal Konev. The Russian embassy will find out the role of the USA in the demolition of the monument to Konev. The Washington office of the company did not respond to requests. Apparently, they have something to hide.

Disproof

This is a recurring disinformation narrative about the statue of Marshall Konev in Prague. It is also consistent with common pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about Russophobia and the supposedly hostile anti-Russian intentions of the West, based on which Russia can cast itself as the victim. The democratic decision to move the Konev statue to a museum has raised the ire of the Kremlin and even led Moscow to open a symbolic criminal case to investigate the alleged "defiling of symbols of Russia's military glory." No supportive documents are given to prove the existence of an American law firm report about the statue of Marshall Konev in Prague. Even if such a report exists, it would not be binding for the democratically-elected local municipal council, which voted to the remove the statue in 2019. The leadership of Prague's Municipal District 6, which retains legal ownership of the statue, has voted to move the monument to a museum - not demolish it - 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. In the dispute over the statue, Russia has argued that under the Czech-Russian mutual agreement of 1993, the Czech Republic is obliged to leave the statue in place on Prague's Interbrigade Square. However, this is an intentionally false and misleading interpretation of the terms of the agreement (full text available here). The monument is municipal property, belonging to city district Prague 6, and the 1993 agreement, therefore, does not apply to this case. The statue of Konev, erected in 1980, is not a military grave or memorial and therefore it was not protected by international treaties. The municipal council of Prague 6 voted for the removal of the statue. Basing on 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 terror to the Czech Republic, 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 that dignified - placement of this art piece (Konev) in a memorial institution." For similar cases, see here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 196
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 15/04/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Czech Republic, US, Russia
  • Keywords: World War 2, Monuments, Historical revisionism, Red Army, Puppets, US presence in Europe
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Disinfo: 150 tons of medical cargo disappeared from the Ukrainian superplane

If it is true that Ukrainian plane “Antonov” brought only 90 tons of cargo, it means that with a lifting capacity of 250 tons the plane used less than 1/3 (sic) of its transport capabilities. Kombinat Górniczo-Hutniczy Miedzi is the Polish state corporation responsible for the transaction. It paid 12 million zlotys. This is a gigantic mismanagement, for which someone should answer criminally. Thus, Internet users conclude that the fate of at least 150 tons of medical equipment is unknown.

Disproof

The conclusion in this article that "Poles wonder where the 150 tons of cargo go" is based on one Facebook post. Ukraine's An-225 Mriya plane (the world's largest transport aircraft) has delivered a record medical cargo from China to Poland - 100 tonnes, the press service of the Antonov Company has reported on Facebook. It notes that in China, about 100 tonnes of medicines, laboratory tests, medical masks and other remedies were loaded into the aircraft. As mentioned in Ukrainian media, the aircraft will deliver the rest of the cargo to Poland on the second flight. According to the Polish Ministry of State Assets, the Ukrainian giant will bring the country nearly 400 tons of medical cargo purchased from China. However, due to the fact that the aircraft is only capable of carrying up to 250 tons of cargo at a time, it will likely have to make at least two round trips to fulfill the Polish contract. See more cases trying to cast doubt on exchange and procurement of medical supplies in light of the coronavirus pandemic here.

Disinfo: The West needs to accept the status of Crimea as Russian and remove the sanctions

Nobody expects the Great and the Good of the West to openly admit they were wrong about Crimea, and that the region and its citizens are in fact immeasurably better-off than they would be had they been subjected to rule by Kiev. But there is usually a way out of such a dilemma, and one that can be gently implemented without embarrassment. All that the West needs to do is quietly accept the status of Crimea and remove anti-Russia sanctions without fanfare.

Disproof

This is recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation on the illegal annexation of Crimea. The illegal annexation of Crimea was a violation of the UN Charter, of the OSCE Charter and of Russia's obligations as a signatory of the Budapest agreement. No international body recognises the so-called referendum, announced on the 27th of February 2014, and held on 16th of March 2014. A year after the illegal annexation, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted that the plan to annex Crimea was ordered weeks before the so-called referendum. On 27 March 2014, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution in which it stated that the referendum in Crimea was not valid and could not serve as a basis for any change in the status of the peninsula. On 17 December 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea. The EU's policy of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol includes a set of restrictive measures against entities and individuals responsible for actions against Ukraine's territorial integrity. In March 2019, on the fifth anniversary of Crimea's illegal annexation, the EU reiterated its position of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol. The EU continues to stand in full solidarity with Ukraine, supporting its sovereignty and territorial integrity. Read similar cases claiming that Crimean people have expressed their desire to rejoin Russia in a democratic process and that Crimea never belonged to Ukraine.

Disinfo: Ultimate anti-coronavirus recipe: determination+honey+orange juice

A person with diabetes managed to defeat the deadly coronavirus with determination, optimism, the usage of honey, orange juice and some herbs.

The person looked for a solution to strengthen the immune system on the Internet and found many things like thyme, rosemary, honey, eucalyptus leaves, orange juice and herbal tea.

Disproof

There is no medical evidence to support the claim that thyme, rosemary, honey, eucalyptus leaves, orange juice and herbal tea can prevent against catching the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.

While common colds can be a result of a coronavirus, they're usually caused by a rhinovirus. Rhinoviruses are a family of viruses that are associated with upper respiratory tract infections. Thus, the mentioned "medicines" can be helpful in warding off symptoms of illnesses usually caused by rhinoviruses. But, that doesn't necessarily mean that they are effective against COVID-19.