Disinfo: The West finances Belarusian opposition and NGOs to disrupt Belarus-Russia relations

Summary

The Belarusian opposition is secretly managed by Western institutions, politicians and West-linked NGOs (funded by USAID). Their strategic aim is to disrupt Belarus-Russia relations. US, Germany, Poland and the Baltic countries are most active in this regard. Over the last years, the West has been using Ukraine to pressure Belarus more often than before. Ukraine’s role within the broader Western strategy against Belarus is to organise information provocations, to give military training to Belarusian radicals, to support public protests with arms, and to organize breakthroughs to Belarus by groups of Ukrainian militants.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory and recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Western attempts to instigate colour revolutions in EU neighbourhood and to organise a 'Belarusian Maidan'.

The article also follows another disinformation narrative about the destabilising effect of the Ukrainian UATV channel which was allowed to broadcast on Belarus' cable networks. No proof of organized arms trafficking from Ukraine to Belarus or of Belarus border violations by Ukrainian militants. EU assistance to Belarus aims at improving the quality of life of Belarusian citizens in a tangible and visible manner, by strengthening its economy, governance, connectivity and society. Find out more about the EU assistance to Belarus here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 143
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 27/03/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Poland, Germany, US, Belarus, Baltic states, Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: West, US presence in Europe, Colour revolutions, Conspiracy theory
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The DniproHES dam will wash Ukraine into the Black Sea in 2020

In August 2016, a delegation of US engineering troops (USACE) visited Ukraine with the aim of examining the state of the DniproHES dam.The American military experts noted urgent needs for maintenance. Without measures securing the construction, the dam would burst and wash Ukraine into the Black sea by 2020. President Poroshenko was informed by the disastrous state of the DniproHES dam, but has not taken any serious measures to reinforce the DniproHES.

Disproof

A recurrent pro-Kremlin narrative about Ukraine as a state on the verge of a collapse. The expert team from the USACE recommends the reconstruction of the DniproHES and the expansion of the Dnipro Waterway.The report describes issues that need to be addressed and suggests measures to take. In 2018, a large-scale reconstruction of the DniproHES started. The project includes the complete restoration of three hydroelectric units of the turnkey station by specialists of the Austrian company ANDRITZ HYDRO. After the installation of the new equipment on the facility, the working capacity of the station will increase. In addition, a number of modern "green" solutions will be introduced during the reconstruction of DniproHES.

NATO is preparing an invasion of Russia

NATO is sending troops to the Russian borders, said Deputy Security Council Secretary of Russian Federation Mikhail Popov. He said that the size of the contingent of the alliance of rapid reaction in two years has increased from 25 to 40 thousand people.

Disproof

No evidence provided. This disinformation message is consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about the belligerent West attempting to encircle and weaken Russia. According to the official website, "the Alliance has deployed four battle-groups to Poland and the Baltic States and additional multinational brigades to Romania. NATO’s Readiness Action Plan bolsters the number of forces deployable in an emergency to over 40,000 and establishes a spearhead Very High Readiness Joint Task Force which is positioned to deploy a 5,000-man brigade anywhere in the Alliance in 2 to 7 days". NATO is not a threat to Russia. NATO's official policy towards Russia was most recently articulated by the heads of state and government of the Alliance at the Warsaw Summit in July 2016. They stated that "the Alliance does not seek confrontation and poses no threat to Russia. But we cannot and will not compromise on the principles on which our Alliance and security in Europe and North America rest". NATO is not encircling Russia. Russia's land border is just over 20,000 kilometres long. Of that, less than one-sixteenth (1,215 kilometres), is shared with NATO members. Russia has land borders with 14 countries. Only five of them are NATO members.

1999 NATO bombings of Yugoslavia killed thousands

The NATO bombing of Yugoslavia which began on 24 March 1999 and ended on 10 June of the same year, according to sources, killed up to 2,500 people in the country. The official pretext for the launch of the operation was the protection of the Kosovo’s Albanian population “against ethnic cleansing and the humanitarian catastrophe”. Thus, the West reacted to the Serbian police and army operations to crush the resistance of the Kosovo Liberation Army, which is considered to be a terrorist in Serbia. Albanian terrorists committed their first attacks against Serbian civilians and policemen in Kosovo in 1996.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the number of civilian casualties of NATO bombing, debunked by Polygraph three years ago. The primary purpose of the campaign was to end violence and repression and force Milosevic to withdraw his military, police and para-military forces from Kosovo. (See NATO statement from 1999.) Since the start of 1998, until the end of 2000, 13,500 persons lost their lives in clashes in Kosovo, out of which approximately 10,800 Albanians, 2,200 Serbian and around 500 Roma and other non-Albanians. United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia exhumated mass graves of Kosovo Albanians discovered on the territory of Serbia proper, for which almost no one has been indicted before domestic courts.