Disinfo: Western media ignore key role of neo-Nazis in Maidan and war in Eastern Ukraine

Summary

Western media have kept mostly silent about the role of neo- and classical Nazi groups in the Maidan and the war in Eastern Ukraine, choosing to airbrush them out of the narrative about “Russian aggression” they have created. The ultra-nationalists brought Petro Poroshenko to power.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative portraying Ukrainian politics and society as dominated by Nazi/fascist ideology and aiming to obfuscate ongoing acts of aggression by Russian armed forces in Ukraine. See similar cases here. Far-right groups played a very limited role throughout the Euromaidan, had not initiated the protests, and did not bring Poroshenko to power. Petro Poroshenko won the Presidency in a competitive and transparent election, as reported by the OSCE. Western media outlets and organisations have continuously covered the Ukrainian far-right since the outbreak of Russian aggression, including but not limited to its involvement in the Donbas conflict, ties to government officials, collaboration with Russian right-wing extremists, and involvement in politics.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 163
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 05/09/2019
  • Language/target audience: English
  • Country: Ukraine
  • Keywords: Mainstream media, Petro Poroshenko, War in Ukraine, Nazi/Fascist
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Violations by the Ukrainian army in the Donbas are secret and nobody investigates them

Former Verkhovna Rada deputy, Alexey Zhuravko, published documents that testify to the crimes of the Ukrainian Armed Forces against the civilian population of the Donbas. Reported cases are dated from 2014-2015 and addressed to the Minister of Defence of Ukraine, Stepan Poltorak. According to experts, information about the crimes of the Ukrainian military in the east of the country has become public knowledge more than once. However, analysts believe that the new government in Kyiv will not be engaged in a full-scale and comprehensive investigation of human rights violations in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

Disproof

A recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about the Ukrainian army and its impunity, aggression against the civilian population in Donbas. The Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine denied such allegations, noting that a sentence has been passed on each existing case, and the Main Military Prosecutor’s Office is constantly monitoring the issue of combating crimes in the conflict zone. The UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission documented cases of human rights violations in Donbas every year, and this information is not secret.

The US intends to "discipline the EU" from the position of a senior partner

The EU is in crisis: a crisis in migration policy, in relations with each other, a crisis in relation to sanctions against Russia, and so on. The United States wants to keep under its vigilant control the processes of the evolution and transformation of the European Union. They’re not going to leave Europe. The US will try to rebuild relations on the basis of a senior partner’s relation to a junior.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about US presence in Europe, portraying Europe as a vassal of the USA. Russian disinformation sources like to claim that almost all European countries are no longer truly sovereign. The EU Member States are sovereign countries and make sovereign decisions about their own security and policies. The US is an important ally to the EU but EU policy is not determined by the US, as explained by the EU High Representative. The EU is not "a young relative of US" and not dependent on the USA in terms of foreign policymaking and therefore it is a conspiracy theory presented without any evidence.

Ukraine's political goal is war with Russia

Ukraine’s political goal remains the same – war with Russia.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the war in Ukraine. The international community, including the European Union recognizes and condemns clear violations of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity by acts of aggression by the Russian armed forces since February 2014. One of the promises the current president of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy made during the election campaign was to raise the question with the guarantors of theBudapest memorandum of supporting Ukraine in an effort to end the war, return the temporarily occupied territories and force Russia to compensate Ukraine for the losses incurred. Zelenskyy thencontinued mentioning the importance of ending the war in Ukraine. Recently he said that Donbas must be rebuilt upon completion of the war.