Disinfo: White Helmets cooperate with terrorists to discredit Damascus

Summary

The White Helmets organization is accused of cooperating with terrorists and carrying out propaganda activities against the Syrian government.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narratives portraying the White Helmets as a Western-backed terrorist proxy and, implicitly, denying the responsibility of the Assad regime for chemical attacks perpetrated during the Syrian civil war.

The "White Helmets" movement originated in Syria in 2012. Volunteers save people from the rubble after bombings, despite the danger of dying themselves as a result of repeated airstrikes. Activists have documented the use of chemical weapons in Syria, later confirmed by OPCW. Because of this, they have become the target of an extensive Russian disinformation campaign.

Read previous disinformation claims alleging that evidence confirms chemical attacks in Syria were falsified by the White Helmets, and that the chemical attacks in Syria have been staged and filmed by the media of the Western countries.

Disclaimer

Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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Weinstein’s conviction resembled a Stalinist show trial

The trial of Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein resembles Stalinist trials. Everything that happened in America today was like in our long-past history. Two ladies stepped forward with accusations but no evidence. No material evidence, no witnesses, nothing was presented. In the best tradition of Stalinist trials, a media campaign was launched to turn an Oscar-winning victim into a disgusting beast, and reprisal against him had to be inevitable and demonstrative.

Weinstein was subject to physical influence and was forced to chemically lower the level of his male hormone. The intimidation has made a strong man a sick man.

Disproof

This case is in line with the Kremlin's ongoing disinformation efforts to paint the Western countries as morally degenerate, corrupting "traditional" values - in this case, viciously attacking masculinity. There is zero evidence to support the outlandish and baseless claim that Harvey Weinstein was subjected to physical influence and injected with a hormone suppressant.

Harvey Weinstein, the former Hollywood producer whose history of sexual abuse was brought to light through the #MeToo movement, was convicted by a New York jury on 24 February 2020 on two of five charges: a criminal sex act in the first degree and rape in the third degree. The jury of seven men and five women at the New York supreme court took five days to reach their verdict, finding Weinstein guilty of a criminal sex act in the first degree for forcing oral sex on the former Project Runway production assistant Miriam Haley in 2006, and rape in the third degree of an unnamed woman in a New York hotel in 2013. Weinstein was acquitted of three further charges, including the two most serious counts of predatory sexual assault - which carried a possible life sentence - and an alternative count of rape in the first degree. The prosecutors called 27 witnesses over 12 days, with six women testifying against Weinstein. The timeline of the trial is available here. Weinstein's sentencing is scheduled for March 11.

Ukraine is run by pro-EU oligarchic Nazis supported by the US

The Ukrainian crisis is provoked by pro-EU oligarchic Nazi forces. The pro-EU choice will bring no prospects for Ukraine because it stems from US and NATO’s geopolitical ambitions rather than from Ukrainian people interests. Ukrainian authorities are completely dependent on Washington and Brussels. The US supported them in order to prevent good relations between Ukraine and Russia. By supporting fascists in Ukraine US and EU establishment uncover their undemocratic essence. Apparently, supporting neo-Nazis, antisemites and Russophobes in Ukraine is more important for the West than peace in Ukraine. Radical Ukrainian nationalists, together with radical Islamists, are becoming secret West’s allies. The US brought fascism to Ukraine just as Nazi Germany did in WWII.

Disproof

This is a mix of conspiracies and manipulations aimed to discredit Ukraine, the EU and the US. It is consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin propagandistic narratives about Ukraine ruled by Nazis / Fascists, Ukrainian politicians as West's puppets, West's anti-Russian activities, Russophobia in Ukraine, the West and beyond. It also puts forward ungrounded claim about radical Islamists as secret West's allies.

Read our analyses The “Russophobia” Myth: Appealing to the Lowest Feelings and Nazi east, Nazi west, Nazi over the cuckoo's nest, which explain the prevalence of propagandistic narrative about Russophobia and accusations of Nazism.

MH17 crashed due to an explosion on board

Western investigative groups disregarded numerous details that could have altered the results of the investigation. There were three explosions on board prior to the crash, thanks to home-made bombs on board that were activated from a distance.

Disproof

One of many recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about the MH17 crash attempting to discredit the investigation of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) and suggest alternative explanations for the crash to obscure the truth.

The JIT came to the conclusion 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. According to the JIT, the BUK-TELAR used to down MH17 originated from the 53rd Anti Aircraft Missile brigade, a unit of the Russian army from Kursk in the Russian Federation.