More than a third of the cases this week are devoted to Ukraine. This number roughly corresponds with the total number of cases on Ukraine in the disinformation database. Since the database was established in 2015, pro-Kremlin disinformation outlets have been targeting Ukraine’s statehood (around 100 cases), its leadership (around 700), and its language (around 150 cases). The database has more than 700 cases of disinformation on Crimea, and at least 200 cases accusing Ukraine of being Nazi or fascist.

This week was no exception. The same lies are repeated, reused, reprised, recycled, reinvented, reproduced and re-represented. The palette of disinformation is rather monotonous.

NATO forces Ukraine to adopt an anti-Russian foreign policy” – 300 cases along the same line; NATO forcing Ukraine to do this or that. “The war against Donbas residents is waged by successors of the Hitlerites” – more than 30 cases claim connections between Hitler and Ukraine’s current political leadership. Several cases attempts to question Russia’s connection to the MH17 crash this week – 180 cases are recorded in the database. “Euromaidan was staged by foreign forces to weaken Russia” – almost 80 cases in the database connect “Russophobia” to Ukraine. “Ukraine will legalise marijuana to manipulate the citizens” – this is at least somewhat original, with only one previous case.

 

A Fraternal Nation

In early October, Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed dissatisfaction with the negative coverage of Ukraine in Kremlin-controlled media:

“We should not cast our closest neighbour and fraternal nation in some kind of unfavorable light.”

So far, the Kremlin media have apparently not been heeding Mr. Putin’s advice.

Poland is another favoured target of the Kremlin’s disinformation efforts. Supposedly, Poland’s economy is dependent on the low standard of life in the country, its purpose is to serve as a barrier against Russia, and elite media in Poland aggregate anti-Russian sentiment. And gay men from Lithuania have, according to Sputnik, interfered in the Polish elections.

 

Attacks on the LGBTI Community

This week’s disinformation gives us several cases of attacks on the LGBTI community. Gazprom-owned NTV claims affluent gay men have convened in Brussels to buy children at a “livestock bazaar”. The Gay community is also a security risk for Russia, as it is being manipulated by the West into accepting “Western values”. And the LGBTI community represents enmity against God, a symbol for a licentious lifestyle and moral decline. A search for the word “Gay” in the database yields almost 60 cases.

Disinformation is the “art” of lying. Lying should be done in a convincing and appealing way, and the disinformation outlets are using well-worn, well-known tropes and narratives. Corrupt Elites, Threatened Values, Threatened Sovereignty, Imminent Collapse. We see them all displayed this week; we see them in our database. We see them every day. New forms, new outlets. But same old lies.

 


related disinfo cases

Date
Title
Outlets
Country
14.10.2019
  • 60 minut @Rossiya 1 - YouTube
Ukraine
14.10.2019
  • 5-tv.ru
Ukraine
14.10.2019
  • Sputnik Estonia
Estonia
13.10.2019
  • Pervyi Kanal
Ukraine
13.10.2019
  • 5-tv.ru,
  • 5-tv.ru
Ukraine
13.10.2019
  • Rossia 24 - YouTube
US, Russia
12.10.2019
  • SouthFront - English
Greece, Ukraine, Russia
12.10.2019
  • Izvestia,
  • Sputnik Latvia - Russian
Russia, Latvia
12.10.2019
  • Sputnik Italia
Africa, US
11.10.2019
  • 60 minut @Rossiya 1 - YouTube
Ukraine
11.10.2019
  • RT Germany (old)
US, Russia
11.10.2019
  • Sputnik Abkhazia - Russian
USSR, Baltic states, Latvia
11.10.2019
  • RT France - YouTube
France, Ukraine, Russia
11.10.2019
  • Sputnik Lithuania - Russian
Poland, Lithuania
10.10.2019
  • rg.ru,
  • dan-news.info,
  • SouthFront - English,
  • lug-info.com
Ukraine
10.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Hungary, Poland, Ukraine, Latvia
10.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Ukraine
09.10.2019
  • Sputnik Germany
Malaysia, The Netherlands, Ukraine, Russia
09.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Belarus, Ukraine, Russia
09.10.2019
  • Sputnik Poland
Poland, Russia
09.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Ukraine, Russia
09.10.2019
  • Moldavskie Vedomosti,
  • Alfanews.md,
  • fondsk.ru,
  • Press.try.md
UK, Czech Republic, Moldova
09.10.2019
  • Sputnik Italia
Ukraine, Russia
09.10.2019
  • ntv.ru
Russia
09.10.2019
  • Sputnik Spain
Romania, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Russia
09.10.2019
  • Sputnik Armenia - Russian
Armenia, US, Belarus, Russia
08.10.2019
  • Teleskop
Ukraine, Russia
08.10.2019
  • Sputnik Germany
Romania, Bulgaria, Georgia, US, Ukraine, Russia
08.10.2019
  • Vitbich
US, Belarus, Lithuania, Russia, Latvia
08.10.2019
  • Sputnik Estonia
Estonia
07.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
US
07.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Ukraine
07.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
UK, US, Russia
07.10.2019
  • Sputnik Poland
Poland
07.10.2019
  • RT English
Ukraine, Russia
07.10.2019
  • RT English
Ukraine, Russia
07.10.2019
  • Pervyi Kanal
Ukraine
06.10.2019
  • Voskresnyi vecher s Vladimirom Solovyovym - YouTube
Ukraine, Russia
05.10.2019
  • ntv.ru,
  • Twitter Resource,
  • ntv.ru,
  • kp.ru,
  • Vesti Krym,
  • 7dniv.info
Belgium, US
05.10.2019
  • RT English
Syria
04.10.2019
  • RT Germany - YouTube
Romania, Poland, US, Russia
04.10.2019
  • vz.ru
Ukraine
04.10.2019
  • Sputnik Arabic - (sptnkne.ws)
Ukraine, Russia
03.10.2019
  • Sputnik Serbia - Cyrillic
Serbia, Russia
03.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Baltic states, Ukraine, Russia
03.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Syria, Belarus, Russia
03.10.2019
  • Sputnik Armenia - Russian
Armenia, Ukraine, Russia
03.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Norway, Belarus, Russia
03.10.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Belarus
02.10.2019
  • Golos Moldova,
  • vz.ru,
  • agitpro.su
The Netherlands, Ukraine, Russia
01.10.2019
  • 5-tv.ru
Ukraine
01.10.2019
  • Sputnik Azerbaijan - Russian
Syria, Russia
01.10.2019
  • Moldavskie Vedomosti
Moldova, Russia
01.10.2019
  • Sputnik Armenia - Russian
Armenia, Ukraine
29.09.2019
  • Sputnik Germany
Malaysia, Australia, The Netherlands, Ukraine, Russia
29.09.2019
  • 5-tv.ru
US
25.09.2019
  • Sputnik Belarus - Russian
Poland, Baltic states, Russia
23.09.2019
  • Sputnik Armenia - Russian
Armenia, Baltic states, Ukraine
21.09.2019
  • Sputnik Serbia - Cyrillic
France, US
20.09.2019
  • Sputnik Spain
Syria
13.09.2019
  • Sputnik Serbia - Latin,
  • cafe.ba
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro
13.09.2019
  • Sputnik Serbia - Latin
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro
13.09.2019
  • Sputnik Armenia - Russian
Armenia, Russia
10.09.2019
  • Sputnik Serbia - Latin,
  • srbijadanas.com
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro
24.08.2019
  • Sputnik Moldova
Moldova, US