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New #DisinfoReview from the EEAS East StratCom Task Force
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Issue 38 -  06 September 2016

Whose tanks are on whose territory?


Once again, the main topic of interest this week for channels specialised in spreading disinformation is Ukraine. The pro-Kremlin outlets were repeating their tried and tested lines about a “fascist coup” and “illegitimate government” - e.g. in the popular TV show Vremya Pokazhet (http://bit.ly/2czT4tt). They recycled a disinformation story that they have been repeating for almost two years now, that Poland is allegedly willing to annex the territories of Western Ukraine (http://bit.ly/2bI087t). However, Poland is apparently making this “annexation” harder for itself, as it is also building a wall on the Ukrainian border to keep out Ukrainian migrants - at least according to a story written by the official channel of Ministry of Defence, TV Zvezda (http://bit.ly/2ckA9hP).
Image released by the Foreign COmmonwealth Office at @UKinUkraine
A Slovak outlet, whose reporters are unaware whose tanks are on whose territory, informs us about Ukrainian aggression against Russia (http://bit.ly/2cjdBOE). In a similar manner, a Czech outlet published a story about Ukraine preparing for war, while Vladimir Putin calls for a security conference (http://bit.ly/2bQ77LE) - here the reporters are apparently unaware of the thousands of Russian soldiers waiting for deployment on Ukraine's border.

Apart from describing Ukraine as a bloodlusting state, the pro-Kremlin channels also stated that the country is being governed from outside. In one Russian disinformation outlet, George Soros is the one who gives the orders on which laws will or will not be passed (http://bit.ly/2bZ8ExR). In a Czech outlet it is the CIA who orders Ukrainians authorities to “escalate war against Russia” (http://bit.ly/2bYt8lH). In the already mentioned Slovak article, it is an “international conspiracy” that orchestrates the events in Ukraine. Besides ordering Ukrainians what to do, the West has also stopped caring about Ukraine, it has cut all its financial help to the country - a Russian disinformation outlet informs (http://bit.ly/2bI087t). According to another Russian outlet, the West has decided to loot Ukraine (http://bit.ly/2bZZxLf).

Welcome campaign for the “DNR”


Ukraine received a huge portion of disinformation from one particular Czech outlet called Parlamentní Listy (The Parliamentary Sheet). This website published an interview with a former informer of the Czechoslovak communist secret police (StB): http://bit.ly/2bN99pH. The “analyst” repeats all of the pro-Kremlin disinformation and conspiracy lines in one single interview: there are “anti-national fascist” (sic!) oligarchs ruling Ukraine, there is NATO aggression against Russia, the migration crisis is orchestrated by the US, who also organised the coup in Turkey, etc.

The same outlet also published a “report” from Western Ukraine (http://bit.ly/2c1hFSP). The article offers no real signs that the author actually visited the country - instead it repeats the well-known narrative about Ukraine being a country filled with fascists. The article even claims that the Ukrainian Trident is a banderite symbol (the symbol is approximately 1,000 years older than Stepan Bandera).
This anti-Ukraine disinformation campaign was published during the same period the Czech far-right extremists opened a centre for the illegitimate “Donetsk National Republic” in Czech Republic (http://bit.ly/2c3Fp8P). Despite the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs clearly stating that because the DNR is not a state, it cannot have a consular office in the Czech Republic, the pro-Kremlin outlets were celebrating the opening of the “first official DNR office in Europe” (http://bit.ly/2c6lZEO).

When secret agents uncover the secrets


Remember Anna Chapman? Six years ago, she was arrested as an illegal spy of the Russian foreign secret service, and later deported to Russia as a part of a prisoners’ exchange. Nicknamed “Agent 90-60-90”, the attractive woman quickly became a celebrity in her country, and apart from posing for the Russian version of MAXIM magazine in underwear, she also began hosting her own TV show on the NTV channel.
Last week, the show “Secrets of Anna Chapman” covered the popular phenomenon of the game Pokemon Go. And the secret agent’s show unveiled a very original interpretation of this game, claiming it was created by foreign secret services in order to spy on people like Julian Assange (http://bit.ly/2c05jfI). The founder of Wikileaks has spent the last four years at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, but apparently, foreign secret services needed Pokemon Go to locate him there.
Download the FULL TABLE (.pdf) of disinformation pieces
collected for the Disinformation Review issue No 38

East StratCom Task Force
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For new contributions, please e-mail jakub.kalensky@eeas.europa.eu
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The Disinformation Review collects examples of pro-Kremlin disinformation all around Europe and beyond. Every week, it exposes the breadth of this campaign, showing the countries and languages targeted. We're always looking for new partners to cooperate with us for that.
The Disinformation Digest analyses how pro-Kremlin media see the world and what independent Russian voices say. It follows key trends on Russian social media, so you can put pro-Kremlin narratives into their wider context. And finally… some Friday Fun before the weekend!
DISCLAIMER: The Disinformation Review is a compilation of reports received from members of the mythbusting network. The mythbusting network comprises of over 450 experts, journalists, officials, NGOs and Think Tanks in over 30 countries. Please note that opinions and judgements expressed here do not represent official EU positions.
Copyright © 2016 European External Action Service, All rights reserved.

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