Russian misinformthe about Covid-19 itself is a dangerous virus05.05.2020
In a world that is struggling to survive the onslaught of the invisible enemy,
Kremlin produces its coronavirus-inspired misinformation campaign .
John Dobson, a former British diplomat in Moscow, who worked in the office of
Prime Minister John Mayor between 1995 and 1998, reports the following in the
article of The Sunday Guardian.
The EU has said emphasized Russian pro-Kremlin media inciting "confusion,
panic and fear" as part of a broader strategy of "undermining European societies
within in a report this week." He is sure that Kremlin all-round misinformation
campaign is to discredit health systems of western countries, particularly,
undermining public confidence in national health systems. The ominous goal of
misinformation is to prevent effective response to outbreaks by hurting
governments in the eyes of their citizens.
Russia has always denied previous accusations of western governments and
intelligence agencies, which confirm that RF is using misinformation or thought-
making campaigns. But when arguments are literally black and white in Moscow-
funded news sources, such objections should not be ignored.
Although much of Russian propaganda and misinformation aimed at western
countries, targets its domestic audience as well, in order to strengthen its own
regime and strengthen its anti-western sentiment. Finding the "hand of the West" in
the face of all the misfortunes and failures of RF is a common theme used by the
Russian government to evade responsibility and to raise nationalist sentiment.
Take a look at news since 22th of January produced with Russian news agency
“Sputnik”. Earlier it was known as the “Voice of Russia (Golos Rosiji)” based in
Moscow, with offices in India, Beijing and many capitals of western countries.
Since it was created by executive order of the President of Russia on December 9,
2013, it is safe to assume that his voice is the true voice of the Kremlin.
Conspiracy theory in this publication seeks to cast a shadow on the US / NATO as
the likely creators of the new virus in order to achieve its political and economic
goals. “Sputnik” claims that there are many US and NATO biological laboratories
around China that have leaked the coronavirus, but for some reason they blame
China. As evidence, “Sputnik” refers to old posters published by China with
headlines such as "Everybody Should Fight American Bacterial Aggression."
Russia has repeatedly crossed with China in the war on misinformation about the
coronavirus, claiming that these biological weapons were deployed by America to
halt China's growth.
On 18th of March 2020 one popular Russian Internet site, which is targeted at
subscribers of “Medialeaks”, was firm stating that COVID-19 was created inside
the US laboratory in 2015. It proves this fact with the unpublished and
questionable study by researchers at . Linking the coronavirus to the US and its
biological weapons stockpile is a recurring Kremlin misinformation.
A week later, trying to justify the kind of society that President Putin is creating,
Medialeaks stated that "only authoritarian states and closed societies will be able to
protect their populations from the coronavirus and from future pandemics."
Currently, the Russian economy is experiencing deep problems with the collapse
of the price of oil and raw materials, which is 60% of its GDP. So what's better
than using coronavirus survival as an argument for a post-globalist and closed
society? It is the authoritarian society that President Putin, the savior of the nation,
promotes. Of course, Medialeaks did not point out that it was an authoritarian state,
China, which concealed information about the virus, censured and detained those
doctors and culprits who tried to sound the alarm and warn their fellow citizens
when they realized the severity of the coronavirus threat.
One of President Putin's strategic goals is to weaken European solidarity, so it is
not surprising that a number of misinformation issues are spreading the apocalyptic
scenario. For example, on March 15, the influential Russian national television
channel Russia 24 demonstrated in prime time a major program about the
"collapse" of the EU's Schengen area, closing borders between most EU countries.
The topic was also made public on the same day by the Kremlin TV channel
Russia Today, which airs in the West. Both used border closures as proof that it
was the first step to abandoning The EU is in favor of rebuilding Europe's nation
states. Both concluded that the European idea had failed and the coronavirus was
the beginning of the transition to different political cultures. The collapse of the
European Union is a constant pro-Kremlin story. The program did not point out
that the Schengen Border Code is explicitly designed to allow temporary freezing
of free movement if there is a serious threat to public policy or internal security, as
in the case of the coronavirus. The EU has made it clear that all borders will reopen
when the pandemic is over, with neither Russia Today nor Russia mentioned 24.
On a similar topic, the Kremlin website, Rubaltik.ru, targeted at Russian citizens,
also broadcasts topics about the inevitable breakup of the EU. Notably, he argued
that the coronavirus would be for NATO and the EU as Chernobyl was for the
Soviet Union. Chornobyl was a prelude to the collapse of the Soviet Union, so the
consequence is that the coronavirus will cause the EU to collapse! There was no
evidence of this extraordinary conclusion, and no mention was made of the EU's $
37 billion initiative to provide liquidity to small businesses and the health sector in
the euro area.
The Baltic states have long been considered the most likely point of conflict in the
future. It is not surprising, therefore, that a great deal of misinformation is
concentrated in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. All three countries quickly joined
the EU and NATO after the collapse of the Soviet Union, and still have a large
Russian-speaking population. The Russian website Rubaltica.ru is popular with
them, and the Kremlin considers it a natural means of propaganda and
On March 19, the website claimed that the Baltic countries could not survive the
economic shock of a coronavirus pandemic. The site states that EU experts stress
that the Baltic countries are undergoing a huge economic blow, significantly worse
than the 2008-09 financial crisis. The coronavirus crisis will completely destroy
the entire model of the post-Soviet development of the Baltic countries, the
economic shock will be so severe that their future will be best facilitated by the
return to Russia. The website did not point out that although the Baltic countries
have difficult times when the pandemic is over, their citizens will still be far more
prosperous than their Russian neighbors.
Many of these false statements can often seem improbable. But that's not how
Russian misinformation works. Russia is behind the swarms of online lying
people, spreading misinformation about many topics, not just about coronavirus,
though that is the last topic. These points do not try to "sell" the idea, but rather
confuse the audience by spreading the deception. By spreading coronavirus
misinformation, Russian actors are threatening public safety, distracting from the
global response to the challenge. It is dangerous. Russian misinformation is itself a
virus against which the world needs to be vaccinated.