How pro-Russian narratives are sometimes promoted by western experts
After the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, the European Union and Western countries started taking on a series of measures to counteract and prevent the spread of Russian propaganda in the global media space. In early March, the EU imposed sanctions on Russian state-owned outlets RT/Russia Today and Sputnik’s broadcasting in the EU. An additional 30 countries have completely or partially stopped broadcasting Russian propaganda channels.
Although limits have been imposed on the broadcasting of Russian state-owned TV channels in Western countries, Russian propaganda narratives continue appearing in the foreign media.
Some instances have probed the Ukrainian government to react. On August 17, 2022, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine appealed to the German government to address the spread of Kremlin propaganda narratives, which were featured in the publications of Deutsche Welle’s Russian service.
The controversial opinions of some Western experts also continue to cause damage in the information field.
The Center for Countering Disinformation at the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine has analyzed the western media sphere and has published a series of lists of Western experts who have been noted to promote pro-Russian narratives in Western countries.
It should be noted that the selected experts do not openly support Russia’s actions, but their statements contain Russian propaganda narratives. We have collected how pro-Russian narratives are sometimes promoted by western experts.
Jan Oberg — a Swedish-Danish researcher. In an article published on March 22, 2022, Oberg argued that weapons shouldn’t be supplied to Ukraine, accusing NATO of warmongering.
In fact, of course, not a single army of NATO countries is fighting in Ukraine. All foreign fighters are volunteer members of the International Legion, a component of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. As for the warmongering idea — it’s worth remembering it was Russia that began shelling Ukrainian cities on the morning of February 24, 2022.
Richard Black — a former American senator and politician. In his interview for the Executive Intelligence Review on May 6, 2022, he argued there is a need for peace agreements with Moscow and that Russia was not involved in the Buchа massacre.
In reality, it has been confirmed that the Russian army had killed 1,100 people in the Bucha district, 419 of whom were residents of the town. Such numbers make the Bucha massacre one of the most brutal instances of mass murder in the nearly-seven months of Russia’s war in Ukraine.
Furthermore, Ukraine is actively cooperating with the International Criminal Court to facilitate investigations into crimes committed on Ukrainian soil.
Helga Zepp-LaRouche — President of The Schiller Institute in Germany. On July 19, 2022, she called on the international community to lift sanctions against Russia and argued it is the West and NATO to blame for the war, not Russia.
The West has hardly benefitted from the war in Ukraine. Russian aggression has caused a humanitarian crisis, turned millions of Ukrainians into refugees, and has undermined global food and energy security, causing an economic crisis.
Ukraine also doesn’t get weapons from Western partners so easily. As was stated in June 2022 by Ukraine’s Deputy Minister of Defense Hanna Maliar, Ukraine had received 10% of the requested weapons from the West at the time of the statement being made.
Mislav Kolakušić — a Croatian lawyer and member of the European Parliament. Since the start of the full-scale war, he attacked the EU’s policy towards Russia and called sanctions ineffective.
In reality, sanctions against Russia are effective. Russia’s overall imports have dropped more than 50% this year, the prices are rising, and there is a technological crisis due to some embargoes.
The Russian economy is under high pressure. After the full-scale war started, there were so many bans imposed against Russia that it became the world’s most-sanctioned nation — quite the title.
Verify information and content in social media. Pay attention to expert analysis and verify their pre-existing bias. Check the expert’s credibility. Don’t let personal beliefs cloud your judgment, and do not fall for manipulations.