dedo Vasiľ (ded_vasilij) wrote,
dedo Vasiľ


The Brussels Attacks: "Europe's fault. Or maybe they were staged".

The appalling 22 March terrorist attacks in Brussels attracted a lot of attention in pro-Kremlin media outlets. Sadly, most chose to spread confusion, fear and mistrust via disinformation stories about the tragic events.

A repeated accusation was that the bombing was Angela Merkel’s fault: because she invited refugees to Europe (although the attackers were not refugees); or because she held talks with President Erdogan, who supposedly founded Daesh ( Many European outlets also multiplied disinformation, originating in Russia (, that Chancellor Merkel had previously taken a selfie with one of the attackers.

Two major pro-Kremlin’s outlets blamed the West in its entirety. According to TV anchor Dmitry Kiselyov, the attacks were a result of European arrogance, as the EU refused to fight terrorism with Russia ( A very similar line was taken in Vladimir Solovyov’s show (
On the day of the attacks, pro-Kremlin outlets also tried to convince their readers that Russia had warned against the suicide bombers who carried out the attacks ( Two Belarusian brothers who were accused of being the suicide bombers were soon giving interviews – alive and well – and denied any possibility of being involved in the terror (

Other outlets took the opposite tack and claimed that there were no terror attacks at all - the whole scene had allegedly been staged. There were many supposed offenders: "unnamed elites"; the CIA and Mossad:; Turkey:; and NATO:


How to violate international law "in accordance with international law"

From purely quantitative point of view, Ukraine remains the most popular disinformation topic. In the table, you will find multiple cases where the old “Ukrainian nazi coup backed by USA/NATO/West” disinformation has been recycled. Again, it is accompanied by numerous claims that Ukraine is not a State and Ukrainians are not a nation. One video describes rampant cannibalistic rituals in Ukrainian society (

Disinformation pieces also continue to be rife about the Ukrainian pilot Nadiya Savchenko. One Czech pro-Kremlin outlet repeated the previously spread disinformation about Savchenko being willing to sell captives’ body organs ( Other media repeated false allegations that Savchenko is a convicted villain and murderer.

A lot of focus continues on Crimea too. Also here, most of the disinformation has already been debunked: that Russia's intervention prevented a bigger war; or that Russia prevented a genocide of Russian speaking inhabitants there. Sputnik created a poll according to which one out of three Europeans considers Crimea part of Russia ( And TV anchor Vladimir Solovyov and one of his guests attempted to claim that the annexation of Crimea could not possibly be a violation of international law: (Image: Voyennaya Tayna on YouTube)

Defending war criminals and intimidating with terror threats

While a Ukrainian pilot falsely accused of killing two Russian journalists was depicted in the most inhumane way, Russian pro-Kremlin outlets fiercely defended Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadžić, found guilty of the Srebrenica massacre that killed over 8,000 people (among other crimes). His trial was proclaimed as unlawful and unfair on the very same evening in both Dmitry Kiselyov’s and Vladimir Solovyov’s shows. In the table you will again find the precise timecodes for the statements.

In Disinformation Review 12 we informed you about a fake AZOV video. Actors pretending to be fighters in the Ukrainian battalion threatened the Dutch people with a terror attack in case they voted against the Association Agreement with Ukraine, and burned the flag of the Netherlands.

In a matter of days after the video appeared, the Ukrainian secret service stated that the video was probably of Russian origin. Last weekend, a Bellingcat investigation presented the proofs publicly. According to the journalists, the fake video is linked to the “troll factory” in Saint Petersburg.
(Image: Vesti Nedeli on YouTube)
Thank you very much for your reports, we are looking forward to new ones.

East StratCom Task Force
Follow us on Twitter @EUvsDisinfo

For contributions, please e-mail
To sign up for this newsletter, please click here:
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.
Tags: disinformation review

  • Post a new comment


    Comments allowed for friends only

    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded