dedo Vasiľ (ded_vasilij) wrote,
dedo Vasiľ


Issue 24 -  26 April 2016

Violation of the law is just “an independent interpretation”

During recent days, many pro-Kremlin journalists and commentators have become experts on international law. The impulse for this probably came from an opinion piece written by Alexander Bastrykin, the head of the Investigative Committee of Russia ( In his piece, Mr Bastrykin claims that the EU and US co-opt international law into their war against Russia, which is, he claims, proved by the case of Yukos, the decision on Litvinenko, the MH17 investigation, or the controversy around the football World Cup 2018 in Russia. In reality, of course, it is very hard to imagine how the US and the EU could use international law against Russia in the context of cases investigated by: a public inquiry in the UK (Litvinenko case); or the Dutch safety board (MH17).

And yet the cases continued. In one Pyotr Tolstoy show, we heard that the simulated attack on the American warship in the Baltic Sea was in accordance with law (, although it is at least against the bilateral agreement between the two countries ( Only a day later, in another of Tolstoy’s shows, we heard that the US ship was not supposed to be in the “Russian” Baltic Sea at all ( To note, the Baltic Sea is in fact enclosed by no less than eight other countries apart from Russia; and the simulated attack on the US ship took place in international waters.
Vladimir Solovyov’s show presented one explanation of this trend ( the annexation of Crimea, condemned by multiple international organizations including the United Nations, was according to Vyacheslav Nikonov, the head of Russkiy Mir Foundation, simply an “independent interpretation of international law”.

A very “independent” interpretation was also presented on human rights in ( that human rights have been “actively exploited by Western and American structures to manipulate, blackmail and attempt to destabilize and pressure Russia,” said Tatyana Moskalkova, the new Human Rights Ombudsman of Russia, underlining that in her new function she will have enough resources to counter this trend.

Denying the obvious & inventing the non-existent

One of the most aggressive disinformation techniques is simply to negate reality, and build a parallel version of a situation. In the latest Disinformation Review table, you will again see multiple examples of this. “Russia has not made any specific decision to cut economic ties with Ukraine", it is claimed ( - although Russia unilaterally decided to exclude Ukraine from a free trade bloc of former Soviet countries starting only in January this year. “OSCE report accuses Ukrainian authorities of a huge number of gross violations of human rights.” ( - and yet this supposed report simply does not exist. “Russia has never waged wars of aggression” ( - although only during the last decade Russia intervened militarily in two sovereign states.

Most of these disinformation pieces relate to Ukraine, which is still the most targeted country by pro-Kremlin disinformation outlets. So, accusations are made up to justify Russia’s illegal kidnapping and unlawful trial of Nadiya Savchenko: e.g. that it is in fact Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko who does not want Savchenko to return to Ukraine because he sees her as a political rival (

Disinformation can seriously damage your sense of reality

Throughout the last months, pro-Kremlin media often report that Russia has nothing to do with the Minsk agreements, because it is not part of them; or because Russia has already fulfilled everything and now it is only up to Ukraine to fulfil its obligations (although the unrealized ceasefire, or restoring control of the state border to the Ukrainian government still depend very much on Russia).

Probably due to this confusion, Russian media distorted the statement of Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni. The factual statement that the sanctions against Russia will be discussed at the end of June and that a decision will be taken based on assessment of the implementation of the Minsk agreement was translated by pro-Kremlin media as “Paolo Gentiloni calls for lifting of sanctions against Russia” (
Thank you very much for your reports, we are looking forward to new ones.

East StratCom Task Force
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Tags: ctrlc+ctrilv, disinformation review

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