Context

Stories in the ‘Context” section are not fakes. We publish them in order to provide greater insight for our readers about the techniques, methods and practices used by the Russian government in its information war.

Russia deflects blame for France’s Yellow Vests

By Polygraph Dmitry Peskov Russian Presidential Press Secretary “Any statements about Russia’s alleged involvement [in the French Yellow Vest protests] are nothing but slander.” Source: TASS Russian News Agency, December 10, 2018 MISLEADING Moscow didn’t pull the trigger, but may be attempting to amplify impact. On Sunday, December 9, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told France’s RTL radio that security services would investigate if the Kremlin had played a part in

“You always place me between two foreigners”

By EU vs Disinfo What just happened? Did Russian state media decide to drop disinformation and replace it with democratic debate? Since when has criticism of the authorities been allowed on prime-time Kremlin TV? Click to watch the video below and see how the talk show host and other discussants giggle towards the end of the video when Leonid Gozman, a well-known opposition politician, openly criticises the Kremlin and its media.

Few people are actually trapped in filter bubbles. Why do they like to say that they are?

By Laura Hazard Owen, for NiemanLab The growing stream of reporting on and data about fake news, misinformation, partisan content, and news literacy is hard to keep up with. This weekly roundup offers the highlights of what you might have missed. We’re not trapped in filter bubbles, but we like to act as if we are. Few people are in complete filter bubbles in which they only consume, say, Fox News, Matt Grossmann writes in a new

Russian Foreign Ministry Distorts Ukraine Famine Legacy

By Polygraph Russian Embassy in Canada Official Russian Foreign Ministry Twitter Account “#Famine in 1930’s in USSR was common tragedy for Ukrainians, Russians, Kazakhs, other Soviet people. Stating that it was ethnically targeted(#Holodomor) is wrong & misleading. History shouldn’t be rewritten & distorted for sake of politicised ‘blame Moscow, #Russia’ narrative” (sic) Source: Twitter MISLEADING The statement omits important facts about the famine. November 24 is Ukraine’s National Holodomor Memorial Day,

Russian troll factory expanded and harassing independent press

By Fatima Tlis, for Polygraph Alexandr Rogers Commentator “Khodorkovsky’s puppets [Novaya Gazeta] are fulfilling an order from the West, trying to sabotage Russia’s defense industry. But that is not the same as writing fake news about ‘hundreds of dead‘ from the non-existent ‘PMC [private military company] Wagner’.” Source: “Journalistic Truth” Web portal, December 3, 2018 FALSE The claims contradict reality The article attacking Novaya Gazeta, the internationally renowned independent Russian newspaper,

American blogger’s Ukraine martial law theory, shared on RT is flawed

By Polygraph Patrick Lancaster Patrick Lancaster, Video Blogger in Donbas “If someone looks at a map of the areas that he’s put martial law in affect, these are all of the pro-Russian areas, the areas that either he did not vote in the 2014 election because they were part of their own new country, Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republic, or that Poroshenko lost.” Source: Going Underground program on RT, Date:

Russian Independent TV vs. Kremlin TV: 3-0

By EU vs Disinfo “Everyone does it, so what’s the problem?”  The notion that Western countries themselves run state-orchestrated disinformation campaigns is a popular pro-Kremlin defensive line. In an apparent attempt to produce evidence in support of this claim, Russian state TV Pervy Kanal decided to portray the British armed forces 77th Brigade, which defends the UK against different kinds of hybrid threats out of barracks in Hermitage, Berkshire. However, Pervy Kanal’s report, which

Russia’s long-term disinformation plan for the Azov Sea

By EU vs Disinfo The moment when the disinformation campaign around the Azov Sea started was not when Russia seized three Ukrainian vessels and their crews after opening fire at them on November 25. In fact the campaign had been launched much earlier. More than a year ago, Russian media started publishing claims of “Ukraine deepening the seabed for a NATO fleet at the Azov Sea”. In fact no evidence

Anatomy of a Russian media escalation

​By Polygraph Point of View The latest escalation in the Sea of Azov provides a case study of how Russia’s vast state disinformation apparatus is employed to muddy the waters and curb Western attempts to halt Russian aggression. What we know: Three Ukrainian ships were fired upon and then captured by Russian vessels as the Ukrainians were preparing to transit through the Kerch Strait in the Sea of Azov on

Russian Reporter Blames George H.W. Bush and the Persian Gulf War for Fomenting ‘Chaos’ in the Middle East

By Polygraph Dmitry Smirnov Kremlin Special Correspondent for Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper “At the age of 94, George Bush Sr. died – the man who started the Gulf War, marking the beginning of the current chaos in the Middle East. If we say nothing but good about the dead, about Bush Sr. say nothing.” Source: Twitter MISLEADING President George H.W. Bush did not start the war in the Persian Gulf. On

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