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Information warfare is in full swing and the mind of every individual, including yours, is the target. Masters of the art of persuasion and manipulation are hard at work designing and delivering the “correct” point of view.
Propaganda is nothing new, but, with the internet and social media, the volume of information we are exposed to makes it more difficult to discern fact from fiction. Western powers dominate the information space. We are seeing this play out regarding the war in Ukraine.
There is an obvious message coming from our government through the media – give your full, unquestioning support to Ukraine or you will be branded as unpatriotic and possibly even an agent of Russia.
But there is nothing patriotic about blind obedience. If our government is lying to us, it is all our responsibility to identify it and make it known – this is even more true when World War III is at stake.
As you will see in the following list, many of the biggest stories coming out of Eastern Europe are manipulated or even outright fabricated to sanctify Ukraine as the beacon of freedom and democracy for the world (which they are not) and to lead NATO down the dangerous path of a potential war with Russia.
Note – This article was originally written in March 2022. There have been many additional examples of disinformation since this was first written.
Ghost of Kiev
One of the early pieces of fake news to come from Ukraine was the so-called “Ghost of Kyiv.” In this mythical story, an anonymous Ukrainian fighter pilot shot down as many as 6 Russian jets, making him an Ace (an Ace is a pilot who shoots down at least 5 enemy aircraft). The Ukrainian government, with the help of Western media, has even gone so far as to share fake and/or manipulated photos and videos claiming to show this supposed Ace in action.
An official Twitter account representing the Ukrainian government shared a highly edited video supposedly showing the “Ghost.”
People call him the Ghost of Kyiv. And rightly so — this UAF ace dominates the skies over our capital and country, and has already become a nightmare for invading Russian aircrafts. pic.twitter.com/lngfaMN01I
— Ukraine / Україна (@Ukraine) February 27, 2022
However, it can easily be proven that these images and videos are not what they have been claimed to be. One video clip is taken directly from a video game called Digital Combat Simulator.
The image apparently showing the ghost in his cockpit is actually a photo that was posted on Twitter 3 years ago, showing pilots testing new helmets.
— Defense of Ukraine (@DefenceU) April 25, 2019
Even Congressman Adam Kinzinger, a member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, fell for this propaganda, tweeting a picture and claiming it to be the heroic ‘ghost.’
Unfortunately for Kinzinger, he got trolled. This image shows the face of American comedian Sam Hyde photoshopped over a picture of a pilot.
Clearly, the mysterious ghost is fake. Here is the most likely scenario. Russia was seeing some degree of success in the early days of the war through its air campaigns against Ukrainian command and control nodes, air defense systems, and the Ukrainian air force. Pro-Ukraine propagandists recognized this and immediately conjured up a story in an attempt to embolden Ukraine’s fighters and further inspire Western support for Ukraine.
Later, the Ukrainian government admitted that the story was a hoax.
The “Ghost of Kyiv” really is a ghost because he doesn’t even exist.
The Tale of Snake Island has made the rounds through social media and mainstream news outlets. As the story goes, a Russian warship made radio contact with Ukrainian soldiers defending a location in the Black Sea called Snake Island. The leaked radio transmissions record the Russians demanding that the Ukrainians surrender, to which they allegedly respond, “Russian warship, go f*ck yourself.” The Russians then bombarded the island, killing all the Ukrainians that were there. The “defenders” of the island quickly became heroes and “Russian warship, go f*ck yourself” became a rallying cry for Ukraine.
However, this version of events is not true. Since then, it has been reported that the Snake Island defenders surrendered, in contrast to the Western media narrative that they died bravely, defying the demand to give themselves up. The video below is said to show the Ukrainian garrison being detained by the Russians after their surrender.
What appears to be footage of the Ukrainian garrison of Snake Island surrendering to Russian troops has surfaced; earlier the Ukrainian government had claimed they they refused to surrender and had all died heroically pic.twitter.com/6I6tbQS0Fx
— Russians With Attitude (@RWApodcast) February 26, 2022
Even Zelensky acknowledged that the Ukrainians on Snake Island had not died a heroic death but instead had surrendered and handed themselves over to the Russians.
Following the legend of the Snake Island defenders, the Ukrainians wanted revenge. A story was then crafted making the claim that the Russian warship involved in the leaked radio transmissions, Vasily Bykov, had been sunk by Ukrainian rockets.
The Times of Israel also falsely reported this on March 9th.
Then a week later, on March 16th, the Vasily Bykov was spotted pulling into Sevastopol, a Russian port in Crimea.
Some tried to claim that the Russians simply repainted another patrol boat to hide the fact they had lost one of their ships, but image comparisons between photos taken in 2018 and the recent photos taken after the Snake Island attack show identical rust and paint damage, proving the Vasily Bykov had not been struck as Ukraine had claimed.
Video evidence of the ship without damage a week after it was supposedly sunk.
It turns out the “Russian” ship that had allegedly been struck was a civilian merchant ship.
Vasily Bykov clearly has no damage and is still operating in the conflict.
A constant narrative being pushed by the corporate press is that Russia is intentionally targeting civilians. Dozens of videos have been posted reportedly showing Ukrainian civilians being pulled from the rubble. We have also seen images of destroyed apartment complexes, theaters, and shopping malls.
There is no doubt that there will be collateral damage in any war. This is especially true when the combat is primarily taking place in densely populated urban areas. The militaries of both Russia and Ukraine are equipped with modern weaponry and technology, making the destruction that much more devastating.
The issue here is the claim that the Russians are intentionally targeting civilians. There is no strategic or tactical value whatsoever for the Russians to expend munitions on targets that hold no military significance. The killing of civilians also does not serve to break the will of your enemy – it strengthens it. Ukraine and its allies have used the reports of civilian casualties to build more support for the Ukrainian government, and it’s working.
The Russians eliminated most of the permanent Ukrainian bases in the early days of the war. This has forced the Ukrainian military to take shelter in populated urban areas. Large, well-constructed buildings offer the most protection from shelling as well as from the elements. Once military forces occupy these structures, they become legitimate military targets.
Here we see a video of Ukrainian troops gathered in a preschool.
Ukraine’s soldiers using a school gymnasium as a staging position.
Ukrainian artillery position surrounded by civilian apartment complexes.
Russia’s cruise missile capabilities are some of the best in the world. If they wanted to, they could unleash a level of destruction that has not yet been seen in the 21st century. In any conflict, mistakes will be made, but if the Russians wanted to kill civilians, there would not be many left at this point and every Ukrainian city would have been rubble within the first few days of the war. The fact that we do not see this shows the Russians are limiting their attacks to military targets.
American bio labs and false flags
One of the most intense parts of this war is the talk surrounding the possible use of biological weapons.
Russia accused the United States of having bio labs in Ukraine. The US State Department quickly labeled this claim as “Russian disinformation.” However, it has since been admitted that the Biological Threat Reduction Program, a part of the United States Department of Defense, is involved in several bio labs across Ukraine.
This forced American government officials to shift their narrative from the original story and acknowledge the existence of these labs, but they also insist that the labs are only being used for research purposes – not to develop biological weapons.
After these revelations, rumors began on both sides, each accusing the other of planning to stage a false flag biological attack.
If there is an attack of this sort in this conflict, it is unlikely that it will be carried out by Russia. A precondition to a successful false flag is control of the information domain. Throughout this war, the West has dominated in the sphere of propaganda and information.
For a false flag to be effective, you need to know that the world will believe your version of events. The world views any information coming from the Russian side with intense skepticism while accepting almost all of NATO’s claims without question. This puts NATO in an ideal position to execute a successful false flag.
We also have to consider motive. The Russians are already facing condemnation from virtually every country. Their actions have been extremely unpopular and using bioweapons would only serve to intensify the world’s anger with Russia.
In the West, there is a growing push for more NATO involvement in the war. A no-fly zone has been suggested (which is effectively a declaration of war and would start WWIII), even by high-ranking U.S. officials. Some even want to see NATO ground troops getting involved. Framing Russia for a bio-attack could serve as the perfect pretext for NATO to officially declare war on Russia.
This would not be the first time the US tried to accuse Russia of carrying out a false flag. Before the invasion, the State Department claimed that Putin was planning a mass casualty incident of Russian civilians, complete with crisis actors, to justify an invasion. Obviously, we know this never happened.
With these considerations in mind, if bioweapons are used in Ukraine, they will most likely have been deployed by NATO with the intent of framing Russia.
“I need ammunition, not a ride”
The Associated Press reported that the US asked Ukrainian President Zelensky to flee Ukraine for his own safety. In response to this, he supposedly said, “I need ammunition, not a ride.” The ‘source’ for this quote is an unnamed official in the US government.
Even the mainstream media acknowledges that this quote cannot be confirmed. It relies on a single, anonymous source, and the Biden Administration denies asking Zelensky to leave Ukraine, casting more doubt on the assertion that the quote is real.
Despite this, the media started spreading this story and are using it to continue pushing the questionable idea that Zelensky is a heroic leader.
Zelensky photos on frontline
Prior to the start of the conflict, probably 99% of Americans could not tell you the name of the president of Ukraine, but today, the former comedian/actor turned president is almost worshipped by the West. The amount of propaganda and disinformation coming directly from Zelensky is overwhelming, but some of the most blatant lies are being told by our media.
Shortly after the initial invasion, photos were shared supposedly showing Zelensky on the frontlines of the battle with the Russians, decked out with body armor and ballistic helmet. However, if we look at the original images, we can see these photos were taken well before the invasion began.
Notice the date on the original images.
Information warfare is proving its effectiveness. Politicians on all sides, intelligence agencies, and mainstream media outlets are marching in lockstep, pushing the same narrative about Ukraine. Anyone who steps outside of the bounds they have put in place regarding what can and cannot be said about the conflict is immediately labeled as unpatriotic and an enemy, but as we have clearly seen, their version of events is full of deception.
We need to critically examine each piece of information we are presented. We cannot let our country be pulled into another war, especially when the reasons for war are based on lies.