Kremlin’s US sycophants on a mission to legitimize Russian fakes in the West

28 March, 04:15 PM
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The new American hero of Russian propaganda is TV host Tucker Carlson (Photo:скріншот/YouTube/Fox News)

The new American hero of Russian propaganda is TV host Tucker Carlson (Photo:скріншот/YouTube/Fox News)

During its war against Ukraine, Russia has revealed the weakness not only of its army, but also that of its propaganda. U.S. conservatives have come to the rescue by attempting to legitimize Russian fake news.

For a long time, Russian propaganda brainwashed the minds of not only Russians, but also extensively worked on the Western audience. Still, the war in Ukraine has shown that sooner or later the truth will prevail — the only question is at what cost.

Right now, Russian narratives only work within the Russian Federation itself, partly in China and some other authoritarian countries. The whole world can see what is really happening in Ukraine and unequivocally supports Ukrainians.

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Nevertheless, even in the United States — a country that is perhaps the main ally of Ukraine — metastases of Russian propaganda are spreading ever more aggressively. This is done not only by conspiracy theorists from the highly popular QAnon movement, but also by the conservative Fox News channel.

The new American hero of Russian propaganda is TV host Tucker Carlson

In the latest edition of his program as of this writing, Carlson has falsely claimed that biolaboratories in Ukraine are financed by the Rosemont Seneca investment fund, which is managed by Hunter Biden, the son of U.S. President Joe Biden. By using the name of Hunter Biden, the U.S. conservative media primes a substantial part of GOP backers to believe in the lies of Russian propaganda.

This serves as a continuation of the Russian rhetoric that has gripped the local pro-government media of late. State Duma Chairman Vyacheslav Volodin directly accused Biden Sr. of explicit involvement in the alleged development of bioweapons.

Similar messages picked up with renewed vigor on the first day of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine. On Twitter, one of the longtime fans of the American conspiracy movement QAnon, under the handle WarClandestine, posted a message about 30 biological laboratories in Ukraine.

“China and Russia indirectly (and rightly) blamed the U.S. for the (Covid-19) outbreak. They fear that the U.S. and its allies have even more bioweapons,” wrote WarClandestine, whose account has already been suspended for spreading disinformation.

It is worth mentioning that the Russians have been trying to peddle this lie for several years, but it was only after the start of a full-scale war that the myths about Ukrainian laboratories developing biological weapons “threatening the whole world” began to gain new ground.

Now they are being disseminated not only by the media subordinate to the Russian government, but also by the Russian Ministry of Defense, FM Sergei Lavrov, and the aforementioned Volodin.

It even got to the point that the Russians raised the issue of biolabs in Ukraine at a meeting of the UN Security Council. However, Russian propaganda ran aground there too — the organization's high representative for disarmament issues, Izumi Nakamitsu, said that the UN was "not aware" of any biological weapons programs in Ukraine. The UN added that there is no evidence of this, so Russia's accusations can be considered groundless. Member countries called the Russian allegation of biological weapons in Ukraine "a lie" and "utter nonsense."

The only thing that Russian propaganda does not lie about is that there really are laboratories in Ukraine that are funded by the United States. However, the real goal of their work is to identify the causative agents of infectious diseases that could over time develop into an epidemic. Simply put, these are studies of potentially dangerous diseases and their vectors. All experts in the field stress that such studies are of scientific interest only, and have nothing to do with bioweapons.

Nevertheless, today the false claims of “dangerous" biological laboratories in Ukraine have become a global household topic. The Brookings research team studied the information space and found that in the United States, this rhetoric is supported not only by Fox News, but also by various right-wing conservative podcast hosts. They vehemently share "sensational data" about the work of these laboratories and social networks do practically nothing to stop the flow of falsehood – about 80% of Facebook posts on this topic are not marked as containing partially or completely false information.

The results of this work can be observed all over the world — here, for example, Matthew from Derby in the United Kingdom, accuses the Ukrainian government and independent media of lies, claiming that all the consequences of the bombing in Ukraine are faked, and the Russians are saving the world from biological weapons.

Many experts fear that by spreading such lies, Russia is preparing to use chemical weapons in Ukraine. And the work of conservative U.S. media creates an image of an alternative and false reality in the world, helping Russian propagandists further distort the realities of the ongoing war.

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