Fabricated “Russian Invasion”: Big Lies Risk Confrontation with Russia

By Stephen Lendman
Global Research, August 29, 2014
Region: Russia and FSU
 
Theme: Media Disinformation
In-depth Report: UKRAINE REPORT
 
 
MediaLiesTVClaims about Russia invading Ukraine are fabricated. Big Lies proliferate. On Thursday, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki lied saying
 
“we’re seeing…a pattern of escalating aggression in Ukraine from the Russians and Russian-backed separatists.”
 
“And it’s clear that Russia has not only stepped up its presence in eastern Ukraine and intervened directly with combat forces – armored vehicles, artillery, and surface-to-air systems – and is actively fighting Ukrainian forces as well as playing a direct supporting role to the separatist proxies and mercenaries.”
 
The White House is considering a range of options, she said. “We have additional tools and sanctions that we could certainly choose to put in place.”
 
US ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, repeated the Big Lie. His Twitter messages falsely claim “an increasing number of Russian troops are intervening directly in fighting on Ukrainian territory.”
 
Russia sent its newest air defense systems, he claims. At an August 28 emergency Security Council meeting, US envoy Samantha Power lied saying:
 
“Instead of listening, instead of heeding the demands of the international community and the rules of the international order, at every step, Russia has come before this Council to say everything except the truth.”
 
“It has manipulated. It has obfuscated. It has outright lied. So we have learned to measure Russia by its actions and not by its words.”
 
On Friday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov debunked spurious invasion claims,” saying:
 
“It’s not the first time we’ve heard wild guesses, though facts have never been presented so far.”
 
“There have been reports about satellite imagery exposing Russian troop movements.”
 
“They turned out to be images from video games. The latest accusations happen to be much the same quality.”
 
“We’ll react by remaining persistent in our policies to stay bloodshed and give a start to the nationwide dialogue and negotiations about the future of Ukraine, with participation of all Ukrainian regions and political forces, something that was agreed upon in Geneva back in April and in Berlin (in August), yet what is being so deliberately evaded by our Western partners now.”
 
On Friday, Vladimir Putin noted clear self-defense forces success against Kiev’s military.
 
At the same time, Donbass area fighting poses a “grave danger” to beleaguered residents, he said.
 
He and Lavrov deplore war. They’ve all-out for peaceful conflict resolution since fighting erupted in April.
 
“(O)nce again (he) call(ed) on the Ukrainian authorities to immediately stop military actions, cease fire, sit down at the negotiating table with Donbass representatives, and resolve all the accumulated problems exclusively via peaceful means.”
 
Moscow’s envoy Vitaly Churkin accused Kiev of waging war on its own people.
 
“Ukrainian forces in defiance of all norms of international humanitarian law and just moral principles are indiscriminately attacking cities, residential areas and infrastructures,” he explained.
 
His comments came on the same day Kiev forces attacked four buses of refugees seeking refuge in Russia. Its dirty war shows no mercy.
 
The New York Times is America’s lead source of media misinformation and propaganda.
 
On Thursday, it headlined “Ukraine Leader Says ‘Huge Loads of Arms’ Pour in From Russia,” saying:
 
“…Russian forces are on the move in Eastern Ukraine…” Its president, Petro Poroshenko, accused Russia “of an invasion to aid the separatists.”
 
“(H)is national security council ordered mandatory conscription to help counter what he called an ‘extremely difficult’ threat.”
 
Poroshenko lied claiming
 
“Columns of heavy artillery, huge loads of arms and regular Russian servicemen (invaded) Ukraine from Russia through the uncontrolled border area.”
 
“Mercenaries, along with regular servicemen, (are) trying to overrun positions held by the Ukrainian military.”
 
So-called NATO satellite images were cited as proof. Its web site claimed they show “Russian combat troops inside Ukraine.”
 
Comprehensive Crisis and Operations Management Centre director Brigadier General Nico Tak lied claiming:
 
“Over the past two weeks we have noted a significant escalation in both the level and sophistication of Russia’s military interference in Ukraine.”
 
“The satellite images released today provide additional evidence that Russian combat soldiers, equipped with sophisticated heavy weaponry, are operating inside Ukraine’s sovereign territory.”
 
Fact: No Russian invasion occurred.
 
Fact: Claims otherwise are fake.
 
Fact: MSM regurgitate official Big Lies.
 
Fact: Commercial satellite operator DigitalGlobe provided the satellite images.
 
Fact: Both sides use Russian weapons.
 
Fact: Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) Prime Minister Alexander Zakharchenko said around three to four thousand Russian volunteers are aiding self-defense forces.
 
Fact: Many are retired Russian servicemen, he said.
 
Fact: Others on active duty used leave time to help “us struggle for our freedom.”
 
Fact: Moscow didn’t send them.
 
Fact: Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Ukrainian monitoring team and Russia’s representative said no Russian forces are present on Ukraine’s border.
 
Fact: Claims of a Russian invasion are false, they said.
 
Russia’s Defense Ministry exposed a Forgotten Regiment (FR) Russian veterans organization hoax about Russian units involved in Southeast Ukraine fighting.
 
According to Ministry spokesman General Igor Konashenkov, FR claims have “no relation to reality.”
 
“We have studied the contents of this hoax, and are obliged to disappoint its overseas authors and their few sympathizers in Russia, who have joined forces to publish their ‘revelation…’ ”
 
The “combat ready” infantry, artillery, paratrooper and reconnaissance exist. They’re engaged in routine training exercises in different parts of Russia.
 
They’re not involved in Southeastern Ukraine conflict. Claims otherwise are spurious.
 
According to Moscow’s permanent EU representative Vladimir Chizhov:
 
NATO, Washington and EU states presented no evidence of Russian military involvement in Ukraine.
 
Misinformation substitutes for hard truths. Often it’s disseminated ahead of important EU meetings.
 
This time it precedes an August 30 Brussels summit. Expect more sanctions to follow. Expect Russia to respond in kind.
 
Washington Post editors are militantly anti-Russian. On August 28, they headlined “The West must make Mr. Putin pay for his aggression.”
 
They lied claiming Putin
 
“sen(t) Russian forces openly into Ukraine in the past 48 hours.” They called doing so “a watershed…”
 
“If Mr. Putin does not pay a high price for this naked, if still cynically denied, attack on his neighbor, the precedent could sow instability (from) the Baltic Sea…to the South China Sea…, they said.”
 
Despite no evidence whatever of Russian revanchist aims, they accused Putin of wanting control over Southeastern Ukraine.
 
“(T)he United States and its allies cannot afford to let Mr. Putin break the rules. It is time to hit Russia with the full brunt of financial sanctions” and much more, they said.
 
They want Ukraine provided with arms and intelligence. They want military related sales to Russia halted. They want NATO strengthened.
 
They ludicrously claimed nations worldwide “rely on US leadership and its commitment to the rule of law…”
 
No country more systematically violates it. None more egregiously. None poses a greater threat to humanity.
 
Don’t expect WaPo editors to explain. Or their Wall Street Journal counterparts. On August 28, they headlined “Putin Marches Ahead.”
 
The joined with other MSM scoundrels claiming Russia invaded Ukraine. In February, they accused Moscow of “grabbing Crimea.”
 
They ignored near Crimean unanimity to join Russia. They now accused Russian forces of “firing artillery at Ukrainian positions from both (their own) territory and inside Ukraine.”
 
They claim Putin’s strategy is “to open a land bridge between Russia and Crimea.” He wants its economy “knit more closely to Russia’s,” they said.
 
“(E)scalation…open(ed) up another front for the Ukrainian military as it tries to regain control over the east.”
 
“Kiev forces will now have to fight on a third front against Russian soldiers and armor.”
 
Journal editors want a “serious response to this serious challenge to Europe’s political order…” They barely stopped short of urging Obama to declare war.
 
The risk of direct US-led NATO confrontation grows. Doing so belligerently is madness.
 
It risks the unthinkable. It risks potential global war. Deescalating crisis conditions matters most.
 
Washington’s imperial agenda undermines it. The worst of all possible outcomes may follow.
 
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.
 
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
 
http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html
 
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
 
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
 
It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.
 
http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour

‘No Russian troops in Ukraine’: Moscow’s OSCE rep responds to Kiev’s claim

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.(RIA Novosti / Alexei Druzhinin)

Published time: August 28, 2014 10:27
Edited time: August 28, 2014 14:36

“I think that only among Russians is there a heightened feeling of sorrow and human misfortune, only they are able to travel to any part of the world, die, fight for the independence and freedom of people.”  ~ Prime Minister of the Donetsk People’s Republic Alexander Zakharchenko

The OSCE was told there was no Russian presence spotted across the Ukraine border, refuting Thursday’s claims that a full-scale invasion was underway. Both the Ukrainian monitoring team head and Russia’s representative have given a firm ‘no.’

The chorus of allegations about Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine had President Poroshenko calling for an emergency meeting of the country’s security and defense council, while Prime Minister Yatsenyuk on Thursday called for a Russian asset freeze.

No actual evidence has been given either by either foreign governments or the media, apart from claims that photographs exist that someone had “seen.”

“I have made a decision to cancel my working visit to the Republic of Turkey due to sharp aggravation of the situation in Donetsk region, particularly in Amvrosiivka and Starobeshevo, as Russian troops were brought into Ukraine,”Petro Poroshenko said in a statement on his website.

The Russian representative to the OSCE Andrey Kelin, meanwhile, has given a firm response to the allegations, saying that “we have said that no Russian involvement has been spotted, there are no soldiers or equipment present.”

“Accusations relating to convoys of armored personnel carriers have been heard during the past week and the week before that,” he said. “All of them were proven false back then, and are being proven false again now.”

Poroshenko, in the meantime, is going to call for a meeting of the UN Security Council. “The world must provide assessment of sharp aggravation of the situation in Ukraine,” he added.

The Ukrainian president added that on Thursday there will be a meeting of the Security and Defense Council of Ukraine to elaborate the plan for further action.

“The President must stay in Kyiv today,” he said.

Given the confusion arising out of the recent capture of Russian paratroopers and the subsequent videos with interviews released by the Ukrainian security services, tensions were easily stoked over Thursday’s supposed invasion. Now, the government is going to the US, EU and the G7 to ask for a freeze on Russian assets until their troops withdraw.

Russian soldiers captured in Ukraine say they ‘were lost’ in Kiev-released video

Members of Ukrainian volunteer battalion Dnipro stand as they patrol near the small southern Ukrainian city of Novoazovsk, Donetsk region, on August 27, 2014.(AFP Photo / Alexander Khudoteply)

Members of Ukrainian volunteer battalion Dnipro stand as they patrol near the small southern Ukrainian city of Novoazovsk, Donetsk region, on August 27, 2014.(AFP Photo / Alexander Khudoteply)

Meanwhile, the OSCE has announced that it’s calling an emergency meeting in Vienna – for the second time in August.

When the head of its Ukraine mission, Paul Picard, was asked if the monitoring team saw any evidence of Russia crossing the border with troops and tanks, the answer was “no.” He told journalists of round-the-clock surveillance by a team of 16 people. The team said “we are hearing shooting, but it’s difficult to tell just how far.”

This didn’t stop the Ukrainian government from alleging that the border town of Novoazovsk in the south-east has fallen under Russian control – a mix of troops and members of the eastern-Ukrainian uprising.

Ukraine’s own representative to the OSCE, Ihor Prokopchuk also said that “what we registered was a direct invasion of the Russian military into the eastern regions of Ukraine… an act of aggression.”

For his part, Russian envoy Kelin said“We only know that the mayor of Novoazovsk said that after 10 rounds of artillery were heard, the Ukrainian soldiers retreated from the city, and the self-defense forces entered,”.

He added that “the Ukrainian ambassador has offered no claims to counter this information.”

The Western media has been exploding with allegations, with everyone from the CNN to the New York Times going about the task in a very similar manner: quoting Ukrainian politicians’ views on Russia, as well as US figures, the ambassador to Ukraine and the State Department. One similarity could be spotted: they all centered on passionate statements – no evidence – and were followed by a big background into things that took place over the past week.

Whenever there was any mention of someone actually seeing Russian tanks, it seemed a mobile phone was never on hand to take a photograph.

Only Russian volunteers fighting with anti-Kiev forces – Donetsk Republic leader

15.siPMDonetsk

Prime Minister of the Donetsk People’s Republic Alexander Zakharchenko.(RIA Novosti / Mikhail Voskresenskiy)

 

About 3-4,000 Russian citizens joined anti-government fighters during Kiev crackdown in Ukraine’s east, says the leader of Donetsk independent republic, noting that self-defense fighters have never concealed this fact.

“They [Russian volunteers] are among us, people of Donbass [Region, eastern Ukraine] because we are blood brothers,” said the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Donetsk People’s Republic, Aleksandr Zakharchenko, in an interview to Russian media.

“There is no secret that among the volunteers from Russia there are many military men. They are fighting together with us because they understand that it’s their duty,” he added.

According to the Donetsk PM, some of the volunteers returned home to Russia, others stayed in eastern Ukraine.

“Unfortunately, some of [the Russian volunteers] were killed,” said Zakharchenko.

He explained why he thinks Russian volunteers are joining self-defense forces in eastern Ukraine.

“I think that only among Russians is there a heightened feeling of sorrow and human misfortune, only they are able to travel to any part of the world, die, fight for the independence and freedom of people.”

Men near the destroyed checkpoint "Dolzhansky" in Lugansk region.(RIA Novosti / Mikhail Voskresenskiy)

Men near the destroyed checkpoint “Dolzhansky” in Lugansk region.(RIA Novosti / Mikhail Voskresenskiy)

He added that Russian volunteers prefer “to spend their summer holidays not at the seaside, but among their brothers who are fighting for the freedom of Donbass [Region, eastern Ukraine].”

Zakharchenko said that Kiev authorities and Western countries are repeatedly talking about a Russian ‘military invasion’ to justify the mass defeats of the Ukrainian army in the country’s east.

Since Kiev launched its ‘anti-terrorist’ operation against eastern Ukrainian regions in April, Ukraine has faced a violent internal conflict and humanitarian catastrophe.

United Nations data released Tuesday, over 2,249 people have so far been killed and over 6,033 wounded in the fighting in eastern Ukraine. The number of internally-displaced Ukrainians has reached 190,000, with another 207,000 finding refuge in Russia, the UN said.

 Over 60 Ukrainian troops cross into Russia seeking refuge

A group of 62 Ukrainian troops have crossed into Russia’s Rostov Region seeking shelter to save their lives amid an intensified counteroffensive recently launched by anti-Kiev militia in southeastern Ukraine.

“Today, 62 servicemen of the Ukrainian Armed Forces turned to Russian border guards asking to let them into the Russian territory near Russia’s settlement of Shramko, Matveyevo-Kurgansky district, with the aim to save their lives,” the spokesman for the FSB’s border guard office in the Rostov Region, Nikolay Sinitsyn, told Itar-Tass news agency on Wednesday.

They were allowed to cross and provided with a transit corridor on the principles of humanism, but only after they left their weapons on the Ukrainian side of the border, Sinitsyn added.

This case became the latest in a series of similar incidents where a total of over 500 Ukrainian troops crossed into Russia since July seeking refuge and medical help.

Earlier this week, Ukraine released videos showing alleged Russian paratroopers captured on Ukrainian territory. Russian Defense Ministry sources were saying that they probably crossed the border by mistake during a routine patrol of an area which wasn’t manned. President Putin, when asked about the issue said he hoped it won’t be blown out of proportion, since Ukrainian troops regularly cross into Russian territory, sometimes in armored vehicles and were never charged with anything and always allowed to return to Ukraine freely.

Kiev’s renewed accusations of Russian military’s alleged operations on Ukrainian territory are “nothing new,” says Kremlin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov, adding that Russia regularly refutes such reports. Meanwhile Kiev says it has launched a preliminary investigation into the detained men on suspicion of “aiding terrorist groups.”

ukranian-2

This combination of handout pictures released by Ukrainian security service (SBU) press service on August 26, 2014 purportedly shows Russian paratroopers captured by Ukrainian forces near the village of Dzerkalne, Donetsk region (AFP Photo / SBU Press-Service / Str)

Ukraine’s own troops in the meantime are also facing prosecution, with General Prosecutor’s office announcing on Wednesday that 1,083 criminal proceeding had been launched since the beginning of the so-called anti-terrorist operation, with people being charged for “disobedience, unauthorized abandonment of a military unit or place of service, desertion, evasion of military service in another way, and so on.”

Anti-Kiev militia in the meantime announced that almost 90 Ukrainian troops laid down their arms and surrendered on Wednesday alone, following at least 129 the day before, Ria reports.

On Sunday, the main headquarters of the Donetsk People’s Republic announced that it had launched a counteroffensive against Kiev’s “punitive forces” in the region, blocking and surrounding many of the military and paramilitary units.

The military equipment captured from local army depots and those forces surrendering en masse has allowed militia to form 2 tank battalions, 3 multiple launcher rocket system batteries, 2 self-propelled howitzer batteries, 3 cannon battalions of various calibers and 8 mortar batteries, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Donetsk People’s Republic Aleksander Zakharchenko told the press at the time.