Spilnota Detector Media
Detector Media collects and documents real-time chronicles of the Kremlin disinformation about the Russian invasion. Ukraine for decades has been suffering from Kremlin disinformation. Here we document all narratives, messages, and tactics, which Russia is using from February 17th, 2022. Reminder: the increasing of shelling and fighting by militants happened on the 17th of February 2022 on the territory of Ukraine. Russian propaganda blames Ukraine for these actions.

On 02 December, on the 646th day of the full-scale war, our editorial office recorded:

Русскій фейк, іді на***!

Message The main goal of the so-called SVO is supposedly not to seize Ukraine, but to ensure the security of Russia

This information is promoted by Spiridon Kilinkarov, a former Ukrainian politician, a traitor to Ukraine. He is hiding in Russia and speaking on Kremlin propaganda channels. In his opinion, Russia’s aggression is justified because it guarantees the country’s security. Kilinkarov argues that we are not talking exclusively about new territories for Russia, but about the exhaustive implementation of the assigned tasks for the Russian army.

The experts from the Center for Countering Disinformation examined this case. It turns out that by spreading such a message, the traitor makes Russia a victim of circumstances. They say that Russia must defend itself from NATO and the collective West, and therefore is forced to resort to armed confrontation on neutral territory, in Ukraine, playing ahead. A similar version of the reason for the full-scale invasion was voiced by the self-proclaimed President of Belarus Oleksandr Lukashenko: Russia launched a “preventive strike” because Ukraine was allegedly planning an attack on Belarus.

Fake In October 2023, Russia allegedly destroyed 37 Ukrainian Air Force aircraft

Pro-Kremlin resources are disseminating the words of Russian Defense Minister Serhii  Shoihu, who stated that in October the Russian army allegedly managed to destroy 37 Ukrainian combat aircraft. This is almost 2 times more than the promised number of F-16s for Kyiv. Despite the supply of new types of “NATO” weapons, Ukraine seems to continue to lose. However, this is a fake.

The specialists from the Vox Ukraine team analyzed this case. They found that OSINT analysts did not record large losses of the Ukrainian Air Force in October 2023. The Dutch open-source reconnaissance site Oryx found only one destroyed Su-25 during this period. In addition, according to the agreements of the Ukrainian authorities and partner states, Ukraine should receive more than 18 F-16 aircraft - propagandists are manipulating information. On August 21, 2023, Volodymyr Zelenskyi announced that Ukraine would receive 42 aircraft from the Netherlands and 19 from Denmark. Later, a clarification appeared: the Netherlands will transfer some of the mentioned 42 aircraft to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, and some will be left for pilot training. On August 24, Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stør also announced the transfer of F-16 aircraft to Ukraine. In the end, Belgium will also join the supply of equipment of this type from 2025. It should be noted that Norway and Belgium still did not specify the number of aircraft that they are ready to transfer.

Russian propaganda exaggerates the achievements of the Russian army, trying to spread another “victorious” story from the front line among ordinary Russians. That is, propagandists engage in eye-catching activities and publish fake information from the combat zone. After all, we previously published information that Shoihu “knocked down”  a bunch of planes and ATACMS in five days.

Fake The Foundation of the First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska is allegedly linked to child trafficking

Pro-Russian resources claim that Olena Zelenska’s foundation is allegedly involved in various child trafficking schemes. They say that the foundation of the first lady of Ukraine, under the pretext of saving children, allegedly systematically sent orphans into the hands of pedophiles in different European countries - France, Great Britain, Germany. However, this is a fake.

The fact-checkers from the StopFake project analyzed this case. They investigated that one of the sources of disinformation picked up by the Russian media is the online publication The Intel Drop, which has already repeatedly disseminated fake news. In addition, the website of the mentioned online resource was created only in September 2022, presumably by Russian intelligence services to make the propaganda more credible. Another source of misinformation was the online newspaper The DC Weekly, which publishes a lot of conspiracy theories. The author of the article about the Zelenska Foundation on this resource is allegedly journalist Jessica Devlin. However, no information at all could be found about this author. Moreover, using a reverse Google image search, it was discovered that the photo purportedly of Jessica Devlin was an image of Canadian writer Judy Batalion.

Many first ladies around the world are involved in the protection of children, orphans, their education and healthcare. Olena Zelenska is no exception. Children are a vulnerable category of the population that needs special protection, especially in conditions of armed confrontation. The Kremlin aims to discredit Olena Zelenska, as well as Volodymyr Zelenskyi, because these people have influence in Ukraine. To blow up the people's trust in the spouses means to deal a powerful blow from within the country. We also analyzed previous attempts to discredit Olena Zelenska as disinformation, that allegedly the Russians found the Russian passport of the first lady of Ukraine in Crimea or Olena Zelenska spends tens of thousands of euros on accessories.

Manipulation In Ukraine, electricity tariffs for the population are supposed to be increased from January 1, 2024

Propagandists are disseminating information that from January 1, 2024, electricity tariffs for the population will increase in Ukraine. Anonymous telegram channels write about this and refer to a recent interview with Kostiantyn Ushchapovskyi, head of the National Commission for State Regulation in the Field of Energy and Utilities. However, this is manipulation.

Colleagues from the Center for Strategic Communications and Security decided to check the information. They found out that Ushchapovskyi did not make such a statement. The Ministry of Energy also reported that at present there are no plans to increase tariffs for the population. The words of the head of the National Commission for State Regulation in the Field of Energy and Utilities were taken out of context: in fact, he said that “until the successful completion of the autumn-winter season there can be no talk of raising tariffs”. The Russians manipulated information to nourish their narrative about the “Kyiv regime”, whose representatives do not take into account the Ukrainian people, but think only about themselves and are ready to torment the population with cold and darkness.

This case of disinformation, like other similar ones - about a power outage or the unpreparedness of the Ukrainian energy system for winter, is intended to demoralize Ukrainian society and “scold it with the authorities”. By the way, we previously refuted information that supposedly in November there could be a blackout in Ukraine even without shelling.

Fake Valerii Zaluzhnyi allegedly gave the order to prepare for defense between Mykolaiv and Odesa

Pro-Kremlin resources disseminated information that the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valerii Zaluzhnyi allegedly gave the order to begin preparations to repel enemy attacks between Mykolaiv and Odesa. He is allegedly confident that Russia is preparing a new offensive, which could potentially lead to the loss of Ukrainian territories. It's fake.

This case was processed by specialists from the BezBrekhni (No Lies) project. They found out that the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces did not publish such information and could not do so, since such topics are secret. Also, the propagandists did not cite a single source, which indicates that the “news” was made up.

Russian propaganda nourishes the narrative that there is a conflict between Zaluzhnyi  and Zelenskyi, the military and political leadership, but in fact this assumption has never been confirmed. By spreading this type of disinformation, propagandists are trying to sow discord in Ukrainian society and demoralize it. Previously, we refuted the information that Valerii Zaluzhnyi was supposedly being dismissed.

Orest Slyvenko, Artur Koldomasov, Pavlo Rud, Oleksandra Kotenko, Oleksandr Siedin, Kostiantyn Zadyraka, and Oleksiy Pivtorak are collaborating on this chronicle. Lesia Bidochko serves as the project coordinator, while Ksenia Ilyuk is the author of the project.