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Wed Mar 5, 2014, 06:46 PM

President Putin's Fiction: 10 False Claims about Ukraine (US State Department)

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2014/03/222988.htm#.Uxehigidbh0.twitter

Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
March 5, 2014


As Russia spins a false narrative to justify its illegal actions in Ukraine, the world has not seen such startling Russian fiction since Dostoyevsky wrote, “The formula ‘two plus two equals five’ is not without its attractions.”

Below are 10 of President Vladimir Putin’s recent claims justifying Russian aggression in the Ukraine, followed by the facts that his assertions ignore or distort.

1. Mr. Putin says: Russian forces in Crimea are only acting to protect Russian military assets. It is “citizens’ defense groups,” not Russian forces, who have seized infrastructure and military facilities in Crimea.

The Facts: Strong evidence suggests that members of Russian security services are at the heart of the highly organized anti-Ukraine forces in Crimea. While these units wear uniforms without insignia, they drive vehicles with Russian military license plates and freely identify themselves as Russian security forces when asked by the international media and the Ukrainian military. Moreover, these individuals are armed with weapons not generally available to civilians.

2. Mr. Putin says: Russia’s actions fall within the scope of the 1997 Friendship Treaty between Ukraine and the Russian Federation.

The Facts: The 1997 agreement requires Russia to respect Ukraine’s territorial integrity. Russia’s military actions in Ukraine, which have given them operational control of Crimea, are in clear violation of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.

3. Mr. Putin says: The opposition failed to implement the February 21 agreement with former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

The Facts: The February 21 agreement laid out a plan in which the Rada, or Parliament, would pass a bill to return Ukraine to its 2004 Constitution, thus returning the country to a constitutional system centered around its parliament. Under the terms of the agreement, Yanukovych was to sign the enacting legislation within 24 hours and bring the crisis to a peaceful conclusion. Yanukovych refused to keep his end of the bargain. Instead, he packed up his home and fled, leaving behind evidence of wide-scale corruption.

4. Mr. Putin says: Ukraine’s government is illegitimate. Yanukovych is still the legitimate leader of Ukraine.

The Facts: On March 4, President Putin himself acknowledged the reality that Yanukovych “has no political future.” After Yanukovych fled Ukraine, even his own Party of Regions turned against him, voting to confirm his withdrawal from office and to support the new government. Ukraine’s new government was approved by the democratically elected Ukrainian Parliament, with 371 votes – more than an 82% majority. The interim government of Ukraine is a government of the people, which will shepherd the country toward democratic elections on May 25th – elections that will allow all Ukrainians to have a voice in the future of their country.

5. Mr. Putin says: There is a humanitarian crisis and hundreds of thousands are fleeing Ukraine to Russia and seeking asylum.

The Facts: To date, there is absolutely no evidence of a humanitarian crisis. Nor is there evidence of a flood of asylum-seekers fleeing Ukraine for Russia. International organizations on the ground have investigated by talking with Ukrainian border guards, who also refuted these claims. Independent journalists observing the border have also reported no such flood of refugees.

6. Mr. Putin says: Ethnic Russians are under threat.

The Facts: Outside of Russian press and Russian state television, there are no credible reports of any ethnic Russians being under threat. The new Ukrainian government placed a priority on peace and reconciliation from the outset. President Oleksandr Turchynov refused to sign legislation limiting the use of the Russian language at regional level. Ethnic Russians and Russian speakers have filed petitions attesting that their communities have not experienced threats. Furthermore, since the new government was established, calm has returned to Kyiv. There has been no surge in crime, no looting, and no retribution against political opponents.

7. Mr. Putin says: Russian bases are under threat.

The Facts: Russian military facilities were and remain secure, and the new Ukrainian government has pledged to abide by all existing international agreements, including those covering Russian bases. It is Ukrainian bases in Crimea that are under threat from Russian military action.

8. Mr. Putin says: There have been mass attacks on churches and synagogues in southern and eastern Ukraine.

The Facts: Religious leaders in the country and international religious freedom advocates active in Ukraine have said there have been no incidents of attacks on churches. All of Ukraine’s church leaders, including representatives of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate, have expressed support for the new political leadership, calling for national unity and a period of healing. Jewish groups in southern and eastern Ukraine report that they have not seen an increase in anti-Semitic incidents.

9. Mr. Putin says: Kyiv is trying to destabilize Crimea.

The Facts: Ukraine’s interim government has acted with restraint and sought dialogue. Russian troops, on the other hand, have moved beyond their bases to seize political objectives and infrastructure in Crimea. The government in Kyiv immediately sent the former Chief of Defense to defuse the situation. Petro Poroshenko, the latest government emissary to pursue dialogue in Crimea, was prevented from entering the Crimean Rada.

10. Mr. Putin says: The Rada is under the influence of extremists or terrorists.

The Facts: The Rada is the most representative institution in Ukraine. Recent legislation has passed with large majorities, including from representatives of eastern Ukraine. Far-right wing ultranationalist groups, some of which were involved in open clashes with security forces during the EuroMaidan protests, are not represented in the Rada. There is no indication that the Ukrainian government would pursue discriminatory policies; on the contrary, they have publicly stated exactly the opposite.

*government document so I'm assuming no length restrictions*

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply President Putin's Fiction: 10 False Claims about Ukraine (US State Department) (Original post)
steve2470 Mar 2014 OP
TwilightGardener Mar 2014 #1
KoKo Mar 2014 #2
TwilightGardener Mar 2014 #3
ProSense Mar 2014 #4
sheshe2 Mar 2014 #12
KoKo Mar 2014 #5
ProSense Mar 2014 #6
TwilightGardener Mar 2014 #7
ProSense Mar 2014 #21
TwilightGardener Mar 2014 #23
Cha Mar 2014 #8
steve2470 Mar 2014 #9
sheshe2 Mar 2014 #14
Cha Mar 2014 #15
ProSense Mar 2014 #10
Cha Mar 2014 #11
sheshe2 Mar 2014 #13
NM_Birder Mar 2014 #16
NM_Birder Mar 2014 #17
steve2470 Mar 2014 #18
NM_Birder Mar 2014 #19
reformist2 Mar 2014 #20
Pretzel_Warrior Mar 2014 #22
ProSense Mar 2014 #24

Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 06:53 PM

1. Unbelievable, the amount and reach of Russian propaganda.

Glad the State Dept. is addressing it--I guess you have to now, in the internet age.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #1)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 07:45 PM

2. But...where is the Arbiter who can verify either side?

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Response to KoKo (Reply #2)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 07:58 PM

3. There's no "side", there's only facts.

The world watched the whole Ukraine thing unfold, it was all reported on as it happened, by western media--which, flawed as it is, is more factual than misinformation machines like the media and government of Russia, China, etc. I think newspapers like the NYT, WaPo, WSJ, LA Times, the Guardian, and agencies like NPR, CNN, NBC, etc. deal mostly in fact--so if the news comes from them, it's probably fairly accurate, and if it comes from Russia Today and various blogs, I tend to be a little skeptical. You must ask yourself, Who does this information serve?--and go from there.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 08:10 PM

4. If it's not

The world watched the whole Ukraine thing unfold, it was all reported on as it happened, by western media--which, flawed as it is, is more factual than misinformation machines like the media and government of Russia, China, etc. I think newspapers like the NYT, WaPo, WSJ, LA Times, the Guardian, and agencies like NPR, CNN, NBC, etc. deal mostly in fact--so if the news comes from them, it's probably fairly accurate, and if it comes from Russia Today and various blogs, I tend to be a little skeptical. You must ask yourself, Who does this information serve?--and go from there.

...from RT it's suspect. It's fascinating to watch people twisting themselves into pretzels to distract from Putin's actions.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #4)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:23 PM

12. And

agencies like NPR, CNN, NBC, etc. deal mostly in fact--so if the news comes from them, it's probably fairly accurate


Has CNN called the election for Barack Obama? NPR has moved to the right. As for NBC, don't know. I watch little to no TV.

It's probably fairly accurate
Oh my gawd.

What is with the GOP cheerleaders for Putin. Have they all lost their ever loving minds! Wait, don't bother to answer that. They have because Our President is Black!

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 08:32 PM

5. I see...you are a reader of the very News that we invaded Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya

instigated in Syria and are in AFRICOM in Sudan and other parts of South Africa?

You believe a MEDIA that LIED us over WMD into WAR? You trust these people even knowning it's Five Major Corporations who control US Media and that Great Britain had Ruppert Murdoch's Empire marching along with Blair into Iraq? And Cameron who is Clone of Blair?

Why do you feel that a Media who helped lie it's Democratic Government into war and then supported Wall Street and International Bankers centered in NYC and London as they drove US and Western Economies into Bankruptcy and penalized their own people into Austerity Programs while the Bankers and Oligarchs got off with "small fines" for Criminality and the PEOPLE suffered and still are.

You support Imperial Wars? Oil and Gas Interests getting off for horrible devastation by lack of oversight and Bankster Criminals deciding who of us to Screw Next?

Do you really read News or do you just turn on CNN/Fox and take NYT, WaPo as your Daily Read for Truth after what we've seen in the past Decades?

Do you not realize that the World is NOT USA and Great Britain, alone?

I'm being harsh on you...but, why would you trust any news source here in USA without reading Other sources from the rest of the world to have a perspective to reference for your opinion?

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Response to KoKo (Reply #5)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 08:34 PM

6. "You support Imperial Wars?"

Aren't people making excuses for Putin's invasion?

I mean, which is it: Either Bush and Putin are wrong...or they're both right?



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Response to KoKo (Reply #5)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 09:20 PM

7. US news is actually pretty good for facts. It's the analysis and manipulation

of facts that need a little skepticism, but I have a brain. The rest of your post--eh. Not untruthful, but I'm not really a true follower of that whole agenda. I don't foam at the mouth when I hear "imperial wars" or "banksters".

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #7)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 11:16 PM

21. The same people who

were using dubious sources, a lot of them RW hacks or conspiracy sites, to absolve Assad are now doing the same thing with Putin.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #21)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 11:32 PM

23. Agreed on that.

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Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 09:48 PM

8. And, crickets around here.. must'n expose Putin.

"We can't say anything since bush attacked Iraq". Bullshit.. not in my name he didn't.

thanks steve.

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Response to Cha (Reply #8)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 09:57 PM

9. my pleasure Cha ! nt

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Response to Cha (Reply #8)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:25 PM

14. Not in my name either, Cha!

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Response to sheshe2 (Reply #14)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:27 PM

15. Thanks, she!

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Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:07 PM

10. Kick! n/t

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Response to ProSense (Reply #10)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:11 PM

11. Thanks!

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Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:25 PM

13. Kick and Fricking Rec!

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Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:28 PM

16. Fact #1

 

starts out "strong evidence suggests"..............

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Response to NM_Birder (Reply #16)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:33 PM

17. The rest of the "fact sheet" is based on opinion,

 

I know, nobody else will notice.

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Response to NM_Birder (Reply #16)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:33 PM

18. I think the State Dept. was being cautious there

Everything I've read has pointed to the Russians being the force behind all the events in Crimea. Some soldiers have admitted to being Russian troops.

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Response to steve2470 (Reply #18)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:52 PM

19. I agree with everything you just said, exactly as you said it.

 


But the 'fact" sheet is being slippery when it labels... strong evidence, .....an easily followed trail of evidence, or even .....the widely believed conclusion based on the evidence....as "fact".

it's bad form, the actual truth is enough, .. Everything said in the document resonates the exact message it was meant to convey. The "FACT": style of information organization isn't my thing when it requires explanation right out the gates.

It leaves me with a strong feeling of agreement, but I couldn't ever reference this in a discussion.

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Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 10:54 PM

20. As long as Putin/Russia limit themselves to the Crimea, that's fine with me.

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Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 11:18 PM

22. Why is everyone behaving like ostriches? Face facts. You've been hoodwinked by Putin.

 

Thank you for posting this.

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Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Thu Mar 6, 2014, 12:33 PM

24. Kick! n/t

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