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Russian Media Spreading Disinformation About Alleged US Bioweapons As Troops Mass Near Ukraine

February 13th, 2022 15:55

The Bul­letin of the Atom­ic Sci­en­tists, a US-based non­prof­it orga­ni­za­tion, is report­ing that Russ­ian media is claim­ing the Unit­ed States is devel­op­ing bio­log­i­cal weapons in a net­work of labs in Ukraine. Accord­ing to the report:::

Feb­ru­ary 8, 2022 Tim Kir­by is a host on RT, the Russ­ian state-owned media net­work. But that’s just one of the jobs the Ohio native says he’s had in Rus­sia. Accord­ing to his LinkedIn pro­file, he’s also a tight-end on the semi-pro­fes­sion­al Moscow Spar­tans foot­ball team, a pro­lif­ic YouTu­ber, and a for­mer dri­ve-time radio host (or, as he puts it, the “#2 micro­phone” on a morn­ing radio show called Sergey Stillavin and His Friends). On his YouTube chan­nel, he recent­ly divulged what would be a shock­ing rev­e­la­tion, if it were true: The Unit­ed States is devel­op­ing bio­log­i­cal weapons in a net­work of labs right next door to Rus­sia in Ukraine.  “Some­one I’ve known for a few years has come for­ward,” Kir­by told the almost 60,000 view­ers who’ve watched the video so far, “to put togeth­er a pic­ture of a net­work of bioweapons lab­o­ra­to­ries in Ukraine, that is very large and very Wash­ing­ton-sup­port­ed that could be quite dan­ger­ous for us all.”  Far from rep­re­sent­ing sim­ply his own per­son­al mus­ings, Kirby’s unsub­stan­ti­at­ed alle­ga­tions are being echoed at the high­est lev­els of the Russ­ian gov­ern­ment. State media are repeat­ing sim­i­lar claims. The Kremlin’s alleged proxy media out­lets are writ­ing about them, and after Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin and Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping met recent­ly, their two coun­tries issued a joint state­ment decry­ing US bioweapons activities.

Read the full report here.

The report notes that Rus­sia and the Sovi­et Union before it have a long his­to­ry of bioweapons-relat­ed dis­in­for­ma­tion. Accord­ing to a recent study, the out­break of the Covid-19 pan­dem­ic in Chi­na in Jan­u­ary 2020 prompt­ed a  great­ly expand­ed Russ­ian-gov­ern­ment bioweapons-relat­ed dis­in­for­ma­tion effort. Accord­ing to the paper’s extract:

Octo­ber 21, 2021 From 1949 until 1988, the Sovi­et Union con­duct­ed a near­ly con­tin­u­ous cam­paign of false alle­ga­tions of bio­log­i­cal-weapon (BW) use by the Unit­ed States. In 1995, senior Russ­ian mil­i­tary offi­cials revived this pat­tern of false alle­ga­tions, which con­tin­ues to the present day. Russ­ian offi­cials ampli­fied the cam­paign after the US gov­ern­ment fund­ed the trans­for­ma­tion of for­mer Sovi­et BW facil­i­ties in the Com­mon­wealth of Inde­pen­dent States under the Nunn–Lugar pro­gram. The out­break of the COVID-19 pan­dem­ic in Chi­na in Jan­u­ary 2020 prompt­ed a very great­ly expand­ed Russ­ian-gov­ern­ment BW-relat­ed dis­in­for­ma­tion effort. This paper aims to present a rea­son­ably com­pre­hen­sive account of these activ­i­ties and to assess their sig­nif­i­cance. The Russ­ian gov­ern­ment under Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin has demon­strat­ed open dis­dain for both the Bio­log­i­cal and Tox­in Weapons Con­ven­tion and the Chem­i­cal Weapons Convention.

Read the full paper here.