Changing shoes on the fly
In the first months after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Russian state channels explained that there was nothing to worry about – the coronavirus, they say, is no worse than the flu. Margarita Simonyan also walked in step with the rest, claiming that COVID is not so terrible, and “excessive panic about the coronavirus around the world will definitely cause more damage to humanity and we will lose more people than because of the virus itself.” After a while, Russia came out on top in the world in mortality from coronavirus, but the skepticism sown by propaganda took root, and by the end of 2020, when vaccination appeared in Russia, the concept changed, propaganda had to convince Russians that the virus was dangerous and needed to be vaccinated. Margarita Simonyan hastened to change her shoes along with the others, she took root from one of the first and has been actively promoting vaccination for a year now. So, recently she is in her Telegram channel she wrote an appeal to everyone who does not want to be vaccinated, and asked those who do not have antibodies, who knowingly not vaccinated, not to come to her home, to work and not to approach her on the street. “I don’t know you. If not for you, we would have forgotten about the covid. Suffocate yourself on mechanical ventilation, crawl with saturation seventy along the corridors of crowded hospitals – this is good news. “
The Russian-language website RT has the same agenda. In June, for example, came out material under the heading “It’s okay to be vaccinated.” The author of the article, the former assistant of Alexei Venediktov, and now a prominent propagandist Lesya Ryabtseva, writes: “It is absolutely normal to be vaccinated, because it gives not only antibodies and safety of movement without the risk of becoming infected in a severe form, but also the hope that soon we will heal normally, well , without anxiety and fear of imminent restrictions, without fear of loss. “
Guests and columnists of the Russian RT service smash the anti-vaccine. So, doctor Maria Marusina, co-author of the work “Refusal to vaccinate – a new plague of the XXI century” on the air of RT told how the anti-vaccination movement arose in world and Russian history and explained that the media should talk everywhere about the effectiveness of vaccination, name specific numbers and show the real statistics.
The Russian-language Telegram channel RT also often appears posts, which say that wearing masks is a necessary measure in the fight against coronavirus, and rewrites of news from other publications often appear on the Russian-language website under the headings “The doctor noted the need for children to wear masks in public places,” “Therapist Panov recalled the importance of preventing COVID-19 “,” Immunologist Kryuchkov gave advice on the use of a reusable mask. “
What is good for a Russian is death for a German
While the need for vaccination is being explained to the Russians, a stream of misinformation about the dangers of vaccination is directed at Western audiences. Germany especially got it. So, in September, on the website of the German version of RT, material was released under the heading Lymphocytes Spin Out of Control – Pathologists Investigate Deaths Following COVID-19 Vaccination“. The material says that two pathologists, “Professor” Arne Burkhard and “Professor” Walter Lang, provided the results of some studies on dozens of deaths allegedly related to vaccination against COVID. Also, the “professors” showed photographs, which allegedly showed traces of some foreign bodies in vaccines. In fact, Burkhard and Lang have not worked as pathologists for several years, did not open the bodies themselves and did not bother to explain where their data came from, and both German associations of pathologists said that this “study” was not scientific. The “foreign bodies” in the photos they presented turned out to be ordinary dust. Moreover, as it turned out, both “professors are real scammers, they are members of the Association” Medicines and Scientists for Health, Freedom and Democracy “(MWGFD), which sold certificates supposedly exempting their owners from wearing masks.
This is far from the only example of RT disinformation about COVID targeted at a German audience. So, in May 2021, RT published article under the heading “Pharmacist does not want to be vaccinated against the corona:” I do not want to change my DNA. “ RT said that the managing director of the largest Greek pharmaceutical company Vianex Dimitris Giannakopoulos does not want to be vaccinated against COVID: “I have not been vaccinated and will not be vaccinated. Not because I’m afraid of the side effects, but because I don’t want my DNA to be replaced. ” At the same time, the TV channel did not make any explanations that changing DNA by means of inoculation is physically impossible.
And in August, RT published interview with the “famous Swiss immunologist” Beda Stadler, who said that the coronavirus cannot flow asymptomatically, and therefore PCR tests are not needed, normal immunity helps from COVID-19, because COVID is a common seasonal cold disease. Stadler actually worked as an immunologist before, but all these statements are proven to be false, and Stadler does not cite any published studies to support his words.
There are other examples as well. Say, at the very beginning of the pandemic, at the end of March 2020, RT DE wrotethat Germany refused to help China, although in fact by the time the article was published, she had already received masks and tests from the PRC. In November 2020, the RT DE website wrote that due to the lockdown mortality increased by 45%. But for the material they used study, carried out in only one region, and the assumptions of its authors were presented as final conclusions common to the whole country. The same article reported that the number of lonely people found dead at home allegedly doubled (nothing of the kind happened).
And in July 2021 RT DE reported, that a new secret Japanese showed that nanoparticles accumulated in the bodies of experimental animals from Pfizer. In fact, the study referred to by RT is not new, but old, not secret, but published in open sources, and there is no evidence of harm from the Pfizer-Biotech vaccine in it No.
Another material due to which the German resources of Russia Today were blocked is interview with epidemiologist Friedrich Pürner under the heading “Train the people you vaccinate.” Interestingly, Purner was fired from his post as head of the health department of one of the districts of Bavaria for criticizing the state government in the fight against coronavirus.
Finally, in September 2021, the RT DE website circulated fake conspiracy theorist Steve Kirsch (dubbed “the leading coronavirus researcher” by the TV channel): “The Pfizer vaccine kills more people than it saves.” He refers to existing research, but completely distorts its results.
A heavy stream of misinformation about the coronavirus forced YouTube to block two RT-owned channels – RT DE and Der Fehlende Part, which infuriated Margarita Simonyan. Which, however, was ashamed to explain why all these materials about the dangers of vaccines existed only on the German version of the site, because if all this is true, shouldn’t the Russian population be urgently warned about this?
RT in English and French: the mouthpiece for anti-Axis
The English-language version of RT is somewhat inferior to the German one in terms of the concentration of outright fakes, but it also could not do without them. You can remember, for example, the October material “Now scientists have confirmed that natural immunity is more effective than grafted immunity, why can’t I get my freedom back?” The article was written by Rachel Marsden, columnist and host of the French-language program, which is broadcast on Sputnik France. In fact, scientists have not confirmed anything like this, the journalist refers to the only study from Puerto Rico, which, rather, runs counter to the scientific consensus, according to which easily recovering from illness is not protected from recurrence and severe illness.
RT in English-language media has become the main platform for anti-vaccines. Some Jani Allan in column on RT indignant: “Get vaccinated or suffer in a lockdown at gunpoint: the authorities will not calm down until they force 70% of the adult population to inject. It is a fascist coercion that violates the prohibition on medical experimentation and fundamental human rights, including informed consent. ”
A separate series of RT publications is directed against wearing masks: in May 2021 RT published an article titled “New CDC Rules Create a Caste System Dividing People Into Clean and Unclean,” and in July titled “Masks: Keep the Long Arms of the Law Out of My Face.”
The French version of the RT website was equally active in promoting the anti-vaccination agenda. One of RT’s favorite tricks is to take a single study, take it out of context, and present it as the opinion of all scientists. So, RT released in French, an article stating that the number of vaccinated does not affect the spread of the coronavirus. In fact, we are talking about one single publication in the European Journal of Epidemiology, where the authors simply compared the number of new cases in the last 7 days with the proportion of vaccinated and did not find a clear correlation across countries. But, firstly, RT did not say a word that mortality (as well as the number of hospitalizations) at the same time differs fundamentally – for example, with a comparable number of new cases in Russia and Britain, the mortality rate among the British is 100-150 people per day, and in Russia (only according to official statistics) more than a thousand. Secondly, the publication did not claim serious scientific conclusions, its authors simply compared the number of new cases by country in the last week using the Worldometers website, while differences within countries were not taken into account in any way. Meanwhile, other studies have shown that, for example, in the USA the number of new cases in vaccinated and unvaccinated states differs by three times, and even across the state of New York discovered correlation between the number of vaccinated and new cases. It is also necessary to take into account demography: in prosperous countries, the increase in new cases is now mainly at the expense of children and adolescents – precisely because they are not vaccinated. For clarity, here is a simple graph showing the cumulative (accumulated) number of confirmed coronavirus infections in North Carolina among those vaccinated with mRNA vaccines (blue line) and unvaccinated (red):