The most "viral" stories right now are all laughably false. And they are being used, of course, to paint Russia as the "bad" guy and Ukraine as the "good" guy.
Many congressmen, media outlets and even "conservative" news and information outlets have been peddling these fake news stories, which aim to shape a false narrative in order to control public opinion concerning the conflict.
"The viral, fake stories come amidst social media platforms rolling out robust 'fact-checking' operations, often used to swiftly censor stories counter to establishment narratives or critical of the Democratic Party," explains The National Pulse's Natalie Winters.
"These programs, however, have routinely failed to flag the following stories as false with the same tenacity."
One of the fake stories that you may have seen is the "Snake Island Martyrs" fabrication. This one alleges that 13 Ukrainian border guards stationed on Snake Island, located in the Black Sea, were killed at the onset of the Russian invasion.
Audio recordings allegedly capturing their final moments seemed to suggest that a Russian warship issued the following demand:
"I ask you to lay down your arms and surrender to avoid bloodshed and unnecessary deaths. Otherwise, you will be bombed."
The 13 Ukrainian soldiers supposedly responded with:
"Russian warship: go f*** yourself."
The rest of the fake news story claimed that these 13 Ukrainian soldiers are now dead "heroically" because of Vladimir Putin. The Ukrainian Navy, however, later fessed up that these guards had actually just been "taken captive by Russian occupiers" and are all still alive.
Then we have the "Ghost of Kiev" manufactured story, which claimed that a Ukrainian fighter pilot showed up in a jet to shoot down multiple Russian fighter jets, resulting in several casualties.
Big Tech social media platforms quickly blew up with content claiming that the Ghost of Kiev fighter pilot is a "hero," though it was later revealed that the footage actually came from a video game.
"The video was created with the 2008 game 'Digital Combat Simulator' and was first shared via YouTube, where the original poster acknowledged the footage was from a simulator," Winters explains.
A photo you may have seen circulating of two young children standing before a Ukrainian tank is also fake (see below). Despite garnering tens of thousands of "likes" on Twitter, the image has absolutely nothing to do with the current conflict.
"In reality, the dramatic image actually traces its roots over half of a decade back to Ukraine in 2016 and has appeared in several news stories since then," Winters reveals, explaining that pro-war congressman Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) was caught tweeting the false image.
Another hilariously fake pro-Ukraine piece of propaganda that has been spreading across social media is the one depicting Miss Ukraine Anastasiia Lenna holding what appears to be some kind of war rifle while standing in front of an embattled building.
It turns out that the "weapon" she is seen holding is an airsoft gun for children.
This did not stop allegedly "independent" and "conservative" news outlets like Breitbart News from spreading it around along with the claim that Miss Ukraine is among 36,000 women who are "serving in the military" to fight back against the Russian invasion.
Circulation of this image went so far that Miss Ukraine herself felt compelled to respond with the following emphatic message:
"I AM NOT A MILITARY, JUST A HUMAN."
So much for all the "fact checking" we are told is happening across mainstream and social media, eh?
More related news coverage can be found at Propaganda.news.
Sources for this article include: