Heroes or hoax? In Ukraine, effective propaganda prevails amid report Snake Island forces still alive

From the moment Russia stepped foot into Ukraine, images of unbelievable courage and valor from Ukrainian citizens and its military have circled the globe faster than you can say, “Omicron,” inspiring people from around the world to declare unwavering support for the Eastern European country, as Russian President Vladimir Putin unleashes the might of the Russian armed forces against unarmed civilians and defiant soldiers.

None have been so powerful as the 13 troops on the tiny, but very strategic, Zmiinyi Island — aka, Snake Island — as they faced off against a Russian warship, warning them to surrender or die, and told them to ‘go f*** themselves.”

All 13 border guards, we were all told by very credible sources, died, but not before live-streaming their final, terrifying moments.

Ukraine’s Embassy to the United Kingdom announced that those killed would be posthumously awarded the title of “Hero of Ukraine” for their refusal to surrender to the Kremlin navy.

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy confirmed the deaths and vowed to honor the fallen soldiers for their bravery.

And social media erupted with cries of  love and solidarity.


But what if it never happened? What if the entire story was fake?

Because according to the latest reports, that’s exactly what it was:  pure propaganda.

Because, as the Daily Mail reports, it now seems that all those Ukrainian heroes survived, surrendered, and are prisoners of war.

“Almost a dozen photos released by Russia purportedly show the men boarding buses, being given bottled water and a food parcel, before being shown sitting in their seats,” the Daily Mail states.

There’s even a video, not nearly as inspirational, but viral, nonetheless.

In fact, Ukraine’s national police have even admitted that the “information received at the time of the attack about the death cannot be confirmed,” and they sure hope “the boys return home as soon as possible.”

It would be one thing if this was just one story that was blatantly false, but that simply isn’t the case. Indeed, the vast  majority of heart-wrenching, tear-jerking, awe-inspiring images coming out of Ukraine have been thoroughly debunked as nothing more than recycled photos, some years old, from completely unrelated events.

Take for example the image of a woman, her face bloodied, a bandage wrapped around her head — the apparent victim of Putin’s heartless bombing of a residential neighborhood.

Yeah… not so much.

Turns out the image was from an article written in 2018.

Or how about journalist Bernie Gores, hailed by CNN as the “first American casualty of the Ukraine crisis”? Thoughts and prayers were quickly extended… twice. Once for his sad execution at the hands of the Taliban in Afghanistan, and once for his untimely death-by-mine in Ukraine.

How about the Ghost of Kyiv? The mysterious comic-book-like hero of the skies, credited with shooting down multiple Russian fighters?

Sorry… that was from a video game.

But those sweet children, saluting the Ukrainian forces like little John John as President Kennedy’s casket passed by…?

OH, C’MON!!!

And what of Australia’s Proud Boys, doing what alt-right Proud Boys do and joining forces with the Russians?

Nope. That footage was from 2018.


Even the magnificent photos of President Zelenskyy, dressed in camo and prepared to fight on the frontlines to defend his nation were from last April.

So where does this leave us? What are we as a society to do when we can no longer distinguish between fact and fiction? When we can no longer trust our media or our leaders to present to us the truth, in all its ugly, boring, factual forms?

Who exactly gets to decide what is real and what is “disinformation”?

It’s an important question, because according to a joint statement from the White House, the European Commission, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and Canada, they are stepping up their “coordination against disinformation and other forms of hybrid warfare.”

Which truth will they defend?

Glenn Beck warned us in 2020 that the day would come when “everything is going to be indecipherable. Rumors, accusations are going to be backed up and contructed in ways where you will not be able to tell the difference. Your eyes and your ears are no longer going to help you.”

That time has clearly come.

And as Jordan Schachtel points out, challenging the “noble lies” makes you an agent of the enemy.



( Note: Olympic Media is helping truckers meet their financial needs)

Melissa Fine


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