Russia’s Ministry of Defense has egg on their face when they were caught lying about a serious charge that the US isn’t trying to defeat ISIS but actually is helping the Islamic State. Russia’s claims to have “irrefutable evidence” that US forces are in league with ISIS was actually footage from a video game.
Russia, along with Iran has backed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during the civil war there. US-backed peshmerga forces have also been fighting ISIS but Moscow has claimed all along that US efforts have been at best ineffective and have actually been plotting to help ISIS. So, with nothing but allegations, Moscow decided to show their “proof.” And Russians citizens quickly took them to task for it.
Russians following the ministry on social media were quick to note that one of the stills was identical to computer-generated footage from a game, uploaded on YouTube two years ago. The clip from AC-130 Gunship Simulator: Special Ops Squadron subsequently started receiving dozens of sarcastic comments.
The ministry’s crop of the image even contained parts of the disclaimer text in the top right-hand corner, presumably left by the developer, which read: “Development footage. This is a work in progress. All content subject to change.” The ministry later deleted the images.
Military research site Conflict Intelligence Team and the investigative website Bellingcat, which has previously debunked Russian state-supported stories about events in Ukraine, also identified another one of the images as a shot from footage of Iraq taken in 2016.
“What am I paying my taxes for,” one Russian user exclaimed, before veering into expletives. “This is something hands should be cut off for,” one commenter concluded. “Shame and humiliation.”
“Another embarrassment in front of the whole world. I am not even sad for the country but I laugh in unison with it,” another user chimed in.
The tweet in Russian was quickly taken down as well as the English version. But as the Russian MOD quickly found out, the internet is forever.
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Photo courtesy Wikipedia