In a remarkable move, considering the short period of time left in office and lack of publicly available evidence supporting their claims, President Barack Obama’s administration recently announced new sanctions against Russia, which included expelling some 35 diplomats and the closure of at least two Russian compounds in the United States in response to allegations of Russian cyber attacks against U.S. targets.
According to CNN, a statement from the White House said: “Russia’s cyber activities were intended to influence the election, erode faith in US democratic institutions, sow doubt about the integrity of our electoral process, and undermine confidence in the institutions of the U.S. government. These actions are unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”
CNN also reported that, in response to the new sanctions, the Russian government had ordered the closure of an Anglo-American school in Moscow that served to educate the children of diplomats, embassy personnel and foreign nationals from English-speaking nations like the U.S., the U.K. and Canada.
That report of retaliation, however, has been vigorously disputed by the Russian Foreign Ministry, at least according to Russian news agency TASS.
Russia reported that the CNN claim of the school being closed was absolutely false, according to a statement posted to Facebook by foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharovawa.
“U.S. officials ‘anonymously informed’ their media that Russia closed the Anglo-American School in Moscow as a retaliatory measure,” Zakharova wrote. “That’s a lie. Apparently the White House has completely lost its senses and began inventing sanctions against its own children.”
“You should not write that ‘Moscow denied … or Moscow will not…’. Write as it is: ‘The CNN TV channel and other Western media have again spread false information citing official American sources,’” she added.
To be sure, considering the rebuttal was coming from a Russian government spokesperson through a Russian government-controlled media outlet, this report could very well be disinformation or propaganda.
That said, considering the initial report of the school closure came from CNN citing an unnamed U.S. government official, the CNN report is just as likely to be a bit of disinformation or propaganda as well, or, to use the current favored dog whistle of the left, it is “fake news” at its worst.
Rather ironic in light of how much of a stink CNN has made over “fake news” the past couple of months.
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