Russia did not invade Ukraine to stop a NATO genocide in eastern regions

By: Iryna Hnatiuk
January 5 2024

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Russia did not invade Ukraine to stop a NATO genocide in eastern regions


The Verdict False

There is no evidence that the people of eastern Ukraine were subject to systematic extermination.

Claim ID b18c9a89


A post shared on Instagram on December 19 includes a video of The Jimmy Dore Show with text superimposed, claiming that "On Feb 24th 2022, Russia stopped a genocide by NATO in Eastern Ukraine." In the video, Jimmy Dore, an American stand-up comedian, political commentator, podcaster, and YouTube personality, claims that in 2014 "Nazis in the Ukrainian government, backed by NATO, started shelling people in eastern Ukraine" because they disagreed with them. Then, according to the speaker, "Putin invaded to protect these people."

In fact

There is no evidence of planned genocide in the eastern regions of Ukraine. The claim was spread widely after Maria Zakharova, the Director of the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, stated in February 2022 that there was a "systematic extermination of the Donbas population." However, an OSCE monitoring mission active in Ukraine since 2014 has found no evidence of mass targeted killings of civilians in the Donbas region. The Russian Foreign Ministry has not provided any proof to back up Zakharova’s claim.

A statement signed by more than 300 historians who study genocide, Nazism, and World War II, says Putin’s rhetoric about de-Nazifying fascists among Ukraine’s elected leadership is "propaganda."

The claim about Nazis in the Ukrainian government also has no grounds. The only far-right-oriented political force, "Svoboda" (Freedom), had a short-lived rise in popularity from 2012 to 2014, but is no longer represented in Parliament. Ukrainian President Zelenskyy is of Jewish heritage, and his family members were killed in the Holocaust.

Jared McBride, an adjunct history professor at UCLA whose work specializes in nationalist movements and mass violence and genocide in Russia and Ukraine, told Logically Facts, "The claim that neo-Nazi or far-right groups hold any significant power in Ukraine is absurd."

Benjamin Nathans, who teaches and writes about imperial Russia and the Soviet Union, modern European Jewish history, and the history of human rights at the University of Pennsylvania, agrees, telling Logically Facts, "Ukraine has a small, right-wing nationalist contingent like many countries, including France, Germany, the USA, and — not least — Russia," Nathans said. "Neo-Nazi elements are not present in Zelensky’s government to the best of my knowledge."

The text part of the Instagram publication calls attention to bio-weapon laboratories "operating all over Ukraine," adrenochrome labs, and child and human trafficking in Ukraine. Logically Facts has previously debunked these claims.

The verdict

There is no evidence of the Ukrainian government committing genocide in eastern regions of Ukraine or the Nazi elements being presented in the Ukrainian government. Ukrainian president Zelenskyy was democratically elected, not appointed by the US or NATO. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.

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