Photo: Screenshot from a video
The post we are fact-checking contains a series of manipulations and untruths by presenting the Russians as some kind of heroes fighting for a piece of land as though it was theirs, without even mentioning the disastrous damages inflicted and the thousand civilian victims suffered by Mariupol because of the Russian aggression. In addition, the post never mentions the difficult life of those who stayed in the city, thereby manipulating that there is a “land of milk and honey”. The post falsely claims that the Macedonians also lost their state. North Macedonia is an independent and sovereign state with unchanged borders, writes Truthmeter.mk.
Under the content-sharing agreement between Truthmeter.mk and Meta.mk, we republish the text below:
We are fact-checking a post on Facebook justifying Russian aggression in Ukraine by using manipulation narrative drawing a completely unacceptable parallel with our country.
During the clashes in Ukraine, when some cities were destroyed to the ground, many people were asking why were the Russians fighting at all when nothing was left on that piece of land. These people have a frightfully low level of awareness and reason, and they are a flagrant example of why we lost our state without the slightest resistance. You retarded creatures – the struggle is for THAT PIECE OF LAND, and not about the things built on that plot of land. The video is from the beginning of the academic year in MARIUPOL. Neither the school, nor the surrounding buildings existed before the Russians took over Mariupol, and now they are there. The struggle is for a piece of land – that is what they are dying for. Every day, we, as a generation of Macedonians, are allowing the loss of land, “inch by inch” and we don’t even talk about it, believing that we will change the reality by keeping quiet. Or maybe we are such ******* that we even console ourselves by believing that it will hurt less if we ignore reality, states the post we are fact-checking.
Several false and manipulative claims can be identified in this post. Let’s go, one by one.
A video is shared from a school in Mariupol – which is under Russian occupation – praising the Russians for building the city without mentioning the thousands of civilian victims therein.
Mariupol is a Ukrainian city that suffered – by far – the greatest destruction from the very beginning of the Russian aggression. Last year on 2nd March the city, for example, was exposed to a 14-hour missile strike by the Russian Army, which was also confirmed by local Ukrainian authorities. Hundreds of civilians were killed. 10th March (2022) the children’s hospital in Mariupol was attacked with missiles and that was also confirmed by the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, and by the Chairperson of the Regional Miniltary Administration, Pavlo Kyrylenko. More information about the Mariupol attacks can be found here.
It is hard to definitely say how many people stay in Mariupol. Before the beginning of the Russian full-scale invasion, almost 430,000 people used to live here. Now, according to the advisor to the Mayor of Mariupol, Petro Andryushchenko, there are about 90,000 residents left in the city, of whom 65,000 are pensioners. Others, either became refugees (about 350.000 people), or were killed.
According to the Mayor of Mariupol, Vadim Boychenko, since the beginning of the invasion, Russian invaders have damaged 2.208 residential buildings. Of these, 50 percent (which is more than 1.100 houses) were destroyed.
Now they are demolishing them, leaving pits and piles of stones. 282 high-rise buildings have already been dismantled, and the occupiers plan to demolish about 700 houses, stated the Mayor (June 2023).
The testimonies of the residents of the city depict life in Mariupol, as published by Guardian. In a series of anonymous interviews with the Guardian, people said Mariupol had been transformed into a gloomy version of the Soviet Union since the last Ukrainian defenders holed up in the Azovstal steelworks surrendered to the Russian troops a year ago.
Meanwhile, the Kremlin was indoctrinating young people in the city. Schools and kindergartens had reopened under a Russian curriculum and the Ukrainian language had been banned.
The brainwashing is very strong, one person said. ”Children are told Russia’s President is the best, and Ukraine is full of bad people and fascists. It’s like the USSR. There are alien slogans. Only Maths and Physics are unchanged, are some of the testimonies published in Guardian.
It is not enough just to say that the Russians are building Mariupol; the crimes that they also committed in this city and the manner in which these people are living there should also be mentioned.
Furthermore, the post claims that we have lost our state and that Macedonians have allowed to lose inch by inch every day. Such a claim is not true, because Macedonians actually have a country and North Macedonia exists as an independent sovereign state. The borders of North Macedonia have not changed, nor has anyone acquired any land. This is mere disinformation. The claim about losing the state is not substantiated with any facts and the statements put forward are arbitrary.
The post we are fact-checking contains a series of manipulations and untruths thereby presenting the Russians as heroes fighting for a piece of land, as though it was theirs, without even mentioning the disastrous damages inflicted and the thousands of civilian victims suffered by Mariupol because of the Russian aggression. In addition, the post never mentions the difficult life of those who stayed in the city, thereby manipulating with the “land of milk and honey”. The post falsely claims that the Macedonians also lost their state. North Macedonia is an independent and sovereign state with unchanged borders. Hence, this post fact-checked is assessed as untrue.