Antifake / Factcheck

16 August 2023

Top-5 Fake News. Sex shows with children on TV in the Netherlands; the Chinese love to travel to Belarus

Further: Ukraine and Poland are friends just until the end of the war, workers in Western countries are completely lazy, and Formula One promotes LGBTQ+. Top-5 Fake News spotted by the Weekly Top Fake team.

Fake#1 Ukraine and Poland are friends until the end of the war, Podolyak claims

Fake date 9.08.2023

Propaganda in Belarus is playing around alleged strife and tension between Kyiv and Warsaw after the comments made by a senior official in the Polish president’s office, who said Ukraine was ungrateful for the country’s help.

As proof, the statement of Mykhailo Podolyak, the adviser to the head of Zelensky’s office, was quoted on ONT, the state-run TV channel.

“Another quote. This time Mykhailo Podolyak from Zelensky's office worded it. 

Warsaw will lose the 'close friend of Kyiv' status after the end of the special military operation. Ukraine considers Poland its close friend until the end of hostilities. The adviser to the head of the office of the President of Ukraine said that after it’s over, the competition relationships will be established between the countries,” Dmitry Bochkov, the program 'Objectively' host, said on August 9. 

However, this was a distortion. Here is what Mykhailo Podolyak in particular said on the air of  Freedom, the TV channel: 

“Nowadays we have a problem. The grain corridors of the sea route are closed. We need to expand land grain corridors, and this is a subject of discussion.

There is another concern, and this is the third issue. The discussion must be conducted quite accurately, correctly and as openly as possible. And one should be not afraid of public discussion.

I don't see any problem in the current discussion between Poland and Ukraine.

And for sure, this talk will not lead to any tears, breaks, or something like that. 

Poland is the closest partner and friend we have these days. And it will remain this way until the end of the war. After it’s over, of course, we will have a competitive relationship, of course, we will compete for various markets, consumers, and so on”.

Thus, they are talking about the normalization of competitive market relations after the end of the war, not about their friendship ending.

Both countries are significant global grain exporters.

Fake#2 Belarus is at the top of China's preferred travel destinations

Fake date 6.08.2023

Since there’s been a confrontation between the US and China, Belarusian—Chinese relations have been stabilizing, so Belarus has become one of the favorite travel destinations for Chinese tourists, representatives of Belarus 1, the state-run TV channel, said

“Representatives of twin cities from China have been increasingly visiting Belarus.

The prospects for cooperation have no limits. Our country is at the top of China's preferred travel destinations,” the program ‘Main Air’ hosts said on August 6.

The Chinese search giant Baidu report highlights the most popular Chinese travel search queries of the first half of 2023.

The most popular destinations were Thailand, Japan, the USA, Singapore and the Maldives. In the top 10, there was just one European country in, the UK.

There were Hong Kong, Macau and Tokyo in the list of leaders in terms of flight ticket search. And from European cities — just London.

The hotels of cities Macau, Paris and Hong Kong were on top of the rating. There was no Minsk in it.

This is also confirmed by other studies. At the end of 2022, the marketing company Dragon Trail International surveyed the Chinese. They were asked where they would like to go after the lifting of all covid restrictions. Answering, most of them said about all the same Asian destinations: Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, Thailand and South Korea. There was France in 6th place.

In the previous year survey, the Chinese also mentioned Russia, but it has ceased to be attractive to tourists because of the war.

There was no mention of Belarus in any of the studies.

Fake#3 Formula One promotes LGBTQ+

Fake date 3.08.2023

Formula One promotes LGBTQ+, political scientist Vadim Elfimov said on the air of Radio Minsk, the state-run media outlet.

“The next year, they began to push forward the LGBT theme. The beautiful girls used to wear short skirts, representing each driver, each team. They considered it wrong from the point of view of LGBT ethics. They replaced girls with young men.

Then, ahead of the start, they forced all Formula One racing drivers — who receive a lot of money, earn millions of euros, people are independent — to kneel. But there were refuses. By the way, our Russian racing driver Kvyat has also refused. The following year he was removed,” the political scientist said on August 3.

In 2020, Formula One racing drivers really have taken a knee ahead of the Austrian GP. The gesture was not in support of LGBT but against racism and prejudice. Lewis Hamilton, the racing driver currently competing in Formula One, driving for Mercedes, has urged his colleagues to do so.

Six of them have refused, including Russian Daniil Kvyat, and both Formula One stars Charles Leclerc, the Ferrari driver, and Max Verstappen, the Red Bull racing driver. It hasn't affected their careers.

Daniil Kvyat has left Formula One due to a lack of success in racing, but not because of his sympathies.

Fake#4 Labor productivity is extremely low in the West

Fake date 9.08.2023 

The Western countries' economy was based just on the robbery of African countries because in the West people do not want to work. Such a statement was made by Oleg Romanov, the head of the pro-Lukashenko association Belaya Rus, on August 9. In particular, commenting on the military coup in the former French colony of Niger, he said on the air of the Belarusian state TV channel ONT:

«Let's look at a completely different Europe and a different America. I would emphasize once again, that they do not live thanks to their productive labor. We are well aware that the work ethic in European and American countries is extremely low.

They don't want to work. Loafers, homeless people, whatever, live on social benefits, just not to work. The question is, what is the source of profit? Where do huge corporate profits come from?

And here is where it comes from.”

According to ILOSTAT, the leading source of labor statistics, in Niger GDP per hour worked is $1,66, meaning not a salary per hour of work, but the cost of the product that the average worker has created during this time. 

In the leading countries in terms of productivity, for example, Luxembourg, the same indicator of productivity is $136 per hour. That is 80 times more. In the US, productivity is 43 times greater.

In Belarus, it is $21.5 per hour — on the level of Egypt, Iraq, and Equatorial Guinea.

It is said in the article of the National Bank Journal ‘Bankovskij Vestnik’, that the average worker in the Belarusian industry creates products worth $13,000 a year. In China, productivity is twice as large, in Japan — 6 times, and in the USA — almost 9 times. This is explained by innovation and the development of technology.

Fake#5 Sex shows with children on TV in the Netherlands

Fake date 4.08.2023

Grigory Azarenok and  ‘Minskaya Pravda’ newspaper accused the West of broadcasting the TV show where children play with sex shop toys.

“I think you understand why we blocked this. You are no longer humans. Those who filmed it are no longer people. They aren't even animals. Even rats take care of their offspring. You are just demons. You just must be exterminated,” Azarenok commented on the video on August 4.

The propaganda newspaper ‘Minskaya Pravda’ covered this in more detail:

“Dutch television aired a shocking show. The video shows how children unpack some of the stuff from a sex shop and react to it. This nightmarish spectacle once again demonstrates the top of Western madness.

Today in the Netherlands TV broadcasts content aiming to show how kids react to adult toys. Should we talk about sodomy in the Netherlands?”

Journalists from the Weekly Top Fake project discovered this video in its entirety. Its meaning is completely different. If Azarenok had demonstrated the video till the end, viewers would've read its message: “Innocent fantasy for these girls. A horrific reality for millions of others”. 

This video has a social mission, combating child prostitution. It was published in 2017. Those days, from the 15th to the 21st of May, Free a Girl, a week against child prostitution, was held in the Netherlands.

Thanks to that action, over €400,000 was raised to help the affected children. Also thanks to the video about the problem and called people to react.

The initiative Free a Girl fights the sexual exploitation of children and has already saved nearly 7,000 girls in six countries around the world.

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