Politics

Tb24 and Россия 1 Fabricated Donald Trump’s Quotes

16 April, 2018

On April 4, 2018, an online edition Tb24 released an article titled “Getting along with Russia is a good thing… Together with you, if it is possible, we want to get along with Russia.” The article highlights the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and the heads of the Baltic States held at the White House on April 3. According to Tb24, “extraordinary Trump threw cold water on the wishes of the heads of the Baltic States” and instead of covert political terms, he pointed out directly that they should make friends with Russia. Russian-language BBC is referred to as a primary source of the material.

The article released by Tb24 is manipulative.  One of President Trump’s quotes is fabricated and two are incomplete. On April 3, during a joint press conference held after the meeting with the heads of the Baltic States, Donald Trump did not tell them that they need to have friendly relations with Russia.

Real facts

During the April 3 meeting at the White House, which was dedicated to the 100th anniversary of independence of the Baltic States, bilateral political and economic relations between the Baltic States and the United States were discussed. The United States reiterated its strong support for the independence and sovereignty of these countries and also noted their important contribution to NATO operations in combating terrorism.

During the joint press conference held after the meeting, a reporter from Estonian Public Broadcasting asked the U.S. President about relations with Russian President Vladimir Putin. In response, President Trump emphasized the importance of having dialogue with Russia, mentioned the issue of expulsion of Russian diplomat by the United States and noted that “nobody has been tougher on Russia than I have.” President Trump said: “I think I could have a very good relationship with President Putin.”

To prove that President Trump openly called on the heads of the Baltic States to make friends with Russia, Tb24 provides three quotes by the U.S. President, two of which are incomplete and one cannot be searched either in BBC’s Russian-language material or the official transcript from the meeting released by the White House (see table below). Tb24 even used the fabricated quote in its headline.

Tb24.ge

Russian-language BBC

Official transcript from the meeting released by the White House

„Together with you, if it is possible, we want to get along with Russia“

________________________________ _________________________________

“… Getting along with Russia is a good thing. I think I can have a good relationship with Russia and Putin. And if I can do it, that will be a great thing.”

Дружить с Россией - отличная штука, дружить с Китаем - отличная штука, дружить с другими странами - отличная штука. Я думаю, я смог бы установить хорошие отношения с Путиным и с Россией, и если я это смогу, будет просто замечательно.

Getting along with Russia is a good thing. Getting along with China is a good thing. Getting along with other countries, including your three countries, is a good thing, not a bad thing. So I think I could have a very good relationship with Russia and with President Putin. And if I did, that would be a great thing. And there’s also a great possibility that that won’t happen. Who knows.

I think you will have great dialogue. And if you can’t, you’ll at least know about it.

Я надеюсь, у нас получится отличный диалог, а если он не получится, вы об этом узнаете. Никто не был так тверд по отношению к России, как я.

I think we’ll be able to have great dialogue, I hope. And if we can’t, you’ll be the first to know about it. Nobody has been tougher on Russia than I have.

____________________________

Мы проголосовали за большой военный бюджет, и он у нас будет больше, чем когда бы то ни было. Это не слишком хорошо для России, но именно так и будет.

We just passed a $700 billion military budget. Next year, $716 billion — the largest ever passed. We are going to have a military stronger than we’ve ever had before, by far. That’s not exactly a great thing for Russia, but that’s the way it is. We’re going to have the strongest military that we ever had.

____________________________

Никто не был так тверд по отношению к России, как я.

So there are many things that I’ve done, and not only the 60 diplomats. Germany did four. France did four. We did 60. There’s nobody been tougher on Russia.


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Quote fabricated by Россия 1

On April 4, Igor Kozhevin, the host of a program Vesti, told Россия 1 TV channel that the U.S. President congratulated the heads of the Baltic States on “the 100th anniversary of liberation from Soviet aggression.” He noted that “after President Trump congratulated the Baltic States on the 100th anniversary of liberation from Soviet aggression, the U.S. President’s attitude towards Russia became absolutely clear.”

An independent Russian TV channel Дождь also made comments on the fabricated quote. In an article released on April 10, the TV channel notes that President Trump congratulated the leaders of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia on the 100th anniversary of independence. He did not speak about the Soviet Union that is also confirmed by the transcript from the meeting.

Propaganda method

Changing the quotation, source or context – Facts, statements and sources are wrongly interpreted which serves to sow doubts and create wrong perceptions among public.


Prepared by Lia Dekanadze
Myth Detector Lab