The Kremlin keeps at it. On Thursday, the Russian Embassy in Italy published yet another propaganda post, along with images, targeting Italy’s supposed military supplies to Ukraine in a bid to cast doubt on Rome’s logistical support and its effectiveness on the battlefield.
- This time, the Embassy’s post alleges that Russian forces in Donetsk have captured Italian-made anti-tank missiles, and are now employing them against “the Ukrainian neo-nazis.”
- “At least this weapon is in good hands,” reads the Facebook post, adding that “many NATO weapons supplied to the [Kyiv] regime end up on the black market and are resold to criminal organisations in Europe and elsewhere.”
- Just this week, Undersecretary Alfredo Mantovano rebuked Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s conspiratorial nonsense.
Minister Crosetto’s response. Hours later, through an official note, the Italian Defence Minister pushed back against the latest infowar attack. Highlighting the Russian Embassy simply re-published frames from an old video, dated June 2022; he said the post is just “the umpteenth attempt to continue the propaganda against our country and against our support for the resistance of the Ukrainian people.”
- Italy did supply anti-tank defence systems of the type mentioned by the Russian Embassy, he added, noting that the countries supporting Ukraine’s defence sent such supplies as a consequence of the Russian government’s decision “to enter the sovereign territory of another nation with troops and land vehicles.”
- “I remind the Russian Embassy that if their tanks had remained in Russia, the weapons provided to Ukraine to be able to defend itself, and therefore to survive, would have remained in the warehouses of the nations that had them.”
And again. Later that day, the Russian Embassy doubled down with another post supposedly depicting an Italian-made armoured vehicle, “destroyed during the special military operation. The fate of military vehicles transferred to the [Kyiv] regime is predictable and unenviable,” it read.
- The minister again retorted that the embassy “continues to lie in its daily propaganda by publishing obvious fake news.” The images, he explained, “do not depict Lince 4×4 Iveco vehicles, but Mls Shield armoured vehicles, as can be deduced from the ‘Venom’ symbol on the side. Vehicles never sent to Ukraine in the various aid packages sent to Ukraine by the Italian government.”
Continued support. So far, added Minister Crosetto, Italy has sent military aid to Ukraine through five decrees, whose content is classified for security reasons. “The current government continues and will continue to implement [them] in full agreement with our Parliament,” he said.
- “We have a moral duty to continue supporting the Ukrainian people, to achieve a just and truthful peace that respects international law and the self-determination of peoples, their freedom to decide to live freely and peacefully,” he told Decode39 in an exclusive interview.
- At Friday’s meeting of the Ukraine Defence Contact Group at the Ramstein Air Base in Germany, where NATO’s supplies to Ukraine are coordinated, Italy is expected to announce the composition of its sixth military aid package, recently authorised by Parliament.