Politics

Here are the accounts that first started spreading the Ukraine biolab conspiracy theory

SO TODAY, the White House is saying that there may be a false flag biological or chemical attack by the Russians in Ukraine based on a misinformation campaign they have been spreading. The Russians claimed they found evidence of biological weapons labs in Ukraine, and now the Chinese are backing them up.

What I find interesting is that I’ve been seeing lots of chatter in the fringe of right-wing twitter about “biolabs” for about a month now. They specifically say that Putin is not a bad guy, he’s just out there destroying the evil biolabs that Dr. Fauci or someone put in Ukraine after Hillary and Obama told them too, or something.

So did the Russians jump on this conspiracy theory as an opportunity to press their political advantage, or were they pushing this crap all along?

I have no idea. But it might help to see how the campaign caught fire on Twitter… here’s what I found.

This is the first instance of the conspiracy I found from January 25.

https://twitter.com/N3GoodWrench/status/1486080350124138501

Four retweets as of March 8.

This account is a QAnon supporter:

https://twitter.com/N3GoodWrench/status/1501419723057254403

And this one:

Zero retweets as of March 8.

Then nothing until February 16.

https://twitter.com/BrooksKortez/status/1493916520551882754

Zero retweets, two likes as of March 8.

That’s just a weird account that occasionally tweets whataboutism crap excusing war crimes by Putin. Like this one.

Then there are two instances from the same account from earlier on February 21.

Zero likes and zero retweets of either tweet.

February 24th is when it really explodes, at least on Twitter. There are too many to count, but here are some of the more retweeted examples:

https://twitter.com/zoospacer/status/1496816703329779712

https://twitter.com/N3GoodWrench/status/1486080350124138501

Most of these were inspired by a long thread by the account @WarClandestine, which has been suspended.

And the “ExposeDaTruthMN” account is already setting us up for a “false flag” accusation against Ukraine.

So there you go. Make of that what you will.

And before you breathlessly tweet at me in all caps that SECRETARY NULAND ADMITTED THAT THE US HAS WEAPONS BIOLABS IN UKRAINE, well you’re kind of an idiot, because that is not what happened, as Jim Geraghty explained at National Review:

Yes, Ukraine has biological-research facilities. A “biological-research facility” is not the same as a biological-weapons-research facility. (Although it is worth noting that a lot of research into dangerous pathogens is dual-use; the more you know about how to fight dangerous viruses and bacteria, the more knowledge you could theoretically apply to weaponizing viruses and bacteria.) When state-owned Russian media such as TASS breathlessly echo a Russian official’s statement that “In Ukraine, a network of more than 30 biological laboratories was created,” they really want your mind to insert the word “weapons” in between “biological” and “laboratories.”

Not that it’ll stop any of the cult tweets. I’ll post the best ones below, go!!!