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‘UK propaganda network funded by MI6 laid the ground for Ukraine conflict’

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
A Ukrainian serviceman stands in front of a 105mm howitzer near the city of Bakhmut, on March 8, 2023, amid the Russia-Ukraine conflict. (Photo by AFP)

The Integrity Initiative, a propaganda network linked to Britain’s secret intelligence agency MI6, has demonized Russia in the West and laid the ground for the year-long conflict in Ukraine to rage on, according to a journalist.

Kit Klarenberg, an investigative journalist and Press TV Website contributor, told Press TV's Palestine Declassified program that Integrity Initiative, a British project funded by MI6 and run by British military intelligence, has sought to pin the blame on Russia for all domestic political events in the West.

“One of Integrity Initiative’s key objectives as a black propaganda unit, was to try and to fix blame on Russia for almost any and every national domestic political event across the Western world, … it also helped demonize Russia and laid the foundations for what we are seeing now in Ukraine,” Klarenberg said.

On February 24, 2022, Russia began what it called a "special military operation" in Ukraine to “de-Nazify” the country over the threat of the former Soviet republic joining the US-led NATO military alliance.

Since the outbreak of the war, which recently completed a year, the United States and Ukraine’s other Western allies not only imposed a slew of economic sanctions on Moscow but have sent Kiev tens of billions of dollars worth of weapons.

The Kremlin has repeatedly warned that sanctions on Russia and Western military assistance to Ukraine risk prolonging the war.

Klarenberg said that Integrity Initiatives has also attempted to fan Russia meddling claims in the UK saying Moscow has influenced British public opinion in favor of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union (EU), also known as Brexit.

“Integrity Initiatives helped transform a Brexit from what was a national political event in which disillusioned, disaffected people voted to leave the European Union largely out of anger at established politics to a Russian conspiracy,” noted.

He said that allegations against the Russian government for interfering in the US 2016 presidential election or fomenting separatist sentiments in 2017 Catalonia’s independence referendum are other cases of the UK’s covert propaganda efforts against Russia.

Klarenberg also mentioned Carole Cadwalladr, the Guardian’s journalist, who was at the forefront of exposing the so-called Cambridge Analytical scandal in 2018 alleging that the British consulting firm has manipulated the Brexit referendum on behalf of Russia.

Cadwalladr’s name also appeared on leaked secret documents involved with the Integrity Initiative.

“She was chasing all these red herrings and false leads about Russian connections to Cambridge Analytical, therefore in the public mind today, the average person who is familiar with Cambridge Analytical will be absolutely certain that it was a Russian intelligence operation," he remarked. 

"There is no evidence for that whatsoever."

In October 2020, the UK Information Commissioner announced that Cambridge Analytical was “not involved” in the EU referendum.

Klarenberg said in the Cambridge Analytical scandal Cadwalladr was “central in misdirecting public anger.”

“There is absolutely an agenda [in the West] trying to link wrongdoing to enemy states,” he hastened to add.

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