The Russian defense ministry has released a propaganda video to show the “strenuous” work of repair units during a “special operation” in Ukraine. The video was supposed to come from the “battlefield” in the Kiev region, where intense tank fights took place. Independent journalists have determined that the demonstration material was recorded near Belgorod, Russia.
“The resort forgot to remove the metadata from the file. After examining them, we were able to determine where this material was actually recorded” – emphasized journalists from Current Time TV, a project of Radio Swoboda and Voice of America.
A one-and-a-half minute propaganda video entitled “The work of repair units during a special military operation” was posted on the Telegram channel of the Russian Defense Ministry in mid-May. “Specialists conduct ongoing inspections and repairs of military equipment and weapons. For this purpose, repair and regeneration points have been located in the field” – stated in the entry under the recording.
“We come to the battlefield, pick up the damaged, broken equipment” – an anonymous Russian soldier wearing a military helmet and a balaclava said in the demonstration material. In the background, an armored evacuation vehicle is shown, a tank marked with the letter “Z” (a symbol of the Russian invasion) pulling across the wilderness. Several soldiers with their faces blurred in the video were changing engines. “In various cases, it was necessary (the tanks – ed.) To be taken directly from the battlefield, under fire” – claimed the soldier in the balaclava.
The recording was supposed to come from the Kiev region, where fierce battles between Russian troops and the armed forces of Ukraine continued in March. In early June, the Current Time website published a publication refuting the claims of the Russian Ministry of Defense.
“The location of the video was not at all the Kiev region, where intense tank battles took place, but the 357th training center of the Russian space forces, located west of Belgorod, 25 minutes drive from the city center,” Current Time reported. Journalists said they figured it out based on metadata (hidden features of the file) that includes the exact geographic coordinates of where the photos were recorded.
“The analysis of the video itself confirms that the ‘damaged’ tank was towed at the training center and the nearby Fazenda gardening association, whose houses were also visible in the Ministry of Defense shots” – the portal wrote.
Current Time journalists reported that they also analyzed several dozen other films on the Telegram channel of the Russian defense department. However, most of them do not have geolocation data, they reported.
Main photo source: Telegram / @ mod_russia