They’re Recycling The Viagra Rape Atrocity Propaganda They Used On Libya

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    by Caitlin Johnstone, Caitlin Johnstone:

    The west is advancing the claim that Putin is distributing Viagra to his soldiers so that they can more effectively rape Ukrainians, which was a ridiculous propaganda narrative the first time the west used it to manufacture consent for regime change in Libya.

    In a Thursday interview with the French government-owned news agency AFP, a Mauritian-British official from the United Nations named Pramila Patten claimed that Russia has a “military strategy” of mass rape in Ukraine and that Russian soldiers are being “equipped” with the erectile dysfunction medication Viagra in order to facilitate that military strategy.

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    “When you hear women testify about Russian soldiers equipped with Viagra, it’s clearly a military strategy,” Patten said.

    Because AFP is one of the major propaganda multipliers whose material is republished by news media outlets around the world, Patten’s completely unevidenced claim of weaponized Viagra has been uncritically reported as a real news story by outlets like CNNThe New York PostForbesThe IndependentThe Hill, and Yahoo News. This claim will now be folded into many rank-and-file mainstream news consumers’ understanding of what is happening in Ukraine, despite its brazenly propagandistic nature.

    The only other time the west has been hammered with a story about marauding Viagra-armed rape brigades like this was in 2011, when the western empire was circulating atrocity propaganda to manufacture consent for regime change interventionism in Libya. In March of that year an email later published by WikiLeaks was sent to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by her private advisor Sidney Blumenthal, informing her of an unconfirmed “rumor” that Libya’s longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi “has adopted a rape policy and has even distributed Viagra to troops.” Blumenthal notes that this claim originated from “the rebel side” of the conflict, which we now know included Al Qaeda, whom Gaddafi had been fighting.

    The following month that “rumor” was repeated before the UN national security council by Susan Rice, another Obama administration official, this time presented not as a rumor but as a reality. Although anonymous US military intelligence officials informed the press the very next day that they had no evidence of Rice’s claim, by June an International Criminal Court investigation was underway with western news media continuing to uncritically report claims of weaponized Viagra in Libya.

    Meanwhile, another UN human rights investigator named Cherif Bassiouni said he’d found those allegations to have arisen from “massive hysteria” and that both sides of the conflict had been making them about the other. Amnesty International failed to turn up any evidence of mass rapes and weaponized Viagra in Libya, and a 2016 report by the British Parliament found that the false “humanitarian intervention” by NATO forces which resulted in Gaddafi’s death had in fact been based on lies.

    This information came far too little, far too late. The case was made for intervention and Libya was plunged into chaos and humanitarian catastrophe by the western empire and its jihadist proxies on the ground, putting a final nail in the coffin of the claim that NATO is a “defensive alliance”.

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