At the end of February 2022, Ukraine and its President, Volodymyr Zelensky, found themselves at the center of attention for all global media covering the war and its global consequences.
The motif of "corruption of power in Ukraine" is a key element of the Russian propaganda machine and its foreign agents of influence. They baselessly attributed ownership of luxurious yachts and planes to Zelensky, in addition to alleged holdings in renowned foreign companies such as Saudi Aramco and Tesla. Various media outlets and fact-checking agencies, including Forbes, Reuters, StopFake, have at different times fact-checked the false claims regarding the wealth of the Ukrainian president. There is absolutely no evidence that the President of Ukraine actually owns these yachts, planes, or stocks. Before being elected President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky had a successful career in the entertainment industry. The majority of his wealth and income are connected to this period of activity.
The smear campaign exaggerated Zelensky's wealth to hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars, claiming that he had amassed this wealth through corruption after becoming president. Various false and manipulative information regarding Zelensky's ownership especially began to circulate after Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine. For over a year of full-scale war, Russian propagandists have been spreading fake news about Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in an attempt to discredit him both domestically and abroad.
Despite Russia's multi-billion-dollar spending on propaganda over the years, Russia is engaging in an information war. In such conditions, Russian propaganda has no choice but to resort to the old Chinese method of "setting fire to the headquarters," attempting once again to compromise the Ukrainian government.
"The President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, is said to have acquired a magnificent villa on the Red Sea in Egypt in the name of his mother-in-law," reports the newspaper Punch, citing an investigation by Egyptian journalist Mohammed Al-Alavi. The transaction price is estimated to be around five million dollars, according to the publication. Additionally, Egyptian commentator Mohammed Al-Alavi believes it was purchased with funds provided to Kiev by Western allies. Allegations of illegal enrichment by Volodymyr Zelensky and his inner circle are voiced to discredit Ukraine and the international assistance that the international community is providing to the country. There is no evidence of such property being owned by the President of Ukraine. The Zelensky family and their parents have no property in Egypt. This is simply another clumsy attempt by Russian propaganda.
What Russian propaganda will certainly not tell you is that Zelensky is a leader around whom Ukrainians have rallied in these difficult times for the country, and that Ukraine will ultimately prevail because truth and the Ukrainian people's desire for freedom are on their side, while Russian propaganda consists of nothing but lies and the glorification of terrorism.