News media is now recycling Cold War lies

Mark Twain once said, “History Doesn’t Repeat Itself, but It Often Rhymes.”
With all due respect to Mr. Twain, sometimes it DOES repeat itself. Especially when it comes to lies the government tells.

United Kingdom Ministry of Defence accused Russia of using anti-personnel mines that have previously been mistaken for toys by children, in its war against Ukraine.
..."In Donetsk and Kramatorsk, Russia has highly likely attempted employment of PFM-1 and PFM-1S scatterable anti-personnel mines. Commonly called the butterfly mine, the PFM-1 series are deeply controversial, indiscriminate weapons. PFM-1s were used to devastating effect in the Soviet-Afghan War where they allegedly maimed high numbers of children who mistook them for toys," the statement said.

One of the few advantages to getting older is that you see the same stuff come back around. For example, this NY Times headline: Soviet Toys Of Death.
The Christian Science Monitor took it to the next level: The Afghan child and the bright red plastic truck
The Heritage Foundation went as far as accusing the U.N. of covering up Soviet atrocities in Afghanistan, which included the Soviet's desire to murder children.
Even as late as 2012, this was still being told.

During the 1980s, as part of the Soviet campaign to drive out the rural population, children were specifically targeted....Soviet aircraft also dropped a variety of “toy” bombs on Afghan villages and rural fields — mines and bombs made to look like toys — which maimed many children.

And now those evil Russians/Soviets are at it again. Intentionally targeting children! Can you imagine that? How evil can those Soviets be?

Major U.S. networks acquired footage, often cooked or staged, showing just how the toy bombs supposedly worked. There was even a demonstration on a popular Sunday evening news magazine showing a “captured toy bomb” disguised as a Russian Matryoshka doll exploding with devastating effect. What could have a greater impact than the vision of a Russian nesting doll exploding in the hands of a little Afghan girl out tending the family’s goats! The massive media coverage even prompted an investigation by the United Nations Commission on Human Rights.

Clearly the Soviets had to be evil. There was no military strategy that would justify this, so "evil" was all that was left to explain. Well, there was one other explanation, but our news media never even considered it.

But it was bogus.

Oh right. The old "if it doesn't make any sense at all, then it might not be true."
Well, who is this guy? Obviously he doesn't know what he's talking about.

As CIA chief in Pakistan in 1986, my mission included managing the Agency’s massive CA program in support of the Afghan Mujaheddin.

OK. Maybe he might know what he's talking about.

I reported that the so-called toys that had, to be sure, injured and killed so many Afghan children were actually Soviet sub-munitions known as "butterfly bombs”, PFM-1 air-dispensed anti-personnel bomblets that became armed after striking the ground. These munitions, I reported, dispersed in great numbers in the hills and valleys of Afghanistan, did, indeed, attract the curiosity of Afghan children; and, upon disturbing them in even the slightest, the bomblets would explode, killing or seriously injuring the child. In effect, horrific numbers of Afghan children were being killed and maimed by Soviet butterfly mines. But also, to be sure, these were not sub-munitions intentionally disguised as toys, a distinction that might actually be a difference.

Here's a photo of those Soviet "toy bombs".

Evil Soviet Toy bomb

I know what you are thinking. Sure it doesn't look like a red toy firetruck like the CSM article said that it did, but if it can be mistaken in any way as a toy then it is E-V-I-L.
After all, the United States would NEVER, EVER drop explosive munitions on a nation which could be mistaken for toys by children.

In response, I received an off-the-record secure telephone call from Langley in which I was advised that both the CIA Director, Bill Casey, and President Reagan himself were deeply moved by the toy bomb story. It was a perfect fit with the president’s depiction of the Soviet Union as "the Evil Empire” and loved by all hands at the Reagan White House. In that exchange I also pointed out that the Soviet PFM-1 butterfly mine was a shameless Soviet copy of the U.S Dragons Tooth BLU-43 submunition dispersed in great numbers during the Vietnam war, with pretty much the same, sad and continuing effect on children more than a decade after the war ended. I made it clear that I was not against promoting the toy bomb story — it was effective beyond any CA specialist’s wildest dream — I was simply ensuring that CIA had an understanding that the story was false and that the Soviets might take a deeper dive into the narrative.

Wholesome Totally Not Evil American Bomb that doesn't look anything like Evil Soviet Toy Bomb

13 users have voted.


Pricknick's picture

how they're saying that russian troops are firing missles at their own personnel at zaporizhzhia nuclear power station and dropping the butterfly bombs on their own positions.

14 users have voted.

Regardless of the path in life I chose, I realize it's always forward, never straight.

earthling1's picture

The Russians are in east Ukraine to liberate the people, not kill them.
The Ukrainian troops are there to kill them, not liberate them.
Should be absolutely clear who is using these munitions.

13 users have voted.

After six years, still getting robo-calls from Marriot Hotels.
They're like herpes.

Just because they are lying to you about one side doesn't mean the other side are good guys.

In fact, "good guys" in a war are the very rare exception.

3 users have voted.
CB's picture

Here's what he stated:

  • The Russians are in east Ukraine to liberate the people, not kill them.
  • The Ukrainian troops are there to kill them, not liberate them.

Should be absolutely clear who is using these munitions.

He is absolutely correct! YOU should not be "moralizing" the situation - good/bad. He just simply stated the facts of the matter.

4 users have voted.

@CB @CB the number of Russia identifying people in the Donbass murdered by Ukraine is 40,000, more or less.
It is hard to say the Ukraine forces aren't "bad".
I am staunchly anti-war. Can't find the word for how much I stand against apartheid.
It got us into WWII, in large part. The US is supposed to be against it.

6 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture


Putin told us why he decided to start the military operation after waiting for 8 years for Ukraine to uphold the Minsk agreement. He said that after the 2 countries in the Donbas area asked for protection from Ukraine he decided to give them that. Plus demilitarization and denazisfycation. The reason it’s taking Russia so long to do that is that they are trying to keep civilian causalities low and not destroy infrastructure.

You can think that Russia is one of the bad guys in this affair but I’ve asked you before what other options did they have besides going in? Appeal to the US captured UN? Try to get Ukraine to uphold the agreement? I think that waiting 8 years while Ukraine was slaughtering 40,000 people in the Donbas was restraint enough.

And again what other country would allow another one to put nuclear weapons close to its borders without responding? Zelensky said that he was going to reprise Ukraines nuclear program. NATO has been encroaching on Russia’s borders for 30 years. Think America would have been that patient? Neither do I. Putin has been talking about this since 2007.

7 users have voted.

It is not until the tide goes out that you discover who has been swimming naked.

CB's picture

There are going to be referendums to join Russia in Kherson and Zaporizhia Oblasts next month. The rouble has already been issued and Russian passports are now available for the citizens of these Oblasts.

7 users have voted.
The Liberal Moonbat's picture

...I'm sure present company has all heard about the WWI propaganda/groupthink-gossip of German "corpse-factories":

Naturally, this set people up a generation later to disregard reports of the Holocaust as that was coming out. This is why you don't lie, don't gossip, and don't cry wolf...

...unless, maybe, that's your strategy somehow?

'Belluculture': The worst atrocity of all, and you heard the term here first, because I coined it!

6 users have voted.

In the Land of the Blind, the one-eyed man is declared insane when he speaks of colors.

To paraphrase Jodie Foster: Human is not something to aspire to, it's something to get away from.