Fact check: War in Ukraine continues, contrary to post – USA TODAY

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The claim: The war in Ukraine is over

Since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine in February, countless false claims about what’s happening there have circulated online.

A Dec. 12 Facebook video (direct link, archived link) claims the war in Ukraine has ended.

“It’s All Over: Ukrainian Army Carried Out the Last Operation That Finished Off the Invading Russians,” reads the video’s caption.

The video shows a compilation of military and combat footage with overlaid text that reads, “for illustration purposes only.” It provides no evidence to support the claim and refers to the war as ongoing.

The post was viewed more than 8,000 times in two days. 

But the war in Ukraine is not over, according to news reports and government officials. There are ample reports of recent attacks, weapons deals and potential intergovernmental negotiations.

USA TODAY reached out to the social media user who shared the claim for comment.

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Several sources confirm war in Ukraine is ongoing

During a Dec. 13 press conference, one day after the Facebook post was posted, U.S. Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder said the U.S. maintains a “robust dialogue” with Ukraine to assess its security needs.

“In light of Russia’s cruel and continued heavy bombardment of innocent civilians and civilian infrastructure in Ukraine, we’ll continue to have those discussions and look at capabilities that they’ll need to defend their territory,” Ryder said.

In addition, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin participated in a call with Ukrainian leaders on Dec. 13 to discuss Ukraine’s priorities for security assistance and to condemn Russia’s ongoing attacks against civilian infrastructure, according to a Pentagon press release from that day.

On Dec. 14, White House spokesman John Kirby said at a press briefing the Biden administration has “no expectation that the fighting (in Ukraine) will stop in the winter months to come.”

The New York Times, Reuters and the Associated Press are among the many news organizations that have documented Russia’s continued attacks in Ukraine. Neither Russia nor Ukraine have announced an end to the war.

Since the Facebook post was made, Russia launched missile strikes that killed five people and left many Ukranian cities without power. The Biden administration is finalizing plans to send the Patriot missile defense system to Ukraine, according to CNN.

Fact check: Images show Russian citizen with swastika tattoo, not Ukrainian soldier

The video shown in the post is comprised of miscellaneous war footage. Its voiceover describes purported attacks by Russian and Ukrainian forces. It does not mention the war ending or provide any evidence related to the purported conclusion of the conflict.

USA TODAY previously debunked claims that the U.S. sent M1A1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, NATO sent fighter jets to Ukraine and that U.S. aid to Ukraine was laundered by cryptocurrency firm FTX.

Our rating: False

Based on our research, we rate FALSE the claim that the war in Ukraine is over. Reports from news agencies and the Pentagon provide an ongoing picture of the conflict in Ukraine, which has not ended. The post offers no evidence supporting this claim.

Our fact-check sources:

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