02 mars 2023
Cako comes out with conspiracy theories about the earthquake in Turkey
The individuals who spread conspiracy theories not based on scientific data also used the deadly earthquake in Turkey to speculate about its causes.
They were offered a platform in Albanian television media to reveal their conspiracies, which were then distributed in other media and social networks in Kosovo.
More than 36,000 people died in the 7.8-magnitude earthquake in Turkey and Syria on February 6.
A few days after the disaster, the conspiracist from Albania, Alfred Cako, was a guest on the show "Zonë e Lirë” and "Jashtë Matriksit”. According to him, the earthquake in Turkey may have been caused by the so-called High-Frequency Active Auroral Research Program, known as HAARP. Without referring to any official source or scientific data, Cako claimed that the earthquake was human-caused with the intention of revenge.
He alluded to the dispute between Turkey and NATO after Finland and Sweden requested to join the Alliance. After the burning of the Quran by an extremist group in Stockholm, in January of this year, President Erdogan had threatened to block Sweden's membership in NATO. Based on this statement, Cako has speculated that Turkey may leave NATO, for which the West will punish them.
"A week ago in a show we said that Turkey can leave NATO, we said that Turkey is not obeying the decisions of Gladio, which is the secret branch of NATO [...] and Gladio does not accept the role of Turkey to stop the entry of Sweden and Finland into NATO, as one of NATO's achievements [...]Also, Erdogan is sitting on two chairs, trying to get along well with Russia and the West", said Cako.
His conspiracy theories have also been cited by online media in Albania and Kosovo such as Kosovarja, Indeksonline, Ntv.al, BotaSot, abcnews.
In addition to these statements, videos have circulated on social networks with the claim that the earthquake was preceded by a large mysterious light. The videos have been viewed over 120,000 times and commented on over 100 times. But various international media have explained the HAARP system by also verifying the facts about the false claims about the earthquake in Turkey.
Thus, "UsaToday", in the article published under the title, "The false claim that HAARP is responsible for the earthquake in Turkey", emphasizes that earthquakes occur naturally, in those places where the earth is cracked. According to the same article, the HAARP system "cannot create or amplify natural disasters". They also quoted a seismologist from Boston University who says "no one has the ability to intentionally cause a large earthquake."
Meanwhile, Jonathan Stewart, professor of environmental engineering at the University of California in Los Angeles, has said that "triggered earthquakes do not reach magnitudes above the average range of 5 points". While the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria were much bigger, namely with magnitudes of 7.8 and 7.5.
Even Jessica Matthews - manager of the HAARP program, - while debunking the claims that HAARP caused the earthquake in Turkey, said that the tragic loss of life highlights the destruction that natural disasters bring.
But what is the HAARP system?
According to HAARP, it is the world's most capable high-power, high-frequency transmitter for studying the ionosphere. Through it, the development of an ionospheric research structure is aimed, states the official website of HAARP.
The ionosphere extends approximately 50 to 400 miles above the Earth's surface, at the edge of space. Together with what is known as the upper neutral atmosphere, the ionosphere forms the boundary between the Earth's lower atmosphere - where we live - and the vacuum of space.
However, these explanations do not mention the ability to incite earthquakes on Earth or cause other disasters through this system, as claimed by conspiracy theorists and as claimed by the media that gives them platforms.
Therefore, such news that contains conspiracy theories and is not based on scientific data, is intended to cause fear and confusion in public opinion. Conspiracy theorists usually use cases of natural disasters when citizens' interest in consuming information is high, thus casting doubt on the causes and motives of disasters. In such cases, even some media outlets, for the purpose of financial gain, violate the principles of journalistic ethics by giving conspiracy theorists platforms.
02 mars 2023