The Russian Ministry of Defense posted a screenshot of a video games as “irrefutable evidence” of U.S. collusion with ISIS on social media Thursday.
The screenshot was taken from a video game called “AC-130 Gunship Simulator: Special Ops Sqauadron.”
Several other pictures posted as evidence by the Russian MOD were taken from old screenshots of Iraqi and coalition forces destroying ISIS convoys in Fallujah, Iraq. In June, Iraqi and coalition forces decimated a convoy of nearly 700 ISIS vehicles as the militants attempted to flee Falujah.
The post by the Russian MOD has since been taken down, but screenshots have been making the rounds on social media. Bellingcat, an investigative journalism outlet that specializes in open source intelligence analysis, was first to break the story.
The Russian MOD claims the U.S. military helped provide cover to an ISIS convoy fleeing the Syrian town of Abu Kamal on Nov. 9.
Col. Ryan Dillon, a spokesperson for the U.S.-led coalition against ISIS in Iraq and Syria, responded to Russia’s allegations, calling them “about as accurate as their air campaign.”
Russia has routinely alleged U.S. and ISIS collusion when facing major setbacks from its own campaign, Dillon explained to reporters during a televised press briefing at the Pentagon on Tuesday.
The Russians have faced a series of setbacks. In Deir ez-Zor, Syria, both Russian and Syrian forces were beset by territorial losses from a large-scale ISIS counteroffensive in late September to early October.
Moreover, the Syrian regime recently claimed to have liberated the town of Abu Kamal, and that is not true, Dillon told reporters. And a recent Russian airstrike in Aleppo killed nearly 50 civilians, Dillon added.
The Russian MOD is trying to “deflect from their issues and their challenges,” Dillon said.
“Anything that comes out of the Russian MOD is suspect.”
Shawn Snow is the senior reporter for Marine Corps Times and a Marine Corps veteran.