New Yorker staff writer Adrian Chen worked on an investigative piece in 2015, where he discovered that the Russian state had what amounted to a paid army of internet trolls that would engage in campaigns of disinformation on social media.
It’s called “dezinformatsiya,” and it’s a hold over from the information warfare that Russia has engaged in since the days of the Cold War and the KGB. And it turns our that dufus Trump is in the middle of it.
Chen had compiled an extensive list of social media accounts that belonged to Russian state operatives during his 2015 research. Fast forward to now, and when Chen went back to check on his list again he noticed a funny thing. The Russian accounts still existed, but now they were masquerading as American conservatives who were supporting Trump.
I created this list of Russian trolls when I was researching. And I check on it once in a while, still. And a lot of them have turned into conservative accounts, like fake conservatives. I don’t know what’s going on, but they’re all tweeting about Donald Trump and stuff.
Chen found that these Russian social media accounts were paid by the Kremlin to spread false information on the internet. They’ve been proven to be associated with several “highly coordinated campaigns” to deceive the American public, according to him.
Michael Weiss, who is editor in chief of The Interpreter, which is an online magazine that translates and analyzes political, social and economics inside of Russia, expanded on this.
It is designed, as retired KGB General Oleg Kalugin once defined it, ‘to drive wedges in the Western community alliances of all sorts, particularly NATO, to sow discord among allies, to weaken the United States in the eyes of the people in Europe, Asia, Africa, Latin America, and thus to prepare ground in case the war really occurs.’ The most common subcategory of active measures is dezinformatsiya, or disinformation: feverish, if believable lies cooked up by Moscow Centre and planted in friendly media outlets to make democratic nations look sinister.
This is just the latest revelation that a major foreign power has been meddling in a U.S. presidential election to manipulate it in favor of the candidate of his choice. I say “his” choice, because something like this would never happen without the direct approval and control of Vladimir Putin.
Trump has been involved in something of a bromance with Putin for a while now, even openly calling for Russia to engage in cyber-warfare and espionage against Hillary Clinton and the U.S. State Department to find dirt on Hillary that would hurt her chances at becoming president.
We seriously can’t afford to have Trump in the White House. America’s best interests won’t be served by having it be a puppet state via Trump of the Russians.
Featured image via TMZ