Hillary Clinton appears in new ‘Twitter Files’ exposing role in fomenting Russian witch hunt

In the first of two “Twitter Files” threads dropped Tuesday, journalist Matt Taibbi laid out the path by which “Twitter Let the Intelligence Community In” and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s role in fomenting the Russian witch hunt.

Previous installments of the “Twitter Files” have already shown the extent to which federal agencies like the CIA, FBI and DoD were involved in working with the social media company to suppress the speech of users to prop up the progressive agenda. Tuesday, Taibbi produced a timeline that suggested when and how the intelligence community took the reins at Twitter, “taking cues from Hillary Clinton” and with pressure from corporate media allies.

As the report explained, in August 2017 Facebook had suspended some 300 accounts of “suspected Russian origin” which had former Twitter Public Policy Vice President Colin Crowell advising internally to keep “the spotlight” on the other platform while they had found a paltry 22 possible Russian accounts to suspend.

However, those results were unsatisfactory to the narrative and Sen. Mark Warner (Va.), the ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee held a press conference contending the report was “frankly inadequate on entry level.”

The following day, Crowell wrote to Twitter’s then-CEO, co-founder Jack Dorsey, and spoke of the closed-door meeting with members of the Intelligence Committees that highlighted Warner’s “political incentive to keep this issue at top of the news” as a hearing was set in just over a month and that, “Democrats [were] also taking cues from Hillary Clinton, who in her ‘What Happened’ book tour is pointedly talking about role of Russian propaganda and dirty tricks that were pushed through social media had in her demise.”

As Clinton embarked on her book tour and continued to blame Russian interference for her loss to then-candidate Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election she said then, “It’s time for Twitter to stop dragging its heels and live up to the fact that its platform is being used as a tool for cyber-warfare.”

Within days of Crowell’s update to Dorsey, Twitter launched a “Russia Task Force” which still produced limited corroborating findings as, on Oct. 13, 2017, an internal report stated, “No evidence of a coordinated approach, all of the accounts found seem to be lone-wolf type activity (different timing, spend, targeting, <$10k in ad spend).”

Ultimately, even after adjusting the parameters of their search, “‘only 2’ significant accounts” were found out of 2500 account reviews, but the media used the data to generate headlines like “Russian Influence Reached 126 Million Through Facebook Alone.”

Because of the lack of significant findings, Twitter was berated by the press with outlets like Politico claiming “Twitter deleted data potentially crucial to Russia probes” and the outlet reporting that one Thomas Rid, a Johns Hopkins Professor, had said, “Were Twitter a contractor for the FSB [Russian Intelligence] … they could not have built a more effective disinformation platform.”

Legislation was then proposed that would change FEC regulations and impact political advertising on Twitter. And while the social media company was already feeling the need to accommodate the whims of congressional investigations to avoid being subject to damaging new laws, the Intelligence Committees were said to have leaked the rest of Twitter’s list of flagged accounts that had been cleared as insignificant.

The press flooded Twitter with inquiries as they pushed the Russian interference story further and the platform ultimately caved to pressure. As Taibbi put it, “REPORTERS NOW KNOW THIS IS A MODEL THAT WORKS,” as he summed up, “This cycle–threatened legislation, wedded to scare headlines pushed by congressional/intel sources, followed by Twitter caving to moderation asks–would later be formalized in partnerships with federal law enforcement.”

Citing policy contrary to the publicly stated content removal “at our sole discretion,” the report showed, “Internal Guidance: Any user identified by the U.S. intelligence community as a state-sponsored entity conducting cyber operations against targets associated with U.S. or other elections, or an entity associated with such operations, shall not be allowed to advertise on Twitter.”

As he concluded, “Twitter let the ‘USIC’ into its moderation process,” following cues from Clinton, and “It would not leave.”


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