by Seraphim Hanisch, The Duran:
Russia, Russia, RUSSIA!! The very name of that land strikes fear in the hearts of Americans everywhere. Or at least so thinks the American Democrat Party and a cyber security company known as New Knowledge. They tried the Russian Meddling ploy with President Trump, and then apparently they tried it again with the special Senate race in Alabama which featured the conservative, gun-toting Judge Roy Moore, who was brought up in the court of public opinion on sexual assault allegations that were decades old, and hounded on these allegations until he lost the Senate election.
Then, of course, he dropped off the radar, as did his accusers. New Knowledge was used to make this happen.
Their knowledge is very new indeed, as they apparently are able to make up things if they do not have real stories.
Fox News published a piece noting that New Knowledge was one of the two companies who reported on so-called Russian activity during the 2016 presidential election. The company was responsible for statements like this:
“The scale was massive,” New Knowledge researchers wrote of Russian disinformation, with the alleged campaign “reaching 126 million people on Facebook, posting 10.4 million tweets on Twitter, uploading 1,000+ videos to YouTube, and reaching over 20 million users on Instagram.”
And of course, such a report was impressive enough to get this response tweet from a (you guessed it) a Democrat Senator who is the top Dem on the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Incredible. These bombshell reports demonstrate just how far Russia went to exploit the fault lines of our society and divide Americans, in an attempt to undermine and manipulate our democracy. Here’s what we’ve learned:https://t.co/GTfDX4roLP
— Mark Warner (@MarkWarner) 17 December 2018
However, these “bombshell” reports provided by New Knowledge came under scrutiny when it was revealed in The New York Times (of all places) that they collaborated with another company known as American Engagement Technologies (AET) to replicate the same alleged “Russian interference” game during the Alabama Senate race. Fox News’ Lukas Mikelionis writes:
The secret effort, dubbed as the “Birmingham Project,” was facilitated by AET, a firm run by former Obama official Mikey Dickerson and funded by Silicon Valley billionaire Reid Hoffman, allocating $100,000 for the project.
Jonathan Morgan, the chief executive of New Knowledge, collaborated with the AET in reportedly creating thousands of fake Russian accounts on Twitter in a bid to give an impression that the Russians are supporting Republican candidate Roy Moore’s candidacy.
The project also involved creating a Facebook page and imitated conservative Alabamians who weren’t satisfied with the Republican candidate while encouraging others to write in another candidate.
The internal report of the Birmingham Project openly states that the group “ran a digital messaging operation to influence the outcome of the AL senate race” between September and December of 2017, according to BuzzFeed.
In a statement on Twitter, Morgan denied the project was aimed at influencing the election, which the Democrat and now-Senator Doug Jones won by 22,000 votes. “I did not participate in any campaign to influence the public,” he wrote, saying the project goals weren’t about supporting the Jones campaign.
He also told the Times that the project was “a small experiment” and not an actual political effort against the Republican candidate.
“The research project was intended to help us understand how these kind of campaigns operated,” he said. “We thought it was useful to work in the context of a real election but design it to have almost no impact.”
But the internal report obtained by other publications puts into question Morgan’s claims that the project was really just an experiment rather than a full-blown political campaign.
According to BuzzFeed, Dickerson and Sara Hudson, a former Department of Justice employee who went on to work for another firm funded by Hoffman, spoke at a private meeting in September where they said their secret project managed to suppress Republican votes, energize Democratic voters and plant a “false flag” against the Republican campaign.
The money trickled down through American Engagement Technologies, a firm run by Mikey Dickerson who was appointed by former President Barack Obama to lead the newly-created United States Digital Service.
The Birmingham Project’s internal report also takes credit for the high Democratic turnout and a drop in Republican turnout and said their campaign led to increased votes for write-in candidates.
Jones went on to win against the embattled Republican, who lost the support of the party amid sexual misconduct allegations, becoming the first Democratic senator from Alabama in more than 20 years.
Despite the denials, this news item has apparently taken off, with embedded links on the Fox website running as follows:
Liberal Silicon Valley billionaire Reid Hoffman issued an apology on Wednesday for funding a group that falsely tried to give an impression the Russian government was supporting Alabama Republican Roy Moore in last year’s Senate election against now-Sen. Doug Jones.
Hoffman, the co-founder of LinkedIn, is one of Silicon Valley’s top donors to the Democratic campaigns and PACs. In the last election cycle he donated $7 million to Democratic groups, though his money also pours into non-traditional groups that aren’t mandated to report their funding and often operate in the shadows.
One such groups is American Engagement Technologies (AET), a firm run by former Obama appointee Mikey Dickerson, which received $750,000 from Hoffman and was part of the effort to falsely portray the Republican’s senate bid as being supported by the Kremlin.
From what we see here, it is ever more clear that some very big players did not want Trump to win the election, and it is clear that they seek to meddle with the American election process, and also that sometimes, they succeed at it.