Russia's troll factories were, at one point, likely being paid by the Kremlin to spread pro-Trump propaganda on social media.
That is what freelance journalist Adrian Chen, now a staff writer at The New Yorker, discovered as he was researching Russia's "army of well-paid trolls" for an explosive New York Times Magazine exposé published in June 2015.
"A very interesting thing happened," Chen told Longform's Max Linsky in a podcast in December.
"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," he said.
Okay, okay now that does seem a little suspicious. But it doesn't really mean anything right?
Courtesy of Threat Connect:
In our initial Guccifer 2.0 analysis, ThreatConnect highlighted technical and non-technical inconsistencies in the purported DNC hacker’s story as well as a curious theme of French “connections” surrounding various Guccifer 2.0 interactions with the media. We called out these connections as they overlapped, albeit minimally, with FANCY BEAR infrastructure identified in CrowdStrike’s DNC report.
Now, after further investigation, we can confirm that Guccifer 2.0 is using the Russia-based Elite VPN service to communicate and leak documents directly with the media. We reached this conclusion by analyzing the infrastructure associated with an email exchange with Guccifer 2.0 shared with ThreatConnect by Vocativ’s Senior Privacy and Security reporter Kevin Collier. This discovery strengthens our ongoing assessment that Guccifer 2.0 is a Russian propaganda effort and not an independent actor.
(By the way ThreatConnect is a group of researchers in Arlington, Virginia workign to unravel the source behind the hack of DNC emails.)
Alright now, that is a little worse, and certainly seems to be further proof that the Russians hacked the DNC, and released their information to Wikileaks so that Julian Assange, who hates Hillary Clinton, could release it right when it would do he most political damage to the Democratic presidential campaign.
But that is not proof that Trump is in cahoots with the Russians and since he just claimed to have "zero investments" with them I'm sure that when he releases his taxes they will back that up.
Wait, what's this?
Courtesy of The Hill:A top aide to Donald Trump said Wednesday that the Republican presidential nominee "will not be releasing" his taxes.
Yeah well it's not like there is any evidence of Trump actually ASKING the Russians to hack and release potentially harmful information about Hillary Clinton.
Courtesy of Politico:
Donald Trump invited Russia to hack Hillary Clinton on Wednesday, asking them to find “the 30,000 emails that are missing” from her time as secretary of state.
“It would be interesting to see, I will tell you this, Russia, if you're listening I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” the Republican nominee said at a news conference in Florida. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
And we're done here.