Friday, March 31, 2017

Perhaps the most important thing we learned from the Senate Intelligence hearing yesterday.

Courtesy of WaPo: 

In a moment that stunned the hearing room, Watts (Clinton Watts, a senior fellow at the George Washington Center for Cyber and Homeland Security) flatly stated that the president himself has become a cog in such Russian measures. When asked by Oklahoma Republican James Lankford, who appeared visibly dismayed, why, if Russians have long used these methods, they finally worked in this election cycle, Watts’ answer was extraordinary. 

“I think this answer is very simple and is one no one is really saying in this room,” he said. Part of the reason, he went on, “is the commander in chief has used Russian active measures at times against his opponents.” 

To buttress the claim that Trump (unwittingly or not) aided Russian disinformation efforts, Watts cited several instances. Among them: Trump’s citation of an apparently false Sputnik story at an October 2016 campaign appearance; his ongoing denial before and after the campaign of U.S. intelligence of Russian interference in the election; his claims of voter fraud and election rigging, which Watts said was pushed by RT and Sputnik; and Trump’s questioning of the citizenship of former President Barack Obama and even his primary rival Ted Cruz. 

Watts added that one of the reasons such tactics are working is that Trump and/or his surrogates have repeated some of the claims, further spreading them through social media accounts that are owned both by real people and bots. Thus, the disinformation is kept alive and gradually becomes more real and plausible. “Part of the reason active measures work is because they parrot the same lines,” Watts said.

Yesterday was a day when an enormous amount of excrement met the fan blades, but this statement to me was perhaps the most important thing that we heard.

Trump took what was being fed to him by Russian operatives and used it to attack and discredit his opponents in the primary, and Hillary Clinton in the general.

In short he was not simply helped by internet trolls who support him and attacked others, he himself was one of those internet trolls brought to life. 


10 comments:

  1. Anonymous9:30 AM

    Saw Watt's testimony yesterday. He was very concise, believable. Laid everything out on the table. Very damning for the Trump administration.

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  2. Anonymous9:33 AM

    There are real life usa professional citizens, university professors suffering the personal attacks and crimes against them due to this outrageous crime spree. Certain hateful students at certain universities have launched personal attacks accusation on professors in certain fields. They have attempted to ruin careers, attacked their family and life and it has caused unspeakable harm and financial distress. Each and everyone one of these bots, operatives bad actors must be held responsible and sent to prison for life. Gee and to hire pos sheriff nano nano to carry out this crime spree is beyond words. May they spend the rest of their hateful life in hell.

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  3. Anonymous9:44 AM

    Impeach the asshole at the top of the chain that has created all this harm to Americans!

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  4. Anonymous9:54 AM

    Trump acts like a far right troll whose world view has been formed by Breitbart, Alex Jones, Fox, and various other far right BS propagators. All he cares about is self aggrandizement.

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  5. Sharon10:34 AM

    I watched this hearing myself....you would hope there were more people like Clinton Watts watching over us. His testimony was riveting, no bullshit, fancy confusing bullshit...just plain facts and truth. The man really didn't need alot of notes as he has the kind of memory we all wish we had. The other 2 guys were the usual, Clinton was the real deal. Everything he said makes so much sense and combined with all the details involving the list of characters being moved around by Putin and the Cypress Bank, the sale of Trump properties to these Russian criminals that Rachel has been exposing every night...OMG what a deep and tangled web. Seems that Donald is super deep in all this money laundering and they own his ass. If we have the will to follow the money and report all of it no matter where it leads, it is gonna be huge. Watching Germany and France now as they are hacking them just like us.

    I am a huge fan of Homeland on Showtime....the last 2 episodes have introduced exactly what the Russians have done, only this is in America. A huge building with hundreds of internet geeks creating the "bots" on every social media. The writers on this show must have seen this coming as it displays what this looks like in real time. Gives me the shivers as I feel like we are all standing in quicksand.....it's hard to believe we aren't doing it too.


    The only positive thing I can cling to is maybe this is why it happened. If Clinton was elected it would have been more and worse than Obama with the GOP...keeping them in power again and again due to Dems not voting in midterms. Now with the curtain pulled back and exposing how evil they really are...we can vote them all out. Democrats have to vote, taking congress back means the money power.

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  6. Anonymous12:31 PM

    As I expected, Trump was a stupid dupe and spread the crap fed to him by putin. Too stupid to live.

    He MUST be impeached!

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  7. Anonymous1:12 PM

    I would also say to Lankford that Trump himself was deeply involved in the collusion with the Russians. I don't think Trump understands what treason means but that does not make him any less guilty. We know that Trump does not have a clue how government, at any level, works, that he has no idea what's in the Constitution or what any of it means, and that he's always got to win. For Trump, anything that would get him the prize (the White House) was legitimate. Someone has to explain to the Republicans that their LEADER has willingly placed himself in the pocket of Vladimir Putin. And now, it's up to the GOP with its control of both the Senate and the House to save the country from the fallout of Trump's playing with treason. The GOP needs to grow up and do their job.
    Beaglemom

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  8. Anonymous5:22 PM

    Gorsuch, who is that other lady on his left. Is that his wife? Nice couple.

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  9. None of which is illegal.

    They'll never impeach him for this.

    It will make him even more unpopular and totally undermine his credibility.

    But it isn't illegal.

    What they need to do is hammer him on what he *is* doing in violation of the Constitution. The emoluments. Both Ivanka and Jarrod need to be gone from the White House. Just because they aren't being "paid" doesn't mean squat. It's still a conflict and they're profiting from their positions.

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Don't feed the trolls!
It just goes directly to their thighs.