MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

McCarthyism Inc: Introducing the Counter-Terror ‘Experts’ Hyping Russian Threats and Undermining Our Civil Liberties | Alternet

Posted by Martin C. Fox on November 15, 2017

https://www.alternet.org/grayzone-project/terror-cranks-sold-america-russia-panic

The New York Times cited a new organization called the Alliance for Securing Democracy as the source of the allegations about the NFL protests.

However, an investigation by AlterNet’s Grayzone Project  has yielded a series of disturbing findings at odds with the established depiction. The researchers behind the ASD’s “dashboard” are no Russia experts, but rather a collection of cranks, counterterror retreads, online harassers and paranoiacs operating with support from some of the most prominent figures operating within the American national security apparatus.

Andrew Weisburd, an ASD fellow who inspired and helped design its Hamilton 68 dashboard, has been solicited by the New York Times and Washington Post for expert quotes on Russian meddling. Neither outlet bothered to mention Weisburd’s well-documented history of online vigilantism, including his founding of a one-man, anti-Palestinian web monitoring initiative that specialized in doxxing left-wing activists, Muslims and anyone he considered “anti-American.” Weisburd’s murderous and homophobic fantasies about Glenn Greenwald, the editor of a publication the ASD has flagged without explanation as a vehicle for Russian influence operations, have also passed without notice by reporters promoting his findings.

In recent days, the ASD’s master Kremlinologists have branded major American online outlets including the Intercept, Antiwar.com, ESPN, and even the U.S. military newspaper Stars and Stripes as vehicles for Kremlin propaganda. ASD researchers emphasized that the outlets they placed within Russia’s supposed influence network were merely “relevant to Russian messaging themes.” But they failed to explain how they became relevant, making it almost impossible to know why the outlets listed on the dashboard were being amplified by any Russian influence operation, or whether they were at all.

As the government’s crusade against Russian meddling widens, it appears increasingly like a pretext for online surveillance, ramped up securitization of social media and the suppression of dissent. In such a paranoid environment, the labeling of online news with a “nutrition value” may not be far off. Wherever the meltdown leads, Americans can rest assured it will all be justified in the name of preserving our democratic freedoms, while ASD’s Watts calls on the government to “quell information rebellions” with censorious measures imposed from above.

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I am not a number. I am a free man!-Number 6

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