FBI Investigating Russian Connections To Far-Right Websites Including Breitbart, Infowars, Etc. (DETAILS)

With the 2016 election over, many questions still remain as to its outcome and if it is to be considered legitimate. As of now, the FBI and other intelligence agencies are still looking into Russian involvement in our democratic process and how the foreign power may have played a role in influencing the election results.

One of the ways Russia may have influenced the election may have been through bots that spread far right-wing media stories throughout social media.

According to McClatchy:

“Federal investigators are examining whether far-right news sites played any role last year in a Russian cyber operation that dramatically widened the reach of news stories — some fictional — that favored Donald Trump’s presidential bid, two people familiar with the inquiry say.

Operatives for Russia appear to have strategically timed the computer commands, known as “bots,” to blitz social media with links to the pro-Trump stories at times when the billionaire businessman was on the defensive in his race against Democrat Hillary Clinton, these sources said.”

Further:

“The bots’ end products were largely millions of Twitter and Facebook posts carrying links to stories on conservative internet sites such as Breitbart News and InfoWars, as well as on the Kremlin-backed RT News and Sputnik News, the sources said. Some of the stories were false or mixed fact and fiction, said the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the bot attacks are part of an FBI-led investigation into a multifaceted Russian operation to influence last year’s elections.

Investigators examining the bot attacks are exploring whether the far-right news operations took any actions to assist Russia’s operatives. Their participation, however, wasn’t necessary for the bots to amplify their news through Twitter and Facebook.”

This past election cycle, the far-right in particular waged a war of disinformation like one that really hasn’t been seen before. It didn’t matter if a story wasn’t real, if it was anti-Hillary or pro-Trump it went out fast and spread like wildfire. Not only were the stories mass created, but they were also seemingly consumed by readers at an alarming rate.

McClatchy reports:

“As for the bots, they carried links not only to news stories but also to Democratic emails posted on WikiLeaks, especially those hacked from Podesta and made public in October, said Philip Howard, a professor at the Oxford University Internet Institute who has researched the bot attacks.

Study of bot-generated Twitter traffic during last fall’s Trump-Clinton campaign debates showed that bot messages favorable to Trump significantly outnumbered those sympathetic to Clinton.”

Hopefully federal investigators get to the bottom of what is happening on the far-right internet to affect the outcome of elections. If there is a connection to Russia, not only would that be huge news, but it would confirm long-held suspicions by many on the left in regards to the disinformation campaign that’s been going on for years by the right.

Russia is clearly trying to insert itself for its own benefit into elections and policy around the globe. It needs to be stopped, and it needs to be stopped now.


Featured Photo by Marianna Massey/Getty Images