Newest ‘Twitter Files’ Bombshell Confirmation: Pentagon Ran ‘Covert Online PsyOp Campaign’ – Here’s What We Know

Investigative journalist Lee Fang published the eighth “Twitter Files” installment Tuesday in which he stated that the social media giant “quietly aided the Pentagon’s covert online PsyOp campaign.” Fang’s series of tweets detailed how the Department of Defense set up an elaborate social media network to shape public opinion in the Middle East. “Despite promises to shut down covert state-run propaganda networks, Twitter docs show that the social media giant directly assisted the U.S. military’s influence operations,” Fang wrote. He shared a 2017 email from an official at U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), which included a list of 52 Arab language accounts the military used “to amplify certain messages.” In the email, the official asked for priority service from Twitter for six accounts, verification for one and “whitelist” abilities for the others. A “whitelist” flag on the accounts means they more or less have a blue check status, making them more visible and likely to trend, according to Fang. Among other topics, CENTCOM sites tweeted anti-Iranian messages and promotion of the Saudi Arabia-U.S.-backed war in Yemen. In an article for The Intercept, Fang elaborated on his “Twitter Files” post, noting that “@yemencurrent” was an example of one of the DOD’s 52 Arab-speaking accounts. Some of the other nations the Pentagon allegedly sought to influence were Syria, Iraq and Kuwait. “The accounts in question started out openly affiliated with the U.S. government. But then the Pentagon appeared to shift tactics and began concealing its affiliation with some of these accounts — a move toward the type of intentional platform manipulation that Twitter has publicly opposed,” Fang explained. “Though Twitter executives maintained awareness of the accounts, they did not shut them down, but let them remain active for years. Some remain active.” This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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