Following Special Counsel Robert Mueller's indictment of 13 Russian nationals and three entities behind a Russian "troll farm" said to have meddled in the 2016 U.S. election (admittedly, with zero impact), two people familiar with both the ads purchased by Russians on Facebook, and the "troll farm" in question have refuted Mueller's narrative over the course of four days. Indeed, things don't seem to be going well for the Russia investigation, which started out with serious claims of Collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin, and has been reduced to CNN diving through the garbage of a Russian troll farm.
About that troll farm...
Adrian Chen, staff writer for The New Yorker - who first profiled the indicted Russian troll farm in 2015, sat down with MSNBC's Chris Hayes, where he proceeded to deflate Mueller's big scary indictment to nothing.
"Tried to tamp down the troll farm panic on @chrislhayes show last night," Adrian Chen tweeted. "It's 90 people with a shaky grasp of English and a rudimentary understanding of U.S. politics shitposting on Facebook."
OMG, a sober/informed Russia take on MSNBC! @AdrianChen , who profiled indicted Russian troll farm in 2015, tells @chrislhayes that what other MSNBC guests have compared to Pearl Harbor "is essentially a social media marketing campaign" and maybe not worthy of a national freakout pic.twitter.com/UkUaK2XRPeAaron Mati (@aaronjmate) February 20, 2018
Chen then responded to a tweet saying the IRA has 300-400 individuals. "That was the entire Internet Research Agency," Chen wrote." The American department had ~90 people, according to the Russian journalists who did the most in-depth investigation."
Chen links to a Washington Post article which profiles Russian journalists who also investigated said troll farm.
That was the entire Internet Research Agency. The American department had ~90 people, according to the Russian journalists who did the most in-depth investigation. https://t.co/tfSfvjiYQs https://t.co/G2bkrzeWplAdrian Chen (@AdrianChen) February 20, 2018
A brief review:
- The former director of the FBI has assembled a "dream team" of investigators for his Special Counsel probe and concluded that 13 Russians and 3 entities tried to meddle in the election after an entire year of investigation.
- Those efforts had zero impact on the election
- Facebook's VP of ads is on record saying "I have seen all of the Russian ads and I can say very definitively that swaying the election was *NOT* the main goal
- The same FB Exec noted that most of the ads were purchased after the election.
- Suggesting that the real, underlying narrative is one of US media propaganda, he was then made to walk back his comments and apologize for his "uncleared thoughts"
- CNN is rooting around in the trash outside the troll farm.
And for all of this, Obama and Congress slapped sanctions on Russia, evicted two diplomatic compounds, and launched several Congressional investigations over.
But at least the US Military Industrial Complex is happy, while the stock of Boeing has never been higher.