US media is reporting on how what are described as pro-Trump forces worked to spread the disinformation that the so-called Antifa (anti-fascist) movement was to blame for the violence at the US Capitol on January 6. According to the New York Times report:
March 1, 2021 At 1:51 p.m. on Jan. 6, a right-wing radio host named Michael D. Brown wrote on Twitter that rioters had breached the United States Capitol — and immediately speculated about who was really to blame. “Antifa or BLM or other insurgents could be doing it disguised as Trump supporters,” Mr. Brown wrote, using shorthand for Black Lives Matter. “Come on, man, have you never heard of psyops?” Only 13,000 people follow Mr. Brown on Twitter, but his tweet caught the attention of another conservative pundit: Todd Herman, who was guest-hosting Rush Limbaugh’s national radio program. Minutes later, he repeated Mr. Brown’s baseless claim to Mr. Limbaugh’s throngs of listeners: “It’s probably not Trump supporters who would do that. Antifa, BLM, that’s what they do. Right?” What happened over the next 12 hours illustrated the speed and the scale of a right-wing disinformation machine primed to seize on a lie that served its political interests and quickly spread it as truth to a receptive audience. The weekslong fiction about a stolen election that President Donald J. Trump pushed to his millions of supporters had set the stage for a new and equally false iteration: that left-wing agitators were responsible for the attack on the Capitol.
Read the rest here.
The Global Influence Operations Report (GIOR) reported in early January that at least one US Congressman and the Attorney General of Texas were promoting the conspiracy theory that Antifa supporters were involved in the violent demonstrations at the US capitol building. We also reported in January on how the conspiracy theory known as QAnon helped to influence those same events.
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