US media is reporting that Russian media outlets have spent more than $146 million on foreign influence operations and propaganda in the US since 2016. According to an OpenSecrets investigation:
October 15, 2021 Russian media outlets reported spending more than $146 million on foreign influence operations and propaganda in the U.S. since 2016, with over $16 million on propaganda targeting the U.S. in 2021, OpenSecrets’ analysis of new Foreign Agents Registration Act records shows. And that’s just the spending that Russian foreign agents have disclosed to the Justice Department under FARA. The U.S. government has identified multiple online media sites that are directed by Russian intelligence services and not disclosed through FARA, spreading disinformation to undermine COVID-19 vaccines produced outside Russia. Social media platforms have also become a breeding ground for even more Russian propaganda campaigns that are often not disclosed in FARA filings.
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In 2021 alone, RIA Novosti and Rossiya Segodnya, Russia’s state-owned news agencies that run the English-language outlets RT and Sputnik, spent together over $16,7 million in the US, according to Foreign Agents Registration Act records.