An anti-Trump Democratic-aligned political action committee advised by retired Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal is planning to deploy an information warfare tool that reportedly received initial funding from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the Pentagon’s secretive research arm — transforming technology originally envisioned as a way to fight ISIS propaganda into a campaign platform to benefit Joe Biden.
The Washington Post first reported that the initiative, called Defeat Disinfo, will utilize “artificial intelligence and network analysis to map discussion of the president’s claims on social media,” and then attempt to “intervene” by “identifying the most popular counter-narratives and boosting them through a network of more than 3.4 million influencers across the country — in some cases paying users with large followings to take sides against the president.”
Social media guru Curtis Hougland is heading up Defeat Disinfo, and he said he received the funding from DARPA when his work was “part of an effort to combat extremism overseas.”
The head of the Joe Biden transition team for the US Agency for Global Media, Richard Stengel, has branded himself the “chief propagandist,” urged the government to use propaganda against its “own population,” and called to “rethink” the First Amendment.
Richard Stengel, the top state media appointee for US President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team, has enthusiastically defended the use of propaganda against Americans.
“My old job at the State Department was what people used to joke as the chief propagandist,” Stengel said in 2018. “I’m not against propaganda. Every country does it, and they have to do it to their own population. And I don’t necessarily think it’s that awful.”
There have been a lot of rumors and allegations against what “Mockingbird” actually was, but it appears that quite possibly, there were two project names. One has been confirmed while the other remains elusive (if real at all).
PROJECT Mockingbird was a wiretapping operation initiated by President John F. Kennedy to identify the sources of government leaks by eavesdropping on the communications of journalists.
This is the program mentioned in the CIA records below, and The Black Vault also added records from the Gerald Ford Presidential Library on the same.
OPERATION Mockingbird was a alleged secret campaign by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to influence media. Begun in the 1950s, it was said to be initially organized by Cord Meyer and Allen W. Dulles, it was later led by Frank Wisner after Dulles became the head of the CIA.
The organization recruited leading American journalists into a network to help present the CIA’s views, and funded some student and cultural organizations, and magazines as fronts. As it developed, it also worked to influence foreign media and political campaigns, in addition to activities by other operating units of the CIA.