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How Texas Sucessionists Got Punked By the Russians

17 Oct

While Russian spies certainly  put up fake BLM sites and material on on Facebook, radicalizing BLM was neither the primary or secondary target.

What the Russians were really doing is using a counterintelligence method of creating radical BLM sites to validate propaganda to their compliant white conservative, and Trump racist whores.

The Russians couldn’t really find any credible information of BLM encouraging members to kill Cops, or any radical conspiracy to commit violence…So they created their own to feed to the completely malleable, punked by their own racism, white right.

There efforts are so successful, they drew in and were able to manipulate hundreds of thousands of white conservative, and created utterly fabricated mems which have been adopted as “truth” among the Chumph faithful.

With the Chumph steadfastly protecting his Russian masters from righteous retribution, the Russians have had free reign to damage and destroy American Institutions, foment discontent, and to further the Chumph’s agenda.

These stupid, white right treasonous bastards actually travelled to Russia for commie help in destroying America. These people aren’t in any way Patriots…They are treasonous scum.

Shortly after the Chumph is removed by the excruciatingly slow legal process…I hope some of these folks get to pay for that criminally.

How the Russians pretended to be Texans — and Texans believed them

 

In early 2016, while researching some of the most popular U.S. secession groups online, I stumbled across one of the Russian-controlled Facebook accounts that were then pulling in Americans by the thousands.

At the time, I was writing on Russia’s relationship with American secessionistsfrom Texas, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. These were people who had hitched flights to Moscow to swap tactics, to offer advice and to find support. They had found succor in the shadow of the Kremlin.

That was how I eventually found my way to the “Heart of Texas” Facebook page (and its @itstimetosecede Twitter feed as well). Heart of Texas soon grew into the most popular Texas secession page on Facebook — one that, at one point in 2016, boasted more followers than the official Texas Democrat and Republican Facebook pages combined. By the time Facebook took the page down recently, it had a quarter of a million followers.

The page started slowly — just a few posts per week. Unlike other secession sites I’d come across, this one never carried any contact information, never identified any of individuals behind the curtain. Even as it grew, there was nothing to locate it in Texas — or anywhere else, for that matter. It was hard to escape the suspicion that there might be Russian involvement here as well.

There were other oddities about the site. Its organizers had a strangely one-dimensional idea of its subject. They seemed to think, for example, that Texans drank Dr. Pepper at all hours: while driving their giant trucks, while flying their Confederate battle flags, while griping about Yankees and liberals and vegetarians.

But Heart of Texas, sadly, was no joke. At one point the page’s organizers even managed to stir up its followers into staging an armed, anti-Islamic protest in Houston. As gradually became clear, this was part of a broader strategy. The sponsors of the page were keen to exacerbate America’s own internal divisions. At certain moments they lent support to Black Lives Matter, while in others they would play to the latent (or obvious) racism of Donald Trump’s base.

How Twitter was/is used –

 

By the summer of 2016, other themes began to emerge. Posts began to follow a perceptibly hard-right course, stressing Texas’s status as a “Christian state,” or touting the Second Amendment as a “symbol of freedom … so we would forever be free from any tyranny.” Some of the page’s contributors talked about the need to “keep Texas Texan,” whatever that meant. There was also a generous dollop of conspiracy theory. There were posts about the allegedly unnatural death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia and the supposed federal invasion orders behind the Jade Helm military exercise. Fake Founding Father quotes mingled with anti-Muslim screeds and paeans to Sam Houston. And the number of followers steadily crept into the hundreds of thousands.

How Russian Spies used Bots to feed fake news into white-wing press

Though the site’s authors understood their audience well, there was something off about their writing. The page’s “About” section proclaimed that “Texas’s the land protected by Lord [sic].” Grammatical and spelling glitches were everywhere: “In Love With Texas Shape,” “State Fair of Texas – Has You Already Visited?,” “Always Be Ready for a Texas Size,” “No Hypoclintos in the God Blessed Texas.” (Or take this caption for a photo of country music star George Strait: “Life is not breaths you take, but the moments that take your breth [sic] away.”) Yet the typos never seemed to raise any suspicions in readers’ minds.

Even the page’s calls for an early November protest across the state – part pro-secession, part anti-Clinton — were garbled. One post declared that “we are free citizens of Texas and we’ve had enough of this cheap show on the screen.” The site called on those who showed up to “make photos.”

Heart of Texas chugged on after the election, bringing in tens of thousands of new followers in 2017 who were unbothered by its mangled English, its rank nativism and its calls to break up the United States.

And then, in August, it was gone. Just like that, the most popular Texas secession page on Facebook was revealed to be a Russian front, operated by the notorious Internet Research Agency, with Facebook removing all of the posts from public view. (It’s worth noting that another Instagram accountstarted posting Heart of Texas material as soon as the original Facebook page was taken down.)

Despite its claims of transparency, Facebook has effectively prevented the public from examining these posts and these pages. So far Heart of Texas remains the only example of a Russian account that I and other researchers managed to study in detail before Facebook pulled the rug out from underneath it.

We know that the Russians behind these sites played all of their readers, and especially those who showed up at its protests in places like Twin Falls and Fort Myers and Houston, for fools. Considering that the number of their combined followers ranged into the millions — with some estimates placing total views potentially in the billions — they’re probably right.

The creators of Heart of Texas not only targeted the sociopolitical tensions within the United States. They also exploited our gullibility, which turned out to be far greater than I could have ever imagined. And by assisting them in this massive lie, Facebook has enabled one of the greatest frauds in recent American history.

An explanation of the Russian strategy –

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3 responses to “How Texas Sucessionists Got Punked By the Russians

  1. CNu

    October 17, 2017 at 10:53 AM

    lol, the takeaway from all this is not how much smarter the Russians are in utilizing asymmetric tools at their disposal, all that’s probably just a lot of “fake news” and whooey in any event- but instead just how badly you all suck!!!

    The fact that people were/are desperate for any solution other than what you all embody is the important takeaway. Degenerate and profligate geriatric losers of the 2016 election, still urgently and desperately fetching around for excuses need to look directly in the mirror and accept the hard cold truth that you all gotta go, gotta go, gotta go!!!!

    You muhukkas might just as well be Harvey Weinstein nekkid and looking at himself in the mirror this morning….,

    Like

     
    • btx3

      October 17, 2017 at 11:26 AM

      “lol, the takeaway from all this is not how much smarter the Russians are in utilizing asymmetric tools at their disposal, all that’s probably just a lot of “fake news” and whooey in any event- but instead just how badly you all suck!!!”

      You let one of your kids write that, or did it come from Sesame Street Kremlin central?

      We fuckin’ well understad it – we use the same damn tools to sell you that “soap on a rope” you use every single day. And you eat it up.

      If you want to take down Mr Putin and Russia – it ain’t that hard. The problem is the gub’ment can’t do it without a couple of things happening.

      First, the traitor in charge needs to go down – as he has issued orders protecting his butt-buddy Putin.

      Second, the Gub’ment needs to hire it’s group of “outside consultants” who do the isht that ain’t quite legal for their employees to do.

      Lastly, a clear set of objectives, allowing the use of all assets, government and civilian needs to be established. Ergo is the effort to destabilize their government, take down Putin, take out their military and/or infrastructure, and/or to financially break Mr Putin or the country.

      If that happens…Suggest you by some steel underpants, as you are going to need them.

      Like

       
      • CNu

        October 17, 2017 at 11:39 AM

        If you want to take down Mr Putin and Russia – it ain’t that hard

        I don’t. But I’d like to see all the grotesque status quo beltway vermin – looking like Harvey in all his nekkid glory – exterminated in droves.

        Like

         

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