Twitter Files 7: US Intelligence Ran the Laptop Story, Controlled Media


Michael Shellenberger is reporting Twitter Files #7. It’s not on a thread reader yet. The documents point to the intelligence community manipulating news and social media companies to discredit leaker information about Hunter Biden before and after it was published.

I left out the documentation, so you can understand what went on. The bottom line is the intelligence agencies ran the Hunter Laptop story with lies.

… we present evidence pointing to an organized effort by representatives of the intelligence community (IC), aimed at senior executives at the news and social media companies, to discredit leaked information about Hunter Biden before and after it was published.

Shellenberger reviews the history of Mac Issac, the computer store owner, who took ownership of the Hunter Biden laptop when Hunter didn’t return to pick it up.

On Dec 9, 2019, the FBI issued a subpoena for and took Hunter Biden’s laptop.

The NY Post published the story on October 14, 2020. Every single fact in it is accurate.

By Aug 2020, Mac Isaac still had not heard back from the FBI, even though he had discovered evidence of criminal activity. And so he emails Rudy Giuliani, who was under FBI surveillance at the time. In early Oct, Giuliani gave it to @nypost.

Shortly before 7 pm ET on October 13, Hunter Biden’s lawyer, George Mesires, emails JP Mac Isaac. Hunter and Mesires had just learned from the New York Post that its story about the laptop would be published the next day.

At 9:22 pm ET (6:22 PT), FBI Special Agent Elvis Chan sends 10 documents to Twitter’s then-Head of Site Integrity, Yoel Roth, through Teleporter, a one-way communications channel from the FBI to Twitter.

The next day, October 14, 2020, The New York Post runs its explosive story revealing the business dealings of President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter. Every single fact in it was accurate.

And yet, within hours, Twitter and other social media companies censor the NY Post article, preventing it from spreading and, more importantly, undermining its credibility in the minds of many Americans…

… the debate inside Twitter over its decision to censor a wholly accurate article. Since then, we have discovered new info that points to an organized effort by the intel community to influence Twitter & other platforms.

During all of 2020, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies repeatedly primed Yoel Roth to dismiss reports of Hunter Biden’s laptop as a Russian “hack and leak” operation. This is from a sworn declaration by Roth given in December 2020.

FBI agent Elvis Chan in Nov. 2020, admitted there was no new information indicating a hack by Russians.

Indeed, very little Russian activity was reported.

Yoel Roth pushed back on the FBI and their Russia tale several times.

Time and again, the FBI asks Twitter for evidence of foreign influence & Twitter responds that they aren’t finding anything worth reporting. Twitter found nothing.

Then, in July 2020, the FBI’s Elvis Chan arranges for temporary Top Secret security clearances for Twitter executives so that the FBI can share information about threats to the upcoming elections.

On August 11, 2020, the FBI’s Chan shared information with Twitter’s Roth relating to the Russian hacking organization, APT28, through the FBI’s secure, one-way communications channel, Teleporter.

In Aug, 2020, FBI’s Chan asks Twitter: does anyone there have top secret clearance? When someone mentions Jim Baker, Chan responds, “I don’t know how I forgot him” — an odd claim, given Chan’s job is to monitor Twitter, not to mention that they worked together at the FBI.

Who is Jim Baker? He’s the former general counsel of the FBI (2014-18) & one of the most powerful men in the U.S. intel community. Baker has moved in and out of government for 30 years, serving stints at CNN, Bridgewater (a $140 billion asset management firm), and Brookings

As general counsel of the FBI, Baker played a central role in making the case internally for an investigation of Donald Trump.

Baker wasn’t the only senior FBI exec. involved in the Trump investigation to go to Twitter. Dawn Burton, the former dep. chief of staff to FBI head James Comey, who initiated the investigation of Trump, joined Twitter in 2019 as director of the strategy.

As of 2020, there were so many former FBI employees — “Bu alumni” — working at Twitter that they had created their own private Slack channel and a crib sheet to onboard new FBI arrivals.

This is especially interesting because it ties the far-left Aspen Institute and a George Soros-funded newspaper called First Draft News. Claire Wardle of the now-defunct First Draft News attended the meeting to shut down the Hunter Biden laptop story. It’s particularly concerning since George Soros is buying up newspapers and conservative Spanish radio stations.

Efforts continued to influence Twitter’s, Yoel Roth. In Sept 2020, Roth participated in an Aspen Institute “tabletop exercise” on a potential “Hack-and-Dump” operation relating to Hunter Biden The goal was to shape how the media covered it — and how social media carried it.

The organizer was Vivian Schiller, the fmr CEO of NPR, fmr head of news at Twitter; fmr Gen. mgr of the NY Times; fmr Chief Digital Officer of NBC News Attendees included Meta/FB’s head of security policy and the top nat. sec. reporters for @nytimes @wapo and others

By mid-Sept, 2020, Chan & Roth had set up an encrypted messaging network so employees from the FBI & Twitter could communicate. They also agree to create a “virtual war room” for “all the [Internet] industry plus FBI and ODNI” [Office of the Director of National Intelligence].

Then, on Sept 15, 2020, the FBI’s Laura Dehmlow, who heads up the Foreign Influence Task Force, and Elvis Chan, requested to give a classified briefing for Jim Baker without any other Twitter staff, such as Yoel Roth, present.

On Oct 14, shortly after  @NYPost publishes its Hunter Biden laptop story, Roth says, “it isn’t clearly violative of our Hacked Materials Policy, nor is it clearly in violation of anything else,” but adds, “this feels a lot like a somewhat subtle leak operation.”

In response to Roth, Baker repeatedly insists that the Hunter Biden materials were either faked, hacked, or both, and a violation of Twitter policy. Baker does so over email, and in a Google doc, on October 14 and 15.

And yet it’s inconceivable Baker believed the Hunter Biden emails were either fake or hacked. The @nypost had included a picture of the receipt signed by Hunter Biden, and an FBI subpoena showed that the agency had taken possession of the laptop in December 2019.

By 10 am, Twitter execs had bought into a wild hack-and-dump story “The suggestion from experts – which rings true – is there was a hack that happened separately, and they loaded the hacked materials on the laptop that magically appeared at a repair shop in Delaware.”

At 3:38 pm that same day, October 14, Baker arranges a phone conversation with Matthew J. Perry in the Office of the General Counsel of the FBI.

The influence operation persuaded Twitter execs that the Hunter Biden laptop did *not* come from a whistleblower. One linked to a Hill article, based on a WaPo article, from Oct 15, which falsely suggested that Giuliani’s leak of the laptop had something to do with Russia.

There is evidence that FBI agents have warned elected officials of foreign influence with the primary goal of leaking the information to the news media. This is a political dirty trick used to create the perception of impropriety.

In 2020, the FBI gave a briefing to Senator Grassley and Johnson, claiming evidence of “Russian interference” in their investigation of Hunter Biden. The briefing angered the Senators, who said it was done to discredit their investigation.

“The unnecessary FBI briefing provided the Democrats and liberal media the vehicle to spread their false narrative that our work advanced Russian disinformation.”

Notably, then-FBI General Counsel Jim Baker was investigated *twice,* in 2017 and 2019 for leaking information to the news media. “You’re saying he’s under criminal investigation? That’s why you’re not letting him answer?” Meadows asked. “Yes”

In the end, the FBI’s influence campaign aimed at executives at news media, Twitter, & other social media companies worked: they censored & discredited the Hunter Biden laptop story. By Dec. 2020, Baker and his colleagues even sent a note of thanks to the FBI for its work.

In the end, the FBI’s influence campaign aimed at executives at news media, Twitter, & other social media companies worked: they censored & discredited the Hunter Biden laptop story. By Dec. 2020, Baker and his colleagues even sent a note of thanks to the FBI for its work.

And the pressure from the FBI on social media platforms continues In Aug 2022, Twitter execs prepared for a meeting with the FBI, whose goal was “to convince us to produce on more FBI EDRs” EDRs are an “emergency disclosure request,” a warrantless search.

In response to the Twitter Files revelation of high-level FBI agents at Twitter, @Jim_Jordan

said, “I have concerns about whether the government was running a misinformation operation on We the People.”

Anyone who reads the Twitter Files, regardless of their political orientation, should share those concerns. /END

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