The Intercept: “HOW COVERT AGENTS INFILTRATE THE INTERNET TO MANIPULATE, DECEIVE, AND DESTROY REPUTATIONS”

The Intercept writes:

“Over the last several weeks, I worked with NBC News to publish a series of articles about “dirty trick” tactics used by GCHQ’s previously secret unit, JTRIG (Joint Threat Research Intelligence Group). These were based on four classified GCHQ documents presented to the NSA and the other three partners in the English-speaking “Five Eyes” alliance. Today, we at the Intercept are publishing another new JTRIG document, in full, entitled “The Art of Deception: Training for Online Covert Operations.””

“By publishing these stories one by one, our NBC reporting highlighted some of the key, discrete revelations: the monitoring of YouTube and Blogger, the targeting of Anonymous with the very same DDoS attacks they accuse “hacktivists” of using, the use of “honey traps” (luring people into compromising situations using sex) and destructive viruses. But, here, I want to focus and elaborate on the overarching point revealed by all of these documents: namely, that these agencies are attempting to control, infiltrate, manipulate, and warp online discourse, and in doing so, are compromising the integrity of the internet itself.”

“Among the core self-identified purposes of JTRIG are two tactics: (1) to inject all sorts of false material onto the internet in order to destroy the reputation of its targets; and (2) to use social sciences and other techniques to manipulate online discourse and activism to generate outcomes it considers desirable. To see how extremist these programs are, just consider the tactics they boast of using to achieve those ends: “false flag operations” (posting material to the internet and falsely attributing it to someone else), fake victim blog posts (pretending to be a victim of the individual whose reputation they want to destroy), and posting “negative information” on various forums. …” (…)

“… In fact, the discussion of many of these techniques occurs in the context of using them in lieu of “traditional law enforcement” against people suspected (but not charged or convicted) of ordinary crimes or, more broadly still, “hacktivism”, meaning those who use online protest activity for political ends.” (…)

“Government plans to monitor and influence internet communications, and covertly infiltrate online communities in order to sow dissension and disseminate false information, have long been the source of speculation. Harvard Law Professor Cass Sunstein, a close Obama adviser and the White House’s former head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, wrote a controversial paper in 2008 proposing that the US government employ teams of covert agents and pseudo-”independent” advocates to “cognitively infiltrate” online groups and websites, as well as other activist groups.”

“Sunstein also proposed sending covert agents into “chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups” which spread what he views as false and damaging “conspiracy theories” about the government. Ironically, the very same Sunstein was recently named by Obama to serve as a member of the NSA review panel created by the White House, one that – while disputing key NSA claims – proceeded to propose many cosmetic reforms to the agency’s powers (most of which were ignored by the President who appointed them).”

“But these GCHQ documents are the first to prove that a major western government is using some of the most controversial techniques to disseminate deception online and harm the reputations of targets. Under the tactics they use, the state is deliberately spreading lies on the internet about whichever individuals it targets, including the use of what GCHQ itself calls “false flag operations” and emails to people’s families and friends. Who would possibly trust a government to exercise these powers at all, let alone do so in secret, with virtually no oversight, and outside of any cognizable legal framework?”

The above tactics are not surprising. CIA engaged in torture. Law enforcement attracts high-functioning psychopaths. They are just smart sick thugs in uniform or civilian clothes, defending the facade of democracy while protecting the global corporatist elite.

Australia’s government is not even hiding its online manipulation.

It’s bad zoology to assume that sociopaths and naive idealists in the intelligence community are playing by the rules. The psychos lie, cheat and steal to get power. Idealistic crusaders in the IC manipulate others because they sincerely believe that lies and deception are necessary in order to protect democracy.

War is always dirty, digital reputation counts for nothing in the jungle, adapt offline and get used to it.

It’s fascinating that the above article from The Intercept will serve the interests of the IC, because it will contribute to making left- and rightwing dissidents so paranoid when being online that many radicals will either self-censor when using social media like Gab or they will suspect that anybody saying anything “extreme” is maybe working for the IC.

Gab users are worried about “fedposting”. Ironic if they too start to self-censor. Stand up and fight, but do it in a smart way. Churchill promised tears, not beers. Freedom is not an easy path of non-sacrifice. Freedom is not duck and cover from the FBI.

The above is true even if I had worked for the FBI, for MSS or for FSB, for all of them combined and/or for Martian intelligence.

When common people – the sheep, “the silent majority” or 80 percenters – listen to Snowden they don’t rebel against the IC. They instead notice that the IC is much more powerful than Snowden hiding in Russia. They draw the selfish conclusion: I better not upset the IC or else they will go through my emails and use it against me, perhaps even fabricate evidence to ruin my reputation. The herd always follow the alpha (fe)males. That’s biology.

Often it’s only brave people like Snowden and outcasts like me who are willing to put their reputation on the line when fighting the system. Common people are so worried about their precious reputation that the liberal Jon Ronson wrote a book about liberals’ online bullying: So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed. The secret to being shameless is simple in theory. Just let go of the desire to influence people. If you are a young man let go of the wish to impress a beautiful woman. (That’s not easy, but it gets easier when you are too old to attract pretty 25-year-old females.) Then you will basically have no need to check what people are saying about you online. If I remember correctly, Schopenhauer once wrote: if you knew what your friends said about you behind your back you would have no friends left. We humans are funny and pathetic creatures, so it’s easy to mock each one of us. Online bullies love to step on others, so avoid that crowd like you avoid a bad neighborhood. Drop corporate social media.

Do you think Bush, Biden, Trump, Xi or Putin care about what millions of people are saying about them online? They are killers. Their skin so thick that they don’t need a spine. They are too busy wielding power, they don’t have time to read millions of negative social media messages about their many flaws. They simply ignore the daily torrent of negative feedback (as long as it’s not presented in The Washington Post or The New York Times).

Maybe the IC has seen to it that drone-surveillance.info (DSI) is shadow banned, but I’m happy with having only 0-10 daily visitors, because I’ve realized that one can’t use the Internet to really “change the system”. I never believed in the idea that social media was a force for good during the Arab Spring. Alternative social media like Gab turned out to be no land for old retired militant activists. Not surprisingly since the Internet was to a large degree created by the military. Using the infrastructure of the system to dismantle the system is usually not a good idea.

DSI from my viewpoint is therefore entertainment primarily, an alternative to woke/libertine movies, tv-series and computer games. Being a nerd I enter hyper-focus when writing about adrenaline-inducing topics. This hyper-focus takes attention away from the discomfort of narcolepsy. Since I enjoy the process of writing I basically don’t care if many or few people read it. Maybe all my 0-10 daily visitors are just bots from the IC. Who cares? I don’t.

And now to something completely different.

Bloomberg:

Polygraph Expert Shows How to Beat a Lie Detector Test

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