Twitter Spreads Paid US Gov’t Propaganda While Falsely Claiming it Bans State Media Ads

by | Aug 14, 2020 | Headline News | 4 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    This article was originally published by Ben Norton at The Ron Paul Institue for Peace and Prosperity. Reprinted with permission from The Grayzone.

    Twitter has demonstrated a clear, consistent bias in favor of the US government and its geopolitical interests. The social media giant has also repeatedly lied about its policies on state-backed media outlets.

    Twitter unveiled a new feature on August 6 that labels government-affiliated media on the platform. Users immediately pointed out the social network’s double standards: Chinese and Russian state-backed media have been designated, but not state-backed media outlets funded by Western governments.

    Twitter Support claimed it decided to start labeling government-affiliated accounts from the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council: the US, UK, France, Russia, and China. Oddly, state-funded media outlets from the first three NATO countries have not been labeled.

    The lies flow from there. When it announced this new policy, Twitter Support claimed, “For clarity: we don’t let state-affiliated media accounts advertise on Twitter.”

    This is categorically false.

    Twitter hosts a web page called the “Ads Transparency Center,” where it publicly discloses all of the paid advertisements, known as “sponsored tweets,” that the website puts into users’ feeds.

    A search in the Ads Transparency Center for the official, verified Twitter account of the US government’s Voice of America, and specifically its Persian-language arm VOA Farsi, shows that the state-affiliated media outlet had paid Twitter to publish dozens of ads just in the first week of August.


    That means that a US state-affiliated media outlet published more than 60 individual ads on Twitter in a mere seven days – the same week when Twitter reaffirmed its ban on ads from state-affiliated media outlets.

    Many of these ads quoted speeches from President Donald Trump and Secretary of State and former CIA Director Mike Pompeo. Others spread fears about coronavirus in Iran and called for removing the Iranian government.


    Voice of America (VOA) is a US government propaganda outlet. This is indisputable. Even the History Channel, in an article on the launching of Voice of America in 1947, acknowledged that the “VOA effort was an important part of America’s propaganda campaign against the Soviet Union during the Cold War.”

    And of the state propaganda organs funded by the US government, VOA Persian is the most extreme. It is a weapon of information warfare aimed directly at the Iranian government.

    The former senior managing editor of VOA Persian described the outlet as “a mouthpiece of Trump — only Trump and nothing but Trump.” The former executive editor added that the US government-funded network just publishes “blatant propaganda,” with “no objectivity or factuality.”

    Twitter, however, apparently sees no problem with allowing this Washington propaganda organ to spit out constant disinformation – and the company profits handsomely from its anti-Iran ads.

    US Agency for Global Media and CIA’s global propaganda network

    Western government-backed information warriors reacted to Twitter’s double standard on the labeling of state-affiliated media outlets with glee, insisting that Voice of America was somehow “independent” of the US government which oversees and bankrolls it.

    In reality, Voice of America falls under the jurisdiction of the US Agency for Global Media (USAGM). This is a rebranding of the US government’s Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG).

    USAGM states very clearly on its website that its first goal is to “Be consistent with the broad foreign policy objectives of the United States.” In other words, USAGM is a soft-power arm of the US government, along with all of its constituent platforms, including Voice of America, Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty, and Radio Free Asia.

    USAGM adds that some of its top broadcasting principles are, “Clear and effective presentation of the policies, including editorials, broadcast by the Voice of America, which present the views of the United States Government and responsible discussion and opinion on those policies,” as well as, “The capability to provide a surge capacity to support United States foreign policy objectives during crises abroad.”

    Radio Free Europe and Radio Free Asia were created as CIA fronts to spread disinformation targeting the Soviet Union and communist China, in hopes of destabilizing and ultimately overthrowing their governments.

    The New York Times acknowledged this in a 1977 report, referring to them as instruments in a “Worldwide Propaganda Network Built by the CIA.”

    Journalist Yasha Levine has documented the CIA’s role in setting up these US government propaganda organs, noting that Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty had originally even been named Radio Liberation from Bolshevism.

    Twitter’s work with Western governments

    The Grayzone has extensively documented Twitter’s censorship of accounts in countries Washington has targeted for regime change.

    Thousands of people, including journalists, activists, and civilians who are unaffiliated with their governments, in Venezuela, Iran, Syria, Russia, China, and beyond have had their profiles suspended or restricted by the social media giant.

    This is part of a larger context of Big Tech corporations silencing voices, and even entire media outlets, that are critical of US foreign policy, under pressure by the US government.

    When Twitter first announced, in August 2019, that it would ban advertising from state-affiliated media outlets, The Grayzone noted that the social media corporation was working with hawkish organizations funded by the US government and its European allies.

    Among the so-called NGOs that Twitter chose to rely on to define “state-controlled media” was ironically Freedom House, a right-wing lobby group that is itself bankrolled by US government grants, and which produces reports whitewashing Washington-backed dictatorships while demonizing foreign adversaries.

    Twitter’s links to Western governments go even deeper. In 2019, Middle East Eye revealed that the top Twitter executive who edits Middle East-related content on the platform also works for the UK military’s psychological warfare unit.

    This senior Twitter executive, Gordon MacMillan, serves in the British army’s 77th Brigade, which uses social media networks and the internet to wage what its officials openly call “information warfare.”

    By allowing US government propaganda organs to publish constant paid ads while hiring British psy-ops soldiers, Twitter has been effectively transformed into an arm of Western state media – but without the warning label.


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      1. Obviously, the U.K. and Israel have overtly interfered in our elections in unprecedented terms with the Steele dossier, AIPAC, Jstreet, and Netnenyahu speaking on the House floor against the JCPOA to congress.

        Can’t deny the obvious!

        Can’t help but point out the hypocrisy of the attempt to appoint Juan Guaido, support Bolsanaro, and many others!

        This is pathetic!

        Maybe if the U.S. media wasn’t so full of shit all of the time, people would not even bother reading news from other countries in the first place!

        Never mind that they have no hearts!

        Andrea Iravani

      2. Truth is the biggest casualty of our age. The concept of truth is a manipulated tool of those who rule. It is no longer objective, it is now subjective. Biden did not make a mistake when he said “we” (that is, the ruling class) prefer truth over facts.
        Truth can be Reinterpreted, where for example only powerful entities can decide what truth is, to use “truth” to increase their hold on power. Or, it can be Redefined, such as in changing the meaning of what the Bill of Rights declare, for the purposes of diminishing our rights. Truth must be Reinvented, so that it no longer resembles reality, usually it is a big lie with a little truth mixed in to appear valid, so that something is seen or understood by people as the “rulers” intend. Or it can just be hidden, so that the people never know the truth. After all, knowledge is power. Concrete facts however, are not so easily manipulated, not so easy to dispute, not as easy to hide. Yes, the State and officialdom prefers “truth” over facts.
        To abuse the truth, it is implicitly understood one must be completely amoral. The amoral are indifferent to honesty, morality, and decency, these are concepts to be manipulated for personal gain. The question of right or wrong is irrelevant. Being amoral does not play out in speech only, but also in thought, deed, and desire.
        Look how corrupt and utterly base the “ruling class” is. The literally unending morally gross scandals, the illegitimate grabs for more and more power, the willingness to fulfill personal desires and agendas regardless of the consequences others may have to pay. They see themselves as superior to the citizens even as they gloat in their wretchedness. They see their vile nature as a personal asset. And they truly despise decent people, seeing people as nothing more than managed disposable resources.
        Those who manage to maintain a “clean image” are little better. They love their power, position, and privilege. They are merely more accomplished in the art of hypocrisy and fraud. For example, they tout their record in a misleading way the good they may do, but feed without being sated at the lobbyist’s table. Those with money and power have instant access, and those who don’t – just get in line and vote.
        Another grievous example is the two-tier system of justice in this country. Why won’t our glorious politicians who profess to act solely on behalf of the people fix this g*dd*m problem?! They won’t, because is serves their purposes. Scandal after endless scandal come to light everyday, many are the most serious crimes and felonies against the people and the country, yet nothing happens. But if you fail to pay your taxes you are going to jail.
        For all the corruption to exist, for all the abuse of power to exist, for everything to be as it is now, the truth must be destroyed. The concept of truth must be altered from a common virtue to a lie. The perverseness is the State and their minions in officialdom demand exceptions of honesty and decency and real truth for themselves, but without exception demand these from the people.

      3. Youtube will be deleting videos that they think have been hacked and deleting videos instructing people on how to make voting lines longer which makes it harder for people to vote.

        Six foot distancing definitely increases the length of the line making it harder for the frail and disabled to vote. That is just reality. Guess that the geniuses at Youtube haven’t quite figured that out yet ! It really makes you wonder if they simply do not have brains, or, if they think that they are the only ones that do!

        Andrea Iravani

      4. The piracy of the Trump administration of the four Oil tankers heading to Venezuela containing Iranian oil, seized by pirates on the grounds that Iran is econmically black-listed could start a war. China is now protecting Iran militarily. Apparently the Trump administration is somehow under the misconception that Venezuela is legally under the jurasdiction of the United States, in which Venezuela must honor all U.S. policies, including who its enemies and president are.

        Trump could not have made more stupid mistakes with what he has done to Iran and Venezuela. It really would not be possible.

        Andrea Iravani

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