Professional agitators

I work in security. Part of my job is to see the world a little different from most people. I review a lot of material with a different view that most people and some of it is not available to the general public (unless you want to spend a lot of money).

The following is an alternate, and I believe more accurate, view on the state of politics in our country:

Elena Alekseevna Khusyaynova is alleged in the indictment to have participated in a conspiracy to “sow discord in the U.S. political system and to undermine faith in our democratic institutions.

The government says that the conspiracy is also part of a 2016 influence operation that dates back to at least May 2014.

Forty-four-year-old Khusyaynova, of St. Petersburg, was the chief accountant of “Project Lakhta,” an effort funded by Russian oligarch Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin and two companies he controls, Concord Management and Consulting LLC, and Concord Catering, the indictment says. Prigozhin is close to Russian President Vladimir Putin and is often referred to as “Putin’s chef.”

Khusyaynova is accused of overseeing a $35 million budget from 2014 to 2018 that covered spending on activists, social media advertising, and promoting news postings on social networks. The Justice Department says that the proposed operating budget for 2018 alone was over $10 million.

Those involved in the conspiracy made extensive efforts to appear to be American political activists, and hide the fact that they were Russian. According to the indictment, the conspiracy “inflamed passions” on topics including immigration, gun control and the Second Amendment, the Confederate flag, race relations, LGBT issues, the Women’s March, and the NFL national anthem controversy.

The conspiracy advised social media writers on how to write for U.S. audiences, suggesting in one instance that people of color who are LGBT are “less sophisticated” than those who are white. “Colored LGBT are less sophisticated than white; therefore, complicated phrases and messages do not work,” the guidance said, according to the indictment. It went on to suggest that infographics “work well among LGBT and their liberal allies,” but not so well with conservatives.

Earlier in the day, in a rare joint statement, the nation’s top law enforcement and intelligence agencies issued a warning against what they described as “ongoing campaigns by Russia, China and other foreign actors, including Iran, to undermine confidence in democratic institutions and influence public sentiment and government policies.”

The old adage, “consider the source”, is good advice. But what if it is extremely difficult to know the source?

A lot of the political tension in our country is not due to citizen advocates of actual extremist positions. It is due to well funded outside agitators.

11 thoughts on “Professional agitators

  1. To seriously undermine our institutions and destabilize our country, the outsiders didn’t actually have to influence our elections or politicians, they just had to make a significant portion of the country THINK they did….. The power of a mob….

  2. “…campaigns by Russia, China and other foreign actors, including Iran…”

    Clearly, someone wants us to hate the Russians, and other foreign actors. So they hire a few said actors to do their agitating. Then, if and when said agitation becomes known, blame the foreign actors. Win win. It’s brilliant.

    We’re so many steps behind the “stupid” and the “ignorant” enemies of liberty that we’ll be discovering, and being shocked, and humbled and embarrassed by, their methods for a thousand years after they’ve achieved their fascistic New World Order.

    Hearing the news this morning, it looks like the Dems, Soros and others have sent themselves a bunch of non-functional package bombs.

    I’ve said many times that it takes a tremendous amount of skill, knowledge, effort and perseverance to build an estate, or an entire, stable and principled civilization. It also requires the passing of knowledge, principles, skills and attitudes from generation to generation, but that it takes relatively little to tear it all down.

    Couple that with our mindset of building, stabilizing and improving things, wherein the “obvious” courses of action are those which tend to result in stability, peace, accomplishment and prosperity. It’s all in the Ten Commandments, but no one wants took THERE anymore.

    We focus so much on our ideals that we cannot fathom the other mindset, which has agitation, separation of the generations, decline, destruction and plunder as it’s aims. Intellectually we might know it exists, but that it could exist on a global scale, with an organized central planning system having its fingers in every society is too much to contemplate.

    Besides all that, we have enough to occupy our attention as it is. Thus we are easily blindsided, over and over again.

    • It is not at all clear this article is proof “someone wants us to hate Russians…”. The available evidence does appear to support the claim one or more Russian citizens worked to cause political strife in our country. Evidence connecting this activity to high level Russian leadership or to others, not related to Russian leadership, is not on clear display. Furthermore if “someone wants us to hate Russians” one would expect there would be little or no attempted to hide this activity. This does not appear to be the case. Proxies and other methods were used to hide the true source of the actors.

  3. One consideration is the massive effort spent by the left, both politicians and their media colleagues, to support this “sow discord, division, and doubt” effort. “Fellow travelers”, indeed.

  4. What I see is that there are a relatively small number of outside agitators, but many on the left who seem to be trying to out-compete each other in how far left they are willing to go. Add to that the capture of the tech corporations and media by the left.

    Just witness the number of extreme leftist ballot initiatives that we will vote on. These are not due to foreign agitators but to our own homegrown leftist leaders. I suspect that many people will vote for them without thinking because ‘everyone knows’ we face multiple emergencies because that is what they are told.

  5. So what was the actual “crime” they supposedly committed? The article seems to indicate they wrote articles and instructed others on how to write articles. That their purpose in writing the articles was “undesirable” would seem to be a poor basis for criminal charges — you know, with the 1st Amendment and all.
    So what am I missing here?

    • I feel the same way. Unless there were direct, demonstrable damages, I don’t see the issue here. We should err on the side of protecting free speech, or else we risk the owner of this blog being prosecuted in the future for promoting “gun violence”.

    • Bob, I think you’re making the mistake of assuming that the Left respects the 1st Amendment. The reality is that they respect it just as little as they respect the 2nd, or 4th, or 5th, or 9th Amendment, or for that matter any other part of the Constitution that in any way stands in the way of their goal of an unlimited government.

      • It’s a mystery why you would think I’m “assuming” anything at all about “the Left”.

    • The criminal complaint is here. She, and others, are claimed to have violated 18 U.S.C. § 371, conspiracy to defraud the United States.

      In section 5:

      The United States of America, through its departments and agencies, regulates the activities of foreign individuals and entities in and affecting the United States in order to prevent, disclose, and counteract improper foreign influence on U.S. elections and on the U.S. political system. U.S. law bans foreign nationals from making certain expenditures or providing things of value for the purpose of influencing federal elections. U.S. law also bars agents of any foreign entity from engaging in political activities within the United States without first registering with the Attorney General.

      See also section 14:

      There is probable cause to believe that, from at least 2014 to the present, KHUSYAYNOVA conspired with persons known and unknown to defraud the United States by impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Election Commission in administering federal requirements for disclosure of foreign involvement in certain domestic activities, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. Among the persons with whom KHUSYAYNOVA conspired are known and unknown employees and associates of Concord and Project Lakhta entities. The Conspiracy had as its objects impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful governmental functions of the United States by dishonest means in order to enable Project Lakhta actors to interfere with U.S. political and electoral processes, including the 2018 U.S. elections.

      There is more but that should be enough to get you started.

      Basically, it is implied the First Amendment doesn’t apply to foreign interests if they use it in a deceptive manner.

      • Thanks for digging that up.
        Still looks like they just published “stuff” that someone didn’t like, albeit with the intention of influencing members of the public. And while they appeared to be deceptive as to who they were, I can’t see how it amounted to “defrauding” the US Government. 18 USC 371 is pretty short and the .gov seems to be stretching the meaning of “defraud” way beyond anything “reasonable.”
        Based on only what I’ve seen so far they’d have a pretty hard time getting a “guilty” vote out of me on a jury.

        A “well educated” citizenry would make the activity that was alleged to take place merely amusing instead of concerning. A government that interfered with a liberty less would make such activity a complete and obvious waste of time. Not that either of those two things are going to happen any time soon.

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