Merkel faces more Russian disinformation ahead of poll: source

Introduction — Jan 24, 2017

Angela Merkel: the face of a psychopath? Click to enlarge

Angela Merkel: the face of a psychopath? Click to enlarge

First we were told that Russia somehow “interfered” with the November U.S. elections. Now we are being led to believe that they’ve targeted Angela Merkel, just as Hillary Clinton’s 2016 election bid was alleged to have been targeted by a Russian disinformation campaign personally approved by Putin.
Of course no hard evidence was produced to confirm claims of Russian interference and we doubt that it ever will be. That’s beside the point, however, because these claims are being used cloud political debate and provide cover for the elite’s chosen political functionaries. Like Angela Merkel and Hillary Clinton.
More to the point: it’s worth asking ourselves why Russia would target Merkel’s election campaign in the first place? What would Russia have to gain from such a disinformation drive anyway?
After all support for Merkel had already plummeted during last September’s election in Berlin and more recent polls indicate it has fallen even more since. So why would Russia need to have bothered with Angela Merkel when her popularity was already in free fall?
That simple fact alone suggests that the following is corporate media disinformation. It also implies that whoever first conceived this storyline must have thought the average reader easily beguiled.
Add to that the fact that we know next to nothing about East StratCom Task Force, the group making these claims, and there’s good reason to suspect the involvement of European intelligence agencies in this. Ed.

Merkel faces more Russian disinformation ahead of poll: source

AFP — Jan 24, 2017

German Chancellor Angel Merkel will face an even broader Russian disinformation campaign ahead of elections this year, according to EU findings, a source close to the matter said Monday.

The source, who asked not to be identified, told reporters that France and the Netherlands were also likely targets as they too go to the polls with populist, anti-EU figures strongly in the running after Donald Trump’s upset US election victory.

The source said the East StratCom Task Force set up in 2015 to combat a Russian disinformation campaign found Merkel had come under increasing attack last year, especially over her decision to let nearly a million migrants into Germany.

EU foreign affairs head Federica Mogherini formed the group in the fallout from the Ukraine crisis when Moscow manipulated information in the press and over social networks to wrong-foot Kiev and the 28-nation bloc about its intentions.

The team of about 10 experts and Russian-speakers monitors news stories, be it about Ukraine, the migrant crisis or terror attacks in Europe which show Western leaders in a poor light.

It aims to demonstrate that apparently authoritative stories are fake and so counter their impact.

According to a statement on the group’s website, over the past 15 months it found “more than 2,500 examples in 18 languages of stories contradicting publicly available facts.”

“There is no doubt that the pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign is an orchestrated strategy,” the group says on its website in a report released on Thursday.

“The disinformation campaign is a non-military measure for achieving political goals,” it said.