Skip to main content

tv   Heritage Discussion on Russian Influence  CSPAN  August 30, 2018 12:00pm-1:29pm EDT

12:00 pm
>> caller: i find this fascinating. $2.5 billion on incarceration? the first thing i would suggest is take all of the immigrants we have got here from, say, iran or one of those places and get 1 million of them, drop them in the middle of mexico and see how they like it. at that point they will do something about the border as well. we are not the only ones that have a problem. secondly this kind of money being spent for incarceration. why are we incarcerating them? why don't we send them back? spend thatzes me tosecondly amount of money to keep them in jail. guest: the first part of her previouss what the caller asked. it's ab now to a discussion on russia's influence on left-wing causes
12:01 pm
and groups in the united states. it's hosted by the heritage foundation in washington, d.c. live coverage on c-span2. >> the heritage foundation and one of the topics over the past many years is russia's attempt in influencing democracies and policies throughout europe, and in the united states as well. i have been blown away by the way a lot of people have discovered this problem since last election, people who were previously not very interested in the subject, but it is of great importance now that it is here. let's talk about not just how the russians influence the political landscape but how they are trying to boost the americanness in order to attack the american right. that is something you may not have heard that much about in the mainstream media.
12:02 pm
russia's efforts to influence the american election has received massive political and media attention. equally important but much less publicized is russia's interference through the sport of left-wing causes and groups opposing president trump. that russia is supposing -- sorry, supporting american left-wing groups and have a hand in sponsoring others. it does not come as a surprise, those of you who can remember the cold war will remember that is exactly what the soviet union also did, underpinning, for instance, the agreement of stabilizing in which -- campaign against -- [inaudible] disarmament in europe. and, of course, the same thing also went for the american peace movement, also sponsored by the soviet union.
12:03 pm
so there is a continuity of strategy, but the tactics have changed. today's influence operations targeted at the u.s. right include phony facebook groups, twitter accounts, those and other internet phenomenon, russia's influence operations also include support for political and environmental groups. and this information spreads to news outlet and the united states as well as europe. as serious as russia's targeted at the trump administration is, however, it also has profound wider implications for american democratic institutions. today the russians are playing both political sites against each other to great effect. the refusal of democrats to accept the result of the last
12:04 pm
substantial election has been a huge boon magnifying the damage done to americans faith and democratic institutions. russians interference should be a concern to all americans on both sides of the political spectrum. and russia's sponsorship of left-wing causes should be fully exposed. in his wildest dreams, , vladimr putin could not have hoped for a more successful outcome than the explosive political divisions in the united states caused by the last election. today we have had an amazing pl with us. we're going to have, start with brad patty who is senior vice president for research and analysis at the securities study group. an organization that delves into
12:05 pm
disinformation campaigns from various sources, with rush and others, based in arlington. brad spent years as an advisor to the military helping to design operations in afghanistan and many places. he holds a doctorate of philosophy, in philosophy from the university of georgia. next, we'll have boris zilberma zilberman, the deputy director for congressional relations at the foundation for defense of democracy. his previous work was with the american israel public affairs committee. he was born in russia and speaks fluent russian. he holds an ma and global security studies from johns hopkins university. following boris will have stephen blank, a senior fellow
12:06 pm
at the american foreign policy council. he spent 25 years teaching at the u.s. army war college as well as other notable institutions, specializing in russia and russian strategy. he holds a doctorate in russian history from the university of chicago. and our final speaker today will be our very own mike gonzalez who is a senior fellow with the kathryn and shelby cullom davis institute of the heritage foundation. before joining heritage, mike spent 20 years as a journalist mostly for the "wall street journal" and many of those years in europe but also in asia. he also spent time at the state department as a speechwriter, and he writes extensively on a subject of identity politics. he has a new book that is just out, mike, new book? the future to go. okay. relatively --
12:07 pm
[inaudible] he writes for the future, a conservative can break the liberal and ultimately hispanic americans. michael has a bachelors degree in communications from emerson college and an mba from columbia business school. so without further ado, please join and welcoming the panel. [applause] and, , brad, over to you. you can be seated or, to the podium. >> i'm more comfortable standing at the lectern. so i'm going to speak today mostly about the recent history of american counter propaganda against that can keep your tools that tools that you need to deal with the problem that the rest of the panel are going to be focused on. as helle mentioned, the cold war
12:08 pm
era, counter propaganda, is reasonably well-known to the folks here. it was that by the u.s. information office which was a formal government bureaucracy that existed throughout the cold war, but at the end of the cold war the clinton administration decided to dissolve it as part of political peace dividends. the idea of the peace dividend was that we would just not have to fight the cold any war anymore so they could stand on some the things we've been doing all along. this was one of the things we thought we could do without. we would need to contest propaganda anymore because of f the would be a soviet union anymore. so the u.s. information agency run things like voice of america, i believe if you today perhaps, there he is, yes, and they've done this under the authority of the broadcast board of governors which was a quasi-independent organization
12:09 pm
in order to give credibility so it wasn't just another state-run propaganda outfit. it was independent journalists overseeing the production of things but nevertheless, in the interest of counter propaganda. u.s. information was very successful. when it was dissolved a couple of components were kept. one of them is the board of governors and its organization and others were in broadcast information services. the broadcast board of governors went to the state department and the foreign broadcast information service went to the cia. which still exist of the name of the open source. one of the better thinks the cia does. so what when where was the centralized leadership and the ability to organize counter propaganda operation across the government. that seems okay for quite a while, but on 9/11 americans woke up to the shocking
12:10 pm
realization that people all over the world were celebrating these attacks on america and to begin to wonder why. those of you who were old enough will remember there was a lot of discussion, why do they hate us? that was a question. and the answer that the government came to was that there were a lot of people all around the world who were preaching stories about america that were quite hateful. i mean, you know, they needed to be counted in some way. but without the use information agency how would you do that? the problem is that there are a lot of messaging authorities within the u.s. government, the state department does direct government to government diplomacy and also as public diplomacy functions which is a diplomat talking directly to people. the military has a whole lot of different messaging operations not just public affairs. have information operations, psychological operations.
12:11 pm
they can't be targeted by law towards the american people. in addition to this have electronic warfare operations where they can forcibly broadcast in order to get messages into hostile areas, areas where the government is hostile to the population. we do a lot of this. central intelligence agency has political warfare missions that they're able to promulgate information designed to influence political outcomes. homeland security talks to the american people in certain ways about threats that we face. the justice department does. the health department does because sometimes we face biological warfare threats to we need to inform people about that. all of these berries thesis exist in many different places and is not a coordinating authority. that wasn't on 9/11. we try to put all these things
12:12 pm
together and were thinking about what if there's a biological attack-9/11 attack? how do we coordinate all of this is a way that will allow us to respond and also to go out to the world, find the messages that getting people to celebrate things like 9/11 encounter them so people think better of her country. it's a similar problem we face today russian propaganda situation. we need to know what the russians are saying whatever they're saying it. by the way this goes to also china, for iran, for qatar and for a number of other places where engaged in anti-american information operations. we need to find all this to understand and we need to think carefully about how would we counter it. having thought about that we didn't need to be able to tap all of those different messaging authorities which exist in different government bureaucracy under different leadership, and very importantly they have different legal authorities. there are things that, for
12:13 pm
example, military public affairs, they are not allowed to say. as i already mentioned there are things that military information operations are not legally allowed to target american population. if you need to communicate your message in that way to a foreign population it needs to be on the table and you may need to communicate the message to both populations differently. so you need a coordination. after 9/11 the absence of one became a serious issue, and to answer that the military very rapidly stood up what was called the deputy directorate of information operations. this was, at the time posted at that no personal, no chairs, no place to put chairs. it was something is being done on an emergency basis, it's a lot of it was done initially by federal contractors more than it was done by village of personal
12:14 pm
and so they could find and bring them for the people that they needed to do it. they assembled as they begin to put together, they assembled a group called the interagency propaganda panel which was run by ddio and coronation with the state department and the cia. and i work for this organization is why i'm talking about the subject today. the interagency counter propaganda panel tapped the foreign broadcast information, now the open source center, as was looking at all this election the cia was doing about what are people saying all about the world cup radio broadcast, what are they sing in print? where are the stories coming from? then we provide a level of analysis on what were the threats, what with the opportunities, how can use the various different messaging authorities that american government agencies have, and then the interagency counter propaganda and push them out the various agencies to be acted upon. this is a stopgap measure.
12:15 pm
it was something with a together on an emergency basis and work for a little while while the defense science conducted a full study involving industry experts, government experts, veterans of information agency and others. they put out a report in 2004 that made some recommendation. this report still available online if anyone wants to read it. and i do recommend it. i also brought if anyone wants one i have a copy of chapter nine of her grand strategy which runs through all of this history and makes recommendations, so if anyone is interested in that come see me and i will send you a pdf of it. so what the defense science board recommended, a lot of it was really, really strong, why stuff but importance of establishing credibility and credibility matters more than anything else in conducting its operations and, therefore, you need to be transparent, you need to be honest, you need to do
12:16 pm
things that will build your credibility in the community, you want to talk to. they also made one particularly unwise suggestion which was acted upon and derailed moats of its effort which is why we don't have it to rely upon now, that was the ddi l at the pentagon was simply too underpowered to lead this. -- ddio. we need to move it to a place with is at least a four star general or admiral who can take ownership of it they are the only ones who have the push within the military to move this. so the recommended a combatant commander. there are only two combatant commanders that have global responsibilities, silicon and stratcom. special operations. special operation would it make a certain amount of sense because they got the psychological warfare mission since the 1940s. so,, but the special operation committee goes on with back to world war ii.
12:17 pm
-- socom. but, unfortunately, there was concerned because psychological warfare is frightening and it might undermine our credibility of people thought we were intentionally starting from the perspective engaging psychological warfare, they decided to located at the strategic level which as you all know is that the crystal powers out west under the mountain. it's not here in d.c. so as it turns out that was very distant place, those folks engage in the same day-to-day relationships with people here in washington. they don't drop by the state department as often as they might. [inaudible] >> it's all right. [inaudible] no problem. it's russian interference. but anyway, it's a long way away is the point. didn't have the same
12:18 pm
relationships, and ultimately the other thing about stratcom is that people who do that work, are very technically minded. they spent their careers working on things like nuclear weapons. communication is not really what they spent their great doing and they were not really sure quite how to think about or how to take that nation and integrated into what they did. they did their with you. they did an awful job as well as they could but it's not too surprising that it kind of felt by the wayside. and today we are back in the same position that people are saying what do we do about these propaganda operations? where is the coordinating authority? since stratcom did work outcome last year in the ndaa congress relocated these operations to the global engagements of the state department. now, the level of engagement story -- the state department by law has to engage in truthful
12:19 pm
operations, not, they don't necessarily have people who are trained to think about psychological warfare or political influence operations. you might want ideally an organization may be at the -- this is what we need to work with company to support then and what they're doing. it is under the public affairs section and it is tasked with coordinating all of these theories operations. we need to therefore help them to establish the understanding of how to do this and to make sure that access to professionals that they may not have generated internally. so that they can engage in recommendations on the full range of the counter propaganda operations. now, with that said i think i can we take questions now or later?
12:20 pm
very good. all right, very good. if anyone has any questions later, i will be around. [applause] >> -- important work they're doing there and they have the funds now that they have received but have yet to allocate to grantees. so one thing i would urge them to do, especially as we move into the fall come into elections here and in europe, that they start moving, giving these grants out to those that have applied to them for these projects to counter russian disinformation, whether it is here or in europe, which some of the grantees are looking to do. so i'm going to talk mainly
12:21 pm
about russian influence operations on the right, but ass a whole in some of the ways that the use is responding. so russian influence operations, active measures, they are not new. they've been doing this for decades. we are seeing today is really an outgrowth what we've seen from russia for decades. the difference is really a digital tools are using now and the ways that americans now consume information online, through facebook, through twitter, through a more traditional means as well like cable news but the russians are much more effective at using these tools, these new tools for them really, and getting their information really into the bloodstream of american society and i think that's what we really saw in 2016 and what we see again today. if you look at the ads that wile
12:22 pm
run a facebook and other social media accounts, and it runs the gamut and it is really aimed at sowing division amongst americans left, , right, enter right come into left. amongst themselves, on issues come the issues that got probably run the most was on race issues, crime, immigration, all kind of touchstone, touchy political topics and the russians don't have, they are not card-carrying member of the gop or the dnc. it's about us against them, and so when we get into the left-right debate, it really helps them succeed in their aims. in my view. and they are doing things effectively to message the left, message at the right, and you see the reaction report at some
12:23 pm
other campaigns also on anti-fracking campaigns in the united states and europe as well. the russians seem to be behind some of those similarly. they don't have a political lean. lean. they are leaning is how can we create chaos, create outreach in a political system and drive division. i think he said that continue to be played out. and expect to see it continue into the 2018 and the 2020 elections. they are quite effective and when we have -- one thing anybody needs to be fully absorbed by both democrats and republicans and independents id whoever else is that the russians understand our political system and our society much better than i think we anticipated previously. it's a not in soviet times what it was harder to get -- there's been reports they sent out some other operatives to kind of
12:24 pm
conduct recalling, to get a lay of the political land it and are able to they learned and really figure this out. so while some of the images and the ads are using were fairly crude, they understood what they're doing. they really understand, you know, exactly how their operationalizing this information so i think the response in what you are seeing in congress is bipartisan response, a a number of bills t there now. some of the things that can be most effective, the top administration got derided somewhat for how they released all -- mandated by catsa that saw that as an effective way of doing this, is creating a wide list, steering as many folks as possible on this list, creating,
12:25 pm
these folks are now basically pariahs. they should double down a bit. the april 6 sanctions against some of these oligarchs have the largest economic impact on the russian economy that we had seen recently. so the next man should again continue to kind of double down on that strategy of highlighting houthis, who the financiers around the kremlin are and where appropriate, sanctions in. the other item that is floating around and has got a lot of work in the russian economy and i think rightfully so is targeting brushes ability or sovereign debt basically, ability of u.s. persons in this case to invest in russian debt. in the language floating around right now it could be targeting new russian sovereign debt. the financial institutions that could hold russian sovereign debt. while this action takes place it may be devalued.
12:26 pm
why is this important? post-2014 when the post crimea sanctions hit and the economy started going down, oil prices started going down, they really relied on these funds, the ability of westerners to buy up russian debt to basically bail out there economy, developed the cronies under the putin regime when the economy was slipping. again, , it's not fully take it away but if you start to nibble basically and take off their ability to do that in the future, because what are sanctions about? it's not just the punishment but you hope is changing putin's calculus and his decision-making matrix. it's going to be harder for him in an economic downturn or another round of sanctions to
12:27 pm
raise funds to bail out, when the time comes to maybe he will think twice about pushing further in ukraine or continue to evade help the kim regime in north korea if the f8 sanctions and continue to sanction russian entities that are involved in that recently. so how you change, doing some this macro issues be on the designations is important while it's great to see more designations, certainly supportive of that, how to change that calculus, change begin for putin? what we know is putin will continue to aggressively prod and press against the united states, contingent undermined the global order and work with like-minded states whenever and whenever they see it coming in. they do that abroad whenever they see, whenever there's an
12:28 pm
issue that they can exploit in a public sphere, we've seen them dive headfirst doing it. and so expect more of that. and i think the more we get into this kind of red/blue, left-right, however you want to phrase the debate, the more they're able to keep turning this distrust into each other and the political system as a whole, and i think seeing the response from congress of the important but also from kind of the wider response of leadership in the united states. >> thank you, for us. [applause] >> stephen? >> thank thank you, helle. and thank you for inviting me. by 2005 the russian government had concluded its at war with the united states. the defense ministry told the military academy that we are at war with the west. not a shooting war but a
12:29 pm
non-kinetic welcome like the kind that and distribute what george can used to be called political figure that is continue and is not stopped and what's more, russian is following a distinct strategy. when i say that, mr. putin as a strategy i don't mean to say that he is bismarck. that strategy is like any other human document, flawed and also able to take advantage as he often does a tactical opportunities. the fact is if you go back and look what they've been doing for the last 12, 15 years there is a discernible strategy and it involves really the whole of the state, military as well as everything else including information warfare which they record france's perhaps his mot important element of contemporary warfare in the world. they define the different than we do. they see it as not only the kinds of things we've been talking about here but also the cyber strikes against targets come cyber strikes against the democratic party headquarters
12:30 pm
and the clinton campaign, and the same thing is going all over europe and the middle east. rand just released a study about russian operations in turkey,, another one that came up from issue. it's not just us. even and latin america, in europe, the middle east and i suspect they are in africa also. this is an element of a broader strategy of what was called multidimensional -- multiple domain coercion. we are here today talk about the active measures but you need to keep in mind this is part of an ensemble here part of an orchestra if you like. putin is the conductor and the orchestra is one that is playing on all the different sectors, brass, wins, strings, information warfare, energy, finance, military operations and so forth. this is an old story and russia as my colleague support together
12:31 pm
the sars government in 1905 had a 2 million ruble budget for influence operations in the french press because france was the electric the raising a lot of money on the french stock exchange and want to make sure of it but he thought russian was a great investment, although it turns out it wasn't a great investment. the soviets took us to a higher degree. read the two books can you see just how extensive this was on a global level and it has been as my colleagues have said, revived in order to take advantage of the new opportunities in technologies that are out there. all those activities in the soviet time, going back to 1920 were coordinated by what came to be known as the kgb, earlier times. these are the guys who taught putin his business as well as putin. they ran those ops. they taught putin and his generation how to do it.
12:32 pm
and then that legacy has been brought back, or never left. so as i said these measures come exacted measured in warfare are ubiquitous, all over. moreover, we see stuff like this happen in estonia and 2007. georgia 2008, and there's a lot of evidence we see the kinds of networks that of an built in the united states and europe beginning not in 2014 with invasion of crimea but in 2012 when putin comes back to the president and after a rise in moscow. and when he realizes or he decs that the united states is irredeemably hostile and we are even more hostile, hostile to washington as well. tactics of these operations are very clear. my colleagues have said we exploit the ethnic, racial, political and other cleavages in every country. not just the united states. you offer financial incentives to potential supported in this country. we are now learning about
12:33 pm
brexit. errant banks was offered a lucrative contracts with russia in return for its operations to support brexiteer i think we're going to find the same thing here. we know that the trump corporation in new york as a matter of public record, was doing a lot of business with russian money launders and so forth. it's all over the newspapers. it's not a political statement to say this. it goes back years. it's another form of creating financial inducements for people who want to cooperate with russia. you create business connections. financial and political linkages that are transnational, and dependencies. because some of these financial institutions come to depend on russian money. for example, remember i was in abu dhabi at a conference with the russians invaded ukraine and i turned to john roberts, british energy expert ever talked about what is the reaction? they came out with some weasel words about and he said sure, of
12:34 pm
course, the city of london would go broke if they took the money out. you know, you can be -- he talks about fictional terms that we seem this in london and you can see it be he go there, that russian money is very strong entrenched in london. they're making attacks against it now but that's quite late in the game. the russians export political drivers that they subsidize political leaders, parties and beatty. not just here. president of czechoslovakia, the czech republic owes his election to money from -- that's not privately or if it is it was directed by putin to a certain area. they are willing to support any and all forces in the west who are opposed to european integration which the regard as the great geopolitical, taken in its democratic form, and,
12:35 pm
therefore, their opposed to democracy. we've seen this in the european venue, support for brexit, support for the intervention and the dutch referendum, in the catalonia question in spain, in the referendum there. intervention in the french, german, italian elections. subsidizing the austrian coalition members and the italian coalition members. serbia, greece, macedonia and the list is endless and across the we could talk about the new reports about turkey initial. i can tell you there and latin america. four years ago i was at a meeting with treachery tragic l said what can we do about the fact the russians have the first two numbers, rt has diversity numbers in argentina television? i said, there's nothing to do because by law you are prohibited. there are authorities that prevent the military from acting even though it's a warlike
12:36 pm
action. they are all over the place. not just in the united states. but as we've never seen, tremendous value of reporting, the great budget of russian attacks and probes in the united states are directed at not the left-wing with the right wing. the republican party can support the republican party, lobbies that include affiliate with the republican party, nra, prime example, where you read the indictment and you see the trial reports and other reports that come out about this. you see she was trying to infiltrate the nra. she was involved with groups that are close to republican party i consider for the study of the national interest, and she was, other functions as well. well. she's only one person. i can tell you my conservative friends when asked did write articles they complained it but people like patrick began her thinking putin is is great support of christian values. he isn't completely. rush is not particularly christian country and what's more the spectacle of how should
12:37 pm
i say it, repentant kgb operatives becoming fervent christians is more than using. furthermore, the kgb front, and has been for years. anybody who studies this note. moreover, look at the figures on church attendance in russia, they are not very impressive. three to 4%. all the stuff that russia being a christian religious country, it's nice public in but the reality is rather different. however, here we seen all these men at the right. they were to the left like a jill stein window but the photograph of flynn. the one sitting there is a jill stein. i mean, there are democrats will tell you stein may have cost them a lot about industry states, wisconsin, michigan and pennsylvania. i don't know how many she got but it may have had a factor. beyond that we know about flynn,
12:38 pm
we know about manafort's can we know about the nra. we know about the center for the national interest. we know they try to hack into the republican national committee and various senators to attack democratic national eating clinton campaign and then attacked 20-30 state election. that's since 2016. what they're doing it is not a matter of public record but it's clear they're doing it because intelligence communis, and said it's going to be, this is going on already. and as part of the cyber activities they've attacked the american electric grid is if ts is all a matter of public record. i'm not making it a step. it's not personal. what's really at stake is the integrity of the democratic process in the united states and abroad. plain and simple. what are the objectives? fracture domestic cohesion and all these places, not just year. to elect a pro-moscow president. they hated hillary clinton would have you may think of clinton that's clear from the hated her and they felt much more brush --
12:39 pm
for russia. there clearly happened but that's the motive behind all this into a 16 and what it offered to collude with the trump administration as we now know. they want to corrupt and described not only the american democracy both whole idea of democratic l-uppercase-letter liberal governance. they want to force the united states to accept rush as a global equal in a multipolar world which would in the usability to thwart russia's imperial dreams in the former soviet space and our ability to affect what goes on in the russian domestic system because the regard that as the greatest geopolitical threat, not nato. and that would mean an end to democracy promotion all the organizations and activities in this country that are here when we're another to to democracy promotion abroad would fall apart because they would be discredited and underfunded and so on. at the end of the day have a foreign policy that takes its guiding principle from virgil,
12:40 pm
of all places, where he has aptly, i can quote you in the latin, -- if i cannot move heaven, i will raise hell. thank you. [applause] >> obviously for this crowd there is no need for translation. >> we are on tv. >> on producing the three you have been incredibly disciplined to each of you spent exactly ten minister i will try to stick to buy that. one of the great things that speak at heritage always is the level -- which make it specially jimmy who is one of the great writers on this issue bring to light human rights abuses in russia especially the gay community. so i'm glad that you are all here. i'm going to obviously say some of the same things my predecessors have. luckily i have some different examples. yes, putin and equipment are
12:41 pm
equal opportunity offenders. i really do welcome the newfound vehement on the left and the media about russia. i wish we had them around in the '70s and '80s, but it is true that when rush and the criminal what to do right now is just exploit divisions at the don't care whether do due on te left or the right. we have an open system so russian knows exactly what it's doing and it knows it's acting at that time a very high end racial and ethnic anxiety. identity politics has left russia with very gaping holes in our society and divisions that can try to get in there and try to open even further. and so we see this clearly with the pages that facebook blocked just last month when russia was less caught with its hands in the cookie jar. i do apologize for having come under the weather some good deposit have some water.
12:42 pm
they blocked 32 pages, the three most important pages blocked all had to do with identity politics. one was black elevation meant to appeal to african-americans. the other one was resistors which was met for feminist -- did it can resistors? the third was the worst, was made to play on a chicago activist of the southwest united states and, therefore, the states have to separate from the rest of the country. obviously russia was trying to create mayhem but not just virtual mayhem real-life mayhem. the organized a protest against the racist white supremacist rally that took place here in washington in mid-august. most of you remember there were like 18 white supremacist. they were outnumbered vastly by journalist alone little-known the counter protesters.
12:43 pm
but what russia did was resistors itself set up a facebook event and set up a counter protest. obviously what it wanted to do was have come to replicate what happened in charlotte's alachua we had actual bloodshed when young woman was killed by a white supremacist. now, real groups, cohost of defense that was greeted by resistors, rush actually pick resistors is just the front. according to tech crunch put the event that facebook delete have been taken over by handful of real d.c. area activist groups. included smash bases and d.c., black lives matter d.c., black lives matter charlottesville, and other local groups. this left many of them disgruntled and feeling badly let down by facebook. one of the organizers was quoted by one of the tech magazines the same this is a great resource and it makes us look a russian
12:44 pm
ponds. if any of this new? no. it doesn't go back as far as bazaars but this is following the soviet playbook, the kgb, for example, is very well known that it tried to come and post itself is meant of the kkk at one point. also fabricated evidence that linked the cia to the assassination of john f. kennedy. it wasn't just to use jeff's father. it passed the material often unwitting conspiracy theorists in the united states. what the soviets did it forged a letter from lee harvey oswald to a very little-known cia operative known by the name of e howard hunt. and the letter said, asking for any steps are taken by me or anyone else, so the forger took
12:45 pm
place in the 1930s when howard hunt was much better now because watergate. i think much more worryingly the kgb also tried to discredit the reverend martin luther king by plating articles working as an uncle tom. who was being secretly paid off by the government so lbj could control martin luther king. there what about this in the 1990s said these are selling but is forgetting the context in which this took place. this was a time when malcolm x was calling dr. king an uncle tom also and other separatists just because dr. king saw peace and assimilation rather than separatism. there's an interesting aside, a lot of these cases i have just decided were in the book which i think was used as reference. the interesting aside here is that he himself tried to turn himself in to the cia in the
12:46 pm
early '90s and was turned away. the cia soviet -- eastern european division hat at the time come to the conclusion this is like 1991 i think was of the kgb was a look at the and rush was no longer a threat so the cia began to turn away soviet defectors. he turned to the british. so folks have been underestimating the soviet the russia threat for decades. even the times when it wrote about this in the 90 said that cia had acted naïvely after the soviet union by underestimating this. today, everyone -- they think the left now wants to use this to attack a legitimately elected president, and the age of trump,
12:47 pm
you know, the point of reference is a longer the "new york times" is now facebook so how is facebook deal with this? facebook gets many things wrong, that it's doing i think can try to do a fairly good job so it doesn't get criticized by congress. the bad actors are getting much better at hiding their connection with russia, which makes the java facebook and google and anyone else and twitter much harder. facebook itself said last month when it announced it had blocked pages that it's clear whoever sets of these accounts went to much greater length to obscure the true identities than the russian based incident research agency ira has in the past. so facebook says it has to just lay and wait for bad actors to slip. in this case there was a slip. it lasted only seven minutes. that was enough. one of the accounts set up by the ira that facebook had disabled in 2007 had shared a
12:48 pm
facebook event with these pages come specially the resistors page. the resistors itself made the mistake of having the ira account, and ira account as one of his administrators for only seven minutes and that was enough for facebook to realize what was going on and go in and block them. they are try, facebook, like its big tech monopoly sisters, google and twitter, trying to thread a a difficult needle hee is social media has added a lot to the pursuit of happiness but is also being used i think, is being exploited by that actors. what i wanted to close with his it's not just really russia. when i talk to my friends in the government, they are very and what about russia, very about russia and a high level of awareness at all levels of the administration about what russia is trying to do. but china is also that actor. it really needs to be discussed
12:49 pm
in this context and it's not just social media either. china is also very sophisticated about trying, i know the secret is about russia but had to bring in china. it's also a very sophisticated about trying to influence american public and thus american policy. and it does seem, it does so ways that sometimes we don't realize. we both heard about the confucius institutes, i guess about 10000 of them now and they take money and what to do as they don't allow, they try to stifle discussion of the three keys, taiwan, tiananmen square and tibet. less well-known is what's happening with hollywood where china is telling studios, if you want to get in peace of our box office, you know, incredibly china was mall, it's going to be bigger than use issue, if not by mixture, you really want to submit your script to the
12:50 pm
chinese censors. sometimes they bring the chinese censors on the set. the beautiful people are not really hiding this, beautiful quote by james cameron. i think about two years ago what he said quote, i've noticed i most against censorship but this is an important marker for me some going to do what's necessary to continue having this be an important market for my films. and i'm going to play by the rules that are integral to this market because you have to. this is the same james cameron who is incredibly out there defending truth here in the u.s. but despite his incredible candor, most americans don't know about this. what i've called for in the past is to say, well, made in the titles to the movies, you know, just say this move has been submitted to chinese censors.
12:51 pm
and the last thing i want to add is china is going out there and buying radio stations. it's doing not just here come in canada and australia, new zealand as well as trying to pass it off as an american radio station. it is finding a loophole here to get around the regulations that we have. so just to sum it up, it's not, it's russia. russia is really serious, a real addressee that i welcome finally the left has come around to seeing that it is an adversary. they have to take it seriously but it's also, it's not just social media and is not just brush either. thank you. [applause] >> all right. as you can see we have our work cut out for us here as we're thinking about how to counter these daunting challenges. we are going to go till about 1:30 and like to invite the
12:52 pm
audience to ask questions of the panelists. if you do, please identify yourself by name and affiliation, and keep it short and keep it to a question rather than a comment period any questions after? one right here in the second row. >> carl, retired special agent u.s. customs. i was a 9/11 responder. the conversation went way beyond russian operation to touch on 9/11 and i'm amazed jfk at e howard hunt came up as well. i do have two lay foundation for question. e. howard hunt confessed before he died in 2072 involvement along with several other name cia personnel in the plot to assassinate jfk. he claimed to have only been a benchwarmer but there is testimony in federal court that he was dispensing cash in
12:53 pm
dallas. the trial document in the book plausible denial. i don't know, i would go to the question, 9/11 as response i hope go through the roof of the world trade center, the third tout the collapse of the day which in the west with complete block of indymedia to the 47 47 story building collapsed at 5:2. housed the largest the message y a office outside of virginia. with even what the public knows. my question will be, falsifying terrorism come to what extent, well, russian, u.s., nato interest apply false flag terrorism to influence people in, well, there submissiveness to governing authority? i would go back to mentioning jfk, operation northwoods presented kennedy by the joint chiefs of staff called for falsified terrorism on u.s.
12:54 pm
interests to influence public opinions to support invading cuba, including substituting drone aircraft in flight for commercial aircraft bringing them down and using that as a pretext for war. >> i'm not going, i don't have time. i'm not going to google to think about howard hunt just now but you know, i'm just going to leave that aside. i don't know about it. if anybody knows about howard has been involved in the kennedy assassination, please do speak up. look, with an insult and work, i'm an american and a care about american interest. i don't ask how successful are we being at taking what to the other side. asking how success is he of the site being at inflicting, you know, , getting in the way of or success. it we do these things as you say, i don't, it's not something
12:55 pm
that dash and cousin but defending american society and americans in this country. that's really the only answer i can give you the item if anybody else wants to -- >> i can adjust the chairs in question in russia. russia's a state-sponsored terrorism plain and simple. they have spotted terrorist activity in ukraine. they have sponsored kurdish terrorism in turkey. that is president erdogan singh, not me. here the principal honors hezbollah and iran, and they probably have links to other terrorist groups to their with you with the taliban. they are sharing intelligence with the taliban. they may be sending arms as well. so terrorism is not intimate of the russian strategy and where it fits their interest that bute also victims of terrorism. so where it sits there interest.
12:56 pm
they will employ terrorism as an instrument of war, as an incident russian foreign policy. you were talking up false flag terrorism if i heard you correctly? i don't know their recruiting people under false flags for terrorist purposes. false flag the second gsm working for x and him working for why you are sympathetic sino i have leverage or i can get leverage adjudicating information for support. i don't know that's happening of no evidence of that but i do know this, based are a state-sponsored terrorism and very few people want to admit it. >> okay. so we have question here. >> good afternoon. very simple question speakers could you identify yourself first. >> was yes, i did. i'm a retired director of international protocol. mr. blake, blank, you mentioned
12:57 pm
that russia's unlawful influencing very much in latin america picky mention argentina. i like to know if you know what of the countries this is happening? >> okay. venezuela for sure. they tried this in ecuador. i think it is still in ecuador. nicaragua and, of course, cuba. >> south america. >> venezuela certainly large russian presidents although it may have been this fashion may have diminished because there's not much with the gdufa. they have tried in ecuador. they tried ten years ago, for example, they had this major program that was one that was caught trying to run weapons -- columbia but they're trying to get intelligence cooperation and information networks with venezuela and ecuador was about the leftist government against colombia, our main ally in the part of water in terms of argentina, 2014 they had the
12:58 pm
networks on argentina television rt. i think this all of the present in argentina but the code is completely different and the circumstances are not much different. >> thank you. not that much all over south america. one more question. to the gentleman, i can't read his name, the last with the do you know if china has infiltrated? >> one keeps hearing china come yes, it's very involved in venezuela. i'm not a latin american -- but china is very involved all over the world so i wouldn't be surprised that it is doing the same thing in south america that it is in north america and australia. >> thank you. we had a question also in the second row. >> thank you. howard with the christian science monitor.
12:59 pm
mike, i'd like to ask you, , you said at the end that he welcomed some on the american left seem to be getting this now, that russia's influence and its attempts at influencing here. but that seems to be happening at a time when some on the right and some self-identified republicans in paul's seem to be going the other way. they might say, polls where pertinent is growing popularity. recently there was a poll showing that it still small but double-digit percentage of republicans said that they would welcome russian influence in elections, if it was on the right side in the right direction. so wondering why do you think
1:00 pm
that's happening and what can be done by what should be done to kind of get that in the bud? >> you know, being somewhat wry, welcoming the left to the threat that russia represents under putin, but obviously him and i don't know what people say to tell pollsters things they say. when i as carpal stricken by wife said where doing that? just why are you talking to pollster? you know, i guess, i'm just, perhaps i shouldn't be doing this but i'm guessing that some people think, you know, trump got elected, get over it. stop using this as an excuse to not accept this presidency. ..
1:01 pm
he's spreading hate, so i think that people, especially conservatives have had it up to here with hypocrisy so i don't know if this is a function of that but i'm really articulating here which ishouldn't do . >> i think there's a number of things. first, it's the influence of president trump who has a devoted following and no small amount of appeal to people's emotions and there is a constituency out there that believes like mike has
1:02 pm
talked about, second, i think let's befrank, successful in information operations. you have a school of conservatives and their writing in public about how putin is a strong defender of christian values. as a russian operation that's been successful . it's absolute nonsense. this guy going around murdering people and i don't know what religion sanctions that but there is back, and there's also a major problem and here i speak as an old college professor. we don't educate people about civics, to use the old term. >> should we teach it differently? >> we may teach it, but we don't educate it. >> i agree with you, thepoint is very good . >> that makes us easier to undermine. >> i think so, is always easy to undermine. >> whatever it's about, but
1:03 pm
the point is i can tell you having been out in the front lines that it's expensive ignorance and it's all over the country, not in one particular area, it's appalling . >> all right, do we have any other questions in the audience? back here? >> jd wong with mtv tv and the question is for mike. because you just talk about try china trying to influence the democracy here.how do you see the difference between russia and china and their influence operations and also for these upcoming midterm elections, do you think china will try to exercise influence and do you have any examples of how will they do to influence here? >> obviously they do it differently, there was a good congressional report published last week on how china is trying to use its influence. by trying to use overseas communities and i encourage
1:04 pm
you to read it if you haven't read it. they behave differently but they are both spoilers. they don't really have allies, they have vassal states and they try to disrupt open societies and other societies aroundthe world . >> i lived in china for a couple of years around 2000, 2001 and i was impressed with the chinese operation. i thought it was tremendously well-thought-out and professional. i never once heard them say anything falls which is a key insight, if you're doing this kind of work there. what you're saying is verifiably true, then it's going to be more powerful and the chinese have brilliant editors. they tell the truth in a way that leaves out certain important facts, perspectives, context and
1:05 pm
leads people to draw the conclusion they want to draw on their own with facts they can verify in their own research. the chinese are good atthat . so we ought as aprofessional, i have to accord them certain respect .>> and i think we had anotherquestion in the front row . >> accepting the fact that putin has fan clubs on the left and right, he will continue to do so which is beyond my comprehension and he played out our attempts to do something about it, i'm not terribly optimistic that we know how to handle this, that we know how to put a end to it despite all the press that's come out about buitina and henry dimitri and others, i'm not sure that we are
1:06 pm
breaking or making a crack on indentation in this so how would you propose, any of the panelists that you go about doing this? and i don't think it necessarily we have the answer. >> so you're right in that i talked a lot about government, and the government, we have a pretty awesome government. what i mean by that is that the bureaucracies we set up in the mid century to fight the cold war, and coming out of the great depression to, they are not quite old and bureaucracies by nature establish more rules every year so it becomes ardor and harder to accomplish anything. this coordinating role i was talking about is necessary and we have to find a way to align all these different authorities and capabilities, but you're quite right.
1:07 pm
the government probably can't unify itself. it's going to need industry partners in places like facebook and places like google but it's also going to need a civic effort by the american people. as helen and i were discussing before this panel began , what the russians do is they go and they find legitimately issues. like the black lives matter and blue lives of matter thing. both sides of these things exist, there are real tensions between them, they both have a point to a greater or lesser degree, you can take whatever side you want but they both have an argument and it's part of the public discussion that we need to find a way to talk to these arguments rather than fighting about them. we come to see as a people that this is tremendously important for us to reason together rather than fight with each other. that's the way you get past
1:08 pm
russian propaganda more than anything else . stop feeling and start thinking. >> i think you need to have political leadership and it hasn't been there for whatever reason. you haven't had institutional leadership either. if you talk to people at the management level or international broadcasters and say we can't do that, that's propaganda, we don't do propaganda . private corporations have been remiss, facebook, we see how bad facebook has been about protecting our privacy and they're not alone. we've had a lot of mismanagement. those of us in civil service like you joke that all our records are in china because of the great scandal for seven years ago when all records were stolen by china. there's a whole bunch of other things going on.
1:09 pm
so brad is right. you need the government, you need the private sector, you need institutional and civic leadership but you have to have a vision of what it is you are trying to accomplish and how. i don't know that we are trying to get our message across in any systematic innovative way other than europe and the oa which are great organizations but are handicapped. to the russian or pro-putin community, let me take the war home toputin. another reason why the democratic national commission would be the only ones that are , no reason we can't try to find out where his bank accounts are and his money is and go public with how much he and his buddies have stolen from the russian people whose condition gets worse day by day. that kind of information is true information, reported, reliably sourced and is a force multiplier. >> i would add a couple points on that.
1:10 pm
on the resiliency of a society to these types of operations that we could be doing in dc, that's something that needsto be done . and there's the foreign agent registration act, right now it's too easy for people to be foreign influencers without having to register at such and then naming and shaming as we've seen in these cases, that hopefully will make people think twice about engaging in these kind of questionable activities, even in the back of their mind, they say they're not sure who this is or what this is about, 80 have to give give a few extra questions or ask why this person is reaching out to me or setting up these trips to moscow or to beijing or whatnot, what's really happening here so some of these name and shame what the press is doing is important and highlighting some of these cases .
1:11 pm
. both on the russian front but also exchanging some of our rules and regulations to make it harder for foreign agents to operate. without having that. >> so what do you think about reintroducing the rules of reciprocity because a lot of what has gone on wasn't allowed in the 60s and 70s. we had very, when you were doing this policy or economic exchanges you had rules of reciprocity so for example, if a us firm could not own property in russia or in the soviet union, then that the person not own property in the united states. a lot of this happened after our own banking and the savings-and-loan failure and they took it from china and russia what do you think about the rules, why is an oligarchy owning the brooklyn next and we put in on a hockey team in that case
1:12 pm
shall, what you think about that? >> in those cases, the oligarch is involved in sanctionable activities so we seize their assets. and i think in the short term, it's an easier approach but in the long term i think that's open for discussion that would play out . and in the russia case, the china case, it's that kind of economic impact on is that footprint too big and can you deal with it with a knife as opposed to a sledgehammer? >> the middle over here? >> i name is russell reading and i'm here as a private person.i specifically to mister blanks, you mentioned about the resurgence christianity among many of the kgb or fsb personnel. does this have anything to do with the possible schism
1:13 pm
between the eastern orthodox church which is basically centered in the ukraine? can you say something about that please? >> the orthodox church, that has been all over the state and it's also been allover the secret police going back in many cases . there's no privacy in the confessional, for example. the church was obliged to inform on people telling them of the dishes activity. >>. >> as an arm of the russian state is that it isan arm of the empire . and there has been this trend if you go through the entire ukrainian history and try to look at the ukrainian history of objectively without polemics on either side or on the many sides of all these issues, the russian orthodox church tried to assert that it is the main church and the ukraine's orthodox church is
1:14 pm
subordinate to it. and that therefore the russian orthodox church and by implication therefore the russian state have hegemony or leadership in ukraine and that they are the church you should orient yourself towards area they have tried to play this game with readable bigger on under putin and particularly because this is a major issue in terms of people's cultural, national and political identification. so without getting excessively long about this, they like to have used the church as a political weapon and have militarized religion. in a sense or weapon eyes religion as an arm of the russian state policy and it's been going on for decades and particularly we now see it in the ukraine but we're also seeing it in serbia. serbia, you know, they claim
1:15 pm
we have to have this orthodox brotherhood and so forth so when the russians and the serbs want to be friendly towards each other you have all these pms orthodox lobby of brotherhood and when they're not so friendly to each other, the shoe is on the other foot. just remember tito ends colin, nobody was talking about the islamic brotherhood then, quite the opposite so they are attempting to use people's religious convictions as an arm of political warfare. >>. >> another question there. >> thanks. will bacher, heritage intern starting in september. i was wondering, i think it was the woman mentioned russian operations in the anti-fracking movementand i was wondering if you could go into more detail, how they're doing and why they're doing it . >> therewas a recent government report on this .
1:16 pm
but why they're doing it, energy is one of their main exports. cheaper us natural gas, fracking area they see there's a natural last movement for environmental reasons against it. so they are pumping money into those campaigns. it helps their own economic interest for example. >>. >> i'm william thompson and i'm also an intern starting in september so given that one of russia's main weapons is the use of facebook, you talked about counter propaganda, balancing speech and state interests, what role the us government be in persuading systems not to vote solely based on things they see on facebook . >> so that's a part of a really important question.
1:17 pm
the question you asked is what can we do to educate voters, that's important. the other things that the us government can do with regards to facebook, that can help them to be a good partner for american democracywithout engaging in a viewpoint discrimination or something similar , we've had things in the past like the harris doctrine, that's a law that used applied to broadcast television. it was regulated pretty extensively because it was a very narrow set of bandwidth on this issue that you could broadcast only so many channels though there was only so much intention and they thought it was justified, the government to make sure that everybody was represented within that space. that all viewpoints are treated fairly. and if you had one thing you wanted to say about your side you had to give the other
1:18 pm
side equal time or otherwise to make arrangements to make sure they work suppressed so one of the things we need to do is to engage in voter education, that's something that thefederal government doesn't have a huge role in . the department of education and push that down just as a suggested standard so most education of american citizens under the state level were by private agencies but what the department of education, it's certainly work on trying to make sure we have tendered that we can suggest area that we should also probably look at dealing with these issues because these larger places like facebook and twitter, there on the internet which in theory is more or less unlimited, it doesn't have that broadcast limitation but as you know from studying note theory, about you of a network is an exponential on the number of nodes that has but when you get to a certain size as a spoken and twitter have, they're not quite
1:19 pm
infinitely but exponentially more valuable than any alternative so they have a kind of similar bandwidth lock on american attention. it might be worth looking at something like the fairness doctrine to make sure propaganda efforts don't go unanswered and viewpoint discriminationdoesn't become an issue . >> i want to add, welcome to heritage. i'm going to take a different tack on this. as a former news man i don't want to talk about the fairness doctrine. i always thought i'm old enough to remember the bad old days of when walter cronkite and john chancellor were all we hadand they were fine and then, very liberal , they all lived in new york and we have information democracy now. it's latin, caveat emptor, buyer beware. it's on you, you have to be the filter but i wouldn't leave it to facebook or the government to police any of
1:20 pm
this. i would leave it, i want to be the one, and i think i have a good filter now when i read something that looks to me like russian propaganda. if i search a little bit and see who pays the bills on this information source, it is russian propaganda so i feel for you. this is a new burden on a new generation that you're going to have to be the filter yourself but it's vastly preferable to what we had 15 years ago, iguarantee you and by the time you finish with your internship here, i will have you believing so . >> otherwise you will be fine. >> i want to add to that. besides what brad and michael said , we have to hold these corporations to account. these are giant corporations with in norma's corporate power as everybody knows. that power has to be held accountable, not just to
1:21 pm
congressional hearings although that's one case. we need to support investigative journalism to uncover these things. without investigative journalism, there's a whole series of scandals not even related to these topics that we know about, that would have been covered up and heinous crimes would have gone unpunished but for those reporters. therefore, organizations like facebook and twitter need to be held to account in the public domain. they provide a tremendous service or product as the case may be but that brings a certain responsibility which they are not going to live up to on their own or in many cases can't, so we have to be there. >> all right, anybody else? have we talk this through enough for today? i assure you we will not stop pursuing this topic at the
1:22 pm
heritage foundation and i hope that you will join us for future programs which we delve deeper into the activities of the russian government and propaganda. so let's wrap it up, thank you to the panel and thank you to all ofyou for coming . >>. >>.
1:23 pm
>>. [inaudible] >>.
1:24 pm
>>.
1:25 pm
>>. [inaudible]
1:26 pm
>> tonight president trump speaks at a campaign rally in indiana to support republican
1:27 pm
candidate mike braun was running against joe donnelly. live coverage begins at 8 pm eastern on c-span. >> leading up to next week's confirmation hearings for supreme court nominee brett cavanaugh , c-span teamed up with psb research for a survey on american attitudes about the supreme court. the poll found 39 percent of people support judge cavanaugh's nomination while 35 percent opposed and 26 percent have no opinion considering the supreme court as a whole, the survey found that 91 percent of people say the high court's decisions affect their everyday lives . only 28 percent office supreme court acts in a serious and constitutionally sound manner. 56 percent say justices are split on political grounds while 16percent work sure. we asked about allowing cameras in the supreme court , 64 percent of those are made agree the court should allow self television
1:28 pm
coverage of its oral argument and 71 percent the court should allow the same day release of audio recordings of court cases. the c-span psb survey was conducted with 1000 likely voters. see all the survey results online at c-span.org. watch live coverage tuesday at 9:30 a.m. eastern on c-span three, streaming on our website, or listen live with the free radio. >>. >> next, an award ceremony recognizing members of congress and staffers were non-legislative achievements and constituent services. the event was hosted by the congressional management foundation. among the recipients were arizona democratic representative raul brawl.and washington republican representative kathy mcmorris rodgers. >>. >>

17 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on