This is important: The purpose of a lot of Russian disinformation/lies is NOT to fool anyone but to act with impunity in violating the rules without purporting to change the rules. Under international law, wars of aggression are illegal. If one means to launch one... has to either (a) confront a problem under international rules and norms (b) or simply lie about what happened. Putin's innovation is that he has realized that it matters not at all if the lie is credible or even plausible. As long as you say it, it works.
@anneapplebaum has been pointing this out for years. It's a VERY important element of Russia's information strategy.
And it's a big through-line of a lot of aggressive Russian actions with respect to neighbors and other countries. Murdering dissidents with chemical weapons? Just deny it. Doesn't matter if everyone knows you're lying.
Interfering in US elections? Fuck it. Just lie about it.
It doesn't matter either if nobody believes your allegations against @Billbrowder. Make them anyway in a hundred different forums.
The insistent assertion of falsehood as truth is a form of domination.

That's all I got.

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More from @benjaminwittes

12 Jan
It has become a talking point among Trumpists and some non-Trumpist conservatives that @staceyabrams--like Trump--did not concede the race when she ran for governor of Georgia in 2018.

It's really not true. Abrams did not concede that the race was fair, but she did concede... Image
...that under the rules as they were written and understood and implemented, her opponent had prevailed and would become governor. This is significantly more than Trump ever conceded until after the violence of Jan. 6. And he has still never really said this even up to now.
I have never studied Abrams's claims about the fairness of the vote in Geoegia, so I am not taking a position on whether her substantive points have merit or whether her position was defensible. I am flagging it because it seems to me very wrong to compare it, even formally, ....
Read 4 tweets
10 Jan
Not sure I saw the "they were old anyway" coming...
@bethanyshondark I don't want to take this out of context or ascribe views to you that you do not hold. So let me just ask: What exactly do you mean by this? It really sounds like culling-the-herd argument to me.
Also, quite apart from the morality of the point @bethanyshondark is making, her tweet is quite misleading as a factual matter. Yes, COVID deaths disproportionately affect the elderly. But the majority of them, as the data below reflect, are not people...…
Read 4 tweets
9 Jan
A very special #BeastOfTheDay today to round out our Jan. 6 week of beasts who fight fascists, comfort victims, and otherwise commit acts of valor. @lageneralista yesterday nominated a veritable menagerie of valorous beasts—a thread of whom follows:…
Read 8 tweets
8 Jan
Today’s #BeastOfTheDay is “Wojtek”—a Syrian brown bear who fought the Nazis on behalf of a Polish battalion fighting with the British. Bought as a cub by soldiers at a train station in Iran, he was enlisted and had his own rank and serial number.
He was promoted to corporal.
Wojtek served in campaigns across the Middle East and in the Italian campaign. He moved crates of ammunition. After the war, he spent the rest of his life at the Edinburg Zoo in Scotland, visited regularly by Polish soldiers, who lovingly fed him cigarettes. He died in 1963.
There are memorials to him all over Poland and Scotland.
Read 5 tweets
6 Jan
Support/therapy dogs play a valuable role in high stress law enforcement environments. I remember walking into the FBI cafeteria with @Comey one time and watching him stop to pet the therapy dogs there.
These dogs are today's #BeastOfTheDay…
Read 4 tweets

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