Twitter hires ‘alarming number’ of former spies: report
The analysis found that some of the former FBI officials have retained important designations at the social media company, for instance FBI veteran Karen Walsh.
Twitter has been hiring a significant number of ex-FBI agents and other former “feds and spies,” an analysis of employment and recruitment websites found. The microblogging major has employed “dozens of individuals from the national security state to work in the fields of security, trust, safety and content," the document accessed by MintPress shockingly revealed. “Chief amongst these is the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The FBI is generally known as a domestic security and intelligence force. However, it has recently expanded its remit into cyberspace,” it further stated.
The analysis discovered that some of the former FBI officials have retained important designations at the social media company. For instance, FBI veteran Karen Walsh, who served as a special agent for 21 years, was made the director of corporate resilience at the Silicon Valley-based company. Other roles were held by former employees of the Central Intelligence Agency and NATO think-tank Atlantic Council.
“Twitter also directly employs active army officers," the analysi found.
In 2019, the head of the editorial for Twitter's entire Europe, Middle East and Africa region Gordon Macmillan was in fact, an officer in the British Army’s notorious 77th Brigade. This military unit was dedicated to the online warfare and psychological operations. When independently verified, some of the top managers and employees at Twitter were found to be the employees of the United States security service and spy agency. Former FBI agent and whistleblower Coleen Rowley told MintPress that some of these agents already have their eye on post-retirement jobs, which includes Twitter. “The truth is that at the FBI 50% of all the normal conversations that people had were about how you were going to make money after retirement,” he was quoted as saying by the agency. READ | Facebook and Instagram users in India can now create their 3D avatars; Here's how
Twitter's big claims about 'neutrality' debunked
While Twitter makes big claims about "neutrality," its record of hiring personnel mostly from the US national security organizations puts to question the company's standing. Twitter with those types of employees are undoubtedly, “the source of some of the largest and most extensive influence operations in the world," the analysis stated. The firm "views every problem in the same manner as the US government does – and act accordingly,” MintPress warned, adding that it also analysed lists compiled by Twitter of the countries struggling with the disinformation and political divide.
"One cannot help noticing that this list correlates quite closely to a hit list of US government adversaries. All countries carry out disinfo campaigns to a certain extent. But these ‘former’ spooks and feds are unlikely to point the finger at their former colleagues or sister organizations or investigate their operations,” MintPress stated. For instance, labels and warnings are added to state-affiliated media of Russia, China, Iran and Cuba, generally hostile countries to the United States.
In another shocking aspect that links the role of the US government agencies in controlling the social media platforms, it was found that Facebook entered into a formal partnership with the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensics Research Lab. This arrangement largely governs feeds of over 2.9 billion users worldwide, and they also help decide what content to promote or withhold. Meta has employed the former NATO Press Secretary Ben Nimmo as its head of intelligence, the report claimed. MintPress claims that it has found top sites such as Reddit and various US media outlets with an impact such as Thomson Reuters and others employing former spies.
"One of media’s primary functions is to serve as a fourth estate; a force that works to hold the government and its agencies to account. Yet instead of doing that, increasingly it is collaborating with them. Such are these increasing interlocking connections that it is becoming increasingly difficult to see where big government ends and big media begins,” the report suggested.