Biden’s ex-disinfo czar registers as foreign agent
The former disinformation czar for President Joe Biden’s administration, who resigned amid controversy earlier this year, has registered as a foreign agent representing a UK activist group that advocates for censorship of speech it finds objectionable.
Nina Jankowicz filed her registration paperwork with the US Department of Justice earlier this month, identifying herself as a representative for the London-based Centre for Information Resilience (CIR). Her work with CIR will include serving as an ambassador for the group with US policymakers, media outlets and technology companies.
Jankowicz resigned as the director of the newly created US Disinformation Governance Board last May, after the administration “paused” the initiative amid public outcry that it might operate as an Orwellian “Ministry of Truth.” She had called for blue-check Twitter users, including herself, to police commentary on the social media platform by editing tweets that they considered false or misleading.
Jankowicz had also been criticized for being a purveyor of false information herself. For instance, she called the New York Post’s October 2020 scoop on Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop a “Trump campaign product” and warned that militant supporters of then-president Donald Trump would show up at the polls to intimidate voters.
She also proposed that Big Tech platforms censor allegations that Covid-19 leaked from a Chinese lab and claimed that online mockery of Vice President Kamala Harris was a threat to national security and democracy.
CIR, which is funded partly by the UK government, bills itself as an independent “social enterprise” that counters disinformation, exposes human rights abuses and combats online behavior it deems harmful to women and non-white people. Its advisers include former CIA analyst Cindy Otis and former Estonian president Toomas Hendrik Ilves, who led his country’s accession to NATO.
Much of the group’s commentary is anti-Russia, especially as it relates to the Ukraine conflict. It accused Russian forces of committing various war crimes and claimed that Moscow illegally deported Ukrainian civilians to Russia. Last year, CIR claimed to have discovered a coordinated network of social media accounts that posted Chinese Communist Party propaganda.
CIR co-founder Ross Burley, a former British Foreign Office operative, has publicly called for social media platforms to ban certain independent journalists and outlets, such as the Grayzone, which he called a “Russian propaganda outfit.”
The "Centre for Information Resilience" is headed by UK Foreign Office operative @rwdburley, who falsely calls Grayzone "a Russian propaganda outfit" and wants YouTube to censor us. Nina is a very worthy ambassador for this state propaganda operation.pic.twitter.com/g68VtSWR0Hhttps://t.co/QA3FA7eim8— Aaron Maté (@aaronjmate) November 23, 2022