Journalist cries troll after finding ‘Russian quotation marks’ in story about Biden’s illegitimate child
Journalist Julia Ioffe, a Russiagate true-believer who covers foreign policy and national security topics for mainstream US publications like WaPo and The Atlantic, immediately smelled a rat when the Arkansas-Democrat Gazette tweeted an article claiming that “DNA testing has established that Hunter Biden is the father of an Arkansas baby,” with what she – a Russian speaker – called a “Russian quotation mark” next to it (»)
Perhaps assuming Russian hackers had taken over the (verified) account to talk smack about little ol’ Biden, Ioffe raced into action, tweeting “note the Russian quotation mark.”
Deleted a couple tweets after being correctly corrected. Turns out the paper had used that symbol before. It had jumped out to me, a Russian speaker (and keyboard user) as a quotation mark and looked like other, sloppy attempts by Russian trolls to push stories. 1/ pic.twitter.com/EcRkpkA6GT— Julia Ioffe (@juliaioffe) November 20, 2019
Others pointed out that, while it might be used in Russia as a quotation mark, it also looks a lot like an arrow, and since it’s a newspaper trying to get people to click on the story, and since there was no other quotation mark…
Ioffe refused to be satisfied, demanding to know how one might create such a symbol on an American QWERTY keyboard. It’s not clear why she wanted to know - was she plotting an infiltration of her own of some hapless news outlet? She does speak Russian, and you can never be too careful.
She later apologized, but not without getting another dig at the paper’s tweet, which “looked like other, sloppy attempts by Russian trolls to push stories.” Hear that, @ArkansasOnline? Leave Biden alone!
Twitter had a field day with her paranoia. “I SEE RED PEOPLE!” one user snarked. Others pointed out the “Russian quotation mark” is not exclusively Russian, conjuring up visions of Russo-French-Italian “botfams.”
Does this mean you're going to get professional help for your Trump Derangement Syndrome?— Mark Dice (@MarkDice) November 20, 2019
True. She coulda just clicked the link too, but she probably thinks Arkansas is a Russian plant.— βrαδ (@bcook128) November 21, 2019
When historians have fully documented this insanity they will need to come up with a name to describe it. I will be suggesting "Ioffe Disease".— Michael Lovering 🌺 (@mikesublime) November 21, 2019
The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette was far from the only outlet to write about the younger Biden’s amorous indiscretions. The mother of the baby filed for child support in May, only to be ignored – hence the DNA test. Worse, given the child’s birthdate, it would have been conceived while Biden was still dating his dead brother’s widow.
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