A newly declassified report released by the office of the Director of National Intelligence reveals that Russia attempted to interfere in the 2020 US Presidential Elections, and that Russian President Vladimir Putin was “aware of and probably directed Russia’s influence operations against the 2020 US Presidential elections.”
The report titled Foreign Threats to the 2020 US Federal Elections was made public today and says, “We assess that Russian president Putin authorized, and a range of Russian government organizations conducted, influence operations aimed at denigrating President Biden’s candidacy and the Democratic Party, supporting former President Trump, undermining public confidence in the electoral process, and exacerbating sociopolitical divisions in the US.” However, the report says, “Unlike in 2016, we did not see persistent Russian cyber efforts to gain access to election infrastructure.”
The report goes on to say, “A key element of Moscow’s strategy this election cycle was its use of people linked to Russian intelligence to launder influence narratives – including misleading or unsubstantiated allegations against President Biden – through US media organizations, US officials and prominent US individuals, some of whom were close to former President Trump and his administration.”
It adds, “Throughout the election cycle, Russia’s online influence actors sought to affect US public perceptions of the candidates, as well as advance Moscow’s long-standing goals of undermining confidence in US election process and increasing sociopolitical divisions among the American people.
The report also names Iran, China, Lebanese Hezbollah, Cuba and Venezuela as having made varying degrees of attempts to influence the election.
The entire report may be read here.
Feature image courtesy Kremlin.ru via Wikimedia Commons.