AP: Russian military behind spread of Coronavirus disinformation.


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BOSTON (AP) — Dr. Ashish Jha started 2020 thousands of miles from home, taking a sabbatical in Europe from his academic post at Harvard. Then the coronavirus pandemic arrived in the U.S.

Jha, an expert on pandemic preparedness, returned to Massachusetts, and his blunt talk on the unfolding disaster was soon hard to miss on national news and social media.

Jha estimates his office fielded more than 100 media requests a day at its peak. He went from a few hundred Twitter followers pre-pandemic to more than 130,000 by December.

“For me, the purpose of doing this was to fill a void and make sure people received credible scientific information,” said Jha, who recently became dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health in Providence, Rhode Island. “I thought it would go for a week or two, but the demand never really let up.”

In another time, experts like Jha would have enjoyed the quiet esteem, respect and relative obscurity afforded by academia. But for better or worse, the coronavirus pandemic thrust virologists, epidemiologists and other normally low-profile scientists into the pop culture crucible.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a leading member of President Donald Trump’s coronavirus task force, has been the unquestionable rock star among them. But a cadre of other scientists also rose to prominence this year. Many developed loyal social media followings and became regulars on the cable news circuit.

For Dr. Angela Rasmussen, a Seattle-based virologist affiliated with Georgetown University in Washington, her newfound notoriety hit home in July when she got into a Twitter debate with billionaire Elon Musk.

Rasmussen, who was then at Columbia University, criticized the Tesla CEO’s tweets questioning data on the spread of the virus. Musk, to her surprise, chimed in, challenging her to produce evidence supporting her arguments.

Rasmussen tweeted back a series of graphs and other scientific data, which Musk dismissed as “cherry-picked.” Twitter users following along slammed Musk for attempting to “mansplain” the pandemic to a virologist.

Rasmussen, who has seen her Twitter followers explode from around 300 pre-pandemic to more than 180,000, said she’d like to avoid unnecessary Twitter beefs, which also included testy exchanges with “Dilbert” comic strip creator Scott Adams and his fans over the pandemic in recent months.

But as the pandemic has worn on, she has become frustrated with the persistent misinformation from influential leaders and celebrities like Musk and Adams, and her strongly worded tweets show it.

“It’s exhausting,” Rasmussen said. “The same arguments keep coming back. It’s like battling a hydra. Every time you cut one head off, another one grows back in place.”

Laurel Bristow, an infectious disease researcher at Emory University in Atlanta, suggests it’s an indictment of academia that misinformation and conspiracy theories thrive and that parts of American society remain deeply skeptical of true scientific work.

“Experts in these fields have ignored the importance of communication and bringing information to people in a way that is understandable and relatable for so long,” Bristow said. “You have to put a face to something for people to be able to trust it.”

Bristow, 32, whose Instagram username is kinggutterbaby, has gained more than 300,000 followers posting videos answering people’s questions and concerns about COVID-19.

She credits her online popularity to her unfussy approach. She shoots her short videos speaking directly at the camera while sitting in her kitchen.

It also helps, Bristow said, that her Instagram feed is filled with pictures of her posing with cuddly animals, riding motorcycles and other things from her daily life.

“Having people see me as a whole person helps remind them scientists are people with families too, and that the best interest of people is really at the heart of what we’re doing,” she said.

Dr. Akiko Iwasaki, an immunobiology professor at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, said she has sought interviews with conservative media outlets as a way to combat fear and misinformation, especially with the nationwide vaccine rollout underway.

“There’s such a divide in society. I’d really like to reach the other side and make a difference,” said Iwasaki, who was already a notable advocate of women in science and tech fields before the pandemic but has seen her Twitter following swell to more than 90,000 this year.

Like other female scientists, she said that she has encountered frequent misogyny and “mansplaining,” but that it has only made her more determined to continue speaking up.

“I have this platform, and I’m going to use it,” said Iwasaki. “My priority is to get out the correct information, not respond to toxic comments.”

Jha, meanwhile, admitted he wasn’t prepared for the level of racial animus his pandemic commentary has generated — a complaint shared by other scientists of color.

A native of India who has lived in the U.S. since the 1980s, he said much of it is of the “go back to your country” variety that he simply shrugs off.

But a gut check moment came in November, when Jha began receiving death threats after testifying before Congress and strongly rejecting assertions made by Trump and others that the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine could also protect people against COVID-19.

Jha said the threats were concerning enough that he notified local police, who sent patrols past his family’s Boston-area home as a precaution.

Now, as 2021 dawns, he said he is looking forward to being less in the public glare.

When President-elect Joe Biden takes office, Jha said, he expects federal government authorities will take their rightful role as the public face of the nation’s pandemic response, after being diminished and undermined at critical times this year.

“That’s who the American public needs to be hearing from more,” he said, referring to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and experts like Fauci at other federal agencies. “I’m a poor substitute for what’s needed.”


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Yet another person who needs to have all of their social media activity compared to all the other domestic terrorists who have been triggered over the last decade.

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GRAFTON, Wis. (AP) — Police and federal authorities are investigating after a Wisconsin health system said an employee admitted to deliberately spoiling 500 doses of coronavirus vaccine.

Aurora Medical Center first reported that the doses has been spoiled on Saturday, saying they had been accidentally left out unrefrigerated overnight by an employee at Aurora Medical Center in Grafton. The health system said Wednesday that the doses of vaccine now appear to have been deliberately spoiled.

Police in Grafton, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) north of Milwaukee, said in a statement that the department, FBI and Food and Drug Administration are “actively” investigating the case. Police said they were notified of the alleged tampering Wednesday night. Police said Thursday morning that no other information would be immediately released, and declined to say if any arrests have been made.

In a statement late Wednesday, Aurora said the employee involved “acknowledged that they intentionally removed the vaccine from refrigeration.”

Aurora said it has fired the employee and referred the matter to the authorities. The statement said nothing about a possible motive for the action.

“We continue to believe that vaccination is our way out of the pandemic. We are more than disappointed that this individual’s actions will result in a delay of more than 500 people receiving their vaccine,” the statement said.

Aurora said it would provide more information on Thursday.


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I think they should have focused not on the difference between Democrat and Republican identifying fake headlines. It is that over 40% of the population can't correctly pick out propaganda/disinformation.

Stick to AP news/Reuters IMO and just assume everything else is bullshit until you check it on one of those factual news sites.
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I really think that this is a good time to mention that the Russian military has been spreading propaganda nonstop about this virus. I know you said that you think it's fishy, but when you have a couple minutes you mind checking this thread out and letting me know what you think please.


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I think they should have focused not on the difference between Democrat and Republican identifying fake headlines. It is that over 40% of the population can't correctly pick out propaganda/disinformation.

Stick to AP news/Reuters IMO and just assume everything else is bullshit until you check it on one of those factual news sites.
CNBC? Owned by NBC, a propaganda organization these days. The great Tom Brokaw. I knew him once after meeting him when I lived in the same South Dakota town he grew up in. Tom was known to be a punk in his hometown of Yankton South Dakota, his father worked for the Army Corps of Engineers at several Missouri River dams. His mother still lived there in the late 80's while I worked in South Dakota.


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CNBC? Owned by NBC, a propaganda organization these days. The great Tom Brokaw. I knew him once after meeting him when I lived in the same South Dakota town he grew up in. Tom was known to be a punk in his hometown of Yankton South Dakota, his father worked for the Army Corps of Engineers at several Missouri River dams. His mother still lived there in the late 80's while I worked in South Dakota.
Anyone on TV worked way too hard to get there to be a normal person.

Doesn't make what they report factually incorrect or misleading. There is a reason that they have laws governing what they can and cannot say and a very public record of when the actual news companies get it wrong because they get sued.

I still recommend sticking to AP news or Retuers though. But if you want a very good conservative leaning webbased actual factually highly accurate news source, I recommend Houston Chronicle.



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CNBC? Owned by NBC, a propaganda organization these days. The great Tom Brokaw. I knew him once after meeting him when I lived in the same South Dakota town he grew up in. Tom was known to be a punk in his hometown of Yankton South Dakota, his father worked for the Army Corps of Engineers at several Missouri River dams. His mother still lived there in the late 80's while I worked in South Dakota.
When you use the word, "propaganda", what do you mean by that?


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One after another, desperate New Yorkers trekked to the back of a line that snaked around corners and down several blocks in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park neighborhood on Thursday evening. It was chilly and dark, but the wait was worth it for hundreds lured by a message promising a rare find: a leftover dose of coronavirus vaccine.

“We need to give out 410+ doses in the next 4 hours at Brooklyn Army Terminal (by 7 p.m.), taking anyone in community age 18+, walk ins, or earlier than scheduled,” read the WhatsApp message.

By early evening, the New York mayor’s office took to Twitter to warn that the memo was “misinformation” and that “there is NOT available vaccine for people without appointments.”

But that news didn’t make it in time for the crowd swarming the 24/7 site, where staff members quickly became overwhelmed dealing for hours with the confused masses.

The chaotic scene reflects the country’s disorganized and slow vaccine rollout. So far, roughly a third of the vaccines distributed throughout the country have been used, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. At least 11.1 million people have received one dose of the vaccine and 1.2 million people are fully vaccinated, according to The Washington Post’s tracker. At least 688,000 New Yorkers have received the first dose. The state received 1.6 million first doses.

Experts warn of vaccine stumbles ‘out of the gate’ because Trump officials refused to consult with Biden team

It’s not surprising some New Yorkers would believe the message. Throughout the country, some pharmacies and hospitals have offered leftover doses with a dwindling shelf life to walk-ins. In D.C., people have camped outside of pharmacies, hoping to bag an inoculation. But other institutions have made detailed contingency plans, like the Nashville Metro Public Health Department, which has a standby list so that extra doses aren’t wasted.

It’s still not clear who started the rush on the Brooklyn Army Terminal on Thursday. The anonymous message, which is time-stamped at 3:40 p.m., quickly spread on Twitter, group chats and Slack channels.

It didn’t take long for city officials to debunk the rumor. At 5:29 p.m., Bill Neidhardt, press secretary for Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) tweeted out a warning and said authorities would tell the crowd to leave. “We are sending people to Brooklyn Army Terminal to ask people in line to return home if they don’t have appointments,” he wrote.

Neidhardt tweeted that the WhatsApp message “did all it could to look official,” and he acknowledged that many sites do have leftover doses — but certainly not 400, as the message said.

You may have seen this bogus image. As a result there is now a line of people outside the Brooklyn Army Terminal who are not going to get vaccinated.

I know we're all desperate to get vaccinated but sharing stuff like this does more harm than good & creates confusion. pic.twitter.com/iP4nzUPa6W
— Justin Brannan (@JustinBrannan) January 14, 2021
But despite those claims from the mayor’s office and other city and state officials who said the message was “bogus,” some people who queued said officials told them the site was taking walk-ins.

“I waited in line until a doctor came out and she confirmed that they had been taking walk-ins, but that it was a one-time event that they would not be repeating,” Cecilia Nowell, a freelance reporter, tweeted in response to Neidhardt.

In a video posted on Twitter, a man recorded a woman he said was a doctor at the site echoing Nowell’s comment. “Today was an exception,” the woman said in the video. “It was a single event. Unfortunately, we are not able to offer walk-ins anymore.”

Here’s the full story of tonight from a doctor at the site pic.twitter.com/FbW8Kb1M7Y
— Stephen Lurie (@luriethereal) January 14, 2021
Another video showed a health worker saying that the site had accepted walk-ins earlier, but that they were too understaffed to handle the crowd. “There were extra vaccine, but we don’t have the man power,” she said.

The endless line outside the Brooklyn Army Terminal alarmed people who showed up for their scheduled appointments. As of Monday, teachers, education workers, first responders, people over 65, public safety workers and public transit workers in New York are eligible for the vaccine.

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“Even workers were confused,” Privett said. “I spoke to a staff person and she said, ‘We’re not honoring appointments.’ I freaked out.”

Soon afterward, a woman holding a bullhorn and flanked by two police officers went to the line and instructed people with appointments to line up separately and told the rest of the crowd that they were not accepting walk-ins.

“Once we got inside, everyone moved like clockwork,” Privett said. “It was just chaos outside the fence.”

Privett said the scene was a reminder of how badly people want to get inoculated.

“I think people are desperate to get a vaccine,” Privett said. “I think a lot of people just really want to get back to whatever their lives were pre-March of last year, which I totally understand. But this is not the method to do that.”


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LONDON (AP) — The European Union’s drug regulator said Friday that COVID-19 vaccine documents stolen from its servers by hackers have been not only leaked to the web, but “manipulated.”

The European Medicines Agency said that an ongoing investigation showed that hackers obtained emails and documents from November related to the evaluation of experimental coronavirus vaccines. The agency, which regulates drugs and medicines across the 27-member EU, had troves of confidential COVID-19 data as part of its vaccine approval process.

“Some of the correspondence has been manipulated by the perpetrators prior to publication in a way which could undermine trust in vaccines,” the Netherlands-based agency said.

“We have seen that some of the correspondence has been published not in its integrity and original form and, or with, comments or additions by the perpetrators.”

The agency did not explain exactly what information was altered — but cybersecurity experts say such practices are typical of disinformation campaigns launched by governments.

Italian cybersecurity firm Yarix said it found the 33-megabyte leak on a well-known underground forum with the title “Astonishing fraud! Evil Pfffizer! Fake vaccines!” It was apparently first posted on Dec. 30 and later appeared on other sites, including on the dark web, the company said on its website.

Yarix said “the intention behind the leak by cybercriminals is certain: to cause significant damage to the reputation and credibility of EMA and Pfizer.”

Cybersecurity consultant Lukasz Olejnik said he believed the intention was far more broad.

“I fear this release has a significant potential of sowing distrust in the EMA process, the vaccines, and vaccination in Europe in general,” he said. “While it is unclear as to who may be behind this operation, it is evident that someone determined allocated resources to it.”

This is an unprecedented operation targeting the validation of pharmaceutical material, with potentially broad negative effects on the health of Europeans if it leads to undermining trust in the vaccine.

The agency said that given the devastating toll of the pandemic, there was an “urgent public health need to make vaccines available to EU citizens as soon as possible.” The EMA insisted that despite that urgency, its decisions to recommend the green-lighting of vaccines were based “on the strength of the scientific evidence on a vaccine’s safety, quality and efficacy, and nothing else.”

The agency, which is based in Amsterdam, came under heavy criticism from Germany and other EU member countries in December for not approving vaccines against the virus more quickly. The EMA issued its first recommendation for the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine weeks after the shot received approval in Britain, the United States, Canada and elsewhere.

The European Medicines Agency recommended a second vaccine, made by Moderna, for use earlier this month. A third shot made by AstraZeneca and Oxford is currently under consideration by the agency.

The EMA said law enforcement authorities are taking “necessary action” in response to the hack and a criminal investigation is ongoing.


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nice one....

I can pretty much guess who were the hackers

it's weird how the information age has almost turned to almost and underground war......


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The anti-vaccine protest that temporarily cut off access to a mass vaccination site at Dodger Stadium was organized on Facebook through a page that promotes debunked claims about the coronavirus pandemic, masks and immunization.

The Facebook page, “Shop Mask Free Los Angeles,” issued a call last week to gather Saturday at the baseball park. Health authorities have been administering shots to as many as 8,000 people a day at the site, one of the largest vaccination centers in the country. Such venues form a critical component of the effort to corral the pandemic, which has lashed Los Angeles County so brutally in recent weeks that oxygen for patients has been in short supply.

The online activity illustrates the extent to which Facebook remains a critical organizing tool of the anti-vaccine movement, despite the company’s repeated vows to curb coronavirusmisinformation. It also shows how social networking services could foster more confrontational tactics by those committed to false ideas about the dangers of immunization as the mass vaccination effort ramps up.

“I’m concerned this is the next phase of their anti-vaccine activism, going to places where the vaccine is being distributed and being disruptive there,” said Tara C. Smith, an epidemiologist at Kent State University and an authority on vaccine resistance.

Such activity, she said, could come to resemble protests at abortion clinics or demonstrations against stay-at-home orders at state capitols, a prospect that worries public health officials as they aim to speed vaccinations in a race against more-transmissible and possibly more-lethal variants now confirmed in this country.

Facebook spokeswoman Dani Lever said the company was reviewing the page and would “take action against any content that violates our policies.”

“Shop Mask Free Los Angeles” publicizes opportunities for “maskless shopping,” in violation of state and local rules requiring face coverings outside the home. It posts videos of confrontations inside businesses in Southern California, where anti-mask extremists film themselves going toe-to-toe with other customers and law enforcement. In the videos, the individuals behind the smartphones rail against what they see as “discrimination” and “medical tyranny.” A message sent to the page went unanswered.

The page itself has only about 3,000 followers, but the notice about what it termed a “PROTEST/MARCH” at the mass vaccination site was shared extensively in Facebook groups and on pages fixated on false ideas about masks, such as that they restrict breathing and that the Constitution forbids mandating their use.
Names of the online forums include “Anti-Mask REVOLUTION!” and “Unmask California.”

The technology giant committed at the end of last year to enhancing its policies against coronavirus-related misinformation. That included a pledge to remove misinformation about the safety, efficacy, ingredients and side effects of coronavirus vaccines.

In a sign of gaps in the company’s enforcement, however, the “About” section of the anti-mask page promoting the Saturday protest included a link to a website devoted to the baseless “Plandemic” narrative accusing shadowy elites of enriching themselves by engineering the coronavirus and a vaccine for it.

The 26-minute documentary introducing the groundless theory went viral on Facebook in the spring before the company moved to erase it from its platform. When a follow-up came out in August, Facebook blocked users from posting it.

But the anti-mask page directs users to “Planned-demic” website that features a wide range of videos devoted to the misinformation. Some of the links to the videos are broken. The site elevates claims by the video’s central figure, Judy Mikovits, a former scientist at the National Cancer Institute who has made a series of discredited claims.

Ellsworth S. Fortman, assistant Los Angeles fire chief, said that while scorching temperatures and high winds have interfered with testing and other aspects of the pandemic response, he never expected anti-vaccine activists would thwart other people’s access to inoculations.

In addition to the demonstration’s promotion on Facebook, Fortman said, in the days leading up to the protest he also received word about its advertisement on Instagram, which is owned by Facebook. One post transmitted to the department, which he shared with The Washington Post, came from an account called “socaltrumptrain.” It announced plans for an “anti-lockdown freedom rally and march” at Dodger Stadium.

The protest included only about 50 people, who waved signs and shouted anti-vaccine slogans. But their presence was sufficiently disruptive to force authorities to close the stadium’s gates, delaying thousands of motorists in line for a vaccine. Ultimately, it did not affect the number of people who were able to receive shots, officials said. No arrests were made.

Especially in Los Angeles, an epicenter of the pandemic, any effort to throw up barriers to vaccination threatens to undermine the pandemic response, said Diana Shiba, president of the Los Angeles County Medical Association. The disruption, she said, could not come at a worse time, with medical workers racing to stay ahead of virus variants.

“It’s so unfair to those who want to receive a vaccine,” she said.


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Over in the troll thread about this virus, someone is claiming that the below chart is showing that 378 people have died from the vaccine.


Note that under the chart it has a note that these reports don't mean that it is due to the vaccine or possible side effect of getting it. But that doesn't matter to the circle jerk of troll posts that followed it. Just thought I would point this out.


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So troll #1 asked why vaccine makers would want immunity from lawsuits.

I can't imagine with the amount of false lawsuits the conspiracy theorists have been tossing out like they are confetti.

Trump had what 70 frivolous lawsuits and 'thousands of affidavits' about a election that his own people said were bullshit.

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Them not being sued does not give them the ability to break the law and sell defective vaccines.

But like all the complex issues facing our societies, trolls ignore nuance in order to sow distrust in our institutions and professionals that are trying their best to save us from this virus.


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So the new Covid disinformation troll @HaroldRocks was spreading his dangerous propaganda in another thread (here) and I thought I would check it out.

So it is a clickbait article that is misleadingly trying to use cherry picked data to scare people who will fall for this attack because hell the site looks legit.

I decided to check out the propagndists that wrote the click bait, and of course Russia pops out of her bio who just happened to start her website the same time that the Russian military has been shown to have started their attack on our citizens.

Then I check it on the media bias check, and they have shown that this is a bullshit website that is the exact type that the Russian military has been using to attack our nation.

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Knowing it was bullshit, I looked back at the website and of course it has a 'comment' section for their militarized trolls to spread the lies they really want people to become invested in:

Nonstop propaganda, and "Joe F." puts the cherry on top by nudging people to spread their lies across every platform that they can 'organically' spreading this very dangerous propaganda just the like the troll who posted this shit here did.

I thought that I would check out the founder, a Kennedy, was surprising, but not a lot since there is qanon conspiracies wrapped around them.

I suggest listening to this troll's family about how he is dead wrong.
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