This is how Facebook censor Seymour Hersh’s report on Nord Stream bombing


Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, US policy toward the crisis has been intricately intertwined with the US government’s growing convergence with the social media platforms that make up the public digital arena today, according to Responsible Statecraft.

To align with the war effort in Ukraine, tech companies have selectively softened their bans on hate speech and violence, shut down media accounts critical of the war and US policy toward it, and witnessed a massive army of bots posting content supporting Ukraine and its NATO partners.

According to Responsible Statecraft, Facebook is now monitoring and preventing the sharing of reports by American journalist Seymour Hersh about the US role in the attack on Nord Stream pipelines.

Starting Thursday, the report revealed that “if you try to share the article in which Hirsch first placed his Nord Stream information, an alert will appear warning you that pages and websites that repeatedly post or share false news will see their general distribution reduced and will be restricted in other ways, and if you decide to share anyway, Hersh’s article will be published, but blacked out and flagged as false information”.

In addition to classifying the post as false, Facebook also send a notification hours later that says “you’ve shared something that included information that independent fact-checkers said was partially false”.

Facebook warns that people who repeatedly share false information may have their posts moved to a lower level in News Feed, indicating that if you continue to share any other reports that have been challenged by fact-checkers, the account will be restricted.

This attempt to hinder the spread of Hersh’s story on Facebook is a small glimpse of the disturbing effects when technical censorship combines with government pressure, and indicates how easy it’s to smother independent reporting while allowing the spread of official disinformation.

And by suffocating open public debate on an issue of such serious and urgent importance, the result isn’t just a threat to a free press, but to American democracy more broadly.

Early this month, Hersh, who won the Pulitzer Prize for journalism, predicted an imminent political catastrophe for US President Joe Biden, due to the repercussions of the Nord Stream pipeline bombings.

Last September, a series of powerful explosions destroyed the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines, which pass through the Baltic Sea from Russia to Germany and provide cheap gas to Europe, and it was soon revealed that the attack was an act of sabotage. deliberately, without the executing party having been officially identified so far.

On February 8, the American journalist published his investigation into the Nord Stream pipeline explosions, in which he revealed, quoting a source, that explosive devices were planted under Russian gas pipelines, in June 2022, under the cover of maneuvers by divers. US Navy, with the support of Norwegian specialists.

According to Hersh, the decision to launch the operation was taken by the US president after nine months of discussions with administration officials concerned with national security issues, which was denied by the Pentagon at the time, stressing that the United States has nothing to do with the explosions of Russian gas pipelines.

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