Tucker Carlson, Tulsi Gabbard among 'most influential' in spreading Ukraine disinfo: researcher

Tucker Carlson, Tulsi Gabbard among 'most influential' in spreading Ukraine disinfo: researcher
Tulsi Gabbard speaking at the Presidential Gun Sense Forum, hosted by Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action, at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines, Iowa in August 2019, Gage Skidmore

A disinformation and digital authoritarianism researcher says U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), Fox News propagandist Tucker Carlson, and former Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard are the “most influential” in spreading anti-Ukraine disinformation and misinformation.

Marc Owen Jones, an assistant professor of Middle East studies and digital humanities at Hamad bin Khalifa University, posted a graphic representation of different types of tweets about Ukraine and “biolabs,” the latest right-wing and Russia conspiracy theory.

Jones, who is also an honorary research fellow at Exeter University, has written about disinformation on social media for The Washington Post. He says that Greene, Carlson, and Gabbard are all “involved in some form of manipulation or propaganda.”

He says that former Congresswoman Gabbard “likes talking about biolabs,” and “once parroted Kremlin denial propaganda about use of chemical weapons in Syria.”

Jones describes Gabbard’s particular disinformation as “insidious.”

“An important thing to remember is this,” Jones sums up. “It’s not about believing disinformation that’s important. The fact so many are expending media resources to talking about this as opposed to, say, covering the invasion, is a massive distraction that benefits Putin.”

“If the Kremlin,” he continues, “can shift the news agenda, at least in part, to talking about something else, especially if that thing can be used as a stick to beat the current administration with by the opposition, Ukraine does not benefit.”

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