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Elon Musk recently released evidence that Twitter censored conservatives at the behest of the Democratic establishment. Democrats were evidently not alone in determining what kind of publicly relevant content should be censored on the social media platform.
The FBI also helped set the stage for Twitter's censorship of the Hunter Biden laptop story.
According to Twitter's former head of site integrity, outspoken Trump critic Yoel Roth, the FBI indicated in its weekly pre-election meetings with the social media company in 2020 that the company should anticipate a "hack-and-leak operation" by "state actors" involving Hunter Biden.
The New York Post reported that the specificity of these warnings and their wording primed Twitter to immediately censor the Post's bombshell Oct. 14 Hunter Biden laptop story, citing the tech company's "hacked materials" policy.
What are the details?
In a Dec. 21, 2020, declaration to the Federal Election Commission, Roth — who had previously compared the Trump administration to Nazis — said that he was "told in these meetings that the intelligence community expected that individuals associated with political campaigns would be subject to hacking attacks and that material obtained through those hacking attacks would likely be disseminated over social media platforms, including Twitter."
"I also learned in these meetings that there were rumors that a hack-and-leak operation would involve Hunter Biden," Roth added.
The FBI offered similar warnings to Facebook, which also censored the story, noting that it would be prudent to anticipate "Russian propaganda" ahead of the election.
Zuckerberg said on "The Joe Rogan Experience" that "the FBI, I think, basically came to us — some folks on our team — and was like, ‘Hey, just so you know, like, you should be on high alert.'"
"We just kind of thought ... if the FBI, which I still view as a legitimate institution in this country, it’s a very professional law enforcement — they come to us and tell us that we need to be on guard about something, then I want to take that seriously," added Zuckerberg.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg indicated that the Post's Hunter Biden laptop story "basically fit the pattern" of what the FBI had told the company to look out for. The company made sure few could read the story.
\u201cBREAKING: Mark Zuckerberg tells Joe Rogan that Facebook algorithmically censored the Hunter Biden laptop story for 7 days based on a general request from the FBI to restrict election misinformation.\u201d— Minds\ud83d\udca1 (@Minds\ud83d\udca1) 1661465924
The New York Post reported that the FBI not only primed social media companies to censor the Post's bombshell October 2020 report, but may have done so preemptively, possibly having known it was coming.
The FBI reportedly had a covert surveillance warrant enabling the bureau to spy on former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's online cloud.
With access to Giuliani's emails, both to the Delaware computer repair shop owner and to Miranda Devine of the Post, the FBI may have known that the Hunter Biden laptop story was going to be published and that it contained damning information about the Biden family.
Extra to the emails, the FBI also had a copy of the laptop since Dec. 9, 2019, so it likely knew how damaging its contents might be to the Democratic candidate's election chances. This also strongly suggests that the FBI knew that the contents of the laptop were not hacked or fabricated in any way.
In August, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) highlighted FBI whistleblower complaints alleging that "FBI officials intentionally undermined efforts to investigate Hunter Biden."
One whistleblower stated that local FBI leadership told employees, "You will not look at that Hunter Biden laptop" and that the FBI is "not going to change the outcome of the election again."
FBI Supervisory Special Agent Elvis Chan testified on Nov. 29 that he along with the FBI's Foreign Influence Task Force and other senior FBI officials held weekly meetings with Twitter and other major social media companies, reported Fox News Digital.
Chan indicated that the bureau cautioned Twitter and Facebook against alleged Russian disinformation efforts ahead of the 2020 election.
According to the Post, Chan, who previously advanced the discredited claim that Russia interfered to help elect former President Trump in the 2016 election, was unable to recall in his deposition whether Hunter Biden was mentioned by name in the weekly disinformation briefings with the social media companies.
This claim is at odds with Roth's declaration that then-candidate Joe Biden's son had been mentioned by name.
Chan's testimony came as part of a lawsuit brought by Republican Attorneys General Eric Schmitt of Missouri and Jeff Landry of Louisiana.
The FBI agent and 46 defendants are accused of "coordinating with social-media platforms relating to censorship and suppression of speech on their platforms."
\u201cBREAKING: In Missouri and Louisiana's lawsuit against the Biden Administration for allegedly colluding with social media companies to censor speech, the deposition of an FBI official will move forward after our big win in Court earlier today. \n\nRead the ruling here -->\u201d— Attorney General Eric Schmitt (@Attorney General Eric Schmitt) 1668460401
"Big Tech has become an extension of Biden’s Big Government, and neither are protecting the freedoms of Americans; rather, they are suppressing truth and demonizing those who think differently. ... Ripped from the playbook of Stalin and his ilk, Biden has been colluding with Big Tech to censor free speech and propagandize the masses," said Landry.
Landry indicated that the purpose of the lawsuit is to "ensure the rule of law and prevent the government from unconstitutional banning, chilling, and stifling of speech."
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Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News.