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FEATURING JOSHUA FRANK – The Washington Post on November 24th published an article with the sensationalist headline, “Russian propaganda effort helped spread ‘fake news’ during election, experts say.” Technology writer Craig Timberg cited two teams of what he called “independent researchers,” one of which is a group called PropOrNot.

According to Timberg, PropOrNot is a “nonpartisan collection of researchers with foreign policy, military and technology backgrounds.” Except that the group keeps its identity secret and on its website promotes a list that includes hundreds of news websites some of which might in fact be funded the Russian government, but many others of which are simply independent news websites or blogs.

Among the websites that, according to PropOrNot, “Reliably Echo Russian Propaganda,” is an outlet that I write for,, and other popular left-of-center websites such as,, and Is this a revival of the red baiting tactics of the past?


Joshua Frank, Managing Editor of Counterpunch, author of a number of books including, Left Out! How Liberals Helped Reelect George W. Bush. He has a forthcoming book out with Jeffrey St. Clair called Heatstroke: Earth on the Brink.

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