The US President’s allies are seeking to raise at least $2 million to fund research on certain journalists and political columnists, according to the US website Axios. The aim: to discredit media considered hostile, such as the “Washington Post” and the “New York Times”, in view of the presidential elections in 2020.
An eye for an eye, a scoop for a scoop. In the wake of Donald Trump’s campaign for the 2020 presidential elections, some of the president’s staff are seeking to raise at least $2 million for an unusual purpose, according to the American website Axios: to fund research aimed at discrediting political journalists.
The list is long: “CNN, MSNBC, all cable networks, the New York Times, the Washington Post, BuzzFeed, the Huffington Post and all those who relay bias and misinformation in their daily news coverage,” says the fundraising prospectus available to Axios.
Already a victim
The operation consists in exhuming compromising information about contributors to “fake news media”, as Donald Trump has called them since his campaign in 2016. The press, one of his favourite targets, is “nothing more than a diabolical propaganda machine rolling for the Democrats,” he repeated again last week on Twitter.
In all, “several hundred” people would be supervised in this way, according to an anonymous source quoted by the “New York Times”. With, as their main gateway, their activity on social networks, under scrutiny – sometimes over years – in the hope of digging up harmful content.
One victim of this close surveillance has already been killed: Jonathan Weisman, editor-in-chief of the Washington-based New York Times. The journalist was demoted by his employer after the ultra-conservative and pro-Trump Breibart News reported controversial tweets – and quickly deleted – that questioned the birthplaces of several Democratic women MPs, including Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar who were already targeted by Donald Trump a few weeks ago.
According to the American press, the initiative is considered, in the Trump galaxy, as a fair response to the hypocrisy of journalists, who peel back the Republicans’ digital activity to extract the most controversial remarks, likely to draw an unflattering portrait of the party.
“The purpose of this campaign is clearly to intimidate journalists who are doing their job, which includes verifying the actions of those in power and exposing wrongdoing,” said Arthur Gregg Sulzberger, editor of the New York Times publication, in a statement.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator