Editor’s Note: Whether the assertion is true or not, we have to recognize that human biases make open western democracies very easy targets for the spread of dis- or mis-information. Why do it? I was lucky to have been introduced to a book called Unrestricted Warfare written by two PLA Colonels in 2000. Since then, I have never felt a need to ask “Why?”
Chinese Agents Helped Spread Messages That Sowed Virus Panic in U.S., Officials Say
American officials were alarmed by fake text messages and social media posts that said President Trump was locking down the country. Experts see a convergence with Russian tactics.
By Edward Wong, Matthew Rosenberg and Julian E. Barnes
April 22, 2020
WASHINGTON — The alarming messages came fast and furious in mid-March, popping up on the cellphone screens and social media feeds of millions of Americans grappling with the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.
Spread the word, the messages said: The Trump administration was about to lock down the entire country.
“They will announce this as soon as they have troops in place to help prevent looters and rioters,” warned one of the messages, which cited a source in the Department of Homeland Security. “He said he got the call last night and was told to pack and be prepared for the call today with his dispatch orders.”
The messages became so widespread over 48 hours that the White House’s National Security Council issued an announcement via Twitter that they were “FAKE.”