U.S. intelligence agencies say that information from Russia is specifically attempting to paint Ukraine as the bad guy in its war -- even claiming that actors are posing as mourners and corpses in efforts to represent people and families of people who have purportedly been killed.
The "bad guy" image is still being broadcast on state-owned Russian TV shows. But the real news that this is fake comes via the U.S. TV networks.
This is part of a widespread effort by the U.S. to reveal top intelligence information that in years past governments looked to keep close to their vest.
All this comes in an era of mounting information, misinformation, and manipulation -- on a nonstop basis -- so much so that some news consumers are saying things like: “We don't know what to believe.”
But now U.S. intelligence agencies have made a rare move -- jumping ahead of a possible news curve with data releases that Russia would almost certainly be doing battle. Sure, we hoped they would be wrong -- considering the horror, death and destruction that would come.
This is a different kind of information battle -- one based on nuance and delivering, to the best extent possible, honest probabilities
All this comes to light now after the discovery that six years ago, during the 2016 Presidential election, Russian trolls exploited the U.S. media with misinformation and manipulation of social media platforms
They still push that today -- although it might seem muted. Some of their recent efforts, according to analysts, include propagating more anti-vaccine misinformation.
The more efforts by the U.S. agencies and private companies to jump ahead or in near real-time of such content, the better chance of diffusing it.
No, it may not be perfect. And that's okay.
A headline at NBCNews.com this past week said this: “In a break with the past, the U.S. is using intel to fight an info war with Russia, even when the intel isn't rock solid.”
Figure it's a different spin on what the former President famously said: “Russia if you're listening...”