Rick Gates Solicited Proposal For Online Disinformation Campaign to Help Trump

Rick Gates Solicited Proposal For Online Disinformation Campaign to Help Trump

Rick Gates Solicited Proposal For Online Disinformation Campaign to Help Trump

Infamous Trump campaign official Rick Gates took proposals from an Israeli intelligence firm for "online manipulation" tools that would have been used to help the campaign gain an edge over primary challengers and Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Zamel has been questioned by investigators for the special counsel, according to the reports, and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents have traveled to Israel to interview employees about the proposal and have asked Israeli police to seize computers from Psy-Group's Petah Tikva offices.

The New York Times reported that Gates requested the proposals from the Psy Group.

Gates is Trump's former deputy campaign chief, and among more than 30 individuals - including other ex-administration officials - indicted by Mueller. The proposal requests included the creation of fake online identities and gathering intelligence to help Donald Trump defeat his Republican opponents and ultimately Hillary Clinton.

Another goal was to convert Cruz supporters into Trump supporters because Trump's team feared the Texas senator would lead a revolt over the Republican presidential nomination.

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One proposal involved using fake social media accounts to sway delegates for Sen. Similar to the disinformation campaigns that Russian operatives were launching around the same time, Psy-Group also suggested that the campaign use social media to highlight polarization in the U.S. Another proposal describes opposition research and "complementary intelligence activities" about Mrs. Clinton and people close to her, according to copies of the proposals obtained by The New York Times and interviews with four people involved in creating the documents.

Psy-Group's owner, Joel Zamel, did meet with Donald Trump Jr.in August 2016, according to the Times.

In this June 21, 2017, photo, special counsel Robert Mueller departs after a meeting on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Mr. Zamel's attorney told The Times the meeting at Trump Tower was just to outline the company's capabilities in "general terms". They pitched Mr. Trump Jr. on a social media platform or marketing strategy.

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