Joe Biden

POLITICS: You couldn’t have picked a worse Minister of Truth than Nina Jankowicz

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If you were trying to discredit your own regime, you would be hard-pressed to do better than create a Ministry of Truth, house it within your domestic-security apparatus and appoint a serial spewer of untruth to lead it.

But don’t let the folly of the Biden administration’s Nina Jankowicz-led, Department of Homeland Security-housed Disinformation Governance Board fool you. The DGB is not only a discrediting and delegitimizing project but a dangerous one.

Start with Jankowicz, the self-described “Mary Poppins of disinformation.” She is uniquely ill-suited to be an arbiter of truth — a position that has no place in a free country.

Jankowicz is an unrepentant Russiagate collusion-monger who praised that the former British spy behind the discredited Steele dossier.

Jankowicz also amplified the ultimate in election-interfering disinformation — that the New York Post’s censored-but-true Hunter Biden laptop story was Russian disinformation; footage Internet sleuths unearthed indicates she believes a 2020 joint Senate committee report on the Biden family’s dubious foreign dealings during Joe’s vice presidency is “disinformation” too.

Jankowicz is neither a competent arbiter of truth nor a neutral one. In June 2016, she tweeted “#ImWithHer,” sharing an ill-fated Hillary Clinton quotation that “A Donald Trump presidency would embolden ISIS.” The believer in the idea systemic racism plagues America has intimated that critical-race-theory critics consist of “Republicans and other disinformers.”

Many people question President Biden’s reasoning for choosing Jankowicz, even after she spoke poorly about his son.
AP/ Tiffany Blanchette

Jankowicz dismissed criticism of Hunter Biden for taking a seat on the board of corruption-plagued Burisma. And in a November 2020 Foreign Affairs piece, she lavished praise on his father, gushing that the “bridge builder and big-tent politician . . . may be uniquely equipped to lead efforts to shore up American resilience to foreign and domestic disinformation.”

Therein, she lobbied for the creation of a position akin to her current one. While careful then to say a “counter-disinformation czar” should “not try to serve any fact-checking or content moderation role, thereby avoiding accusations of censorship” — a curious way to put it — Jankowicz said nothing about free speech, a prerequisite for combating false or poorly conceived ideas. Amid Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover effort, she clarified, telling NPR, “I shudder to think about if free speech absolutists were taking over more platforms.”

Jankowicz apparently supports the idea that select Twitter blue-checks be permitted to add “context” to tweets. Ominously, regarding those who hold dissenting positions on US-Ukraine policy, Jankowicz has tweeted: “we can deal with . . . political outliers when the war is over. . . . Until then, amplifying their pro-Putin views through criticism only serves to divide us and help Putin.”

Hunter Biden
Jankowicz claimed the Hunter Biden laptop story was Russian disinformation.

This is the person charged with combating, for now, disinformation contributing to “irregular migration” into the United States and Russian disinformation heading into the midterms. So for Jankowicz, would speaking the truth about the administration’s sovereignty-eviscerating immigration policies constitute “irregular migration”-related disinformation? If the Hunter Biden laptop story emerged today, would DHS label it Russian disinformation? What would it do about it?

DHS says DGB has no “operational authority.” But that it is coordinating across the government makes it operational.

The broader context makes it more chilling: Last year, the Biden administration released a National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism that calls for “enhancing faith in government and addressing the extreme polarization, fueled by a crisis of disinformation and misinformation.” “We will work toward finding ways,” the document adds, “to counter the influence and impact of dangerous conspiracy theories.”

In February, DHS claimed America faced a “heightened threat environment fueled by . . . an online environment filled with false or misleading narratives and conspiracy theories, and other forms of mis- dis- and mal-information.” The bulletin, echoing prior ones, highlighted wrongthink regarding election integrity and COVID as key contributors to potential terror.

The administration previously threatened to pursue parents critical of CRT and draconian COVID policies like jihadists. It has repeatedly called on corporate and social media to combat “misinformation and disinformation” — going so far even as to flag “problematic posts” for Facebook.

It is hard to see the advent of a DGB as anything other than an escalation in a burgeoning War on Wrongthink.

Leaders of the intelligence community, Big Tech and corporate media colluded to suppress the Hunter Biden story and spread disinformation that it was Russian disinformation.

With the structures and process the Biden administration is putting into place — and considering its actions to date — we may well be facing a future of endless Hunter Biden laptop episodes.

We will have our dissent-squelching regime, epitomized by Nina Jankowicz and the DGB, to thank for it.

Benjamin Weingarten is RealClearInvestigations deputy editor, a senior contributor to The Federalist and a Claremont Institute fellow.



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