Iran und Russland mischen sich nach Angaben des amerikanischen Geheim­dienst­koordinators aktiv in die Präsidentenwahl ein. Sie verbreiteten Falsch­informationen und hätten illegal persönliche Daten registrierter Wähler erbeutet, sagte John Ratcliffe am Mittwochabend bei einer kurzfristig einberufenen Pressekonferenz. Die Daten könnten missbraucht werden, um Wähler falsch zu informieren und Verwirrung zu stiften, sagte er weiter. Iranische Stellen hätten bereits E-Mails verschickt mit dem Ziel, „Wähler einzuschüchtern, sozialen Unfrieden zu schüren und Präsident Trump zu schaden“, sagte Ratcliffe.

Wie er zu der Auffassung kam, dass diese E-Mails Trump schaden würden, erklärte Ratcliffe nicht.

I often will read something in German, read it again, and ask myself “Does this really say what I think it does?” before searching a dictionary for a word or a phrase.


Come to think of it, I have this experience with news in English as well, in which case there is no dictionary search available for reassurance:

USA Today:

“These actions are desperate attempts by desperate adversaries,” Ratcliffe said. “We will not tolerate foreign interference in our election.”

The late-evening announcement by Ratcliffe and Wray, who did not take questions, didn’t go much further than alerts issued in August when intelligence officials warned about the activities of Russia, Iran and China.

In that bulletin, the chief of the National Counter-Intelligence and Security Center said that Russia was actively working to “denigrate” presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, while China viewed Trump as “unpredictable” and preferred that he not win re-election.

The analysis also concluded that Iran was working to foment division and undermine Trump in advance of the 2020 election.

“The grave takeaway here for American voters clearly is we’re under attack, and we likely will be facing this challenge through November 3rd and beyond — so updates like these will be necessary as developments warrant,” Sen. Angus King, I-Maine said.

What dictionary can I consult to get a translation elucidating what is to be understood here of the proposition American voters are under attack — not by American oligarchs who actively use American politicians to disenfranchise voters and keep the spectrum of available public discourse punishingly narrow — but by desperate Russians, Iranians, and Chinese (does Ratcliffe believe employees of the foreign services of these countries are all equally desperate? How does he gauge the desperation of a political analyst in Tehran as opposed to an FSB employee in St. Petersburg?)

Philadelphia Inquirer:

The officials did not lay out specific evidence for how they came to pinpoint Iran, but the activities attributed to Tehran would mark a significant escalation for a country some cybersecurity experts regard as a second-rate player in online espionage.

A top cyberthreat analyst, John Hultquist of FireEye, said the striking development marked “a fundamental shift in our understanding of Iran’s willingness to interfere in the democratic process. While many of their operations have been focused on promoting propaganda in pursuit of Iran’s interests, this incident is clearly aimed at undermining voter confidence.”

While the Associated Press piece published here by the Inquirer says “officials did not lay out specific evidence” if you read carefully through the article you will find that in fact no sort of remotely general evidence is in any way at all even alluded to. Claims are made. End of argument. Wire pieces like this are picked up by papers across the country, and published as is, but it’s not a wire service issue, as both the New York Times and Washington Post — you know, the Free World™ newspapers of record — do the same thing. Government officials make completely unsubstantiated claims. New facts are now to be debated.

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