National Security Subcommittee Seeks Classified Briefing on Foreign Interference in Racial Justice Protests
Washington, D.C. (June 16, 2020)—Today, Rep. Stephen F. Lynch, the Chairman of the Subcommittee on National Security, sent a letter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) requesting a classified briefing on how foreign adversaries may seek to exploit recent demonstrations protesting racial inequality in the U.S. criminal justice system to sow political and cultural division.
“I am deeply concerned that foreign adversaries may exploit this critical moment in American history to exacerbate social and cultural differences across the American political spectrum and ultimately threaten our national security,” Chairman Lynch wrote.
Since the murder of George Floyd, multiple foreign actors have reportedly sought to exploit the ensuing protests around the country. For example, Chinese and Russian-backed media outlets and Twitter users have increasingly piggybacked onto social media hashtags to push divisive messages and criticize the United States’ handling of the protests. As of June 1, 2020, Chinese Foreign Ministry officials, Russian-backed news outlets, and others with ties to Russia and China have tweeted more than 1,200 times about U.S. protests using hashtags such as #BlackLivesMatter and #Minneapolis.
“As the United States responds to the coronavirus pandemic and the underlying faults of our criminal justice system, we must come together as a nation to affirm that our struggle to form a more perfect union is ours as Americans, and ours alone. Foreign adversaries cannot, and must not, be allowed to interfere, influence, or undermine the integrity of our democracy,” added Lynch.
Click here to read the letter to the FBI.