On June 28th, 2016, Melvin Redick of Harrisburg, PA made a post on FaceBook that told people that they could find "the hidden truth" about Hillary Clinton on a website called DCLeaks. Upon going there, which thousands of FaceBook users did, they read really shocking details of Hillary's evil deeds.
Melvin Redick doesn't exist. And the terrible story about Hillary was a complete fabrication. Melvin Redick and the DCLeaks website were both inventions of the Russian FSB, the successor of the Soviet KGB, which Vladimir Putin was head of before he became President of the Russian Federation.
These posts, thousands of them, all made to look like real interactions by real people, were generated by a type of software called a 'bot' - short for 'robot.' One hundred and twenty-five million Americans saw the FaceBook posts of these Russian bots. And every one relentlessly repeated the same message: "Hillary would be worse."
Psychologists have long known that, if you repeat a lie often enough, it comes to be viewed as true by gullible voters - "low information voters," as they're euphemistically known. It means "ignorant." They're the target of bots. How many changed their vote because of these fraudulent bot posts? It wouldn't have to be many: 72,000 votes would have flipped the election.
Bots aren't hard to create. There's a "Bot Construction Kit" that you can download free from the Microsoft website. A high-school class could use it to duplicate what the Russian FSB hackers did. It would be a cool project. It would show students exactly how they did it. The government is looking to hire thousands of smart young people who can do battle with the hackers that our enemies are marshalling against our country. It's a job creator.
And it would show them beyond the shadow of a doubt that our enemies did their best to get Donald Trump elected President. Did their efforts swing the election? Your guess is as good as mine, but we're probably guessing the same thing.
Why did the Russians want Trump to be elected President of the United States? Was that the best way they could think of to damage our international stature, our faith in our institutions, and our children's future? I don't know; I can only show you how they did it.