(RepublicanWire.org) – The former head of a new “disinformation” panel that fell under the Department of Homeland Security is blaming the Biden administration after the project was shelved.
Nina Jankowicz, who was slated to head up the Disinformation Governance Board, told CNN’s Brian Stelter that the administration did not do enough to defend her reputation. In addition, she accused the White House of essentially muzzling her so she could not speak on her own behalf.
DHS announced the formation of the board in late April. Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas went on to defend the panel against attacks from Republicans who labeled it an Orwellian “Ministry of Truth.”
In her interview, she told Stelter that the board was supposed “to bring best practices to bear, and to make sure that we were up with the latest research, the latest trends, in disinformation and countering it and make sure that work was being done in a way that protected freedom of speech, protected civil rights, civil liberties, and privacy.”
“So, the sympathetic view, to you, is that the Disinformation Board was the victim of disinformation. Is that how you feel?” Stelter asked in response.
Jankowicz went on to blame Republicans.
“Oh, it absolutely was the victim of disinformation,” she said. “So, all of these narratives, that the Disinformation Governance Board was going to be this ‘Ministry of Truth,’ and all of the harassment and disinformation that was directed against me, was based on that falsehood, based on that falsehood that was knowingly peddled by many people in the conservative media ecosystem and on Capitol Hill.”
At that point, Stelter asked why DHS did not more vociferously defend Jankowicz if, in fact, the criticisms were wrong.
“Yeah, I have a lot of misgivings about the way things went down and I think the first thing to point out, Brian, is that there was a disproportionate focus on me, given my level of power within the department,” she said.
“I was not allowed to speak on my own behalf, and frankly, all the communications decisions that were being made about how to talk about the board were made above my pay grade, and above my level of decision-making,” Jankowicz said. “I was the executive director, but there were a lot of people that were involved that didn’t take advice frankly that I had given them.”
For his part, Stelter gave some pushback.
“Look, I would start with the name,” he said. “Even just the name, right, Nina, it sounds Orwellian. And any PR professional would say don’t call it that, you know? There were just dumb mistakes made.”
The name “belies the fact that it was meant to be an internal governing mechanism, governing how the Department of Homeland Security did its work on disinformation, not governing the internet,” she explained before once again appearing to blame the administration.
“And that was one of the reasons that I ended up making the choice to resign, right?” Jankowicz said. “I felt like the government had just rolled over, to the critics, who had completely spun this narrative out of control based on absolutely nothing and reality and the fact that they weren’t able to defend me, the person that they had chosen, the experts that they had chosen to lead this board and safeguard this work.
“It just didn’t feel like it was worth it, especially given the fact that my family was receiving threats,” she claimed.
In fact, many criticisms of Jankowicz from Republicans noted how she had dismissed factual information in the past as “disinformation” because it appeared to implicate Democrats.
That included the contents of Hunter Biden’s laptop when incriminating evidence was first published by the New York Post in the weeks leading up to the 2020 election.
Jankowicz, who is supposed to be an expert in disinformation, proclaimed, “We should view it as a Trump campaign product,” adding that it likely had “illicit provenance” — a reference to Russian propaganda.