by Sharon Rondeau
(Dec. 19, 2022) — Shortly after 11:00 AM EST, journalist Michael Shellenberger released “Twitter Files 7,” which closely follows colleague Matt Taibbi’s posting Sunday evening of a “Supplemental” to the “Twitter Files 6” he released late Friday afternoon.
Previous productions by Shellenberger, Taibbi and “The Free Press” founder Bari Weiss have shown that the FBI exerted considerable pressure on Twitter executives to suspend accounts which the Bureau claimed were purveying election “misinformation” or constituted some type of threat and that agencies of the federal government, including the FBI, were holding regular meetings with the company.
In Taibbi’s release on Friday, Twitter employees in regular contact with the FBI demonstrated through messaging that they did not always agree with the agency’s characterization and questioning of the company’s efforts to combat alleged crime or other material the FBI found objectionable, including satirical accounts with few followers.
The majority of accounts to which the FBI objected as containing “election misinformation,” however, were “handled,” or “censored,” according to internal documents made public by the journalists at the request of new Twitter CEO Elon Musk.
Former FBI General Counsel James Baker apparently provided oversight to the coordination efforts between Twitter and the FBI, internal messages show.
Musk fired Baker approximately two weeks ago after he came to believe Baker was withholding documentation from the journalists demonstrating that the federal government had been working closely with Twitter.
Hired by Twitter in June 2020, Baker had been at the crux of the FBI’s “Crossfire Hurricane” investigation into the 2016 Trump campaign which proved to have been grounded on false or unsubstantiated information.
An earlier revelation was that on January 8, 2021, Twitter executives banned then-President Donald J. Trump from the platform after acknowledging he violated none of the company’s stated policies.
Twitter managers also maintained “secret blacklists” of certain users, Weiss revealed in Twitter Files 2.
Shellenberger titled the seventh file, “The FBI & the Hunter Biden Laptop,” introducing it with, “How the FBI & intelligence community discredited factual information about Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings both after and *before* The New York Post revealed the contents of his laptop on October 14, 2020.”
“In Twitter Files #7, we present evidence pointing to an organized effort by representatives of the intelligence community (IC), aimed at senior executives at news and social media companies, to discredit leaked information about Hunter Biden before and after it was published,” Shellenberger wrote. “The story begins in December 2019 when a Delaware computer store owner named John Paul (J.P.) Mac Isaac contacts the FBI about a laptop that Hunter Biden had left with him On Dec 9, 2019, the FBI issues a subpoena for, and takes, Hunter Biden’s laptop.”
“By Aug 2020,” Shellenberger tweeted, “Mac Isaac still had not heard back from the FBI, even though he had discovered evidence of criminal activity. And so he emails Rudy Giuliani, who was under FBI surveillance at the time. In early Oct, Giuliani gives it to @nypost“.
The night before The Post published its initial story, Hunter Biden’s attorney, George Mesires, contacted Mac Isaac, Shellenberger reported, thanking Mac Isaac for “reviewing your records on this matter.”
“Hunter and Mesires had just learned from the New York Post that its story about the laptop would be published the next day,” Shellenberger added.
Approximately 80 minutes later, Shellenberger revealed, “FBI Special Agent Elvis Chan sends 10 documents to Twitter’s then-Head of Site Integrity, Yoel Roth, through Teleporter, a one-way communications channel from the FBI to Twitter.”
Roth, who is no longer at Twitter, responded to Chan with, “Received and downloaded – thanks!”
“Every single fact” in The Post‘s story, which strongly suggested then-Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden knew about, and was even involved with, his son’s overseas business ventures, “was accurate,” Shellenberger tweeted. “And yet, within hours, Twitter and other social media companies censor the NY Post article, preventing it from spreading and, more importantly, undermining its credibility in the minds of many Americans. Why is that? What, exactly, happened?”
Apparently answering his own question, he then tweeted, “Since then, we have discovered new info that points to an organized effort by the Intel community to influence Twitter & other platforms”.
The Post & Email will continue its reporting on Shellenberger’s new revelations in a follow-on article.