Washington DC: US President Donald Trump criticized Facebook and Twitter Wednesday for blocking links to a New York Post article supposed to reveal corrupt dealings by election opponent Joe Biden and his son in Ukraine. The media said it had received a computer left by Hunter Biden that involved his father in his Ukraine business affairs. The former vice president, the Democratic nominee for the November 3 election has refused any such involvement.
As Biden’s campaign declined he had ever met the businessman, Facebook and Twitter placed limitations on connecting to the article, saying there were questions over its honesty.” This is part of our standard process to reduce the spread of misinformation,” said the Facebook spokesman. Twitter said it was restricting the article’s dissemination due to questions about “the origins of the materials” included in the article. Republicans were angered by what they called biased censorship. Trump, who follows Biden in polls 20 days before the presidential election, attacked the two social media giants.
“So terrible that Facebook and Twitter took down the story of ‘Smoking Gun’ Emails related to Sleepy Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, in the @NYPost,” Trump posted on Twitter.”It is only the beginning for them. There is nothing worse than a corrupt politician.”At a rally later in Iowa, Trump said his press secretary Kayleigh McEnany’s Twitter account was blocked after she shared the Post story.”Because she is reporting the truth! They close down her account,” Trump said.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey expressed regret over how Twitter communicated what it was doing with the article.”Our communication around our actions on the @nypost article was not great. And blocking URL sharing via tweet or DM with zero context as to why we’re blocking: unacceptable,” he tweeted. The New York Post said the computer had been left by Hunter Biden at a Delaware computer repair shop in April 2019.
The anonymous shop owner told the newspaper that after the computer appeared to have been forgotten, he reproduced the hard drive and gave the device to federal authorities. The shop owner handed over the hard drive copy to Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, who supplied it to the newspaper. While the Biden campaign did not reject the fact of the computer or validity of the emails on it, Giuliani has a record of scattering information about both Bidens and Ukraine.
The US Treasury said one “source” Giuliani met with several times, Ukrainian politician Andrii Derkach, “has been an active Russian agent for over a decade.”The Post criticized Facebook and Twitter for helping Biden’s election campaign, saying that no one has disputed the story’s veracity.” Facebook and Twitter are not media platforms. They’re propaganda machines,” Republican Senator Josh Hawley, in a letter to Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg, said the “seemingly selective” blocking “suggests partiality on the part of Facebook.”
The Post report, he said, is “clearly relevant to the public interest” and reveals “potentially unethical activity by a candidate for president.”Twitter’s censorship of this story is quite hypocritical, given its willingness to allow users to share less-well-sourced reporting critical of other candidates,” Republican Senator Ted Cruz said in a letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.
The story stirred criticisms from the past two years that Joe Biden, when he was in charge of the Obama administration’s Ukraine policy, took actions to help his son and the Ukrainian energy company whose board Hunter Biden sat on, Burisma. Biden has repeatedly refused such allegations. “I have never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings,” he said flatly in September 2019.
The story focused on one email from April 2015, in which a Burisma board advisor named Vadym Pozharskyi thanks Hunter for inviting him to a Washington meeting with his father. But there was no sign when the meeting was planned or whether it ever happened.”We have reviewed Joe Biden’s official plans from the time and no meeting, as stated by the New York Post, ever took place,” the Biden campaign said.
Trump’s campaign, fighting to overwhelm a steep polling deficit to Biden ahead of the election, quickly issued a campaign statement saying the emails were proof Biden “lied to the American people” about his son’s business dealings.