Conspiracy Theories

Jill Stein is now warning people to be on the lookout for ‘false flag attacks’

Jill Stein has a history of playing footsies with quackery. During the 2016 election, she pandered to the pseudoscience lobby and made some eyebrow-raising comments about vaccines, saying there are “real questions” about the “toxic substances like mercury which used to be rampant in vaccines” that need to be answered.

Stein, who often touts her past as a medical doctor, should know that those questions have already been answered. But instead, she chose to regurgitate classic anti-vaccine tropes. But why stop there when you can reinforce the fears of parents who think that wi-fi will give their kids cancer? Stein was happy to oblige. But don’t question her, because like any purveyor of quack rhetoric, she’ll just accuse you of being a paid shill.

So what’s the next logical step for Stein? Pushing “false flag” conspiracy theories, apparently.

“Trump could invade Venezuela & use 1947 Rio Treaty to claim he’s defending Colombia,” Stein tweeted this Monday. “Beware of provocations, fake news & possible false flag attacks: like in [Venezuela] 2002, when media falsely blamed Chavez after coup plotters used snipers to kill protesters.”

There’s no evidence for Stein’s claim that “coup plotters” were solely responsible for killing protesters in Venezuela back in 2002, but that doesn’t matter. Like any good disseminator of Russia propaganda, the evidence behind a claim is expendable. All one has to do is frame the “mainstream media” as part of the coup and any claim can hold weight with the impressionable.

There’s a particularly dark corner of the internet where people who identify as “anti-war” and “anti-imperialism” do nothing but promote Vladimir Putin’s foreign policy goals, and Stein seems to have gone all in with them. While the situation on Venezuela is complex, media figures who spout pro-Russian propaganda want you to believe that President Nicolas Maduro is on track to be another victim of U.S. “regime change,” much like Saddam Hussein and Gaddafi. Just like they did in regards to Syria, many of these figures have utilized the “false flag” narrative as a way to circumvent any information that comes from mainstream media that could paint the political figures/movements in a positive light.

Whether she knows it or not, that’s what Stein is doing here. She’s giving an open invitation to anyone who’s bought into the pro-Russia script on Venezuela to dismiss any event that goes against their narrative as a “false flag.” This article isn’t trying to claim Stein is a active Russian ‘agent of Russia.’ It’s simply pointing out that she’s not doing anything to dissuade people of that notion, and she’s going through the motions quite consistently.

Featured image via screen gran/PBS Newshour

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