Home/The State of the Union/Susan Rice Suggests Russians Fomented Floyd Protests, Violence Across U.S.

Susan Rice Suggests Russians Fomented Floyd Protests, Violence Across U.S.

Obama's former national security adviser offered no evidence for her bizarre claim.

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13: US Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice speaks to the media following Security Council consolations over the situation in North Korea April 13, 2012 in New York City. There has been condemnation from United States and countries in the region over North Korea's failed long-range missile launch. The Security Council will also address the ongoing situation in Syria later in the day. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

President Barack Obama’s former national security adviser Susan Rice suggested without evidence that the Russians could be behind the violent demonstrations that have taken place across the U.S. following the death of George Floyd.

Speaking to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Sunday, Rice said:

“We have peaceful protesters focused on the very real pain and disparities that we’re all wrestling with that have to be addressed, and then we have extremists who’ve come to try to hijack those protests and turn them into something very different. And they’re probably also, I would bet based on my experience, I’m not reading the intelligence these days, but based on my experience this is right out of the Russian playbook as well.”

“I would not be surprised to learn that they have fomented some of these extremists on both sides using social media. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that they are funding it in some way, shape, or form.”

Rice admits she’s not reading the intelligence anymore, so what makes her think the Russians are behind this?

She doesn’t offer much more in the way of evidence for her assertion, other than that the Russians are the Democrats’ always-present bogeyman, ever ready from behind their poorly translated social media posts to unleash mayhem upon the U.S.

Ever since the election of President Donald Trump, Democrats have blamed Russians for the outcome of the 2016 election.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller found evidence that Russian-linked accounts spent a small amount of money placing social media ads for the purpose of influencing the 2016 election, but there’s nothing to suggest their efforts were successful. The Department of Justice abruptly dropped its prosecution of a Russian-based troll farm, days before trial. Mueller also did not find evidence that the Trump campaign conspired with Russia during the 2016 election.

Although the claims of Russian “collusion” in the 2016 election were eventually found to be nearly totally baseless, Rice’s new narrative, that Russians support 2020’s post-Floyd rioting, appears to be even more fact-threadbare.

Rice’s claim drew criticism from across the political spectrum.

Eoin Higgens, a senior editor at Common Dreams, tweeted “you cannot make this sh– up. F—- deranged” while former U.S. attorney Andrew McCarthy tweeted “there she goes again.”

There’s a reason Rice’s claim was not taken seriously — besides the lack of evidence for the Russian meddling narrative that has dominated the nation’s political life since 2016, there’s also the sheer ineptitude of the actual Russian trolling and ads themselves.

Just look at this ad the Russians funded from the 2016 election cycle for a taste of how convincing those Russians and their social media campaigns can be:

Screen capture courtesy of USA Today, provided by the House Intelligence Committee. May, 2018.

about the author

Barbara Boland is TAC’s foreign policy and national security reporter. Previously, she worked as an editor for the Washington Examiner and for CNS News. She is the author of Patton Uncovered, a book about General George Patton in World War II, and her work has appeared on Fox News, The Hill UK Spectator, and elsewhere. Boland is a graduate from Immaculata University in Pennsylvania.  Follow her on Twitter @BBatDC.

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