Originally published at National Justice.
A far left activist who came to be known for his work at Right Wing Watch is now a researcher at the Atlantic Council, a prominent NATO think-tank.
Jared Holt, who extremism researchers such as Dr Eoin Lenihan have previously linked to the “antifa” movement — a group of loosely organized anarchists and communists who believe in the use of violence and institutional censorship to silence opposing political views — is featured as a fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab.
While Holt has never publicly confirmed or denied his links to the anarchist movement, he found himself immersed in controversy last year when it emerged that self-described “antifa” activist Connor Betts, who killed 10 people in a shooting spree at a Dayton, Ohio bar, repeatedly interacted with him on social media.
For years, Holt used the power allocated to him by the George Soros financed People for the American Way, the umbrella NGO overseeing Right Wing Watch, to “deplatform” conservatives and nationalists while also helping mainstream left-wing extremist ideology.
According to the Atlantic Council’s research project, its mission is “To identify, expose, and explain disinformation where and when it occurs using open source research; to promote objective truth as a foundation of government for and by people; to protect democratic institutions and norms from those who would seek to undermine them in the digital engagement space,” in other words, NATO’s Ministry of Truth.
Holt, who has no relevant qualifications or skills, seems to have been appointed purely due to his activism and ideology. Bob Haas, the Jewish heir to the Levi Strauss jeans fortune, helps fund Right Wing Watch as a trustee of both the Ford Foundation and the Evelyn Haas and Walter Haas Jr Fund. Haas is a prominent neo-liberal who holds membership at NATO-linked organizations such as the Council on Foreign Relations and Brookings Institute.
The employees at the Atlantic Council’s project appear to be mostly young cosmopolitans from elite families. NATO’s eagerness to deputize Holt, whose only experience is in silencing right-wing, nationalist and populist ideas, as one of its future tecno-dystopian information ministers represents an ever yawning gap between neo-liberal institutions and the ordinary citizens of the West.