Artem Klyushin has gained a lot of notoriety on social media. Many believe that he’s been giving Russian directives to Donald Trump by tweet. As a matter of fact, Klyushin has claimed to be doing that very thing. We decided to look a bit deeper at Klyushin and his claims. We found that things aren’t what they appear to be.
Who Is Artem Klyushin?
Artem Klyushin has been a Putin sycophant since his youth, when he spent time at Seliger, the Russian State-backed Youth Camp.
As a young adult he became a Russian State employee and now works in the office of Russia’s Minister of Culture, Vladimir Medinsky.
Klyushin’s “job” appears to center around social media, propaganda, and documenting events he attends. Notably, Klyushin refers to journalists as his “colleagues.”
Klyushin appears to be well-connected, though. He’s friends with:
> Emin Agalarov, singer and oligarch off-spring who contacted Don Jr. for the Trump Tower Meeting
> Konstantin Rykov, wealthy Russian propagandist
> Prigozhin, popular music producer
And is famously known now, Klyushin and his wife at the time, Yulia, attended the meetings and festivities surrounding Trump’s 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Russia.
Is Klyushin Directing Donald Trump on Twitter?
Does being a Putin sycophant and hobnobbing with Russian oligarchs earn a Russian State employee the power to send directives to one of Russia’s most formidable opponents, though? Klyushin has gained exactly that reputation on Twitter. And while Klyushin seems to want us to believe he’s issuing directives to Donald Trump, is he really? Or, are we being played?
Let’s look at the facts.
Klyushin said Trump should meet with Kim Jung Un in Vietnam
On Jan. 24, 2019, Klyushin tweeted to Donald Trump that the second meeting with Kim Jong Un should take place in Vietnam.
And Klyushin appears to take credit when the meeting does, in fact, take place in Vietnam.
He even goes so far as to suggest that Russia has an asset in place for the meeting.
This looks pretty bad. But, it’s without context. Importantly, before Klyushin tweeted his suggestion, Vietnam had already been announced as the likely meeting place for the next USA-North Korea summit. Six days before Klyushin’s tweet, Nikkei: Asian Review published this article:
This tweet from Bloomberg was four days before Klyushin’s January 24 “suggestion.”
As a matter of fact, it was all over the news. Here’s a similar article from January 20, 2019 Time.
Given all of the news about the location of Trump’s meeting with Un by January 20, 2019, it would take an incredible leap of logic to believe Klyushin “directed” the location of the meeting on January 24, 2019.
Did Klyushin Foretell Kelly’s Departure from the White House?
John Kelly’s exit from the White House is another incident that appeared to some as if Klyushin was directing Trump. On December 7, 2018, Klyushin tweeted to Trump that John Kelly should “retire.”
The next day, the White House officially announced that Trump was getting rid of Kelly.
Was this sorcery? Inside knowledge? Was it a directive from Putin? Or, like first example, was Klyushin using American news to make it appear as if he were doling out directives to Trump?
A closer look reveals that there had been a great deal of public discussion about Kelly’s dismissal prior to Artem Klyushin’s tweet.
Approximately three weeks before Klyushin’s tweet about Kelly, the AP reported that Trump was waffling on his promise to keep Kelly on staff.
Even more notable, however, is that just a couple of hours before Klyushin tweeted his “suggestion” (Dec. 7, 2018 at 10:31AM CST), a new rift between Trump and Kelly had caused the two men to quit speaking to each other—and it had already flooded the national and local news.
Rather than Klyushin “directing” Trump to get rid of Kelly, Klyushin’s December 7th tweet appears to have been nothing more than regurgitated news.
Artem Klyushin Declares “Heather Nauert” should be Nikki Haley’s Replacement
This Klyushin stunt received a lot of social media attention. November 2, 2018 (well before Heather Nauert was selected as UN Ambassador to replace Nikki Haley), Klyushin tweeted this:
Jump ahead to December 6, 2018—and Nauert is exactly whom Trump chose to fill the UN Ambassador position.
This is another case where looks can be deceiving. The previous year, Heather—a host of Fox & Friends, one of Trump’s favorite shows—had applied for and received the job of State Department Spokesperson.
Not long after receiving the job, Heather got in a bit of hot water for her previous exuberance in supporting the Trump family businesses. She eventually deleted the tweets. Credit: @AndrewKirell for the Nauert tweet screenshots.
While in her position as State Department Spokesperson, Nauert clearly supported Trump’s talking points.
But most importantly, the news that Nauert was “under serious consideration” for UN Ambassador (replacing Nikki Haley) was made public the day before Artem’s November 2, 2018 tweet.
Again, we have a case where the very thing Klyushin supposedly “directed” was public knowledge prior to his “directive.”
Klyushin’s “Plan” for American Troop Withdrawal from Afghanistan
On August 19, 2018 Klyushin posted a lengthy Afghanistan “plan” for Trump that included troop withdrawals. The plan also included Erik Prince and his mercenaries.
Klyushin retweeted this thread on December 20, 2018—with another wink emoji.
How was Klyushin able to come up with so much detailed “advice” for Trump unless it was from the Kremlin?
Let’s start with this.
The White House’s desire for troop withdrawal in Afghanistan was public knowledge for a year prior to Klyushin’s Afghanistan thread.
And it was a continuous talking point.
But what about Erik Prince and the contractors? There was so much detail. Where could Artem have gotten all that info?
He got it from American news.
Just two days before Artem’s “plan” was laid out, Erik Prince gave a news interview describing his plan for Afghanistan. Klyushin simply regurgitated Prince’s words two days later.
Artem Klyushin Suggests Declaring a State of Emergency to Fund the Wall
On January 10, 2019, Klyushin tweeted that Trump should declare a state of emergency to get funding for “the wall.”
Just over a month later, on February 14, Trump announced that he planned to declare a state of emergency to fund the wall.
Not surprisingly, Klyushin took credit for the idea.
Contrary to what Klyushin would like us to believe, however, six days before Artem’s “state of emergency to build the wall” thread, Trump had announced that he might do exactly that. It was already public knowledge by the time Klyushin had his “idea.”
But—again—Klyushin’s January 10, 2019 thread was so detailed. Klyushin even discussed how President Truman tried to use an emergency declaration to nationalize steel mills during the Korean War—but was struck down by the Supreme Court.
How on earth could that be anything except an original idea?
This is how.
Just two days prior to Klyushin’s thread, NBC News ran this article contemplating Trump’s assertion that he might declare a state of emergency to fund his “wall.” This article took a look at American history to determine whether or not there was precedence for such a case.
The words from this article are almost verbatim to Klyushin’s tweet two days later.
When the news doesn’t pan out for Klyushin
It is also important to note that Klyushin’s “directives” don’t always work out.
On Jan. 11, 2019, Klyushin tweeted a disturbing message that could be construed as a threat against Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
On the same day, he retweeted that message to Trump with a “suggested” replacement for Ginsburg once Ginsburg’s seat was available on the Supreme Court.
Now, it had never been a secret that Trump wanted Justice Ginsburg off the Supreme Court. On the contrary, he was quite clear about it—even before the 2016 election.
But how did Klyushin come up with Barrett’s name as a suggestion in the first place? Let’s see if Klyushin truly had inside information—or if he read something about it in the American media.
On November 17, 2017, the White House announced additions to potential Supreme Court picks. At the top of the list—Amy Coney Barrett. (Note: Klyushin misspelled Barrett’s Name.)
And, as with Klyushin’s other “suggestions,” American news was discussing Ginsburg’s replacement before Klyushin tweeted about it. The day before, in this case. This is from Jan. 10, 2019. Note that Barrett is identified as the “leading contender” to replace Ginsburg.
Though Klyushin’s Ginsburg tweet fit the pattern of American news preceding his “directives,” this particular attempt at a directive was wrong. Justice Ginsburg is far tougher and brighter than either the Russians or Trump ever expected.
Separating the Wheat from the Chaff
For every “prediction” we checked, we found public domain information that preceded Klyushin’s tweet about it. Usually by just one or two days. And much of it was nearly word-for-word. This strongly suggests that Klyushin simply reads American news, regurgitates what is being predicted, and then claims those predictions as his own. Duplicitous, yes. Powerful, no.
With the mass of disinformation Americans face on social media daily, it can be difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff. But, in this case, it seems reasonable to conclude that Artem Klyushin is mostly chaff.
What’s Klyushin’s game? It’s hard to say. One thing is certain, however. Russia has done (and continues to do) enough damage to our democracy. Granting them more credit than they deserve only furthers their cause. It’s well past time that we start holding them accountable for what they are actually doing while not allowing ourselves to be distracted by their sleights-of-hand.
Written by Unhackthevote
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