On Wednesday, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it would be officially terminating its Disinformation Governance Board.
"The Department welcomes the recommendations of the Homeland Security Advisory Council, which has concluded that countering disinformation that threatens the homeland, and providing the public with accurate information in response, is critical to fulfilling the Department’s missions. We thank the Subcommittee for its work, which required extensive fact gathering and analysis over a short period of time," a statement from the DHS read.
"In accordance with the HSAC’s prior recommendation, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas has terminated the Disinformation Governance Board and rescinded its charter effective today, August 24, 2022.
"With the HSAC recommendations as a guide, the Department will continue to address threat streams that undermine the security of our country consistent with the law, while upholding the privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties of the American people and promoting transparency in our work," the statement concluded.
In its report, the Homeland Security Advisory Council recommended that "It is Imperative that DHS Address Inaccurate Information that Undermines its Critical Missions."
It also noted though, that "the Department of Homeland Security does not have a broad remit to address all inaccurate information or disinformation, nor does it have the authority to silence or sanction anyone’s speech. Rather, its efforts should focus on (a) assessing whether publicly disseminated disinformation impedes missions assigned to the agency by law and (b) disseminating correct information."
The council recommended that the DHS’ Office of Intelligence and Analysis should serve as the "principle channel for obtaining disinformation warning from the US Intelligence Community and from other entities," rather than through the Disinformation Governance Board.
"We previously recommended to the full Council—and the Council has accepted our recommendation—that there is no need for a separate Disinformation Governance Board. But it is our assessment that the underlying work of Department components on this issue is critical. The Department must be able to address the disinformation threat streams that can undermine the security of our homeland," the report read.
The board was announced back in April, and was going to be headed by Nina Jankowicz. The board quickly came under fire, being dubbed the "Ministry of Truth," with many saying that the objective of the board was to regulate free speech in the Untied States.
Around a month later, after commentators and lawmakers slammed the board, the Biden administration announced that it would be pausing the board, with Jankowicz drafting a resignation the following morning.
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