Israeli firm pitched social media manipulation to Trump campaign

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However, there is no evidence Gates implemented any of the Psy-Group ideas, which Gates initially heard about during a March 2016 meeting with Republican consultant George Birnbaum, who has close ties to Israeli intelligence officials.

Rick Gates, a Trump campaign official, requested proposals from an Israeli company to create fake online profiles and gather intelligence against Republican opponents and Hillary Clinton in 2016, according to The New York Times.

"The work began as Russians were escalating their effort to aid Donald J. Trump", the Times reported Tuesday.

The Times reports that the Israeli company's pitches appear unconnected to Moscow's interference campaign.

The campaign official, Rick Gates, sought one proposal to use bogus personas to target and sway 5,000 delegates to the 2016 Republican National Convention by attacking Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, Mr. Trump's main opponent at the time. The plans included numerous codenames, jargon, and password-protected documents. Donald Trump was known as "Lion" Cruz was "Bear" and Clinton was referred to as "Forest".

However, Trump and some of his conservative allies in Congress have alleged that the Clinton campaign, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Justice conspired to tie the Trump campaign to the Russian government's actions.

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There doesn't seem to be evidence that the Trump campaign actually followed through with any of these campaigns, however.

This, despite the fact that The New York Times' report explicitly states there is now no evidence to prove that the Trump campaign retained Psy-Group's services.

The firm also suggested building "intelligence dossiers".

According to The New York Times, Psy-Group's owner, Joel Zamel, met with Trump Jr to propose "Project Rome". This special counsel is investigating Russia's role in the 2016 election and whether the Trump campaign colluded in those efforts.

The special counsel's office indicted Manafort and Gates previous year on multiple charges of financial fraud and tax evasion.

Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating whether or not Trump conspired with Russian Federation during the election, and his team of investigators have obtained these proposals and have questioned Psy-Group employees, according to The New York Times. She is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and has a background in electrical engineering.

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