It’s clear from the testimony of internet companies that Russian interests were attempting to influence public opinion via social media to an extent no one expected. The content itself, however, has largely been a mystery — the ads and fake accounts have long been taken down. But Facebook delivered them to Congress as part of an ongoing inquiry into the effect of Russia’s meddling, and the House’s Intelligence Committee has posted a handful ahead of its hearing tomorrow.
The striking thing about these ads is how banal they are; “election interference” sounds very cloak-and-dagger, but the effort here is very clearly more subtle than that. Click through for examples of how the effort aimed not just to discredit a candidate (though Clinton was reliably the target), but to hammer in wedges and foment division on existing issues.