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Paul Mason’s covert intelligence-linked plot to destroy The Grayzone exposed

Leaked emails reveal British journalist Paul Mason plotting with an intel contractor to destroy The Grayzone through “relentless deplatforming” and a “full nuclear legal” attack. The scheme is part of a wider planned assault on the UK left.
 
by Kit Klarenberg and Max Blumenthal

Part 1

A former Trotskyist and BBC journeyman, journalist Paul Mason has made a career as the establishment’s favorite gatekeeper of the UK left. Since the Russian military incursion into Ukraine, he has cemented his position as one of Britain’s most vocal “left” cheerleaders for Western military intervention.

While leading a “U.K. left” delegation to Kiev and a demonstration through the streets of London in support of NATO military escalation against Russia, Mason has accordingly used his platform to assail journalists, academics, Labour party members and private citizens who oppose shipping piles of advanced weaponry to Ukraine. 

In a series of recent columns, Mason called for the state-enforced suppression of facts and perspectives he considers overly sympathetic to the Kremlin, and demanded “state action” against members of the media that oppose the NATO line on Ukraine. He placed The Grayzone at the top of his fantasy censorship target list.

Mason has since announced a run for parliament on the Labour ticket to wage his crusade against “disinformation” from inside the House of Commons.

The Grayzone, meanwhile, has learned through anonymously leaked emails and documents that Mason has been engaged in a malicious secret campaign that aims to enlist the British state and “friendly” intelligence cut-outs to undermine, censor and even criminalize antiwar dissenters.

In one leaked email, Mason thundered for the “relentless deplatforming” of The Grayzone and the creation of “a kind of permanent rebuttal operation” to discredit it.

In another, the celebrity journalist declared that “the far left rogue academics is who I’m after,” then rants that he is motivated by fear of an emergent “left anti imperialist identity” which “will be attractive because liberalism doesn’t know how to counter it.

Mason is joined in his covert crusade by Amil Khan, the founder of a shadowy intelligence contractor called Valent Projects. In the cache of leaked emails, Khan proposed to Mason the initiation of a “clever John Oliver style stunt that makes [The Grayzone] a laughing stock,” as well as a “full nuclear legal to squeeze them financially.

The Grayzone has previously revealed Khan’s extensive involvement in the Syrian dirty war, during which he provided public relations guidance to jihadist groups, trained anti-government activists in communication strategies, and secretly oversaw supposed citizen journalist collectives backed by foreign governments. His goal was to flood international media with pro-opposition propaganda, destabilize the government of Bashar Assad, and ready the ground for Western regime change.

This ethically dubious work was conducted for a variety of intelligence-adjacent British Foreign Office contractors, such as ARK, a firm founded by probable MI6 operative Alistair Harris, and IncoStrat, which has been plausibly accused of producing propaganda for the blood-stained UK and Saudi-backed insurgents.

After leaving the Middle East, Khan reinvented himself as an expert in countering “disinformation”, and has since charged a number of blue chip clients a premium for his dubious services. As this outlet reported, the same techniques of manipulation and information warfare that Khan honed in Syria were turned against Western citizens when he oversaw a British quasi-state funded astroturf YouTube project designed to counter public skepticism of Covid-related restrictions.

Khan’s email communications with Mason illustrate the grudge he has harbored since The Grayzone exposed his devious exploits. In the missives, he descends into self-delusion, insisting this outlet’s factual reporting was, in fact, state-sponsored retaliation for his crusading work “opposing military dictators and kleptocrats.”

Together, Khan and Mason plotted to assemble a coalition of anti-Grayzone actors, including the US and UK government-funded “open source” outlet Bellingcat, which Mason revealingly described as a channel for “intel service input by proxy.” Khan proposed convening the de facto Victims of Grayzone Memorial Foundation at an in-person summit to “come up with a plan that addresses [The Grayzone’s] objectives and vulnerabilities.

At one point, a member of their coalition embedded inside the UK Foreign Office reached out across the Atlantic for advice from Nina Jankowicz, the disgraced former head of the Department of Homeland Security’s Disinformation Governance Board.

It is uncertain how Mason and Khan became acquainted, but their mutual coincidence of needs, motives and vendettas is obvious. The public interest in releasing the pair’s private communications is also abundantly clear. If their planned criminalization of The Grayzone for publishing facts and opinions they abhor is successful, it will have dire ramifications for any and all journalists and independent media institutions seeking to challenge the status quo.

When approached by The Grayzone, Paul Mason declined to comment on the incriminating correspondence with Khan, and claimed to have informed local police that “an attempt was made” to hack his email account. While dismissing the leaked content as “likely to be edited, distorted or fake,” he went on to pledge he would “not cease to identify and rebut Russian disinformation operations masquerading as journalism.

In other words, Mason implied he plans to carry on with the very activity exposed in the leaked emails.

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