Operations to shape consists of various long-term military engagements, security cooperation, and deterrence tasks, missions, and actions. Shaping activities help counter actions by adversaries that challenge the stability of a nation or region contrary to U.S. interests. Ultimately, operations to shape focuses on four pillars:
Promoting and protecting U.S. national interests and influence.
Building partner capacity and partnerships.
Recognizing and countering adversary attempts to gain positions of relative advantage.
Setting conditions to win future conflicts (Department of the Army, 2017a).
Shaping activities that promote and protect U.S. national interests are accomplished through a variety of missions, tasks, and actions. They are often focused on understanding and influencing human perceptions. By influencing regional perceptions and improving the ability of partner nations to secure themselves through unilateral security partnerships and regional alliances, Army forces can isolate adversaries and prevent behaviors that run counter to U.S. interests.
Over the past several weeks, there has been an influx of articles detailing the “threat to our democracy” regarding the “harassment election officials are receiving due to Donald Trump’s big lie.” Most recently, in Fredericksburg, Texas a county completely shut down their elections office due to alleged threats of harassment of the election administrator and officials.
FREDERICKSBURG , Texas — Part of why Terry Hamilton says he abruptly left his job running elections deep in Texas wine country is by now a familiar story in America: He became fed up with the harassment that followed the 2020 election.But this was no ordinary exit.On the brink of November’s midterm elections, it was not just Hamilton who up and quit this month but also the only other full-time election worker in rural Gillespie County. The sudden emptying of an entire local elections department came less than 70 days before voters start casting ballots.
FREDERICKSBURG , Texas — Part of why Terry Hamilton says he abruptly left his job running elections deep in Texas wine country is by now a familiar story in America: He became fed up with the harassment that followed the 2020 election.
But this was no ordinary exit.
On the brink of November’s midterm elections, it was not just Hamilton who up and quit this month but also the only other full-time election worker in rural Gillespie County. The sudden emptying of an entire local elections department came less than 70 days before voters start casting ballots.
On August 3rd, 2022 a senate hearing was held over the “threats to elections officials” where Jocelyn Benson spoke at. Benson asked for senates help stating “we cannot have a secure democracy, if we do not protect the security of the people running our elections . In this hearing, the senators inquired over the newly formed Election Threat Task Force, what was learnt:
The task force has reviewed over 1,000 contacts reported as hostile or harassing by the election community.
Approximately 11% of those contacts met the threshold for a federal criminal investigation. The remaining reported contacts did not provide a predication for a federal criminal investigation. While many of the contacts were often hostile, harassing, and abusive towards election officials, they did not include a threat of unlawful violence.
In investigations where the source of a reported contact was identified, in 50% of the matters the source contacted the victim on multiple occasions. These investigations accordingly encompassed multiple contacts. The number of individual investigations is less than 5% of the total number of reported contacts.
The task force has charged four federal cases and joined another case that was charged prior to the establishment of the task force. There have also been multiple state prosecutions to date. The task force anticipates additional prosecutions in the near future.
Election officials in states with close elections and postelection contests were more likely to receive threats. 58% of the total of potentially criminal threats were in states that underwent 2020 post-election lawsuits, recounts, and audits, such as Arizona, Georgia, Colorado, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Nevada, and Wisconsin.
Only 5 cases of actual harassment were actually indicted, the threats were just of verbal harassment.
$13.6 million had been put towards this newly formed DOJ Task Force
After this senate hearing, more articles started to come out over “the threat to our democracy, due to the harassment of elections officials.” Though, is this truly threat to our Democracy, or is a shaping operation being conducted on us?
The Texas Tribune is funded by left leaning billionaires John and Laura Arnold, The Gates Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the Facebook Journalism foundation. When you begin to look at the money and influence which is behind the articles, it seems to appear this is an influence operation.
Are they trying to allege that something may happen in our November elections? If so, from the facts we learnt in the senate hearings, there have been only 5 cases of threats which actually were charged, COUNTRYWIDE.
What concerns me about these articles, is the messaging surrounding Donald Trump, MAGA, and Republicans. It feels like the stage is being set for a January 6th like event when the November elections begin. We all know what is coming, and the Democrats know everything they have to lose.
Your concern is valid. We must remain skeptical of the press.