This article has been clarified to correctly state Thomson Reuters Foundation’s relation to Reuters newswire service. Thomson Reuters Foundation is the charitable arm of the Thomson Reuters news conglomerate, but says it operates entirely independently from Reuters News and is a separate legal entity from both Thomson Reuters and Reuters.
Among a tranche of secret UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) files recently leaked by hacktivist collective Anonymous are papers indicating that Thomson Reuters Foundation (TRF) – the “charitable” arm of the Thomson Reuters news conglomerate – has engaged in information warfare initiatives on behalf of Whitehall.
These endeavors form part of a wider effort to demonize, destabilize, and isolate Russia, at home and abroad. At Whitehall’s direction, TRF has covertly cultivated Russian journalists, established influence networks within and outside Russia, and promoted pro-Whitehall, anti-Moscow propaganda in Russian-speaking regions.
These activities have been comprehensively exposed by journalist Max Blumenthal. TRF tenders for the projects submitted to the FCDO were signed by its CEO Monique Villa, former managing director of Reuters Media and now adviser to Thomson Reuters’ CEO, suggesting the company itself is directly involved in the cloak-and-dagger operations of its ‘non-profit’ offshoot at the highest levels.
Moreover though, the Foundation’s submissions also reveal the insidious role it has played in furthering London’s financial, geopolitical, and ideological objectives elsewhere in the world.