These 30 Facebook ads were shared by Russian trolls just days before the 2016 election — some are so subtle, you probably didn’t realize they were ads

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg hearing Congress Senate
AP

Last Thursday, Congress released 3,500 Facebook ads planted by Russian operatives who planned to create divisions among Americans in the year leading up to the 2016 presidential election.

To the average Facebook user, the ads — paid for by the Russian troll farm Internet Research Agency (IRA) — weren’t easily distinguishable from the rest. Some were directly about the election, but most of the ads were more subtle, created to appeal to people’s race, religion, or other aspects of their personal lives.

In October, the House Intelligence Committee Democrats shared a handful of the ads with the public. This time, it released all of the ads that ran on Facebook and Instagram from June 2015 to August 2017, to give Facebook users a more comprehensive look at the ads they’ve been hearing about for almost a year.

Here are some of the ads Russians created on Facebook, specifically in the week leading up to the election:

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