Tag Archives: Russiagate

Russiagate Is No Watergate, by Patrick J. Buchanan

Unlike Russiagate, Watergate featured actual crimes from the president. From Patrick J. Buchanan at buchanan.org:

“History is repeating itself, and with a vengeance,” John Dean told the judiciary committee, drawing a parallel between Watergate, which brought down Richard Nixon, and “Russiagate” which has bedeviled Donald Trump.

But what strikes this veteran of Nixon’s White House is not the similarities but the stark differences.

Watergate began with an actual crime, a midnight break-in at the offices of the DNC in June 1972 to wiretap phones and filch files, followed by a cover-up that spread into the inner circles of the White House.

Three years after FBI Director James Comey began the investigation of Trump, however, the final report of his successor, Robert Mueller, found there had been no conspiracy, no collusion and no underlying crime.

How can Trump be guilty of covering up a crime the special counsel says he did not commit?

And the balance of power today in D.C. is not as lopsided as it was in 1973-1974.

During Watergate, Nixon had little support in a city where the elites, the press, the Democratic Congress and the liberal bureaucracy labored in earnest to destroy him. Nixon had few of what Pat Moynihan called “second and third echelons of advocacy.”

Contrast this with Trump, a massive presence on social media, whose tweets, daily interactions with the national press and rallies keep his enemies constantly responding to his attacks rather than making their case.

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Bipartisan Support for Trump’s Aggressive Iran Policy Reveals the Hollowness of Russiagate, by Whitney Webb

Russia, the US’s supposed mortal enemy, would be a big winner if the US went to war with Iran. That isn’t stopping any of the usual suspects from pushing for war with Iran. From Whitney Webb at mintpressnew.com:

While Russia often serves as a useful “boogeyman” for promoting militaristic policies, the odd moments when those same policies actually benefit Russia and avoid strong opposition from U.S. politicians and media provide a rare glimpse into the real motivations behind Cold War 2.0.

In early May, MSNBC news host Rachel Maddow — known as one of the top promoters of the new Cold War and Russiagate in American media — emphatically endorsed regime change in Venezuela after she claimed that President Donald Trump’s hawkishness towards the South American country had changed, all because of a single phone call with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

Though Maddow’s claims were arguably the most extreme in suggesting that Trump was “taking orders” from Putin on Venezuela, she wasn’t alone in making them. For instance, Cenk Uygur of the Young Turks also made the claim that the Trump-Putin phone call on Venezuela was “direct evidence that he is literally taking orders from Putin.” In addition, several corporate media outlets supported this narrative by suggesting that Trump “echoed” Putin’s Venezuela stance after the phone call and directly contradicted his top staffers and even himself in doing so.

Yet now, strangely, those same corporate media voices remain silent on the Trump administration’s other regime-change project — in Iran — despite the fact that the Putin-led Russian government is set to be the biggest winner as tensions between the U.S. and the Islamic Republic boil over and threaten to send the Middle East into a fresh bout of destruction and chaos.

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This Talk Between Aaron & Gabor Maté Is The Best Political Video I’ve Ever Seen, by Caitlin Johnstone

Why do people hold so tenaciously to demonstrably untrue ideas? From Caitlin Johnstone at caitlinjohnstone.com:

The Grayzone‘s Aaron Maté has done an interview with his father titled “America in denial: Gabor Maté on the psychology of Russiagate”, and it is the single best and most insightful political video I’ve ever seen. In 27 minutes it essentially describes the fundamental problems of our times, not just with Russiagate but with world politics as a whole, from the overarching behaviors of globe-dominating forces all the way down to the ways our own inner reluctance to face reality objectively helps to prop up those forces. So it deserves its own article.

Back when I learned that Gabor was Aaron’s father my first thought was, “That makes so much sense.” Aaron had exploded onto the Russiagate debate scene seemingly out of nowhere and quickly became the most thorough and lucid voice on the subject, holding to strict principles of valuing facts and evidence over the aggressive pressure to conform from his media peers and the authoritative assertions of government agencies. Gabor I’d known of for years because of how widely respected he is in other circles I’ve moved in for his penetrating insights into the human psyche. It makes perfect sense that someone with the moral fortitude to swim against the groupthink current and speak the truth no matter what would have someone like that as part of his personal formation.

I highly recommend watching the full interview, but since I know many of my readers aren’t big on watching videos I’ll sum up what I consider the highlights here with excerpts from the Grayzonetranscript, because I really do think it’s that good and that important.

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Russiagate Zealotry Continues to Endanger American National Security, by Stephen F. Cohen

The Russiagate myth has exploded, but that doesn’t mean Trump will no longer be boxed in on policy towards Russia. From Stephen F. Cohen at lewrockwell.com:

Now in its third year, Russiagate is the worst, most corrosive, and most fraudulent political scandal in modern American history. It rests on two related core allegations: that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an “attack on American democracy” during the 2016 presidential campaign in order to put Donald Trump in the White House, and that Trump and his associates willfully colluded, or conspired, in this Kremlin “attack.” As I have argued from the outset—see my regular commentaries posted at TheNation.com and my recent book War With Russia?—and as recently confirmed, explicitly and tacitly, by special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s report, there is no factual evidence for either allegation.

Nonetheless, these Russiagate allegations, not “Putin’s Russia,” continue to inflict grave damage on fundamental institutions of American democracy. They impugn the integrity of the presidency and now the office of the attorney general. They degrade the many Democratic members of Congress who persist in clinging to the allegations and thus the Democratic Party and Congress. And they have enticed mainstream media into one of the worst episodes of journalistic malpractice in modern times.

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Orwellian Cloud Hovers Over Russia-gate, by Ray McGovern

Virtually everyone in the mainstream from both parties accepts a central premise that most probably is wrong. From Ray McGovern at consortiumnews.com:

Ray McGovern calls out the void of evidence at the heart of the Senate hearing with Attorney General Barr on Wednesday.

George Orwell would have been in stitches Wednesday watching Attorney General William Barr and members of the Senate Judiciary Committee spar on Russia-gate.  The hearing had the hallmarks of the intentionally or naively blind leading the blind with political shamelessness.

From time to time the discussion turned to the absence of a legal “predicate” to investigate President Donald Trump for colluding with Russia.  That is, of course, important; and we can expect to hear a lot more about that in coming months.

Barr questioned by Sen. Harris, May 1. (YouTube)

More important: what remains unacknowledged is the absence of an evidence-based major premise that should have been in place to anchor the rhetoric and accusations about Russia-gate over the past three years.  With a lack of evidence sufficient to support a major premise, any syllogism falls of its own weight.

The major premise that Russia hacked into the Democratic National Committee and gave WikiLeaks highly embarrassing emails cannot bear close scrutiny. Yes, former CIA Director John Brennan has told Congress he does not “do evidence.” In the same odd vein, Brennan’s former FBI counterpart James Comey chose not to “do evidence” when he failed to seize and inspect the DNC computers that a contractor-of-ill-repute working for the DNC claimed were hacked by Russia.

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Nellie Ohr’s ‘Hi Honey’ emails to DOJ about Russia collusion should alarm us all, by John Solomon

There’s nothing fishy about the Ohrs, Bruce and Nellie, at all. From John Solomon at thehill.com:

First came the text messages between FBI lovebirds Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, which gave us a painful glimpse at potential political bias inside America’s most famous crime-fighting bureau.

Now, a series of “Hi Honey” emails from Nellie Ohr to her high-ranking federal prosecutor husband and his colleagues raise the prospect that Hillary Clinton-funded opposition research was being funneled into the Justice Department during the 2016 election through a back-door marital channel. It’s a tale that raises questions of both conflict of interest and possible false testimony.

Ohr has admitted to Congress that, during the 2016 presidential election, she worked for Fusion GPS — the firm hired by Democratic nominee Clinton and the Democratic National Committee to perform political opposition research — on a project specifically trying to connect Donald Trump and his campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, to Russian organized crime.

Now, 339 pages of emails from her private account to Department of Justice (DOJ) email accounts, have been released under a Freedom of Information Act request by the conservative legal group Judicial Watch. And they are raising concerns among Republicans in Congress, who filed a criminal referral with the Justice Department on Wednesday night.

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Tit for Tat? Why Did Mueller Let Trump Off the Hook? by Mike Whitney

Did the Deep State let Trump off the hook on Russiagate in exchange for his promotion of a Deep State foreign policy? The possibility can’t be dismissed. From Mike Whitney at unz.com:

Why did Robert Mueller end the Russia investigation when he did? He could have let it drag it out for another year or so and severely hurt Trump’s chances for reelection. But he didn’t do that. Why?
Of course, we’re assuming that the investigation was never intended to uncover the truth. If it was, then Mueller would have interviewed Julian Assange, Craig Murray and retired members of the Intelligence Community (Ray McGovern, Bill Binney) who have shown that the Podesta emails were leaked by an insider (on a thumbdrive) not hacked by foreign agents. Mueller would have also seized the servers at DNC headquarters and done the necessary forensic investigation, which he never did. He also would have indicted senior-level agents at the FBI and DOJ who improperly obtained FISA warrants by withholding critical information from the FISA court. He didn’t do that either. Mueller did none of these things which simply proves that his final report was what many people had expected from the very beginning; a purely political document that twists the truth to achieve Mueller’s particular objectives. But to understand what those objectives are, we need to determine what the real goals of the investigation were. So, here they are:
  1. To help sabotage Trump’s political agenda
  2. To create a cloud of illegitimacy over Trump’s election
  3. And to prevent Trump from implementing his plan to normalize relations with Russia.

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