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12 November 2017

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Richardstevenhack

There is absolutely zero evidence that Russia tried to "meddle" - whatever that word even means - in the US election, either by hacking or by media.

Neither would they make any serious efforts to try, since they would know with absolute certainty that nothing they do would offset the efforts of the US mainstream media and the general flow of US social media as well as the state of the US electorate. The US is not Ukraine or Poland or some other benighted European doghouse.

People who think a quarter million dollars worth of ads from Russia are going to influence the US electorate are delusional. When the US tries to "meddle" it spends millions upon millions of dollars funding NGO's, bribing foreign officials, and even handing out cookies on election day. No one anywhere saw anything even remotely like that coming out of Russia.

The only "disinformation campaign" that existed is the one run by John Brennan out of CIA, as referred to by Sy Hersh. It was highly effective because it had the entire US mainstream media and most of social media on its side as well as at least three agencies of the US intelligence community.

The entire Russiagate meme relies on two events, both of which are being nibbled away as being false flags: 1) the alleged DNC "hack", which never occurred; and 2) the "dodgy dossier".

If anything, the latter might be considered a Russian influence operation, since it's quite likely the Russians saw a chance to insert a load of nonsense into Steele's report while getting paid for it and assuming that whoever used it would find it blowing back on them. That's something I could believe a Russian intelligence agency doing.

Instead, the dossier full of nonsense was BELIEVED by everyone who didn't like Trump. I'm sure the Russians are either irritated by that or laughing hysterically.

Far from being a Russian influence operation, the US electorate is its own worst enemy.

Anna

"...he USA and its allies are the final victors of world history, with a god-given right to meddle in the internal affairs of other states in the name of democracy."
It seems that the meme "spreading democracy" has been worn out completely.

John_Frank

There seems to be a misunderstanding about what the President said while overseas and the significance of his remarks.

During the flight from Da Nang to Hanoi, Vietnam on Air Force One, he spoke with the media.

Remarks by President Trump in Press Gaggle Aboard Air Force One en route Hanoi, Vietnam | 11/11/2017 https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/11/11/remarks-president-trump-press-gaggle-aboard-air-force-one-en-route-hanoi

Mr. Trump never said that he believes Mr. Putin's claim that Russia did not meddle in the election.

What he said was:

"I believe -- I really believe that when he tells me that, he means it."

It meaning meddle.

So, all Mr. Trump was saying was he believes Mr. Putin means it when he says he did not meddle.

Now, some people sought to use that to claim Mr. Trump was being manipulated by Mr. Putin. Wrong.

How does pushing Mr. Putin to admit that Russia did in fact meddle in the election, which Mr. Trump believes Mr. Putin is not going to do, help mend relations between the United States and Russia?

By not bashing Mr. Putin over the head, and by in essence saying, we will agree to disagree on the matter, does this not create an opening to improve relations, even in the face of the serious sanctions imposed by Congress?

As an aside, follows is a link to the text of the joint statement that was issued as a result of the discussions between the two men and their respective teams:

Joint Statement by the President of the United States and the President of the Russian Federation https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2017/11/275459.htm

Later, during the Joint Press Conference with the Vietnamese President, he was asked by John Roberts of Fox News:

Q Thank you, Mr. President. And if I could throw a little bit of a change up here, I'll ask both leaders a question as opposed to just one. Mr. President, to you, if we could first. On the way here to Hanoi, from Da Nang, you talked about your meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday in which you said you received further assurances from him that he did not meddle in the U.S. election. PRESIDENT TRUMP: That's true. Q There was some uncertainty that brewed back in the United States over your statement that you said, "When he tells me that, I believe that he means it." That was taken in some circles, including Senator John McCain, to think that you believe that he is saying he did not interfere in the election. Could you, once and for all, definitively, sir -- yes or no -- say whether or not you believe that President Putin and/or Russia interfered in the election? PRESIDENT TRUMP: What I said there, I'm surprised that there's any conflict on this. What I said there is that I believe he believes that, and that's very important for somebody to believe. I believe that he feels that he and Russia did not meddle in the election. As to whether I believe it or not, I'm with our agencies, especially as currently constituted with their leadership. I believe in our intel agencies, our intelligence agencies. I've worked with them very strongly. There weren’t seventeen as was previously reported; there were actually four. But they were saying there was seventeen; there were actually four. But as currently led by fine people, I believe very much in our intelligence agencies. Now, at the same time, I want to be able -- because I think it's very important -- to get along with Russia, to get along with China, to get along with Vietnam, to get along with lots of countries, because we have a lot of things we have to solve. And, frankly, Russia and China in particular can help us with the North Korea problem, which is one of our truly great problems. So I'm not looking to stand and start arguing with somebody when there's reporters all around and cameras recording and seeing our conversation. I think it was very obvious to everybody. I believe that President Putin really feels -- and he feels strongly -- that he did not meddle in our election. What he believes is what he believes. What I believe is that we have to get to work. And I think everybody understood this that heard the answer. We have to get to work to solve Syria, to solve North Korea, to solve Ukraine, to solve terrorism. And, you know, people don't realize Russia has been very, very heavily sanctioned. They were sanctioned at a very high level, and that took place very recently. It's now time to get back to healing a world that is shattered and broken. Those are very important things. And I feel that having Russia in a friendly posture, as opposed to always fighting with them, is an asset to the world and an asset to our country, not a liability. And, by the way, Hillary Clinton had the reset button. She wanted to get back together with Russia. She even spelled "reset" wrong. That's how it started, and then it got worse. President Obama wanted to get along with Russia, but the chemistry wasn't there. Getting along with other nations is a good thing, not a bad thing -- believe me. It's a good thing, not a bad thing.

Remarks by President Trump and President Quang of Vietnam in Joint Press Conference | Hanoi, Vietnam https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/11/11/remarks-president-trump-and-president-quang-vietnam-joint-press

Anna

"They sought a weakened Clinton presidency presiding over a divided United States or something other than the "New World Order/American Exceptionalism" that Clinton espoused. They got that."

Considering that during period in Russian history when Clinton was in power, Russia was a mortally weakened state toyed by the Harvard Boys and experiencing the shock economy, epic thievery of national natural resources, and destruction of national industries, your suggestion that Russia had been shaping the US policies and US moral image is rather doubtful. Could you name anyone in the Russian government who has inflicted as much harm to the US as the homegrown Clinton, to mention just some of his exploits: repeal of the The Glass–Steagall Act; the war against Yugoslavia, including the Kosovo "independence" (does not Crimea bite today?); "corporations are persons".. After Clinton it was Bush the lesser and his extended brain Cheney el al (mostly ziocons) that saddled the nation with the Middle Eastern wars - or you believe in your heart that the tremendous waste of the US resources in the Middle East was the result of "Russian conspiracy?"
The lack of universal health care, the shameful absence of paid maternity leave (on a par with Papua Guinea), the racket of college education, the Quantitative Easing, and more - these all are the "natural" homegrown products. No need to blame Russian influence for the US internal policies.
By the way, in the 90-s, life expectancy for men in Russia was 57 years. Add to that several huge waves of emigration, which washed away the large numbers of the brightest, best educated, and ambitious to the western countries... It is a miracle that Russia was able to survive and regroup. Instead of making a partner, the US "exceptionalists" (with strong financial interests) have been making a believable and profitable enemy out of the nuclear state on the other side of the planet. Not very smart.

james

but that never counts!! just ask nikki haley, lol...

james

thanks smoothie.. i see it in a similar way.. however when the usa is run by neo cons and an exceptionalist position, it appears impossible to get the usa back on track in a normal functioning way... it has only gotten worse the past 10-20 years..

Anna

Look at a recent story involving "Lord Polak" (a creation of bastardly Cameron) and some Priti Patel, a British MP whose heart lies with Israel rather than with UK: https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/staggers/2017/11/here-why-priti-patel-s-undisclosed-trip-israel-so-bad
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/priti-patel-israel-army-idf-foreign-aid-money-british-holiday-meetings-netanyahu-international-a8041716.html
What's the difference between AIPAC and Conservative Friends of Israel in the UK? - Zero. Except that the Israel-firsters in the US government meet no scrutiny.

Murali

Twisted Genius I beg to defer with your statement "ou got us good this time... it's not going to happen again, mudak." What is wrong with exposing the corruption in the Hillary camp. If I am not wrong at the time of the release of those emails the Great Mesaiah Obama said don't pay attention to the content pay attention to the fact that our democracy has been compromised. This speaks volumes about the rotten corruption in our body politic. Thanks

Tim B.

How exactly do you "know" what Russia "wants?" Moreover, exactly how do you know what Russia "sought?" Frankly, this whole Russian influence scandal is based mainly upon speculation, not evidence. Do you have any actual evidence to back up your claims?

Eric Newhill

elev8,
That's a good point. A year into this silliness and we are still using vague non-legal/non-meaningful terms like "meddling", "election-hacking", "collusion", "interfering".

If the Russians and/or Trump actually did something then let's employ the proper legal terminology. Let's call things by what they are specifically....but we can't. Which is very telling.

Mueller is investigating a non-legal allegation, "collusion".

Language is important. Crimes have names and definitions. These are written in official books containing legal codes. Evidence must be produced that confirms that what the legal code says is a crime actually happened. This is done so the people are protected from rogue law enforcement making up crimes on a whim to suit their persecution of someone they don't like.

Yet here we are with an investigation and a 24/7 news cycle going on and on with no allegations of actual laws being broken - nor of espionage - and no evidence to suggest that anything of the sort occurred other than a very lousy candidate that falls on her face in the gutter losing an election and not accepting responsibility for the loss.

What's worse, the lousy candidate did violate actual laws with actual names in actual legal code when she maintained a private unprotected server with classified material on it. And got away with it, aided by the very people conducting the current investigation (or associates of these people).

Let's say 40% of the country sees it the way I do. I think that's a fair number. WTF is the Mueller/Borg conspiracy going to do? If they make a move against Trump without a real clear large caliber smoking gun that is a violation of actual pre-existing named law, they will have a civil insurrection on their hands and, longer term, probably a total and permanent breakdown of US society.

And if they find a similar smoking gun involving Russia (but not Trump) what will they do about that? More sanctions? Big whoop? Start a war? I don't think so. And they will have set a precedent that may be applied to other countries that we know influence our processes, like Mexico, Israel, KSA, etc. There are lots of "colluders" in Congress and elsewhere where those countries are involved. Do those people want their gravy trains shut down? Do they want to be investigated for "collusion"?

IMO, the Borg doesn't have the the smarts to make this crap work as intended. Their cleverness appears to stop at getting a bunch of incurious dummies that already hated Trump and Putin due to long established biases to jump on board a crazy train. In other words, they got a mob going. Now what?

TimmyB

Actually, that comment you quoted is little more than a huge big straw man and red herring. No one here claims Russia would never do anything like this nor do people claim Putin has our best interests at heart.

Instead, the actual claim is that there is little to no actual evidence that the Russian government hacked the DNC or Podesta or released any of their emails to Wikileaks. Additionally, there zero evidence the Russian government has any control or undo influence over Trump, or that the Russian government influenced the American voting public to vote for Trump.

Is Putin a saint? Of course not. But he's not Hitler either.

Publius Tacitus

And your evidence of Russian misdeeds? I'm asking for real evidence instead of an opinion born of a dislike of Russia.

The Twisted Genius

Eric Newhill,

I think you have gotten to the crux of the matter. The very idea that Russia conducted a broad influence operation to interfere with the 2016 election is damaging to the Trump brand. I'll grant you that. I think it's most damaging to Trump's psyche. The Mueller investigation focusing on possible conspiracy to violate the election laws of the US and obstruction of justice is definitely damaging and, if charges are lodged, downright devastating to Trump and those around him. IMO those in absolute denial that Russia could hack the DNC and Podesta emails and mount a broad, sustained influence op against the US are invested in the Trump brand. They seek to silence any mention of this narrative to protect their investment in the Trump brand.

However, I don't see it as damaging to the United States. Russia was able to take advantage of advances in media techniques and technologies to attempt to influence us. I don't see any evidence that any of these activities changed the actual votes. I seriously doubt that happened. We should be proud of that. I do think that Russian influence op contributed greatly to the divisiveness in the populace. It certainly shaped crowd actions. An example is the demonstration and counter-demonstration organized in Houston outside a mosque on 21 May 2016 by two Russian-produced facebook groups (Heart of Texas and United Muslims of America). Or the alt right bloggers (@Jen_Adams and @TEN_GOP) who turned out to be Russian creations. The more these things are publicized, the better prepared the populace is to recognize these attempts in the future. This education and any ensuing changes in social media technologies will make us stronger.

Russian cyber operations against us have been quietly studied and addressed for many years. I fought that quiet war myself for those years. However, those cyber operations themselves have become noisier. In 2015 and 2016, the Russian hackers fought back against us as we sought to remove them from JCS and DOS unclassified systems. Until then, that was unheard of. If the DNC and Podesta files were never made public, I doubt those hacks would have been publicly acknowledged by the DNC or the USG. When it moved from cyber-espionage to influence ops, the rules changed.

The Russian-US relationship was much worse in the 70s and 80s than it is now. We weathered that and still managed to cooperate on certain things. I’m confident both the US and Russia will weather this… in spite of all the breathless talk in the US.

Oh yes. I am definitely way too far into the geeky zone. I'm working on a fuller explanation of what went on with the influence op and the AI assisted, social media-based propaganda machine (totally legal at the present time) that will be the hallmark of any successful national political campaign from this day forward.

james

i agree with you and pt about the dangers as well.. they seem already baked into the situation with regard to russia and iran.. if stepping back from the precipice was in the interests of the neo cons and those pushing war, it would be possible, but it seems the politicians are beholden to these same neo cons and fear mongers.. it appears ominous as you say..

Anna

The "fake news and falser Russian dossier" happen to be amazingly stupid, into-your-face bad quality, particularly considering the money and repercussions involved. As if the most stupidest individuals made some collective effort to impress the populace...
Perhaps the most important outcome of the "Ruskie threat" story (re national security) is the revealing of the mediocrity-in-charge. As Mike Whitney explains, "...Brennan was not operating as a free agent pursuing his own malign political agenda, but as a strong-arm facilitator for the powerful foreign policy establishment which includes leaders from Big Oil, Wall Street, and the giant weapons manufacturers. These are the corporate mandarins who pull Brennan’s chain and give Brennan his marching orders." http://www.unz.com/mwhitney/is-hillary-just-the-fall-guy-for-the-intel-agencies-and-their-moneybags-bosses/
The visible actors are the willing opportunists and puppets of the real deciders - "the powerful foreign policy establishment"

Anna

Two points are prompted by your post:
1. Should not CrowdStrike' Aleprovich be investigated for anti-American activity, such as the willing incitement of hostilities between two nuclear powers by producing and publicizing the fraudulent "analysis" of important data? (The data should have been handed directly to the proper governmental agency)
2. How come that Awan affair - the greatest breach in national cybersecurity - has not been not treated as such? Mrs. Wasserman was quite pro-active in preventing the DC police from doing their job re Awan affair. Is she in federal prison? - No. Where the national security services have been while the foreign nationals were busy browsing the classified information on Congresspeople' computers - for years!

Publius Tacitus

Good Lord man. Do you have a brain freeze? You assert a broad Russian influence operation during the 2016 election. Do you really believe that nonsense? Where the Russians behind the leak of the Billy Bush tape? Did the Russians run Hillary's campaign into the ground? Did they secretly persuade her to hide her emails and use a private server?

I don't know what election you were observing, but the main issues and story lines had nothing to do with Russia until Hillary made the unfounded, baseless charge. Her chutzpah is that she, her campaign and the DNC were actually working with foreigners to inject Russia into the campaign.

Fred

TTG,

I asked about influence not fraud.

"Mexico would be foolish to the point of criminality if they did not attempt to influence the colossus to the north. "

Here's an example of former President of Mexicon speeking on immigration - not into Mexico either.
https://www.noozhawk.com/article/021910_vicente_fox
I would say this would have influence on Mexicans who were American citizens in 2010 and how they would vote. If memory serves he also spoke at the Detroit Economic club on multiple occasions saying essentiall the same thing.

Anna

More on the "liberated" (nulandized) Ukraine: http://observer.com/2017/06/ukraine-corruption-petro-poroshenko-vladimir-putin/
"According to UN data, almost 60 percent of Ukrainians live below the poverty line. In 2015, 28.6 percent did. Thirty-four percent of Ukrainians want to leave their country. The highest share of potential emigrants (55 percent) are people younger than 30 years-old.
Only 1.9 percent of Ukrainians trust President Petro Poroshenko. An overwhelming 78.1 percent do not. In fact, Poroshenko is so despised in Ukraine that one store in Kiev prints “Poroshenko asshole” on their receipts."
Guns prevail over law. Yuriy Bereza, the deputy head of the Parliamentarian faction backed by Minister for Interior Arsen Avakov, promised to massacre the opposition if it ever tried to return to power. He said, “I have a plan B. There will be no civil war. The will be no revanche. There will be the Night of Long Knives. That’s it.”

Anna

Should be CrowdStrike' "Dmitri Alperovich." Sorry for the typo

Anna

"...the US moved to a wonderland..." - was not it Karl Rove, this stinky stain on the history of the US, who proclaimed "we create our own reality..."?

Eric Newhill

TTG,
I see now very clearly.

I think we could raise the allegation that you are an anti-Trump, anti-Russian Lithuanian agent with Ukrainian connections. Your posts/comments and probably other online activities are part of a larger influence-ops.The public needs to know this so we can study you and your techniques. In the climate of witch hunts anyone can be a witch, you know. Hey, don't worry if you drown, you're not a witch and your name will be cleared.

Seriously, the Russians contributed to the divisiveness of the population?!!?? Some black law professor has a popular op ed in the NY Times about how he has taught has children to never trust white people. The Russians are behind that? The Russians caused Hillary to call half the country "deplorables"? The Russians are behind Obama calling half of the country "Bitter clingers"?

George Soros funded groups had nothing to do with Antifa and BLM? That's Russians too? The Russians caused BLM types to shoot a bunch of cops during the election cycle? To burn Ferguson and Baltmore?!!? The Russians want the CW statues torn down? And to be fair and balanced, the Russians are behind Rush Limbaugh and Alex Jones?!!!??!!

Sorry, but you have totally lost me.

Imagine

Air Force resurrects Pournelle's "Rods from God" weapon concept. Create precision nuclear-level explosions deliverable anywhere on Earth in 15 minutes by circumventing treaties, starting an arms race, weaponizing space and dropping a hypersonic tungsten phone pole on inconvenient cockroaches from a presumably unhackable suborbital platform controlled by SkyNet. Win Friends And Influence People. Wile E. Supergenius. What could possibly go wrong?

http://www.wearethemighty.com/articles/these-air-force-rods-from-god-could-hit-with-the-force-of-a-nuclear-weapon
http://taskandpurpose.com/kinetic-bombardment-kep-weaponry/

Remember, whatever can be done for you, can be done to you.

Let's think about this. Is this really the kind of world you want to leave for the children?

VietnamVet

PT

A reconstituted Russian state would have intelligence agencies to watch others and protect its national interests. My opinion is that they were caught flatfooted by the Ukraine Coup and the shoot down of MH-17. However, the Syrian intervention indicates that Russia is back up to speed. On the other hand, America is falling apart due to incompetence. CIA and NSA had their most secret internet hacking tools stolen and they are out in the wild. The basic corruption of the US political systems was exposed for all to see. It is so much easier to blame GRU than a pimply Bulgarian in his basement.

The restart of the Cold War and the horrible risk of a nuclear holocaust indicate that there isn’t the slightest concern for the wellbeing of Americans. The primary drive for the western establishment is to keep financiers and war profiteers fat and rich.

james

thanks eric.. i think your analogy is apt...

i am sorry ttg, but i have to agree with eric and pt here.. i am a canuck - i don't believe i have some special attachment to trump or clinton in any of this..

facebook is being used by countless yahoos... to think russia is behind every crazy event that happens in the usa is about where the russiaphobics are at these days i guess, and it looks like they include you too.. the koolaid from the msm appears to be working on a good number of folks...

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