What's Up With Russia?
I've got an interesting take on the whole Russian election-meddling issue. I've been reading Australian far-left progressive blogger Caitlin Johnstone for the past few months, and she's been providing some interesting perspectives on things. For example, the title of her July 18 post "Russiagate Is Like 9/11, Except It’s Made Of Pure Narrative" gives you an idea of where she's coming from. She doesn't bother with Australian politics because she realizes that Australia is merely a vassal state of America, and like me, she's profoundly concerned with the survival of human civilization, and she knows that the key to saving the very lives of everyone on Earth (including her children and her American expat husband) is American politics. So she's deeply concerned with what we do here, but at the same time, as an Australian living somewhat out of the prevailing atmospheric jet streams that would spread WW3's nuclear radiation around the northern hemisphere, she's able to write as someone who doesn't have a dog in this fight. I also love her because, like me, she links enlightenment (meditation, yoga, self actualization, a direct experience of oneness with our fellow beings) with geopolitics. She's sticking to her guns in her assertion that, so far, zero credible proof of Russian interference in our election has been released to the public, and that we should be very leery of allowing a very few government spokesmen to create a narrative for us.
Here she is doubling down on it just yesterday -- "Lying Bigot James Clapper Assures World The Russia Narrative He Built Is Legit" -- even after dozens of her most ardent fans, including me, had asked her to reconsider her stance.
But then a few days ago, I heard information on one podcast that revealed that there has actually been DETAILED evidence released by the Mueller investigation showing that those "12 Russian military officers" are not just generic soldiers but actual intelligence officers, each with a name, unit name, rank, and ID number obtained by the investigation. Evidence has been made public that shows where and for how long each of these Kremlin based officers had been stationed and what types of cyber attacks each officer had made against the DNC and our voting system computers. One of my many huge pet peeves is when the media leave out something that EVERY intelligent person must be wondering about. And thankfully, this one podcast (I think it was the New York Times "The Daily") mentioned this key piece of the puzzle. And yesterday I found an article on line that does the same: "What Mueller Knows About the DNC Hack—And Trump Doesn’t", by Thomas Rid in Politico.
I've been right with Caitlin Johnstone for the past few months. Like Caitlin, I've been somewhat disgusted at the liberals of the "McResistance" for trying to rekindle the Cold War with Russia. It seems incredibly strange to me to see liberals suddenly loving and trusting the intelligence agencies that have basically been our enemies for the past few decades (think surveillance of MLK, surveillance of John Lennon, COINTELPRO, helping Bush sell the 2003 Iraq invasion, spying on all Americans (and lying about it to Congress), and don't forget all the cruel dictators our CIA has placed in power in poor countries). I asked Caitlin yesterday in a comment I typed in response to one of her latest blog posts if she weren't a little bit afraid of having to eat crow. I reminded her that there are SOME good and smart people in our intelligence agencies who take their jobs seriously, and I asked her, "Don't you think that it's possible, this time, that they're NOT lying to us?"
Having just now finished the third of what I'm pretty sure are THE 3 KEY BOOKS* about humanity's BIGGEST problem (impending nuclear war by accident or on purpose), I'm especially sympathetic to Trump's desire to be friends with Russia. He has always been interested in the incredibly real and pressing danger of nuclear weapons, even long before he was President. Both Noam Chomsky and Daniel Ellsberg say that it is nothing less than miraculous that we are still alive, and they warn that our present nuclear strategies are almost the same as they were in the 1950's, despite the fact that nukes have gotten 1,000 times stronger since the days of Little Boy and Fat Man. Chomsky and Ellsberg believe that it's literally insane to continue a strategy that DEPENDS upon a miracle. I see it as playing Russian roulette once a day for a month, luckily surviving, and then deciding to try it again for another month! When you count the 6 times (that we know of) that Russia and USA have been within 5 minutes of total nuclear war and then factor in the hundreds of less-serious close calls*, it's not a matter of IF but WHEN nuclear holocaust occurs, unless humans somehow manage to get past the tribalism of nations and find a way to somehow federate as one world with separate states, something like what was achieved through the European Union, a great accomplishment in light of centuries of bloody warfare between European nations.
But now we know (or do we?) that Putin has "attacked the United States". From the get-go I've hated the media calling the alleged Russian hacking and meddling in our 2016 election an "attack", when, as Caitlin kept reminding us, we've NEVER seen conclusive evidence to prove it. But if the very specific information about Russian hacking obtained by the Mueller investigation IS true, which it now seems to be, I think even Caitlin should call an attack an attack. Based on the fact that Trump had already been briefed on this evidence, what he just did at the Helsinki summit -- taking Putin's word over that of our own intelligence agencies -- is treason. If Putin's agents actually stole emails from the DNC (even though by releasing them Russia alerted progressives about the DNC treason of pushing Bernie out of the competition), and if they actually attempted to hack into our voting system computers as alleged, then we should impose ultra-strict sanctions on Russia and treat them like a Third World pariah who just happens to have a lot of nukes but won't dare use them. And I guess we should probably strengthen NATO.
As much as I despise and revile Trump and what he represents, I've been sympathetic about his wanting to reform NATO. I've been trying to think outside the box about NATO, an old-fashioned alliance, predicated on the proposition that if Russia so much as inches over the border of even one of our tiny new NATO allies, such as Montenegro, we'll try our very best to launch off as many nuclear missiles at them as we can before they have a chance to retaliate with sufficient missiles to destroy us, and for good measure, we'll destroy all major Chinese cities as well*. Back in the early 1950's when this strategy was being formulated, we were willing to lose maybe 1/4 of our own population immediately and another 1/4 within the next few years to cancer caused by radiation (plus sacrifice the whole nation of China and, ironically, most of our European allies) in order to "win" a war against Russia. And who knows? Maybe the Russians were so insane and the chess game had gotten so incredibly intense and dangerous that this was a reasonable response. Even Daniel Ellsberg thought so! That's why he worked as a nuclear planner from the 1950's until he released the Pentagon Papers in 1971. But in reality, war became OBSOLETE on July 16, 1945, the moment the first atom bomb was successfully detonated at Trinity Site near Alamogordo, New Mexico. So it's possible even for strong progressive Trump haters to see pre-nuclear-war style alliances as something outdated and dangerous.
It seems profoundly obvious that Trump should be impeached immediately. Almost everything he said during his press conference with Putin was about protecting his own legitimacy as President, with no care at all about US national security. Still, I wish the investigators would hurry up and nail him, if he's so guilty, before he appoints another psychopath to our Supreme Court.
It's conceivable Trump will have to resign soon. If so, we'll be jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire. How will we deal with Medieval Mike (Pence) and the frightening, sickening line of presidential succession Trump has in place. We are so f*cked unless we can excise the whole Trump administration like the one gigantic cancer that it is. But if Trump weathers this storm and somehow avoids being destroyed by the Mueller investigation, it's likely that he could be re-elected in 2020. This little video shows me stocking up ammunition just in case (I'm corking some good Cabernet Franc).
There seems to be so little will amongst our representatives to take down Trump! We are all experts at our various jobs -- teaching school, installing plumbing, selling real estate -- but our REPRESENTATIVES are supposed to be expert at constitutional law, and it would SEEM that we have enough evidence to impeach Trump right now. Michael Moore sent out a great mass mailing insisting on immediate impeachment. We actually have MORE than enough on Trump -- his bungling of the disaster in Puerto Rico all by itself is grounds for impeachment.
Only 26% of eligible American voters actually chose Trump, and those voters comprise only .03% of the worlds population. Isn't it mind-blowing that such a tiny percentage of people were able to break our country AND break the world?!
Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner by Daniel Ellsberg
Command and Control by Eric Schlosser