[COMMENTARY] Appeasement or Treason: Trump & Russia
Opinion by Meidas University Contributor Sam Andrus
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Note from the author: The word president* is not capitalized and has an asterisk to represent president* Trump’s impeachment and treason, thus I shall not refer to him by the correct title of President.
Following one of the worst cyberattacks in recent memory that compromised the Department of Commerce, Agriculture Department, and the cyber arm of the Department of Homeland security, as well as exposing vulnerabilities in the cybersecurity of the U.S. military, White House, Justice Department, National Security Agency, and even the U.S. Postal Service, many U.S. officials pointed to Russia as the perpetrator of these attacks.
Experts point to the coordination, extraordinary skill set, and resources used as evidence that the threat was state-sponsored. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, during an interview on The Mark Levin Show, a notoriously Trump-loyalist program, stated that “This was a very significant effort, and I think it’s the case that now we can say pretty clearly that it was the Russians that engaged in this activity “. The problem however is that this sentiment was not echoed by the sitting president*. In a pair of tweets sent out Saturday, December 19th, Trump undercut Pompeo entirely, stating that, “Russia, Russia, Russia is the priority chant when anything happens because Lamestream is, for mostly financial reasons, petrified of……..discussing the possibility that it may be China (it may!).”
Additionally, White House officials were preparing to release a statement Friday afternoon naming Russia as the culprit behind the cyber attack but were told to stand down without clear reason. In the same tweet, following the admission of China as a possible actor behind the attack, Trump also claimed the attack might have affected U.S. voting machines in the 2020 election which he refuses to acknowledge that he lost, badly. These comments from president* Trump are worrisome, not only has he taken action not to blame Russia for the attack to which his own intelligence officials and Secretary of State have attributed it, but he has also once again used his racist use of China as a scapegoat for all foreign attacks. This goes well with his theme of blaming China for the U.S.’s COVID response failure as well as protecting Russia, for one reason or another. The reasoning behind this decision from president* Trump and the implications it has on American democracy is what I shall be discussing in this opinion.
Since before the inauguration of President* Donald Trump, speculation about his affairs with the Russian government has been prevalent. With claims of election interference in the 2016 election, as well as Russia, being linked to the hack on multiple Democratic officials during the 2016 Presidential election, it is safe to assume that there is at least some ties between Trump and Russia. Some of the connections that have got him in trouble in the past include:
● Links between former National Security Advisor (ha) Michael Flynn (recently pardoned) and former campaign manager Paul Manafort with pro-Russian Ukrainian politicos including Viktor Yanukovich, the exiled 4th president of Ukraine who was removed in the 2014 Ukrainian revolution for many reasons which include corruption, personal excess, as well as the accusation of police abuse and election rigging, and who now lives in (you guessed it) Russia.
● Contact before and after the 2016 election between Flynn and Jared Kushner (whose father was recently
pardoned) with Russian officials (with many connections kept secret until discovery).
● British, Dutch, and American intelligence about meetings between Trump associates and Putin associates.
● Attempt to attain incriminating information against Hillary Clinton by Kushner, Manafort, and Donald Trump Jr. (whose father doesn’t love him) meeting with Russian government attorney, Natalia Veselnitskaya, in Trump Tower who volunteered this information out of “its government support for Mr. Trump”.
● 2015 claims that he had met with Russian president Vladimir Putin which was later reneged in 2016 where he claimed: “I never met Putin”.
● Asking the FBI for help quieting news about Trump officials’ ties to Russia.
● The Washington Post Letter outlined how Jared Kushner and Michael Flynn had attempted to set up a secretive line of communication between Trump and the Kremlin that would circumvent United States intelligence.
● The Mueller Report, summarized and negated by Trump’s Attorney General Bill “I don’t know the law” Barr.
● Roger Stone (whose sentence was commuted before being recently pardoned) sliding into the DMs of alleged DNC hacker “Guccifer 2.0” on Twitter, whose IP address was traced back to G.R.U., a Russian intelligence agency.
● The United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s August 18th, 2020 report concluded that there were significant ties between Russia and Trump’s 2016 campaign including the hiring of a Russian intelligence officer, Konstantin V. Kilimnik, this committee was led by Republican Senator Marco Rubio.
Honestly, I could go on and on about the evidence tying Trump to Russia. It’s staggering how badly he covered his tracks, most of his co-conspirators are only recently getting out of prison, and only due to Trump’s Christmas pardon spree.
Over the years, I’ve had many theories about why Trump appears so subservient to the Russian president. Maybe he’s in love with him, maybe he was too broke from all his failed business ventures to self-finance his 2016 campaign and needed a bailout from his old friend Putin (whom he “ never” met) which would make him indebted to Russia, maybe no one bothered to tell him Russia isn’t one of our allies. Who knows for sure? The only thing that is crystal clear is that president* Trump has not been serving the interest of the American people. He let COVID cripple our nation, he allowed, and caused rampant racism and division thrive, he instigated violence against protestors, and he failed to protect national security in the most recent cyber attack. It is clear that Trump is working with, if not for the Russians.
This is not a form of appeasement, and if it was that still would not exonerate his actions (appeasement doesn’t usually work for global hegemonic conflict). This is treason. Trump is a traitor to the American people, his entire life he has scammed people in order to accumulate wealth, and he has fooled enough of the populace to con the whole country (I could make a joke about conservatives here but not even they see to know what the fuck he’s doing right now). Trump let the attack happen and ignored the obvious evidence naming Russia as our assailant, why else would a president* so adamantly “America First” negate his isolationist rhetoric to protect a known foreign threat from consequences?
The Soviet Union officially collapsed in 1991, but the actions of the new Russia are now mimicking that of the old, it doesn’t help that president Putin operated as a KGB agent for 16 years before turning to politics in 1991. The threat of the Soviet Union was real enough for every American President before Trump including President Ronald Reagan who, for better or for worse, is the highest standard Republicans seem to have besides Jesus. Trump’s actions towards Russia throughout his presidency* have been uncharacteristic and foolish, his appeasement and friendly attitude are at the best weakness, and at worst complicity. The only thing keeping the Cold War cold during the era of the Soviet Union was the promise of mutually assured destruction but with recent hacks into our military, including a vulnerability in our nuclear assets, our second-strike capabilities may have been undermined and our current president* is most definitely compromised.
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