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In a speech at the Munich Security Conference, yesterday, National Security Adviser General HR McMasters summed up the indictment against 13 Russians Assistant Attorney General Rob Rosenstein announced on Friday in a single sentence: “there is now incontrovertible proof of Russian interference in the United States 2016 Presidential Election”.
I read the 37 page indictment with shock at the size, scope and sophistication of Russian information warfare against the American people.
While the President Friday and yesterday tweeted his own exoneration instead of his patriotic anger that any nation would dare to assault American democracy is remarkable.
This is war in the 21st century!
Our sovereignty was violated
- Spies came into the United States
- Where’s the outrage
- If the Commander-in-Chief does not lead the digital defense of the nation – then who will?
- We’ve been attacked, we – the American people – must be protected.
The President has refused to impose additional sanctions against Russia voted by Congress with only two dissenting votes
- How about throwing out a couple of Russian spies on Tuesday?
The indictment is not the dry sort of legalize you’d expect. It reads more like a Vince Flynn novel!
The Russians were: Strategic – beginning their reconnaissance and intelligence gathering in 2014 with trips to the United States to observe the election process in about 10 states including California, Texas, and Florida.
During that trip, the Russians contracted for servers and set up a Virtual Private Network in the United States.
Contacted a forger who could provide (for a price) usable US identity papers
As soon as they returned to Russia, they began to cultivate unwitting US political activists who helped the Russians to develop a more sophisticated understanding of how grassroots politics works in the United States
And then they started their planning and cultivation process –
By the time the 2016 Election began the Russians had a list of 100 unwitting Americans they were actively cultivated
- Intelligence and understanding
- Addition avenues of messaging – that would be trusted because they came from “friends”
To accomplish their goals: to weaken American democracy.
- One objective was to change the subject re: Russian activities in Ukraine and Crimea in 2014
- Putin hates Hillary Clinton. He saw her as a personal enemy (who had interfered in Russian elections). He would do whatever he could to prevent her from becoming President of the United States
- Another was to weaken the faith of the American people in our institutions and, consequently in our democracy.
In The News This Week:
The 5th School Shooting in 35 Days
Something, anything, lots of things MUST BE DONE!
On Wednesday, on Valentines’ Day – a 19 year old orphan returned to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Parkland Florida, and killed 17 people — 14 of his peers, 2 teachers and a football coach – in a mere 5 minutes!
Security Clearances in the White House
While the details of the Rob Porter Security Clearance remain murky – that murkiness has prompted Trey Gowdy – Chairman of the House Oversight Committee to demand a full list of White House personnel who have interim security clearances after more than a year in office
Until the #metoo moment began, spousal abuse was not considered automatically disqualifying for a security clearance in our federal government.
The Senate took up four DACA different proposals and defeated all of them –
The question must be asked of both parties –
- Is DACA a problem to be solved
- Or a campaign issue to be exploited