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07/24/2018

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Here is a comment I made on Jordan Green's Facebook page:

I am replying to Kathy Clark's comment that Trump should be tried for treason. Kathy you display a profound ignorance of the law or strong, but misguided, belief in what you said about the application of the law. Treason is a death penalty statue which can only be used in a time where congress has declared war. On the other hand you may just be obsessed by this president and taking your talking points from some of the over the top rants by mainstream media sources. Here is an article which examines the divide on Trump by leftists. https://original.antiwar.com/.../trump-derangement.../ That the American left is morally and intellectually bankrupt is hardly breaking news, at least to my longtime readers: I reported it way back in 1999, when “leftists” were cheering on the bombing of Serbia. I updated this critique when our vaunted “progressives” attacked Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald for exposing the depredations of the Surveillance State during the reign of Barack Obama. Of course, there have been – and continue to be – exceptions. Yet the old-style liberals, of the sort exemplified by, say, Alexander Cockburn, who never waffle when it comes to questions of war and civil liberties, are few and far between. With Cockburn’s death, in 2012, the species became as rare as an albino redwood – and, yet, not quite extinct.

The “Russia-gate” hoax now being perpetrated by the anti-Trump “Resistance,” in league with elements of what we call the intelligence “community,” has given fresh impetus to the ongoing degeneration of the American left – while highlighting the fact that pockets of healthy dissent remain. Consumed by hatred for President Trump, most of what passes for the “left” today has rushed to embrace the story – concocted by former CIA director John Brennan and a gaggle of still-serving intelligence officials – that the Trump campaign colluded with Russian intelligence to “steal” the 2016 election from Hillary Rodham Clinton. This was done, they claim, by “hacking” the Democratic National Committee’s email system and exposing the profound corruption at the heart of the Clinton campaign. Ancillary to this operation was a concerted effort by the Russians to broadcast “fake news” denigrating Hillary and promoting Trump. All this was done, according to the official intelligence reports and the liberal media, on direct orders from none other than Vladimir Putin himself.

The problem with this narrative is that there’s no evidence for it. The two reports made public by our spooks are laughably bereft of any proof, forensic or otherwise, consisting mainly of bare assertions. The actual evidence, we are told, is classified top super-duper secret, and we’re given the old we-must-protect-sources-and-methods run-around. In short, the intelligence community that told us Saddam Hussein most certainly had weapons of mass destruction ready to launch is now telling us that we just have to trust them.

And while a disturbing proportion of self-avowed liberals and “progressives” are doing just that, this phenomenon is not universal. Over at The Nation, Russia scholar Stephen Cohen has been warning about the dangers of the new Russophobia, and James Carden has been asking why the CIA narrative about the alleged “hacking” of the DNC is being taken at face value. Now a new study by cyber-war experts has challenged the forensics – or lack of them – behind the official narrative: the investigation is conducted by a group of independent researchers and Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). I covered their findings here, but to reiterate I quote the VIPs report:

“There was no hack of the Democratic National Committee’s system on July 5 last year – not by the Russians, not by anyone else. Hard science now demonstrates it was a leak – a download executed locally with a memory key or a similarly portable data-storage device. In short, it was an inside job by someone with access to the DNC’s system. This casts serious doubt on the initial “hack,” as alleged, that led to the very consequential publication of a large store of documents on WikiLeaks last summer.

“Forensic investigations of documents made public two weeks prior to the July 5 leak by the person or entity known as Guccifer 2.0 show that they were fraudulent: Before Guccifer posted them they were adulterated by cutting and pasting them into a blank template that had Russian as its default language. Guccifer took responsibility on June 15 for an intrusion the DNC reported on June 14 and professed to be a WikiLeaks source – claims essential to the official narrative implicating Russia in what was soon cast as an extensive hacking operation. To put the point simply, forensic science now devastates this narrative.”

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