German Intel Clears Russia on Interference

Exclusive: Mainstream U.S. media only wants stories of Russian perfidy, so when German intelligence cleared Moscow of suspected subversion of German democracy, the silence was deafening, says ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern.

By Ray McGovern

After a multi-month, politically charged investigation, German intelligence agencies could find no good evidence of Moscow-directed cyber-attacks or a disinformation campaign aimed at subverting the democratic process in Germany. Undaunted, Chancellor Angela Merkel has commissioned a new investigation.

President Barack Obama talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the G7 Summit at Schloss Elmau in Bavaria, Germany, June 8, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Last year, Berlin’s two main intelligence agencies, the BND and BfV (counterparts of the CIA and FBI) launched a joint investigation to substantiate allegations that Russia was meddling in German political affairs and attempting to shape the outcome of Germany’s elections next September.

Like the vast majority of Americans malnourished on “mainstream media,” most Germans have been led to believe that, by hacking and “propaganda,” the Kremlin interfered in the recent U.S. election and helped Donald Trump become president.

German intelligence agencies rarely bite the hand that feeds them and realize that the most bountiful part of the trough is at the CIA station in Berlin with ultimate guidance coming from CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia. But this time, in an unusual departure from past practice, analysts at the BND and BfV decided to act like responsible adults.

Whereas former CIA Director John Brennan prevailed on his analysts to resort to anemic, evidence-light reasoning “assessing” that Russia tried to tip the U.S. election to Donald Trump, Berlin’s intelligence agencies found the evidence lacking and have now completed their investigation.

Better still, the conclusions have been reported in a mainstream German newspaper, Sueddeutsche Zeitung, apparently because a patriotic insider thought the German people should also know.

Lemmings No Longer?

If BND President Bruno Kahl thought that his own analysts could be depended upon to follow their American counterparts lemming-like and find evidence – Curveball-style – to support the U.S. allegations, he now has had a rude awakening.

CIA Director John Brennan at a White House meeting during his time as President Barack Obama’s counterterrorism adviser.

When the joint investigation was under way with his analysts doing their best to come up with reliable evidence of Russian perfidy, Kahl had behaved like his BND predecessors, parroting the charges made by his CIA counterpart, that the Russians were fomenting uncertainty and instability in Germany and elsewhere in Europe.

In a rare interview with the mainstream newspaper, Sueddeutsche Zeitung, on Nov. 28, 2016, Kahl went out on what he probably thought was a safe limb, denouncing subversive “interference” by the Russians (“as they did in the U.S.”). He was just a few months into his job and may have been naïve enough to consider what John Brennan said as gospel truth. (If he really is that gullible, Kahl is in the wrong profession.)

In the interview, Kahl played the puppet-doll Charlie McCarthy with Brennan in the role of Charlie’s ventriloquist Edgar Bergen. Kahl told the Sueddeutsche that he agreed with the U.S. intelligence “assessment” that the Kremlin was behind the cyber attacks aimed at influencing the U.S. election.

He added: “We know that cyber attacks are taking place and that they have no purpose other than to produce political instability. … Not only that. The perpetrators are interested in delegitimizing the democratic process itself. … I have the impression that the outcome of the American election has evoked no sadness in Russia so far. …

“Europe is [now] the focus of these disruption experiments, and Germany especially. … The pressure on the public discourse and on democracy is unacceptable.” Sound familiar?

Still, one might excuse the novice BND president for assuming his analysts would remember which side their bread is buttered on and follow past precedent in coming up with conclusions known to be desired by their masters in Berlin and the CIA.

So it must have come as an unwelcome surprise to Kahl when he found out that, this time, BND analysts would stand on principle and refuse to be as malleable as their Washington counterparts. His analysts could find no proof that the Kremlin was working hard to undermine the democratic process in Germany, and said so.

Worse still from the U.S. point of view, the two German intelligence agencies resisted the usual pressure from some senior leaders in Berlin (perhaps including Kahl himself) to jam whatever innocuous information they could find into the anti-Russian mosaic that Washington was constructing, a kind of Cubist version of distorted reality.

And So, a Do-Over

So, what do powerful officials do when the bureaucracy comes up with “incorrect” conclusions? They send the analysts and investigators back to work until they come up with “correct” answers. This turned out to be no exception. Absent evidence of hacking directed by the Kremlin, the Germans now have opted for an approach by which information can be fudged more easily.

CIA seal in lobby of the spy agency’s headquarters. (U.S. government photo)

According to the Sueddeutsche, “Chancellor Merkel’s office has now ordered a new inquiry. Notably, a ‘psychological operations group’ jointly run by the BND and BfV will specifically look at Russian news agencies’ coverage in Germany.” We can expect that any articles that don’t portray Vladimir Putin in a devil’s costume will be judged “Russian propaganda.”

For guidance, Merkel may well give the new “investigators” a copy of the evidence-free CIA/FBI/NSA “Assessment: Russia’s Influence Campaign Targeting the 2016 US Presidential Election.” Released on Jan. 6, the report was an eyesore and embarrassment to serious intelligence professionals. The lame “evidence” presented, together with all the “assessing” indulged in by U.S. analysts, was unable to fill five pages; filler was needed – preferably filler that could be made to look like analysis.

And so, seven more pages were tacked onto the CIA/FBI/NSA Assessment, even though the information presented in them had nothing to do with the cause celebre of Russian hacking. No problem: The additional seven pages bore the ominous title: “Annex A: Russia – Kremlin’s TV Seeks To Influence Politics, Fuel Discontent in US.”

The extra pages, in turn, were then used to support the following indictment: “Russia’s state-run propaganda machine contributed to the influence campaign by serving as a platform for Kremlin messaging to Russian and international audiences.”

Did an Insider Leak?

It is not clear how the German daily Sueddeutsche acquired the conclusions of the joint investigation or even whether it has the full 50-page copy of the final report. The newspaper did make it clear, though, that it now realizes it was played by Kahl with his unsupported accusations last November.

Russian President Vladimir Putin answering questions from Russian citizens at his annual Q&A event on April 14, 2016. (Russian government photo)

From what the newspaper was told, the analysts seemed willing to give the boss what he had already declared to be his desired conclusion, but the evidence simply wasn’t there. The article quotes one security expert saying, “We would have been happy to give Russia a yellow card,” a soccer metaphor referring to improper conduct. A cabinet source lamented, “We found no smoking gun.”

Initially, the BND and BfV planned to release excerpts of their still classified inquiry, the Sueddeutsche reported, but it’s now not clear when, if ever, the full report will be released.

The day after the Sueddeutsche story appeared, some other media outlets reported on it – briefly. Newsweek and Politico gave the scoop all of three sentences each. Not fitting with the preferred “Russia-is-guilty-of-everything” narrative, it then died a quick death. I have been unable to find the story mentioned at all in major U.S. “mainstream media” outlets.

If Americans became aware of the story, it was probably via RT – the bête noire of the abovementioned CIA/FBI/NSA report condemning Russian “propaganda.” Can it become any clearer why RT America and RT International are despised by the U.S. government and the “mainstream media?” Many Americans are slowly realizing they cannot count on American network and cable TV for accurate news and are tuning in to RT at least for the other side of these important stories.

It was from a early morning call from RT International that I first learned of the Feb. 7 Sueddeutsche Zeitung report on Germany’s failed hunt for evidence of Russian electoral interference.

Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. An intelligence analyst for 30 years, McGovern was CIA’s senior representative to the Analysis Department of the BND during the late 1970s.

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60 comments for “German Intel Clears Russia on Interference

  1. Andrew Nichols
    February 15, 2017 at 8:32 pm

    After a multi-month, politically charged investigation, German intelligence agencies could find no good evidence of Moscow-directed cyber-attacks or a disinformation campaign aimed at subverting the democratic process in Germany. Undaunted, Chancellor Angela Merkel has commissioned a new investigation.

    Looking to fit some facts round a policy….I wonder where we have seen this before. Wouldnt be an election on would there – Frau Merkel?

    • Dprang
      February 15, 2017 at 10:38 pm

      In USA, there were deliberate attacks on the DNC but if Russia was involved which I believe in USA, it was concentrated on that election. I can understand chancellor Merkel would want to ensure it is not happening. I cannot think of anything worse for democracy if we cannot believe in the integrity of our vote.

      • doray
        February 16, 2017 at 12:52 am

        There is zero evidence of Russian interference in the US election. The bogus claim is the DNC’s weapon of mass distraction from the fact that they ran the worst possible candidate, after rigging the primary against the best possible candidate.
        The real enemy of We the People is the deep corporate state, which has been rigging elections for decades.

        • Virginia Jones
          February 16, 2017 at 3:13 am

          Absolutely right! I just wish Americans could read or see the truth!

      • rosemerry
        February 16, 2017 at 3:39 pm

        You believe it???Why is that, when there is NO evidence, and as we see now, Trump gives NO support to Russia-just the opposite, and Pres. Putin and his team are far too sensible and experienced to have expected anything different. To pretend that the US system is democratic is farcical, and to blame Russia just makes the whose country look ignorant.

  2. Bill Bodden
    February 15, 2017 at 8:58 pm

    Given Angela Merkel’s tolerance for being spied on through her cell phone and, most likely, other communication devices, there is no reason to believe she will pursue evidence not in line with Washington’s agenda.

  3. Sam F
    February 15, 2017 at 9:12 pm

    It is amazing that the German intel analysts actually told the truth, and that lies were not substituted. Clearly they don’t have our brand of Democracy™ and have not learned that virtue=money, deals=productivity, gangsterism=aristocracy, tyranny=justice, democracy=mob rule, good government=subversion, humanitarianism=perversion, us=good, them=bad. We may hope that the US will retaliate by abandoning NATO.

  4. JWalters
    February 15, 2017 at 9:22 pm

    Thanks for this important report. Perhaps the Zionist grip is starting to slip.

    In another noteworthy analysis today –

    “The Israeli interference in our politics is the conspiracy in plain sight that no one in the media talks about because they’re too implicated themselves.”
    http://mondoweiss.net/2017/02/interferes-politics-scandal/

    • Craig
      February 17, 2017 at 5:23 pm

      You’re an idiot, plus some other expletives.

      • Sam F
        February 18, 2017 at 1:30 pm

        His post provides no evidence of that. Yours is not a fair response.

  5. CitizenOne
    February 15, 2017 at 9:32 pm

    As best as I can figure, the lie that the Russians “swung” the election has been thoroughly debunked by this website since day one. This German Intel conclusion also finds there is no credible evidence of a Russian hand in the US election.

    The common theme here is a global military industrial complex which is seeking to make Russia the big bad bear while scant few sources are independent enough from “the machine” to be heard above the media soap box news. It is sad that we need foreign sources of intelligence to verify what is obvious.

    This whole thing with Flynn is a disgrace only because he lied. It is the age old tale it is not the act, but lying about it that condemns him. He should have said “yeah I called Putin, wished him a merry Christmas and said don’t worry, now that we are in power we’re gonna ditch Obama’s sanctions. Easy on the trigger finger cowboy”.

    Just like Clinton should have said “Yeah I had sex with Monica. Next question?”

    One thing is clear. Here in the USA there is every intention by the US media to blame Russia for everything.

    I have an idea for an alternative narrative for the media to counter their “Blame the Russians” for everything.

    How about if the media runs story after story on the front pages of every newspaper and website about the influence of dark money in our recent election? A full expose would be intriguing. I bet there is a really sinister plot there of some media moguls who viewed the passage of Citizens United as a ticket to their gravy train and how they suppressed news about the Supreme Court decision from the news since they knew people would object to the poisonous influence of corporate money in politics and how they knew they would be the net beneficiaries.

    I bet they knew they were putting Trump out as bait to lure billions in ad revenues from 14 republican wannabies.

    Does creating a puppet to lure money count as influencing an election? Hmm.

    Who is the bigger enemy?

    I happen to agree with Trump that the media is the enemy!

    There is zero chance the media will frame the current fight over Supreme Court nominees in the light of which nominee might overturn Citizens United and which one won’t. In case you have been living under a rock, that really is what the real battle for the Supreme Court is over and is also the real reason why it has been an especially vicious fight. It is especially vicious because it is all about money and political elections and who will control the government. One might think there would be some news coverage of the event.

    What we hear about the election “It’s the Russians” and what we do not hear about the election “It’s the money” in America about who is to blame for the results is highly slanted away from the real root cause “the money” and focused on a phantom menace”the Russians”

    • Rob Roy
      February 16, 2017 at 2:07 am

      CitizenOne, actually we have a reliable source of investigation about the so-called Russian “hack.” It’s the VIPS (Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity), about thirty or so retired CIA, NSA, FBI, military professionals who sent a long memo to Obama explaining that there’s no proof that Russia hacked the DNC or tried to hijack our election. (That’s what our country does.) People should know there’s no proof and, in fact, the DNC wasn’t hacked to reveal emails but rather the emails were a LEAK. Period. Also, Assange said vehemently that it was a leak. He should know. But as noted above, the MSM doesn’t care about the truth, just wants to continue smearing Putin so we can eventually bring a war on that country, just as Hillary and the neocons wanted. Iran does not export terrorism either, yet it’s a constant barrage of newspeople saying so, once again using the old tactic of repeating a lie so much that it becomes the truth in the majority’s minds. People commenting here and reading this site know better but are not representative of main street in small towns or rural areas or even the cities.
      I’m trying to figure out the best time to get out of this country and find some place better to live, say Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland….there are other places not run like this ignorant country. My friends in other countries think the USA is crazy.

      • Sam F
        February 16, 2017 at 9:42 am

        The USG is crazy and tantamount to being hopeless, but I would invite your friends to take the essential action required of foreign states to correct the situation. They are quite welcome to begin the process of surrounding and marginalizing the US, which is the only path to reform of a totalitarian plutocracy. All western countries should dump the US from NATO and the UN, dump all US entertainment and mass media, dump the dollar, and denounce the US loudly for all of its interventionism. Then they will see a very slow enlightenment in the US.

        • Brad Owen
          February 17, 2017 at 11:57 am

          I doubt the sovereign independence of the European nations, and the sovereign independence of the Five Sisters, as the Deep State intelligence community refers to them (Australia, Canada, N.Z., U.K., USA). These nations have been turned into mere provinces of an over-arching covert, Empire, run from City-of-London and Wall Street (a tory town; and BTW RELYING on USA manpower to staff their Imperial Legions which is punishment for Washington, Lincoln, FDR and JFK/RFK/MLK, so we wouldn’t even be allowed to withdraw from NATO. we’re captives to Empire, same as the others), and their various meetings of their Managerial Elites at CFR, Trilateralists, Bilderbergers, Davos, Mt. Pelerin, ad nauseum. This has been a-building since the days of Cecil Rhodes’ RoundTable Group, and the PanEuropa Project of the Synarchist Movement for Empire, going back a hundred, hundred fifty, years ago. WWII was their first attempt at bringing these plans to fruition. They’ve spent the intervening years working out the bugs of their plan to re-launch under an asymetrical WWIII, which has been going on since Sept. 11th, 2001…BUT… BRICS and New Silk Road, is giving serious pushback, hence all the hysteria about Putin and Russia, and Trump’s “threatened” detente with Russia.

      • Lisa
        February 16, 2017 at 5:09 pm

        Considering a move to Nordic countries? Welcome!
        Some possibly useful info for you, those who do not plan a move can skip this post.

        I have experience mainly of Finland and Sweden (double citizen). You will, however, be disappointed on the MSM of these countries. During the election, the reporters/correspondents referred only to info from CNN, NYT, WaPo, so that the residents in these countries live with the same crooked picture of reality as in the US. It takes a lot of initiative to find sites like Consortium and other “fake news”, but judging by the reader discussions in the newspapers, quite a lot of people do take the trouble to find a more balanced view. And immediately they are classified as Russian trolls by other debaters.

        The election systems in both countries would be a delight for you. In Finland there are usually 5-6 candidates for president and (note!) all of them participate in the debates on TV. All are on the ballots during the first round. If no candidate receives over 50% of the votes, there is a second round between the two best candidates. The fight for the second place can be quite close.
        And yes, there has been a woman president also.

        Sweden is a monarchy, so no president. The Prime Minister is a near equivalent. In the parliamentary election there are several parties available, big and small. The strongest party in the election gets the Prime Minister post. Governments in both countries usually consist of more parties than one, coalitions are negotiated after the election.
        And guess what: the results are counted within a few hours and results are confirmed in the early morning hours. Early / absentee voting is done well ahead of the elections, so all these ballots are at their districts before the counting starts on the election day.
        It is a mystery for me, why the vote counting is such a mess in the US, and then come the re-counts and attacks on electoral college members, and Supreme Court involvement…

        Long gone are the days when Sweden gave asylum for Vietnam war deserters. Now Sweden does exactly what US expects.

        Finland has traditionally kept close contact with the Russian leaders, with personal visits back and forth. Last summer, Putin visited Finland for discussions with the Finnish president during half a day. Swedes are traditionally irritated by this and criticize Finland. Now they have seemingly had to swallow their criticism as the Swedish Foreign Minister has agreed to visit her Russian counterpart in Moscow.

        Immigration has been a huge problem in both countries, and the massive waves of refugees in 2015 forced the earlier so liberal Swedish government to close the borders and start controlling travel documents of all persons, entering the country. Many refugee smugglers were caught, this had become a fantastic source of income for greedy criminals. There are regular attacks and fires at the refugee housing centers.

        Finally very positive news for you if you are in the child bearing age: both countries have very generous maternity and baby care systems. Parents can care for the newborn at home for abt. 1,5 years at the government’s expense, and the employers must give them parental leave for this period and must take them back after it. The leave is usually divided between parents as they choose.

        Still coming? Start learning a language and getting used to the dark winters. In summer there are no nights at all, for compensation. Why did you leave Norway out from your list? It is a very nice place also. If you like fish.

        • Lisa
          February 16, 2017 at 5:14 pm

          Addition:
          By the way, in both countries a photo ID is a must when voting in any election, and the citizenship must be confirmed.

  6. Wm. Boyce
    February 15, 2017 at 10:00 pm

    Well, this is good that the Russians didn’t interfere in German affairs. Doesn’t mean they didn’t have a go of it here, especially when they had so much to gain from a Trump “victory.” Let the congressional investigation begin.

    • RPDC
      February 16, 2017 at 12:35 am

      Also, how do we really know that there aren’t mermaids? And furthermore how do we know that mermaids didn’t swing the election? We haven’t searched every inch of the ocean, and we don’t know their intentions, assuming of course that they exist. Which seems like a reasonable assumption because it’s obviously in their interest to exist.

      • Rob Roy
        February 16, 2017 at 2:08 am

        Wm. Boyce, see my comment reply to CitizenOne above. There was an investigation and there’s not proof of Russian interference. None.

      • backwardsevolution
        February 16, 2017 at 3:59 am

        RPDC – thank you for the humor. I read your comment out loud to my son, and we both had a good laugh.

        Wm. Boyce – thank you for the laugh too. Congressional investigation? Bring it.

      • Sam F
        February 16, 2017 at 9:47 am

        Exactly, let us put the dark state to investigation of the influence of witches and sorcerers. They have overlooked the obvious explanation and must be got back on track immediately.

    • rosemerry
      February 16, 2017 at 3:43 pm

      Tell us about how well that has worked out, Wm.

  7. tina
    February 16, 2017 at 12:35 am

    I lived in Germany 1969-1983. I had family members in the East. My uncle, whom we really liked, turned out to be a Stasi. You all think this is funny, no problem. There are loyalties that I believe USA citizens do not understand. Please call me or contact me for my family’s story. Born in 1963 by an American soldier and a German young woman. I know where of I speak

    • Yuri
      February 16, 2017 at 1:26 am

      And I can translate it into good English.

      • N Dalton
        February 16, 2017 at 6:45 pm

        Yuri,you are not welcome here – your comment lacks `basic respect and tolerance` and can not be accepted.

  8. Joe J Tedesky
    February 16, 2017 at 1:47 am

    I’m hoping that it is a good sign that the German foot soldiers assigned to do the investigation stood their ground when handing in their findings to their masters. Remember the New York FBI team who didn’t want to let go of Weirners computer and wanted to pursue investigating Hillary’s emails, same thing the lower classes have had enough. So I hope this German reporting being honest, and not finding any Russian involvement in their election processes is score one for the people.

    • Joe J Tedesky
      February 16, 2017 at 8:00 am

      Reading some of the comments, I can’t help but think of Craig Murray, and then Seth Rich. Not that I found the two names to have any solid connection, but that both names run a parallel in a possibly of duality.

      • Joe J Tedesky
        February 16, 2017 at 9:42 am

        Now here is an article which hits the nail on the head about another politician in our system who is at that very moment being demonized by the neocon establishment, and could use our support.

        https://www.lewrockwell.com/2017/02/david-gornoski/sacrifice-tulsi-gabbard/

        Saving Tulsi could be just as important as standing off a MIC/Deep State take over of our democracy….considering she would make a great 36th president, if Trump is not replaced sooner.

    • Joe J Tedesky
      February 16, 2017 at 9:22 am

      Paul Craig Roberts from his view point calls it like it is. Read about it…..

      http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2017/02/16/trump-presidency-rip/

    • Joe J Tedesky
      February 16, 2017 at 9:31 am

      Pepe Escobar has a take on Flynn’s resignation where he quotes the predictions of Mr X once more, and totally sees a much different chess game going on here.

      http://thesaker.is/the-swamp-strikes-back/

  9. F. G. Sanford
    February 16, 2017 at 2:25 am

    “There was no smoking gun”. That’s always the convenient truth on either side of these controversies. As Dr. Walt Brown (the Kennedy researcher, not the crackpot physicist – some people confuse them) points out, “It’s impossible to prove a negative to a certainty.” I liked the mermaid analogy: “We haven’t searched every inch of the oceans, so it’s impossible say for sure.”

    What most people seem to fail to grasp here is what’s at the crux of the issue. We now have “intelligence” agencies acting as though they have a prerogative to certify elections. What could possibly go wrong? A totally unelected, unaccountable. prepotent permanent bureaucracy masquerading as the guarantor of democratic stability? Don’t look now, but the ancient Romans tried that shit. They went from ‘Roman Republic’ to ‘Roman Empire’ to ‘Roman ruins’ in the historical blink of an eye. The entire Michael Flynn saga is a perfect example of “shadow government” subverting a publicly elected administration. Regardless of anyone’s distaste for the individuals involved, this represents perversion of the democratic process. And you, Brutus?

    But, I watched that video of Maxine Waters talking to the “President of Ukraine”, and all my concerns were relieved. Nope, those hackers don’t stand a chance – not when we’ve got intelligent, articulate, insightful, knowledgeable and informed elected representatives like Maxine guard-dogging the democratic process! The “Deep State” just doesn’t have a chance. They’ll never put one over on Maxine!

    Lastly, I’m curious to know how often the Supreme Court overturns its own decisions? For those expecting accountable legislation, it seems their focus is misdirected. These are legislative issues, but the misinformed and largely illiterate U.S. population apparently thinks it’s the Supreme Court’s duty to create rather than interpret laws. That would be the exact opposite of “democracy”. The Supreme Court is an unelected bureaucracy as well, and recently, that have done little to curb the abuses of state tyranny. Just sayin’…and keep in mind, sarcasm and sanctimony are not the same device!

    • Joe J Tedesky
      February 16, 2017 at 10:52 am

      I kind of became convinced the Supreme Court went sour, first with Earl Warren and his Warren committee report on the JFK assassination, and then with the Supremes voting Equal Protection Clause was 7–2, and regarding the lack of an alternative method was 5–4 outcome thusly putting in office our forty third president…well that kind of did it for me.

      Got to love Maxine. I picture her as a rather nice lady, and when the Democratic Party calls she ends her call with, ‘okay so the Russians hacked sweet dear old friend Mrs Clinton, oh how’s Hilary doing, tell Bill I said hello, now did Putin personally listen in on Hillary’? We should always remember that these politicians are beholden to somebody, I mean that’s what politicians do….right? Remember Scott ‘I’m like Reagan’ Walker thinking he was talking to the Koch brothers? Funny how comedians and pranksters reveal more truth than our MSM.

      We should take bets on if the Deep State’s candidate for the presidency is Mike Pence, or should we review what happened to Spiro Agnew? Before that could we expect a in the dead of night change of leadership in the House? I know to much caffeine, but this is America where everything is big…including coups, and yet everyone thinks we never had one. Fact of the matter is America has had maybe one to many coups to count, but who noticed…no one.

      Maybe Escobar is right. That this is going to plan, and Flynn had to go, but I’d like to ask Pepe why so much with the theatrics? Why not just replace Flynn, and tell the media to ease up a bit. I think Donald put the candle in his cake when he went down to Langley and forgot to bring the donuts. I think when we turn on CNN, or MSNBC, we are watching the front line of a war. Call it nationalist against globalist tug of war, call the two sides whatever name you like and what ever struggle metaphor you wish to use, but there is every reason to believe that this is a huge power play going down in real time action that we are watching it all unfold on our tv’s at home…but America doesn’t have coups…say it again, and then say it some more until you totally convince yourself and then go register to vote…it’s the American way.

    • Abe
      February 16, 2017 at 12:07 pm

      Sheldon Wolin and Inverted Totalitarianism
      By Chris Hedges
      http://www.commondreams.org/views/2015/11/02/sheldon-wolin-and-inverted-totalitarianism

      • Abe
        February 16, 2017 at 12:23 pm

        Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism (2008)
        By Sheldon S. Wolin
        https://cryptome.org/2013/01/aaron-swartz/Democracy-Inc.pdf

      • Abe
        February 16, 2017 at 3:17 pm

        “Under inverted totalitarianism,” writes Wolin, “economics dominates politics – and with that domination come different forms of ruthlessness.” The hijacking of American government by corporations has permitted the military-industrial complex (which, in a clever sleight of hand, is no longer considered part of the government) to bleed the country.

        2014 Interview with Sheldon Wolin: Can Capitalism and Democracy Coexist?
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LGc8DMHMyi8

    • Sam F
      February 16, 2017 at 9:55 pm

      Yes, the Supreme Court is the committee of subversion of the Constitution, and they are very dedicated to that, solemnly announcing constitutional principles whenever that coincides with their corrupt purposes, lying as to the facts and law whenever that is profitable, and ignoring every other case altogether. They take only about one percent of the cases brought to them, and never ask for more resources to handle the others, which tells the whole story.

      I know all of this from great personal experience in civil rights litigation.

      The judiciary cultivates the science of lying and nothing more. It becomes sharply more corrupt from bottom to top. There is rarely a need to review a corrupt decision unless someone missed an opportunity to lie, and the ones at the bottom are trying hard to prove their ability to lie, cheat, and steal in judicial sounding tones. One would have to get rid of nearly every one of them to have a working judiciary.

      Just today I spoke with a corrupt clerk at the Supreme Court, Jacob Travers, whose job is to suppress cases they don’t want to take. His trick is to complain that the type size of petitions is wrong after the plaintiff has spent thousands printing it in just the right type style and size. he has done that to me several times, boldly lying and ignoring all facts and evidence, just like his bosses. Would he care to check the type size of some sample pages in different font brands of that same style, so that people know what font brand to buy before they have their documents printed? No, he reuses to do that. Just send him new boxed printed sets of documents, at thousands per experiment, until one meets his approval. He is allowed to do that with instructions as to which cases are allowed even to be presented to the court.

      Think I’m making this up? Be my guest and try it, and see for your self what a sewage pile the Supreme Court is.

  10. February 16, 2017 at 3:52 am

    The problem with Angela Merkel is that her family was one of the few that actually moved to East Germany when it came under communist rule. As the East German government exercised rule using the iron fist of the infamous Stasi it should come as no surprise that in order to get on it was essential to conform. Angela Merkel got on.

    The East German communist government was more like the Third Reich with a change of clothes and a new flag than anything, and was the most tightly-controlled of all the East European satellites. The Stasi performed like the Gestapo. The idea of blind subservience to a super-power comes naturally to her, and replacing the former USSR with the US as a master fits her psychological make-up.

    Adapting to the current mantra is part of her psyche, radical change is not. At this point in time she can no longer see which side of her bread is buttered, and is desperate to hang on to power. Like much of Europe, Germany is becoming more and more polarised with illiberal liberals on one side and right wing fanatics on the other. Many Europeans long for the illusion of security strong government gives them. With financial ruin looming they are grasping at straws. The Western world is facing disaster and our leaders are burying their heads in the sands.

    Russia is not the problem, the United States is.

  11. Alex
    February 16, 2017 at 6:30 am

    The “rare interview with the mainstream newspaper” link is broken. Please fix. Thank you.

  12. germanboy
    February 16, 2017 at 8:41 am

    As a German, I can confirm that the foreign policy attitude regarding Russia, Middle East etc. is more or less the same as compared to the US. There is absolutely no evidence for Russian influence on German internal policy topics? Fine, let’s keep on digging.
    Influential members of almost all parties except the far left and journalists of almost all influential media outlets are involved in US-European think tanks or transatlantic “networks”. Involvement of MSM journalists in belligerent foreign policy drafts and positive reporting about those drafts at the same time has long been exposed by investigative media. Many other myths (Damascus sarin attacks, White helmets, moderate syrian opposition) have been exposed by a small group of sincere and thoroughly working journalists – the vast majority of this alterntive journalism has been broadcast in public state-financed media. So there is still some resistance against the “group think” that rules Germany and has been tightening its grip during the last 6+ years (remember that our former chancellor Schröder refused to participate in the Iraq war and Germany’s refusal to participate in the NATO campaign in Libya in 2011).

    Tragically, I have to admit that over the past few years, Germany (while e.g. having promoted detente with Russia for decades) has been continuously developing a state of political and medial hysteric group think, that according to consortiumnews has been haunting the US for the past decades.

    • Joe J Tedesky
      February 16, 2017 at 10:19 am

      So should we Americans along with you Germans look towards Iceland for inspiration? Also good to hear from a European, we the people of this world should develop a more frequent conversation link with each other….good to hear your citizen opinion.

      • R.F.
        February 17, 2017 at 5:39 am

        The story of russian interference in the german election was brought up by Merkel together with the “fake news” accusations in her press conference right after Obamas farewell visit. If you watch or read what she said on that occasion, the striking thing is the lack of grammar and coherence in what she actually says.
        It is obvious that she is being bullied and she plays along. What I fear is , that this will get worse. Once upon a time Germany and France stood up against the empire by denouncing the illegal war on Irak together with Russia. So France got the chance to make good on its lack of obedience and was allowed to lead the charge on Libia (just look up “Sarkozy” and “Wisner” to see, how neatly this was done). Merkel tried to resist, when it came to escalating Ucraine in 2015. I suppose that the current act of resistence by BND staff will just mean they will be bullied into submission.
        By the way, I find it quite devastating that even on this site people have swallowed the “Russia stole the election” story. How at all ? Use your brains!

        • germanboy
          February 17, 2017 at 6:56 am

          You are absolutely right, the fake news scare started around that time. Nevertheless, there has been unrest because of fake news in the past, you might want to google the “Lisa rape in 2016”. Protests of russian immigrants in Germany against Merkel’s migration policy (even Mr Lavrov intervened) because of an alleged rape of a 14 year old girl by refugees, which indeed turned out to be fake – the aforementioned clearance of Russia concerning interference in Germany also refers to that case.
          The newest spin-off went viral yesterday, when news reports claimed emerging fake news in Lithuania concerning German soldiers raping minors during their NATO deployment which is also “alledgedly” orchestrated by Russia.
          We have been lied to so many times, I’m not buying anything anymore. Sadly, media criticism in Germany has early been co-opted by very far-right movements which makes it very hard for people like me (that are not aligned to those racists) to criticise media coverage based on knowledge like this article without being denounced as a racist/conspiracy theorist/russian spy.

          Interestingly, we had several intelligence leaks in the past that contradicted official German/EU/US foreign policy.
          In leaked secret files, Turkey was slammed for acting as a “central playground for jihadi terror” and Saudi Arabia for their support of terrorism and war crimes in Yemen.
          None of these stories was able to survive longer than a day due to reluctant coverage in the MSM.

          Talking about Ukraine, Germany is surely aligned with US foreign policy. But if it was not for Merkel (and Obama giving her political cover for this in 2014), the current diplomatic approach to solving the crisis (in great need of improvement as it may be) would have been obsolete and thrown over by the powers that want escalation.

          • R.F.
            February 17, 2017 at 11:23 am

            In fact myself I defected from MSM in may 2014 over Ukraine. As I can only think in basic terms my calculation was this: If they are lying to me on this, and they are doing it so obviously, this can only mean that they have been doing it all along. This means that you have to review the very foundations of your thinking. You see, our german grandfathers went to their graves as the assholes of the universe. There is nothing to discuss about this. Still, they knew a bit about the era they had lived in. And twenty years on, our media are telling us to support those fascists in the Ukraine? This is the decisive overstretch of the Western empire which we have all embraced with all our (very german) credulity towards the state. It hearts but we have to define what is true and what is detestably rightwing, and what is not.

      • germanboy
        February 17, 2017 at 7:00 am

        You’re absolutely right.
        Although I’m not an expert in Iceland’s foreign/internal policies, I do feel that we need to fight against the belligerent responses that have been emerging in the past years, not least because any escalation with Russia / a new cold war, will potentiall devastate Europe – and we’ve had enough of this.

  13. Abe
    February 16, 2017 at 12:01 pm

    The “smoking gun” is Israeli interference in our politics to advance Israeli “security interests”.

    Not like it ever happened before:
    https://www.c-span.org/video/?c4549995/george-w-bush-iraq-threat

  14. Lin Cleveland
    February 16, 2017 at 1:07 pm

    Hey there, Ray McGovern! Thank you so much for exposing us to the truth. Just this week I heard an MSM reporter speak of Russian hacking as if the politically motivated accusation is a proven fact. The reporter didn’t even say “alleged” hacking and I thought that omission a gross attempt to propagandize the U.S. citizen.

  15. mike
    February 16, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    Isn’t it obvious? The Russians have infiltrated the German intelligence agencies!

    • Abe
      February 16, 2017 at 2:26 pm

      Die Anstalt, broadcast by the German TV channel ZDF. on trans-Atlantic swinger clubs
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WkldaRRPAw4

    • Patricia Victour
      February 16, 2017 at 2:42 pm

      I am assuming you are being facetious. If not . . .

      • Mike
        February 17, 2017 at 12:05 am

        A little snark there

    • rosemerry
      February 16, 2017 at 3:48 pm

      Obviously Putin’s influence from the 1980s when he was an evil spy in Dresden and learnt German too well!!

    • Sam F
      February 16, 2017 at 4:03 pm

      I thought it was mermaids and witches and sorcerers. Or perhaps they infiltrated Russia first.

  16. Patricia Victour
    February 16, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    If your cable/satellite company offers it, give RTAmerica/International a look – It’s on DISH in my area, or online at http://www.rt.com. What a breath of fresh air after the miasma at CNN/MSNBC, etc. Yes, it’s state-sponsored, but at least you are aware you are watching state-sponsored content, whereas here in good ole USA, we are supposed to lap up every drop of spoiled milk fed to us by the MSM. If you are a better-informed person, you can quickly spot any possible Russian “propaganda” and then check for yourself with your own trusted sources (Consortium, etc.) to see if you are being misled. Chances are, generally, that you are not.

  17. ctrl-z
    February 16, 2017 at 3:48 pm

    Breaking: German intelligence report shows Russia was too busy hacking the U.S. election to interfere in Germany’s.

  18. rosemerry
    February 16, 2017 at 3:51 pm

    I live in France and recently saw “Le Monde” headlines that Germany and France were worried by fears of Russian interference in their elections this year. This is just hyping up fears among so many who absorb the MSM, but based on NO FACTS.
    Russia is just a convenient patsy.

  19. February 17, 2017 at 1:40 am

    Snowden has told us the economies of Japan, Germany and Brazil, three of America’s greatest commercial competitors, have been accessed by NSA and each of those countries can be shut down in an afternoon – their electric power, water supply, air traffic control, railways, fuel distribution for vehicles, everything.

    Ms Merkel’s choice is compete submission to requirements or the collapse of the German economy.

  20. February 17, 2017 at 2:17 am

    Once again, our suspicions are confirmed. The “Russia-did-it” story was just another lie.

  21. February 17, 2017 at 5:43 am

    I think that Ray McGovern’s statement that Americans should rely on RT rather than the MSM is so far-fetched that he sounds a lot like Donald Trump. Statements like that tend to help to portray Consortium News as fake news. I know I’ll hear all kinds of flak for saying this but take a good look at the opinions of a lot of the posters here supporting Donald Trump. Obama is not President any more. It is time to take a good long look at who you are supporting.

    • Sam F
      February 17, 2017 at 8:04 am

      It is better to balance suspect sources than to trust any of them. The US oligarchy controls all large US media, so they are primarily propaganda operations. The US right wing seeks to create enemies to steal public funds for the MIC and Israel, which makes RT an essential balancing source.

      Very few of the commenters here are naive about Trump, and few have made conclusions.

  22. elwood
    February 24, 2017 at 1:50 am

    I have found that a daily wipedown with a solution of 60% vinegar and 40% citric acid eliminates almost all the commies from under my bed. Incidentally, it also tones my tummy and removes the bags from under my eyes.

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