‘Too Big to Fail’: Russia-gate One Year After VIPS Showed a Leak, Not a Hack

One year later, the VIPS memo contending that the DNC emails were leaked and not hacked has yet to be successfully challenged. Meanwhile, the country sinks deeper into the morass of the new McCarthyism, comments Patrick Lawrence.

By Patrick Lawrence
Special to Consortium News

A year has passed since highly credentialed intelligence professionals produced the first hard evidence that allegations of mail theft and other crimes attributed to Russia rested on purposeful falsification and subterfuge. The initial reaction to these revelations—a firestorm of frantic denial—augured ill, and the time since has fulfilled one’s worst expectations. One year later we live within an institutionalized proscription of proven reality. Our discourse consists of a series of fence posts and taboos. By any detached measure, this lands us in deep, serious trouble. The sprawl of what we call “Russia-gate” now brings our republic and its institutions to a moment of great peril—the gravest since the McCarthy years and possibly since the Civil War. No, I do not consider this hyperbole.

Much has happened since Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity published its report on intrusions into the Democratic Party’s mail servers on Consortium News on July 24 last year. Parts of the intelligence apparatus—by no means all or even most of it—have issued official “assessments” of Russian culpability. Media have produced countless multi-part “investigations,” “special reports,” and what-have-yous that amount to an orgy of faulty syllogisms. Robert Mueller’s special investigation has issued two sets of indictments that, on scrutiny, prove as wanting in evidence as the notoriously flimsy intelligence “assessment” of January 6, 2017.

Indictments are not evidence and do not need to contain evidence. That is supposed to come out at trial, which is very unlikely to ever happen. Nevertheless, the corporate media has treated the indictments as convictions.

Numerous sets of sanctions against Russia, individual Russians, and Russian entities have been imposed on the basis of this great conjuring of assumption and presumption. The latest came last week, when the Trump administration announced measures in response to the alleged attempt to murder Sergei and Yulia Skripal, a former double agent and his daughter, in England last March. No evidence proving responsibility in the Skripal case has yet been produced. This amounts to our new standard. It prompted a reader with whom I am in regular contact to ask, “How far will we allow our government to escalate against others without proof of anything?”

This is a very good question.

Cover of 2001 book that looks back on the earlier period of anti-Russia hysteria.

There have been many attempts to discredit VIPS50 as the group’s document is called. There has been much amateurish journalism, false reporting, misrepresentation, distortion, misquotation, and omission. We have been treated to much shoddy science, attempts at character assassination, a great deal of base name-calling, and much else. Russia is routinely advanced as the greatest threat to democracy Americans now face. Is there any denying that we live amid an induced hysteria now comparable to the “Red under every bed” period of the 1950s?

None of this has altered the basic case. VIPS and forensic scientists working with it have continued their investigations. New facts, some of which alter conclusions drawn last year, have come to light, and these are to be addressed. But the basic evidence that Russia-gate is a false narrative concocted by various constituents of national power stands, difficult as this is to discern. Scrape back all that is ethically unacceptable and unscrupulously conveyed into the public sphere and you find that nothing has changed: No one “hacked” the Democratic party’s mail in the summer of 2016. It was leaked locally. From what one can make out, it was done to expose the party leadership’s corrupt efforts to sink Bernie Sanders’ insurgent campaign to win the Democratic nomination.

But in another, very profound way, more has changed since VIPS50 was published than one could have imagined a year ago. American discourse has descended to a dangerous level of irrationality. The most ordinary standards of evidentiary procedure are forgone. Many of our key institutions—the foreign policy apparatus, the media, key intelligence and law-enforcement agencies, the political leadership—are now extravagantly committed to a narrative none appears able to control. The risk of self-inflicted damage these institutions assume, should the truth of the Russia-gate events emerge—as one day it surely will—is nearly incalculable. This is what inspires my McCarthy and Civil War references. Russia-gate, in a phrase, has become too big to fail.

This column is an attack on no one. However it may be read, it is not intended as another round of vituperative argument adding to the din and fog we already suffer daily. No shred of ideology informs it. I write a lament—this for all we have done to ourselves and our institutions this past year, and to the prospect of an orderly world, and for all that must somehow be done to repair the damage once enough of us indeed recognize what has been done.

New VIPS Findings

Binney: Dares anyone to prove remote speeds.

The forensic scientists working with VIPS continued their research and experiments after VIPS50 was published. So have key members of the VIPS group, notably William Binney, the National Security Agency’s former technical director for global analysis and designer of programs the agency still uses to monitor internet traffic. Such work continues as we speak, indeed. This was always the intent: “Evidence to date” was the premise of VIPS50. Over the past year there have been confirmations of the original thesis and some surprises that alter secondary aspects of it. Let us look at the most significant of these findings.

At the time I reported on the findings of VIPS and associated forensic scientists, that the most fundamental evidence that the events of summer 2016 constituted a leak, not a hack, was the transfer rate—the speed at which data was copied. The speed proven then was an average of 22.7 megabytes per second. That speed matches what is standard when someone with physical access uses an external storage device to copy data from a computer or server and is much faster than a remote hack, reliant on communications topology available at the time, could achieve.

Binney experimented into the autumn. By mid-autumn he had tested several routes—from East Coast locations to cities in eastern Europe, from New Jersey to London. The fastest internet transfer speed achieved, during the New Jersey–to–Britain test, was 12.0 megabytes of data per second. Since this time it has emerged from G-2.0’s metadata that the detected average speed—the 22.7 megabytes per second—included peak speeds that ran as high as 49.1 megabytes per second, impossible over the internet. “You’d need a dedicated, leased, 400–megabit line all the way to Russia to achieve that result,” Binney said in a recent interview.

To my knowledge, no one with an understanding of the science involved, including various former skeptics, any longer questions the validity of the specific finding based on the observed transfer rate. That remains the bedrock evidence of the case VIPS and others advance without qualification. No one—including the FBI, the CIA, and the NSA—has come out against this finding,” Binney said Monday. “Anyone who says the speed we demonstrated can be achieved remotely, our position is ‘Let’s see it. We’ll help any way we can.’ There hasn’t been anyone yet.”

There is also the question of where and when leaks were executed. Research into this has turned out differently.

Evidence last year, based on analysis of the available metadata, showed that the copy operation date-stamped July 5, 2016, took place in the Eastern U.S. time zone. But Forensicator, one of the chief forensic investigators working on the mail-theft case anonymously, published evidence in May showing that while there was activity in the Eastern zone at the time of that copy, there was also a copy operation in the Pacific time zone, where clocks run three hours earlier that EST. In an earlier publication he had also reported activity in the Central time zone.

Plainly, more was awaiting discovery as to the when and where of the copy operations. The identity of Guccifer 2.0, who claimed to be a Romanian hacker but which the latest Mueller indictment claims is a construct of the GRU, Russian military intelligence, has never been proven. The question is what G–2.0 did with or to the data in question. It turns out that both more, and less, is known about G–2.0 than was thought to have been previously demonstrated. This work has been completed only recently. It was done by Binney in collaboration with Duncan Campbell, a British journalist who has followed the Russia-gate question closely.

Peak Speed Established

Binney visited Campbell in Brighton, England, early this past spring. They examined all the metadata associated with the files G–2.0 has made public. They looked at the number of files, the size of each, and the time stamps at the end of each. It was at this time that Binney and Campbell established the peak transfer rate at 49.1 megabytes per second.

But they discovered something else of significance, too. At some point G–2.0 had merged two sets of data, one dated July 5, 2016, which had been known, and another dated the following September 1, which had not been known. In essence, Campbell reverse-engineered G–2.0’s work: He took the sets of data G–2.0 presented as two and combined them back into one. “G–2.0 used an algorithm to make a downloaded file look like two files,” Binney explained. “Those two shuffled back together like a deck of cards.”

G–2.0 then took another step. Running another algorithm, he changed all the dates on all the files. With yet another algorithm, he changed the hours stamped on each file. These are called “range changes” among the professionals. The conclusion was then obvious: G–2.0 is a fabrication and a fabricator. Forensicator had already proven that the G–2.0 entity had inserted Russian “fingerprints” into the document known as the “Trump Opposition Report,” which G-2.0 had published on June 15, 2016. It is clear that no firm conclusions can be drawn at this point as to when or where G–2.0 did what he did.

Now you need to prove everything you might think about him,” Binney told me. “We have no way of knowing anything about him or what he has done, apart from manipulating the files. We detected activity in the Eastern time zone. Now we have to ask again, ‘Which time zone?’ The West Coast copy operation [discovered by Forensicator] has to be proven. All the data has been manipulated. It’s a fabrication.”

This throws various things into question. The conclusions initially drawn on time and location in VIPS50 are now subject to these recent discoveries. “In retrospect, giving ‘equal importance’ status to data pertaining to the locale was mistaken,” Ray McGovern, a prominent VIPS member, wrote in a recent note. “The key finding on transfer speed always dwarfed it in importance.”

The indictments against 12 Russian intelligence officers announced in mid–July by Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney-general, also come into question. They rest in considerable part on evidence derived from G–2.0 and DCLeaks, another online persona. How credible are those indictments in view of what is now known about G–2.0?

Binney told me: “Once we proved G–2.0 is a fabrication and a manipulator, the timing and location questions couldn’t be answered but really didn’t matter. I don’t right now see a way of absolutely proving either time or location. But this doesn’t change anything. We know what we know: The intrusion into the Democratic National Committee mail was a local download—wherever ‘local’ is.” That doesn’t change. As to Rosenstein, he’ll have a lot to prove.”

What Role does Evidence Play?

Rosenstein at the Justice Department on July 13 announcing indictments against 12 GRU agents. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Rosenstein’s predicament—and there is no indication he understands it as one—brings us to an essential problem: What is the place of evidence in American public discourse? Of rational exchange?

The questions are germane far beyond the Russia-gate phenomenon, but it is there that answers are most urgent. What is implicit in the Rosenstein indictments has been evident everywhere in our public sphere for a year or more: Make a presumption supported by circumstantial evidence or none and build other presumptions upon it until a false narrative is constructed. The press has deployed this device for as long as I have been a practitioner: “Might” or “could” or “possibly” becomes “perhaps,” “probably” and “almost certainly,” and then moves on to unqualified fact in the course of, maybe, several weeks. Now this is how our most basic institutions—not least agencies of the Justice Department—routinely operate.

This is what I mean when I refer to ours as a republic in peril.

There is the argument that certain things have been uncovered over the past year, and these are enough to conclude that Russia plots to undermine our democracy. I refer to the small number of Facebook advertisements attributed to Russians, to strings of Twitter messages, to various phishing exercises that occur thousands of times a day the world over. To be clear, I am no more satisfied with the evidence of Russian involvement in these cases than I am with the evidence in any other aspect of the Russia-gate case. But for the sake of argument, let us say it is all true.

Does this line up with the Russophobic hysteria—not too strong a term—that envelops us? Does this explain the astonishing investments our public institutions, the press, and leading political parties have made in advancing this hysteria as they did a variant of in the 1950s?

As global politics go, some serious thought should be given to a reality we have created all by ourselves: It is now likely that America has built a new Cold War division with Russia that will prove permanent for the next 20 to 30 years. All this because of some Facebook ads and Twitter threads of unproven origin? Am I the only one who sees a weird and worrisome gap between what we are intent on believing—as against thinking or knowing—and the consequences of these beliefs?

There was an orthodoxy abroad many centuries ago called Fideism. In the simplest terms, it means the privileging of faith and belief over reason. It was the enemy of individual conscience, among much else. Fideism has deep roots, but it was well around in the 16th century, when Montaigne and others had to navigate its many dangers. Closer to our time, William James landed a variant on American shores with an 1896 address called “The Will to Believe.” Bertrand Russell countered this line of thinking a couple of decades later with “Free Thought and Official Propaganda,” a lecture whose title I will let speak for itself. Twenty years ago, none other than Pope John Paul II warned of a resurgence of Fideism. It is still around, in short.

Do we suffer from it? A variant of it, I would say, if not precisely in name. There seems to be a givenness to it in the American character. I think we are staring into a 21st century rendition of it.

To doubt the hollowed-out myth of American innocence is a grave sin against the faith. It is now unpatriotic to question the Russia-gate narrative despite the absence of evidence to support it. Informal censorship of differing perspectives is perfectly routine. It is now considered treasonous to question the word of intelligence agencies and the officials who lead them despite long records of deceit. Do we forget that it was only 15 years ago that these same institutions and people deceived us into an invasion of Iraq the consequences of which still persist?

This was the question Craig Murray, the former British diplomat (who has vital information on the DNC mail theft but who has never been interviewed by American investigators) posed a few weeks ago. Eugene Robinson gave a good-enough reply in a Washington Post opinion piece shortly afterward: “God Bless the Deep State,” the headline read.

How we got here deserves a work of social psychology, and I hope someone takes up the task. Understanding our path into our self-created crisis seems to me the first step to finding our way out of it.

Patrick Lawrence, a correspondent abroad for many years, chiefly for the International Herald Tribune, is a columnist, essayist, author, and lecturer. His most recent book is Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century (Yale). Follow him @thefloutist. His web site is www.patricklawrence.us. Support his work via www.patreon.com/thefloutist.

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321 comments for “‘Too Big to Fail’: Russia-gate One Year After VIPS Showed a Leak, Not a Hack

  1. William Rood
    August 23, 2018 at 9:40 pm

    The following excerpt (p.136) from William F Pepper’s, An Act of State, The Execution of Martin Luther King explains the media hysteria of the past 18 months and the fact that a large percentage of blue pill popping Murkins and vast majority of partisan Democrats are buying into it:

    “Schapp explained that a Harvard neurologist had helped him to understand the power of the neurological impact upon human cognizance, intellectual functioning, and reasoned decision making when the same story is told over and over again. That impact makes the story a kneejerk part of the people who are exposed to it. Even if they are convinced on one occasion by powerful evidence to the contrary, the next day will usually find them reverting to the long-held belief, which has became a part of themselves – often integral to their very identity. Nothing less than some sort of intense deprogramming experience with ongoing reinforcement is required.

    “After analyzing the powerfully comprehensive control of the media by the forces who control American public policy and examining their identical policy and coverage in terms of the assassination, the systematic brainwashing of Americans in respect of this case became abundantly clear to the court, jury, and those present. Bill Schapp’s analysis and testimony highlighted the absence of the media in our courtroom. In effect by not being there, they proved his point. As noted earlier, only one local television journalist stayed.

    “Considering all of the aspects of the cover-up in this case, the ongoing media role is the most sinister precisely because it, if not powerfully controverted, as was done with the trial, perpetuates the lies and disinfor­mation from one generation to the next, for all time.”

  2. SocraticGadfly
    August 21, 2018 at 2:22 pm

    I actually used the Curveball metaphor for this, but Drake agreed that his cohorts in general acted just like the Bush-Cheney intelligence stovepiping they rightly despised. So, will VIPS even survive this, even as Lawrence does his own stovepiping? And, I”m curious about follow-up comments.

  3. Curious
    August 19, 2018 at 6:29 am

    I would like to hear Mr Binney at some point explain many salient points of the Vault 7 release by Wikileaks which specifies the NSA has the capability to create anything on the web and give it a false ID. They can pretend to be Chinese, North Korean, Russian, Iranian etc etc.

    Many of the comments below would be astounded at the ability today in the false IDs of internet traffic. We can’t trust our own NSA because they are a virus effecting so much of the web, that the identification process of an actual sender could take many months, and I think people forget this as they assume the NSA is American and therefore on our side in all things, protecting the US of A.

    So when one talks about ‘fingerprints’ and inserted ‘bears’ that Russia is stupid enough to leave behind (appartantly) one should also consider some releases to be non other than our own NSA, to cover a trail.

    It is still reasonable to assume any real “hack” is in the NSA files already and if they wanted to provide the proof they could. But, just as the US didn’t release any data on MH17 despite having a satelite over Ukraine at the time may just be more proof the NSA doesn’t want to tell the truth or the record of events. So, one should have a very healthy dose of scepitism whenever the intelligence community leaks out info for the masses. I still believee it was a leak, and not a hack, but let the NSA come forward with counter evidence (once they are through making it up)

    In the case of MH17 the Dutch investigators were working with the very people who may have shot down the plane (SBU) and refused to enter the Russian raw data of the flight into their records of the tragedy. Oh, what money can buy.

  4. Tom
    August 18, 2018 at 11:00 pm

    Another dimension of this. The FCC and Congress did away with net neutrality. Now legally all providers can manipulate customers’ services any way they want. They can sell you a “fast plan”, but then slow it down at any time. Has this affected any hackers in any way? There’s no way it couldn’t.

  5. John
    August 18, 2018 at 4:45 pm

    This “copy speed” myth keeps coming up, even though it is easily rebutted by an average it tech and the Forensicator’s own notes. Plus, this myth ignores Forensicator’s own evidence that is -was- a hack.

    – The “cp” command referenced by the Forensicator as used can only transfer files over lan protocols like smb and nfs. These protocols are almost never used to transfer files “over the internet” for gazillions of reasons, but Forernsicator’s “copy speed vs internet speed” analysis is -completely- dependent on this being the process the supposed hackers would use.
    – Standard operating procedure for transferring files over a wan or internet is to gather files to a staging area, compress them, and then send them over the wan. VIPS interpretation of Forensicator’s analysis just -presumes- to flip that order on its head: it presumes the copier never staged the data, just copying the data over the WAN then compressing it afterward. Almost nobody does this.
    – The commands needed to generate the “metadata” Forensically analyzed (command line ‘cp’ and ‘rar’) almost never exist in real-world Windows environments. I’ve worked on 100,000+ Windows systems, and only seen two with both of these commands available. (both in my own test lab.) However, these commends do exist: embedded in the FancyBear malware and a handful of other remote-hack malware suites. This points strongly to a malware-based remote hack, not an inside job. (Or that this “metadata” did not originate from copying at the DNC.
    – The commands needed to generate the “metadata” Forensically analyzed (command line ‘cp’ and ‘rar’) require extensive Linux/Unix skills to use properly. The level of skills needed means a technically skilled person or group copied the files, and effectively rules out unskilled possible sources like Seth Rich.
    – And again, all Forensicator conclusions -presume- the “metadata” was generated by copying that happened “from the DNC”, and not as part of post-processing of already collected data on a elsewhere. This presumption is highly suspect, since the dates on the metadata (07/06/16, etc) occurred -after- preparation for the data release started (registering “DCLinks.com” domain, etc.)

    • Winston Smith
      August 26, 2018 at 11:59 pm

      John, excellent comment. I wanted to respond to a few points that you had made in the below response. Thanks again for furthering the technical discussion and feel free to respond to any points you disagree with. – Anonymous

      John:
      “This “copy speed” myth keeps coming up, even though it is easily rebutted by an average it tech and the Forensicator’s own notes.”

      Response:
      John’s comment is an excellent one that I mostly agree with. I’m not convinced that G2’s copy speed provides much information about the source of the DNC emails that Wikileaks published, and Forensicator himself has made this point. I believe it’s entirely possible that the July 5, 2016 copy operation was a subsequent copy operation after the DNC emails were already ex-filtrated, as John suggested in his comment. I will explain why this may be irrelevant in response to John’s next comment in the following paragraph.

      John:
      “Plus, this myth ignores Forensicator’s own evidence that is -was- a hack.” (I assume John meant “Plus, this myth ignores Forensicator’s own evidence that this -was- a hack.”, and will respond based on that assumption).

      Response:
      I’m not familiar with Forensicator ever stating “this was a hack”, but will address the point as if John is suggesting “this was a hack”. The main issue with John’s comment seems to be that he, like the article’s author, suggested that we are in a “either or” situation (Either the DNC emails were leaked or hacked, proof of a hack makes a leak impossible, and vice versa). This argument conflates the source of the DNC email hack with the source of the DNC emails that Wikileaks published. These are two separate issues.

      *******In an August 6, 2016 interview with RT’s Going Underground, Julian Assange himself confirmed that the DNC emails that were leaked to Wikileaks came from a separate source than the DNC emails that appeared to have been hacked and published online with circumstantial evidence of Russian involvement (“Russian Fingerprints”/metadata on select documents such as the Trump Opposition Report). In the same interview, Assange suggests that the DNC probably was hacked by at least one state level actor.

      Note: The relevant technical discussion can be found from the 2 minute mark in the video to the 11 minute mark.

      ****Julian Assange technical discussion of DNC email Hack/Leak(Important):

      https://youtu.be/1IfrNZfqGsQ?t=2m

      Even the circumstantial evidence of Russian involvement may have been intentionally planted, according to Forensicator’s work: https://theforensicator.wordpress.com/did-guccifer-2-plant-his-russian-fingerprints/).

      John’s comment:
      “The level of skills needed means a technically skilled person or group copied the files, and effectively rules out unskilled possible sources like Seth Rich.”

      Response:
      Again, John seems to be conflating the source of the DNC email hack with the source of the DNC emails that were published by Wikileaks. Forensicator is not claiming Seth Rich was the source. But we also can’t rule out the possibility of an internal leak of DNC emails to Wikileaks that came from a seperate source than whoever hacked the DNC (allegedly Guccifer 2/GRU based on Mueller’s indictments). If an internal leaker can’t be ruled out, than Seth Rich can’t be ruled out.

      John’s comment:
      “– And again, all Forensicator conclusions -presume- the “metadata” was generated by copying that happened “from the DNC”, and not as part of post-processing of already collected data on a elsewhere.”

      Response:
      This is incorrect. Initially Forensicator and others had uncovered G2 metadata suggesting that the July 5 2016 G2 copy operation took place on a computer with Eastern time zone settings in force(Not necessarily the DNC). Additional research over the following year by Forensicator and others suggests that G2 may have manipulated much of the metadata with the potential use of a virtual machine, intentionally planted “Russian Fingerprints”, and uncovered new metadata suggesting at least one file operation by G2 in the Pacific time zone. Forensicator does not claim that the G2 July 5, 2016 copy operation took place from the DNC (but did not exclude that possibility either based on initial findings of Eastern time zone metadata from G2’s July 5 2016 file transfer/copy operation). Based on these findings by Forensicator over the last year, Forensicator now argues that we can’t “presume” much of anything about G2’s location based on the appearance of manipulated metadata.

      https://theforensicator.wordpress.com/guccifer-2-ngp-van-metadata-analysis/

      https://theforensicator.wordpress.com/2017/08/24/corrections-and-clarifications/

      https://theforensicator.wordpress.com/guccifer-2s-west-coast-fingerprint/

  6. Laura Dorais
    August 17, 2018 at 2:38 am

    In my previous comment in regard to Stalin, I made a typographical error. Stalin killed 40 to 60 million of his own Russian people. Quietly.

    • August 17, 2018 at 3:04 am

      Stalin is dead and was a USA ally .

      And Mao killed more.

      Know how many American Indians were murdered by Europeans ?

      How far back do you wanna go !

    • Archie
      August 17, 2018 at 10:12 pm

      First, Stalin was Georgian, not Russian. To say he killed “40 to 60 million of his own Russian people” just shows you don’t know what you’re talking about. Second, I hate to quibble about figures that are truly horrific anyway, but historians simply don’t back you up. A quick perusal of the Wikipedia article linked below will give you lower numbers (about 50 percent lower).

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Number_of_deaths_in_the_Soviet_Union_under_Joseph_Stalin

      Third, you’re saying 40 to 60 million “Russian people.” Why do you think they were all Russian? A huge number were Ukrainian. Then there were Armenians, Azerbaijanis, Georgians, Kazakhs, Uzbeks, and many others. Even half the number you provide wouldn’t have been made up only of Russians.

      I’m sure you’ve been to Russia. What does that prove? I went there too–when Gorbachev was in power. It was nothing like the Brezhnev era (when you went). I’m not saying it was all rosy–I certainly wouldn’t want to live there–and there were KGB everywhere, but they were a lot less obvious than the ones you’re describing.

      Really, there’s no point in discussing Russia or the Soviet Union if you don’t know much about either.

      • John
        August 21, 2018 at 1:02 am

        40+ million dead and you are quibbling about ethnicity?

        Make it simple: If those people were under Stalin’s control, then they were “his people” and he is responsible for their fate, regardless of ethnicity.

        • Archie
          August 21, 2018 at 1:25 am

          You didn’t read very carefully. Reread to see that I disputed that number. Scholars tend to think it is around half that. In the third sentence, I wrote, “Second, I hate to quibble about figures that are truly horrific anyway, but historians simply don’t back you up.” I linked to a Wikipedia article that gives upper estimates that were roughly half the figures Laura gave. That’s a huge difference, even though the numbers are still horrific.

          And I wasn’t “quibbling about ethnicity.” Millions of Ukrainians, Georgian, and others were among the dead. Furthermore, Russians don’t think of Stalin as one of them. Nationalities were quite important in the Soviet Union and still are in modern-day Russia.

          Let’s just get the facts straight. Saying they were “his own Russian people” is an insult to the millions of non-Russians killed by Stalin.

          Seems to me you’re trolling.

    • R. Merrill
      August 20, 2018 at 9:05 am

      You don’t offer any sources or evidence. Why not? In fact, you are flat wrong. Why do you circulate untruths? What’s your point?

  7. Gerry L Forbes
    August 16, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    1. Can the DNC server be used to convict anybody but the DNC and Crowdstrike since they refused to let the FBI examine the server, breaking the chain of custody? About the indictments handed down so far all one can really say is “luncheon is served!” (“Any good prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich”). And how is lying to the FBI a crime unless it meets the standard of obstruction of justice? Do they put you under oath before questioning you? Isn’t this just an infringement of Fifth Amendment rights? Must be one of Schumer’s six ways from Sunday.

    2. The amount of discord sown by Russian trolls probably pales in comparison to that sown by American trolls and wouldn’t even register compared to the discord sown by daily headlines screaming about Russian meddling.

    3. The solution is to teach critical thinking but this will not happen because it is not in the interests of politicians, lobbyists, or advertisers and the businesses that these groups serve.Even Harvard University prefers to protect its students from “fake news’ by censorship rather than education.

    • Rob
      August 17, 2018 at 12:50 pm

      “Lying” to the FBI is exactly how they indicted Michael Flynn. His interrogators asked questions to which they already had the answers (via telephone taps), and when he gave them wrong information, they nailed him. For all we know, he simply forgot specific details in giving his answers and was not trying to deceive, but that possibility seems to be beside the point. This is a common tactic that the FBI uses to induce suspects and witnesses to cooperate. Clever, but backhanded, IMO

    • John
      August 18, 2018 at 5:27 pm

      Gerry

      I”ve actually MADE the decision the DNC made in the aftermath of their hack-attack.

      – Do you preserve the servers as “evidence” and spend a half-million dollars on new hardware and rebuilding your network, plus many days or weeks of downtime and potential data loss? (where you don’t HAVE weeks to handle the downtime)
      – Or do you just clean up the network in a couple of days and keep working, relying on the court-admissable attack report from your security vendor for any subsequent legal issues?

      I have always made the second choice, because in the end, getting the organization working again trumps every other concern. And I would never second-guess an organization that made that choice.

      • MackD
        August 19, 2018 at 8:40 pm

        The DNC has claimed they made a cooy of the server and gave that to investigators for evidentiary purposes.

  8. Laura Dorais
    August 16, 2018 at 8:35 am

    There were many false negative ads about Hillary and Bill Clinton leading up to the election that influenced the election! Please. These were fabrications. Who created these? Also, it is not only “leaked” or “hacked” information we are talking about here. Russia has been a totalitarian country for two thousand years. Stalin being the worst. It is estimated he killed 40 to 60,000 of his own people. Putin has killed many people. I experienced the mindset of Russian reign in 1981 on a visit to Kharkov, Odessa, Kiev, Moscow and then Leningrad. Everywhere we tourists traveled even on the Aeroflot flight to Moscow, we were accompanied by two KGB in three piece suits wearing machine guns. Nice! I mean, Horrorshow!!! We were herded from one State shop or factory (the famous milk factory!!! Another story.) to another. We were not allowed to use taxis or buses for independent sightseeing or in the case of some of us, for the visiting of relatives. One couple had their roll of film ripped out of their camera in front of us. My suitcase was ransacked at one point and a bottle of Russian men’s cologne was deliberately broken by the searchers. On the final leg of our journey, in the shuttle bus waiting to go to the airport, one man was hauled off and strip searched by screaming women guards. It was done out of our sight while we sweated in agony and fear for this man, but you for sure could hear the screaming. They let him back on the bus, but it was one hell of a negative experience. There are many beautiful things to see in Russia, including an astounding Van Gogh of emerald green early morning irrigated fields at the Hermitage that made tears pop out onto my lower eyelids. An involuntary and extreme explosion of joy. The beauty of the Russian language is rhythmic poetry. The docents at various museums were quite sweet. There was one instance wherein I got in the wrong line for viewing the St Peter and St Paul fortress in Leningrad and instead I wound up at a funeral in an Orthodox Christian church below the main fortress. The reaction of the mourners to seeing a stranger in their midst was very kind and accepting. I think they thought I was Russian. Out on the streets, the people walked with their eyes downcast. They were not allowed by the authorities to look at us or talk to us. We tourists, were not allowed to visit with the people or talk to them. If Russian people wanted to travel from their city to another, they had to fill out travel forns at their local post office for permission, detailing length and purpose of their travel. We tourists had to give an exact accounting on forms before entering the country of how much money we had on us and how much money we had on departure. I am certain every piece of luggage was thoroughly searched. And not just at departure for home, but at each departure to another city. And the big question is, why does Trump like Putin so much?????????

    • August 16, 2018 at 3:07 pm

      Because Trump wants a Trump tower in Moscow?

      My guess

      The facts are the Russian clickbait farm wasn’t a Russian government operation it was for money and there is nothing illegal about it .Most of the ads went up after the election and they had zero effect on the election.

      Hillary is now empirically the most epic embarrassment and failure in the history of the country and Democratic Party.Hillary was the weakest candidate ever and the DNC under Donna Brazille wanted to replace her because they knew it. Trump is more popular than Hillary and you blame Russia?

      So you learned nothing from your disastrous failure and will do it again.

    • irina
      August 16, 2018 at 9:07 pm

      1981 is not 2018.

      And you might want to google ‘Clinton Body Count’ if you’re worried
      about politicos offing people. In fact, a young woman investigating
      Bill Clinton’s sexual shenanigans just got dead rather suspiciously . . .

      For those who are so vituperative about Vladimir Putin, I say
      “Be careful what you wish for”. We can only hope his successor
      is as unflappable as he seems to be. (By the way, during your
      trip did you learn anything about the Siege of Leningrad in WW2 ?)
      Did you know that Putin’s parents lived through that siege, and that
      his older brother died in childhood as a result of being young and
      starving during the siege ?

      I live in Alaska and remember the ‘Golden Samovar Service’ offered
      by Alaska Airlines in the late 1980’s (direct flights to the Russian Far
      East). Now, we must fly almost all the way around the world to get
      to Siberia. How does that make sense ?

    • Ed
      August 16, 2018 at 11:18 pm

      “Russia has been a totalitarian country for two thousand years”

      That’s the funniest thing I’ve read all day.

      The rest of your comment describes what Russia was like during the soviet era. This is 2018, not 1981. None of what you experienced then is typical of Russia today. If you insist that nothing has changed in Russia, you’re going to be very shocked when you learn the truth.

    • PJB
      August 17, 2018 at 2:03 am

      All very true of the Soviet Union Laura. But Putin has won a string of valid elections. Yes, that may be hard to believe – the validity that is. But the votes he gets are closely mirrored by his popularity in opinion polls each time.

      These opinion polls include Pew and Gallup (both Western) and there was a US universities study tour of Russia that confirmed Putin’s widespread popularity.

      Why is Putin immensely popular? It’s because the 1990s under Yeltsin were a nightmare for Russians. Life expectancy plummeted as millions were thrown out of work and literally starved, froze and drank themselves to death, infant mortality soared, corruption was rampant, the oligarchs (former Communist Party apparatchiks) made their $millions and $billions from selling off Russia’s resources to Western transnational corporations. The oligarchs created private armies out of ex-KGB and other unemployed security thugs. It was Chicago under Al Capone on steroids.

      18 years later, as the World Cup just showed, Russia is a clean, organised, functional state with people rating their lives happy in numbers never seen before in such polls. Life expectancy is up, infant mortality down, the arts, sciences and education all improving and even flourishing.

      Putin’s Russia is vastly different to Stalin’s Russia. The government ordered all Soviet archives open and crimes against the people documented and towns and cities to build memorials to Lenin and Stalin’s victims etc. The week that bill passed in the Russian Duma there was a media blackout on the news in The West. Key Western newspapers ran stories that ‘Putin is the new Stalin’.

      So it may be time Laura to visit Russia again and find out for yourself if it’s changed?

    • jeff montanye
      August 17, 2018 at 5:37 am

      because he heads a russia far freer and less dangerous than the ussr which you visited? perhaps you need to go again.

    • Archie
      August 17, 2018 at 1:41 pm

      Russia has been a totalitarian country for two thousand years.

      Really? What history have you been reading? Russia hasn’t even been in existence for two thousand years. And if you’re referring to Russia under the tsars (going back beyond even 600 years) as totalitarian, you might want to brush up on the definition of totalitarianism. If you equate absolute monarchy with totalitarianism, then Western Europe was totalitarian longer than Russia.

      And when you say “has been,” that implies it still is totalitarian. In what sense is Russia under Putin actually totalitarian?

      I’m expecting, of course, the usual hyperbolic denunciations of Putin, along with the requisite denunciation of my remarks as being those of a Putin apologist or propagandist. Hint: I’m neither.

      Here’s the reality: Russia is the designated enemy du jour. Saddam Hussein was fine until the U.S. wanted him gone. Then he was the new Hitler. If you think the U.S. is opposed to Putin because of human rights violations, you’ve been seriously fooled by the propaganda. And you’d have to answer this question: in what ways is Putin even half as bad as the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammad bin Salman, or any of the rulers of Saudi Arabia, our great “ally”? And another: how is Saudi Arabia not “totalitarian,” to use what I gather is your sense of the term?

      • John
        August 18, 2018 at 5:12 pm

        Archie, one of the first history lessons I learned while traveling in Russia for school was the Russian mindset about “being invaded”.
        Russian has been invaded and conquered from across the steppes many, many times, by the likes of Genghis Khan and subsequent invaders. This history of invasions has lead to a kind of fatalism about invasion and acceptance of authoritarianism. So yes, Russia has been authoritarian for pretty much all of its history (more like 1400 years than 2000, but whatever), because it was always being invaded.

        And yes, Russia is authoritarian now, because you can be arrested for criticizing the government (and people routinely are.)

        • Archie
          August 18, 2018 at 8:46 pm

          I agree with a lot of what you say, but usually a distinction is made between “authoritarianism” and “totalitarianism.” And if you equate them, Europe has been “totalitarian” for most of its history.

          Now, 1400 years (for Russian history) would be a stretch. The original Russia came out of Kievan Rus was (centered mostly around Kiev, the capital of modern-day Ukraine). Scholars tend to think that the beginning of Kievan Rus was sometime in the ninth century. See the Wikipedia link below:

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kievan_Rus%27

          However, if Wikipedia isn’t good enough for you, allow me to quote the great historian Nicholas Riasanovsky, from his excellent A History of Russia:

          The early date [given in a source, The Bertinian Annals] made certain other scholars advance the date of the arrival of the Scandinavian Rus [thought to be the original founders of Kievan Rus] into Russia from A.D. 862 to “approximately A.D. 840.” (Riasanovsky, p. 24)

          Wikipedia also states that “According to Russian historiography” Prince Oleg (882-912) was the first ruler to unite the East Slavic lands into what became Kievan Rus.

          So if we consider Kievan Rus as part of historical Russia, Russian history has a span of 1136 to 1178 years, at most. And princes and tsars ruled it for most of that time (when it wasn’t the Mongols) up to 1917. By comparison, the French kings began with Merovingian dynasty in 428, giving French authoritarianism (or “totalitarianism” if you equate the two) a period of 1361 years. Of course, that excludes the years of Napoleon’s rule (and others), but you get the point.

          Way too much nonsense is spewed in America when it comes to Russia, so I’m not about to let this go.

          Also, saying Putin is authoritarian is justifiable only to the extent that he has curtailed press freedom and probably (although we don’t know) had some people killed. By comparison, however, President de Gaulle of France, who took power in a coup (unlike Putin), relied on state control of the media as well, though things have been relaxed since that time. Ultimately, I do agree that Putin is an authoritarian leader. However, I would say Erdogan, of Turkey, is significantly worse. Duterte is nightmarish, and Saudi Arabia is the closest of any country to being totalitarian, unless you talk about North Korea and China. (Although Kazakhstan is pretty bad as well.) Let’s not go down the list, however. Once again, I think you get my point.

          • Archie
            August 18, 2018 at 8:53 pm

            Also, plenty of people criticize Putin and the Russian government without being arrested. See the work of Russian documentary filmmaker Andrei Nekrasov.

          • Archie
            August 18, 2018 at 10:47 pm

            Another point of comparison, John, is the fact that Obama asserted his “right” to kill anyone anywhere who was deemed an “enemy combatant” or a “terrorist” without due process. Two Americans, Anwar al-Awlaki and his 16-year-old son were killed, in separate incidents, by drone strikes targeting them.

            No one ever proved that Anwar al-Awlaki was guilty of terrorism. It’s thought he was mostly guilty of making speeches critical of U.S. policy and supportive of the actions of al-Qaeda. Speeches! By your definition, the U.S. is an authoritarian country, and Obama was an authoritarian leader. (I personally wouldn’t argue with that idea.)

          • John
            August 18, 2018 at 11:10 pm

            In Russia, being arrested isn’t the only example of authoritarianism, just one of the the most obvious. All sorts of nominally fair government are used against dissidents: property and business seizures, officially backed fraud (like seizing businesses, committing fraud using the business, then charging the former owner with the frauds committed while the business was under gov’t control), beatings and threats by the secret police, or simply being denied work, housing and/or food because you grumbled something.

            And Andrei Nekrasov is now working FOR Putin, campaigning against the Bill Browder and the Magninsky Act and producing recent Putin fluff pieces. Browder even criticized him for asking interview questions that reminded him of past FSB questions. Citing Nekrasov as a Putin “critic” is horrible example.

          • Archie
            August 19, 2018 at 6:17 pm

            John: Andrei Nekrasov is NOT a horrible example. Clearly, you haven’t seen the documentary on Browder. And many of Browder’s claims fall apart. You’ve bought the propaganda. I’ve read enough on the Browder case to know that Nekrasov is not echoing Putin propaganda on this one.

            Putin is clearly no democrat, and I did say that I would agree that he is an authoritarian leader. (Did you read that part? Earlier, about 15 years ago, I went so far as to describe him as a fascist.) However, life in Russia is a hell of a lot freer and safer now under Putin than it ever was before. Do you know the Russian word strakh? It means fear, though more akin to horror. They lived in utter fear, pretty much until the middle of Gorbachev’s rule. This was the way Russians described their lives in the Soviet Union. Few people would describe their lives that way now.

            And under Yeltsin, corruption was rampant, US (and other Western) companies were looting the country, and crime was intense. Organized crime killings of ordinary people were routing. Scams were everywhere, and swindlers preyed on the elderly. Why are there so many “oligarchs”? A lot of the IMF and World Bank money went into the pockets of well-connected former party apparatchiks. Putin forced them to pay taxes and actually decreased their power.

            In sum, not everything Putin’s done is bad, but as I said in an earlier post, I wouldn’t want to live in Russia. You can keep citing the nonsense from cable TV if you wish, but I would ask you rather to cite any of Nekrasov’s “Putin fluff pieces” you know of without mentioning his documentary on Browder–because I disagree with you there.

          • Archie
            August 19, 2018 at 6:24 pm

            John: Also, would you like a list of authoritarian government actions in the U.S.? Tell you what: you do the research. Just do a search of various progressive websites. And dissidents aren’t punished in the U.S.? John Kiriakou and William Binney would find that hilarious.

          • Archie
            August 19, 2018 at 6:32 pm

            John: Edward Snowden? Chelsea Manning? What’s going on with Julian Assange? What did he do to warrant US interest in getting him to the US? He’s not even a US citizen. What was his crime, other than publishing information the US government didn’t want made public? What did he do that Daniel Ellsberg hadn’t done before him?

            And are you another propagandist yourself?

            You might learn a lot from reading Consortium News a bit more often–among other sources of course.

  9. rick jarvis
    August 16, 2018 at 6:54 am

    A thought provoking and authorative article which also helps to shed light on both the motivations and actions of the UK government commesurate with the Russaphobia campaign in the US. The UK and US appears in lockstep with unaccountable security agencies creating false narratives duly propagandised by the MSM and politicians in irrational constructs of fake reality to cover up their heinous crimes and degraded democracies.

  10. Bill
    August 15, 2018 at 3:24 pm

    For all you guys who thought Trump was a peace lover, here is what he’s pushing.

    By John Kiriakou
    S.J.Res. 59 is bad for a number of reasons. First and most importantly, it would provide blanket permission for the president to launch a military attack of literally any size and intensity whenever he wants without specific congressional approval. That seems obviously unconstitutional to me, although I’m not a constitutional scholar.
    Second, according to Marjorie Cohn, professor emerita at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law and former president of the National Lawyers Guild, it also would write the president a “blank check to lock up Americans who dissent against U.S. military policy.” That’s right. If you oppose U.S. military policy, the president would have the right to lock you up indefinitely without charge.
    third, the bill is (probably unconstitutionally) broad. It says that the president may, “use all necessary and appropriate force” against Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia, al-Qaeda, ISIS, the Taliban, and their “associated forces” anywhere in the world and without limitation. But it doesn’t define what “associated forces” means, nor does it define a “co-belligerent,” someone acting in support of one of these countries or groups. It allows the White House to do that for us.
    Fourth, unlike almost every other bill in Congress, this one doesn’t have a sunset clause, meaning it never expires. Congress, to remain relevant, almost always includes a sunset clause so that, if a law is working, it can be renewed. If it isn’t, it can expire. And if it’s flawed, it can be fixed. This one would just go forever.

    When things go wrong I seem to be bad
    But I’m just a soul whose intentions are good
    Oh Lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood

    The last part was by the Animals.

    • August 15, 2018 at 4:45 pm

      They already did away with the constitution under Bush

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 5:46 am

        bill that bill sounds bad and should be opposed/defeated, but as jean notes the reality occurred under bush and obama made it bipartisan. what needs to happen is the full discrediting of the war machine and the current cage match between trump and the fbi/cia/mockingbird media/dnc is doing a better job of it than anything else i have observed in my seventy years save perhaps for the attacks of ’01. one can only hope the destruction of the russiagate narrative will offer a template and procedure for a similar, final deconstruction of those earlier events and the “seven countries in five years” aka the yinon plan wars that followed and were the motivation for those attacks.

    • Realist
      August 15, 2018 at 7:42 pm

      The bill originated in congress, not the White House. The creatures in congress have plans, nay orders, to remove Trump from office, not to allow him to implement his own plans for war or peace. It’s the orders they’ve been given by their “contributors.” The wars they have in mind will fall to someone more pliable if they get their way. Have you failed to note that Trump only gets patted on the head by this congress, the media and other “important people” when he orders missiles fired at a target of their choosing? Or, more accurately, targets chosen by the entities behind the scenes who de-facto own the congress. If the constitution gets amended, ignored or stretched beyond all recognition it is because plutocrats like Jeff Bezos or Sheldon Adelson want it so, or because the intelligence agencies and the pentagon want it so, not because of what the president, the tools in congress and certainly not the citizens want.

    • Laura Dorais
      August 16, 2018 at 8:40 am

      Thank you for a most informative post.

  11. Bill
    August 15, 2018 at 3:05 pm

    So Guccifer, Cozy Bear and Fancy Bear are all just figments of someone’s imagination. Julia Ioffe’s interviews with Russian officials who knew about the interference was just a made up story. Binney’s hatred of Hillary didn’t have any influence on him. The Dutch intelligence who hacked into Fancy Bear are just making it all up. Crowd source is just a corrupt organization dedicated to Hillary. Steele is a sleazy ex agent out to hurt Trump. England and France’s fear of Russian hacking is all fanciful thinking. Thomas Rid who is somewhat of an expert on cyber security was just making up the story about how Russia did the hacking. Trump’s 30 year history with the Russians documented by David Cay Johnston and now Craig Unger is all fiction. I could go on but no one out here accepts anything that doesn’t fall into their group think.

    I’ve even seen people out here who think Putin is a nice guy.

    • Nop
      August 15, 2018 at 7:50 pm

      Shill.

    • Abby
      August 15, 2018 at 7:57 pm

      Pretty much nailed it..but you got a few things wrong. Apparently you don’t believe that VIPS proved that the DNC information came from a leak not a hack? Because if you did you would have to admit to yourself that you have been manipulated into believing a lie.

    • Realist
      August 15, 2018 at 7:59 pm

      All that rubbish you spout does make such a lovely false narrative. Maybe you ought to get a share of the award for the creative writing that the “resistance” has been spinning in their attempt at domestic regime change. Others would simply call your story what it is: the most transparent load of propaganda ever pedaled by a government that hopes to be taken seriously. Even Baghdad Bob had more credibility. Never a shred of evidence ever produced for any of it. Most of it definitively debunked. Yet you want government foreign policy impinging on war and peace with the planet’s other leading nuclear power based entirely in fantasy and delusion.

      • Pam Ryan
        August 15, 2018 at 10:09 pm

        It’s fiction. What is more, it isn’t even good fiction. It’s a Barbara. Cartland “novel”.

    • Randy
      August 15, 2018 at 11:21 pm

      “So Guccifer, Cozy Bear and Fancy Bear are all just figments of someone’s imagination.” —Probably not. They may well be real, but did they do something during 2016 that they haven’t been doing for years? Did they do something that we haven’t done to other countries countless times, including Russia? No.

      “Julia Ioffe’s interviews with Russian officials who knew about the interference was just a made up story.” —See above. There has always been interference. The question should be, was there hacking? These former Intelligence agency personnel say, ‘No’. There was no hacking, and the reasoning behind VIPS latest research is a lot more compelling than the cobbled together string of assertions that people have wished into facts. The hacking is the cornerstone of the Democratic Party’s case. If that is demonstrated to be unlikely or impossible, than the whole web of assertions should be tossed out. But people have embraced the pipe dream of getting rid of Trump, while simultaneously exonerating the Democrats.

      “(Did) Binney’s hatred of Hillary didn’t have any influence on him.” —Who knows? Does it matter? Can you refute their findings? No one else has either.

      “The Dutch intelligence who hacked into Fancy Bear are just making it all up.” —Nah. I’m sure they did collaborate with us in 2014 by warning us of intrusions. What does that have to do with 2016?

      “Crowd source is just a corrupt organization dedicated to Hillary.” —Yes. They were the security/consulting firm working at the pleasure of the presumed POTUS. How anyone can look at them as an independent organization, and take their word about any of this is beyond me.

      “Steele is a sleazy ex agent out to hurt Trump.” —Nah. He just wants to get paid for the slime he supplied to the Democrats, then the Republicans.

      “England and France’s fear of Russian hacking is all fanciful thinking.” —Well, no. But their hand wringing over it is pure theatre for the benefit of their allies, the USA. As has been stated before, this hacking and cyber spycraft is a longstanding, ongoing practice.

      “Thomas Rid who is somewhat of an expert on cyber security was just making up the story about how Russia did the hacking.” —Who is Thomas Rid? What are his sources?I’ll bet they all go back to the January assertion/assertion, made by Clapper (a known perjurer) that the Wikileaks materials were hacked. Have you read the Jan assessment?

      “Trump’s 30 year history with the Russians documented by David Cay Johnston and now Craig Unger is all fiction.” —Not at all. The oligarchs (including the Clinton’s) have plenty of business dealings with other oligarchs all over the world. It’s hard for us little people to comprehend, really.

      “I could go on but no one out here accepts anything that doesn’t fall into their group think.” —Accusing those who need some proof (any proof) of the legitimacy of these allegations, before we ratchet up another cold war for the sake of cleaning up a botched election by cocky Democrats… accusing those sorts of people of ‘group think’? Are you mad?

    • Fran
      August 15, 2018 at 11:57 pm

      You haven’t provided a single ‘fact’ for us to accept. If anything you’ve done exactly what he talked about where vague presumptions get thrown out with no evidence to back them, and repeated until over time they are talked about as if they are actual fact. Are the Dutch intelligence making it all up? I have no idea and neither do you because we have seen no facts to support what has been claimed. Your basically taking what was reported on faith. That pretty much goes for every point you made. If I was on a jury I wouldn’t convict a guy of robbery because the police wrote a report and said ‘we all get together and we agree he is the robber’. I’d want to see evidence to prove it. Why would you expect me to give any less consideration when someone says the President is a traitor? Say what you will about the VIPS report but what can’t be argued is that they didn’t just make an assessment, they laid out the specific facts to make their case and it’s all publicly available, so we can rebut specific contentions and debate the evidence as they’ve presented it. That’s not in the case with any of the examples you’ve mentioned.

    • Skip Scott
      August 16, 2018 at 2:31 am

      Yes Bill Cash-

      There are even those of us who know the difference between genuine commenter presenting a rational argument based on evidence and a troll engaging in “Gish gallop”.

      • Realist
        August 16, 2018 at 3:50 am

        “Gish gallop.” That is a very apt expression for what we see all too often from the apologists for the lengthy deep state false narrative concerning Russiagate in all its manifestations. It simply means tossing everything including the kitchen sink into the discussion no matter how trivial, irrelevant or misleading, impeding the ability of any debater to address all the fallacies simply for lack of time or available print space. The practitioner of the gallop and his acolytes then assert that all points not refuted must be held as true by the opposition and, in this way, they win the argument in their small minds. It’s the tactic of choice by a specific creationist named Gish in the ongoing debate between religious creationists and scientific evolutionists, which the former can never hope to win on the facts or their interpretation. Regular folks often use the expression “baffling them with bullshit” to describe the same approach used in innumerable contexts. Great characterisation of Bill’s argument, Skip.

    • August 16, 2018 at 3:33 am

      Putin makes the USA look decent. I never imagined in my wildest dreams ever having to defend Russia or tyrants like Gaddaffi

      Yet here we are

      Russia didn’t lie the world into war in Iraq and commit mass murder for profit

      Russia isn’t committing genocide in Yemen

      Russia didn’t overthrow Gaddaffi who made Libya the richest country in Africa and had education and equal rights for women

      Today they have open air slavery markets

      Putin is corrupt but doing right by his country and is popular

      The USA like Russia is ruled by olygarchs who feast on war and murder

      Russia looks like the sane one in a room full of sociopaths.Putin has shown real restraint in the face of USA aggression.

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 6:05 am

        i think you mean the usa makes putin look decent?

        • August 17, 2018 at 4:21 pm

          Geesh……yup thats what I meant…..was cooking dinner….thanks!

    • Laura Dorais
      August 16, 2018 at 8:45 am

      Thank you for your input. Russia has been a totalitarian state for more than two thousand years. Trump likes that kind of control over a population. He admires it.

      • irina
        August 16, 2018 at 11:51 am

        I agree with your sentiments about the beauty of the Russian language,
        but your sense of Russian history is sadly uninformed. You might want
        to start by reading up on the Byzantine Empire and the travels of the ‘Rus,
        then move on to the founding of Kiev, which was NOT 2,000 years ago.

      • August 16, 2018 at 3:17 pm

        Is that why democrats voted to give Trump more money for the pentagon than he even asked for?

        Is that why Obama and democrats gave him more power to spy on us before he left office?

        Fascism in the USA didn’t start with Trump in fact Trump is going after the criminals in the Bush fascist CIA and they are desperate.

        Brennan Clapper and Haden all belong in prison next to Bush and in front of The Hague for war crimes ,instead they work for MSNBC and CNN.

        Even the USSR wasn’t so blatant and this is what you defend ?

    • PJB
      August 17, 2018 at 2:10 am

      Hi Bill, see my post re Putin above. He may be somewhat authoritarian but the Russians love him for what he’s done for the average person.

      Read and listen to Stephen F Cohen, Princeton and NYU professor emeritus of Russian studies – perhaps America’s best expert on Russia.

    • jeff montanye
      August 17, 2018 at 5:58 am

      pretty much yes. putin is as nice a guy as he can be given who and what he’s up against.

      why didn’t the dnc let the fbi look at the servers? why didn’t the fbi look at seth rich’s phone or computer (or said it didn’t)? you mean crowdstrike and no it’s a corrupt organization dedicated to hillary and similarly corrupt people and organizations. why did guccifer put russian “fingerprints” into the trump dossier? how did he achieve transfer speeds that high from a remote location? you guys would have been better off saying seth rich was a russian spy. at least he was dead and couldn’t reply.

  12. August 15, 2018 at 12:00 pm

    My thanks to Patrick Lawrence, VIPS and Consortium News for unfailing integrity and intelligence in the face of ceaseless corruption and stupidity.

  13. Joe Lauria
    August 15, 2018 at 11:58 am

    Regarding comment moderation: As we have explained many times before, Consortium News does not have the staff to manually moderate the hundreds of comments we get a day to our articles. Therefore we must rely on an imperfect automated system that we have limited control over. Sometimes it pulls out comments automatically for moderation that should not have been pulled out and other times it lets go comments that should be moderated. One must have patience while we manually review those comments that have been pulled. If the comments do not violate our comments policy they are restored. If they do violate the comments policy they are deleted. Consortium News does not censor comments based on political points of view. This very article shows a wide range of opinions. We do not delete articles that do not agree with the positions taken by our authors. We delete comments that are abusive to our authors or other commenters. Accusing Consortium News of political censorship is abusive. You can read our comments policy here, which is posted on our front page.

    • O Society
      August 15, 2018 at 12:34 pm

      Thank you and all the writers for what you do, Joe Lauria. We miss Robert Parry, but things remain excellent here.

      As someone who has been and admin/ moderator many times, I don’t blame you for having an automated system. It is a thankless job and independent media aren’t going to to have the funds to pay someone the way a commercial site might.

      Which is why I am thanking you folks now.I learn a great deal from interaction here in the comments section. Thanks to all the commenters as well.

    • JWalters
      August 15, 2018 at 7:48 pm

      Joe, thank you for this statement of clarification. Best wishes in working with Akismet to get to a good spam reduction system. I recommend it include two features of the previous system. (1) Known and trusted commenters can be accepted without moderation (unless flagged by another commenter). (2) Known and previously reviewed link sources can be accepted without moderation. This can speed up the process immensely. Having developed software myself (including web software), Akismet should be able to work with you on these features. I deeply appreciate your great and important work. JWalters

  14. Kay
    August 15, 2018 at 11:39 am

    What is astonishing to me is how anyone could have believed this hoax in the first place, particularly when the Democratic party literally admitted it chooses candidates in backroom deals.
    It is lobbyists, defense contractors, corporations & the Israeli lobby that owns our politicians. Russia gate is also a smokescreen that covers up another foreign government interfering in our own & in our elections.
    Trumps largest donor is Sheldon Adelson, Israeli billionaire. We have 89 members of Congress who are dual Israelis and we just gave that fascist, genocidal state 38 BILLION in welfare.
    All our wars have been for the colonial expansion of greater Israel and the new NDAA literally authorizes war with Iran, on behalf of Israel & Saudi Arabia of course.

    I was present throughput the 2016 election and witnessed the fraud by Clinton the DNC & the FBI’s downgrading of Clinton crime was obvioua. Where in the hell was everyone else?
    Democrats wanted Clinton & her intelligence agency crowd because WAR WAS ASSURED. Democrats are addicted to war & militarism. I still meet people who had no idea that Obama was involved in five wars, with Clinton help!! And if they do know they don’t CARE.

    Democrats are lipstick on a neocon pig. Their love for war & continued denial about their corruption will continue to see them lose election after election.
    In a recent Gallop poll, Russia was at the bottom of the list of concerns for respondents. Democrats do not talk to their base. They talk at them with Russiagate. It’s old.
    I do believe the lies will be revealed and I believe that more in America know what’s really going on than not.
    62 percent of Americans don’t vote. There is a reason for that. In another recent poll 56 percent of Americans want normalized relations with Russia. It’s the elite that are,driving us to war.

    The question is what will we do to stop it

    • Ed
      August 16, 2018 at 11:25 pm

      “Democrats are lipstick on a neocon pig. ”

      True, and let’s not forget that the original neocons were Scoop Jackson democrats who infiltrated the GOP and now infest both parties.

    • jeff montanye
      August 17, 2018 at 6:23 am

      good points all. trump added the “one state solution” to the two state solution as endgames for israel/palestine acceptable to the u.s., against precedent of all prior presidents and the wishes of the likud/mossad and the u.s. foreign policy “establishment.” he recognized jerusalem as the capital of israel, again against prior u.s. precedent and much e.u./u.n., etc. opinion. he has voiced no objection to likud, etc. additional land grabs in the west bank. he has shown no interest in the current palestinian leadership because they “do not want peace.” he has put sanctions back on iran.

      why? imo because he has decided the only route to peace in the mideast and much of the world is an israel sovereign in all of palestine (as, after all, the conquests of ’67 established, legal or not), the four and a half million “palestinians” voting israeli citizens, and all peoples and nations “at war” with israel then at peace with israel. p.s. sanctions lifted on iran.

  15. Bill
    August 15, 2018 at 11:34 am

    Obama knows about the origin of this whole charade. Is it time to ask him about it?

  16. John Kirsch
    August 15, 2018 at 7:05 am

    Excellent article.
    I’m glad to see Patrick Lawrence’s work published at Consortiumnews.

  17. exiled off mainstreet
    August 15, 2018 at 2:20 am

    This looks like the last word on this depressing subject. I’ve come to the conclusion that once “intelligence” agencies become the controlling element in any regime, the rule of law is sidelined and tyranny develops. Control of information is eventually control of everything. The very existence of these agencies leads eventually and inevitably to a form of fascism, and we now have a full-blown version of it with the threat to our continued existence as the outcome.

  18. Louise
    August 14, 2018 at 10:28 pm

    Let us for the minute assume that the oligarchs are planning all of this.
    A) they are destroying the planet due to greed for resources necessary
    for their control.
    B) They enslave the population
    C) They are dreaming of a world hegemony, yet they must realize that this
    is just a dream.
    So what are their long term plans? Do they have any? Do they have a plan
    against the probability of a blowback?

    • Abby
      August 15, 2018 at 8:00 pm

      Underground bunkers. I’m serious. Do a search for them.

  19. David Otness
    August 14, 2018 at 8:20 pm

    Good to see you on here, Patrick Lawrence.

  20. KiwiAntz
    August 14, 2018 at 8:16 pm

    The headline says it all? The Russiagate lie is “to big too fail” because if this shellgame hoax concocted by the Democratic Party to mask the very thing they are accusing Russia of doing, election meddling was ever exposed, the’d be finished, as a Political Party! So the lie must go on using Russia as the scapegoat to divert public attention from Democrats colluding with the Intelligence Agencies to firstly get rid of Bernie Saunders as a Presidential Candidate then to get dirt on Trump in a attempt to conduct a soft coup to oust him from office! The corruption of the Democratic Party & the entire American establishment, comprised of its Corporate, Financial, Political, MIC & Intelligence Agencies in lockstep with a insidious MSM propagandist arm is now, so corrupt, evil & ingrained, that there’s no hope for its citizens who now live in a Stasi, Gestopo, Fascist Country whose Leaders are blaming Russia for everything to distract attention away from their race to the bottom, deathcult ambitions & their willing to risk Nuclear War with Russia too advance their lunatic plans! America is lost as a Country with no hope, no values & certainly has no moral compass or conscience!

    • exiled off mainstreet
      August 15, 2018 at 2:22 am

      This is exactly how it is at present. It is a signal disgrace and war crimes, such as the Yemen thing and suggested wars with Iran and elsewhere are the inevitable outgrowth of this situation.

    • Samuel Becorp
      August 15, 2018 at 6:31 pm

      I will take the United States’ ethos, system, morals, hope, life and future over Russia, China, Turkey, Iran, Qatar – any of the countries tou evidently admire, While I am no lover of our government’s devolution into a bunch of haggling whores, this cycle will work its way through, and America will emerge on the other side of it as still the world’s greatest country, with the most open, free, prosperous and diverse society in existence. The Stasi, Gestapo and Fascist equivalents may be found in Russia, China, Turkey, Iran, Syria, Venezuela, and client states like North Korea etc. The tendency to blame Russia for everything is unsettling, however, Russia does precious little to advance the cause of peace and prosperity, preferring oppression, repression, kleptocracy, agression, expansion and conflict to keep their grip on power. I don’t believe Russia hacked the DNC remotely, but they certainly are on the list of those who might have executed a local expropriation of data. I am pleased at the exposure of DNC/HRC lies and deceptions, but am alarmed at the participation of Russia in the exposure, as well as the gaming of the campaigns to try to entrap them – succeeding wildly in racing the DNC and Clinton into collusion to influence the election, while failing with Trump, but establishing a basis for “prosecution” for responding to the proffer of damaging information by a Russian state official. Putin has triumphed beyond his wildest dreams with the Democratic Party as his foils, seeking to trash our system to seize back power from the “other side” whom they hate. It may be that Mueller will be honest, and investigate and expose the links between the FBI, DOJ, DNC, HRC and Fusion/Steele/RUSSIA, and cause the appropriate heads to roll. If not him, then perhaps AUSA Huber in Utah under General Sessions’ guidance.

      We need to purge all those who conspired with Russia and Russian cutouts to influence our election, and stop the over-the-top retaliation against Russia for “normal” international espionage. If there were not willing American partners, they would not have had such remarkable success. That means those who sought to entrap the Trump campaign, as well as those in the Trump campaign willing to participate. Equal enforcement of the law. Crossfire Hurricane, indeed.

      • Nop
        August 15, 2018 at 7:57 pm

        Fideism; try to shake it off. Ask yourself: what actual evidence are your beliefs based on.

      • Abby
        August 15, 2018 at 8:03 pm

        You really think that one day this country will develop into utopia? Wow! What is happening now has been happening here since the country was created, but it’s getting much worse. It’s just about being done being asset stripped and soon it will be the banana republic it almost is.

  21. DavidH
    August 14, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    It would be nice to see clips of those Russian interviews of folks at the IRA (with translation) that Masha Gessen has mentioned. She said they were good interviews. Not that I think they changed any vote numbers, or one vote number…by penetrating PCs. They might have changed one vote with the facebook shares, who knows? I can see this article will take me some time, and I’m real glad yall have it up. All the while, though, we have no picture of what IRA was doing. For me, I’m pretty convinced it was just folks getting practice getting “Like”s, gauging reactions of Americans, and at the same time learning colloqual English. The gaters, though, don’t seem to be able to imagine such.

  22. August 14, 2018 at 5:28 pm

    What if, instead of colluding with Vladimir Putin to rig the election, Trump’s trail of Reese’s Pieces leads to a big filthy pile of money?

    Forget Russian hacking. We haven’t seen evidence for this story. It’s a fustercluck.

    Look at Russian laundering. That’s where the money shot is. Has 10 times the explanatory power for Trump’s behavior too.

    Trump’s IQ is lower than my thermostat in August. He’s needed so much help to recover from going broke so many times…

    Follow the Money: Trump’s Dirty Laundry

    • August 14, 2018 at 5:42 pm

      As if we dont know Trump is a corrupt greedy baboon.The problem is Clintons were worse.
      Russian money laundering?……How about Clintons getting 143 million from Uranium one to give Putin US uranium…?
      Bill Clinton flying around the world with the CEO touting the deal?
      Clinton getting 500k for one speech at a Putin bank where he touted the deal?
      And the Steele dossier compiled from top Russian government officials?
      And the FBI using the Steele dossier and Carter Page and FBI informant to lie to the FISA court and illegally spy on a candidate and sitting president?
      And Fusion GPS working with the female “russian ” lawyer who had nothing on Hillary meeting with Kushner?
      Or the FBI agent Strzok meeting in England with former CIA and Nixon dirty tricks bag man Halper?
      Strzok changing the wording to keep Hillary from being prosecuted for her illegal servers?
      Saying “we wont let that happen” about a Trump win?

      Trump is a corrupt business man no doubt but so far there is zero evidence of collusion and this witchhunt goes on and on…..like it did with Clinton till they found a soiled dress….

      Trump wants Trump towers in Moscow not WW3 …….democrats are pushing for nuclear war with Russia with zero evidence and so far Putin has proved to be the only sane one in the room.

      I dont care

      • GKJames
        August 14, 2018 at 6:04 pm

        That you don’t like the Clintons is clear. Less so is your allegation that “[D]emocrats are pushing for nuclear war with Russia. Who is doing it, and how are they going about it? “Zero evidence”, indeed.

        • Anonymot
          August 14, 2018 at 7:37 pm

          Well, James, either you have a selective memory or a short one or you weren’t paying attention. When your lady friend, Hillary, was at State she began the entire vituperative anti-Putin, hate-Russia affair. She proposed loud, clear, and constantly that we should more actively enter the Syrian “regime change” war that we had planned and set in motion. Among other things – and primarily – she proposed that we declare Syria a no-fly zone for any planes, but ours. That plan was clearly intended to create a conflict with Russia and their aerial warfare against terrorist groups, including those we backed. It was a direct attempt to initiate a military conflict with Russia and all parties saw it as such.

          Fortunately, the only clear head around stepped in and stopped the process at the last minute.

          Now, you may think Clinton is brilliant, but she neither knew anything about foreign affairs nor cared about them then and has not learned since. She was simply the bullhorn for the CIA and the other Deep State components. She said what she was told to say with no indication that she understood it – and if she really understood it, that’s a worse indictment than if she was just the ventriloquist’s dummy.

          • GKJames
            August 15, 2018 at 6:31 am

            It’s remarkable how inchoate hatred of Clinton has personalized policy to such a degree as to eliminate from the equation the many other actors who shape US foreign policy. First, she was Secretary of State and, as such, was acting in pursuit of the president’s policies. Second, those policies were squarely within the traditional, and very much bipartisan, foreign policy consensus that’s been in place since 1945. Meddling in other countries (“regime change”) is an American trait, not something unique to Clinton. (One feels compelled to add, in today’s irony-starved environment, that regime change in Iran is very much the explicit policy of the current administration, yet one hears nothing about “war-mongering” despite the persistent threats of war from US and Israeli officials.) Third, a no-fly zone was one of several policy considerations, and it was up for discussion BEFORE Russia’s military intervention in Syria. That the internal deliberations among US officials included some in favor and some against simply speaks to the process by which decisions are made. Fourth, the Obama administration — wisely averse to getting more deeply involved in Syria’s civil war — was mocked for pusillanimity (references to Munich ’38 were common) by Republicans for NOT imposing a no-fly zone and doing more to provide lethal support to Assad’s opposition. Fifth, that one might disagree with advocates of a no-fly zone is not the same as saying that there would have been zero advantages to such a move. It was the uncertainty of its effectiveness and the open, What then?, question which prevailed. But to say that it “was clearly intended to create a conflict with Russia”, let alone by Clinton all by her lonesome, defies reality.

          • LarcoMarco
            August 15, 2018 at 2:56 pm

            Killary called for a no-fly zone in Syria during her final debate with Dumpsterfire. How can there be a no-fly zone without engaging Russian planes in-air and destroying their air base in Latakia? Warmongering. Just another reason she lost votes for potus.

          • Randy
            August 15, 2018 at 11:27 pm

            Well said.

          • Ed
            August 16, 2018 at 11:31 pm

            That is a good call. Neither of the Clintons are intelligent at all. At best they exhibit a kind of low animal cunning that is repugnant to anyone with a functioning intellect and moral code. People like the Clintons say and do things for reasons that wouldn’t even occur to a normal human being.

        • August 14, 2018 at 10:00 pm

          Hillary Clinton’s record is of mass murder and chaos and coups

          What do you think all of this is about

          Afghanistan
          Iraq
          Syria
          Libya
          Iran
          Etc

          It all a proxy war with Russia
          It’s about pipelines and Europe and keeping the USA in the Middle East

          Top US General Warns Syrian “No-Fly” Zone Means War with Russia

          https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.globalresearch.ca/top-us-general-warns-syrian-no-fly-zone-means-war-with-russia/5547581/amp
          https://www.google.com/amp/
          Hillary wanted the no fly zone and called Putin Hitler

          • michael
            August 15, 2018 at 5:30 am

            The Clintons abrogated the Reagan agreements with Gorbachev to keep NATO to the west of reunified Germany, ringing Russia with NATO bases and provoking Russian actions. American and British oligarchs (like Bill Browder) descended on Russia under American puppet Yeltsin to plunder Russia, along with quick study Russian oligarchs (many of whom fled to the West, particularly to London, with the money). Putin put an end to that, and the Clintons had a conniption, since they were counting on fortunes for themselves. Clintons delivered the meaningless Kosova war, as well as in Chinagate, offshoring our technology technology jobs to permanent free trade status China, which was designed to further pressure Russia but may come back to haunt us, as did the Clintons’ repeal of Glass Steagall in 2008. Putin is popular for reversing much of what the Clintons’ did to Russia, and Russian life expectancy has gone up by 5 years since 2005 (American life expectancy has declined, and is below the OECD countries in aggregate).

          • GKJames
            August 15, 2018 at 6:53 am

            I recognize that hyperbole is the order of the day. But to lay at Clinton’s feet responsibility for “mass murder [really??] and chaos and coups” in the countries you identify surely is carrying your highly selective rage too far. If memory serves, it was some other guy who invaded Afghanistan and Iraq. As for her “call[ing] Putin Hitler,” what she in fact said was that Putin’s actions in Ukraine — the purported protection of the ethnic Russian minority in the east of the country in order to justify the use of military force there — was similar to what Hitler had done in Poland and Czechoslovakia. She was right. That said, I’d have advised her to the effect that, right as she may in terms of history, Hitler comparisons aren’t especially helpful in modern political rhetoric; nuances get lost or are overlooked.

          • Nop
            August 15, 2018 at 10:03 pm

            James, there is no evidence whatsoever of Russia using military force in the Donbass.

        • August 14, 2018 at 10:43 pm

          GKJ, well, for one thing, war with regime change was advocated in Hillary’s infamous emails that were leaked….

          • August 14, 2018 at 10:44 pm

            P.S. …in Russia, I should have included…….RR

      • August 14, 2018 at 8:26 pm

        “What about Clinton?” is an example of Whataboutism, which is a classic Russian propaganda technique used to divert attention away from the relevant subject, statement, argument, etc at hand with an accusation of hypocrisy.

        It takes the form, “What about _______?”

        Whataboutism is a type of psychological projection. It uses blame shifting to attribute wrong doing or some character defect to someone else with a goal of sabotaging the conversation by steering the speaker to become defensive.

        On the playground, the kids call it “I know you are, but what am I?”

        I have no idea whether any of this Russiagate stuff is real. We have seen no evidence, so I remain skeptical until someone shows actual evidence of Trump-Putin collusion.

        However, I do know where Donald Trump got a bunch of his money, and where he and his followers got Whataboutism.

        A Guide to Russian Propaganda

        • Gregory Herr
          August 14, 2018 at 8:43 pm

          Shouldn’t that be “A Guide to Ukrainian Propaganda”?

        • Gregory Herr
          August 14, 2018 at 9:20 pm

          It seems to me that jean agreed with your characterisation of Trump and in no way was trying to sabotage the conversation. jean referenced some facts about characters relevant to the broader topic.

          I would contend that every time I’ve heard the cry of “well, that’s just whataboutism”, the purpose of that claim has been to avoid addressing the points made–thus sabotaging further engagement or conversation.

          So now, after all this time, you still “have no idea” whether Russiagate nonsense is real–what a fine fence-straddler you are. And then to suggest that “whataboutism” is made in Russia and slyly connect that to “Trump and his followers”—well, you just lost me brother.

        • dana
          August 14, 2018 at 9:44 pm

          Whatabouttery exposes hypocrites. That is reason enough to engage in it.

        • August 14, 2018 at 10:05 pm

          lol

          It’s not what aboutism it’s called having consistency and principles

          It’s like Jack the Ripper calling Ted Kennedy a murderer

          It matters if both sides are doing deals with Russia and only one has proved collusion with Russia government officials

          That would be Hillary

          I understand why you would want to deflect from that but it won’t change the facts

          Your new Mcarthyism isn’t working but nice try since it’s all you have to offer

        • zendeviant
          August 15, 2018 at 5:30 am

          Whataboutism is a call out for hypocrisy. It wasn’t invented by the russians. It was in use by a carpenter over two-thousand years ago: “Why do you call out for a dust mote in my eye when there is a log in yours?”

          Nothing new under the sun.

        • michael
          August 15, 2018 at 5:33 am

          Kind of like What about Russian interference in our Elections? Whatabout that, as a clear and dangerous deflection from Hillary taking blame for her incompetent and corrupt 2016 campaigns?

          • jeff montanye
            August 17, 2018 at 6:38 am

            and her incompetent and corrupt tenure as secretary of state which gave so many people a really good idea of what her presidency would look like.

        • Nop
          August 15, 2018 at 10:06 pm

          The accusation “whataboutism” just a childish way of trying to deny the point of view of rival interests. Like plugging your ears and chanting “la la la”.

      • August 15, 2018 at 7:10 am

        When I hear people talk about how vulnerable Trump is because of his allegedly dirty business deals, I wonder: if that’s true, then why wasn’t he charged long ago, since he’s been active as a businessman for many years.
        My hunch is that seriously investigating these deals, if they do exist, would expose too many powerful people to scrutiny they don’t want, so Trump gets a pass.
        And yes, I agree, there is no public evidence of collusion, not surprising since it isn’t a federal crime to begin with, except, potentially, in an anti-trust context that doesn’t apply here.

        • Dave P.
          August 15, 2018 at 2:56 pm

          John Kirsch – Good comments. I agree.

          I doubt it very much, Trump has any dirty deals in those Russian money laundering as some commentators write about, the money the corrupt Russian Oligarchs, mostly Jewish, who brought to London and other West’s Financial Centers during the plundering of Russia in 1992 – 2004 period. And as you pointed out, if there is any, seriously investigating these deals will expose many powerful people, and the corruption and rot of London Financial Center along with many other West’s Financial Centers.

          All the Oligarchs engage in some sort of corruption, Mitt Romney was no different with all his money stashed away in off shore financial safe heavens. Trump is singled out because he ran against that Swamp which he called it during his election campaign, and in their view, he is damaging the World Uni-polar System with U.S. as the Master and EU as vassal States.

          • John
            August 18, 2018 at 11:52 pm

            Trump is in a business popular with money-launderers and he associates with people who’ve had money laundered. Additionally, all the business dealings in the past 10 years have been opaque.
            – Trump’s businesses were loosing money until about 10 years ago, then suddenly he started doing all-cash dears (no loans).
            – No one knows where all that money for those all-cash deals came from, but the lack of loans is a good indicator that he really doesn’t want to explain where the money came from (loans for the recent investments would have make enormous sense financially, but would have required disclosing his other financing sources to the lenders.)
            – What few loans Trump companies have taken out (refinancing, etc) were from private investment wings of Deutsche Bank, which has been repeated busted for laundering Russian money.

            Trump is neck deep in Russian money laundering by association alone, and acting suspiciously. The balance of probability is that he IS dirty with Russian money. Presuming he is innocent anywhere but a court of law is not rational.

    • Gregory Herr
      August 14, 2018 at 8:57 pm

      Simple question: What behavior of Trump, precisely, are you referring to?

      • August 14, 2018 at 9:34 pm

        Since global warming kicked in, I keep the thermostat on 75° because the power bill gets astronomical if I set it any colder.

        So I am referring to Trump’s behavior being that of someone whose IQ is less than 75°F. Celsius would be something like 25° and not even Donald Trump is 25 stupid. That’s human salad bar level there. Maybe a cucumber and a couple croutons.

        • Gregory Herr
          August 14, 2018 at 10:02 pm

          Funny stuff–but you referred to Trump’s behavior in light of “Russian laundering”. I thought you had something specific in mind like quid pro quos.

          I don’t put stock in IQ scores, but my best guess is that it is far more likely that Trump scored a standard deviation above the mean than it is that he scored more than a standard deviation below the mean. I do think he demonstrates some shallowness and a lack of what I might call “higher” sensibilities, but I hardly think he is a flat out moron.

          • August 14, 2018 at 10:48 pm

            Gregory, well, a college professor of Trump said he was the dumbest student he ever had.

          • Archie Kohmover
            August 15, 2018 at 1:24 am

            I’m thinking that if there are any IQ scores for Trump anywhere, they are probably closer to the mean than to an SD above. (Note that I don’t put a lot of stock in IQ scores either, but I don’t think Trump is very bright.)

            Whatever his IQ score, I will note that Trump is incapable of doing simple arithmetic in his head, as evidenced by the famous Howard Stern clip in which none of the Trumps is able to multiply 17 x 6:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMIKzUAY8n4

            I leave it to you to think about what that means. Clearly, his IQ is not “one of the highest,” as he liked to claim it was during his campaign.

          • Gregory Herr
            August 15, 2018 at 2:41 am

            I didn’t mean to suggest that Trump has a high IQ or is particularly bright. A score of 75, well under more than one standard deviation under the mean, is so implausible to me that I stated it would be far more likely that he reached something like 115 (which isn’t at all exceptional for culturally privileged children). “Shallow and lacking sensibilities” is average these days.

          • August 15, 2018 at 12:27 pm

            Trump says he discovered the power of being shallow: “Whenever I am making a creative choice, I think back and remember my first shallow reaction. The day I realized it can be smart to be shallow, was for me, a deep experience.

            I have no personal business dealings with Trump nor have I ever met the guy. Just reading information as everyone else does. No special knowledge of specific anything.

            The allegation floating around is one very common to real estate. Laundering money.

            Trump’s business model is his “brand,” which basically means Trump lends his names to building projects rather than actually owning said buildings himself. Sounds similar to franchising.

            Not surprisingly, Trump has been involved in such shady scandals in the past. As someone else stated, “My hunch is that seriously investigating these deals, if they do exist, would expose too many powerful people to scrutiny they don’t want, so Trump gets a pass.”

            Whether or not Trump gets convicted of these sorts of crimes depends on a cost/ benefit analysis the powers that be will have to make. Is nailing Trump worth enough to them to draw unwanted attention to how these money laundering/ not paying taxes/ globalism foreign investment/ corrupt crony capitalist scams work?

            Trump Taj Mahal Settles Lawsuit Over Money Laundering Violations
            Casino Pays $10 Million Unsecured Claim To Treasury Department

        • August 14, 2018 at 10:11 pm

          Trump is more popular than Hillary and you still defend her.

          Hillary is now the most epic embarrassment and failure in the history of the country and Democratic Party.

          Hillary is the only human being in history who could cheat and still lose to her own pied piper baboon.

          Hillary even picked Trump.

          HILLARY CLINTON WILL CAMPAIGN FOR DEMOCRATS IN 2018 DESPITE BEING EVEN LESS POPULAR THAN TRUMP

          https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.newsweek.com/hillary-clinton-will-campaign-democrats-2018-despite-being-even-less-popular-803380%3famp=1

          Genius!!!

          Trump’s fault ?

          And Trump is stupid?

          That’s rich.

          • August 15, 2018 at 10:29 am

            Not sure why anyone expects me to defend Hillary Clinton.

            I am not a Hillary Clinton supporter. I am not an apologist for Bill or Hillary Clinton.

            Well… maybe that was disingenuous.

            I have a pretty good idea why someone would expect me to defend Hillary Clinton.

            It’s the programmed response I am supposed to give for the Whataboutism technique to work.

            Did we mention Hillary? She’s still the villain in the soap opera…

            The HILLAAARRRYYY!!! Clinton character on Fox News is a product of decades of story development. The emotional content of the narrative matters much more than does its factual content. For example, neither Clinton holds a political office nor is running for office.

            She’s even got her own WWF Wrassling character now.She’s the Liberal! 

            Trump is the Face and Hillary is the Heel on the show Donald Trump Learned His Political Moves from Wrassling 101:

            The story writes itself and guarantees ratings Creating a World Stupid Enough for Donald Trump to Take it Over:

    • August 15, 2018 at 12:36 am

      Ummm… are you guys saying we need to demonstrate Donald Trump is stupid?

      Are you guys pulling my leg? Next you’ll be wanting to us to prove Barack Obama is black.

      Donald Trump does not speak in complete sentences. He demonstrates the verbal behavior of a semi-literate dotard capuchin monkey. Here are the speech guys trying to figure out why Trump don’t talk right.

      The guy who discovered the Dunning-Kruger effect, David Dunning, wrote this article clearly stating Donald Trump and his followers epitomize the Dunning-Kruger effect: “This syndrome may well be the key to the Trump voter—and perhaps even to the man himself. Trump has served up numerous illustrative examples of the effect.”

      There have been more people trying to figure out what the hell is wrong with Donald Trump over the last couple years than have watched black millionaires kneeling in the Super Bowls. Playing “WTF is wrong with Donald?” is the new national pastime.

      Surely this is common knowledge. Are you guys trolling me?

      • Archie
        August 15, 2018 at 1:32 am

        Yeah, I second that.

      • backwardsevolution
        August 15, 2018 at 4:27 am

        O Society – oh, brother. What an absolutely useless article by David Dunning. If the author wants to talk about those who don’t know what they think they know, he ought to start with himself. He mentions the unemployment rate as if it’s for real. He obviously doesn’t realize it’s manipulated and if they don’t get the answer they want, they just change the parameters. Same with the rate of inflation, same with the GDP. He thinks the bond market is actually controlled by the bond holders. Hello?

        “…if we find ourselves worried about the apparent gullibility of the Trump voter” says it all. How about the absolute cluelessness of the voters who actually believe in Russiagate, although there is not a shred of evidence? Trump is obviously bright enough to know that’s a load of crap.

        Those “stupid” Trump voters were smart enough to realize that globalization hasn’t been good for them (as they were told it would be), that all of the jobs were offshored, that the tax money that should be going towards rebuilding the country’s infrastructure is instead going towards the war machine, padding the coffers of arms dealers and weapons manufacturers. Their ideas might be simple to you, but for them they boiled down to putting food on the table and a roof over their heads. I could go on and on, but I’m not going to waste my time.

        Reading articles like this is like nails on a blackboard, excruciating.

        • michael
          August 15, 2018 at 5:43 am

          Critical thinking skills are more important than IQ (what’s the point of having a brain if you cannot use it?) And nobody who fervently believes Russiagate, a religion-like Fideism reflex, is using critical thinking skills, with any research on “the evidence”.
          Agreed there is a lot to criticize Trump (mostly the same stuff– like murder of Arabs– that should be applied to Bush/Cheney and Obama/Hillary as well). But Russiagate? As Chomsky says, the rest of the world is laughing at us.

      • August 15, 2018 at 4:52 pm

        Trump is stupid

        Trump is a symptom

        Clinton’s the disease

        Trump is a stiff middle finger to the bush republicans and Gop free trade deals

        And Hillary

  23. Pablo Diablo
    August 14, 2018 at 5:23 pm

    “If you tell a lie often enough, it becomes the truth”. — Leo Strauss.
    “Hacked emails”, “Stolen emails” = a diversion from WHAT is in the emails. Assange says they were “leaked”.

    • August 14, 2018 at 10:51 pm

      Pablo, yes, what was in the emails should be discussed every time they are mentioned. Assange did say they were leaked, many times. Why do you think he has been put in isolation with no contact with the outside world? Can’t let the simple truth get out there.

  24. GM
    August 14, 2018 at 4:48 pm

    The people behind advancing the Russiagate fraud are not concerned about the widening chaos it has engendered. On the contrary, it is playing out exactly as they hoped.
    Fast growing censorship of dissent, isolation of a major geopolitical competitor, providing an explanation for the rise of Trump and the precipitous decline in public faith in establishment institutions.
    Hell, it’s even being leveraged to explain away racism. Win win win win
    I’d say they are right where they want to be at this juncture.

    • Dave P.
      August 14, 2018 at 6:21 pm

      GM – Excellent observations. Very true.

      I would add that they – the Ruling Establishment – are accomplished in the art of manipulating the public into believing whatever they want them to believe in. In fact, they have world wide reach.

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 6:51 am

        oh come on. the world wide reach of the ruling establishment has been taking it up the behind ever since most everyone in the advanced world and many elsewhere got a computer broadly defined and plugged into the internet. look at the revenues of the new york times in the last fifteen years for starters. myspace looked powerful in its day. facebook faces and will face similar competitors in the gales of creative destruction. all the news that’s fit to print has been replaced by all the news that someone, nearly anyone, wants to call news.

  25. Keith
    August 14, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    According to Bill Binney in an interview with Jimmy Dore (https://youtu.be/JHZXVWUxxDU), Guccifer 2.0 released two batches of data, one on 5 July 2016 and a second on 1 Sept 2016. “But if you look at that data a little closer,” Binney said, “and you ignore the hour and the day, and just look at minutes, seconds, and milliseconds, [you can take those] two data sets and shuffle them like a deck of cards. They fit together into one dataset without conflict.” So there was one continuous set of data. In other words, G-2.0 got hold of one dataset, but wanted it to appear as two different hacks. Binney doesn’t deviate from the claim that the speed of the download means it was done “locally”–not over the internet–but that we don’t know where “local” was (it wasn’t necessarily done at the DNC). As for the possibility that the dataset was hacked over the internet, then moved locally at the much faster speed, I’d guess that the VIPS would have identified that possibility. If G-2.0 were so unsophisticated as to change dates and hours, but ignore minutes, seconds, and milliseconds, G-2.0 might have overlooked any evidence that the dataset had also been moved previously over a slower internet transfer–and VIPS is sharp enough to have picked that up. If such evidence could easily be removed, surely VIPS would have pointed out that possibility.

    • JWalters
      August 14, 2018 at 9:02 pm

      The main defense against the VIPS download speed analysis is the claim that the files might have been stolen from the DNC server over the internet at the slower speed, and then copied to a thumb drive at the faster speed. I’d like to hear how VIPS would dispute that theory.

      In any case, there is a great deal of additional evidence that the theft was an inside job, including Julian Assange and Craig Murry saying the emails came to Wikileaks from a disgruntled insider, and even Leon Podesta speculating that it was insider.

    • August 14, 2018 at 10:56 pm

      The were leaked. JULIAN ASSANGE HAS SAID SO MANY TIMES. Why do you think he is now isolated from the world? Now I hear he’s considering taking an offer to testify and I’m worried about his mental state. Maybe someone in isolation who goes “stir crazy” would be willing to do anything to get out of it. No, that can’t be right. He’s never caved before.

      • JWalters
        August 15, 2018 at 7:36 pm

        Julian Assange is a hero and a historical figure.

        • jeff montanye
          August 17, 2018 at 6:57 am

          if anyone in the world deserves a presidential pardon it’s julian assange. certainly from a venal point of view, he, more than anyone besides trump and maybe hillary or seth rich, made trump president.

    • michael
      August 15, 2018 at 5:55 am

      As Federal judge William Zloch told Bernie supporters when they sued the Hillary DNC for stealing the primaries and their donations, the DNC is NOT a government entity. The DNC is NOT a public institution. The DNC IS a private club which by some arcane corrupt rule befitting a Banana Republic allows it to put forth one of essentially only two candidates for President. If there was any crime committed in this “matter” the FBI would have been all over those servers and computers like white on rice. You cannot have it both ways. As it is, there is no chain of custody for any possible evidence, and as Hillary has said many times, No Evidence Means No Crime.

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 7:03 am

        what? if there was any crime committed? were the dnc protecting the russian hackers? if it was as the dnc said they would want the fbi to validate their suspicions rather than depending on their payee, crowdstrike. that’s the tell that they knew the russians hadn’t done it and feared some fbi nerd who hadn’t gotten the word that s/he worked for a corrupt organization screwing the pooch for the dnc.

  26. August 14, 2018 at 4:37 pm

    It is quite interesting how many uninformed posters and/or trolls would love to find a way to show the “Russiagate” nonsense is somehow plausible in spite of the evidence. They’re kind of like a five year old child who desperately wants to keep believing in Santa Claus, even though he just found dad’s Santa costume in the closet and he’s holding it in his own hands.

    I will say that the amount of mental gymnastics required to continue not believing evidence that is right in front of one’s eyes is quite impressive – but I’d never underestimate the American people’s creativity when they want to maintain their illusions/delusions. And I’d certainly never underestimate the Russiagate troll army’s persistence.

    At this rate I expect to soon encounter some version of the following “observation” in the comments section for this article: – “maybe space aliens hired by the Russians downloaded the files to a to a new fangled thig-a-ma-jig and then shape-shifted so Craig Murray would be fooled into thinking a real-like-human insider provided him the files on a flash drive.” – “oh, oh, wait, maybe the aliens abducted Murray too, and then just made him “think” a fellow human gave him the drive in person.” “yeah, yeah, and maybe Assange just says he didn’t get the files from the Russians because “he’s a space alien too.” “Yeah, prove to me that it didn’t happen this way – you can’t – ha! there! I win!”

    Sorry, but two years into this we should be way beyond this kind of – “I can’t believe Santa’s not real”- denying, dissembling, rationalizing nonsense. Then again, this is America.

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 4:51 pm

      America is after all a country in which half the population believe in the creation myth.

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 7:11 am

        but if i had to bet, the creationists are less likely to believe in russiagate than the evolutionists.

        • backwardsevolution
          August 19, 2018 at 11:28 pm

          jeff – well put. I agree.

    • August 14, 2018 at 6:14 pm

      Please don’t give Rachel Maddow any more ideas.

    • michael
      August 15, 2018 at 6:06 am

      “Two years after the Iraq War began, 70 per cent of Americans still believed Saddam Hussein was personally involved in the 9/11 attacks, according to a Washington Post survey.” The Big Lie works, and since Obama gutted Smith-Mundt, the CIA/ State Department can legally keep Americans tracking on their propaganda narratives.

  27. ToivoS
    August 14, 2018 at 4:26 pm

    I agree with Lawrences point that this is an issue of social psychology. Rational argument over the facts is simply over taken by some kind of mass hysteria. There certainly precedent for this kind of behavior. Indeed this was described in ‘Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds’ 180 years ago. In my lifetime I have witnessed two episodes of this kind of mass hysteria. The first was the red scare of the early 1950’s (I not so much witnessed that as experienced it) and the second was the day care hysteria of satanic cults abusing our children that flared between the late 1980s and early 1990s. Now this is a third manifestation of mas hysteria.

    It all began with Hillary’s shocking defeat. Many millions of her supporters knew that she was so good that she had to win. But then she lost. Those millions of Democrats could not accept that in fact their assessment of her talents were totally wrong and that she lost because she has to be one of the worst candidates in American history. That is a reality those people refused to accept. Instead they had to concoct some crazy conspiracy to explain their break with reality. This is a classic case of cognitive dissonance which often leads to mass hysteria.

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 5:01 pm

      People choose to believe what they feel that they most need to believe to assuage their insecurities fostered by what they perceive to be the dangerous and scary world in which they exist. The simple fact that we know that life is finite by the time we’re three years old fosters the creation of such constructs as that of the myth of everlasting life in the kingdom of heaven complete with a mortgage-free condo and an extra parking space for all repentant sinners are mainstream beliefs.

    • August 14, 2018 at 11:07 pm

      ToivoS, you are right about Hillary. She simply couldn’t accept her defeat. She was the one who began Russiagate by the lie, “17 intelligence agencies” said the Russians hacked the emails.
      As for times of mass-swallowing of a lie…in the 1930s every German thought that Poland was about to invade Germany and they were scared so much that they believed their leaders who “false flagged” them into invading Poland “first.” Of course, Poland had no intention of invading Germany.
      Notice every time the US attacks another sovereign country, there’s a false flag waved for the citizens to follow?
      Don’t you appreciate that we have consortiumnews?

    • David G
      August 15, 2018 at 8:11 am

      ToivoS, I really appreciate your mentioning the 1980s-90s day-care abuse panic (a true, literal witch hunt).

      In my life that has been a formative introduction to the fact that just because all the pillars of the U.S.’s supposedly modern, enlightened society act like something is real does not mean that it is. The most fantastic, implausible nonsense can be treated as real and the entire establishment will go along with it, regardless of the human cost, including vaunted professions such as law, medicine, psychology, and journalism.

      It continues to be a depressingly useful lesson in interpreting the news.

    • jeff montanye
      August 17, 2018 at 7:15 am

      well the attacks of ’01 (likud/mossad/cia false flag) got at least four good sized wars started with u.s. troops killing about two million people in their home countries which never attacked the u.s. so that ought to count for something.

  28. Babyl-on
    August 14, 2018 at 4:03 pm

    Whatever Russiagate is all about, it is not about impeaching Trump. Isakoff and others have books out with slam dunk cases all laid out so Muller hardly needs to make much effort just provide the underlying documentation to the court.

    Yet, notice how weak and scattered actual calls for impeachment are, notice as well, the absence of any effort to get votes to support, at least, the introduction of Articles of Impeachment. There is no “impeachment coccus” in the House, Rachael isn’t counting the votes on the way to 67 in the Senate and Mike Pence as president. The so called “liberal” officials such as Sanders are absolutely pathetic the “i” word is forbidden.

    As time goes on with no real impeachment process going or an effort to get one going I believe more and more that this is about discrediting the election process and the civilian (non military/security) government.

    The fact is, the Andromeda Galaxy is closer to 67 votes than Russiagate is. Something smells to me.

    • mike k
      August 14, 2018 at 4:30 pm

      Very good observation and question Babyl-on. I think the Deep State actors wish to control Trump, and use impeachment as one of their threats to do that. Assassination is another threat they are using to control him. He actually is rewarding them with all kinds of goodies they desire, so why would they want to get rid of him? They just want to make sure he is under sufficient control to insure he doesn’t upset any of their major projects, like demonizing Russia. He is a dream come true for them, as long as he is under their ultimate control.

      • Babyl-on
        August 14, 2018 at 7:39 pm

        You know, I just realized something else. Rachael Maddow, CNN, the NYT, WaPo never use the “impeach” word. They say treason, they say sedition, they say collusion, but they never say… hay. these are impeachable offenses and we need to demand impeachment, we must be rid of this treasonous president. It seems insignificant but I think your on the right track, keep up the Russia bashing, control Trump and use him where possible, tax cuts for example, and keep that trillion dollar arms pay day rolling. It is working except the reality is they are the minority not the rest of us. They own the corporate media and they have a lot of celebrity names but outside the corporate media following no body believes them – they are pathetic. The make believe they are still the majority and the center but they are not.

        • jeff montanye
          August 17, 2018 at 7:28 am

          if they (the deep state, etc.) want to discredit the non military security fraction of the government they aren’t doing a very good job. a half dozen wars started and lost, nearing five trillion dollars burnt, two million, admittedly darkish, non judeo christians in the strict sense, dead, the fbi and cia leadership discredited and some probably on their way to trial, with at least the base of the “conservative” party calling for their blood seems an odd way to start.

    • August 14, 2018 at 5:57 pm

      Mueller is a criminal Bush toady who helped Bush lie the country into war and protected the criminals in the CIA and NSA after they were caught illegally spying and torturing….

      Mueller is the Republican bag man who helped cover up the BCCI scandel and 9/11……

      Brennen and Clapper and Haden are war criminals and worse and not only were never prosecuted for their crimes the now have jobs at CNN and MSNBC….

      Even the USSR wasnt so blatent……

      Hillary picked Trump……and the corporate media pushed him 24/7 and gave him 6 billion in free airtime…….Trump was the only candidate Hillary polled above.She knew she would even lose to Ted Cruz ,the creepiest munster.It had to be Trump.Hillary had the FBI and the neo con CIA working behind the scene to get the Stelle dossier and get Carter Page in the mix…….Trump win was a shock……even Trump never expected to win ,its why Melania cried when she found out.

      The neo -conservative “permanent ” deep state thought they had Hillary in that bag and it was a sure thing but oops…….Trump won.Now they are conspiring and pushing for a military coup against Trump and using every tool in the box .Trump has no freinds……both republicans and democrats hate him…..{he ran against the Bush cabal and called Bush the “worst president ever”}

      They now want to overturn the election and keep Trump in line as they do…..Trump wanted peace with Russia ,the neo-cons and Hillary wanted war……

      What we are witnessing is a coup and the destruction of the republic with it….The FBI ,dept of Justice ,Obama ,CIA ,NSA are all implicated and they know it and are desperate.The mask is falling off and these sociopaths are willing to risk WW3 with a nuclear power to put it back.

      • Gregory Herr
        August 14, 2018 at 10:11 pm

        excellent overview

        • August 14, 2018 at 10:37 pm

          I think trump’s a disgusting baboon but I think he was less dangerous than Hillary

          I don’t think a lower bar is even possible

          I hope not

          • Gregory Herr
            August 14, 2018 at 11:16 pm

            For all the damage that Trump may yet do, yes, the explicit danger and certain damage of Clinton’s warmongering ways was an overriding concern. The Syrian situation has improved, and for that, at least, I am grateful.

      • AnthraxSleuth
        August 15, 2018 at 12:52 am

        This comment is spot on except for one thing.
        ” these sociopaths are willing to risk WW3 with a nuclear power”

        No, they are not willing to risk nuclear war.
        THEY WANT NUCLEAR WAR!
        That is their final solution.

        • August 15, 2018 at 5:03 pm

          I suspect that you might be right

          21 trillion missing from the pentagon budget

          Might build a nice underground bunker

        • jeff montanye
          August 17, 2018 at 7:37 am

          i’d add maybe one more thing: it isn’t quite true that trump has no friends, no matter the spelling. a growing fraction of the electorate (weak except at elections, true) seems to approve of him.

          • August 17, 2018 at 4:26 pm

            I think many may deliberately over playing their hand to the point of parody and bring it to a crisis point…..they want the criminals brought to justice too.

            News Media Is Afraid Of CIA Says NSA Whistleblower Bil Binney …

            Video for bill binney jimmy dore
            ? 5:37
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aS3WR9Qlgvg
            2 days ago – Uploaded by The Jimmy Dore Show
            VIPS Professional Bill Binney discusses the connections between the Intelligence Agencies and the Corporate …

  29. Paul N
    August 14, 2018 at 2:36 pm

    I don’t believe the Russians did this. I think there are perhaps millions of people in the US capable of carrying out this action and many more with motive. Furthermore, if they did, I am happy that the information was made available so I can’t see why I would care.

    That said, I am unconvinced by this evidence. I am quite familiar with file systems on different operating systems and I would at least need to know what device we are talking about here. Did it come from Assange? Why doesn’t somebody say so? What sort of device is it? The simple fact that it was copied from a computer doesn’t prove that the computer was the DNC server. It might have been copied from Putin’s iMac. I believe in one reading the writer acknowledged that the dates on the drive could be manipulated and I am certain that this is true. While this may still leave it above the level of evidence that the FBI or “intelligence” agencies have presented (or even claimed to have) it is not conclusive.

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 5:10 pm

      What is definitely conclusive is the Gucci 2 entity forged the inclusion of Russian fingerprints in the leaked version of the documents by pasting it into a Russian language Word template. With 70 years of experience in espionage, there is no way Russian spy agencies are that sloppy and moreover, and if they were it would be absolutely unprecedented.
      Furthermore, I have no reason to disbelieve Craig Murray that the docs were handed to him directly and transferred by him to Wikileaks. Quite the contrary, in fact, since his reputation would undoubtably be irreconcilably demolished for all time if the Russiagaters ever came up with hard proof to support their conspiracy theory.

      • GM
        August 14, 2018 at 5:12 pm

        Please forgive all the typos, posted on my little bitty phone :)

  30. j. D. D.
    August 14, 2018 at 2:21 pm

    The crucial premise of the ongoing British-instigated coup against President Trump and the chief legal ground for Robert Mueller’s operation against the President, is the claim that the Russians hacked the emails of the DNC and, John Podesta, and provided the results to WikiLeaks which published them. The authenticity of such emails showing Hillary Clinton to be a craven puppet of Wall Street who had cheated Bernie Sanders of the nomination were never disputed, by Clinton, or anyone else. Nor has the central conclusion of William Binnery’s forensic analysis: that Gucifer 2.0 was a fabrication, and that the DNC emails were downloaded, not hacked by Russia. Furthermore, the only people who really know where and by whom the download occurred are Julian Assange, whose life is now in peril, and former British Ambassador Craig Murray. Were Assange be allowed to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee later this month, the lid could be blown off the entire sordid operation.

    • paul g.
      August 14, 2018 at 3:03 pm

      Craig stated he was merely a go between, who was given the data in the woods by American University by probably another go between. Lots of cut outs here but the data was transferred physically by thumb drive(s).

    • David G
      August 15, 2018 at 8:27 am

      “The crucial premise … is the claim that the Russians hacked the emails of the DNC and, John Podesta, and provided the results to WikiLeaks which published them.”

      Don’t forget about the Facebook puppy videos. https://consortiumnews.com/2017/10/04/the-mystery-of-the-russia-gate-puppies/

    • John
      August 19, 2018 at 12:12 am

      I have to call out “…emails showing Hillary Clinton to be a craven puppet of Wall Street who had cheated Bernie Sanders of the nomination were never disputed…”
      – None of the leaked emails show any action taken by the DNC against Sanders to “cheat” him of the nomination. All there was was some grumbling and attitudes.

      “Cheated” is a summary word of other actions, not an action itself. No other actions, no cheating.

  31. Bob In Portland
    August 14, 2018 at 1:25 pm

    I would like to call attention to a little slice of history of US the destabilization of Eastern Europe and the USSR that would help to explain what is happening today.

    From before the CIA’s formation the US intelligence activities have been the province of the Republican Party (there are plenty of exceptions, but please follow). Allen Dulles and his ilk were friends with and shared goals with German industrialists long before World War II. These relationships continued through WWII and afterwards. The CIA has functioned as an international coal and iron police, overthrowing governments around the world that have stood in the way of corporate profits.

    Russ Bellant’s book, Old Nazis, the New Right, and the Republican Party, points to the political relationship between the Republican Party and fascists around the world. You can read a short article by Bellant here: https://archive.org/details/CovertActionInformationBulletinNo35TheCIAInEasternEurope

    This edition of Covert Action Information Bulletin, in 1990, happened just before a shift in Washington. Almost all of the operations run by our government to destabilize Eastern Europe and the USSR in 1990 were organized by the political right and run by people such as Paul Weyrich. But the nineties showed a rise in Democratic activity in these settings. I would guess that a mental image of this would be our then-First Lady lying about dodging bullets on an airstrip during the destruction of Yugoslavia. It marked the successful CIA takeover of the Democratic Party.

    The 2016 Russiagate hysteria has been an intelligence operation which has been by all measures successful. I presumed initially that the scam was done to put Hillary into the White House, but now wonder if having Trump as President was part of the long-term strategy.

    Please note that the DNC backed over fifty new candidates for Congress who have intelligence backgrounds. How do you think they will vote for the coming war resolution against Russia?

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 5:16 pm

      Not sure about the theory of installing Trump in the WH is part of a long term strategy of the deep state, but the latter seems to be adapting to the disruption quite well.

    • August 14, 2018 at 8:52 pm

      Additional info: Stephen Kinzer’s “The Brothers” which documents the Dulles brother’s creation of the Cold War mentality and activities.
      Shouldn’t we add Carter and Zbigniew Brzezinski.

    • michael
      August 15, 2018 at 6:33 am

      Citing a book from almost 30 years ago that implicated ONLY the Republicans in the CIAs machinations ignores LBJ and the CIA’s involvement in Vietnam and possibly in the JFK assassination. Later, Carter was the only Democrat President who may or may not have been heavily involved with the CIA. The Clintons were likely involved with the CIA early on in their Mena, Arkansas drug-smuggling schemes, and the CIA was definitely closely involved in their presidential anti-Slavic foreign policy. The Clintons’ neoliberal agenda fit well with the older neocons and consolidated the Duopoly support for the crazed think tank ideas in DC.

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 7:45 am

        all perhaps true, but the cia, etc. have terribly neglected their republican base (ftr: registered democrat, sanders and trump voter) and it is baying at their heels, drool swinging from gnashing fangs. that is a political change as profound and radical as anything i observed around the tear gas and batons of the sixties.

  32. August 14, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    “They have passed the point of no return; there is no walking it back now. If it fails heads will roll, but most importantly these trusted institutions will have flushed their last vestiges of credibility down the drain. Then what?”

    Then nothing. It puts one mind of the comment made by one of the Robber Barons when they were caught with their hands in the cookie jar. His comment ” All that was lost was honour” In the present mess even if eventually it all comes to light no one is going to be held answerable. No one is going to jail. Truth does not matter. The propaganda is what matters. if it is proven wrong it is merely swept under the rug. With the short attention spans of Americans it would be forgotten in a New York Minute.

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 5:19 pm

      Perhaps this explains the need for the likely false flag poison attack in Britain and the fake Douma nerve gas attack. Russiagate hasn’t really been panning out so well and too much info has been emerging to challenge the narrative.

    • David G
      August 15, 2018 at 8:29 am

      I fully agree.

  33. Peter de Klerk
    August 14, 2018 at 1:06 pm

    If Russian hacking is a hoax, why has it not been exposed by all the Trump appointed intelligence and FBI heads? Trump’s people could shut it down with a public single statement. Y’all are deep into a conspiracy theory that makes no sense.

    • AnthraxSleuth
      August 14, 2018 at 1:27 pm

      Pffft!
      It was shown to be a hoax by Clinton’s own campaign staff in their book released after the election titled “shattered”.

      ~snip
      “Within 24 hours of her concession speech, [campaign chair John Podesta and manager Robby Mook] assembled her communications team at the Brooklyn headquarters to engineer the case that the election wasn’t entirely on the up-and-up. For a couple of hours, with Shake Shack containers littering the room, they went over the script they would pitch to the press and the public. Already, Russian hacking was the centerpiece of the argument.”

      The plan, according to the book, was to push journalists to cover how “Russian hacking was the major unreported story of the campaign,” and it succeeded to a fare-thee-well. After the election, coverage of the Russian “collusion” story was relentless, and it helped pressure investigations and hearings on Capitol Hill and even the naming of a special counsel, which in turn has triggered virtually nonstop coverage.

      ~snip

      https://nypost.com/2017/10/26/how-team-hillary-played-the-press-for-fools-on-russia/

      Guess the only conspiracy theororist here is you.
      Goebbels would be so proud.
      You drank the kool-aid bruh!

      • Peter de Klerk
        August 14, 2018 at 2:19 pm

        My comment applies equally well to your response. Why doesn’t Nunes, Pompeo, or Coates, etc ever say anything about these theories?

        • AnthraxSleuth
          August 14, 2018 at 4:28 pm

          It’s no longer a theory when the conspirators confess to it in their own writing.
          Which I demostrated to you in the previous post.

          • Peter de Klerk
            August 14, 2018 at 6:18 pm

            This very slanted article amplifies a few post-election statements. I’m sure Podesta and Mook wanted to play this up. Some of that was sour grapes but most people are inclined to think it was also true. These guys controlling most media outlets and most of the intelligence community seems absurd to me. But I guess we all believe what we want to believe now.

          • AnthraxSleuth
            August 15, 2018 at 4:33 am

            “But I guess we all believe what we want to believe now.”

            You’re the poster boy for that.
            mmmm, mmmm tasty kool-aid.

            EOM

    • jdd
      August 14, 2018 at 2:30 pm

      One suspects that the President has revealed far less than he knows, perhaps wary of being accused of “obstruction” by Mueller in concert with the controlled media. He actually requested that William Binney present his analysis to then CIA Director Pompeo, who has since sat on it. But actually, to your point, the reverse is true.If the DNC and Podesta were hacked by Russians, the NSA would have been able to demonstrate that fact through evidentiary proof, a point made repeatedly by Binney. No such proof was or has ever been offered. Instead the main document presented to the American public was the January 6, 2017 “assessment” by analysts hand-picked by John Brennan, who has played a key role in the illegal operation against President Trump.

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 7:54 am

        and donald trump has more training in show business than most politicians or even internet commenters. i suspect there is a fall premiere of quite an extravaganza leading up to the midterm elections.

  34. August 14, 2018 at 1:03 pm

    Read half the most intelligent commentary and had to quick. I was struck by one comment particularly, why not ask Assange about the leak. Too simple but too much to ask, I guess. Keeping him incommunicado certainly serves the leaders of the lynch mob and thanks goes to the new Ecuadorian President. He was asked to shut the guy up and he did.

    • Modawg
      August 14, 2018 at 3:28 pm

      I think he has been asked and has politely refused to reveal. But his innuendo is that it was from inside the US and definitely not the Russkies.

    • alley cat
      August 14, 2018 at 4:44 pm

      Herman, Assange has been asked about the identity of the leaker and replied that he couldn’t comment because Wikileaks has a strict policy of maintaining sources’ confidentiality. No potential source would ever trust Assange if he violated that policy.

      Instead, Assange offered a $20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of Seth Richards’ murderer. So this was his way of answering the question indirectly.

      A Solomonic solution that is technically not a violation of confidentiality

      • TS
        August 15, 2018 at 7:17 am

        > Do you also dismiss the global pattern of Russian interference on democratic elections by the same means and methods?

        Yup! Since nobody has presented the slightest evidence of such a pattern (and even the German intelligence agencies have said it didn’t happen…)

        > Didn’t Putin say publicly that his country acted to assist Donald Trump?

        Nope!

        > Are the CEO’s of FACEBOOK and Google and Twitter also spouting lie about Russian media interference in our elections’s

        As far as I know, they have been avoiding doing so (presumably because they know such lies would be exposed immediately).

        > When the details come out about how Russia has funneled money throu the NRA, will you dismiss that as well?

        The NRA is funded by Moscow gold! I like it… that makes all its right-wing supporters in Congress agents of Moscow, right? Please launch a campaign to have them all impeached. (I won’t hold my breath waiting, though.)

        > Is Florida election systems not really under Russian military attack as I write this?

        Well, no, it is not. And why should the Russians want to, in the first place? The existing office-holders do more harm than anything they could possibly arrange…

      • jeff montanye
        August 17, 2018 at 7:56 am

        his name is seth rich. the dnc gave him a memorial bike rack.

  35. August 14, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    Do you also dismiss the global pattern of Russian interference on democratic elections by the same means and methods? Didn’t Putin say publicly that his country acted to assist Donald Trump? Are the CEO’s of FACEBOOK and Google and Twitter also spouting lie about Russian media interference in our elections’s. When the details come out about how Russia has funneled money throu the NRA, will you dismiss that as well? Is Florida election systems not really under Russian military attack as I write this?

    • Skip Scott
      August 14, 2018 at 3:27 pm

      Do you dismiss the global pattern of CIA interference in elections all around the world for decades, including Russia in 1996? Look at the amount and quality of this so-called interference by Russian citizens. It is miniscule. Facebook , google, and twitter know they have to play ball with our so-called “Intelligence Community” and Congress or else. Please provide a source for Putin saying publicly he helped Trump. I found nothing on a browser search.

      You are drinking MSM Kool-aid by the bucketload. Try reading through the archives here for an education.

      • Rob
        August 14, 2018 at 4:19 pm

        I believe that Putin said that he hoped for Trump to win, not that he ordered Russian operatives to interfere in the U.S. election process. There is a big difference. If I am wrong about this, I would love to see the evidence.

        • Curious
          August 15, 2018 at 1:40 am

          Rob, there’s is a lot of confusion about what Putin really said, and most of it is wrong.

          Again, the ‘lost in translation’ issues. Here is what was said by Putin, quoted in CGI and elsewhere:

          CGI quote: What Putin actually called Trump in Russian is “ochen’ yarkiy chelovek,” which literally translates to “a very bright person.” Unlike the English word “bright,” the Russian yarkiy does not connote intelligence; rather, it means someone who is colorful, flashy, showy, an individual who makes himself stand out from the crowd. The more colloquial translation is “a colorful character,” a phrase that in the Russian carries a note of bemusement. Putin added that Trump is also “talented (talantlivyi), without a doubt.” He then went on to say that “regarding [U.S.] internal politics and the turns of phrase [Trump] employs to boost his popularity, I repeat that it is not our business to assess that aspect of his performance.” Taken as a whole, the statement suggests that Putin recognizes the theatrical component of Trump’s campaign, and chose not to comment on the contentious impact that Trump and his statements have had on American politics.

          Putin himself later explained this to the journalists at one of his end of the year Q&As he has.

          Trump, naturally, heard a bad translation and this appealed to his self-aggrandizement. He gave the thumbs up thinking Putin was congratulating, and backing him. Unsurprisingly, people still misunderstand Putins’ statement.

          Translation issues often occur and I remember when Jimmy Carter went to Poland for his first trip abroad to Poland, and the translator said President Carter had a great “lust” for the people of Poland, whereas the word “lust”, as in German, means “desire, fondness and affection” and not some sexual connotation at all in a formal context.. The funny thing is people still believe Putin wanted Trump, believing a poor translation. Foreign languages really should be taught in schools again.

    • rosemerry
      August 14, 2018 at 4:21 pm

      Didn’t Putin say publicly that his country acted to assist Donald Trump? NO, he did not. The questioner joined several questions together. Putin agreed that he wanted a person to win who would try to mend relations with Russia. He said he did nothing to help the process.
      You really believe the billionaire CEOs of those controlling businesses???
      As for Florida- remember the 2000 election.

    • Paul P
      August 14, 2018 at 4:35 pm

      These are all quite easily addressed point by point. As the saying goes, that which can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.

      Where is this established pattern of interfering with the “same means and methods”? If the claim is essentially, “Russia obtained evidence of corruption in an unfavorable party and disseminated this evidence to swing a democratic foreign election against said party” please cite an example of another election where this can be proven as something that happened. It hasn’t.

      Did Putin publicly admit that Russia acted to help Donald Trump? The answer to that is no. You are likely misinterpreting or misrepresenting an interview in which Putin stated Trump’s more conciliatory campaign rhetoric (vs Clinton’s open hostility) seemed preferable. This is as far as the “admission” went and is miles from your assertion/interpretation.

      FB and Twitter’s definition of Russia-linked activity is purposefully misleading. For activity to be considered Russia-linked, only ONE (not all) of the following conditions must apply. 1. The account is set up from Russian IP. 2. The account is confirmed using number with a Russian phone carrier. 3. Any services purchased are paid for in Russian currency. 4. The user has ever logged in via a Russian network, even once. 5. The user posts primarily in Russian. 6. User has a screen name spelled in the Cyrillic alphabet.
      None of these things can even guarantee that a user is even Russian national, much less acting at the behest of the Russian government. If you used the wifi at Sheremtyevo during a layover between Amsterdam and Beijing and used Twitter, they’d call that Russia-linked activity.

      According to Bloomberg, “Russia funneling money through the NRA” amounts to a meager $2512 donated by 23 people with Russian addresses in 2015-2018 (laughably paltry for an organization with over $433,000,000 in annual revenue), the majority is in the form of membership dues and less than half in the form of individual donations. This is hardly indicative of some giant secret funding operation, especially as there is no proof the Russian government has anything to do with this. There are an estimated 300,000 American citizens at least temporarily residing in Russia, but it’s inconceivable that among them might be 23 NRA members/donors?

      As for Florida, to date there’s been no evidence presented. If there’s no evidence, then anyone believing this only does so because they want to.

    • keir
      August 14, 2018 at 4:39 pm

      I can only assume that:
      “Are the CEO’s of FACEBOOK Google and Twitter also spouting lie about Russian media intereference in our elections’s”
      -was meant to be ironic?
      If not, then what do you think these unregulated public forums and their selective censoring are really for?
      An exercise in freedom of speech?
      (clearly not all speech)
      They are literally designed to sway public opinion (at best) and circulate the lies that corporate media is spouting.

      Russian Meddling?
      Why this so funny to the majority of the rest of the world is because historically America not only meddles in elections, but illegally invades and overthrows democratically elected governments and installs dictatorships (think Iran, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Ukraine and the Honduras)
      The real irony is that in the 1996 Russian election under Clinton the US made sure it was their man Yeltsin that got elected.
      It is psychologically easy to attach to the hysteria of Russian fear mongering, because of the history of propaganda.
      “Fear Communism!”
      “They are infiltrating America through worker’s unions!!”
      Only now they are crony capitalists just like us.

    • Karelian
      August 14, 2018 at 5:02 pm

      Bream Lynch,

      No, he didn’t say that. And if some media claims so, then please avoid that media in the future, as it lies to you. He answered the first part of a two-piece question. He said that he hoped Trump to win, not that he ordered people to assist Trump.

      And there is no “global pattern” of Russian interference. You may remember how NSA said they watched the Russians hack Macron’s email? But do you remember how soon after that France said there were no “Russian hacking” of any sort. You might also remember how the media in Germany (and in US) told that Russia was ready to hack the German elections? Do you remember how after the elections German intelligence agency said that they didn’t find any Russian activities at all?

      The France case:
      https://apnews.com/fc570e4b400f4c7db3b0d739e9dc5d4d

      And how the “trusted” NSA claimed to “saw everything”:
      https://www.wired.com/2017/05/nsa-director-confirms-russia-hacked-french-election-infrastructure/

      The German case (you might want to use google translator):
      https://www.sueddeutsche.de/politik/geheimdienste-bnd-keine-beweise-fuer-desinformations-kampagne-putins-1.3365839

      P.S. Sorry about my English. This is not my native language :)

      • backwardsevolution
        August 15, 2018 at 5:12 am

        Karelian – excellent English. Good job.

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 5:23 pm

      “Didn’t Putin say publicly that his country acted to assist Donald Trump?“
      No, he did not, though media pundits pretended he did for a few days and then dropped it.

    • Gregory Herr
      August 14, 2018 at 6:32 pm

      When the details come out? That’s the problem–relentless accusations for 20 months with no evidence and little detail except absurd notions about the (non) effect of click-bait ads on social media that have nothing to do with Russian government activity. What is equally absurd is the idea that the Russian Federation gives a rat’s petunia about who wins a contest between Bill Nelson or Rick Scott, two all-too-similar politicians in the American mold. And of course the Russian government has an idea of how to purge just the right voters to achieve a preference! What nonsense!
      With all the “information” and “disinformation” coming from a myriad of quarters trying to sell one candidate over another during our protracted election seasons, people need to get a grip about terms such as “influence” and “interference” and perhaps arrive at the perspective that amidst all the chatter and influence-peddling lies the responsibility for individual voters to separate wheat from chaff and come to a personal voting decision. CNN and MSNBC backed Clinton to the hilt…so in my disagreement should I cry “untoward influence!”? well, that’s touching on another subject and I’ll leave it at that.

    • August 14, 2018 at 10:46 pm

      The fact Putin would want Trump as opposed to the war criminal Hillary who threatened war with Russia and destabilize the Middle East in a proxy war is just sanity.

      Why would you believe the very same people who lied us into Iraq and worse ?

      Literally

    • willow
      August 14, 2018 at 10:54 pm

      Obama traveled to the UK to urge voters to vote against Brexit.
      The Saudi’s funded 20 percent of Hillary’s campaign.
      yada-yada-yada

      • Gregory Herr
        August 14, 2018 at 11:25 pm

        And Obama went to France to cheerlead for Macron the week of the election. But that’s exceptional–no indispensable–advice.

      • AnthraxSleuth
        August 15, 2018 at 1:08 am

        Obama wire tapped Merkel’s phone!

        People should really think hard about that when tossing around these horse chit lies about Russia hacking the DNC.

  36. Andy Wilcoxson
    August 14, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    Can I play devil’s advocate and ask a question. Can we rule out the possibility that a hacker in Russia, China, or wherever had remote control of a computer in the United States that they used to hack the DNC?

    49.1 megabytes per second is almost 400 mbps, which is a very fast transfer speed, but there were one gigabit (1000 mbps) connections available in several US markets when these e-mails were stolen. You might not have been able to transfer the files directly from Washington D.C. to Russia at those speeds, but you certainly could have transferred them between computers within the United States at those speeds using gigabit internet connections.

    Is there something I’m missing? How does the file transfer speed prove this was a USB download and not a hack when gigabit internet connections existed that could have accommodated those transfer speeds — maybe not directly to Russia or Europe, but certainly to another US-based computer that foreign hackers may have have remotely controlled.

    • Desert Dave
      August 14, 2018 at 6:09 pm

      Actually a byte is 10 bits total because there is overhead (start and stop bits). So 49.1 MBps is about 491 Mbps. The question of whether the DNC server was attached to a network that fast would be easy to answer, if the FBI or anybody else wanted to check.

      • AnthraxSleuth
        August 15, 2018 at 1:11 am

        A byte is 8 bits.

  37. alley cat
    August 14, 2018 at 11:54 am

    Looking over the comments on Lawrence’s post, I wonder if we’re losing sight of the bigger picture here. Exposing the truth about a presidential candidate, whoever did it (and all the credible evidence to date points toward Seth Rich) isn’t meddling, it’s a public service. The DNC leak didn’t threaten democracy, it promoted it by providing crucial information to the U.S. electorate. Those who claim that revealing the truth about a political candidate is a crime are the ones who constitute the real threat to democracy.

    Smears, hoaxes, fabrications, and psyops are standard operating procedure for U.S. intelligence agencies. You would have to be simple to believe that these agencies would hesitate to use these same tactics against the American public when it furthers their political agenda. Just like you would have to be simple to believe that the officials running these agencies don’t have a political agenda.

    Russia is an obstacle to U.S. global hegemony? Blow it up, after first subverting their economy with groundless sanctions and whipping the American public into a hysterical war frenzy. That’s the grand strategy behind the Russiagate hoax, the Skripal hoax, the Douma hoax, and whatever hoax they dream up next.

    If President Trump is foolish enough to get in the way, he’s expendable, and he knows it now if he didn’t before.

    • Skip Scott
      August 15, 2018 at 8:22 am

      alley cat-

      I’ve thought the same myself. Even if it was the evil Vlad himself who snuck into the DNC, stole the files and personally handed them to Assange, how is bringing the truth about the collusion between team Hillary and the DNC to sabotage the Sanders’ campaign an “attack” on our democracy? Actually it would be a service to our democracy, and an “attack” on an evil oligarchy that was trying to subvert our democracy.

      This whole “evil Ruskies” thing is just ridiculous. Our democracy has been utterly corrupted from within, and providing the truth to the voting public can never be considered an “attack”, no matter the source.

  38. Al Pinto
    August 14, 2018 at 11:49 am

    Quote from the article:

    “The intrusion into the Democratic National Committee mail was a local download—wherever ‘local’ is.”

    “wherever” is a wide definition. While I certainly agree that 22.6MB/s, or ~180Mb/s, does seem a lot like USB 3.0 write speed, one cannot neglect the possibility of over the network transferring the same data with the same speed.

    The DNC server certainly had the bandwidth available for this transfer rate, most hosting service providers do allow ramping up the transfer rate up to 1Gb/s. Verizon and other ISPs in the New York Metropolitan area had been providing fiber connection for businesses and home users for years, with transfer rates of up to 1Gb/s. For home users the most popular speed had been 200Mb/s for years.

    Please keep in mind that 8 bits = 1 Byte… Notice the capitalization of the letter “B”

    The 200Mb/s speed has a maximum transfer rate of 25MB/s. Knowing that the network protocol overhead uses up about 10% of the nominal speed, then the 22.6MB/s transfer rate is easily achievable remotely. And yes, “wherever that local is”.

    Theoretically… The Russians could have hacked a PC/server, with high speed Internet access within the New York Metropolitan, hacked the DNC server from the “Zombie” system, download the archived files to the “Zombie” system and download to possibly couple of other “Zombie” systems, prior to reaching the destination in Russia. At least that’s how I would have done it…

    Even doing so, there should have been traces of these connections in the NSA data warehouse in UTAH, possibly even capturing the transfered archived file. It would not surprise me a bit, if that’s the case. The fact in itself, that there has been no such verification/capture for this connection seems to indicate that the data transfer has taken place directly on the server, via the USB port. Unless of course the NSA does not want to disclose network traces of the connection, since it might implicate a friendly country, maybe the most friendly country for the US, that would also exonerate Russia.

    As for the dates of the file… It seems that these files had been generated just prior to downloading the .7z archived files. The default behavior for .7z is to preserve both the folder and file creation dates, while recording the current time for the archive folder in itself. Of course, this can be changed, both during and/or after archiving…

    • JoeD
      August 14, 2018 at 12:40 pm

      Ok you’re a troll right? Verizon has most certainly not provided fiber connections for home users in the New York Metropolitan area. They stopped their fiber roll out A LONG TIME AGO. So no, the infrastructure does not exist.

      No you don’t know much about network speeds if you believe that you can have those sustained speeds all the way through the connections. If you have ever done internet speed tests you will know that your speed depends a lot on the different nodes you pass through.

      “You’d need a dedicated, leased, 400–megabit line all the way to Russia to achieve that result,” Binney said in a recent interview. ”

      If you can shoe me that and you have something, otherwise, you’re trolling.

      • Al Pinto
        August 14, 2018 at 3:26 pm

        If anyone, you don’t know much about network speeds and Verizon…

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verizon_FiOS

        https://www.verizon.com/home/fios-fastest-internet/

        For businesses, that had been mentioned, Verizon started the fiber rollout even earlier…

        Show me where my numbers are incorrect?

      • Johnmichael2
        August 14, 2018 at 4:23 pm

        trollling ? I don’t think you understand internet data rates nor the capabilities of hackers .. he’s talking about remote control of a PC local to the DNC server with good access not a direct high speed route out of the country.
        Come on folks, the great US of A has been influencing electoral politics of other nations for years by many methods. Russians are not dumb … some of the best virus detection and protection comes out of Kaspersky Labs. Look up the work of Russian and eastern country information science experts; the Chinese, Israelis and Indian practitioners are no dummies either.
        Open your eyes … Russian and other hacking is real and ‘turn about is fair play’ …. we ain’t the rulers of the world anymore in case you didn’t notice.

    • Rob
      August 14, 2018 at 4:28 pm

      This comments section is a place where people are allowed to spout their own ideas and theories, but still, I am amused by commenters who presume to have knowledge about communications technology that is somehow unknown to the likes of William Binney and other genuine experts in the field. I know that this may sound like ad hominem thinking on my part, but some of the opinions regarding technology are so simplistic that they make me laugh.

      • willow
        August 14, 2018 at 11:04 pm

        It’s all good because it leads to deeper understanding of subject and makes us better able to finesse/counter/debate disinformation on forums like the Washington Post or the NYT, where
        opposing views are scant and we need to push back.

    • michael
      August 15, 2018 at 6:59 am

      If the evidence existed, it would have been released in redacted form by the NSA over a year ago (although by now you would think they would have fabricated something).

  39. Diane Rejman
    August 14, 2018 at 10:50 am

    I believe much of this whole “Russiagate” thing started as a disgusting and pathetic attempt to give Hillary an excuse for losing, and is now out of control, with tentacles reaching throughout our country and the world. The DNC has admitted to being cheaters. THAT should be the bigger investigation. Our right to vote should be sacred, but the DNC took all legitimacy away from it. If they thought their “chosen one” couldn’t win the primary without cheating and other assistance, why would they think she could win the main election? She was a horribly bad candidate, and they won’t admit this. So instead – they came up with this whole, “My dog ate my homework” type theory. And yes – it is very scary to think this whole Russiagate conspiracy theory has gotten out of hand, and is now too big to fail. What a ridiculous reason to create trouble with Russia!

    • rosemerry
      August 14, 2018 at 4:25 pm

      I remember Obama in his “lame-duck” period expelling Russian diplomats, stealing their US properties, starting the whole landslide of Russia-hatred when he had spent 8 years helping to reduce the seats of the Democratic Party at all levels of government by his actions. Check out the figures- Democrats lost because of their own faults.

    • August 14, 2018 at 6:12 pm

      The original intent, based on the rhetoric that followed right after the Russiagate narrative was first launched, seem to have been to have the election declared invalid so they could either do it over or have HRC declared the real winner by fiat. Apparently, at some point wiser heads pointed out that wasn’t Constitutionally viable, so the story was toned down to its current level then repeated over and over, per Goebbels’ Law, to ensure the bulk of the public accepted it as proven fact.

      • AnthraxSleuth
        August 15, 2018 at 1:22 am

        don’t kid yourself.
        They still have the fantasy of installing their queen.
        Lawrence Lessig, the Roy L. Furman professor of law and leadership at Harvard Law School.
        Postulates the fantasy that Democrats win the house in 2018.
        A NY congressman/woman takes the dive and resigns so Hillary can be appointed to the seat by NY governor.
        And, she is then elected Speaker of the house putting her in #3 for the presidency.
        Then Pence resigns a- la Spirow Agnew.
        And, Trump is impeached and removed by the Senate.
        Voila Herself is president.

        These F’n people have lost all grip on reality.
        The only people buying the Russia Russia Russia hysteria is the same people pushing it.
        They are delusional.
        Completely unhinged and delusional.

  40. August 14, 2018 at 10:22 am

    Suzie Dawson and Chris Hedges discuss elite power five weeks ago.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zzcDELakRM

    • August 14, 2018 at 1:07 pm

      Thank you for this video!

    • jean
      August 14, 2018 at 3:18 pm

      Thank you, Stephen P!
      I’ll tweet it, to remind people of what Assange has done.

  41. Peter Bowen
    August 14, 2018 at 10:08 am

    Your excellent discussion is only lacking the role of British intelligence. See “The fish stinks from the head down” by Barbara Boyd at LaRouchePAC.com.

  42. anastasia
    August 14, 2018 at 9:49 am

    Guccifer is a manipulator and a fabricator, and time and location cannot be determined? Yet, Guccifer leaves fingerprints of the Russians, in Cyrillic letters. If Guccifer is a manipulator and a fabricator, deliberately leaving fingerprints of the Russians, one need only ask, who in the world would want to pin the blame on the Russians for election interference in the US, and for what reason would they want to do such a thing. When that question is answered, you narrow down who is behind it all.

  43. xeno
    August 14, 2018 at 9:47 am

    The American public has been living in a cloud of mis- and dis- information for decades. This isn’t new.

    Since Trump came on the political scene a couple years ago and scared the big money and big power “elite”, it has become more obvious and extreme.

  44. Christian Chuba
    August 14, 2018 at 8:10 am

    If the hack narrative is ever refuted, the IC community will just fallback to ‘Russians are still attacking our democracy with facebook posts’, aren’t we the fragile, hot house plants. Still I would love to see the truth come out someday, whatever that may be.

    This other article makes a convincing case that the first set of Russians indicted by Mueller were just commercial scammers, not spy masters from the Kremlin … http://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/02/mueller-indictement-the-russian-influence-is-a-commercial-marketing-scheme.html
    I hate that he is an anonymous blogger who calls himself ‘Moon of Alabama’ but dang, he just writes so well.

    The last set of accusations centers around hacking voter registration servers which is reported as ‘Russians hacking state elections’.
    I’ve wondered if this is just another commercial enterprise where hackers are just doing routine identity theft, not nice, but not a state enterprise.

    I remember Putin wanting to have a treaty with the U.S. to clamp down on all international hacking but that would require reciprocity and this would prevent our infiltration of their systems. This never gets any mention in our MSM.

    • Chucky LeRoi
      August 14, 2018 at 4:19 pm

      Just a very small point Christian. The blogger at MOA is hardly anonymous. Click the “about this blog” link on the site. I even have his home address for donations…

  45. F. G. Sanford
    August 14, 2018 at 7:58 am

    Observations I have shared here in the past have had little impact on the grand scheme of things, so it is with little hope that I comment today. Arguments become complex and tortured, esoteric even to the point of grasping at philosophical abstractions which, in the end, bear no resemblance to the actual events.

    We are asked to believe that Russian “insiders” fed information damaging to Candidate Trump to Fusion GPS and Christopher Steele, who then concocted the “dossier”. This would serve to subvert his electability, and failing that, would provide an “insurance policy” to insure that his Presidency would be nonviable. In the same breath, we are asked to believe that those same Russians who sabotaged Mr. Trump’s credibility – wait for it – manipulated the election to insure that his opponent would lose. Either strategy would result in an outcome unfavorable to Russia. Either Pence would assume leadership after an engineered coup, or Clinton would have won. Neither outcome benefits the Russians. YOU SIMPLY CAN’T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS. All of this ignores what I and others observed long before the election: Hillary Clinton was the most repugnant candidate the DNC could possibly have chosen. Gotta give it to COL Lawrence Wilkerson, who stated frankly: “I just don’t think she’s electable”.

    Without all the ontological baggage, “Fideism” simply refers to articles of religious faith. Religion cares not a wit for evidence. In fact, it relies on the rejection of common logic in favor of “faith”, itself the polar opposite of empirical, evidence-based thinking.

    When news outlets of the day smeared, fabricated, edited, misrepresented and outright lied about Jim Garrison’s case regarding the JFK assassination, the affronts to his integrity became so egregious and so obvious that, under the “Fairness Doctrine”, he was granted a thirty minute rebuttal on one of the major television networks. To paraphrase, he said, “The American public has been sold a children’s fairytale. But we are not children, and as adults, the consequences of believing such nonsense will be devastating. We will eventually lose our democracy”.

    Garrison’s prediction has come to pass. We now vehemently defend fairytales as reality collapses in front of our very eyes.

    • Bob Van Noy
      August 14, 2018 at 8:52 am

      Thanks F. G. Sanford for the very appropriate referral to Jim Garrison. It was his dedication in the face of near impossible odds that convinced me to dedicate myself to fighting the ongoing battle for honesty and justice with respect to JFK’s Assassination. When I remember the lifelong dedication of Jim Garrison, Fletcher Prouty, and the many totally dedicated Journalists, Researchers, and Public Servants like William Binney, I’m encouraged that the Truth will yet win out

    • August 14, 2018 at 1:33 pm

      Somehow I think Christopher Steele is the link to all of Russiagate. He was the head of Mi6’s Russia Desk and “held the hand” of the dying Alexander Litvinenko(the 1st alleged poison victim of Putin), he was still around for the mysterious suicide of Dr. Kelley, he was hired by Fusion GP3, first by the GOP, then by the Dems to dig up dirt on Trump. He was then hired by Crowdstrike to clean up the DNC server(denied to the FBI). His association with Portman Down might well connect him with the Skripal poisonings.

      • jdd
        August 14, 2018 at 4:36 pm

        You are on target. In fact there is speculation that Skripal may have been one of the infamous “sources” of Steele’s salacious dossier. In any case, Skripal was recruited to MI6 by one Pablo Miller, during the time Steele was undercover in Moscow, and who in addition to living near Skripal, was employed by Orbis, Steele’s Private Intelligence firm. Interestingly,according to the Telegraph, Miller’s association with Orbis has since been removed from his linkedin profile.Steele also pops up in a key role in conjunction with State’s Victoria Nuland and Jonathan Winer in the violent 2014 coup against the elected government of Ukraine. where he began surveillance of Paul Manafort, and was later involved,along with his boss richarad Dearlove of MI6, in the targeting of Mike Flynn, Carter Page and George Papadopolous, the intended entrapment of the last two occurring on British soil, and then fed into the FBI by John Brennan.

        • August 14, 2018 at 10:24 pm

          jdd…if you have a link for Steele’s connection with the 2014 Ukraine coup, I would appreciate it if you would post it here…thanks

    • rosemerry
      August 14, 2018 at 4:28 pm

      No wonder Reagan got rid of the “Fairness Doctrine”. The US MSM could not survive it these days.

      I wonder too how many people remember the McCarthy times, which seem to have returned with a vengeance without the commies!!

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 5:32 pm

      Re Wilkerson “I just don’t think she’s electable”.
      This might be a good time to remind readers that HRC has never won a contested election in her life.

      • David G
        August 15, 2018 at 8:49 am

        She was twice elected to the U.S. Senate with opponents on the ballot, and had to win contested primaries both times.

        It doesn’t speak very well of the people of New York that she won all those races, but in what sense were they not “contested elections”, at least in the limited sense that applies to U.S. politics generally?

  46. GKJames
    August 14, 2018 at 7:02 am

    (1) Does this set an impossibly high bar? Assuming one can navigate the technological intricacies — the point about transfer speeds seems reasonable enough — can’t one equally conclude that there is compelling evidence of Russia’s ongoing (over years) cyber-operations against a number of countries? Certainly, there is the counter-argument, Well, you’ve not proved anything. True enough, but in terms of crafting policies, we’re never dealing with a proof-beyond-reasonable-doubt standard. And even if we agreed that DNC emails were leaked (by Americans) rather than hacked by Russians, that wouldn’t be the end of the inquiry, would it?

    (2) Reasonable people will agree that hysteria should not drive policy. But hasn’t US policy — especially in connection with the country’s relationship with the rest of the world — been driven by exactly that, more often than not, for eons? The Infotainment Complex recognized long ago that there are profits to be made by luring eyeballs. The particular flavor may vary with time (Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Mexico, etc.), but the hysteria itself is ever-present. Today’s flavor happens to be Russia, a perennial best-seller that benefits a variety of domestic constituencies, not least the Threat Industry. Whether the public is being manipulated or simply getting what it wants is an open question. My own view is that, by and large, very little happens without the public’s (even if only tacit) support.

    (3) US foreign policy has always been an extension of domestic politics. Politicians taking sensible positions invariably would be flogged by power-seekers for being “soft” on some contrived evil. Reality, especially the nuanced kind, has rarely played much of a role. Nor has self-reflection. Neither Washington nor the public it ostensibly serves show a capacity for asking, What might explain Russia’s position on, for instance, Crimea, Ukraine, and Georgia? The cavalier decision to expand NATO eastward to Russia’s border as THE source of Moscow’s resentment — shared by a large proportion of the Russian public — simply doesn’t compute in American minds. That non-computation is bipartisan; it’s simply how an empire does things.

    (4) What remains strikingly elusive is a public exploration of how/why information on social media was found persuasive by American voters, irrespective of who planted the information. If it hadn’t been Russians, would the November 2016 outcome have been different? Unlikely. A cursory look at the on-line world makes it obvious that ignorance is the coin of the realm, and that Americans do just fine in that regard all on their own.

    All to say that the contentiousness among the world’s powers will stay with us. As will the national myth-making. The best that can be hoped for is that there is enough self-restraint all around to keep in check the worst of the insanity.

    • mike k
      August 14, 2018 at 8:02 am

      GK – Your comment can be summed up as: Nothing new here, get used to it – there’s nothing we can do about it. Really? The establishment would dearly love for all of us to adopt your ho hum attitude.

      • GKJames
        August 14, 2018 at 9:08 am

        Am suggesting that the problem facing what’s left of the republic is far greater than a hack/leak case, “collusion”, or even the Nov ’16 outcome. The American mind needs re-wiring, something that Americans had better do themselves if they don’t want a changing geopolitical landscape to do it for them. Sure, there are (always have been) people with a clue, but they tend to be outnumbered, now more than ever as widely cheered appeals to the visceral have taken over the ethos of government itself. Problem is, the opposition (at least at national leadership levels) to the current administration is mired in incoherence, obsessed to distraction with the obviously woeful personal qualities of the president, and devoid of imagination (the realistic kind). In other words, liberal democracy as we’ve known it since 1945 and imperfect as it’s been, is under threat. And the threat doesn’t come from Russia, but from half of a population no longer persuaded that it’s the only viable way of sustaining the grand experiment. Concerns with anything less than that strike me as a matter of nibbling at the edges and avoiding what we really need to do: look at ourselves and stop pointing fingers at whatever “others” we can conjure as the source of our troubles.

        • August 14, 2018 at 10:56 am

          Dear GK,

          Thanks for both your comments and the wider perspective they offer.

          Ray

  47. August 14, 2018 at 6:45 am

    A further thought.

    We have, of course, someone who can precisely and accurately answer any question in the matter.

    Unfortunately, he is more or less imprisoned at the behest of your American government.

    And should he be turned out of his current situation, he faces certain extradition to the US where he faces ugly treatment and a long prison term.

    Such are the realities of American power in the world today.

    By the way, his name is Julian Assange.

    And the Democratic Party’s own candidate, Ms Clinton, was quoted in her charming fashion, “Can’t we just drone him or something?”

    Of course, it was in line with many ugly statements by Clinton, as the one, after Qaddafi’s assassination – a man who did his best for his people and kept them in peace – “We came, we saw, he died! Ha ha ha!”

    It isn’t just Trump who has a filthy mouth and constantly tells lies.

    It is the whole American power establishment.

    There is no easy solution, at least not in our time.

    Powerful people who are determined to do terrible things will do them.

    The total stakes for America’s power establishment are too big for any argument or evidence to turn it around.

  48. August 14, 2018 at 6:28 am

    But this is just the way American politicians have learned to deal with any adverse finding about almost anything, especially in foreign affairs.

    They just ignore it.

    “How far will we allow our government to escalate against others without proof of anything?” is a reader quote cited by the author.

    But I ask, first, what the “allow” is doing in there?

    Just what options, what real power, do average Americans have today? My best guess is that it is close to zero.

    Yes, you’re still free, at least for a little while, to write and speak words, words, and more words. But their net effect on the giant engine that is the American power establishment is close to zero also.

    And perhaps before long – given events like the Alex Jones creepy stunts – you may not even be able to utter the words.

    The stupid, endless stuff about Russia and hacks is just one small battle front of a huge multi-front war being waged by the American power establishment for world supremacy.

    If you want to understand the engines driving all this, read:

    https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2018/07/22/john-chuckman-comment-how-american-politics-really-work-why-there-are-terrible-candidates-and-constant-wars-and-peoples-problems-are-ignored-why-heroes-like-julian-assange-are-persecuted-and-r/

    • willow
      August 14, 2018 at 11:29 pm

      The censorship extends to the alternative commentators too. KPFA, Pacifica radio, which hosts Democracy Now with Amy Goodman, just removed a long running program, Guns & Butter hosted by Bonnie Falkner because she recently dared to discuss verboten subjects, i.e., Zionism.

      • Gregory Herr
        August 15, 2018 at 12:10 am

        I was hoping she was vacationing. I’ll miss her interviews with people like William Pepper, William Engdahl, the Saker, and many others. What a disappointment.

      • exiled off mainstreet
        August 15, 2018 at 2:53 am

        They’d rather stick with establishment shills, which is what Amy Goodman has evolved into as a serial apologist for yankee war crimes in the middle east.

    • exiled off mainstreet
      August 15, 2018 at 2:51 am

      Great articles; great responses; great website. You’ve accurately described the true nature of the present day yankee imperium in your responses and articles.

  49. AnthraxSleuth
    August 14, 2018 at 4:22 am

    Thank Dog our wonderful elites in the halls of power are spending millions; if not hundreds of millions of dollars on Russiafarce.
    Instead of frittering it away on hardening the electrical grid to an EMP.

    I feel so represented and cared for by our illustrious elites…

  50. David G
    August 14, 2018 at 3:12 am

    Ok, here’s my technical question, which is not calculated to make me very popular around here.

    Suppose the following:

    Somebody (the Russians, the Samoans, elves, whoever) did in fact hack the DNC computer for these emails, and this was done at the expected, relatively slow download rate. They then may or may not have manipulated the data or metadata in some fashion on their own machine. The somebody then uploaded these files onto a USB flash drive, and then re-downloaded them onto another computer at the high transfer rate noted by the VIPS. From this second computer they were sent on to Wikileaks (or some intermediary).

    Does the VIPS analysis preclude this scenario? If not, is it possible that they are correct about the download rate, but still have not excluded the possibility that the initial taking of the emails from the DNC was done by hack?

    • AnthraxSleuth
      August 14, 2018 at 3:54 am

      The disseminator (wikileaks/Julian Assange) of those LEAKED emails has already answered the question.
      He has unequivocally stated that the emails were leaked; Not hacked.
      NOTHING Wikileaks has released or claimed has ever been found to be false.

      Kim Dotcom also claims to have intimate knowledge of the leak.
      Both have offered to give testimony in this entire farce investigation
      Yet, the grand inquisitor, Mueller the 9/11 and Anthrax, coverup artist refuses to interview them.
      That alone should tell you what is really going on.

      • David G
        August 14, 2018 at 4:07 am

        So you’re saying there’s nothing in the VIPS analysis that refutes the scenario I outlined? Just those unrelated statements, upon which VIPS did not rely?

        I’d be surprised if that’s the case, but I’m waiting to hear from someone with useful knowledge on the subject. That doesn’t seem to be you.

        • AnthraxSleuth
          August 14, 2018 at 1:40 pm

          That “someone” with the most knowledge on the subject has already spoken. His name is Julian Assange and he flat out said it came from a leak not a hack.

          Who else do you think is more qualified to make a statement on the hack than Julian himself?

        • Tom P
          August 18, 2018 at 11:30 am

          Binney has also stated it is impossible for anything to be transmitted from the U.S. to another country and the NSA to be unaware of it. Since he designed the system, I believe that disqualifies your hypothesis of it being re-downloaded to look as if it were a leak.

    • gratification
      August 14, 2018 at 4:56 am

      So what you’re saying is that these cunning Russians faked the metadata on the DNC download (or whatever it was) so as to obfuscate the fact that it was them but left other “Russian fingerprints” – such as cyrillic text – that pointed to them? Baldrickian cunning! It’s beyond my simple mind.

      https://disobedientmedia.com/2018/04/new-analysis-by-the-forensicator-examines-russian-fingerprints-left-by-guccifer-2-0/

      • David G
        August 14, 2018 at 5:34 am

        I’m not saying anything like that.

        What I’m *asking* is how the VIPS analysis can tell that the download (or upload, whatever) speed that they are relying on was from the *beginning* of the data’s journey to Wikileaks (i.e. the initial transfer from the DNC server), which is what is required to prove their thesis, rather than from some subsequent step along the way?

        I’m not crediting myself with any genius in bringing up this point. It seems like a fairly obvious challenge to make to the VIPS analysis, and I’m sure it’s been made elsewhere.

        I imagine the VIPS have dealt with this question long ago somewhere or other, but I’ve never run across it and am hoping someone here has the technical chops to enlighten me.

        In the mean time, how about everybody else stop trying to mischaracterize my question or throw irrelevant (to this specific issue) facts at me?

        • Litchfield
          August 14, 2018 at 7:28 am

          I am also no technocrat.
          My understanding is that any hack or leak leaves “fingerprints” in the files.
          Both the original and the target files.

          Thus, in the case of the scenario you propose—earlier hacks that were amalgamated and transformed into one large leak (I think this is your scenario)—there would be fingerprints of the earlier hacks.

          AFAIK no allegations or evidence have been put forth concerning earlier suspicious hacks that could have been transformed into one large, fast leak.

          We need to look at the very strong possibility that the real purpose of Mueller’s investigation is to hide something, not reveal something. That is the strong record of his CV.

          Can someone tell me whether a person who has posted regularly in the past and who wants to post here must enter name and email address afresh with each and every post?

          Or is it just me?

          • David G
            August 14, 2018 at 7:44 am

            Well, what you say may well be true, Litchfield, but it still seems to me to be external to the VIPS point about internet download-speed limitations, upon which – based on Patrick Lawrence’s article – they seem to be hanging a great deal, especially since they now acknowledge that “[t]he conclusions initially drawn on time and location in VIPS50 are now subject to these recent discoveries” (i.e. have been brought into question).

            So I think my question stands.

            I too now have to re-enter name and email with each post, and I also was wondering whether it was just me. Guess not. Maybe an anti-spam thing?

          • Skip Scott
            August 14, 2018 at 11:39 am

            Litchfield-

            The re-entry of your personal data started a couple weeks ago. I believe it is a safety precaution so that your personal email address is no longer stored by CN. I could be wrong.

        • John Dorset
          August 18, 2018 at 7:56 am

          You are certainly making sense David.

          The provided analysis by VIPS is the type of stuff I do for a living and not for any political gain, just the money. And I do not understand at all how VIPS reached their conclusions based on the little information publicly provided. There are many scenarios which will allow for the given timings and still qualify as a hack from an outsider. As you wrote it depends if there were any stages to the journey the data made. It’s unlikely that they’d have pulled the data all the way to Russia anyway since NSA monitors the fibers under the oceans. And also, any decent hacker would obviously mangle the data as not to leave traces to method or owner (unless so intended). How to assign then so much importance to its state?

          As the main story goes “hackers allegedly gain access to the DNC network using credentials stolen from a DCCC employee. By June, they allegedly compromised 33 computers, using the same relay system as for the DCCC”.

          Okay VIPS experts pay attention: 33 computers were compromised, full network access had been gained and possibly also some control or admin systems (it’s not claimed but also not asked). Now tell me please why you are so certain the files could *not* first be downloaded or restructured locally before moving on to another control system perhaps not far outside the network? Or how to distinguish between the actions of a leaker and a hacker? Since they had perhaps similar privileges and access, because you know, that’s what hackers do?

          The simple unchallenged presence of this scenario shows that the investigation so far is not clean, not impartial enough.

          • John
            August 19, 2018 at 12:24 am

            Could not agree more. I posted a list of problems with the VIPS interpretation that is “wasn’t a hack”, but they are stuck in moderation. Hopefully they will be released.

    • Tom Welsh
      August 14, 2018 at 8:41 am

      As I understand your question, you are asking whether some information may not have been tracelessly stolen from the DNC server quite separately from the transfer to an external device described by VIPS.

      My first reaction to this is that, obviously, any information could be copied from any computer at any time by any person – but if the operation left no traces, nobody could know that it ever took place.

      The only data that investigators have to go on are the files provided by Wikileaks and the logs and other records of the DNC server itself. As far as I know, those point only to one download – that described by VIPS and this article.

      Incidentally, you have reversed the usual meanings of “upload” and “download”. Conventionally, one downloads data from a repository or database, and uploads to it.

      • Tom Welsh
        August 14, 2018 at 8:50 am

        Having had a look at https://disobedientmedia.com/2017/07/new-research-shows-guccifer-2-0-files-were-copied-locally-not-hacked/ which explains the forensic methods used to derive the download speeds, I admit that my first comment was inaccurate.

        The files used were in fact not those provided by Wikileaks. The article linked to above states that,

        ‘The Forensicator specifically discusses the data that was eventually published by Guccifer 2.0 under the title “NGP-VAN.” This should not be confused with the separate publication of the DNC emails by Wikileaks’.

        The file copy times were derived from a compressed archive containing all the files of interest. You can see a partial picture of the archive listing in the linked article.

        • David G
          August 14, 2018 at 9:43 am

          I appreciate your comments, Tom Welsh, but I feel I am just foundering deeper in confusion.

          To be clear, I wasn’t “asking whether some information may not have been tracelessly stolen from the DNC server quite separately from the transfer to an external device described by VIPS.” At least, I didn’t mean to ask that.

          I want to know specifically why the VIPS are sure that the speedy download/upload rate they build their case on happened exactly when the data left the DNC server, and not at some later point in their history. The VIPS argument depends on the former being the case.

          The article you link to in fact *does* speak to this point, which is great, but as you say it specificies that it is *not* about the DNC files that ended up at Wikileaks.

          But this Patrick Lawrence article has William Binney “examin[ing] all the metadata associated with the files [Guccifer] 2.0 has made public” without making any distinction between that and the DNC/ Wikileaks files.

          I guess I really don’t have a handle on the essential details here.

          While I like reading Patrick Lawrence’s reflections on statecraft, I think he may have been out of his depth here. There’s nothing here that clarifies these questions, and that’s without even mentioning the passages that are confusing on their own, such as the paragraph about how “G-2.0” somehow “merged” two sets of data into … two sets of data.

          I realized my use of “download” (vs. “upload”) was off after my initial comment, and have tried to avoid it in the later ones, but Binney himself is quoted using it in the “reversed” sense in the article, and I took my lead from that.

          • Skip Scott
            August 14, 2018 at 11:37 am

            David G-

            Here is a good video of Bill Binney explaining the merged data sets.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qe1movhtIfA

            As to your other question, it is my understanding that ALL transfer of files leaves metadata, and Bill Binney and the Forensicator have backtracked the metadata to the original download that was of a speed only possible (at that time and place) locally via a storage device.

          • David G
            August 14, 2018 at 2:29 pm

            Thanks, Skip Scott. That’s helpful.

          • Litchfield
            August 14, 2018 at 8:23 pm

            I thought that there were two incidents concerning hacks/leaks, which some people are conflating.

            1. *Leak* of files from DNC computers. This info ended up being given to Wikileaks by a person w ho is known to both Craig Murray and Julian Assange
            .
            2. *Hack* of Hillary’s private email server, including emails that should not have been on a private server. And that there is some speculation that the Chinese hacked into Hillary’s private server.

            Am I wrong about that?

          • AnthraxSleuth
            August 15, 2018 at 4:23 am

            “*Hack* of Hillary’s private email server, including emails that should not have been on a private server. And that there is some speculation that the Chinese hacked into Hillary’s private server.

            Am I wrong about that?”

            Not wrong.
            Any intelligence agency and every intelligence agency, including 3rd world rate, were in and out of Hillary’s paper MCSE server set up.
            FFS Brian Pagliano was busted asking for help on how to delete files on Reddit.

            Aaron Schwartz got the last laugh!
            And, we all got a few more years of an unradiated planet.
            Well, so long as you pretend like the MSM does that Fukushima is a mass fertilaztion event.

          • David G
            August 15, 2018 at 9:04 am

            Litchfield –

            It’s reasonable to assume that Clinton’s home server was compromised by any number of intelligence agencies, but that’s not connected to any of the emails that have been publicly released – because they’re spies and Wikileaks is journalism, no matter how much U.S. pols and their stooges want to pretend otherwise.

            Part of the Russia-gate snow job is to confuse this matter, though – for instance by pretending references by Trump on the campaign trail to “Hilary’s emails” were actually about the DNC and Podesta leaks.

          • John
            August 18, 2018 at 4:40 pm

            Skip Scott, You are wrong when you say “is my understanding that ALL transfer of files leaves metadata”. The metadata in this case is file timestamps, which get replaced on subsequent “cp” type copies.

            Any prior file timestamps from prior copies were lost. This is actually in the Forensicator’s notes.

      • Litchfield
        August 14, 2018 at 8:12 pm

        ” other records of the DNC server itself”

        I thought that no one had been able to get their hands on the DNC servers—the DNC had not turned them over to law enforcement or the FBI— to do forensics on them.
        Am I wrong about that?

        • backwardsevolution
          August 15, 2018 at 2:22 am

          Litchfield – no, you’ve got it right, the DNC servers have not been forensically examined by the FBI. They were given to Crowdstrike to examine, if you can believe it.

    • Desert Dave
      August 14, 2018 at 11:48 am

      One thing has been bugging me about Binney’s argument. Yes, it is nearly impossible for someone in Russia to transfer the files that quickly. But who’s to say the “hacker” was not much closer to the DNC server, somewhere near DC?

      They then transported the files via thumb drive or (more likely) portable disk drive to Wikileaks.

      Mind you, I desperately want Binney to be right, and for the whole charade to fall apart, but this seems to be a weakness in his forensic argument.

      • David G
        August 14, 2018 at 2:57 pm

        My understanding has been that the VIPS are saying any internet upload at the recorded rate would have been impossible under the applicable conditions, even a local one. Despite the Binney quote in this piece referring to a “dedicated, leased, 400–megabit line all the way to Russia”, I hadn’t thought that’s really their argument. Am I wrong?

        In any case, without any expertise myself, I’m inclined to trust them on that, at least provisionally, but it’s true that at this point the VIPS seem to be resting their entire thesis on that one point – there’s not a lot of redundancy (in the good sense) there.

        • Litchfield
          August 14, 2018 at 8:15 pm

          “Despite the Binney quote in this piece referring to a “dedicated, leased, 400–megabit line all the way to Russia”, I hadn’t thought that’s really their argument. Am I wrong?”

          I think you are right. That is my understanding. That any upload/download over the Internet would be much slower than a transfer to a flash drive.

          I thought the mention of the 400-megabit line to Russia was a bit of hyperbole designed to show how ridiculous the upload over internet scenario is.

        • Curious
          August 16, 2018 at 1:11 am

          Litchfield,
          Although you are not a ‘techie’ the bottom line is not proximity. One can be in the same room and not duplicate the speed of transfer. The internet is set up with limitations inherent in the technology available.
          As a personal reference, doing the Olympics in Italy, we had our own ‘home run fiber’ with our fiber run to NY with copper as a backup. I do not have William Binneys’ skills and tech savvy, but I do know as a different techie we could not create anywhere close to the speed this argument entails. And when on our ‘home run’ fiber from the US to Italy we had speed issues, not because of the fiber links, but the interfaces that terminate the ends of the fiber. This is important even for a non techie. If one doesn’t have the latest and greatest fiber interface, or (god help us) copper pairs, the speed is dependent on the termination of the lines.
          This hacking thing is as bogus as the world has seen, mainly because a lot of people don’y Know the difference between a hack and a leak, and would have to put down too many beers to learn.
          Given what I know, I would trust Mr Binney to tell us what is possible, and again, it is not proximity, nor super copper pairs, fiber, not sat feeds. He, above others probably built what we now use randomly and he knows what is possible. This is just a suggestion to trust a man with his experience which is uncommon to those who have not built systems in their lives, and can only question without tech info.

      • Desert Dave
        August 14, 2018 at 6:13 pm

        Actually I think they underestimate some because to transmit a byte serially takes 10 bits total because there is overhead (start and stop bits). So 49.1 MBps is about 491 Mbps.

        Was a 491 Mbps network connected to the DNC computer? Probably not (that’s very fast) but it could be easily verified if the FBI or anybody else cared about the truth.

    • AnthraxSleuth
      August 14, 2018 at 1:53 pm

      What you don’t seem to be able to grasp is that “manipulating” the “data” or “metadata” would leave fingerprints of the manipulation as well.
      As was demonstrated by the VIPS being able to discern that the Guccifer 2.0 data was actually 2 seperate batches of data “manipulated” into one set.

      I left any snark I have for you in my head and not on the keyboard.
      I ask that you do the same in the future so we can have an adult conversation on the subject and not an emotionally filled rant.

      nonsense like “I’d be surprised if that’s the case, but I’m waiting to hear from someone with useful knowledge on the subject. That doesn’t seem to be you.” is petty and childish.

      • David G
        August 14, 2018 at 2:40 pm

        You should also consider leaving in your head aspersions such as telling people who are honestly seeking information that they are not “able to grasp” things.

        Compare your aggressive approach to helpful attempts at addressing my question from Litchfield, Tom Welsh, and Skip Scott (so far).

        You seem like a wants-the-last-word kind of person. Looking forward to reading it.

        • AnthraxSleuth
          August 14, 2018 at 4:21 pm

          I was quite polite to you in my first response.
          You drew first blood.

          Your question has been answered.
          Any attempt to adjust the metadata would be traceable as was demonstrated by the 2 data sets being discovered as merged into 1 data set.

          • Litchfield
            August 14, 2018 at 8:25 pm

            Why not be perfectly polite in all responses?
            What is this “first blood” nonsense?
            Grow up!!!

          • AnthraxSleuth
            August 15, 2018 at 1:45 am

            @Litchfield
            “Why not be perfectly polite in all responses?”

            Perhaps you could ask your buddy that same question.

            “Grow up!!!”

            Introspection
            Learn it!
            Live it!

          • backwardsevolution
            August 15, 2018 at 3:12 am

            Litchfield – there are many people who come on sites like this, pretending to be novices, when their real objective is to place doubt in everybody’s minds. That is their plan, to create confusion, obfuscate. Of course these people have the right to question what VIPS has discovered, but notice what they never ask for:

            1) where are the DNC servers?

            2) why haven’t the DNC servers been handed over to the FBI?

            3) why did the FBI accept Crowdstrike’s analysis of the DNC servers?

            4) why don’t we allow VIPS access to these servers, along with the FBI, so that a complete analysis can be done?

            5) why don’t we allow VIPS access to NSA data in order to follow the evidence from beginning to end?

            VIPS are doing the best job they can with what they have, but they are left with trying to piece a puzzle together. Let’s get our hands on the real data.

            We can’t know whether David G is sincere in his questions or whether he’s just trying to discredit VIPS (yes, that is the real objective of some people). I have my own opinion, but I’ll keep that to myself.

          • David G
            August 15, 2018 at 9:18 am

            backwardsevolution –

            I don’t think you did a particularly good job about keeping your opinion about me to yourself here.

            I didn’t ask the questions you list because I was asking about something germane to this specific article which I wanted to learn more about.

            If you equate that with a “plan, to create confusion, obfuscate”, then how are you different from our members of Congress who are delegitimizing everybody who questions their preferred narrative?

      • John
        August 18, 2018 at 7:20 pm

        “What you don’t seem to be able to grasp is that “manipulating” the “data” or “metadata” would leave fingerprints of the manipulation as well.” – False

        In the Forensicator analysis related to copy speed, the “metadata” was mostly file datestamps, which are wildly manipulable. I could easily re-write all the file datestamps by setting my system clock, extracting all the data, copying it via ‘cp’ and re-compressing it. This would wipe out all the prior datestamps and purge all daestamp metadata.

        And given that we have way of actually verifying where or at what stage the Forensicator sources files were generated, putting much faith in the Forensicator analysis is a bad idea.

  51. August 14, 2018 at 2:00 am

    I couldn’t agree more. Lockeed Martin and the numerous Political sellouts as well as the War merchants, including corporate media, need another Russian cold war to justify getting enormous government contracts that keep them glutinously feeding from the troth. This fake Russian narrative seems to tie the President’s hands until the mid-terms
    where they hope to flip the house and stop the investigation by the House Intel committee and politically damage him with impeachment and then to oust him in the 2020 election while setting the narrative to justify Cold War 2.0

  52. alley cat
    August 14, 2018 at 1:27 am

    U.S. neoconservatism is just the latest permutation of imperialism that has plagued us since the dawn of human history. Thucydides documented the blind greed and pig-headedness that destroyed Greek civilization almost two and a half millennia ago in his History of the Peloponnesian War:

    “What made war inevitable was the growth of Athenian power and the fear which this caused in Sparta.”

    And from Pericles’ speech to the Athenians:

    “And do not imagine that what we are fighting for is simply the question of freedom or slavery: there is also involved the loss of our empire and the dangers arising from the hatred which we have incurred in administering it. Nor is it any longer possible for you to give up this empire, though there may be some people who in a mood of sudden panic and in a spirit of political apathy actually think that this would be a fine and noble thing to do. Your empire is now like a tyranny: it may have been wrong to take it; it is certainly dangerous to let it go.”

    Add half a cup of Goebbels and Bernays sauce and a heaping tablespoon of hysteria to Pericles’ recipe for Armageddon, and voila! you have a deadly dish of yellow journalism like the one served up by the Washington Post editorial of Feb. 6, 2003:

    “Irrefutable

    After Secretary of State Colin L. Powell’s presentation to the United Nations Security Council yesterday, it is hard to imagine how anyone could doubt that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction. . . .

    . . . .Diplomats from these nations [e.g., France and Germany] do not dispute Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld’s assertion that “any country on the face of the Earth with an active intelligence program knows that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction.

    . . . .None say Iraq has complied [with U.N. Security Council Resolution 1441]. Until now, however, they have cynically argued that the inspectors must uncover evidence proving what they already know, or that it’s too early to judge Saddam Hussein’s cooperation. Mr. Powell’s presentation stripped all credibility from that dodge.”

    All a perfect iteration of the law of the lynch mob: We don’t need no stinkin’ evidence, everyone knows they’re guilty!

    • August 14, 2018 at 1:55 pm

      Dear alley cat,

      Good points, all. Thanks.

      (I keep learning a whole lot from the many knowledgeable people who comment here. Please, nobody stop!)

      Ray

      • alley cat
        August 14, 2018 at 4:59 pm

        Many thanks to you Ray for all you are doing and have done.

      • Litchfield
        August 14, 2018 at 8:26 pm

        Dear Ray,

        So many thanks for all you do. And for always showing a pleasant demeanor.

    • David G
      August 15, 2018 at 9:33 am

      “Bernays sauce” is good.

      I watched Powell’s U.N. presentation live. Even on its face – before the specific falsehoods had been exposed – it was so obviously feeble, yet the media unanimously praised it as irresistibly convincing. This left a lasting impression on me, and it came to mind a few weeks ago during the stupefying media meltdown following the Trump-Putin Helsinki summit.

  53. jaycee
    August 13, 2018 at 9:51 pm

    I would say the roll-out of Cold War 2.0 and the concerted demonizing of Putin and the Russian Federation began with the Ukraine Coup in February 2014, as was well covered here at Consortium News. The policy – isolate Russia as a pariah nation – was set before the Maidan events reached their resolution. Victoria Nuland’s “f—- the EU” rant was in response to efforts to mediate the situation and possibly spoil or derail the plans. IMHO, the Russian response to the violent coup was fully expected by the Americans to have been a tanks-in-the streets-Czechoslovakia-1968 scenario, and yet all they got was a Crimean referendum and a frozen stalemate in eastern Ukraine. Still, policy being policy, NATO reacted as if there had been a full invasion regardless.

    Anecdotally, conversations I’ve had with intelligent, progressive, good-hearted persons suggests the election of Trump has in effect destabilized their critical thinking abilities. This has opened up the space in which the worst aspects of Cold War 2.0 have flourished. In their minds, the urgent need to remove Trump by any means, fair or foul, fully overwhelms any other priorities, including objective consideration of the current moment.

    • Joe Tedesky
      August 13, 2018 at 10:14 pm

      I think you are right about Ukraine. I also recall that everything went downhill after Putin negotiated for Assad to give up all Syria’s chemical weapons. Which gave cause to believe Putin was being punished for interfering in the Coalitions schemes. I think Robert Parry sighted that as well.

      No matter jaycee I too believe that Ukraine was where the U.S. fired the first bullet. This New World Order the U.S. represents doesn’t negotiate, no instead it’s either our way or no way, is the mantra of the tribe. Joe

    • Joe Tedesky
      August 13, 2018 at 11:08 pm

      I wrote a response jaycee that went to the wind…. what I was saying was Putin got punished with the uprising in Ukraine after he pulled Assad out of the chemical weapons debate. Joe

      Suggestion the Consortium needs to get this comment boards algorithm problem figured out.

      • Al Pinto
        August 14, 2018 at 10:52 am

        The “comment boards algorithm problem” is getting on my nerves and caused my to shy away from this news site. Is this issue intentional by CN to filter out most extreme and/or certain views? CN certainly changed at the time the leadership changed…

        • Joe Tedesky
          August 14, 2018 at 3:50 pm

          Al in all fairness to the new management, this comment has acted up before. This happened while our beloved Robert Parry was still active in this site. I think it is a cliché, but I also feel this problem needs remedied quickly. Joe

        • August 14, 2018 at 6:27 pm

          There seems to be an increasing level of odd behavior in comments sections on several of the major alternative news sites I frequent; on one, the commentariat refers to it as Skynet having devoured their work.

          I’m not drawing any conclusions, but I do have a foil hat handy.

    • Sibiriak
      August 14, 2018 at 2:55 am

      Jaycee: “I would say the roll-out of Cold War 2.0 and the concerted demonizing of Putin and the Russian Federation began with the Ukraine Coup in February 2014…”
      ————————————

      I would say the first turning point was the imprisonment of Khodorkovsky and the restoration of Russian sovereignty in the energy sphere. Subsequent major inflection points have been: the 2008 war with Georgia, the 2014 events in Ukraine, and the post-2016- election manufactured anti-Russia hysteria/neo-McCarthyism.

      Kees van der Pijl fills in the details here (ignore the title of the piece): https://www.unz.com/article/why-was-malaysian-airlines-flight-mh17-shot-down/

    • OlyaPola
      August 14, 2018 at 4:42 am

      “I would say the roll-out of Cold War 2.0 and the concerted demonizing of Putin and the Russian Federation began with the Ukraine Coup in February 2014,”

      As in statistics perceived trajectories are functions of framing including evaluation horizons.

      From inception, and through declarations such as the Monroe doctrine, some in the misrepresentation “United States of America” have perceived others as simultaneously existential threats and existential opportunities.

      These existential threats and opportunities have been facilitated and acted upon as functions of perceived needs and opportunities.

      The targets and modes of activation of these perceived needs and opportunities have varied according to perceived needs and opportunities, sometimes using the tactics of “hot wars” and sometimes using the tactics of “cold wars”.

      Some in the misrepresentation “United States of America” have correctly perceived others as existential threats and opportunities to/for them given their socio-economic system and its perceived requirements – the functions of the “other” being multi-various – the definition of the “others” include but are not necessarily restricted to those of difference within and without the “United States of America”.

      Some in the Soviet Union in the early 1970’s attempted to conflate “strategy” with “tactics” and decided to forget notions of existential threat and perceive only existential opportunity through conflation, thereby facilitating detente on the basis of spheres of influence.

      War is not restricted to things that go bang but restricted to forms of coercion.

      The misrepresentation “cold war”, which was never cold but sometimes engaged through proxies, was/is a context specific tactic.

      Some are of the view that the ends justify the means instead of understanding that means condition ends, and consequently some facilitate and rely upon increasing the conflation of strategy with tactics increasing the sum, motivations, and resolve of the “others”, thereby conditioning strategy through accelerating, continuing and expanding existential threats.

      Those who engage in such self-delusion were not/are not restricted to the misrepresentation “United States of America” but as Thucydides and others were aware, have been/are generally restricted to those who perceive others as existential opportunities and threats.

      Some others correctly assess the misrepresentation “United States of America” to be more a land of opportunity than an existential threat.

    • Litchfield
      August 14, 2018 at 7:48 am

      I agree with your comment.
      A good precis.
      And the “Putin is a *thug*” meme has been successfully promulgated as shorthand that acts as a justification for anything done or said against both Putin and Russia.
      Meanwhile, the thugs are those in our Congress and executive branch and such as Mueller, who are pushing the country beyond its tolerance levels or, shall we say, ability to right itself after a knockdown (maritime metaphor is intended).

    • Skip Scott
      August 14, 2018 at 11:47 am

      jaycee-

      I think the rollout of the new cold war actually began when Putin stopped the looting of his country that was occurring under Yeltsin. The evil empire only accepts vassals, not partners. Maximum capital must accrue to the one percent, and be free to flee the country to the tax haven of choice. Any world leader who tries to build an economy for the benefit of its nation’s citizens becomes a target.

      • Aime Duclos
        August 14, 2018 at 1:50 pm

        Yes, Skip, when the West’s pillaging and looting of Putin’s country was stopped, the one percent was not amused. Add to that NATO’s constant march up to Russia’s borders, the threat to and actual placement of “defensive” missles on Russia’s border.
        The last straw was the US orchestrated coup in it’s next NATO prize for acquisition Ukraine. Putin reacted as any leader would, and with restraint I might add.
        Yet somehow all this proves Putin is a thug?
        It’s been a calculated drive to this new Cold War. The MIC is having it’s way.

    • GM
      August 14, 2018 at 6:12 pm

      I figure it was the Magnistaky ruse that got the ball rolling. It predates Ukraine and was grounds for the first round of sanctions.

  54. Maxwell Quest
    August 13, 2018 at 9:38 pm

    Excellent article! I was particularly jolted by the reference that the Russia-gate narrative has become “too big to fail.” So true! The ruling establishment has pushed all their chips onto the table in a do-or-die effort to make this allegation stick. They have passed the point of no return; there is no walking it back now. If it fails heads will roll, but most importantly these trusted institutions will have flushed their last vestiges of credibility down the drain. Then what?

    • David G
      August 14, 2018 at 2:45 am

      Or, as Patrick Lawrence puts it: “The risk of self-inflicted damage these institutions assume, should the truth of the Russia-gate events emerge—as one day it surely will—is nearly incalculable.”

      However, I disagree with both Mr. Lawrence and you, Maxwell Quest. I think that assessment is actually too optimistic.

      How many times has the U.S. “national security” establishment brazenly deceived the country and the world, at incalculable cost, without being held to account in a way that seriously discomfited the perpetrators?

      From the bomber gap, to the missile gap, through Vietnam from beginning to end, to Iran-Contra, to Iraqi WMDs, and so much more.

      It’s hard to see Russia-gate collapsing in a way that would force its architects and proponents to acknowledge its fictitiousness: it is too much of an irrational miasma to actually be falsifiable in the sort of concrete way that led to even such perfunctory admissions of error as we got when Saddam’s “WMDs” failed to exist.

      But even if that somehow does happen, and the whole Beltway official and media establishment has to suck it up and emit a feeble “my bad” about Russia-gate, what makes you think it will have any lasting consequences in terms of the dispensation of power and privilege among the U.S. elites?

      Bush Jr. was able to make a White House Correspondents Dinner joke about those derned elusive WMDs – and get laughs – *one year* after the invasion of Iraq. Why would this time be any different?

      • AnthraxSleuth
        August 14, 2018 at 4:07 am

        “Bush Jr. was able to make a White House Correspondents Dinner joke about those derned elusive WMDs – and get laughs” – *one year* after the invasion of Iraq. Why would this time be any different?

        Yup, got lots of laughs from his fellow members of the club that were coconspirators.
        Had he tried that joke around veterans and the families of casualties of that whole criminal adventure I doubt he would have made it out alive.

        • Tom Welsh
          August 14, 2018 at 8:57 am

          Had he tried that joke around any of the millions of victims of his criminal aggression or their familes and friends, I am sure he would not have made it out alive.

          But if you have ever managed to think yourself into the criminal mind, you will understand that it is precisely the fact that he was NOT subject to any comeback that made the whole thing such fun.

          People often wonder why psychopathic sadists enjoy torturing their victims, when presumably they have enough cognitive empathy to appreciate how terrible the suffering is.

          But that is WHY the sadists enjoy their activities so much. What they do to their victims is so unendurable, yet someone is having to endure it – and that somebody is not the perpetrator.

          • AnthraxSleuth
            August 15, 2018 at 4:51 am

            I’ve never tried to think myself into the criminal mind.
            And, I thank you for the insight.

            I have had someone try to kill me.
            Someone that has killed at least one person before by his own admission.

            It changes you forever.

    • Anne Jaclard
      August 14, 2018 at 10:33 am

      Agreed. The American corporate press has been running what are essentially press releases and “dossiers” of evidence for a year now, mostly from shady private firms (Twitter trolls “discovered” by Graphika, Fusion GPS’s “Dirty Dossier,” CrowdStrike’s initial investigation of the DNC). Many of these firms aren’t neutral parties either, head of CrowdStrike is rabidly anti-Russia and just put together another package of “research” that was debunked on Ukraine. It’s hard to know if the American people will ever see a full explanation of this, Church Committee or FOIA style, given that these are companies with no public obligations….not good.

  55. Joe Tedesky
    August 13, 2018 at 8:59 pm

    Russia Gate has given us one thing for sure, and that it is now ravishing the internet of all of its corporate controlled First Amendment Rights. Just like the establishment of long TSA lines pushing us travelers through airport security like inspected cattle, was an example of 911 reforms to our system, this Russia Gate Investingation and all its trappings are doing the same destruction to our liberties. What memories of a free and liberal society have we all seen swirl ever so slowly, but deliberately down the memory hole of our once civil liberties? The erosion of the American society is on track, and its stay the course until this corporate owned government cannot govern no more.

    In a real rule of law world Jeff Sessions would take all this evidence the VIPS have produced and present it into the Mueller Investigation as just that evidence, or proof of lack there of.

    Good to hear Patrick Lawrence get down with it, that’s what we need more of. At the rate the internet is going, say it now, or forever hold your peace, is now in force.

    • Joe Tedesky
      August 13, 2018 at 10:26 pm

      Here is a link to something that at first seems a little unrelated, but after reading it ask yourself, is it? Moon Jae in of S Korea may just have the answer for the way of dealing with past government malpractices.

      https://journal-neo.org/2018/08/13/military-plot-in-south-korea-mayhem-in-defense-intelligence-agency/

      Hey want to drain the swamp? call Moon Jae in ASAP.

      • Litchfield
        August 14, 2018 at 7:53 am

        For a possibly useful parsing of what is actually going in the Mueller investigation,
        check out:
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nEt4kwAvNqU

        The delivery is a bit inelegant, but the main takeaway is that the Mueller investigation is meant to hide what really went down between the Dems and the Russians.

    • Joe Tedesky
      August 13, 2018 at 11:06 pm

      Here you can read to how far the U.S. is willing to go with nothing but allegations.

      http://www.unz.com/akarlin/russia-sanctions/

      This insanity has to end.

    • Joe Tedesky
      August 13, 2018 at 11:27 pm

      I can’t help myself, you need to read Caitlin Johnston’s take on how it’s okay to run with scissors in your hand…. just brilliant.

      http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/50024.htm

    • Dave P.
      August 14, 2018 at 1:29 am

      Excellent observations, Joe. I hope this – Russia gate – does not lead to a much more dangerous zone as it appears to be heading to with these sanctions against Russia slated to go into effect in November. There was this rather very disquieting article the other day in Strategic Culture by Finnian Cunningham.

      https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/08/11/us-sanctions-pushing-russia-war.html

      As you said this insanity must end or else. . .

    • Ed
      August 14, 2018 at 6:27 am

      “In a real rule of law world Jeff Sessions would take all this evidence the VIPS have produced and present it into the Mueller Investigation as just that evidence, or proof of lack there of. ”

      In a real rule of law world Jeff Sessions would probably been fired for prosecutorial misconduct early on in his career and would never have been elected senator. As it stands in the US, such venal people as Sessions are rewarded for their misconduct as prosecutors with elected office. In Sessions’ case, he was further rewarded with appointment to the position of Attorney General, when he shouldn’t be an attorney at all.

      • Tom Welsh
        August 14, 2018 at 9:00 am

        The USA is said to be a “rule of law” nation.

        Of course that is an outrageous lie.

        The USA is a “rule of money” nation. Money trumps everything, including law.

  56. Jeff Harrison
    August 13, 2018 at 8:51 pm

    Well, Patrick, I”m glad to see that you’re writing for a reputable organization for a change. I don’t have a hell of a lot to add to what you’ve said but I’ll say this. I saw an article about the DefCon in Las Vegas this AM or yesterday. I don’t remember where and I can’t find it again but the gist of it is – they had like 39 kid volunteers who they told to go hack the election systems in some number of “battleground” states. The upshot? 35 of the 39 kids successfully hacked several election systems. The champ was an 11 yo girl who broke in in 10 minutes. If our election systems are so poorly designed that kids can break into them in just a few minutes, I’m sure it’s just a walk in the park for an actual pro.

    • Jeff Harrison
      August 13, 2018 at 10:45 pm

      Hah! I found it. It was on RT, of course. Here’s the link -https://www.rt.com/usa/435824-us-midterms-hacking-children/

  57. August 13, 2018 at 8:29 pm

    Good comments to this very good article. I agree with Gary that the US is in decline, perhaps terminal, and that rising Eurasia led by China and Russia is the reason for the Deep State’s frantic need to try to focus the people on Russia, and now the biggie, China, to avoid the reality of the social decay within from not addressing the people’s needs for well over 30 years. However, i also don’t think as many Americans are swallowing this lie as MSM and politicos would have us believe. What we now call the “alt-left”, perhaps, may take it seriously. It was Mme Clinton herself who is at the top of chain of this manufactured story.

    But I don’t think we’ll see this fixation around for the next 20-30 years, as Mr. Lawrence speculates, because I don’t think we’ll have that much time for such political nonsense as we are confronted by massive Earth changes, not all human-caused, that are now manifesting.

  58. Tom Kath
    August 13, 2018 at 8:28 pm

    The correction of “illusions” often has the appearance of being too horrendous to contemplate. Be it the delusion that we can get wealthy on debt, or the delusion that we are invincible. These are all able to be traced back to a fundamental belief which has long been proven to be inconsistent with reality.

  59. mike k
    August 13, 2018 at 7:29 pm

    How did we get here? The stupefication of the American people was well advanced before the pilgrims landed. The idea that this continent only really began when we “discovered” it was the beginning of our idiocy. That this land was waiting for the blessing of our special role in “civilizing’ it was a continuation of our delusional thinking.

  60. Ian Brown
    August 13, 2018 at 7:20 pm

    In philosophy there is a concept called Teleology which means to view things “by the purpose they serve rather than by postulated causes”. If we are to look at Russiagate from a teleological perspective, and indeed we should, as the evidentiary and proportional justification is severely lacking, we see a distinct organism with a broad purpose. So let’s examine, what purposes are being served by Russiagate, what agendas being driven, and interests being advanced?

    1. Control of information by imperial, establishment and corporate interests
    2. Control of discourse and dissent being stigmatized
    3. Restriction of democracy by third parties and anti-establishment candidates being smeared as “Kremlin supported’
    4. The enlargement of the military industrial complex
    5. The ideological alignment of the nominal left and center with authoritarianism
    6. The justification of imperialism and aggressive foreign policy
    7. The deflection from widespread issues of discontent
    8. The projection of issues in the 2016 election, particularly primary rigging, voting irregularities, voter suppression, candidate funded troll operations like Correct the Record, widespread collusion between candidates and the mainstream media, and outsized influence of Israeli, Saudi and Ukrainian lobbies

    Considering how much of an impact Russiagate has had towards these ends, in comparison how meagerly it has tackled these phantom Russian meddlers and “active measures”, I think it’s fair to say that Russiagate has NOTHING to do with it’s stated cause. If Russiagate can be described by what it does, and not what allegedly caused it, what it is is an authoritarian push to broadly increase control of society by establishment elites, and to advance their imperialistic ambitions. In this way, it does not look dissimilar to the way previous societies have succumbed to authoritarian and imperialist rule, nor do the flavors of propaganda, censorship and nationalism differ greatly. The 2016 election represented the ruling Establishment losing control of the narrative, and to a lesser degree, not getting their preferred candidate. And in response the velvet glove is slipping.

    • mike k
      August 13, 2018 at 7:33 pm

      Excellent analysis!

    • Dunderhead
      August 13, 2018 at 9:12 pm

      You nailed that one man, Kudos

    • Maxwell Quest
      August 13, 2018 at 9:32 pm

      9. The delegitimization of Trump’s presidency, and a false justification for removing him from office, or in the very least crippling his ability to function as the executive.

    • August 14, 2018 at 2:52 pm

      Ian Brown ~

      Indeed. The Shit Snowball keeps gaining size and momentum because so many groups get various benefits from propagating the Russiagate narrative.

      I xeroxed your list of 8 – as well as an excerpt from Patrick Lawrence’s original article – then added references and artwork to set it off in a classy way.

      Please let me know what the two of you think of the results:

      Russiagate: Too Big to Fail

    • exiled off mainstreet
      August 15, 2018 at 3:00 am

      This analysis is spot on.

  61. Kevin Huxford
    August 13, 2018 at 7:18 pm

    Duncan Campbell’s article is embarrassing, especially in that it took him so long to even slightly correct his misrepresentation of Binney’s position on the matter.

  62. Dunderhead
    August 13, 2018 at 7:00 pm

    This article touches on such a fundamental truth which is the new paradigm of US disunity, the fracturing of both US political parties and a greater General dysfunction of the American body politic not to mention the US’s Image of itself.

  63. August 13, 2018 at 6:41 pm

    A truly excellent and very important post! Thank you.

    “To doubt the hollowed-out myth of American innocence is a grave sin against the faith.” – author

    Absolutely! The current “Russiagate” lunacy renders anyone a “heretic” who might engage in such “doubt”
    – or who engages in any independent critical thinking on this matter. I’ve never seen the political class, the deep state psychopaths, and the MSM more irrational, nor more out of touch with and more contemptuous of – simple basic verifiable physical “reality” – than at this historical moment. The current state of affairs suggests the American empire may not simply be in decline, but is instead perhaps in free fall with the hard ground of reality rapidly approaching. The current level of absolute public lunacy also suggests the landing will be neither graceful nor pleasant, and may actually come as a shock to the true believers.

  64. August 13, 2018 at 5:42 pm

    Terrific article, Patrick Lawrence. Too Big Too Fail is exactly correct. Just as the banks in the 2008 mortgage crisis got bailed out, so the Russiagate narrative is cultivated by the US government. Both are insults to the American people.

    As you know, there has been some recent discussion of this leak vs. hack topic. To wit:

    There is a response by William Binney in video form at the end of this article:

    How to Understand this Russian Hacking Thing

    To a recent challenge of the VIPS “leak” evidence presented in this article in Computer Weekly:

    Duncan Campbell alleges Bill Binney changes mind about the leak

    • Skip Scott
      August 14, 2018 at 3:39 pm

      Thanks for the links. Very informative.

Comments are closed.