PATRICK LAWRENCE: The ‘See-No-Evil’ Phase of Russiagate

The media spinfest following the collapse of this conspiracy theory suggests our troubled republic simply cannot accept its errors, leaving us unable to learn from them.

(Dion Hinchcliffe, Flickr)

By Patrick Lawrence
Special to Consortium News

The long, destructive conspiracy theory known as Russiagate, the mother of them all, at last evaporates into thin air. No shred of it remains as of back-to-back disclosures over the past couple of weeks. Where does this leave us? What is to come of this momentous turn of events?

Among those not inclined toward hysteria or copious quaffs of Democratic Party Kool–Aid, it has long been a question how those who concocted and sustained the tales of Russian “meddling,” “collusion,” and mail hackery would manage their embarrassment — not to mention their potential legal liabilities — once their edifice-built-on-sand collapsed, as it was destined from the first to do.

The early signs are as some predicted: They will slither quietly off the stage without comment, they will deny their incessant, ever-vehement accusations, they will profess to weariness, they will insist there are more important things to think about now.

Here is a tweet from one Bob F published Saturday. Our Bob touches nearly all of the above-noted bases. His mentions of Matt Taibbi, Aaron Maté, and Jimmy Dore reference two journalists and a talk-show host who identified the fraud from the first and had the scruples not to surrender to the liberal totalitarianism we have suffered these past three years: 

Yes, Bob, lets. This is a brilliant specimen of the flaccid cowardice we’re now to witness many times over. Reassuringly enough, a modest twitter storm followed. Here is a reply from Kathy Woods, a consistently insightful commentator in Twitterland:

For good measure, here is another response to Big Bob, this one addressing his implicit assertion of Democratic Party virtue in the Age of Trump:   

There is anger abroad as Russiagate finally unwinds, plainly. This is an excellent thing. And Ms. Woods is right: It is important to make the sun shine on what became, before the end, a scandal of historic proportions. There is a chance of achieving the “complete exposure” Woods asks for, but it remains a question, as of now, whether this will come to pass.  

>>Please Donate to CNs’ 25th Anniversary Spring Fund Drive<<

Two weeks ago the Justice Department made public documents showing that when, in January 2017, prosecutors wanted to close the collusion case against Michael Flynn, who briefly served as President Donald Trump’s national security advisor, because they found “no derogatory information” against him, Peter Strzok, the philandering F.B.I. agent later found to be shaping an “insurance policy” against a Trump victory in the 2016 election, cajoled them into keeping it open — absence of evidence be damned.

Two Other Developments

Adam Schiff. (DonkeyHotey caricature via Flickr)

The Strzok revelations turned out to be prelude to the two other developments further demolishing the Russiagate narrative. Last Thursday Justice finally dropped its case against Flynn altogether. We now know he was the victim of a perjury trap when questioned about his contacts with Sergey Kislyak, Moscow’s ambassador to Washington in 2016. “Get him to lie so we can prosecute him,” was the FBI’s directive.

Yet worse, Flynn’s guilty plea was in response to prosecutors’ threats to indict his son if he pled otherwise. Tell me the difference, please, between this kind of stuff and the treatment of the accused in the postwar show trials in Eastern Europe.

On the same day the Justice Department dropped the charges against Flynn, the House Intelligence Committee released documents showing that the FBI had no evidence that Russia pilfered the Democratic National Committee’s email archives by hacking into its servers in mid–2016. The FBI had none because CrowdStrike, the patently corrupt cyber-security firm on which it (inexplicably) relied, never gave it any: It had none, either — contrary to its many claims otherwise.

The taker of cake here is that the documents also show that the House Intelligence Committee, chaired by the inimitable (thank goodness) Adam Schiff, knew there were no grounds to allege Russian involvement in what wasn’t a hack by anyone, but a leak, probably by someone with direct access to the DNC’s servers.

My Consortium News colleague Ray McGovern has just detailed the collapse of the “Russians-hacked-it” ruse.

No evidence anywhere along the line of collusion, none of Russians stealing mail. There is a simpler way to put this: No Russiagate.

In truth, there has been evidence aplenty of the Russiagate fraud for some time, due in part to the researches of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, VIPS, of which McGovern is a principal. The problem has been to secure official acknowledgement of three years’ worth of wrongdoing. We now have it, even if it arrives with no admission whatsoever of responsibility.

Enter Perception Management 


Now come the lies, the dissembling, and the media’s “perception management.”  Tucker Carlson, the Fox News presenter, offered a funny-but-not-funny catalog of the liars who now stand exposed, none more thoroughly than the egregious Schiff, who ought to resign over this, and Evelyn Farkas, another Obama-era holdover with absolutely no regard for the truth. Loretta Lynch, Obama’s A–G, will also have things to answer for, assuming answers for her misconduct are required of her.

Among the press and broadcasters, it has been a spinfest this past week — led, naturally, by The New York Times, given no one in the media dares venture a syllable for which the Times has not signaled prior approval. The paper’s report on the dismissal of the Flynn case marked the judgment down as “the latest example of Attorney General William P. Barr’s efforts to chisel away at the results of the Russia investigation.” I lost count of the mentions of Flynn’s “lying” and “guilty plea” after nine. No reference to the perjury trap set for Flynn, or the threat to indict his son.

The Times ran two further pieces hatcheting Flynn and Barr in Saturday’s editions, here and here, and a straight-out character assassination of Flynn on Sunday, casting him as some kind of pathological split personality. The Gray Lady doth protest too much, in my view.

The press vastly over-invested in the Russiagate narrative from the first, and now appears set to throw yet more money after all the bad. This is not a good sign. It suggests that our troubled republic simply cannot accept its errors, leaving us unable to learn from them. This is why America in its post-democratic phase cannot self-correct. It is why we have no assurance that another Russiagate, in whatever form, will not be visited upon us.

“Attorney General William P. Barr’s efforts to chisel away at the results of the Russia investigation”? Absolutely. We have to hope he gets somewhere. Committed Russiagaters now take to charging that Barr is corrupting an otherwise snow-white Justice Department. Say what? Given all we now know, this starts to tip into the zone of black humor.

Barr and his investigators are fully armed as of last week. They have all they need to get to the bottom of this dark ocean. They have it in their power to bring to justice the three architects of the Russiagate scam when it was in motion — ex–C.I.A. Director John Brennan, ex–Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, ex–F.B.I. Director James Comey — for what amounted to an attempt to depose a president in a bloodless coup. These are the Democratic Party’s answer to former President Richard Nixon’s infamous “plumbers,” if you ask me.

Whether Barr and his investigators get the task done is to a great extent a matter of politics and bureaucratic warfare that will at best be partially visible to us in coming months. It is a question of how far he will be permitted to go.

Succeed or fail, the record is at least and at last straight.

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 on Twitter @thefloutistHis web site is Patrick Lawrence. Support his work via his Patreon site. 

The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.

If you value this original article, please  donate  to CN’s 25th Anniversary Spring Fund Drive.

45 comments for “PATRICK LAWRENCE: The ‘See-No-Evil’ Phase of Russiagate

  1. May 15, 2020 at 19:59

    Wow! In the end I got a website from where I can in fact take useful data regarding my
    study and knowledge.

  2. Zhu
    May 15, 2020 at 01:43

    I never understood why any rational person credited either Russiagate or Birthergate ten minutes of credence. Both are obvious fantasy fiction.

  3. robert e williamson jr
    May 14, 2020 at 22:53

    For the edification of everyone commenting here I have a request that each of you keep and open mind for a while longer and avoid developing tunnel vision for a while longer, hang on to your beliefs and expand them some.

    Knowing what I know about the Clinton’s history and connections I figure the intelligence community was all in for Hilary and I think it got them into trouble. The original “sin” is never as complicated as the ensuing cover – up, The first sin may be more egregious but many times mistakes are simply mistakes. It’s when the bodies start turning up that things get very complicated.

    I’ve been around a while and I know it shows, however all of these supposedly really smart people, DNC, the Clintons, FBI, NSA and the RNC have themselves tied in to knots right now. WHY?

    At Jefferson Morley’s Deep State Blog see this deepstateblog (dot) org/2020/05/04/in-deep-the-history-behind-trumps-war-on-the-intelligence-community/

    Author David Rohde has written a book about Trump’s war with the intell community, if this link fails go to the Deep State Blog and select Must Reads you will find the story there.

    Given the level of interest and knowledge several individuals commenting here display I think this will be worth everyone’s time.

    In closing beware of false prophets bearing gifts my friends, those wise men from FBI, CIA, NSA, DOJ, and William P. Barr included.

    Thanks Pat and everyone at CN.

  4. Brad Smith
    May 14, 2020 at 17:38

    Sadly Russiagate will never end. The majority of the people who believed it, will continue to believe, simply because they want to. They see zero benefit in reading or hearing from any source that tells them it’s not true, so they will avoid any form of media that tells them otherwise. If forced, clockwork orange style, to take in the info, they will simply find a justification for why it happened and why it’s a shame it didn’t succeed. Most people, like it or not, embrace the idea of the ends justifying the means. They will first deny it happened this way, then if forced to admit it happened at all, they will immediately agree that Obama was 100% justified and that Trump is still hiding something that has yet to be found.

    Out of a hundred Obama fans, I doubt that more than one of them will think less of Obama because of any of these revelations. If anything they will think more highly of him for fighting this hard to rid them of the Orange Gollum.

  5. Lois Madison
    May 14, 2020 at 08:24

    So sorry. I got sidetracked. I came here from Zero Hedge because I so much enjoyed the article. I generally scroll fast to he bottom of an article, scroll a little slower up and see if there’s anything to pick out, without my being too annoyed over what is seeming more and more like the vanishing of the participle. It’s a pleasure to read an article I should have started reading from the top.

  6. Lois Madison
    May 14, 2020 at 08:19

    And now Merkel has been shown and has credited hard evidence of Russian hacking of her emails. Never mind the coincidence. Is it time to ask what the US representative at crucial negotiations on the survival of the economy-crucial German automaker, Opel, was hearing when he kept leaving for phone calls? Later, seemingly hard evidence emerged of the CIA’s listening to Merkel’s phone conversations. If a question were to be asked now of these events, it might not be whether we should deliberate the worthiness of GM, which maintained control of Opel patents that presumably went into the production line that for a short while resuscitated them, despite their not improving management policies. It might be whether any sort of -gate opens onto phenomena like Bilderberg vs. OBOR. Walking away, if that’s all we can do but what we do achieve, places the former in a corner.

  7. E Wright
    May 12, 2020 at 19:35

    Any reasonable thinker could see from the beginning that Russiagate was a deflection from what the Democrats had been up to. Any they appear to have gotten away with it.

  8. DW Bartoo
    May 12, 2020 at 19:31

    Yes, mary connick, you may make use of my words in any fashion which you consider might encourage both critical thought and healthy skepticism in the face of farcical nonsense, especially narratives such as Russiagate, the purpose of which was to blame Russia both for Hillary Clinton’s loss and for all U$ian problems, from Trump, to trying to convince U$ians that racism remains rife in this society because, had Russia not pointed that out, it would not even be a problem.

    One can easily imagine that Chinagate will postulate that China stole all those jobs (ignoring the central role corporations and tax benefits extended TO those corporations by the government, played in that much celebrated “off-shoring”), deliberately released the novel coronavirus on the innocent, just, morally upright, and indispensable U$ (thus rendering our government incapable of any seriously considered response, beyond massively “bailing out” the wealthy and global corporations), misleading many to somehow believe that the U$ health “care” system ( “the best in the world”) might have a few small failings, and worse, it is “very likely, that this crisis, as it morphs into economic Armageddon, again all the fault of China, could very well have the appalling result of insinuating a conviction in the minds of the many, that the last forty plus years of neoliberalism, austerity, and precarity are clear evidence of a class war, waged by the increasingly wealthy few (remembering the “bailout” of twelve years ago) against the increasingly impoverished many (which would blow the longstanding myth of this as a “classless” society, to kingdom come).

    Naturally, Chinagate will be built on a bipartisan foundation just as solid and honest as has been Russiagate.

    Predictably, many U$ians may be expected to believe the idiotic nonsense, both out of habit and because U$ian mythology demands it.

    As a Christian nation, based on the Puritan Ethic, and trusting as our coinage proclaims, that Gawd is always “on our side”, it is very likely, in the daze ahead, that those of a specific certainty, may well suggest that, were Jesus a country, then he would be us.

    While some may think that is going too far, it is fairly common for nations whose people imagine that THEY are Gawd’s chosen to engage in behavior and assumptions that are well over the top.

    History, fluid prejudice that it is, is replete with cautionary example.

    Amazingly, hubris ignores history, humanity, and honesty.

    Far too often, the road to Hades is not paved with good intentions, rather it is engineered to facilitate ambition, acquisition, domination, limitless wealth (even in a finite world) and total control of others and even of old Mother Nature, herself.

    Father Time may well shake his hoary old head, but the Grim Reaper waits on no one.

    Even those who die with the most toys.

    Such “winning” as is worshiped by the elites who create these gated narratives, means nothing and, in the end, reveals empty beings and pathetic understandings.

    The most amazing thing is that, after ten thousand years of the pretense of “civilization”, the many still patiently tolerate such insanity and murderous greed.

    Just imagine what humankind could become and understand were we to dare build a sane, humane, and sustainable global society?

    Absent such a society, what need has this planet of such featherless bipeds as are we?

    (We need the planet. It has no need of us.)

    Should that seem heartless and cruel, let us consider how we came to share our common and perhaps fatal plight?

    Could it be that that our real failing is, and long has been, that we will “not see”?

    (And neither will we feel, because then we might discover that “human nature” is not oppression and dominance, but is cooperation and empathy.)

    Not see.

    Not feel.

    Learning nothing.

    Standing numbly by as extinction stalks, frozen in fear of actually being human, yet possibly coming to treasuring existence and realizing that we live in what truly is paradise, which we have failed to care for or about.

    Perhaps, every empire chooses to “not see”?

    Perhaps, only whole and healthy human beings can do that?

    Perhaps, sentience is experienced beyond the human, by all creatures that exist, perhaps we are not alone, but owe a reverance to all of existence?

    Perhaps, we exist only because everything else permits and makes possible our existence?

    What if our real “job”, “task”, or worthwhile “endeavor”, IS to see and to feel, to understand, and to care?

    Imagine that.

  9. David Anderson
    May 12, 2020 at 17:24

    That’s kind harsh on the Plumbers, comparing this crew to them. At least they weren’t government officials at the time. They were just plain old crooks.

  10. Pablo Diablo
    May 12, 2020 at 16:19

    Russiagate was merely a distraction from what was in the emails. Seems Hillary had done a lot of “nasty” things. Assange said from the beginning that Russia HAD NOT hacked the emails, that it was a leak. Seems the Democrats just could not accept that “the most qualified candidate in history” lost to “the worst candidate in history” Hillary’s whole platform in 2016 was “I’m not Donald Trump” and I have a vagina”. Her Libya and Honduras were enough for me to write in Bernie. We came. we saw, she lost.

    • michael888
      May 14, 2020 at 08:11

      As Chris Hedges noted during the failed Impeachment of Trump: “Why didn’t they impeach Barack Obama when he expanded these illegal wars to 11, if we count Yemen? Why didn’t they impeach Obama when Edward Snowden revealed that our intelligence agencies are monitoring and spying on almost every citizen and downloading our data and metrics into government computers where they will be stored for perpetuity? Why didn’t they impeach Obama when he misused the 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force to erase due process and give the executive branch of government the right to act as judge, jury and executioner in assassinating U.S. citizens, starting with the radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and, two weeks later, his 16-year-old son? Why didn’t they impeach Obama when he signed into law Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act, in effect overturning the 1878 Posse Comitatus Act, which prohibits the use of the military as a domestic police force?”
      It was bad enough turning idiot Trump loose with the Police State Bush/ Cheney created and Obama expanded (politicizing the FBI and CIA in the process, his own Flying Monkey Corps). Giving such a Fascist system to someone as obviously a competent psychopath as Hillary might have been the end of civilization.

  11. May 12, 2020 at 15:50

    As matters stand, many people may assume that Crowdstrike has honestly concluded (whether rightly or wrongly) that Russian intelligence hacked the DNC. But the creation of the overtly fraudulent character Guccifer 2.0 shows that they, or someone affiliated with them, was knowingly perpetrating a scam to blame “Russia” for the Wikileaks DNC releases. Which leaves in doubt whether Crowdstrike truly thinks that “Russia” hacked the DNC servers – or whether they may have fabricated evidence of such a hack. Since much evidence points to a leaker as the source of the Wikileaks DNC releases – quite plausibly Seth Rich – it would be a bit too much of a coincidence if Seth was leaking from the DNC at just about the same time that Russian intelligence was hacking it. My guess is that US intelligence, monitoring Wikileaks, had tipped off the DNC that their emails were about to be leaked, and that DNC then brought in Crowdstrike to fake a Russian hack, so that the impending release could be blamed on Russia. Guccifer 2.0 was then created to sustain this narrative. But the actual leaker then had to be eliminated to prevent their hoax from being debunked.

    If Crowdstrike’s only “evidence” for a hack by Russian intelligence is the “Fancy Bear” malware that was used, this is false logic, as it is known that Ukrainian hackers – in league with the Atlantic Council – also have access to this malware. Further, cyberanalyst Stephen McIntyre has concluded that some of the malware implanted on the DNC servers was compiled a few days AFTER Crowdstrike was brought in to investigate the alleged hack. Maybe this is why, when Trump called Zelensky, his mention of Crowdstrike and the DNC server pricked up a lot of Deep State ears.

    • Skip Scott
      May 13, 2020 at 08:34


      Thank you for your investigations on this issue. I’m pretty sure at this point that you’ve gotten the sequence of events nailed down perfectly. Wouldn’t it be grand if we lived by the “rule of law” and those responsible were prosecuted and brought to justice? And wouldn’t it be grand if we had an MSM to report the prosecutions honestly?

  12. Michael Weddington
    May 12, 2020 at 12:55

    Nothing to see here. Move along. Memory is so over.

    • Rob
      May 12, 2020 at 16:35

      We must remember the lessons of Russiagate, as they will almost certainly apply to Chinagate and other “—gates” to come.

  13. Gregory Kruse
    May 12, 2020 at 12:36

    I’ve been reading about Russiagate for a few years now in this site, and I just see it as the only slender reed the Dems had to hold onto as the Obama/Clinton era came to a close. No mention in this article of the utter panic felt in the halls at the prospect of a Trump presidency. Some journalists like to present themselves as better able to run the empire than the politicians. Had I inherited the DNC worldview while at the same time had to accept a Republican administration led by Trump and a Republican Senate led by McConnell, I would have been grasping too. Of course the fact is that we have that now in spite of all the desperate attempts to prevent it, so their reed broke off. Oh, well. Time covers up all desperate attempts to survive in this world. As Bill Barr recently and rashly said, “Well, the winners write the history, so…” What he said after that doesn’t matter. “Fair” to him is whatever benefits Donald Trump. Maybe that’s not fair. Maybe the Trump presidency is what it claims to be, and maybe Trump is the smartest and best human that has ever lived. Maybe it is even worse than any that has come before.

    • suddyan
      May 14, 2020 at 09:35

      [As Bill Barr recently and rashly said, “Well, the winners write the history, so…” What he said after that doesn’t matter. ]

      Absolute balderdash. What he said after that is fully part and parcel of what he intended to say.

      And in that intention he underlined his commitment to the rule of law.

      [“Fair” to him is whatever benefits Donald Trump.]

      And clearly “fair” to you is a sickeningly deceitful, deliberate misrepresentation of the full truth

      Frankly sir (and I use that word with reservation), have you no shame at all?

      PS. I have read Consortium News for years. I never really had any intention to comment. But after reading such a disgustingly, deliberate perversion of truth, I fear for the moral character of humanity. I cannot let such sickening misrepresentation go unchallenged. I refuse to let such a person accord themselves any false semblance that they are anyhow honest or decent. And if it prides itself on integrity, neither should Consortium News.

  14. May 12, 2020 at 11:53

    Good Plan. Bad Execution.
    Patrick Greg Olear wrote to you today.

  15. May 12, 2020 at 11:33

    Good plan. Failed execution.

  16. AnneR
    May 12, 2020 at 11:15

    Thank you Mr Lawrence for highlighting the MSM really existing response to these revelations: “I lost count of the mentions of Flynn’s “lying” and “guilty plea” after nine. No reference to the perjury trap set for Flynn, or the threat to indict his son.”

    The only MSM source in this household is NPR to which I (used to be we) I tune in that I might know what lies, distortions, omissions and verbal sleight of hand regarding anything really, actually happening in the world (without such as CN we’d be suspicious but in the dark without a candle’s hope of learning the truth). NPR has – as you indicate for such as the NYT – emphasized over and over (*when* it reported on this last week) Flynn’s copping to “lying,” to his “guilty plea – but not once, not even in a whisper, was mention made of the revealed evidence that brought about the dropping of the charges, and definitely not any hint that the FBI had forced Flynn to lie by threatening to charge his son for some “crime” or another. Nope. Nowt to see here; move along.

    The so-called progs and the blue faces will *not* let Russophobia go. The Clintons own the DNC – and HRC was a Goldwater, Cold War enthusiast from birth to the present. The rest of the most influential blue faces are all equally Cold Warriors. No chance of ridding their supporters of “Russia did it.”

  17. rosemerry
    May 12, 2020 at 10:48

    Right from the election of Trump, and Obama shamefully expelling Russian diplomats and stealing their US property during his “lame duck” weeks, this whole business has been to push our attention from real issues.The Dems and also the Trump got fully involved and acted in a similar way during the year-long concocted fraud of the Skripal poisoning in the UK, with the Julian Assange-bashing “journalists” Luke Harding and David Leigh fantasizing in the NYT as well as UK papers about the evil Russkies. Even now we have Facebook banning the iconic photo of the USSR soldier raising the flag of the Reichstag to show the end of WW2, as Trump insisted the USA actually won WW2. Lies go on.

  18. May 12, 2020 at 10:42

    This read is too American in language and direction. Would that you could move to target the rest of the world to make it easier for us to understand.

  19. DW Bartoo
    May 12, 2020 at 10:16

    Our society has long been a “not see” confection.

    From the moment Europeans arrived on these shores, many of them viewed this continent simply as a source of wealth, indeed all of what would be called the Americas, were viewed by Europeans, from monarchs to the common folk, as exploitable lands and peoples.

    To this very day, “we”, of European heritage, choose to “not see” the hubris of our ancestors in assuming that God had given them a covenant to do with these lands and the peoples who inhabited these lands, whatever the Europeans, with their superior weaponry and no hesitation about using it, choose or wanted to do to both lands and human beings.

    Of course, far too many of these Europeans choose to “not see” the people here as fellow human beings, but rather as “savages”, as godless heathens and an affront to God, by the sheer reality of their existence.

    Europeans, when African human beings were kidnapped and brought to these shores to become the initial “engine” of wealth creation for their masters, had no trouble convincing themselves that such beings were not human and even wrote laws specifically proclaiming this to be irrefutable fact.

    Such beings were “property”, not “human” beings.

    The “dominating” European class, and their lower class European fellows, could “not see”, and were instructed that they should “not see” slaves or “natives” as human beings or, in any way, worthy of that status or any presumption of being “equal” to their “betters”.

    In what would become the U$, Bacon’s Rebellion, in which indentured servants who were badly treated, in what was then known as the Virginia Territory, joined together with runaway slaves and native peoples and set up thier own community. They were savagely put down and from that moment onward, poor “whites”, slaves, and native were deliberately set against each other in a racial segregation enforced by the white, European ruling class which has, to this very day, caused “white” human beings (folks) to feel superior to Black and native human beings (folks). With predictably violent and vicious results.

    Today, after decades of “Forever War”, after two plus centuries of conquest and after the creation of a military empire more than a century ago, far too many U$ians still can “not see” that “we” are a belligerent, violent nation that seeks world domination such that “we” may have access to the resources, land based or ocean based, of others and financial control of the entire world, either through outright war, threats of outright war, or by instituting crippling economic sanctions, which harm the many in the nation’s we target by denying the people adequate access to food and medicine. “We” do this even in the midst of a pandemic.

    However, we choose, as a patriotic act, or even an act of indifference, to “not see” the consequences of our wars and our sanctions, we ignore the human cost of our lack of awareness and concern, even as our political class maintain that these things, war and economic sanctions, “are a price worth paying”.

    “We” do not, apparently, “pay” that price, and politicians certainly “pay” nothing, but are rewarded for their inhumanity and conceit, being re-elected, or made wealthy passing back forth through the “swinging” (or revolving) “door”, from
    government to corporate largess and great wealth.

    U$ians (and I use that term and the dollar sign very intentionally to avoid the notion that “America”, is not just the U$, but rather is all of North, Central, and South America) still choose to “not see” the tens of millions of human beings whose deaths we are responsible for over the years since WWII, either directly or through the use of proxies, as “we” insist upon having “our way”.

    Be it Russiagate, Chinagate, Syriagate, Irangate, Libyagate, Afghanistangate, or Venezuelagate, “we” must have enemies to justify our militarized society.

    And we are a militaristic and militarized society.

    We have “wars” on poverty, on drugs, even on viruses (excepting AIDS, of course), and “we” have Czars in charge of these martial exercises in pompous morality plays or ballyhooed virtue signaling which enrich the political class, embolden pushers of “legal” opiates, and excuse greed as a consummate “good”.

    Yet, “we” can “not see” these things for what they truly are, for they are embedded in and hidden within cultural myths of superiority, of exceptionalism, and indispensability.

    Some might say “we” are a childish people.

    But that is not true.

    Children ask questions.

    Too often children learn that asking questions exasperates adults, even teachers.

    Too often, children “learn” not to ask questions.

    And when they become grownup “adults” (whether “in the room” or not), those human beings do not ask questions and dare not imagine that things could and should be different.

    Even when extinction looms, too many will “not see” that imagination and moral courage are the fundamental levers of genuine change and meaningful existence.

    Some might even call it survival.

    • May 12, 2020 at 11:58


    • mary connick
      May 12, 2020 at 16:48

      My grandpa used to say, “there are none so blind as those who will not see”. I know that this includes myself, however at least I believe that I am as culpable as everyone else and just don’t see my own biases. Where does this leave me, with regard to my personal opinions? Well, you have sort of expressed them very well. May I have permission to reprint this in full on my Facebook page?

    • Daniel
      May 16, 2020 at 10:15

      Excellent post. Denial is a strong force in many people’s lives and makes way for all sorts of atrocities, some of which we have perpetrated as a nation, as you write.
      Anyone seeking enlightenment – and I would count most people in that, as it seems to me a natural path of an aging human – is struggling with how and why our governments can make decisions that seem so selfish, so out of touch, so divorced from our collective realities and suffering. We refuse to see that the results of these decisions were, in fact, the intent, despite the obvious lies told to achieve them. And Russiagate, the bigger picture of which is finally starting to emerge, has been a deception of epic proportions. The question is, will we continue to believe what the propagandists tell us, in the face of the evidence that there was absolutely no basis for the hysteria of the last 4 years on this issue? Will we begin to see the many ways in which we are lied to each and every day?
      There exists a deep rot at the core of our politics, and we must break through the gas-lighting propaganda beating us into submission 24 hours a day to see it. We need a new age of enlightenment, one which defies the partisan parameters our masters would impose on us for their own gain. The cognitive dissonance and tribalism is literally killing us.

  20. Nathan Mulcahy
    May 12, 2020 at 10:14

    Don’t missed out on Aaron Mate’s latest piece on Russiagate on The Grayzone

  21. doris
    May 12, 2020 at 10:12

    Republicans are corporate wolves in wolves’ clothing. Democrats are corporate wolves in sheep’s clothing. You know where you stand with republicans, as they’re proud to screw the little guy. Democrats are deceitful. They claim to be on the side of the little guy, but have sold their souls to the devil that is profit before people. “Impeachment is off the table,” for the Republican war-mongers from hell. Obushma was every bit the war criminal Boy Shrub and his handlers were, but Democrats backed his crimes, both domestic and foreign, every crooked step of the way.
    Jimmy Dore, Chris Hedges, Cornell West, and many others have joined the Movement for a People’s Party. With 41% of Americans choosing to exit the criminal parties, it’s time to take the nation in a new, progressive direction.

  22. Nathan Mulcahy
    May 12, 2020 at 10:10

    Thanks for putting the threads together.

    From the very first day since the Presidential election, I had doubted the veracity of the Russiagae narrative. As things had progressed, I have used it as a great test case (another good one is/was the treatment of Assange) to measure the quality and the integrity of individual journalists, as well as journalistic organizations. On the individual side, many fell by the wayside – my biggest regret was James Risen, who has taken to drinking the kool aid. But two have proven their worth: Aaron Mate and Jimmy Dore. On the organization side, this website is a shining example of real journalism.

    “Flynn’s guilty plea was in response to prosecutors’ threats to indict his son if he pled otherwise. Tell me the difference, please, between this kind of stuff and the treatment of the accused in the postwar show trials in Eastern Europe”. Well, I have a better analogy – that of MAFIA. I propose that all the three-letter “intelligence” agencies be renamed as MAFIA-directorate 1, MAFIA-directorate 2, etc. And the White House should be renamed as MAFIA Central- – independent of whether the resident has a D or R suffix.

    Beyond that, I agree that this dysfunctional and rogue state has long achieved the point of no return, not the least due to the failure of it (supposed) “journalists”, or should I say due to the stellar success of it propagandists?

  23. P.
    May 12, 2020 at 09:54

    A pleasure to read, Patrick Lawrence, as usual. And right on target.

  24. Mike from Jersey
    May 12, 2020 at 08:21

    The political system in the United States may, indeed, be beyond reform.

    But indicting those people who tried to overturn the election is necessary if reform has any chance at all.

    The people in the intelligence community, the FBI, the DOJ who were involved in this should face the consequences.

    And it should not stop there.

    Political actors – even up to Obama if necessary -and certainly Schiff should be held to account.

    And, finally, those in the media who knowingly advanced this fraud should also be indicted and tried. A press pass is not a license to overturn elections.

    And, no, I am not a Trump supporter. Trump is a complete and total buffoon. But you either accept the results of elections or you don’t. If you don’t accept them, you have no right to try to fraudulently invalidate them.

    This was a crime and the criminals should face justice.

    If they don’t, forget about American democracy, because it is over.

  25. John Patrick
    May 12, 2020 at 06:46

    Thx Patrick! The level of deceit on the part of our government and hypocrisy on the part of the “progressive” media is mind numbing. I’m actually nervous about what is going to happen to our country when US Attorney Durham hands down indictments on these “intel” community weasels. Big trouble straight ahead.

  26. Donald Duck
    May 12, 2020 at 05:19

    Quick! Someone find another ‘Gate’. Anything will do as long as the NYT and WP can pontificate about it. Really, US politics has reached the level of a Feydeau Farce. And it’s not even funny!

  27. Sam F
    May 11, 2020 at 21:16

    I am glad that the Russiagate scammers are exposed. But the only reason their opponents won is that they opposed a sitting administration. It would be much more helpful had the Russiagaters exposed real corruption, like:

    1. the cashflows behind the major political parties and their influence on domestic and foreign policy;
    2. the scams behind the US wars for Israel and against socialist democracies; and
    3. the scams behind US false accusations and militarism against Russia and China.

    Why, for example, can I give hundreds of pages of hard evidence of the theft of over a hundred million in federal and state funds in Florida to the FBI, ask for their cooperation to simply check the cashflows to the corrupt public officials, and get no response at all?

    • Skip Scott
      May 13, 2020 at 08:19

      Sam F-

      I think you already know the answer. Their is no rule of law in the halls of Empire, only raw Power. I wish Bill Barr was a man of integrity, but if past performance is any guide, there is no basis for any hope.

      I am no fan of Trump, but the TDS that has befogged the minds of so many is even worse. Now, once again in 2020, the citizenry is being flimflammed into voting for corporate sponsored warmonger from column A or B. When are the people going to scream ENOUGH, and demand real systemic change?

    • Sam F
      May 13, 2020 at 08:40

      Because the crooks turned out to be Republican politicians and bagmen, as apparently are the FBI. They believe bribery is the US form of government: the rest is marketing, so law can be applied only to others.

  28. Buffalo_Ken
    May 11, 2020 at 20:54

    I reckon this is not independent of many individuals being held in prison when no crime has been committed. One lie leads to another and they all get so mingled together. Eventually the pile of lies gets so high it is unsustainable. A virus of fear helps push things along and comes as no surprise. If you want solace then avert your eyes. Justice is not easy and it is not assured.

    Without good journalism justice is a will-o’-the-wisp.

  29. Drew Hunkins
    May 11, 2020 at 16:42

    Excellent piece by Mr. Lawrence. Bravo!

    Here’s the deal. The national security [sic] state as represented by the Clapper, Brennan and Comey triumvirate is the secretive and devious executive arm of the president of the United States. This has almost always been the case since the rise of the militarist-imperialist state during the Korean War to our present day. In other words, the Wall St hustler Barack Obama, was behind much of this covert coup attempt and has tons to answer for.

    Notice that within hours of Barr dropping the charges against Flynn Obama immediately received saturation media coverage for calling out the Trump regime’s disorganized and haphazard response to the Covid epidemic. I’m no fan of Trump, but when he points out that this coup was a major crime against the American people he’s making an accurate statement, to the chagrin of the liberal intelligentsia.

    Much of the liberal establishment (and many Democrats in many folks’ personal lives) is totally incapable of any sort of self-reflection on this seminal issue. The day Barr did the righteous thing by dropping the charges against Flynn ran a piece disparaging Barr and slamming his decision; the comments section of the article was just as disconcerting to read as the article.

    Why? Why were the imperialists so intent on undermining President-elect Trump? Of course most CN fans know the reason better than I do — he was elected with a mandate to make peace with Moscow. This was his unforgivable sin, it infuriated and terrified the powers-that-be in Washington. Regardless of whether most observers truly believed he’d actually follow through with his intentions, it was the PERCEPTION that the military contractors, giant media conglomerates, intel and Defense Dept careerists had that matters above all else.

    • Bob Van Noy
      May 12, 2020 at 14:02

      Drew Hunkins I hope you won’t mind if I jump in here to congratulate you and the regular readers of CN going back to Robert Parry who have been here since the beginning of this very organized deception. I’m sure regulars like Sam F., Joe Tedesky, Skip Scott, F. G. Sanford, and so many more bucked the powers that be, to stay loyal to the truth.

      For Robert Parry, Joe Lauria, Patrick Lawrence and so many others, many thanks…

    • Drew Hunkins
      May 12, 2020 at 21:28

      Very nice of you Bob. And don’t forget you too were also down for the cause since the beginning. So thank you!

    • Skip Scott
      May 13, 2020 at 08:45

      Thanks Bob. I wish there was some pleasure to be had from being proven right. I also wish there were serious consequences in store for the perpetrators of the BIG LIE of RussiaGate. And I especially wish for justice for the murderer of Seth Rich. Alas, I fear all hope is in vain for any justice this side of heaven’s gate.

  30. jonny
    May 11, 2020 at 16:21

    thanks for this. i’m a lifelong Dem, but their journey to the dark side– NeoLiberalism, Wall St, “liberal” oligarchs, the Security Apparatus and Perpetual War– will continue without me

  31. Joe
    May 11, 2020 at 14:18

    “On the same day District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan threw out the Flynn case” he did no such thing.

    • Mary
      May 12, 2020 at 11:45

      So, if the DOJ refuses to prosecute, the judge will have to dismiss the case, will he not? The judge himself cannot prosecute. The judge may not like it, but I do not see how he can recruit somebody else to prosecute if the government won’t. The two FBI agents implicated? I do not think they can recruit anybody. Can the case sit around while the d’s hope to take the next election?

Comments are closed.