Donald John Trump has a problem with denial. Since our intelligence agencies have confirmed, one after another, that Russia interfered in the 2016 election, Trump has taken the very notion as an attack against himself. Trump has gone from flat-out denial to suggesting he doesn’t know who did it back to flat-out denial proclaiming it an “excuse for Dem loss,” in a twisted cycle.
Trump’s supporters are in constant denial and claim that Russia never perpetrated a cyber attack on the U.S. Now, 8 current and former intelligence officials from both the Obama and Trump administrations are shattering the echo chamber once and for all at the Aspen Security Forum. Watch:
Of significant note is the man Trump appointed to run the Central Intelligence Agency, Mike Pompeo. Pompeo confirmed in Aspen that not only did Russia interfere in the 2016 election, but that this is a game Russia has been playing for a long time. Pompeo is 100% correct.
While Russia has been constantly meandering into American politics over the decades, nothing came close to the Russian government’s attack on the 2016 election. Nothing until you go back to the Soviet-era.
Leaving Aspen and taking a short trip into the past:
In 1960 the Soviets offered to help John F. Kennedy’s opponent in the Democratic primary. Adlai Stevenson, Kennedy’s opponent, declined the offer to set up a secret propaganda campaign to smear Kennedy. Stevenson lost the primary but he kept his honor.
In 1968 Soviets offered to secretly fund Hubert Humphrey’s campaign against Richard “I am not a crook” Nixon. Humphrey declined. He may have lost the campaign but it lost like an American: on his own terms.
And again, in 1976, the Soviets came after our Democracy. The hardline anti-communist Democrat, Henry “Scoop” Jackson was attacked by a smear campaign. Soviet spies forged FBI documents alleging that Jackson was secretly gay, something incredibly taboo at the time. Papers around the United States received the documents and when the news broke, the smear was complete. Jackson lost the election.
There are many parallels that we can see here in the way the Soviets acted to thwart American Democracy and how Putin, a Soviet-era throwback, has used the same tactics to interfere in the 2016 election.
The Soviets offered to run a smear campaign for Stevenson. The Russian government hacked the DNC and ran a smear campaign against Hillary Clinton.
The Soviets offered to secretly fund Humphrey. The Trump campaign may have violated campaign finance law when Trump Jr. met with a Kremlin-linked lawyer to receive a contribution of information.
And finally, we get to the engineered sex scandal. The Soviets created a sex scandal accusing Jackson of being gay. In 2016, Putin’s Russia engineered a sex scandal, still believed by many, in which the Clintons and John Podesta ran a child sex ring out of a family pizza parlor.
Dubbed “Pizzagate,” the malicious lie even drove one individual to stalk into the Comet Ping Pong pizza parlor in Washington D.C armed and ready to kill while families were in the building. The Pizzagate shooter has since been sentenced to 4 years in prison.
One other parallel from Politifact:
“Notably, the past attempts to help a candidate were arranged through the ambassador. And much of the investigation into last year has focused on meetings the current Russian ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak, had with key officials on Trump’s team before Trump became president.”
Kislyak has been at the epicenter of the scandals currently rocking the Trump White House. Make no mistake, Putin is trying to rebuild the Soviet empire.
Featured image of John Brennan, James Clapper, and CNN’s Wolf Blitzer via screen capture from YouTube