17 May, 2017
The snarling partisan dog-fight in Washington continues; with the added top-up today being the news that President Trump had attempted to block the lately sacked FBI director James Comey from investigating then National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. Now the media is trumpeting about impeachment.
This affray revolves around three truths: That the Democrats are incapable of recognizing the legitimacy of any administration but their own; that the stale Washington elite refuses to accept that the American public had approved of an outsider; and that Donald Trump is perhaps the most-inexperienced president the US has seen in over a century.
However, there is another suggestion at the Russian roots behind this whole melee. David Charters, the University of New Brunswick professor who spent a lifetime in the study of various forms of conflict, suggested an additional dimension to this affray which makes a lot of sense. I borrow from his line of thinking here.
Answer these questions to see if you are expert enough to hold a valid opinion on the issue.
- Which national leader of an erstwhile superpower rival of the US has spent decades seeking to thwart American strategies and weaken their influence?
- Does this leader come from a background which understands what is meant by ‘Maskirovka’ and ‘diversionary tactics’?
- Does this leader resent American assumptions of moral superiority?
- Would he benefit from seeing the US tie itself up in knots as it erodes the authority and legitimacy of its institutions?
- Could he use his diplomats and business cronies to solicit contacts inside the United States, establish relationships of various kinds, and then leak details to others?
The Bushes, pere et fils, had their close linkages with the Saudis. The press – to no great surprise – gave Bill Clinton a free pass on his Chinese connections. Obama’s background was (and remains) a mystery and Hillary Clinton – quite probably the most troubling candidate ever to run for the White House – was clad in Teflon.
Yet somehow, right now, the Trump administrations connections with the Russians are a danger to the foundations of the Republic? Russian ‘biznessmen’ have been wooing Western leaders since the Soviet Union collapsed, nothing new here. But right now, the Washington pot is set on full boil and the US has never been more preoccupied… and Vladimir Putin couldn’t be happier.
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