Putin Unmasked

Congress just passed a sanctions bill directed at Iran, North Korea, and Russia, by margins of 98-2 in the Senate and 419-3 in the House. 

There is a significant faction of Republicans who yearn to have better relations with Putin.  They berate Congress for "poking the Russian Bear" and wish that President Trump had vetoed this bill, if only for symbolic reasons.

Patrick Buchanan is something of an ideological relative to Trump.  He asks, "Is Russia really our enemy?" while mocking "our heroic Senate" for passing this bill.  Rand Paul, one of Trump's best allies in Congress, voted no on the sanctions, while his dad  writes that the true reason for the sanctions is because the "military industrial complex" wants to "continue getting rich terrifying Americans."

Perhaps one can understand the impulse of conservatives to defend Putin in the past.  Putin was a strong man, as opposed to weak Obama.  And who in his right mind would want war with Russia who now possesses significantly more nuclear weapons than America?  Admittedly, a threatening Putin – "[Americans] do not feel a sense of the impending danger – this is what worries me" – can be frightening.

Given recent developments, though, it seems harder to countenance the idea of improved Moscow-American relations as a realistic possibility.  While the fake story about Trump-Russia collusion has collapsed, the real story about collusion among Democrats, Hillary, Comey, and Putin is more explosive than ever.

The most interesting development in the Russia saga since Comey's bizarre testimony, or even since the story originally broke, was revelations this past week that the anti-Trump Steele Dossier was a product of Russian agents. 

Bill Browder, a billionaire with extensive Russia experience, testified that Fusion GPS, the company behind the anti-Trump dossier, should have registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act due to its ties to Russia.  He further stated that "in the spring and summer of 2016[, Fusion GPS was] receiving money indirectly from a senior Russian government official."

If Russia pushes out articles on Sputnik News that Trump is a bad guy with a sexual deviancy problem, that is propaganda; if Russia disseminates this story but hides the source, it is disinformation.  The distinction is significant.  Disinformation is highly subversive.  Fusion GPS ostensibly broke the law to hide its relationship with Moscow, and the company is not exactly trying to improve the situation when it refuses to testify

Lest anyone assume that ex-KGB Putin was merely an innocent bystander being snookered by rogue Russian operatives funding Fusion GPS, it is informative to examine the dossier itself.  The first source cited is a "senior Russian Foreign Ministry figure," and the second source is a "former top level Russian intelligence officer still active inside the Kremlin" (8). 

The anti-Trump dossier was created with assistance from the highest levels in Moscow.  They engaged in a sophisticated disinformation campaign to harm Trump...and succeeded.

But it is even worse than that.  This dossier was disseminated to the public not just to make Trump look bad.  Comey actually used the dossier as justification to spy on Trump.  This spying operation was then leveraged into getting a special prosecutor.  Mueller has the power to destroy the freely elected president of America due to a Kremlin-orchestrated campaign.

How could the FBI director use a Russian disinformation product to give himself the power to spy on Trump?  Comey effectively acted as a pawn in this Kremlin operation to harm Trump.

The absolute most generous explanation for what occurred is that a man with a thirty-year-long career, who was savvy enough to beat all the treacherous swamp monsters to the top of the pile, the American in charge of stopping foreign powers from nefariously affecting American society and government, didn't know he had to check the source of the anti-Trump dossier before beginning what is arguably the most politically charged investigation of America's history.

This is not the first time Comey has been caught up in the Clinton-Russian nexus.  Bill Clinton gave out the most egregious pardon in American history to Marc Rich, who, among various illegal activities, laundered billions of dollars for Russia's elite KGB and communist leaders.  Comey handled a criminal investigation of Bill Clinton's pardon and ended the case quietly.  No prosecution.

Mark Levin opines that "Vladamir Putin, the Russians, did not pick sides in this election.  Some have argued that he wanted to help Trump; some have argued he wanted to help Hillary.  No, that's not it at all.  They just want to disrupt America."  Unlike Buchanan and the Pauls, this opinion would concede the fact that Russia does pose a serious problem for America.  But it still falls short.

If Fusion GPS is just a raw tool for Russian destruction, one would suspect that it would be used to attack Democrat politicians as well.  So when did Fusion GPS release an anti-Obama dossier?

Fusion GPS did help attack Romney in 2012.  It is also a stalwart defender of Venezuela's communists.  Oh, and by the way, Putin is also a friend to Maduro.

Russia's meddlesome support for America's left wing can be traced back even farther.  As Peter Schweizer documented in his excellent book Clinton Cash, the Clinton Foundation was given 145 million dollars from Uranium One shareholders right as Hillary Clinton permitted the sale of American uranium to Russia.  Russia paid Uranium One, and Uranium One paid the Clinton Foundation.  In effect, the Russians laundered a massive amount of money to the Clintons. 

Hillary has gotten so many millions of dollars from foreign entities, and especially Russia, that the feasibility of her recent political career without that funding is questionable.  The Clinton Foundation used that money in its massive operation touching on countless politicians, lawyers, and media figures, who influenced citizens.

If Putin did consciously choose to do these indirect deals with Hillary, which were hugely beneficial to her, because he somehow knew she would act in ways pleasing to Russia, he made a wise decision.  Hillary Clinton opposed the Magnitsky Act, infamously gave the "reset button," and opposed modernization of American nuclear forces. 

Hillary wanted to place severe limitations on exploitation of America's energy reserves.  This is possibly the policy Putin desires above all else.  His bank accounts, and the Russian economy, are dependent on gas and oil exports.  If America limits energy production, the price goes up, and Russia gets more money.

Then there is the case of Hillary's missing – BleachBitted and hammer-smashed – emails.  Her security was unbelievably bad.  Russia almost certainly has those emails.  If the Russians released the special access program emails, it would have caused pandemonium in America.  But instead of hurting Hillary with information they already possessed, they invented obscene Trump stories.

The anti-Trump dossier had an interesting line in it, prominently highlighted in the summary: "PUTIN motivated by fear and hatred of Hillary CLINTON."  The question is, why would Russian disinformation want to create the impression that Putin hates Hillary?

American Thinker's excellent writer Clarice Feldman wrote that Trump is good at "unmasking" frauds.  These frauds are commonly known to be the RINO politicians, the far-left Democrats, and the crazed media.  Putin can now be included.  This is a guy who pretends to support national sovereignty and conservative values.  Yet Trump's very existence has provoked Putin into aggressively interfering in America's most sensitive domestic matters, all while coming in strong on the Democrats' side.

Putin was behind a massive flow of money to Hillary Clinton – so much money, in fact, that he has altered the course of American politics forever.  Beyond that, the Kremlin's disinformation is now responsible for a special prosecutor. 

For all of Putin's whining about how awful it is that America has a military alliance with Poland, or how America had an ambassador in Ukraine when the Ukrainian people ousted the corrupt clown Yanukovych, none of it compares to what Putin has done to harm Trump.  Putin's publicly known interference in American affairs is far worse than even the alleged things America does to Russia.

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