Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Stephen F. Cohen on the New Cold War - 12/13/2016

Tales of the New Cold War: Obama & the Democrats Allege Trump & Tillerson Have Kremlin Ties.
Stephen F. Cohen, @nyu @princeton University.

Tales of the New Cold War: Obama & the Democrats Allege Trump & Tillerson Have Kremlin Ties. Stephen F. Cohen, @nyu @princeton University.

Well, it’s not a rush. Keep in mind, when the DNC got hacked, we immediately assigned our intelligence community—our law enforcement—to investigate what had happened. And we determined—and announced—in October that it was the consensus of all the intelligence agencies in law enforcement that organizations affiliated with Russian intelligence were responsible for the hacking of the DNC materials that were being leaked. That was a month before the election. This was not a secret,” the president said.

I will say this, though, Trevor: None of this should be a big surprise,” he continued. “This was reported on before the election. I don’t think there was any doubt among anybody in the media or among members of Congress as to who was being advantaged or disadvantaged by the political gossip that was being put out in drip-drip-drip fashion leading up to the election.”

Then POTUS took things one step further, drawing a line between President-elect Donald Trump’s team and the Russians.

This was not a secret running up to the election!” exclaimed Obama. “The president-elect [Trump] in some of his political events specifically said to the Russians, ‘Hack Hillary’s emails so that we can finally find out what’s going on, and confirm our conspiracy theories.’ You had what was very clear relationships between members of the president-elect’s campaign team and Russians, and a professed shared view on a bunch of issues.”

If you recall, Trump’s then-campaign manager Paul Manafort was shown the door in August following a New York Times report connecting him to pro-Putin movements in Ukraine. Numerous other Trump team members have Russia ties as well, including retired Gen. Michael T. Flynn, Trump’s pick for national security adviser, who accepted a paid speaking gig from—and was a personal dinner guest of—Vladimir Putin last year; his pick for secretary of State, ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, a longtime pal of Putin’s whose company has billions tied up in Russia; and former adviser Carter Page, who is in Moscow for some reason.

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