There’s an exciting new development in the “Russia-gate” investigation, one that has the potential to blast apart what is arguably the biggest hoax in the history of American politics.
“Julian Assange told a U.S. congressman on Tuesday he can prove the leaked Democratic Party documents he published during last year’s election did not come from Russia and promised additional helpful information about the leaks in the near future.”
Assange has maintained all along that the Russians had nothing to do with procuring the DNC/Podesta emails, despite the intelligence community’s assertions – offered without evidence – that Vladimir Putin personally approved the alleged “hack.” Yet credible challenges to this view have emerged in recent days, including from a group of former intelligence officials, that throw considerable doubt on the idea that there was even a “hack” to begin with. “Pressed for more detail on the source of the documents,” says The Hill,
“Rohrabacher said he had information to share privately with President Trump. ‘Julian also indicated that he is open to further discussions regarding specific information about the DNC email incident that is currently unknown to the public,’ he said.”
What this looks like is an attempt by Assange to negotiate with the US government over his current status as a political prisoner: he has been confined to the Ecuadorian embassy in London for many years. Hanging over him is the threat of arrest should he leave and his rendition to the United States to face charges. Could he be making a bid for freedom, offering to provide evidence of how he got his hands on the DNC/Podesta emails in exchange for a pardon?
Rohrabacher, who has a history as a libertarian fellow traveler, has been the target of a smear campaign due to his unwillingness to go along with the Russophobic hysteria that’s all the rage in Washington, D.C. these days. Politico attacked him in a piece calling him “Putin’s favorite congressman,” and “news” accounts of this meeting with Assange invariably mention his “pro-Russian” views – as if a desire to get along with Russia is in itself somehow “subversive.”
It’s a brave stance to take when even the ostensibly libertarian and anti-interventionist Cato Institute has jumped on the hate-on-Russia bandwagon. Cato cut their ties to former Czech Republic president Vaclav Klaus because he refused to accept the War Party’s line on the US-sponsored Ukrainian coup that overthrew the country’s democratically elected chief of state. But it gets worse. Here’s Cato senior fellow Andrei Illarionov saying we are already at war with Russia:
“First of all, it is necessary to understand that this is a war. This is not a joke, this is not an accident, this is not a mistake, this is not a bad dream. It will not go away by itself. This is a war. As in any war, you either win or lose. And it is up to you what choice you will make.”
And it’s not just a cold war: the conflict must, says Illarionov, contain a military element:
“First, in purely military area, it is quite clear that victory in this war cannot be achieved without serious adjustments made to the existing military doctrine. Certainly, soft power is wonderful, but by itself it does not deter the use of force.”
While the rest of the country is going about its business with nary a thought about Russia, in Washington the craziness is pandemic. Which is why Democratic National Committee spokeswoman Adrienne Watson felt safe vomiting up the usual bile in response to Rohrabacher’s initiative: “We’ll take the word of the US intelligence community over Julian Assange and Putin’s favorite Congressman.”
The power of groupthink inside the Washington Beltway has energized both the neo-cold warrior hysterics – epitomized by the imposition of yet more sanctions — and the “Russia-gate” hoax to the point where it is unthinkable for anyone to challenge either. Yet Rohrabacher, whom I don’t always agree with, has the balls to stand up to both, and for that he should be supported.
Assange has stubbornly resisted revealing anything about the provenance of the DNC/Podesta emails, allowing the CIA/NSA to claim that it was the Russians who “hacked the election,” and also giving them a free hand to smear WikiLeaks as an instrument of the Kremlin. This meeting with Rohrabacher, and the promise of revelations to come, indicate that he is reconsidering his stance – and that we are on the verge of seeing “Russia-gate” definitively debunked.
We here at Antiwar.com have challenged the “mainstream” media’s wholesale swallowing of the government’s line from the very beginning. That’s because there hasn’t been one iota of solid proof for blaming the Russians, or even for the assertion that the DNC was “hacked.” We don’t accept government pronouncements at face value: indeed, we don’t accept the “conventional wisdom” at face value, either. We always ask the question: “Where’s the evidence?”
Our credo gave us an advantage during the run up to the Iraq war, when the pressure to conform to what “everybody knows” was at its height. We said there were no “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq and provided a platform for the very few who warned that the invasion would be a disaster.
We were smeared as traitors for it, but were vindicated in the end. It’s the same story with the whole panoply of interventions undertaken by the War Party in recent years: Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, etc. While the Washington know-it-alls were telling us to just trust them and all would be well, Antiwar.com told the bitter truth to the American people – that our leaders were leading under over a cliff. And now that we’re at the bottom of it, we’re faced with yet more lies coming from the same sources and their lapdog media. The “Russia-gate” hoax is just the latest example – and it won’t be the last.
That’s why it’s vitally important for our readers to give us the support we need to keep this web site going: because the War Party never rests. There’s always some new scheme, some fresh atrocity that they’re planning, and their captive media is right there, ready, willing, and able to pull the wool over the eyes of the public. Indeed, their machinations are so constant, and so convoluted, that it’s next to impossible for the average ordinary person to keep track of it all – and that’s the reason for Antiwar.com.
We keep track of their lies for you – and systemically debunk them. But we can’t continue to do it without your support – your financial support. The War Party never lacks for resources: the arms dealers, the neoconservative foundations, the political Establishment – they’re all flush with ready cash. We, on the other hand, just have you, our readers and supporters.
That may seem like a very uneven playing field, and it no doubt is. But we have two big factors on our side: the truth, and the fact that Americans are waking up to that truth. The people are increasingly aware that foreign wars and overseas bogeymen are just a distraction concocted by the powers that be to divert attention away from the real problems that confront us right here at home.
So I’m optimistic. But I’ll tell you what would make me even more optimistic, and that is if our current fundraising campaign was cut short by an outpouring of support. I don’t mean to boast, or toot my own horn, but we here at Antiwar.com have certainly earned it. After over twenty years of calling out the War Party and swimming against the tide, we deserve your support.
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NOTES IN THE MARGIN
You can check out my Twitter feed by going here. But please note that my tweets are sometimes deliberately provocative, often made in jest, and largely consist of me thinking out loud.
I’ve written a couple of books, which you might want to peruse. Here is the link for buying the second edition of my 1993 book, Reclaiming the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement, with an Introduction by Prof. George W. Carey, a Foreword by Patrick J. Buchanan, and critical essays by Scott Richert and David Gordon (ISI Books, 2008).
You can buy An Enemy of the State: The Life of Murray N. Rothbard (Prometheus Books, 2000), my biography of the great libertarian thinker, here.