The “White Towel”?
I do not like General Flynn, in my opinion he is an Iran hater, anti-Islamic and a “shoot first ask questions later” type guy. That said, he became the first casualty in the intelligence community’s (IC) soft coup against Trump. Leaking SIGINT 1 information of Flynn’s conversation with a Russian diplomat was a vindictive targeting of a political foe. This whistleblowing was a political assassination and not an action of noble intent.
We have just witnessed the first round of a heavy weight boxing match. The two heavy weight contestants throwing punches to feel each other out. The IC began with a few jabs connecting Trump’s Presidency to Russian influence. Trump counters with a flurry of threats to cut $80 billion per annum intelligence budget, (larger than Russia’s defense budget) talks of rooting waste out of the Pentagon’s almost trillion-dollar budget, spending less on NATO, and ending some of America’s imperial wars and the Cold War. Trump has even made a comparison between the CIA and the NAZI’s.
The IC, reeling from this exchange, delivered a low blow. The leaking of highly classified SIGINT intercepts is devious but affective. It heightens our awareness and fear of Russian spying while curtailing Trump’s initiatives towards Russia. It also conceals the hypocrisy in Washington over alleged Russian espionage and manipulation. This is all accomplished while portraying our intelligence community as a protectorate of the American people.
The US intelligence community has been “protecting” the American people buying and manipulating foreign governments since 1945. They were recently caught tapped German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cell phone and just this past week WikiLeaks issued an actual intercept, not hearsay, on CIA spying and manipulation of France’s 2012 election. Silence!
The Russian skeptics continues to do whatever they can to disrupt any attempt to improve the relationships between Washington and Moscow. The anti-Russian hysteria has demonization Vladimir Putin, as other bullies like Netanyahu get a pass. These skeptics are obsessed with associating Trump and his administration to a diabolical plot with Russia.
Rules do not matter when you hold the perspective that Moscow’s hacking determined the outcome of the 2016 U.S. Presidential election and guilt is determined by association. The “Russians did it” threat is on par with Sen. Joe McCarthy’s Cold War pursuit of “communists” that infiltrated the U.S. government and those that encourage a better working relationship with Putin are “Russian apologist” or “Moscow stooges.”
Flynn’s firing/resignation may have been a defensive move by Trump Administrations to survive the first round. Flynn took one for the team, he fell on his sword like all loyal general are expected to do. What surprises me is Trump’s strategy. Why did he choose not to appeal the low blow? Has he given in to the powers of the intelligence community? Or will he come out swinging in round 2?
The IC has not released the tapes so we are relying on hearsay. Besides, it is not clear that Flynn lied. In his resignation letter, he stated that when talking to Vice President Pence, he did not deliberately leave out elements of his conversations with Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. And besides the future National Security Advisor talking to diplomats from foreign counties just might be in Flynn’s job description.
Reports indicate that the conversations with the the Russian ambassador raised the Obama’s sanctions to Flynn. Flynn responded that the Trump administration would be taking office in a few weeks and would review Russia policy and sanctions. That does not sound to be neither illegal nor improper. Attempting to temper Russia’s response to new seems to be diplomatic and not treasonous.
Senators like John McCain and Lindsey Graham salivate at any opportunities to threaten military action or economic sanctions against Russia. The media has been making on an anti-Putin binge ever since his actions aimed at Georgia’s in 2008. Since then the rhetoric has increased with every new event that finds the US and Russia on opposite sides. Whether it’s in Ukraine, Syria or the annexation of Crimea the media constantly encourages a re-escalation of the Cold War.
The Intelligence Community has an incurable case of Russophobia. They believe that we should return to the way it was in the old days with the Soviet Union. Washington views Russia as our enemy. Obama played along with this belief, right up until his final days in office, by imposing more sanctions and expelling Russian diplomats. Akin to planting an IED in the White House for the Trump Presidency as a welcoming present.
The exploitation of the Flynn was an opportunity to disruptive Trump’s attempt to get on better terms with a nation that has nuclear weapons pointed us and our allies. Avoiding squabbles and preventing misunderstandings over mundane issues should be a national objective.
Is it wrong to have a working relationship with Russia? A reset with Moscow should be the No. 1 national security objective. The Russophobes will continue to look for reasons to beat up Russia and Putin. The media will cooperate with their reports on Russian spy ships off the coast of Connecticut, Delaware and Virginia, Russian jets buzzing a U.S. warship in the Black Sea and Russian violations of the INF treaty.
The IC and the President should be in the same corner. They are not, they have begun to slug it out while shirking their responsibility to the US citizens. Who wins and who loses from the Cold War paradigm? Ramping up tensions with Russia divert taxpayer’s money into the Military-Industrial Complex to build a nuclear arsenal capable of an Armageddon that could eliminate life on the planet.
Stay tuned for Round 2: Will Trump answer the bell? or was Flynn’s firing the “white towel”?
*information taken from articles written by Philip Giraldi, a former CIA office of 18 years: Eric Margolis, and Eli Lake, Bloomberg; Robert Parry, Consortiumn News
- (intelligence derived from electronic signals and systems used by foreign targets, such as communications systems, radars, and weapons systems)