independent news and opnion

The Long History of US-Russian “Meddling”

0 34

The John Batchelor Show, March 6

Even though the bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee found “no direct evidence of a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia,” Russiagate allegations of “collusion” between candidate and then–President Donald Trump and the Kremlin have poisoned American politics for nearly three years. They are likely to continue to do so for the foreseeable future, and due not only to the current subpoena-happy Democratic chairs of House “investigative” committees. 

At the core of the Russiagate narrative is the allegation that the Kremlin “meddled” in the 2016 US presidential election. The word “meddle” is nebulous and could mean most anything, but Russiagate zealots deploy it in the most ominous ways, as a war-like “attack on America,” a kind of “Pearl Harbor.” They also imply that such meddling is unprecedented when in fact both the United States and Russia have interfered repeatedly in the other’s internal politics, in one way or another, certainly since the 1917 Russian Revolution.

For context, recall that such meddling is an integral part of Cold War and that there have been three Cold Wars between America and Russia during the past one hundred years. The first was from 1917 to 1933, when Washington did not even formally recognize the new Soviet government in Moscow. The second is, of course, the best known, the forty-year Cold War from about 1948 to 1988, when the US and Soviet leaders, Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev, declared it over. And then, by my reckoning, the new, ongoing Cold War began in the late 1990s, when the Clinton administration initiated the expansion of NATO toward Russia’s borders and bombed Moscow’s longtime Slav and political ally Serbia.

That’s approximately eighty-five years of US-Russian Cold War in a hundred years of relations and, not surprisingly, a lot of meddling on both sides, even leaving aside espionage and spies. The meddling has taken various forms.

In the period from 1917 to 1933, such interference was extreme on both sides. In 1918, President Woodrow Wilson sent approximately 8,000 US troops to Siberia to fight against the “Reds” in the Russian Civil War. For its part, Moscow founded the Communist International (Comintern) in 1919 and urged the American Communist Party to pursue revolutionary regime change in the United States, an historical analogue of the “democracy promotion” later pursued by Washington. During these years, both sides eagerly generated, and amply funded, “disinformation” and “propaganda” directed at and inside the other country.

During the second Cold War, from 1948 to 1988, the “meddling” was expanded and institutionalized. At least until the McCarthyite attempted purge of such activities, the American Communist Party, now largely under the control of Moscow, was an active force in US politics, with some appeal to intellectuals and others, as well as bookstores and “schools”—all amply supplied with English-language Soviet “propaganda” and “disinformation”—in many major cities.

Source link

You might also like

Thanks !

Thanks for sharing this, you are awesome !