independent news and opnion

The Mueller Report Indicts the Trump-Russia Conspiracy Theory

0 40

For more than two years, leading US political and media voices promoted a narrative that Donald Trump conspired with or was compromised by the Kremlin, and that Special Counsel Robert Mueller would prove it. In the process, they overlooked countervailing evidence and diverted anti-Trump energies into fervent speculation and prolonged anticipation. So long as Mueller was on the case, it was possible to believe that “The Walls Are Closing In” on the traitor/puppet/asset in the White House.

The long-awaited completion of Mueller’s probe, and the release of his redacted report, reveals this narrative—and the expectations it fueled—to be unfounded. No American was indicted for conspiring with Russia to influence the 2016 election. Mueller’s report does lay out extensive evidence that Trump sought to impede the investigation, but he declined to issue a verdict on obstruction. By contrast, the report shows no evidence that the Trump campaign conspired with the Russian government’s alleged effort to defeat Hillary Clinton, and renders this conclusion: “Ultimately, the investigation did not establish that the [Trump] Campaign coordinated or conspired with the Russian government in its election-interference activities.” As a result, Mueller’s report provides the reverse of what Russiagate promoters led their audiences to expect: Rather than detailing a sinister collusion plot with Russia, it presents what amounts to an extended indictment of the conspiracy theory itself.

1. Russiagate Without Russia

The most fundamental element of a conspiracy is contact between the two sides doing the conspiring. Hence, on the eve of the report’s release, The New York Times noted that among the “outstanding questions” that Mueller would answer were the nature of “contacts between Kremlin intermediaries and the Trump campaign.”

Mueller’s report does answer that question: There were effectively no “Kremlin intermediaries.” The report contains no evidence that anyone from the Trump campaign spoke to a Kremlin representative during the election outside of conversations with the Russian ambassador and a press-office assistant, both of which were ruled out as elements of a conspiracy (more on them later).

It should be no surprise then to learn, from Mueller, that when “Russian government officials and prominent Russian businessmen began trying to make inroads into the new administration” after Trump’s election victory, they did not know who to call. These powerful Russians, Mueller noted, “appeared not to have preexisting contacts and struggled to connect with senior officials around the President-Elect.” If top Russians did not have “preexisting contacts and struggled to connect with” the people that they supposedly conspired with, perhaps that is because they did not actually conspire.

Source link

You might also like

Thanks !

Thanks for sharing this, you are awesome !