Russiagate runs out of road

Year after year, every time that there was an unproven, poorly-sourced rumour about Russia, Democrats demanded new sanctions.

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The idea was that the sanctions would force Russia to "change its behaviour".
And so they piled up the sanctions, until inevitably this happened.

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Trump, O'Brien said, has been tougher than his predecessors. So much so, he argues, that there's little else Washington can do since they've already "sanctioned the heck out of" individuals, companies, and the government in Russia, kicked Russian spies out of the U.S., and closed down consulates and other diplomatic facilities. "Nevertheless we continue to message the Russians, and President Trump continues to message the Russians: don't get involved our elections," O'Brien said, adding that the warning extends to Beijing and Tehran, as well.

Brennan, however, pointed out throughout the interview that intelligence reports indicate that the messaging — and the sanctions — don't seem to have gotten through to the Kremlin, as there's still evidence Russia is working to undermine the electoral process stateside. Foreign policy experts have also suggested current sanction policy doesn't always prove to be a deterrent, since Moscow views them as permanent and therefore has little incentive to change its behavior purely based on those actions.

When every bullsh*t, easily disproven, politically-motivated story is believed and sanctioned, then Russia is right - they're permanent.
And since the charges are entirely fictional, there's no behavior that Russia can change to satisfy Washington.

So what happens the next time some BS story about Russia is reported? What exactly are we going to threaten them with since there's nothing left to sanction?
Are we going to move troops to the border? Oops, that's already been done too.

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Just in case there was any doubt that the accusations against Russia were total lies, take a look at this development.

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Russia’s exports of petroleum products to the United States more than doubled in the first half of 2020 compared to the same period last year, reaching their highest levels since at least 2004, Russian outlet RBC reported, citing Russian customs data.

Russia’s oil products exports to the U.S. jumped to 9.1 million tons between January and June 2020, up from 4 million tons for the same period in 2019.

The U.S. was Russia’s second-largest buyer of oil products – accounting for 12 percent of Russia’s petroleum products exports – after the Netherlands, which accounted for 16.3 percent of all oil product exports, the customs data showed.

We are the second biggest buyer of Russian oil in the world. Does that sound to you like someone who feels threatened by Russian?

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Brennan, however, pointed out throughout the interview that intelligence reports indicate that the messaging — and the sanctions — don't seem to have gotten through to the Kremlin, as there's still evidence Russia is working to undermine the electoral process stateside.

Brennan can produce it, or it's a lie.

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19 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato

@Pluto's Republic Saw this current piece in the online version of The Oregonian, biggest paper in OR.

How a Bible burning in Portland reveals Russia’s efforts to upend the 2020 U.S. election

So the basic contention is that a video taken by Ruptly (Russian video news) of a a bible and flag burning that went viral among conservatives was Russian efforts to undermine the election. From what I can tell doing a search, this video was big in right wing sites. Compare this to images of a burning elk statue which went international. I am sure that now environmentalists will change their vote to Trump at such an outrage.

How images of a bible and flag burning, which happened, effects the election is anybody's guess in the middle of a pandemic and national economic collapse. This portends just a continual stream of the most absurd claims until Jesus comes back. The best one to date is that Russians want Trump to win and the Chinese and Iranians want Biden to win. Americans apparently have no choice in the matter.

Given what is happening in Portland, I doubt if conservatives need any reason to vote against Biden. How does this compare to American media showing a Navy vet getting beaten and maced in changing opinions? Isn't that video causing division?

So the creative license here is it must involve something Russian. No more proof needed.

BTW Ruptly was the only news organization with video of Julian Assange being taken out of the Ecuadorian embassy. No other news outlets around.

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@MrWebster

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10 users have voted.

@Pluto's Republic
That some clickbait farm in Russia is posting puppy memes on facebook.
and to some that counts as "evidence".

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@gjohnsit

...and I'm still chuckling over it. Yet, I fear it could be true. These Neocons are saboteurs.

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12 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato
OzoneTom's picture

From RT last month:
US sanctions move for Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline spells end of Transatlantic bond – German ex-Chancellor Schroeder

A sanctions bill currently being debated in the US Congress is “a widespread, unjustified attack on the European economy and unacceptable interference with EU sovereignty and energy security in Western Europe,” former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder argued in a position paper drafted ahead of parliamentary hearings on the matter.

The penalties – which affect “over 120 shipbuildng, engineering, environmental and security companies that work or have worked with Nord Stream 2” – mark the “definite termination of the Transatlantic partnership,” the retired chancellor’s statement said, as cited by the German business daily Handelsblatt.

“Behind each of these companies are European jobs that are at risk,” it warned. Schroeder’s judgment appears to match that of Nord Stream AG, a company operating the pipeline.

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snoopydawg's picture

From Mueller saying that he saw no evidence of Trump colluding with Putin to how the FBI lied on their Fisa Warrants to how CrowdStrike admitted that they saw no evidence that Russia hacked the DNC computers. But hey once you've made up your mind to a conspiracy theory why let facts change your mind.

But oh isn't it fun to make fun of people who believe in conspiracy theories? Centrists laugh all day at what the QAnon folks believe.

“QAnon is a Russian op. Don’t be a useful idiot for Putin.”

LMAO:

yep this is one of far too many critically pressing dangers facing our nation: conspiracy theories are perpetuated in the right wing echo chamber and find fertile ground in susceptible brain pans that focus on belief, hate, and a disinclination to read empirical studies.

I would never have guessed that shared psychosis was such a big tent

So how does Kos who was pushing for Warren to be Joe's VP react to Kamala's pick?

But politically? It removed pressure to use the vice-presidential card to go left.

Which goes back to the poll that 51% of Bernie supporters will not vote for Biden. Gee I wonder if that number has gone up?

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20 users have voted.

“Restoring the soul of this nation” is just MAGA with more words

Twitter is like a game of telephone

Pluto's Republic's picture

@snoopydawg

He's a Fake candidate who belongs in Adult Day Care, not in the White House.

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25 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato
usefewersyllables's picture

@Pluto's Republic

the perfect candidate for those who would stick their hands up his ass and wiggle his arms and jaw like some obscene meat-puppet. And he'll probably and predictably keel over soon without any effort on their part, and make way for their anointed authoritarian. Candidates with all those desirable properties are hard to come by...

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17 users have voted.

Twice bitten, permanently shy.

@Pluto's Republic
It looks like Democrats giving up.
Giving up on a better world. Giving up on a better future. Giving up on any possibility of reforming our political system.

It's just sad.

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20 users have voted.
Pluto's Republic's picture

@gjohnsit

It's an ideology made possible by the stealth of Obama and Obiden.

They can only win if they trick the Left into joining the Democratic Party — as they have successfully done.

The Left have been chasing crumbs for decades.

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18 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato

@snoopydawg Putin is:

a. Devil
b. Lucifer
c. All above.

We know that Putin is all of the above because.

a. Shut your mouth you Russian puppet.

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18 users have voted.

@MrWebster
Inevitably there will be a report of Russia doing something that we disapprove of.
Politically it will demand a response.
And then someone will report that we've already sanctioned everything.
So the response will be "but we have to do something!"
We've long since given up on diplomacy. And now we've run out of economic bullets.
And that only leaves punishing our allies or a military response.
Neither of which have a good outcome.

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16 users have voted.

@gjohnsit In the propaganda narrative that Trump is Putin's best friend, they have come to believe and push the point that Putin/Russia have not been punished enough--of course due to Putin and Trump being secret gay lovers. And of course, if Biden wins, the push will be to take it to Russia/Putin somehow. Naturally, given the current sanctions only more extreme measures would be available which include military action (most likely in Syria).

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11 users have voted.

@MrWebster

military action (most likely in Syria)

I'm going to try to knock out a diary about Syria today.
Proxy War is an understatement.

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13 users have voted.

I still think that Biden at least will try to totally kick Russia out of SWIFT. But so far SWIFT has declined to do it. But of course this would also hurt countries and banks trying to do business in Russia. The result of course is that both Russia and China has set up systems for payments outside of SWIFT.

But with Nord Stream 2, the US is imposing sanctions directly on allies. And the Germans are none too pleased with Merkel's FM ranting about the US trying to dictate Germany's energy policies.

There is this idea that Biden can repair the damage that Trump created with the Europeans. Well, I think Biden will go even more ballistic on sanctions which will cause a lot of anger on the part of the EU as they will have to foot the bill.

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14 users have voted.

@MrWebster
The fact that you have US senators calling private citizens in Germany to threaten them only proves that the German government isn't going to bend the knee.

Of course it's not being reported that way.
It's similar to how it doesn't get reported this pipeline controversy is all about Russia not wanting to fund hostile foreign governments.

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15 users have voted.
Pluto's Republic's picture

@MrWebster

Well, I think Biden will go even more ballistic on sanctions which will cause a lot of anger on the part of the EU...

Because Biden would be run by the Neocons, who now populate the Democratic Party. You could watch them as they overran that think-tank rat-lab they operate at Daily Kos.

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15 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato
snoopydawg's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Good lord. This piece is full of propaganda and lots of made up facts. The folks who denigrate Putin don't know what the F they are talking about. They think that Putin has kept the country in poverty because he's mean and that is what mean people do when the truth is that he cut the military budget to lift more people out of poverty. You know the poverty we helped create after the fall of the USSR and we installed Yeltzin so we could asset strip the country? Putin came in and put a stop to that and any billionaire that wouldn't get on board with rebuilding the country was put in jail. We keep increasing our military budget no matter how many of us fall further into poverty. Putin cut his by 10%. Our congress including most democrats voted against a 10% cut in ours.

The author of this diary has been the biggest cheerleader to keep Russia Gate going. Even after the truth about it was released he has kept pushing propaganda. And lots of them swallow it. The whole republican party is working for Putin. Do they know how insane that sounds? And the only thing dems had a problem with that scenario is that Trump wouldn't give Ukraine lethal weapons to fight against Russia's invasion of Ukraine. Never any mention of how we are propping up the same Nazi group that our grandfathers fought during WWII though.

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/8/12/1968631/-Russia-s-COVID-19-va...

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14 users have voted.

“Restoring the soul of this nation” is just MAGA with more words

Twitter is like a game of telephone

snoopydawg's picture

@snoopydawg

but apparently could care less that many of them are joining NATO troops in countries that border Russia. Yeah I am sure Putin told Trump that he wanted that to happen. Clinton blew our chance for peace after the collapse of the USSR and instead set us on a path to permanent war. Clinton was the greater evil.

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15 users have voted.

“Restoring the soul of this nation” is just MAGA with more words

Twitter is like a game of telephone

@snoopydawg Lots of good information on the vaccine and propaganda on it.

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2020/08/western-media-falsely-claim-that-r...

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@MrWebster

'Western' Media Falsely Claim That Russia's Covid-19 Vaccine Is Ready To Go

After President Vladimir Putin announced that Russia's Covid-19 vaccine candidate had gained an approval from its regulator, 'western' media went into a anti-Russian frenzy to sow fear and doubt about it.

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2020/08/western-media-falsely-claim-that-r...

Displaying again the horrific propaganda smothering the US.

Thanks, Mr Webster

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6 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato
snoopydawg's picture

@Pluto's Republic

and Putin that Sumner wrote on DK. He takes so many liberties with the truth it’s just downright laughable. No links to back it up either. Then there’s the echo chamber that weighs in. But this was one of his worst.

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2 users have voted.

“Restoring the soul of this nation” is just MAGA with more words

Twitter is like a game of telephone

Pluto's Republic's picture

@snoopydawg

...but I was too overcome by disgust to comment. Sumner's article was seething in ignorance, and was based on a willful misinterpretation of the Russian announcement pushed by US propaganda media — accusing Russia of its own failings:

By skipping large-scale clinical trials, the Russian dash for a vaccine has raised widespread concern that it is circumventing vital steps — and potentially endangering people — in order to score global propaganda points.

.

The reality is that Russia has not approved a vaccine against Covid-19 and it is not skipping large-scale clinical trials.

Newspapers around the globe have picked up on this Anglo mental disorder of continuous lying to provoke Russia — and the disgrace of US media. They point out the truth as does MOA:

The Russia regulator gave a preliminary approval for a vaccine candidate to start the large-scale clinical trial. This is similar to an emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The Russian vaccine candidate will, like all others, have to go through the now announced third trial phase before it will get any general approval.

There is no excuse for the media to wrongly claim that Russia has approved a ready to go vaccine. The Sputnik Vaccine website explains in seven languages that the third trial phase of the clinical trials is still to come.

.

The rest of it was just a depressing display of mental degeneration.

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4 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato

Apparently, that's how we run.

https://www.businessinsider.com/gop-senators-threaten-germany-mukran-por...

Germany is furious after 3 GOP senators threatened a small port with 'crushing' sanctions for helping Russian ships build a gas line across Europe

Adam Payne 
Aug 11, 2020, 4:14 AM

The US's relationship with Germany is under increased strain after politicians in Berlin reacted angrily to a letter from three Republican senators threatening "crushing" sanctions against a small port for helping Russian ships build a gas pipeline.

Sens. Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton, and Ron Johnson last week wrote to Faehrhafen Sassnitz, the operators of the Mukran port in the German seaside town of Sassnitz, threatening "crushing legal and economic sanctions" if it did not stop assisting Russian vessels that were building Nord Stream 2.

... The letter, which was cited by Deutsche Welle, said the port operators were "knowingly providing significant goods, services, and support" to Russian ships developing the pipeline. The letter told the port operators to "cease activities" or face "potentially fatal measures" like having commercial ties with the US severed.

Niels Annen, a minister of state in Germany's Federal Foreign Office, has called the letter "completely outrageous."

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15 users have voted.

Orwell, in the novel 1984, talks about the usefulness of the state perpetually creating an enemy. The identity changes from time to time and the people are always willing to hate the new enemy.
From Wiki:

Transferred nationalism: Oceania's enemy changes and an orator changes mid-sentence. The crowd instantly transfers its hatred to the new enemy. Transferred nationalism swiftly redirects emotions from one power unit to another (for example, Communism, Pacifism, Colour Feeling, and Class Feeling).

We are now witnessing this full-on, using first Muslim countries, and then Russia and then China and back and forth. This is utter and complete bullshit, and dangerous as hell.

Take Russia as an example. What has Russia done to the US? I can't come up with a single thing that is anything other than US media fantasy. What has the US done to Russia? The list is endless. The US is continuing the British tradition of centuries of irrational hate and fear of Russia. The irony here, which is well appreciated by Russians, is that Russia completes Europe. It has everything that Europe lacks. Europe becomes a much greater power when integrated with Russia. Russia would like that also, and is predisposed to favor Europe. The fact that is is being driven towards the East is an enormous loss for the West. Russia can, and will, complete China (and India).

The usefulness of Russia as an enemy works at every level in the West. My local congresscritter, Seth Moulton, had a town hall in which his main theme was that Russia is a very dangerous enemy and he will protect us in Congress with aggressive legislation against Russia. He cited the often used "17 intelligence agencies said". It was a magnificent display of complete bullshit, but oriented to get him elected.

This will prove to be an incredibly costly tactic. The world "gets it". The US cannot rule if it is hated and the people see through this bullshit. Both Russia and China are independent and well defended against American aggression, economic, propaganda and other. They become stronger, more independent and better respected around the world. I don't see how we change. Hate and fear are well baked into our society as effective marketing tools.

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Capitalism has always been the rule of the people by the oligarchs. You only have two choices, eliminate them or restrict their power.