A Clean Well-Lit Place to Expand Your View — in Moscow
If you have time to kick back for a few minutes, and would like a refreshing overview of "these dark days of the Hoax" — I think you might enjoy my favorite RT show, Crosstalk with Peter Lavelle. Today we'll travel to Moscow and watch the wacky end-of-the-Hoax events through international eyes.
Lavelle hails from Beverly Hills, but launched his career in Moscow, where he has lived for many years. His half-hour round table hosts the most unique and eccentric international news personalities you're likely to find — Jimmy Dore has put in an appearance or two. Lavelle must have one hell of a rolodex.
Tonight’s very entertaining Roundtable, broadcast from Moscow, is titled Lavell's guests are Russian political analyst Dmitry Babich (very smart and very sweet): Alexander Mercouris, British Editor of The Duran (a dry wit that defies description), and Don DeBar, a New York antiwar journalist and syndicated host of CPR Radio News.
So, what is the takeaway from this international discussion of the Mueller Report?
For me, one of the funniest bits came early in the show, when the discussion turned to the suspected crimes that sparked the special investigation, I hadn’t realized how cartoonish and absurd they must sound to the world until Dmitry Babich read them aloud. His commentary cracked me up. They also had fun with some of the redacted material from the newly released report. Their reaction to the persecution of General Michael Flynn was quite animated. It's not the first time I've heard that Flynn was doing precisely what his job demanded of him. So, the deep irony of the charges brought against him by lesser men found a particular resonance with the Roundtable.
One point of mystification for the Roundtable was that the Mueller Report was almost entirely focused on the Obstruction charges, and there was very little on Donald Trump's alleged collusion with Russia. “Did they forget what they have been investigating for the past two-and-a-half years?” asks Lavelle. “Shouldn’t there at least be an apology to the American people?” (I suspect Mueller knew before he started that Trump was not colluding, and didn't waste his time. Besides, that investigation might expose the FISA warrant.)
I was also amused that the Roundtable ran into the same dilemma that we do when researching actual facts and evidence in the case. The charges always fall apart due to the lack of evidence — true even from the very beginning. So, whenever the exoneration of Trump is the only logical conclusion, Lavelle would pull back defensively and say to the audience, “Look, it’s not that we think Donald Trump is a good guy. He’s done many bad things throughout the world. We're only talking about the Rule of Law, not about Trump.” Sound familiar? Even these journalists fear the accusations and backlash that come as a result of the manufactured hysteria of the Russia Hoax.
The Roundtable seemed completely bewildered by another aspect of the Mueller Report: The investigation into the most important parts of the case were omitted. Was this Muller’s entire investigative work product? Did he fail to investigate the key elements that were driving the charges that were made? The first elephant in the room, of course, was CrowdStrike and its shady reputation. Where are the logs from the DNC servers? Where is the evidence showing that a cyber crime had been committed? And where are the forensics analyzing that evidence, they wondered? There was, of course, never any evidence.
And for heavens sake, where is the critical investigation of the Steele dossier group? This was the entire basis for at least some of the wiretapping of Trump's Presidential campaign. Why weren’t the FISA Warrants included in the Report. Was information from the ensuing wiretaps passed on to the DNC or the Clinton campaign?
And why, the Roundtable wanted to know, did the media lash out so viciously at Attorney General Barr, after he ended his press conference? Was it because he mentioning that the DOJ would now investigate the rest of the story to complete the case archive?
The Roundtable discussion of this news event struck me as unusual. Then I realized I had never seen the Russia Hoax discussed in a responsible way by news media professionals — while employing critical thinking. It was pleasently disorienting, and that's when I decided to post the show here.
Crosstalk ends with a few surprises of its own. For example, what are the real costs of the Russia Hoax to the rest of the world? The costs to Europe and Russia alone exceed $100 billion dollars. How will that be handled, I wondered?
I’ll leave the rest for those who choose to watch the show.