The Russia watchRussia chips away at Western notion of truth; GOP & “Russia Hoax”; Russia & Yellow Vest riots, and more

Published 11 December 2018

•  Agents of doubt

•  Republicans must reject “Russia Hoax” conspiracies and examine the evidence

•  Totally clears the president’? What those Cohen and Manafort filings really say

•  Russia’s disinformation chief takes fresh aim at America

·  Is Russia a U.S.“adversary” or just a “competitor”?

·  Czech security service says Russia behind cyber attacks on ministry

·  Putin’s “American” oligarch privately boasted of Trump ties. Then he lost billions (

·  Russia hack ‘bid to discredit’ UK anti-disinformation campaign - Foreign Office

·  France to probe possible Russian influence on Yellow Vest riots

Agents of doubt (Joby Warrick and Anton Troianovski, Washington Post)
How a powerful Russian propaganda machine chips away at Western notions of truth

Republicans must reject “Russia Hoax” conspiracies and examine the evidence (David French, National Review)
It’s time to put a conspiracy theory to rest. It’s time to debunk a hoax. The conspiracy theory goes like this: The Trump-Russia investigation from its inception represented an attempt by Hillary Clinton’s allies in the federal government to intervene in the election to help Clinton. Everything that has followed is thus the fruit of a poisonous tree of efforts to entrap or ensnare innocent, unsuspecting Trump-campaign officials or Trump allies, with a prosecutor bent on “manufacturing” process crimes through various “perjury traps” and other nefarious means.
Like many conspiracy theories, it gains credibility by referencing examples of actual troubling behavior (for example, the circumstances surrounding the Carter Page FISA warrant and the creation of the Steele dossier require further scrutiny), but it has from its inception suffered from fatal flaws. And now, as the sheer scale of the Trump team’s contacts with Russia starts to emerge, it’s time to relegate the “Russia hoax” theory to the dustbin of political history.
The idea that the FBI used the Russia investigation to intervene in the election to hurt Trump and help Clinton has always strained credulity. After all, the Russia investigation remained secret during the election while the FBI not only publicly reopened the Hillary email investigation, it also confirmed the existence of an FBI investigation into the Clinton Foundation and exposed rifts with the Obama Department of Justice — casting the FBI as heroically resisting Obama-administration pressure to avoid any “overt steps” in the Clinton Foundation investigation during the campaign.
Publicly the FBI torpedoed Clinton. Privately it investigated the Trump campaign. (Cont.)