Perspective: The Russia connectionThe National Security Threat of Peddling Russian Disinformation

Published 2 December 2019

The impeachment inquiry by the U.S. House Intelligence Committee has served as a forum for efforts by President Trump, Rudi Giuliani, and some GOP lawmakers to spread the lie fabricated by the Russian intelligence services that the interference in the 2016 U.S. election was not done by Russia to help Trump – but was carried out by Ukraine to Help Hillary Clinton! This Kremlin-fabricated canard has been thoroughly investigated by the U.S. intelligence community, and totally debunked. “Distrust is now being sown by American officials against the same government these officials purport to represent,” Cipher Brief writes.

The impeachment inquiry by the U.S. House Intelligence Committee has served as a forum for efforts by President Trump, Rudi Giuliani, and some GOP lawmakers to spread the canard fabricated by the Russian intelligence services that the interference in the 2016 U.S. election was not done by Russia to help Trump – but was carried out by Ukraine to Help Hillary Clinton! This Kremlin-fabricated lie has been thoroughly investigated by the U.S. intelligence community, and totally debunked. Two former Trump administration NSC officials called this Kremlin-peddled conspiracy theory for what it is: Tom Bossert described it as a “totally debunked bogus claim,” and Fiona Hill described it as a “fictional narrative.”

Cipher Brief spreading the willingness to propagate Russian propaganda lies is dangerous game to play. “While the relentless repetition of Moscow’s propaganda by American officials is political in nature and intent—it is part of the President’s impeachment defense, one in which the goal is to cast doubt over the entirety of the United States civil service.”

Cipher Brief adds:

Distrust is now being sown by American officials against the same government these officials purport to represent. Conspiracies of a ‘Deep State’ have grown so pervasive that sitting members of Congress and officials in the White House have insinuated that Russia is a more trusted entity than certain agencies within the U.S. government. The continued success of Russia’s campaign to influence the 2016 U.S. elections cannot be overstated, as Moscow has enjoyed an unprecedented return on its investment. The Kremlin has determined that operations in the gray zone and hybrid actions designed to corrode democratic institutions can be more effective than kinetic actions against Western interests. When influence operations are aided by Western government officials, unwitting or otherwise, it serves as a force multiplier beyond what most of Putin’s inner circle could have ever hoped for. As the U.S. government continues to cannibalize itself and lay bare the dysfunction inherent in its domestic political system, Russia will look on with interest and seek to adapt new tactics, techniques, and procedures to further cripple Western alliances, while also driving a wedge between distinct populations of the American body politic.

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