Finger-pointing

America’s Russian Hypocrisy

  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    The U.S. intelligence community under President Obama was quick to blame Russia for trying to manipulate the elections. But their report reveals problematic bias, the author argues, glossing over Americas own flawed history of interference.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • U.S. intelligence officials blamed Russia and its President Vladimir Putin for trying to influence the elections.
    • But the intelligence report is problematic and full of anti-Russian bias, the author argues.
    • Instead of pointing fingers, the U.S. should reflect on its own flawed history and the West try to understand Russia’s perspective.
  • Audio

    Audio

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People protest against Trump as electors gather to cast their votes for U.S. president at the Pennsylvania State Capitol in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Emotions run high in the U.S. over the alleged Russian influence in the presidential elections. But things might just not be as clear cut. Source: Reuters

I hate agreeing with Vladimir Putin, even a little. Russia’s president is dragging his country – the country of my birth – backwards, and falsely argues that violating international law is somehow good for Russians. But the hysterical response of Americans to the Kremlin’s alleged efforts to influence the U.S. presidential election has forced me to look at things from Putin’s perspective.

To be sure, the U.S. intelligence allegations that Russia disseminated fake news and released hacked emails to hurt Hillary Clinton’s chances against Donald Trump, are not baseless. It is certainly in Putin’s character to purloin secrets and create disinformation; he was a KGB operative, after all.

Likewise, the accusations that Putin is holding a dossier of compromising material on Trump, though uncorroborated, also ring true. It would make little sense for Russia to spare Trump, of all people, from its schemes. And, beyond Trump, Republican Party leaders must know that if Russia hacked the Democrats, their own servers must have been hacked, too.

 

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