America, Russia…

It’s true that a well-ordered society would not be governed by (an unrepentent) former KGB agent. It’s just as true that a well-ordered society would not be governed by a bigoted, autocratic, dissolute liar. Yet here we are, and there they are. .@tolokno was imprisoned for speaking out against Vladimir Putin’s presidency in Russia. She […]

Russian Journalist Yevgenia Albats on Putin

Concern about Putin’s interference in our elections springs from one’s love for American democracy. I’ve mentioned before the fine Frontline series on Putin, entitled Putin’s Revenge (Parts 1 and 2 are online). The series also includes the full interviews with those who appeared in the two-part program. In the interview above, Russian journalist Yevgenia Albats talks […]

The Erosion of Political Norms (Concluding Part 4 in a Series)

More than one small town has struggled for years under the debilitating influence of political & economic conflicts of interest, misguided priorities, and dodgy or grandiose claims. These conditions where those that  That Which Paved the Way for Trumpism. Those locally who carried on this way made Trumpism more likely, the way a moderate illness might weaken […]

Committee to Investigate Russia: ‘This is No Movie Script’

In the video above, Morgan Freeman reminds Americans that Russian interference in our electoral process is ‘no movie script’; Vladimir Putin is a dictator, murderer, and inveterate enemy of America and our democratic traditions. The newly-formed Committee to Investigate Russia (https://investigaterussia.org) made its début yesterday. The CIR is a nonpartisan group – with both conservative, liberal, […]

Film: Icarus

When Bryan Fogel sets out to uncover the truth about doping in sports, a chance meeting with a Russian scientist transforms his story from a personal experiment into a geopolitical thriller involving dirty urine, unexplained death and Olympic Gold-exposing the biggest scandal in sports history. Readers who have Netflix can catch Icarus, a documentary that […]

Tracking Putin’s Propaganda on Twitter

Over at the Alliance for Securing Democracy, they’ve a Dashboard for Tracking Russian Propaganda on Twitter. It’s called Hamilton 68, after No. 68 of the Federalist Papers, in which Hamilton (writing pseudonymously as Publius) considers the danger of foreign interference in American elections (“These most deadly adversaries of republican government, might naturally have been expected to […]

‘Very Brazen About It’

In the video above, Dr. Sarah Kendzior describes the brazen nature of autocracy: not merely does an autocrat flaunt norms, but he does so to remind others of his power, and to attempt to instill in normal, freedom-loving people a feeling of hopelessness in the face of power aberrantly exercised. In response to these tactics, […]

The Fellow Travelers

Jeremy Peters nicely describes the descent of far too many into mere fellow travelers for Putin, a dictator, imperialist, and murderer (Peters is far too mild about Putin, but he’s ably identified the self-hating Americans who support Russian’s dictator, and some of whom are perhaps even fifth columnists for Russia): WASHINGTON — Years before the […]

Trump Uses the Same Old Russia Excuses

For more on how Trump sows fear, uncertainty, or doubt to evade simple, direct questions, see David Graham’s The Trump Uncertainty Principle @ The Atlantic (“When Trump wants to rebut a charge, he seldom flatly denies it. Instead, he generally prefers to sow doubt, skillfully stressing uncertainties to obfuscate and muddy the issue.”) One hears […]

‘What Putin’s team is probably telling him about Trump’

Michael Morell, former deputy director of the CIA from 2010 to 2013 and twice acting director, and Samantha Vinograd of the National Security Council staff from 2009 to 2013, speculate from experience on What Putin’s team is probably telling him about Trump: This is a speculative account of a memo that Russian President Vladi­mir Putin’s national […]

Rubin & Kendzior on Trump-Russia

Jennifer Rubin and Sarah Kendzior offer complimentary observations on Trump-Russia, that compound word for the evident association between Trump and Putin’s authoritarian state. Rubin’s remarks are from yesterday, Kendzior’s from May 20th. Rubin asks, of Trump, Would a spy for Russia be acting any differently?: By whatever means, Russia has reaped unexpected and unparalleled benefits from […]