By, James Sherrod
James can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions and comments.
From involvement in each others civil wars to the notoriously tense Potsdam Conference, the United States and Russia have a long history of tension with one another. When the unlikely alliance against a common enemy during World War II ended, The Cold War began. By the Grace of God and severe battle fatigue following the Second Great War, these tensions did not give way to another physical War. However, times are different now and tensions are high again. Is War still avoidable between these clashing giants?
There was a time when Martin Luther King was suspected to be a communist threat, or elementary schools practicing atom bomb drills may seem hard to imagine, but fear of Russia is far from gone in the United States. Every main stream media outlet as well government officials from the highest positions have made statements about the Russian Government and that they directed an open interfering with the United States presidential election. From the Podesta emails to suggestions that actual voting machines were hacked, claims of Russian meddling with the United States are endless. So where does this narrative come from and what are the actual claims being made?
Well, the major claim being made is that the Russian Government hacked the Democratic National Committee and the personal/professional email account of John Podesta, Hilary Clinton’s campaign manager. The narrative being spun by the MSM and the Democrats being that the Russian cyberattack was designed to sway the election towards Donald Trump. This they accomplished by airing out Hillary Clinton’s dirty laundry. The evidence to support this is a 13 page document from the Department of Homeland Security stating that the attack is of similar nature to attacks committed by Russia in the past. Sounds convincing, but take a closer look and this might just be evidence that Russia had nothing to do with it all. According to cyber-security experts like John McAfee and intelligence agencies such as the CIA, its is very easy to make a cyber-attack look like some else was behind it.
Lets take a look at this a different way.
Imagine you have two pets, a cat and a dog. You come home from work and your dirty laundry has been strewn all over the house for everyone to see. The only evidence of the culprit is a note that reads “The cat did it”. Would the cat really make it that obvious that it committed the crime?
This scenario is obviously silly, but it does illustrate the issue. Would the Russian Government, arguably the one of the most advanced nations in the world when it comes to cyber espionage, really attack the DNC and virtually sign their name at the bottom? Not likely. So how do we know who aired out Clinton’s dirty laundry? Unfortunately, it would be very difficult to find the culprit. The method of attack is outdated and widely available. This means that any capable Foreign Government (including our own), or any capable individual could be responsible.
So, if it is not clear who the culprit was and it seems likely that it was not the Russian Government then why is the main stream media and the United States intelligence community pointing fingers at Russia? Well for one, there is a concerted effort on behalf of the media and members of the DNC to distract the public from the monumentally damning content of the leaked emails. I cannot overstate how important it is for the every American voter to familiarize themselves with the content. The idea that the ruling political party would rig a primary in favor of a particular candidate is, by definition, a direct threat to democracy.
However, the reason the US intelligence community would like to blame the Russian Government could be much more serious. What if the Cold War never ended? In Fact, the situation has remained very much unchanged. There was a moment in the Cold War in which both nations possessed atomic bombs but lacked the ability to defend against such a weapon. Thankfully, the fear of nuclear annihilation helped encourage both nations to refuse to use such weapons against one another. Now, 48 years after the start of the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty, a new weapon of mass destruction fuels the tension between the US and Russia. Each nation now possesses the digital weaponry capable of devastation to the infrastructure of one another. However, just like with the atomic-bomb, neither nation has the ability to effectively defend against such an attack.
War seems inevitable as Russia continues to annex the Ukraine, and the US continues to advance its militarily toward the Russian boarder. Now add the fact that both nations have been aggressively portraying the other as the aggressor and we find ourselves in a very dangerous position. With propaganda backed by classified information how can we the people accurately direct our government? Some of the only truthful words from either Government came from president Trump when he suggested that neither country is innocent.
So what do we do?
It is important for both the US public and the citizens of Russia to see past the narrative being pushed by their governments. We need to relentlessly pursue the truth. The only way we can make the best decisions possible is with the most accurate information we can find. Speaking as an American, our Government owes us factual information to support any claims that incite tension with other nations. Unfortunately, our leaders have failed to do this on nearly every occasion so we must do our best to understand the situation with the information we have. It may not be easy to find the truth, but the reward may very well be peace instead of war.