Russia

We Saw This Russiagate Bombshell Coming

As we said in our 2017 column, General Mike Flynn’s Only Crime, Flynn’s only crime was being a truth-teller about Obama’s failures. We urge Judge Sullivan to grant attorney Sidney Powell’s motion on behalf of General Mike Flynn, to expose the conspiracy against him and President Trump and, for the government’s egregious conduct in the matter, to dismiss the entire case against General Flynn.

New report details Comey plan to ambush Trump with Moscow sex allegation

Byron York, Washington Examiner

The new IG report is devastating for Comey. His leak of other materials from his memos — sensitive law enforcement material from an ongoing investigation — violated Justice Department and FBI policies, as well as Comey's own FBI employment agreement, the inspector general wrote. More broadly, Comey set a "dangerous example" for all FBI employees. If other bureau officials acted similarly, the report said, "the FBI would be unable to dispatch its law enforcement duties properly." So Comey did much more than just the "Hoover-esque" gambit of January 2017. The full story of his actions, even in this small part of the Trump-Russia affair, will cast a long shadow over his reputation.

A Brief History of Election Meddling

Andrew C. McCarthy, National Review

Putin being a canny strongman, the point was to sow discord and make life difficult for what he fully expected would be the new Clinton administration. There are good reasons to doubt the sincerity of assurances by Kremlin-tied operatives that Putin wanted Trump to win. Russia’s modus operandi in the West is to agitate minority factions it believes are going to lose — whether it would prefer to see them to win or not. That is how Moscow promotes strife and makes it more difficult for the incumbent government to pursue its interests. But even if we accept at face value Russian assertions that Putin wanted Trump to win, there is no reason to think Putin believed Trump would win.

Yes, China is the Greater Menace

Patrick J. Buchanan, The American Conservative

For three years, the U.S. establishment has not ceased to howl about Russia’s theft of emails of the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign. Yet the greatest cybercrime of the century was Beijing’s theft in 2014 of the personnel files of 22 million applicants and employees of the U.S. government, many of them holding top-secret clearances. Undeniably, Russia is a rival. But Putin’s economy is the size of Italy’s while China’s economy challenges our own. And China’s population is 10 times that of Russia, and four times that of the USA. Manifestly, China is the greater menace. This issue is likely to decide the destiny of our relations and the future of Asia, if not the world.

Sen. Grassley Closing In On Stefan Halper

Halper, who it looks to us helped the Obama-era FBI spy on the Trump campaign, was paid more than $1 million by a U.S. agency for research papers of dubious value. We urge Sen. Grassley to follow whatever clues are revealed up the food chain to the Obama White House if that’s where they lead.

Dear Citizen Collusion Truther—You Own This, Too

Julie Kelly, American Greatness

I know you still have hope that the full Mueller report will contain some far-fetched nugget of collusion evidence to vindicate your gullibility/ignorance/foolishness. You’ve already moved the goalposts to an imaginary crime of obstruction of justice even though there was no underlying crime to obstruct. History will not be kind to the Trump-Russia collusion truthers in Congress, the expert class, Hollywood, and the media. But history also shouldn’t forget the role that you, Citizen Collusion Truther, played in this. No matter how many tweets and Facebook posts you delete, it cannot erase your complicit stupidity in this scandal.

When a new energy revolution makes the Russians nervous

Monica Crowley, Washington Times

Unlike in the United States and West where the left has made fossil fuels a dirty word, in Azerbaijan they are a point of pride because they are helping to lift a nation out of crushing socialist poverty and into economic prosperity. Given Turkey’s regressive shift to authoritarianism and Islamism, Azerbaijan is well-positioned to supplant it as the leading secular Muslim-majority nation. This locus of the new Silk Road seems tailor-made for that leadership role — and more than ready for it.

Golan Heights Announcement: Trump’s Strategic Vision And Israel

This is another bold act of presidential leadership in support of one of America’s most important allies, Israel.  The president recognized that Israel’s control of the Golan Heights is the reality, and this is not going to change.  President Trump also sent a signal to Iran that the U.S. will not tolerate it using Syria as a platform to threaten Israel’s security.” Fred Fleitz, President and CEO of the Center for Security Policy.

On Syria Donald Trump Finally Acts Like President Trump

Washington’s overall objective should be to bring peace to America, not micro-manage other nations’ conflicts. Washington policymakers come up with long lists of objectives which are not worth the cost, in this case essentially permanent war. Withdrawal from Syria is long overdue.

Congressional Commission Demands More Wasteful Spending on War

A congressional commission found America is weak, isolated, beleaguered, and endangered. Military spending must be greatly increased or Washington will lose its ability to run the world. In which case a new Dark Age may envelop the earth.

Trump Is Both Right And Wrong On Syria Pullout

President Trump is right, there is little value in staying in Syria if Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Iraq are prepared to mop-up the scattered remnants of ISIS, but the President is wrong, and deeply so, if he thinks that killing a few thousand jihadis and retaking some desolate ground in the Middle East ends the war political Islam, and Iran in particular, have declared on the West.

Can America Fight Two Cold Wars at Once?

Patrick J. Buchanan, The American Conservative

Should we cut back on our treaty commitments, terminating U.S. war guarantees until they comport with what are true vital U.S. interests? Should we, faced with two great power adversaries, do as Nixon did and seek to separate them? If, however, we conclude, as this city seems to be concluding, that the long-term threat to U.S. interests is China, not Putin's Russia, President Trump cannot continue a trade relationship that provides the Communist Party of Xi Jinping with a yearly $400 billion trade surplus. For that would constitute a policy of almost suicidal appeasement.

Another Reason for a Compromise with Russia over Ukraine

The latest crisis in the relationship between Russia and Ukraine thankfully has ebbed. But it has offered another powerful reminder why the latter should not be inducted into NATO. Washington has nothing at stake worth getting into a war between the two countries.

A New Era for the China-Russia-U.S. Triangle

Victor Davis Hanson, National Review

Russia certainly has no interest in seeing in its neighborhood a nuclear Iran or an unhinged nuclear North Korea — or having disputes with a Chinese colossus along its 2,600-mile shared border. American appeasement, trade concessions, and extraordinary Chinese wealth did not make China a better global citizen. Perhaps stronger U.S. pushback, supported by an array of Asian allies and a conniving Russia, might.

Russia Gives Up on Trump and the West

Patrick J. Buchanan, The American Conservative

Our share of the global economy is much shrunken from Reagan's time. Our deficit is approaching $1 trillion. Our debt is surging toward 100 percent of GDP. Entitlements are consuming our national wealth. We are committed to containing the two other greatest powers, Russia and China. We are tied down militarily in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen, with the War Party beating the drums for another and larger war — with Iran. And we are sanctioning adversaries and allies for not following our leadership of the West and the world. In looking at America's global commitments, greatly expanded since our Cold War victory, one word come to mind: unsustainable.

Bring U.S. Forces Home from Syria

The Trump administration appears to share the belief of prior administrations that it can transform the Middle East in America’s image. But Washington’s record in the Middle East is catastrophic. It is time to bring home America’s troops.

Make summits great again, Mr. President

Editors, Washington Examiner

Trump must remember that his power reaches far beyond words. He commands the power to make life much better or worse for adversaries. He also has the responsibility to provide security for us and our allies. But by offering summits profligately without expectations of what should come before or after, Trump detaches his power from the purpose of summits. In doing so, he makes effective diplomacy more unlikely.

Understanding Trump’s Goals And Strategy On Trade

Trump’s plan to seek freer, fairer, and more reciprocal trade when the United States is in a strong, and growing stronger, economic position is in the best interest of America’s taxpayers, producers, consumers and national security. Trump is playing a long game that in the end will benefit all American interests.

Putin’s ‘Evil Empire’? Sort of a Sad Overstatement

Patrick J. Buchanan, The American Conservative

Russia’s regime is no longer Communist. The ideology that drove its imperialism is dead. There are parties, demonstrations and dissidents in Russia, and an Orthodox faith that is alive and promoted by Putin. Where, today, is there a vital U.S. interest imperiled by Putin? Better to jaw-jaw, than war-war, said Churchill. He was right, as is President Trump to keep talking to Putin—right through the Russophobia rampant in this city.

Russianism

Victor Davis Hanson, National Review

Russianism is a psychological malady in which furor at Donald Trump’s election victory and presidency — and the ensuing depression resulting from the inability to abort it — finds release through fixation on Russia. Progressives need a scapegoat to blame for their disastrous election loss in 2016 and their lack of a persuasive agenda, which, hand-in-glove, turned over the Congress, the presidency, and the Supreme Court to progressives’ worst nightmare.