Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Russia Election Influencing Strategy

 Published, Letter to the Editor, Daily Mountain Eagle, Jasper, AL Tuesday, May 31, 2017 

There is a general belief, including CIA Director Clapper's statement, "all U.S. intelligence agencies agree," the goal of the Russians was to elect Trump.  I disagree with this "conclusion" not on political reasons or collected data, but strategically: where are the Russians in this?
First reason, does the above "conclusion" answer whether Russians have a greater "reason" for Hillary or Trump to be President?  Russians care nothing about U.S. politics unless it affects them.  They care about rebuilding Russian national power to the status of the old Soviet Union.  In this election which candidate did the Russians perceive advantageous?  There must be a Russian goal for the tampering; knowing that goal is a better determiner in exposing "influencing" than collecting data proving Hillary or Trump.

Second reason, a Russian logic for election tampering for Hillary and not for Trump is because is she was touted as "Obama's third term."  This is based on the Obama foreign policy of withdrawal from conflict, which supports Russian Goals.  They would not want this o change, if given a choice they would prefer to act as they please.  The purpose of Russian election influencing would be U.S. non-interference.

Third reason, Hillary has political history, from problems as a Secretary of State to bad security judgments: with Trump its guesswork.  Additionally, the Democrats and the Left would limit Hillary with an unwillingness to support direct military action.  Trump will lead a party eager to militarily punish Russian wrongdoing.  The personalities, the history, the beliefs, the parties, and the peoples they represent give a clear reason why the Russians would "influence" the election for Hillary not Trump.

Strategically, the election tampering is a short-term goal, where a passive, weaken, non-aggressive, non-involved in foreign affairs U.S. nation helps Russia's long-term goal's.  The Russians would've chosen Hillary.    


Further Thoughts on Russian Strategy

Written two years later after continued investigation 02- 19, 2019

When the above letter was published on May 30, 2017 (Daily Mountain Eagle) I did not think that almost two years later the debate over collusion between Donald Trump and the Russians would remain unresolved.  Of course, I do understand the Democratic Party's political motivation for continuing the investigation.  At the same time I am surprised and disappointed that in all the debate neither proponents or opponents of Donald Trump  have looked at this in terms of Russian motives.  This should have been one of the first questions.

Any investigation into collusion ought first have been looked at in terms of a Russian strategy.  Russian goals, to be unopposed as they attempt to absorb more land, ought to have been paramount in deciding whether the Russian's would have chosen to assist candidate Clinton or Trump.  The Russians, like most every other nation in the world, have a stake in who will be the president of the United States.  This includes political and military support, financial aide, and trade status.  The reasons for this is endless.    

It would not surprise me that the Russians would have created the appearance of collusion no matter which candidate was elected.  To weaken the will of the United States to oppose Russian goals would be an ongoing strategy.  It would not surprise me that the Russians are still involved in political interference, and in contradictory directions, to create confusion on both sides of American politics, Democrat and Republican.  

This all suggests to me that Russian goals and strategies to achieve those goals would have been paramount in the Russian's deciding who to assist candidate Clinton or Trump.  This does not even require collusion to occur on the part of any individual but would be a fact of ongoing election interference at any level, state and federal.

As much as I did then when I was writing the piece I believe the Russians are laughing themselves silly at their strategic victory.  What I did not include in my discussion in my first letter, which is even more true now, after the election  the Russians would have every reason to continue their strategy in a variety of  different ways.  Whether their was collusion or not it is to Russian advantage to create that illusion that their was collusion.  And even if that strategy fails achieve some legal damage the incitement of internal conflict is already a win.  The Russians are probably already devising and implementing their next plans of attack.

The strategy has always been and will continue to be to weaken the United States, and targeting President Trump as corrupt is one method to achieve that.  It makes it so much easier that this Russian strategy dovetails with the goals of the Democrat Party.  Not only does this suspicion  weaken the office of President, and the Republican party that he represents, it calls into question the nation's integrity and moral status.  The Russians would know the left-leaning political proclivity of the American media and that with this news information would itself create immense internal division.  Among other reasons it was the difference between the two political parties and the media that would have informed them which candidate that they would want to win.

I do not doubt that after the election the Russians did their best to manufacture the suspicion that Trump colluded.  They are still doing this.  True strategic thinking would be to aim at creating as many conflicting stories as possible for the purpose of maximizing confusion.  Of course this strategy requires plausible deniability for the Russians, all the while looking guilty.  The denial itself is done strategically.  This is war by pure manipulation.  The goal is to weaken the opponent internally so they will be less able to function, and even more problematically when a crisis arises.   The more the Democrats and Republicans fight over this issue the greater the Russian strategic win.

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