President Trump’s commutation of Roger Stone’s jail sentence has brought the Russia collusion delusion back into the limelight.
Special prosecutor (and former FBI Director) Robert Mueller, the lawyer in charge of conducting an in-depth investigation into whether Trump colluded with the Russians to win the 2016 presidential election, immediately fired a salvo against Trump’s commutation in an op-ed defending his investigation that was published in the Washington Post.
Mueller’s op-ed was then followed by an op-ed by one of his senior prosecutors, Andrew Weismann, in yesterday’s New York Times, which called for summoning Stone before a grand jury to force him to tell the truth about why he lied. Weissmann’s idea is that if Stone fails to tell the truth again, he should again be prosecuted and punished for perjury, preferably after Trump is defeated in November.
What about Clapper?
Mueller and Weissmann can wax eloquent all they want about the importance of testifying truthfully to Congress or federal investigators. But their words ring hollow given what happened to James R. Clapper Jr., the former director of national intelligence. He knowingly, deliberately, and intentionally testified falsely to Congress about the mass secret surveillance that the NSA was conducting on the American people. U.S. prosecutors turned a blind eye toward his perjury and did nothing to indict or prosecute him. Why go after Stone (or, for that matter, Martha Stewart) and do nothing against Clapper?
The Russia collusion delusion
What is really going on here? It’s the Russia collusion delusion that is at the center of this entire controversy. Mueller, Weissmann, and their Inspector Clouseau cohorts were convinced from the beginning that there was a conspiracy between Donald Trump and the Russians to rig the U.S. presidential election in favor of Trump. Even worse, they, along with members of the FBI and the national-security establishment, obviously convinced themselves that as part of the deal, Trump may well have become an unregistered covert agent of the Russian government.
Anyone who thinks that the U.S. Cold War mindset ended with the dismantling of the Soviet Union in 1989 is loving in la la land. Sure, the Berlin Wall came crashing down, Soviet troops withdrew from Eastern Europe, and the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union dismantled. But the anti-Soviet, anti-Russian mindset that afflicted U.S. officials for 45 years, especially those in the national-security establishment, never disappeared. As long as Russia has maintained a sense of independence from U.S. control, it has continued to be considered a grave threat to U.S. “national security.”
The fact is that the U.S. national-security establishment — or what President Eisenhower referred to as the military-industrial-congressional complex — will never permit a U.S. president to establish normal and friendly relations with Russia. And any president who does so will automatically be considered suspect, just as Trump has been. If he goes too far in that direction, he runs the risk of being considered a grave threat to “national security.”
Kennedy: a threat to “national security?
That is, of course, what happened with President Kennedy. After the Cuban Missile Crisis, he made no bones about it. He threw the gauntlet down to the U.S. national security establishment. In his famous Peace Speech at American University 3 1/2 months before he was assassinated, he suddenly announced that he was declaring an end to the Cold War. He also stated that he intended to establish a relationship of peaceful co-existence with the Soviet Union and the communist world. He told the audience and the world that despite philosophical differences, there was no reason why America and Russia could not work together with a peaceful and friendly relationship. He then entered into secret personal negotiations to that end with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev.
As part of his plan, Kennedy announced a partial withdrawal of U.S. troops from Vietnam. He told aides that as soon as he won the 1964 election, he would pull out the rest. He also entered into a nuclear test-ban treaty with the Soviets. He proposed a joint trip to the moon, which would have meant sharing rocket technology with the Soviets. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what the next logical step was going to be — the dismantling of the Cold War apparatus and a restoration of a limited-government republic.
Imagine how all of that went over with the U.S. national-security establishment, which was already convinced that there was a communist conspiracy based in Moscow to take over the world, including the United States. The notion that the free world could live in peaceful harmony with the communist world was considered naive folly at best and treason at worst. In the eyes of the U.S. national security establishment, ending the Cold War, which likely would have led to the dismantling of the U.S. national security state, was equivalent to simply surrendering the United States to the communists.
After all, don’t forget that this was the very reason why the U.S. government was converted after World War II into a national-security state — to enable U.S. officials to exercise the same omnipotent, dark-side powers employed by the communists in order to prevent their supposed conspiracy from succeeding.
Don’t forget also that sympathy and empathy with communism or the Russians was precisely the reason U.S. national-security state officials initiated regime change operations against foreign presidents and prime ministers both before and after the Kennedy assassination: Mossadegh in Iran, Arbenz in Guatemala, Lumumba in Congo, Castro in Cuba, and Allende in Chile.
How could U.S. national-security state officials just ignore a U.S. president who suddenly had become a threat to national security, a much graver threat in fact than the foreign officials they had ousted from power in regime-change operations.
Given their conviction that Kennedy’s actions were going to result in a communist takeover of the United States, what were U.S. officials supposed to do — just let it happen? For all they knew, Kennedy had become a covert agent of the Soviets, just as U.S. officials in our time have become convinced that Trump became a covert agent of the Russians.
What Kennedy was doing was certainly not an impeachable offense, and so they couldn’t remove him from office that way, as they tried to do with Trump. Moreover, it was clear that Kennedy would almost certainly defeat Barry Goldwater in the 1964 election.
What to do? Follow the Constitution and let America fall to the communists? Or do here in the United States what had to be done in Iran, Guatemala, Congo, Cuba, and Chile to protect “national security”?
The Kennedy Autopsy by Jacob Hornberger
The Kennedy Autopsy 2: LBJ’s Role in the Assassination by Jacob Hornberger
Regime Change: The JFK Assassination by Jacob Hornberger
The CIA, Terrorism, and the Cold War: The Evil of the National Security State by Jacob Hornberger
CIA & JFK: The Secret Assassination Files by Jefferson Morley
“The National Security State and JFK,” a FFF conference featuring Oliver Stone and ten other speakers
“Altered History: Exposing Deceit and Deception in the JFK Assassination Medical Evidence,” a five-part video by Douglas P. Horne
“The JFK Assassination,” a video series by Jacob Hornberger