After aggressively pushing the talking point for months that the Russian President Vladimir V. Putin endorsed Donald J. Trump for President of the United States -- and in fairness, with The Donald embracing words of praise from Putin in campaign speeches -- the mainstream media led by CNN has been forced to backtrack over the weekend. Speaking at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) to CNN pundit Fareed Zakaria, Putin clarified his remarks and accused (post)Western media of mis-translating or distorting his earlier statements.
Once again the Russian leader emphasized that Americans would choose their next President, while also pointing out that the U.S. Electoral College system makes it possible for the choice of a majority of American voters to not actually win:
What I Actually Said:
Putin Takes CNN's Fareed Zakaria to Task for Words "Lost in Translation"
Interestingly enough, while (post)Western media including the neocon Daily Beast and former NATO spokesmen like Ben Nimmo have accused Russia and Russian media of massively promoting the UK's Brexit from the European Union, Putin actually questioned the timing and agenda of Prime Minister David Cameron in Thursday's referendum, calling the UK vote 'blackmail' of the EU. After making these negative remarks about Cameron, Putin then refrained from saying pro-or-con exactly how he would vote on the subject if he were British. Here's the Iranian-state funded network Press TV's translation of Putin's rather complicated view of Brexit, which is definitely not that of frequent RT guest and UKIP leader Nigel Farage:
It remains to be seen if more voices in mainstream media will challenge the Democratic National Committee and the Atlantic Council (NATO think tank)-linked cyber security executive Dmitri Alperovitch of CrowdStrike to produce proof from their tracing of the 'hack'. Both the DNC and Alperovitch insist that the Democrats' servers were hacked by state-sponsored Russian cyber criminals linked to Moscow's security services. Donald Trump disputed Alperovitch's and the DNC's claims, suggesting that the DNC 'hacked themselves' to distract from Hillary's ongoing classified email scandal (and The Donald didn't have to add, the Obama Justice Department's efforts to cover it up on her campaign's behalf).
When it comes to media, few have joined Adam Johnson of leftist leaning website CommonDreams.org and a few cybersecurity specialists in questioning the attribution of the hack as well as the suspicious timing of announcing it, weeks after Trump all but locked up the GOP nomination and Hillary Clinton's surrogates turned their primary focus of attack onto The Donald. The Russia Analyst is certainly among the skeptics asking: if the DNC knew that its oppo research file on Mr. Trump had been stolen weeks ago, why did it wait for the conclusion of the GOP primary contest to announce this fact? For his part, Mr. Johnson had this to say:
Meanwhile, in the category of 'Russia is weaponizing everything' propaganda, the UK Guardian, once a respectable if leftist broadsheet, is now simply parroting British Ministry of Defense (Whitehall) talking points that the Russians hooligans who beat up English hooligans after the Euro2016 soccer match a week ago n Marseilles were members of Moscow's military or special services. Never mind how many of the Russian hooligans have long hair and tattoos distinctly uncharacteristic of Russia's soldiers or FSB agents, who needs any fact checking of whatever some single source in Whitehall says -- as Irish journalist Bryan Macdonald points out at RT.com, the Guardian just goes with it. The fact that the Guardian turned from a leftist outlet skeptical of those in power during the 2003 Iraq invasion to a hardcore pro-NATO and anti-Russia sheet, Macdonald suggests, may have something to do with its collapsing print circulation over the last decade.
ISIS Isn't 'USUS' or At Least Turkey/GCC-IS, ISIS = Crazy Ivan
Elsewhere Der Spiegel, perhaps to atone for its previous skepticism regarding previous NATO talking points or Atlantic Council sponsored Bellingcat BS flung at the Russians, is reporting that Germany's BND, NSA and France's DGSE have all concluded an ISIS 'CyberCaliphate' group is actually run by the Russian security services. John R. Schindler, the ex-NSA counterintelligence analyst turned in house Ft. Meade historian turned forced to resign Naval War College professor we've previously profiled here at RogueMoney, has the 'scoop':
It would appear the alternative media and specifically John B. Wells of Caravan to Midnight's catchy phrase 'ISIS is USis' is getting under the trans-Atlantic spooks' skin, as is the all too frequent use of the term 'false flag' online. Hence the sudden urgency of getting out the 'ISIS is Ivan' messaging.
Apparently the State Department's open hosting of Al-Qaeda allied Ahrar al Sham spokesmen and the neocon Daily Beast citing anonymous Al-CIA-eda backers at Langley grousing about the Pentagon not sharing their enthusiasm for arming Syrian Al-Qaeda plus the Secretary of State asking the Russians NOT to bomb Al-Nusra have taken their toll on Washington's credibility in the endless 'war on terror'. So too have 21stCenturyWire's revelations this past week that the Orlando shooter's alleged CIA asset Afghan-born father had a program on a California-based Dari-language satellite channel and knew many influential politicians, including Ed Royce (R-California) the Chairman of the House Foreign Relations Committee.
Throwing Whatever They Can at the Wall and Seeing What Sticks: #BlameRussia and #BlamePutin for the Refugee Crisis U.S. and NATO Allied GCC Jihadis Created
It would also seem that the Langley/MI6 crowd is angry that Russia's awesome 'propaganda machine' has exploited the immivasion crisis in Europe that NATO thus far has been doing nothing about, while blaming the Russians rather than hordes of Saudi and Turkish backed Salafist fanatics for forcing millions of Syrians to flee their country. Desperate to distract Europeans from the fact that it's the government of a NATO member state and U.S. ally against Assad Turkey which is blackmailing the EU for billions or else the migrant hordes will be unleashed, the Atlantic Council is drawing on its Scandinavian propagandists to insist Russia is actually the country threatening Europe with millions of 'refugees'.
The Atlantic Council mouthpiece Veli-Pekka Kivimaki of Bellingcat pushes this talking point even though the number of Syrians passing through northern Russia en route to the Eurasian country's borders with Finland and Norway is minuscule compared to the hundreds of thousands flowing through the Aegean and Mediterranean seas. That is, in the waters around southern Europe where NATO navies could have easily interdicted the refugee boats from Turkey or North Africa in support of the over-stretched Greek and Italian coast guards, but refused to intervene as late as February 2016. In response to the widely publicized but half-assed NATO mission implemented since then that will supposedly deter human smugglers operating off the Turkish coast, Foreign Affairs had this to say:
Conclusion: Watch Out for Evil Russian Hackers and 'Hybrid War' Ops Everywhere
At this point, we expect the hysterical bullshit regarding anything and everything the Russians allegedly did right up to making your neighbor stub his toe when he walks out for the morning paper to fly fast and furious in the next several weeks. Especially if the pro-Brexit side wins Thursday's referendum ahead of the early July NATO summit in Warsaw, Poland.
UPDATE 06/21/2016 11:30 p.m. EST
The Washington (Langley) (Com)Post has come out with an article on June 20 citing other cyber security firms which claim to have verified the DNC/Crowdstrike's tracing of the hack to Russian hackers. The Russian government has officially denied any responsibility and implied the Democrats' cyber security is sloppy, and RT put out the video embedded above.
Bulgarian-British run alternative media site Zerohedge has quoted 'Guccifer 2.0' the alleged hacker as saying he is a Romanian, and has nothing to do with Russia. However the ZH article also admits that 'Guccifer 2.0's Romanian language writing has some mistakes, which might imply a non-native speaker -- as in someone from Moldova who grew up with Russian as his native tongue and perhaps Romanian as a second language in the post-Soviet era. - JWS