Now that President-Elect Trump is not going along with the new narrative of “Russian Interference” in the election – we may be heading for a showdown. Not between the U.S.and Russia, but rather between the Trump administration and the Intelligence Community/Media that are apparently pushing that storyline as gospel. The Trump transition team, though, is pushing back fast and hard. They appear to know more details from the report than have been leaked to the media, and they are not supportive of the assertion of Russia being behind the hacking. In fact, the narrative being promulgated by the Trump team is insider-hacking from disgruntled members of the DNC. If you’ll recall, the hacking started during the Primary fight between Clinton and Bernie Sanders, detailing how the DNC had undermined and hobbled Sanders at every opportunity to give Clinton the nomination. The timing would certainly lend credence to the notion that it was an angry Sanders supporter with the DNC that leaked the information – not a foreign government that was looking to disrupt the election process.
The problem with secretive agencies (by design) like the CIA, is that the notion of certainty is elusive. In fact, John Bolton has put forth the idea that if there was indeed Russian ‘fingerprints’ on the breach, then it might very well be a ‘false flag’ operation -wherein the real hacker attempts to ‘frame’ a particular person or nation. As evidence, he points to the repeated breaches of Hillary Clintons server when she was Secretary of State. During the forensic examination of the data, the intelligence community was unable to find any evidence of Russian involvement. That doesn’t mean they weren’t – it means that if they were involved, they were good enough to remove any trace of their involvement. Which leaves one to wonder, why would they NOT hack her server, which unquestionably would be a juicier target than the DNC? If they did hack her server, why were they competent enough to not leave a trace, then leave fingerprints on the DNC? Something doesn’t add up and that’s where (I think) the Trump team is having a difficult time simply accepting their conclusions at face value.
There was a great Op/Ed piece in the Wall Street journal the other day that really brought to light another point I didn’t realize. The DNC hack and the John Podesta email hack were separate events. I would argue that that Podesta emails were far more valuable to the Trump campaign then the DNC hack, which was more disruptive internally at the DNC than over the course of the general election. No one has said definitively who hacked Podesta and no testimony has been given fingering Russia.
Bottom line at this point in time is that (a) this is purely subjective, (b) it’s attributed to mostly ‘anonymous’ sources, (c) the full report has not been publically seen and (d) the conclusions being drawn (Putin wanting Trump to win the election over Clinton) are ridiculous and spurious at best. Want to convince me? Show me the smoking gun….otherwise, keep your assertions to yourself – they do more harm than good, especially if they are wrong.