15th February 2017
Scott Johnson at Powerline looks at the Trump/Russian kerfuffle.
Faceless bureaucrats in the intelligence and law enforcement community seek to take down the Trump administration on some pretext relating to Russia. That is my takeaway from the New York Times story “Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contacts With Russian Intelligence” by Michael Schmidt, Mark Mazzetti and Matt Apuzzo. The Times story appears to be an extension of the covert campaign waged to cashier Michael Flynn noted by Eli Lake (Bloomberg), Damon Linker (The Week) and John Podhoretz (New York Post).
The big Times story is linked by Drudge and full of incriminating innuendo. It is the innuendo that strikes me most forcibly as I read the story.
Even putting the innuendo to one side, the story’s three reporters are what literary critics call unreliable narrators. Here is their description of Trump’s sarcastic comment at the press conference late this past July in the course of the campaign (video below): “At one point last summer, Mr. Trump said at a campaign event that he hoped Russian intelligence services had stolen Hillary Clinton’s emails and would make them public.” That is a lie, not to put too fine a point on it.