Friday, March 24, 2017

Be Careful What You Wish For

Democrats are up in arms that Russia interfered in our last election. Ah, now that they were targeted they complain.

But this is not just amusing. Democratic outrage about pro-Russia attitudes will just include far more of them in the Russian blast radius. And it could actually contribute to a war atmosphere.

I have not been up in arms over the Russian propaganda effort. I don't like it. I want it stopped. But all my adult life I've seen the Russians doing this--generally to harm Republican who were seen by Russians (of the Soviet variety, too) and Democrats as unduly hostile to the Soviet Union/Russia.

Note the testimony of Admiral Rogers in this week's testimony by FBI director Comey and Rogers, head of the NSA, to the House Intelligence Committee:

[Representative] WENSTRUP: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Thank you gentlemen for being here, I appreciate your endurance in this effort today. One question, how long has Russia or the Soviet Union been interfering or attempting to interfere with our election process?

ROGERS: In the report we've feebly (ph) talked about, we have seen this kind of behavior to some degree attempting to influence outcomes for decades.


WENSTRUP: Going back to -- going back the Soviet Union...

ROGERS: Right. Not to the same level necessary, but the basic trend has been there. [emphasis added]

Yes, technology has made the Russian effort more widespread (in both gathering information by hacking emails and by spreading propaganda) and visible to us. But 2016 was nothing new.

But now that the Russians hit a Democrat, liberals have discovered their inner Cold Warrior.

Which, given that this isn't new but just new to them, is dangerous given how Democrats are screaming for Russian blood:

"Just this morning on the news, I forget who it was, but there was someone who said that the Russian efforts in the U.S. election was an 'act of war,' Army Chief of Staff Mark Milley said during New America's Future of War Conference Tuesday morning. "That's pretty strong language, and, if it's an act of war, then you've got to start thinking of your response to that sort of thing. So, I would caution people about use of the term 'war' and make sure that we're clear-eyed about what war is and what it isn't."

The Army, which would bleed the most in a war with Russia, has reason to be wary of having to back Democratic rage with war when the Army knows damn well that when the going gets tough, Democrats will get going to war crimes accusations against our soldiers and calls to lose the war they once backed with indignant fury. There is no lack of flexibility in their ranks.

What Russia did--and has done even before the Democrats noticed it (and say, will the Left condemn Green candidate Jill Stein and other leftists for appearing on Russian propaganda so often?)--should be blocked. But it is not an act of war. Take a deep breath.

Not that I think Russia's intervention in 2016 worked to influence voters, let alone hack our election systems. I think the highly visible Russian effort (it's almost as if the Russians wanted to be discovered, eh?) was a spectacular failure, in fact, because it was likely designed to harm the assumed winner Clinton and highlight America as a corrupt place with faux democracy unworthy of emulating that elevated Clinton rather than the deserving underdog Trump to the White House.

But I do find it funny that Democrats are suddenly watching Doctor Strangelove as a how-to manual.

Welcome to the anti-Russian party, guys. By all means, let's block the Russian propaganda effort and respond in that arena. Perhaps we can broaden the search for Russians under Republican beds into an inquiry into Democratic flexibility for Russian objectives, eh?

But ease back on the war talk even though it hurts to be on the receiving end of this long-standing propaganda effort that you got used to benefiting from.