The McCarthy-like witch-huntery is gaining momentum. Where it’s going is hard to gauge…but, where ever it is, it will get there fast. Currently in the media cross-hairs is Trump’s AG Jeff Sessions. He is accused of lying about talking to the Russian Ambassador when asked by the Senate, his defence being he didn’t speak to them about the election, which is how he understood the question. He contends that, as a Senator and member of the Armed Services Committee, it was not unusual for him to be contact with the Russian Ambassador’s office.
Essentially, unless you’re inclined to believe that a career politician who, in over 30 years in public office, never had a kind word to say about either Russia or the USSR has actually s been a deep cover agent for the past few decades, it seems like a minor semantic misunderstanding. It probably means nothing…as an issue in and of itself. As a chess move relating to the crazy media storm and intelligence leaks trying to undermine the new administration, it means a little more. But only a little.
The media have taken a pick-and-choose attitude to the related social media storm. Gleefully repeating the words of Claire McCaskill, a Democratic senator and fellow member of the ASC, who tweeted out:
I've been on the Armed Services Com for 10 years.No call or meeting w/Russian ambassador. Ever. Ambassadors call members of Foreign Rel Com.
— Claire McCaskill (@clairecmc) March 2, 2017
Unfortunately it took very little detective work to sniff out these, earlier tweets:
Today calls with British, Russian, and German Ambassadors re: Iran deal. #doingmyhomework
— Claire McCaskill (@clairecmc) August 6, 2015
Off to meeting w/Russian Ambassador. Upset about the arbitrary/cruel decision to end all US adoptions,even those in process.
— Claire McCaskill (@clairecmc) January 30, 2013
Ironically, McCaskill then tried to get around this on…you guessed it…a question of semantics.
This received some coverage, notably on CNN and in Business Insider, however The Guardian simply removed their embed of the original tweet, with no explanation, and made no comment on the other tweets.
There was very little media comment on this tweet either, where the AP directly quotes the House Intelligence Chairman on this issue, who couldn’t be more clear:
BREAKING: House Intelligence chairman: We still have no evidence of improper contacts with Russian officials.
— The Associated Press (@AP) March 2, 2017
Pretty hard to get around that one on semantics. Better to just ignore it.
I suppose the question becomes, does any of this really matter? Is this all just an elaborate sideshow to distract an increasingly impoverished civilian population? A method to spread discord and unrest? Or does the Trump administration pose any kind of real threat?
Either way, while this distraction and/or witch hunt (delete as appropriate) dominates the headlines, bigger and more important issues are being pushed backwards out of the public eye.
The Syrian army retook Palmyra yesterday…with barely a word spoken about it in the MSM. The US is taking a more and more active role in the conflict in Yemen…apparently, the illegal execution of foreign nationals is something for which even Donald Trump can escape criticism.