Russians Targeted Donald Trump with Fake News and Conspiracies

There are three legs to the Trump/Russia controversy stool:

  1. Russians meddled in our electoral process
  2. Trump’s ties to Russia
  3. Obama administration’s politicizing/leaking intelligence on Team Trump.

On March 30, 2017, Clint Watts, a former FBI agent and Russia expert, testified to Senator James Lankford (R, Oklahoma) that the Russians targeted Donald Trump with fake news and conspiracies at times they knew he was browsing/tweeting on-line.

Watts testified Donald Trump parroted the same fake news and conspiracies as known Russian propaganda outlets ‘Sputnik’ and ‘RT’ (election “rigged”, voter fraud, denying U.S. intelligence, Obama not a citizen, Ted Cruz not a citizen, etc.)

Watts:

“I can tell you right now, today, grey outlets that are Soviet pushing accounts Tweet at President Trump during high volumes when they know he’s on-line and they push conspiracy theories.” (1:48, in the below video).

During the campaign, people speculated that Trump’s conspiracy mongering might just be a showman’s shtick and/or throwing red meat to his fervent base –  but not any more.

Now we know this is who Trump is: a profoundly disordered man of low character who has a proclivity for believing in and spreading fake news and conspiracy theories.

The estimable Peter Wehner of the Ethics and Public Policy Center described Donald Trump as follows during an appearance on C-SPAN in the summer of 2016:

Peter Wehner - Comments on Trump on CSPAN 7-14-16

Now it appears Trump is deserving of another title for believing in and helping spread Russian fake news and conspiracies: ‘Useful Idiot‘.

Putin and his cronies are laughing at Trump and at us. I don’t think even Putin could have seen how wildly successful his espionage/active measures have been to roil and divide Americans and cause us to lose confidence in our democratic institutions.

There are a lot of bad actors in this story, and President Trump certainly has his share of the blame for this lamentable state of affairs.

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