from a comment a skeptic of which I’m responding to…
Russian interference in the 2016 election may not have involved corruption and collaboration, but it was and remains a threat to the stability of the United States. tRump’s policies, tweets, and loose talk contribute to the break-down of our society whether he is in cahoots with the Russian’s or not.
The only thing I ever heard Maddow get right is that Putin could have convinced Trump to do something unbeknownst to anyone [thanks, Jeremy Scahill]. OK, the empty de-bugged room…but does Putin know that much English? Doesn’t look like it from the Oliver Stone interviews
OR NOT…yep, or not.
But whether or not their influence amounted to much, really we are lucky to figure out what some hackers [IRA in Russia my “best” guess] were trying to do. AFAICS it comes under PR science (“research”). It didn’t amount to a hill of beans next to voter suppression, crosscheck, etc.
Just to get the lay of the land, though, ya gotta ask yourself…why? Putin acted pretty rationally in Syria, and one’s tempted to forget the mechinations of oil hegemonies.
from “The Most Damaging Election Disinformation Campaign Came From Donald Trump, Not Russia” by Bruce Schneier and Henry Farrell 11/19/18…
"When a Russia-friendly government in Ukraine collapsed due to popular protests, Russia tried to destabilize new, democratic elections by hacking the system through which the election results would be announced. The clear intention was to discredit the election results by announcing fake voting numbers that would throw public discussion into disarray.>
"This attack on public confidence in election results was thwarted at the last moment. Even so, it provided the model for a new kind of attack. Hackers don’t have to secretly alter people’s votes to affect elections. All they need to do is to damage public confidence that the votes were counted fairly. As researchers have argued, ‘simply put, the attacker might not care who wins; the losing side believing that the election was stolen from them may be equally, if not more, valuable.’ ” The Most Damaging Election Disinformation Campaign Came From Donald Trump, Not Russia https://www.schneier.com/essays/archives/2018/11/the_most_damaging_el.html
[ “democratic elections” pushing it a little given NED’s involvement]
from from “We did Trump to Ourselves and Should Own up to It; Mueller and Putin can’t Save US” by Juan cole 3/25/19 [interesting title] …
"All this is not to say that Putin did not try to put Trump in. He did. The St. Petersburg troll farms are real, and Mueller charged them. Whether Putin’s efforts were effective is something for a Big Data specialist to address. I personally think the Russian efforts had an effect at the margins in states like Michigan and Wisconsin, which were key to Trump’s victory. They aimed to depress the Black vote by slamming Clinton, and may have succeeded. They aimed at convincing white workers that she is an al-Qaeda sympathizer, and may have succeeded. But that’s just my educated guess. The high-powered data specialists may eventually be able to come to a more rigorous conclusion.
“But I think the Russians were only one Trump backer abroad. It seems clear that the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia were also plumping for Trump. In fact, the UAE introduced Trump operatives to a major Russian banker close to Putin.” https://www.juancole.com/2019/03/ourselves-should-mueller.html
ALL ROADS LEAD TO OIL?
Yep, whether or not their influence amounted to much, if Russia wanted Trump in, ya gotta ask…why? Mostly IMO due to not wanting WWIII over Ukraine. Been thinking about another reason. Partnering with Exxon + US crude oil shipped east (and liquid natural gas shipped east too…the latter derived to a big extrent currently from FRACKING). Easy to search Russian arctic LNG arriving in Boston. Not so easy to search US LNG going east, though US crude oil going east gets results pretty quickly (2nd link below). I read about one Russian billionaire tied to a firm involved in shipping the stuff from north america east…LNG IIRC.