Masha Gessen, an American journalist originally from Russia and writer, who became one of the leading experts on Russia as well as ruthless and active critic of Vladimir Putin. Hesse lived in the US, in Russia; but being Jewish, a lesbian and a mother of three children, in 2013, she returned to the United States because of the atmosphere of increasing hatred towards the LGBT community, which arose in connection with the adoption of discriminatory laws.
For years, Hesse became the American media one of the most respected critics of the Kremlin by publishing a sharp anti-Putin articles and reviews in numerous publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Slate, Harper’s, and materials about political repressions in Russia to Intercept. She also sharply criticizes Donald trump. Shortly after the election, Hesse wrote: “trump the first President in my memory who was a candidate not the President, and despots — and won.” She said that studying Putin, one can derive important lessons about how to confront the autocratic impulses trump.
She recently wrote in the New York Review of Books new article titled “Russia: the conspiracy trap”, which I highly recommend to all. Its main objective is to tell and warn about the mad and pernicious rumors about Russian conspiracies, which are not outcasts from the dark corners of the Internet who love to trade in such delusional nonsense, and leading American media and the Democratic party. There are very few such articles, as in Hesse, which shows a serious and multifaceted dangers of this collective American insanity.
For starters, Hesse provides some examples of classic, unsubstantiated, unbridled and increasingly xenophobic conspiracy theories, which are disguised as serious news in such leading media outlets as MSNBC, CNN and the Washington Post. Regular diplomatic contacts become dark and ominous when they’re Russian. When the flamboyant and vociferous history of Russia in the spirit of the yellow press from the leading media from mainstream burst like soap bubbles (and burst many), or when trump their actions (such as the appointment to key posts numerous anti-Russian hawks) in shreds tears the story of himself as a “puppet of Putin,” our stubborn Conspirology don’t care about that, because, as Hesse writes, “the nature of conspiracy thinking is that facts are not able to change it.”
Leading media is always and already accustomed to present us with a wild, deliberately an emotional story about a secret Russian intrigues and conspiracy trump. They are guided solely by their imagination or, at best, the agreed report from representatives of special services and specialists of disinformation that is completely impossible to verify. Writes Gessen:
The basis fast (but infinite), the developing plot of “trump-Putin” are the leaks from intelligence services, and it is most disturbing. Almost any information can not be confirmed independently. The context, sequence and duration of the leaks are determined by people unknown to the General public, which, as expected, accepts anonymous messages on faith. And any credible evidence of active participation of officials of the trump in collusion we have not yet presented….
The dream that fuels associated with Russia hysteria, is that this hysteria will eventually create around trump’s sufficient shade, and Congress will begin to look and you will find reason to impeach him. And if that happens, it will largely be the result of a media campaign, organized by members of the intelligence community — and will create a dangerous political precedent, which will contribute to the decay of society and encourage paranoia. And this is the most optimistic outcome.
It is more likely that accusations of ties with Russia will not lead to the overthrow of the trump.
What Hesse writes in his article, I’m trying to tell and prove many months: what is this obsession with conspiracy tales about Russia poisons all aspects of political debate in the U.S. and eliminates any chances confront the real abuses and excesses of trump. Those who from morning to evening spin new stories of the spy drama about Russian and trump, convince themselves that they are bravely undermine the position of trump and weaken it, but actually achieve the opposite effect.
This crazy conspiracy theory even more discreditied American media, which millions of Americans in their daily lives Washington seems distant and inconsequential, nicodemi ideas and exchange of views to a primitive level of trump and profit from it. Americans have the impression that for these theories the energy and thoughts of the opposition are directed in the wrong direction and focused on fun, but about spy stories. All of this brings direct benefits Trump. Hesse, one key proposal sets out what you need to write every post in large letters:
“Rossejat” helps him [Trump] is distracting people from the real, documented and substantiated problems and contributing to the spread of xenophobic conspiracy theories, when there is a basis for dismissal of the xenophobe of conspiracy.
I am often asked why I write so much about what people most often think about Russia and about trump. I do it not only because of the fact that such Intrusive interpretation diverts attention from the consistent actions of trump and the need to find effective means of struggle against far-right nationalism. And not because such an interpretation due to the disgusting and well familiar to us from the history of anti-Russian xenophobia. And not even because of the fact that it raises to a dangerous level, the tension between the two nuclear and traditionally hostile to each other countries. This is all true, it all has a place, but for me it is not the main motive.
First of all, the reason is that it’s insulting attacks on common sense. Such a crazy narrative line represents an assault on the foundations of journalistic fairness and integrity, the duty of the reporter to confirm the reported evidence and the facts, and not to put in the forefront your desire, imagination and imposed crowd misconceptions. And form a narrative line most reputable belonging to the ruling direction of the circles of the political and media elite of the United States. They are completely disoriented, confused and shocked by the victory of trump. Instead of patiently produce a coherent and effective strategy against him, these people are desperately grasping at ideas online charlatans claiming omniscience, and put forward the most unbridled and vile conspiracy theories, completely abandoning the fundamental principles of rationality and skepticism.
To understand how far this insanity, let’s look at one of the latest conspiracy theories, which this weekend is entrenched in the minds and thoughts of how marginalized, and people from the mainstream. The reason for its occurrence was the death of 68-year-old American of Ukrainian origin Alex Oronov (Alex Oronov), whose daughter married Brian Cohen (Bryan Cohen), who is the brother of private counsel to trump, Michael Cohen (Michael Cohen). Understand what a close relationship?
In the 1990-ies of the rotten swamp of the extreme right just distracted when the elections were won by bill Clinton. They were convinced that bill and Hillary bloody murderers, constantly eating his political opponents and all others who can to expose them. Among the victims of not only Vince foster (Vince Foster) (Deputy legal adviser to the President, who died under mysterious circumstances in 1993 — approx. lane), but many other people that are not connected with the presidential couple.
All the dead people that somehow, even very remotely associated with the Clintons, became a “hit list.”. These people died from “natural causes” as confirmed by the autopsy, however, right-wing extremists were still talking about the “mysterious deaths”, alluding to the fact that the responsibility for this lies with the Clintons.
One of the most active conductors of these insinuations was the most influential radio host rush Limbaugh (Rush Limbaugh), which in 1990-e years was called a suspicious death of any person somehow linked with the Clintons. During the election campaign of 2016, he gleefully revived this topic and began to argue that close to the Clintons again mysteriously die. Here’s what Limbaugh said to his listeners in August:
I remember in 1992 I read the magazines, where were listed the names of acquaintances of the Clintons who have died…. Remember the related secret agreements. And those on — today all over again.
Limbaugh referred to an article in Townhall magazine, where he talked about the death of three officials associated with the National Committee of the Democratic party. He said: “From the moment a few weeks ago was released the e-mails NCDP, three associated with the Committee person was found dead under rather suspicious circumstances.” Further, Limbaugh said: “the same thing we saw in 1992 and 1993.” He then ridiculed the media for what they considered his speculation crazy conspiracy theory, stressing:
Many of the friends of the Clintons dead people were killed…. It’s amazing, but this series of events always associated with the Clintons…. How much do you know of politicians whose names are associated mysterious death?… But there is a hit list of the Clintons.
Rush Limbaugh Clinton body count, Julian Assange murdered DNC staffer Seth Rich WikiLeaks… https://t.co/gZzaJkXvOa pic.twitter.com/2zmkl9Nnik
— citizenwells (@citizenwells) 11 Aug 2016
The hit list of the Clintons, killed the informant Assange from NCDP Seth rich, WikiLeaks…
And now exactly the same is very advantageous rat race began the Democrats. They point the finger at the death of any somehow associated with the trump of Russia or the person without any evidence to claim that they were killed. The difference is that now these are not marginal from the margins and numerous prominent Democrats. It is no coincidence that one of the key figures anticlinorium hysteria of the 1990s, David Brock (David Brock) today is constantly looming in the center of a similar, but much more profitable insanity, though this time it operates on the democratic side.
Today one of the most popular conspiracy theorists in the ranks of the Democrats is a former member of the British Parliament from the Tory party, and now the controversial writer in the pay of Murdoch, Louise, straight ahead, Ben (Louise Mensch), whose history of obscurantism and public humiliation is too long to retell it.
But since now straight ahead, Ben turned his attention to the unhealthy conspiracy theory about trump and Russia, and began to peddle them relentlessly, from her Twitter, there was a huge number of subscribers from among Democrats who are convinced that their criticism of the Kremlin’s spies, and any dead person was killed by a clique of Putin/trump, who is trying to hide their conspiracies. That’s what this new icon of liberal journalism tweeted two weeks ago:
I absolutely believe that Andrew Breitbart was murdered by Putin, just as the founder of RT was murdered by Putin.
— Louise Mensch (@LouiseMensch) February 24, 2017
I’m pretty sure Andrew Breitbart killed Putin, and that of the founder RT also killed Putin.
It is also apparent insanity, as the most perverted version of birth place of Obama, the terrorist attack of September 11, with the consent of the us government, which believed a significant portion of the US population. This statement in Twitter by itself deprive straight ahead, Ben all remnants of trust and credibility. However, it is now regularly quoted as an authoritative journalistic source of information about the Russian conspiracy of unbridled and fanatical opponents of the trump from the mainstream, such as acting in MSNBC a law Professor at Harvard University Laurence Tribe (Lawrence Tribe) who is willing to bear any nonsense, if only it fit his crazy idea of trump as the Kremlin agent.
When the weekend came news of the death of Aronova loyalists of the Democratic party immediately began to insinuate, and sometimes openly assert that he was killed so he couldn’t expose Russian-trompowsky conspiracy. One of the main articles, which pushed it unsubstantiated lies, was called “Palmer Report”. Insinuations from her very quickly spread on the Internet, as they are quickly picked up by prominent Democrats with their own platform.
What is the “Palmer Report”? This is a classic stuffing information website created by a mad and fanatical supporter of Hillary Clinton by bill Palmer (Bill Palmer). During the elections he was purposefully spreading false news. During the election campaign, he led a site called The Daily News Bin (the Bin of daily news), where, among other things, published absolutely false, but very popular approval based on fraudulent statements, partisan fighters MSNBC’s joy Ann Reid (Joy Ann Reid) and Malcolm nance (Malcolm Nance). Among other things, they stated that WikiLeaks published e-mails NCDP and Podestà is a fake.
“The Palmer report” (The Palmer Report) — this is the website of fake news published numerous stories about the fact that the total number of votes in the election of 2016 was changed. In the February edition of the Atlantic warned of the increasing number of “progressive information stuffing”, describing as “very harmful” example “Palmer Report”.
That’s where the Democrats get today news “information”. “The Palmer report” Professor Tribe seems to be reliable source of news. But he is no better and no different than that give to the surface teenagers from Macedonia and sites from the hit list of the Clintons. But it becomes the dominant line followed by prominent and influential Democrats completely lost their mind because winning trump. It seems that in the near future they are not sober, and common sense to them will not be back.
Favorite reporter of the Democrats during the election campaign of 2016 was Kurt Eichenwald (Kurt Eichenwald) from Newsweek. He fabricated a sensational news that in 1990 trump was put in a psychiatric hospital with the diagnosis a nervous breakdown. When Eichenwald was caught in a lie, he said that it was a “signal source”. Even such an obvious fiction and pathetic explanation not weaken his authority among Democrats, and even strengthened. After all, he argued for the Right cause.
Kurt Eichenwald ✔
@ Kurt Eichenwald
I believe that in 1990 trump was put in a psychiatric hospital with the diagnosis a nervous breakdown, and that’s why he hides his history.
Now whenever die Russian leading websites Democrats instantly and completely unsubstantiated, begin to hint that they killed Putin, and possibly trump, in order to hide something. Even when the autopsy shows that the death was from natural causes, conspiracy theories do not disappear; on the contrary, they are becoming more and promote them more actively. Remember the same straight ahead, Ben, which is “absolutely sure” that Andrew Breitbart killed Putin, despite the pathologist’s report.
Josh Marshall (Josh Marshall), host of the blog TalkingPointsMemo, called the death Aronova “startling new development”. The same thing Limbaugh and right-wing sites talking about the death of every Democrat. The liberal magazine the Washington Monthly, echoing the insinuations of the stagnant swamps of the right, salkovskis on the “hit list.” said: “was it a heart attack, as they say? Or something else? Someone needs to find out the true cause of death.”
Is it possible that all these people were killed by Putin and trump, in order to hide the traces of their conspiracy? Everything is possible — and what bill and Hillary Clinton could have ordered the murder of Vince foster and numerous paratroopers from Arkansas. But as evidence that no responsible and reasonable people will not cry about it and convince others.
When in 2016 killed Seth Richa (Seth Rich), his family was outraged and angry hints and allegations that he was murdered by the Clintons for political reasons. Giving an interview to Buzzfeed, the family Aronova similarly condemned the conspiracy theories pushed by TalkingPointsMemo, Palmer Report and other Democrats, calling it “crap” and noting that the Parties had died “after a long illness, three months after lying in the Oncology Sloan-Kettering cancer center in new York.”
But as noted yesterday, the editor in chief of Buzzfeed Ben Smith (Ben Smith) that the family Aronova condemned conspiracy theories, almost no one paid attention, but the allusions to the murder are very popular.
Ben Smith ✔
@ Ben Smith
Theories about his death plenty…
Jason Leopold ✔
@ Jason Leopold
Read an interview with the brother of Brian Cohen about the death of his father-in-law and the presence here with trump-Putin…
This happens again and again. On the Internet publish completely false message about Russia. Those who engaged in this, including leading the media and their journalists receive countless benefits: a huge number of followers in social networks, the praise of superiors and colleagues, to the media, profitable traffic to their sites. But when those stories fall apart and debunk that happens very often these denials and revelations almost no one reads. Nobody bears any responsibility for his lies, and is not reflected on the reputation of liars. And how — after all these fake propiciado for the Right Things.
From the most notorious charlatans and swindlers over the past year there was a huge army of followers in social networks. So they are happy to feed it to the Democrats endless streams of unruly and crazy conspiracy theories about trump and about Russia. For example, what trump is a Manchurian candidate who was recruited by the Soviet leaders, and then he was given into the White house in accordance with the plan of 30 years ago. Or that all criticism of the Democrats are in the service of Putin. That’s a perfectly reasonable theory, and a favorite commentators Democrats are pushing them literally every day.
This is to some extent captures and excites people. And how: after all, they fearlessly expose a foreign conspiracy carried out by Moscow to infiltrate the United States. And to some extent this is an attempt of self-justification. She explains why the Democrats have failed; and it is possible to forget the depravity and moral decay that prevail in the Democratic party. And to some extent it is a source of personal enrichment. As in the Clinton years, this conspiracy theory has spawned a galaxy of new stars in the media, and the crazier these theories, the more popular they are.
But whatever the motives, the greatest harm is caused by the fact that they have become part of the mainstream. They promote those same circles which endlessly complain about false reports by Fox News and right wing radio stations, as well as the threat from fake news. Nevertheless, to stop trump and win the cold war, they are very enthusiastic to spread the fact that they themselves condemn.
The biggest paradox of this story is that convincing his followers in one, they get a completely different result. They do not weaken trump, and reinforce it, poisoning and destroying all those institutions that can stop him (if they still have some credibility).
Fanatical fans of name-calling can’t dismiss Hesse on the grounds that she likes Putin runs the Kremlin. And so her article is very important, because the author has focused on one key point, namely that such a primitive fixation on conspiracy theories is just passivity and irresponsibility, the desire to get away from the real work to combat Trump. As Hesse explains, this bottomless and ultimately meaningless obsession with Russia completely replaced effective strategy of opposition to Trump and overshadow that devastating policy, which he conducts:
Meanwhile, although Russia remains the main topic of news, trump will continue to fight with immigrants, to cut funding for everything that has nothing to do with army and war machine, and build your office from unworthy people (reference to the words of Hillary Clinton — approx. TRANS.). As, for example, in the case where the candidacy of Ben Carson (Ben Carson) for the post of Minister of housing and urban development voted six Democrats, and for the candidacy of Rick Perry (Rick Perry) for the post of Minister of energy ten. In accordance with the plan of trump, each of them seems intent to destroy the Agency, the post of Director of which he or she was chosen. That is, to do what Steve Bannon calls a “deconstruction of the administrative state.” As for and Roman sessions, in his first speech as attorney General, he promised to relax control over the observance of civil rights, and he withdrew from the case in which the state of Texas is suing the Ministry of justice because of the discriminatory law, which required them to present at the polling station the identity document. But in the news headlines of sessions was not because of this, and due to the fact that he lied about his ties with Russia.
Even the most plausible thing in this story is that the Russians have carried out a hacking attack against the Podestà and NCDP — perceived as an Indisputable Truth despite the lack of evidence that should represent the American government. Hesse, in this regard notes: “Later there is an additional structural element of this story (which actually became his cornerstone) — joint report of the intelligence services of Russian interference in the election campaign, which was published in December and, quite frankly, ludicrous.”
Worst of all, the exchange of opinions in a society choked by irrational and extremely harmful delusion and feverish conspiracy fiction. It’s not just fiction trump, who built his political career on racist and insane conspiracy theories, but also those who have enrolled themselves in the ranks of the leaders of the resistance to the President. How can we condemn trump for his lies about the place of Obama’s birth or unsubstantiated statements about the tapping of his phones by Obama, if these people at the same time put forward unsubstantiated allegations and conspiracy theories, or praised those who build their new political platform on the biased and outright false “news”?
The storyline about Russia dominates the national debate for many months. And evidence she is becoming less. Hesse makes the following conclusion: “it is Indisputable that the protracted national game of connecting the dots between trump and Putin is a manifestation of conspiratorial thinking. This does not mean that there was no conspiracy. However, the potential existence of a conspiracy — a poor excuse of conspiracy thinking.”