Do not jump to conclusions about the intervention of Russia in election

In January, the American special services have accused the Kremlin that he helped Donald Trump during the presidential race; however, they refused to provide evidence to support these allegations, citing, of course, on the inadmissibility of disclosure of sources and methods.

Started on this case numerous investigations in the coming months may shed more light on the situation. They can even present compelling evidence and lead to resignations and trials. But the details now emerge out, and they did not strengthen the conclusions of the intelligence community. In fact, recent revelations indicate that intelligence agencies don’t understand who has influence in Moscow.

On Wednesday evening, Reuters published an exclusive material based on interviews with “three active and four former American officials”. Those unnamed sources told about “two confidential documents” from Moscow think tank called the Russian Institute for strategic studies (RISS), which “sets out the mechanism and arguments in favor of active efforts of Russia to intervene in the election of November 8,” exposed the American intelligence services.

In the first document, which was circulated in June, it was proposed to conduct a large-scale propaganda campaign in the United States in support of a candidate, the more friendly relation with Russia than Barack Obama. In the second, released in October, the document sounded a note of caution that Hillary Clinton is likely to win the election, and a call to replace the propaganda in support of the trump assumptions about election fraud to discredit the American electoral system.

Stating that these documents played a crucial role in the conclusions of the Obama administration in January, these sources are called RISS organizer of one of the most successful in the history of the campaigns of exerting influence. Here, however, there is a serious reassessment of the impact that the organization has fallen into disfavour due to a series of disastrous miscalculations.

RISS — it’s not some kind of ordinary think tank. Until 2009 he was part of the Russian foreign intelligence Service SVR. He then nominally became an independent structure, however, it of Directors was appointed by President Vladimir Putin. During the American election campaign it was headed by retired General Leonid Reshetnikov, who is in the RAF was in charge of the Balkan direction and headed the analytical center.

Reshetnikov is a Russian nationalist, close to the community for volunteers who initiated and initially led the Pro-Russian uprising in the East of Ukraine. In the end, he was accused that he failed to predict the Ukrainian revolution of 2014.

Reshetnikov retained his post, however, some employees were laid off. One of them, Alexander Sytin expressed their discontent in an article written by him in 2015. “From the Kremlin began to receive signals about unwillingness to get involved in a full-scale war with Ukraine, — he wrote. Is the fault of the experts of the Institute in decision (support) solutions, which led to Russia’s serious economic and international crisis.” The Kremlin appointed a virtuosic politician Vyacheslav Surkov, the chief curator of Eastern Ukraine.

Only one biography and track record Reshetnikova enough to the Kremlin refused to listen to RISS (or at least only to RISS) in such an important issue as the campaign effects in American elections. And there were no secrets in recommendation Reshetnikova “to intensify the signals of election fraud”, that they exposed the American intelligence services. On 8 November, i.e. a week after the dismissal Reshetnikov from the post of head of the RISS at the direction of Putin, he said something like this on a nationalist website

All the levers — in the hands of Clinton. Financial leverage and the leverage of the security services. So we can only speculate, win the trump, as it should be, or will be fraud. Likely to be a disgusting fraud. And the old lady would be drawn into them.

The General added that the American electoral system has always been subjected to fraud to top “couldn’t get people like trump.” His statement was perfectly synchronized with the Kremlin’s propaganda: on October 30, the main news show of state television, “Vesti Nedeli” and its presenter Dmitry Kiselev talked about how easy it is to rig the election in the United States.

What it was: the Kremlin has waged a campaign in accordance with the advice Reshetnikova, or Reshetnikov followed the instructions of the Kremlin? I suspect it is the latter, especially considering what a cool assessment of RISS gave Trump after his election.

21 Nov fellow of the Institute Igor Pshenichnikov wrote an article for the state Agency “RIA Novosti”, in which he made the prediction that trump will behave like a “normal” Republican President, and will certainly be conflict with Russia, as did others:

So it cannot be excluded that, being the rightful owner of the White house, trump will make a couple of overtures to address his supporters from the American heartland, and then take a more balanced — from the point of view of the American establishment — position.

At the time this view was unpopular even in the United States, and the Russian state propaganda celebrated victory trump vengeance and praised him for his kind words addressed to Putin. Why RISS devise a plan for the election trump, and then to act with caution against him?

If American intelligence agencies estimate Russia’s role in last year’s elections on the basis of documents RISS, they should change their position. In Reshetnikovo this institution closer to the extreme right of the Russian forces and did not render special influence on the Kremlin’s policy. Putin may agree with his employees on some issues, and can also informally use them to achieve certain political goals, but RISS is not the only voice to which he listens. Moreover, after the failures of the RISS in Ukraine, Putin clearly moved away from him.

Today the Institute is headed by people made of different stuff. He is a former Prime Minister and head of the SVR Mikhail Fradkov is a man more sophisticated and practical. He focused more on external trade than military Affairs. Putin during his rule invariably holds his important offices, and Fradkov actually can turn RISI in the real brain trust of the Kremlin. But last year’s “confidential documents” of this institution can only be footnotes to the yet untold story about what the Kremlin did or did not do in the United States.

The content of the article may not reflect the views of the editorial Board, Bloomberg LP and its owners.


Reader comments

R. W. Emerson II

The most dangerous animal is a wounded animal. The American Empire was in decline and this is totally in despair. Like previous empires it wages war abroad, to distract attention from abuses and corruption in the country. Example is the current war against Russia.
Russia wants the us leadership was healthy, sane, competent, balanced. Sane leaders are unlikely to bring us to the suicide of world war III. No, it’s not a game where the win of one is equal to the loss of the other. The main interests of Russia and America coincide.
When we are talking about the game on the principle of “who’s who”, where any success of the United States is Russia’s failure, we create the basis for this war, which will destroy us all. This kind of thinking suggests that we were caught in the trap of the cult of death.
Russia stands aside from this crazy American fascination with death and destruction. While the US advocated the dictatorship of the unipolar world in which eradicated the last traces of human independence, Russia supports multipolar world, the world of normal competition and cooperation.

I have no doubt that Putin, like most Russians with the Americans, as most of the rest of the world, believed that Clinton would win. I’m sure even most of the supporters trump thought Clinton would win. A chance to win Trump could give tens of thousands of rural voters in three States, and the results of the popular vote Clinton won.
In these conditions Russia has been seeking to sow fear, uncertainty and doubt to go all out to discredit Clinton, showing that she is a weak President. It is therefore possible that the Russian was actually hacked completely unprotected e-mail John Podestà. They just paid his brother Tony a lot of money for many years. But the challenge was not to elect a trump (it seemed almost impossible), and to weaken and discredit President Clinton.
When trump won, the main objective remained unchanged — to weaken and undermine the position of American President and, accordingly, the United States. And in this case the Democrats have become the major allies of the Kremlin.


When authoritative edition allows Pro-Russian propagandists to cast doubt on what has been tested and confirmed by all special services of our country, is a manifestation of irresponsibility.
We have enough sites with false news that at the direction of our President discrediting American intelligence.
Yes, at the end of the article there is a clause amended, but not enough.