Pompeo’s Visit Lets Post-Soviet States Leverage U.S. Backing Against Russia, China, But Real Support Remains Limited

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Nikolas Gvosdev – February 7, 2020) With U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s visit to the region, the 2020 round of the Eurasian bazaar is in session. This is where the countries that border Russia attempt to bargain with the United States to obtain passes for their human rights records, to extract military or economic […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Ex-MI6 spy ‘fabricated dossier on Trump and prostitutes'” – Sunday Times (UK)/ Tim Shipman

File Photo of British Parliament Building, Big Ben, Thames, adapted from image at loc.gov

“The dossier on Donald Trump … by … former MI6 spy Christopher Steele …accus[ing Trump] … of being compromised by Russia, was a … ‘fabrication,’ according to … leading British spy writer[] Nigel West [who] … revealed he was hired by a … Republican law firm to assess the dossier in 2017 and concluded that large parts of it were […]

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Musings II … The “Intelligence Community,” “Russian Interference,” and Due Diligence

DNI Seal and Smaller Seals of Agencies Related to DNI

Did the U.S. “Intelligence Community” judge that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election? (Jackmatlock.com – Jack Matlock – June 29, 2018) Most commentators seem to think so. Every news report I have read of the planned meeting of Presidents Trump and Putin in July refers to “Russian interference” as a fact and asks whether the matter will be discussed. […]

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From: Jessica Pisano: “Correction: Re: 2019-#187-Johnson’s Russia List/#20”

Historic Washington Post Masthead, adapted from image at nlrb.gov

Subject: Correction: Re: 2019-#187-Johnson’s Russia List/#20 Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2019 From: Jessica Pisano <pisanoj@newschool.edu> To: davidjohnson@starpower.net Dear David, I hope all is well with you. There is a line in your reproduction of my WaPo piece (#20) below that was not part of my article: “the Republicans say that Trump’s quid pro quos are normal. Here’s why they’re wrong.” […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Antonov: Russia-U.S. dialogue gaining momentum recently” – Interfax

Anatoly Antonov and Others Facing U.S. Official with U.S. and Russian Flags on Table

NEW YORK (UN). Nov 8 (Interfax) – Russia will be pleased if U.S. President Donald Trump arrives in Moscow to attend celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany in World War II next year, Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said. “We will be glad to welcome U.S. President Donald Trump in Moscow at […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Hunter Biden’s web of interests; His ties span the globe and raise questions about the overlap of business and politics” – Financial Times/ Aime Williams, Sun Yu, Roman Olearchyk

“Hunter Biden’s business interests often show up in unexpected places … Now [they are] … at the centre of … the fourth impeachment inquiry in U.S. history. … under scrutiny after … Trump leaned on the president of Ukraine to investigate …. Trump has also publicly called on China to investigate the Bidens. The Ukraine revelations have led House Democrats […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Is Russia Winning the Ukraine Scandal?” – Council on Foreign Relations/ Stephen Sestanovich

File Photo of Zelenskiy Extending Handshake, adapted from image at a subdomain of senate.gov

“U.S. military and economic support for Ukraine has so far weathered the widening impeachment inquiry into … Trump’s contacts with Kyiv. This backing could strengthen Ukraine in the next round of diplomacy with Russia. … Trump’s suspension of military aid to Kyiv was opposed both within his own administration and by Congress, and the move was reversed even before details […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia-U.S. relations far cry from Trump’s ‘getting along with Russia’ – Peskov” – Interfax

Dmitry Peskov file photo adapted from image at kremlin.ru/wikimedia commons

MOSCOW. Oct 8 (Interfax) – U.S. President Donald Trump has not explained the meaning of his wish to get along with Russia, and the reality does not align with his statements, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the press on Tuesday. Journalists asked Peskov to comment on criticism of Trump’s friendly attitude to Russia, which had been voiced in the United […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “All Roads Lead to Mueller; The Russia collusion morass threatens to spoil the Democrats’ impeachment drama” – Wall Street Journal/ Holman W. Jenkins, Jr.

American Flag and Partial View of U.S. Capitol Dome, adapted from image at aoc.gov

“… Numerous press accounts claimed falsely, even with the evidence in hand, that … Trump … asked for a ‘favor’ from Ukraine’s president in the form of ‘dirt’ on Joe Biden. The plain words of the available transcript show the ‘favor’ he sought was cooperation with the Justice Department’s perfectly proper investigation of the 2016 election. Now come reports … […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin Says He Doesn’t Mind if Private Talk With Trump Is Made Public” – New York Times/ Ivan Nechepurenko

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

“… Putin … said … he would not mind if the White House made public his talks with … Trump at a summit meeting last year, because there was nothing incriminating …. Putin, a former K.G.B. spy, said his previous job had taught him that any conversation he had could be published. ‘Therefore, when they tried to spin another scandal […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Where else do leaders do what Trump is accused of? Start with Russia. And he has plenty of chances to do it again.” – Washington Post/ Scott Radnitz

File Photo of Joe Biden at Podium with U.S. Seal, With Ukrainian and U.S. Flags in Background

“The House of Representatives is investigating … Trump’s alleged efforts to pressure Ukraine’s government to dig up dirt on Joe Biden …. [I]ncumbent presidents generally have a modest advantage … in familiarity, fundraising and media coverage. …. [I]n countries where … rule of law is weak, such as the post-Soviet region[ there is the prospect of] using … ‘administrative resources’ […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “What the Press Doesn’t Know About Ukraine; Reporters will have to ask a lot more questions to understand the missing context of the Trump call” – Wall Street Journal/ Holman W. Jenkins, Jr.

Maidan Square in Kiev, Ukraine

“We might not be here if the mainstream media, which loved the Steele Dossier when it seemed to incriminate … Trump, had later shown an equal interest in investigating its origins as a partisan fabrication. In his now-famous transcript … Trump mainly presses Ukraine’s new president for dirt not on the Bidens but on the known unknowns of 2016. ‘I […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Trump slow-walks Ukraine military aid meant to contain Russia” – Politico/ Caitlin Emma, Connor O’Brien

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

“The Trump administration is slow-walking $250 million in military assistance to Ukraine, annoying lawmakers and advocates who argue the funding is critical to keeping Russia at bay. … Trump asked his national security team to review … the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative … to ensure the money is being used in the best interest of the United States, a senior […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Trump Adds to Sanctions on Russia Over Skripals” – New York Times/ Michael Crowley, Julian E. Barnes

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… Trump … signed an executive order imposing new sanctions on Russia, responding to growing pressure from Congress to further punish Moscow after a nerve agent attack …. the second round of sanctions by the administration after a botched attempt in March 2018 to fatally poison a former Russian military intelligence officer, Sergei Skripal, in …  Salisbury [in the UK]. […]

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Trump Calls Putin To Offer Help Battling Siberian Fires

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – August 1, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-army-called-in-to-fight-siberia-forest-fires/30085889.html) U.S. President Donald Trump has offered to help Russia battle widespread forest fires in Siberia as he seeks to repair Washington’s fractious relationship with Moscow. Trump called Russian President Vladimir Putin to make the offer, the Kremlin said […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘Accountability’? The Mueller Hearing Is How Trump Escapes” – The New Yorker/ Susan B. Glasser

“After so much waiting – a hundred and twenty-four days, to be precise, since Robert Mueller’s report was delivered – perhaps it was bound to be a disappointment. Still, three hours after the former special counsel took the witness stand on Wednesday to testify about his investigation of President Trump and Russian interference in the 2016 election … MSNBC anchor […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Mueller Report and the Silence of the Experts; Those well-positioned to comment on the investigation too often ceded the debate to partisans.” – Moscow Times/ Timothy Frye

“The Mueller reports highlights many shortcomings in American democracy, but also reveals a deeper failure that informs our broader politics: the silence of the experts. Those well-positioned to comment on the investigation – academic Russia watchers, political science experts on elections, and non-partisan national security specialists – too often ceded the debate to partisans. … [T]he expert community should have […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “New Report: Mueller Lacks Substantiating Evidence Of Russian Election Interference” – The Federalist/ Madeline Osburn

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“New report reveals that Mueller’s investigation missed key evidence to support its central claim that Russia was 100% responsible for election interference.” “… Mueller’s [Special Counsel] report lacks substantiating evidence supporting the central claims of Kremlin interference in the 2016 election, according to … RealClearInvestigations. … discrepancies over the timeline, details, and conflicts of interest from key players in the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Despite ‘thug hugs,’ Trump is tougher on despots than Obama” – New York Post/ Marc Thiessen

White House

“During a single visit to Asia … Trump embraced not one, not two, but three dictators. He became the first American president to set foot in North Korea, where he praised his ‘great friendship’ with North Korea’s despotic leader, Kim Jong Un; he held another cringe-worthy press availability with … Putin, where Trump joked about Russia’s electoral interference; … he […]

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The Osaka Meeting: Is the Tide Turning in U.S.-Russian Relations?

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Thomas Graham – July 1, 2019) Thomas Graham, Managing Director at Kissinger Associates, was the senior Russia expert on the National Security Council staff during the George W. Bush administration. To the consternation of his bitterest opponents and to the surprise, and relief, of many, U.S. President Donald Trump’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “White House’s Top Russia Adviser Fiona Hill to Leave Position; National Security Council’s non-proliferation director to succeed her” – Wall Street Journal/ Vivian Salama

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… top [Trump] Russia adviser [Fiona Hill] is leaving … in August … [to] be succeeded by … current … National Security Council … nonproliferation [head] Tim Morrison …. Hill, a … staunch [Putin] critic has held the position since March 2017 …. Hill had just assumed [the role] … when … Trump invited Russia[n] foreign minister … Lavrov[] and […]

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Toward the Possibility of a New U.S.-Russian “Reset”: Does Their Hot & Cold Past Foretell Their Future?

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo – Ivan Kurilla – May 28, 2019 – Ivan Kurilla is Professor at the European University at St. Petersburg) Relations between Russia and the United States have been known to change, for the better or for the worse, within a relatively short period of time. Drawing on historical examples, I analyze cases when relations improved and […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “American Hustle; What Mueller Found – and Didn’t Find – About Trump and Russia” – Foreign Affairs/ Stephen Kotkin

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… Russian intelligence organizations … could manage entirely on their own to hack e-mail accounts, line up cutouts such as WikiLeaks to disseminate damaging material, impersonate Americans on social media, and study elementary research available in open sources about battleground states and swing voters. * * * … The sections of the report that treat what Russia intended and achieved […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Trump, Russia seek to use end of Mueller investigation as pivot point in relationship; Putin calls Mueller investigation ‘objective'” – Washington Post/ Anne Gearan, Anton Troianovski

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… the special counsel investigation of Russian election interference now complete, the Trump administration cautiously offered a fresh start with Russia … as the two countries find their interests colliding on a range of international issues. … Trump dispatched Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to meet with … Putin, bearing a message that the United States is ready to renew […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Russia Investigation Will Continue; Counterintelligence agencies must find it hard to believe the cupboard is already bare” – The Atlantic/ John Sipher

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… Mueller’s Russia probe is over, and … Trump on Friday again described the probe as a ‘Witch Hunt,’ [yet] the FBI is almost certain to continue its counterintelligence investigation into Russian espionage efforts related to the 2016 election. …”

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JRL NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “The Russia story cannot die — CNN, the Democratic Party, others have too much invested in it” – Fox/ Tucker Carlson

U.S. Capitol in Bright Sunlight

“… Barr first served as Attorney General in the George H.W. Bush administration. That was 1991. … Then this February, purely by process of elimination, basically as he was the one guy could get confirmed, Barr became Attorney General of the United States once again. The Mueller investigation was nearly over when he got the job. Barr probably didn’t expect […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “How the Obama White House engaged Ukraine to give Russia collusion narrative an early boost” – The Hill/ John Solomon

File Photo of Susan Rice and Barack Hussein Obama in St. Petersburg Russia, with Mural of St. Petersburg Scene in Background, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

“As … Trump began his meteoric rise … the Obama White House summoned Ukrainian authorities to Washington …. Ukrainian participants said it didn’t take long … to realize the Americans’ objectives included two politically hot investigations: one that touched … Biden’s family and one that involved a lobbying firm linked closely to then-candidate Trump. … [O]ne of the earliest documented […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Memes Didn’t Steal the Election; Being influenced by foreign propaganda doesn’t cost a citizen his right to vote” – Wall Street Journal/ Crispin Sartwell

Multilingual Polling Place Sign from U.S. Election Polling Place

“… It’s worth pondering what really would throw an election’s legitimacy into question. Directly compromising the vote by hacking voting machines or disposing of absentee ballots does the job – the latter triggered the invalidation of a North Carolina House race …. So does jailing opponents, banning political parties, or threatening or bribing voters. But a social-media campaign, even coordinated […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “What the Mueller Report Tells Us About How Russia Works; Please, put away those onion-dome-on-the-White-House graphics and abandon those excitable claims of Trump as a Russian agent.” – Moscow Times/ Mark Galeotti

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… Putin’s Russia is … an ‘adhocracy’ … in which the true elite is defined by service to the needs of the Kremlin rather than any specific institutional or social identity. They may be spies, or diplomats, journalists, politicians, or millionaires; essentially they are all ‘political entrepreneurs’ who both seek to serve the Kremlin or are required to do so, […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH AUDIO: “Former U.S. Ambassador To Russia Discusses Findings Of Mueller Report”- NPR/ Michael McFaul

File Photo of Michael McFaul Standing and Barack Hussein Obama Sitting at Desk, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

“MCFAUL: … I’ve actually been dealing with Russian trolls and Russian real people on social media since I was ambassador in 2012, and I think it just underscores how sophisticated this operation was by Russia. I still fear that a lot of Americans have underestimated both their capacity to interfere in our elections and their will to do it. And […]

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Trump and Russia: ‘Quid Pro Quo’ or Quid Pro Talk?

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – RM Staff – April 18, 2019 – russiamatters.org/blog/trump-and-russia-quid-pro-quo-or-quid-pro-talk) A few weeks before today’s release of the voluminous Mueller report, a former New York Times executive editor, Max Frankel, argued in an op-ed that the Trump campaign and “Vladimir Putin’s oligarchy” had reached an “obvious bargain” in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election: The “overarching […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Democrats’ Denial Over The Lack Of Russian Collusion Could Re-Elect Trump” – The Federalist/ Jonathan S. Tobin

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“Doubling down on accusations and demanding the un-redacted Mueller report is no substitute for collusion myths, but Democrats’ inability to let it go helps the president.” “… The Democratic Party absorbed a hard blow when … the Mueller investigation determin[ed] there was no collusion with Russia involving the president or his campaign. … Expecting members of Congress like … Adam […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “All About the U.S. Sanctions Aimed at Putin’s Russia” – Bloomberg/ Henry Meyer, Laurence Arnold, Olga Tanas, Tony Halpin

Portion of U.S. Treasury Department Building Facade, North Side, with Sculpture of Alexander Hamilton

“… Since 2014, the U.S. has imposed travel bans, asset freezes and finance and trade restrictions against hundreds of Russian individuals and companies … a multinational effort …. 1. What U.S. sanctions are in place against Russia? More than 700 Russian people and companies have been targeted …. 2. Why were the sanctions imposed? … starting in 2014 after Russia […]

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Kirk Bennett: “Tying Up the Loose Ends of Russiagate”

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

Subject: TYING UP THE LOOSE ENDS OF RUSSIAGATE Date: Thu, 4 Apr 2019 From: Kirk Bennett <kirkbennett7@yahoo.com> TYING UP THE LOOSE ENDS OF RUSSIAGATE The unfinished business of Russiagate consists of clearing the names of innocent people; holding senior bureaucrats to account for errors of judgment and abuses of power; and restoring the tarnished image of democratic governance. By Kirk […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “What Mueller Won’t Say: Did he investigate the Steele dossier? If not, he didn’t really investigate.” – Wall Street Journal/ Holman W. Jenkins, Jr.

Robert Mueller file photo, adapted from image at fbi.gov

“… the exact words of Attorney General William Barr: ‘The Special Counsel and his staff thoroughly investigated allegations that members of the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump … conspired with the Russian government in its efforts to interfere in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.’ How is it possible to investigate these ‘allegations’ without holding the Steele dossier, the only […]

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Steve Shabad: “Response to Matt Bivens [Re: Russiagate]”

White House

Subject: Response to Matt Bivens Date: Wed, 27 Mar 2019 From: Steve Shabad <steve.shabad@gmail.com> To: davidjohnson@starpower.net Response to Matt Bivens (JRL #50 “Russiagate: The Great Tragic Comedy of Modern Journalism”) From Steve Shabad [Bivens: blog.usejournal.com/russiagate-the-great-tragic-comedy-of-modern-journalism-fd2a451aaa25][russialist.org/jrl-newswatch-russiagate-the-great-tragic-comedy-of-modern-journalism-matt-bivens/] Matt Bivens’ essay on what he calls the “tragic comedy of modern journalism” made for provocative reading, and I agreed with some of his points. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russiagate: The Great Tragic Comedy of Modern Journalism” – Matt Bivens

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

(Matt Bivens – Medium.com – March 25, 2019 – medium.com/@mattbivens_34439/russiagate-the-great-tragic-comedy-of-modern-journalism-fd2a451aaa25) “Russiagate: The Great Tragic Comedy of Modern Journalism” By Matt Bivens Former editor, Moscow Times “In its Russiagate coverage, The New York Times has repeatedly offered a graphic accusing the President’s retinue of “more than 100 contacts with Russian nationals.” This decision to question the loyalty of people who have […]

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Mueller Investigation Result Opens Way for a Putin Visit to Washington This Year, Frolov Says

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

(Paul Goble – Window on Euarasia – Staunton, March 26, 2019) Many Russian commentators have suggested that the findings of the Mueller investigation may be good news for Donald Trump but will do little to affect US-Russian relations. But Vladimir Frolov, who is well-connected with the regime, says that Mueller’s findings open the way for Vladimir Putin to visit the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Deeper Down the Rabbit Hole; The Mueller Report won’t soothe a paranoid frenzy to undo the 2016 election” – City Journal (New York)/ Paul Starobin

Multilingual Polling Place Sign from U.S. Election Polling Place

“The idea of irascible Donald Trump as a compliant tool of the Kremlin in Moscow – some sort of clandestine agent or asset … has always seemed off-center. Who has ever been able to control him … Does Trump seem capable of keeping secrets, following orders, or maintaining the strict discipline required of a double agent? … to sober minds, […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH [SATIRE]: “Shocked Vladimir Putin Slowly Realizing He Didn’t Conspire With Trump Campaign; ‘Who The H[–]l Was I Working With Then?’ Asks Russian President” – The Onion

Putin at Desk

“Saying that he had been ‘totally blindsided’ by the revelations from the recently released findings of the Mueller investigation, a shocked Vladimir Putin reportedly came to the realization Tuesday that he didn’t conspire with Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign after all. ‘What the hell? I worked so hard on this – if I wasn’t colluding with the Trump campaign, who […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “With Mueller gone, can Trump pursue his dream of a Russian reset?” – Washington Post/ Paul Sonne, Anton Troianovski, John Hudson

“… Trump came into office signaling a desire to improve relations with Moscow, pledging on the campaign trail to ‘get along great’ with … Putin and win his respect. With the conclusion of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation, the president has won more freedom to pursue that goal. But experts say the sand has shifted significantly in Washington […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “After Mueller Report, News Media Leaders Defend Their Works” – New York Times/ Amy Chozick

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“[CNN president] Jeff Zucker … said he was ‘entirely comfortable’ with the network’s coverage. ‘We are not investigators. We are journalists, and our role is to report the facts as we know them, which is exactly what we did’ … ‘A sitting president’s own Justice Department investigated his campaign for collusion with a hostile nation. That’s not enormous because the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Myth that Won’t Die: Donald Trump as Russia’s Puppet; Trump’s actual policies toward Russia are in contrast to the notion that he is ‘doing Putin’s bidding.'” – The National Interest/ Ted Galen Carpenter

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

“… Trump’s political adversaries, along with an assortment of Russia haters in the foreign-policy community and the news media, keep pushing the narrative that Trump is … Putin’s puppet. That allegation shows few signs of dissipating even though no credible evidence supporting it has emerged. Unfortunately, the situation is unlikely to change even though Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation concluded […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russians Hope Mueller Report Opens Door to Improved U.S. Ties” – New York Times/ Neil MacFarquhar, Ivan Nechepurenko, Andrew Kramer

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

“There was crowing in Russia … that the special counsel’s investigation did not find coordination between Moscow and the Trump campaign in 2016, but optimism about improved relations was tempered by the report’s extensive focus on Russian meddling in the presidential election. Official reaction … proved decidedly muted. [Putin spokesman] Dmitri S. Peskov … [said] the only news in the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “When the Mueller report shows Trump didn’t collude with Russia, will anyone be punished?” – Fox News/ Tucker Carlson 3.21.19

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… Once the Mueller report appears, and it becomes incontrovertible that whatever his faults, Donald Trump did not collude with the Russians, the many people who have persistently claimed on the basis of no evidence that he did collude with the Russians, ought to be punished. …”

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U.S. Senators To Try Again With Tougher Russia Sanctions Bill

American Flag and Partial View of U.S. Capitol Dome, adapted from image at aoc.gov

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – February 14, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/us-senators-press-new-tough-russia-sanctions-bill/29769099.html) A bipartisan group of U.S. senators has introduced a bill that would impose drastic new sanctions on Russia over its meddling in U.S. elections and aggression against Ukraine. The bill, the latest congressional effort to push President Donald Trump […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Senate has uncovered no direct evidence of conspiracy between Trump campaign and Russia” – NBC News/ Ken Dilanian

American Flag and Partial View of U.S. Capitol Dome, adapted from image at aoc.gov

“After two years and 200 interviews, the Senate Intelligence Committee is approaching the end of its investigation into the 2016 election, having uncovered no direct evidence of a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia, according to both Democrats and Republicans on the committee. … investigators disagree along party lines when it comes to the implications of a pattern of […]

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Diminishing Returns: How Effective Are Sanctions Against Russia?

(PONARS Eurasia – Stacy Closson – January 2019 – ponarseurasia.org/memo/diminishing-returns-how-effective-are-sanctions-against-russia) Stacy Closson is a Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center’s Kennan Institute and a Senior Adjunct Professional Lecturer at American University’s School of International Service. (PONARS Policy Memo) In November 2018, the Trump administration announced another set of sanctions on Russian individuals and entities for supporting Russia’s economic integration […]

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Do Trump’s Afghanistan Claims Mirror Moscow’s Rhetoric?

Afghanistan Map of Ethnicities

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – RM Staff – January 11, 2019 – russiamatters.org/blog/do-trumps-afghanistan-claims-mirror-moscows-rhetoric) Earlier this month, President Donald Trump offered his take on Soviet Russia’s experiences in Afghanistan as he argued in favor of a huge U.S. troop withdrawal and a larger contribution by Moscow to stabilize the war-racked country. The U.S. president put forward two basic propositions: that the […]

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