The activities of Russia in last year’s US Presidential election seem to be becoming clearer, despite the best efforts of the US MSM. In fact, with a bit of Kremlinology and reading between the lines, they are clear, IMHO, perfectly. Whether that clarity is accepted by the sorts of people who care about these things is a whole different tale. We also have some clues as to their ultimate goal.

Lets start with what is known

  1. Russia helped themselves to the information goodies that Hillary Clinton, the Clinton campaign and the DNC left so invitingly available for a medium competent hacker and then leaked a lot of them. I suspect, but certainly cannot prove, that the Russians weren’t the only state actors “embedded” in these supposedly private networks, but I think it is generally understood that the wikileaks stuff all originated from Russian sources even if Guccifer2 turns out not to be anything to do with the Russians
  2. The Russians also fed credulous opposition researchers all sorts of allegations on Donald Trump and his campaign. Although these claims seem to have been treated seriously by the DNC/Clinton campaign and the FBI, few of them seem to pass the laugh test if analyzed by someone who didn’t want to believe and some seem to have documented evidence against them (e.g. the lawyer who had to be in two places at once).
  3. They also tried, in various ways, to get their hooks into the Republicans and Trump but, with the partial exception of Flynn, failed to get anywhere. Even Flynn, as far as I can tell, was smart enough to consider them to be merely temporary allies of convenience against a greater threat – Islamic extremism.
  4. They spent some time and money on a variety of social media campaigns that seem to be designed to encourage extremist positions, whether left wing or right wing.
  5. They also appear to have taken some sort of interest in probing electronic voting machines for weaknesses and the like, but they seem to have spent more effort letting this be known than actually trying to hack the election results
  6. Prior to the election (in fact prior to the 2012 election) they spent a good deal of time and money on the Clintons and appear to have extracted relevant quid pro quos in the process. This may or may not be related.

Put it together and you don’t see any evidence that the Russians were actively invested in supporting Trump. Rather what seems clear is that the aim of this is to spread mistrust and confusion and, perhaps, to cause Washington DC/US Government to form as best a circular firing squad as it can. In this they appear to be remarkably successful. Mind you they’ve been successful because they are just providing opportunities for the sleazy and possibly corrupt inhabitants of the beltway to demonstrate their sleaze and corruption.

In fact all in all, I’d say the whole thing was a classic disinformation campaign, designed to reduce trust in the overall process and the winner rather than actually sabotaging one particular side. The fact that the DNC and Clinton campaign got hacked and the Republicans/Trump didn’t appears to be because the latter had actual security and had both users and administrators with clue (so they didn’t have passwords of ‘password’ or send emails to everyone saying ‘we’ve reset all passwords to 123456’). In fact, now that the whole affair has been set going, the Russians can sit back, buy popcorn, crack open the vodka and laugh because they’ve set things up so that DC starts fighting itself.

The critical thing to recall here is the famous 29th Maxim of Maximally Effective Mercenaries:

The enemy of my enemy is my enemy’s enemy. No more. No less

I believe that Trump instinctively understands this. I suspect Flynn did not. And I am absolutely certain that a large amount of DNC insiders, plus Clinton, Obama and their cronies have generally failed to grasp this. More importantly the DNC & Clinton/Obama folks have forgotten something else, which is that bureaucracies have no loyalty whatsoever to their political masters. In fact they usually hate them all because they see that their masters have no hesitation themselves in throwing someone else under the bus, not to mention getting a close up voew of the hypocrisy and all the other warts that the general public does not see. Deep State is, I think, now throwing the Clintons to the wolves and, if that doesn’t work, it’ll toss the Obamas off the sled too because they see that the sleaze of the latter is empowering Trump and Tea Party-leaning Republicans to think about serious cleaning house and downsizing the bureaucracies. Yes the Deep thinks Trump is the enemy, and Deep State knows the DNC & co are Trump’s enemy but Deep State isn’t stupid enough to think that the DNC & co are anything other than partners in an alliance that has passed its use-by date.

Aw shucks.