22:43 GMT09 May 2021
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    Hillary Clinton continues to play the blame game, accusing Moscow and WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange of conspiring to disrupt her presidential bid. Speaking to Radio Sputnik, Australian geopolitical analyst Dr. Binoy Kampmark said that the claims are groundless, since Clinton was "an appalling candidate" in the first place.

    Hillary Clinton's attempts to blame WikiLeaks and Russia for her defeat in the US presidential elections resembles nothing but an apologia for the appalling choice made by the Democratic Party, Dr. Binoy Kampmark, a geopolitical analyst senior lecture at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT), told Radio Sputnik.

    "[Hillary Clinton] is trying to make amends, in some way, by accusing WikiLeaks and [its founder] Julian Assange for that particular [alleged] connection to Russia," Dr. Kampmark underscored.

    During an interview with Four Corners, a program on the Australian TV network ABC, Clinton derided WikiLeaks, an international non-profit organization that publishes secret information and news leaks, "a fully owned subsidiary of Russian intelligence." According to the former Democratic nominee, it was Assange who "colluded" with the Russian government to derail her presidential bid.

    Clinton's interview was part of her publicity tour for her new book, "What Happened" which sheds light on what the former presidential candidate views as major reasons behind her defeat.

    However, according to Dr. Kampmark, Clinton's claims are unsustainable: While she links her failure to the Russians and WikiLeaks, the truth of the matter is that "she was an appalling candidate to begin with," he remarked.

    "In the broader sense of it, in terms of… information [that] was released in the Podesta emails — a range of material available on WikiLeaks website — demonstrated her as not a particularly glorious candidate," the Australian academic underscored.

    Clinton, who turns 70 later this month, went on to label Russian President Vladimir Putin a "dictator," which, according to the geopolitical analyst, bears no relation to reality.

    Does Clinton's Stance Resonate With the Australians?

    The question then arises whether the former Democratic presidential nominee's stance resonates with the Australian public.

    According to Dr. Kampmark, views vary in the country as to whether Russia poses a challenge to the US and its allies.

    "The concern about Russia's interference is not so much as great here [in Australia] but the politicians… try to make the case that Vladimir Putin is a considerable problem and that [the alleged] hacking is a considerable problem… But the reality is that it is not a big story here," the academic said.

    He added that Hillary Clinton is propagating the view that America's close ally Australia should worry about the Trump presidency, and the fact that he won, as she claims, "because of meddling by President Putin and by WikiLeaks."

    He stated that some in Australia see Putin as a Russian patriot and "a good example to inspire [others]," however, "you [also] got those like Foreign Minister [Julie Isabel] Bishop and the current Prime Minister of Australia Malcolm Turnbull who share [US] criticism and suspicions about Vladimir Putin, because they can't quite understand his politics and his policies."

    The analyst specified that the Australian government "follows the US line," which is also "Clinton's line."

    2016 Democratic National Committee Email Leak

    On July 22, 2016 WikiLeaks published a collection of 19,252 Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails, along with their 8,034 attachments. Dated from January 2015 to May 2016, the documents shed light on the Democratic Party leadership's sabotage of Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign, which paved the way for Hillary Clinton's nomination.  

    There is still a lot of controversy over the origin of the dump: while the Democrats and the US Intelligence Community continue to claim that the DNC server was hacked, there is opinion that the files in question were handed to WikiLeaks by a 27-year-old Democratic Party staffer, Seth Rich, who was mysteriously murdered in July 2016.

    In an August 2016 interview on FoxNews with Megyn Kelly, Julian Assange dropped the hint that Rich was an alleged WikiLeaks' source. To add to the embarrassment, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) didn't examine the alleged breach of data, relying on a private firm's investigation of the DNC hack.

    The Podesta Emails

    In October 2016 WikiLeaks released over 20,000 pages of emails allegedly belonging to Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, a long-term associate of Bill and Hillary Clinton. The emails have not been authenticated by the campaign or its chairman. The files disclosed the Clinton Foundation's murky financial operations and raised the question about former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's alleged conflict of interest.

    The Clinton team weaponized the cases to accuse Russia of hacking activities and meddling in the US 2016 presidential race to tip the balance in Donald Trump's favor. However, no concrete evidence to back the claims has ever been presented.

    Moscow has repeatedly denied the allegations, calling them baseless and absolutely unsubstantiated.

    In her book "What Happened," the former Democratic presidential nominee refers to WikiLeaks and Russia as forces which disrupted her presidential run.

    Commenting on the release of the 'opus', the New York Daily News outlined at least 18 people, organizations and conditions, which according to Clinton, contributed to her defeat. Among others the list includes Bernie Sanders, former FBI Director James Comey, Russian President Vladimir Putin and, to the surprise of many, former Vice President Joe Biden.

    As Fox News wittily noted, the book "appears to read more like an enemies list than a campaign chronicle."

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


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    election meddling, "Russian meddling", Podesta Emails, fraud, hacking, 2016 US Presidential election, US Intelligence Community (USIC), Democratic National Committee, The Clinton Foundation, Seth Rich, Hillary Clinton, Vladimir Putin, Julie Bishop, Donald Trump, Julian Assange, Australia, US, Russia
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