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    This April 13, 2016 file photo shows the seal of the Central Intelligence Agency at CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

    How US Meddles in Other Nations' Elections 'in the Interests of Democracy'

    © AP Photo / Carolyn Kaster
    Opinion
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    Ekaterina Blinova
    9343

    Ex-CIA director James Woolsey's Friday interview on Fox News ended up with a sudden confession that the US is used to meddling in foreign elections "for the good of the system." Speaking to Sputnik, Wall Street analyst Charles Ortel stressed that messing with other nations' votes is not behavior that great powers should pursue.

    "Just as most Americans recoil in anger that foreign parties may have meddled in the 2015/6 election cycle, citizens in republics everywhere should expect that their voices, alone, dictate election results," Ortel told Sputnik commenting on former CIA director James Woolsey's remarks on US meddling in foreign elections. According to Ortel, if the ex-CIA chief told the truth, "this is appalling."

    Speaking on the Fox News show The Ingraham Angle, Woolsey admitted that the US has "probably" meddled in other countries' elections. "But it was for the good of system, in order to avoid the Communists from taking over, for example, in Europe in 1947, 1948, 1949, " he added.

    When asked whether the US "mess[es] around in other people's elections" now, the former CIA chief dropped the hint that the controversial practice still goes on: "Only for a very good cause… in the interests of democracy," he mumbled.

    Commenting on Woolsey's words, Ortel noted that "since 1945, seemingly unchecked oversight of America's "intelligence" services appears to have led insulated members of the senior management and rogue agents to believe they know better than we, the people, of the United States."

    "Woolsey's arrogance, which is displayed by many from the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama long march embracing unregulated 'globalism,' may actually unite the political spectrum here to incite true reform of our national security services and ensure pursuit of coherent, sensible goals that actually keep this nation safe here, while promoting the exceptional founding ideals enshrined in our own constitution," the investigative journalist emphasized.

    James Woolsey
    © AP Photo / AP Photo/James Crisp
    James Woolsey

    WikiLeaks on CIA Hacking of French Parties Ahead of 2012 Vote

    In 2015 WikiLeaks shed light on the Obama administration's eavesdropping on German Chancellor Angela Merkel and several of her ministers, triggering nothing short of a scandal which, nevertheless, ended up in nothing.

    Two years later, the non-profit organization specializing on news leaks disclosed that the CIA had infiltrated all major French parties ahead of the presidential elections back in 2012, using both human ("HUMINT") and electronic ("SIGINT") resources.

    However, the revelation did not catch headlines being overshadowed by the story of Russia's alleged interference into the US 2016 presidential vote. In contrast to the CIA's France case, the Russia narrative has not been backed by any evidence yet.

    So why does the CIA interference in European affairs remain neglected by the mainstream media?

    "A small percentage [of Americans] concentrates upon foreign political news, so it is not surprising that so few know the long history of interference by America, and by other great powers, in elections and governance modes around the world," Ortel responded.

    However, the Wall Street analyst stressed that he has "trouble understanding why sorely stretched taxpayers should be financing unchecked US government efforts to spy on allies, or to possibly help allies spy on political or business rivals inside America."

    The spying affair dates back to 2013, when it was alleged that the NSA had bugged German Chancellor Angela Merkel's mobile phone.
    © AFP 2019 / Julian Stratenschulte
    The spying affair dates back to 2013, when it was alleged that the NSA had bugged German Chancellor Angela Merkel's mobile phone.

    'The Arab Spring is Coming to a Neighborhood Near You'

    It is believed that the 2014 February coup in Ukraine was facilitated by the Obama administration and prominent US officials like Republican Senator John McCain. An alleged conversation between Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and the US Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, which leaked on YouTube in February 2014, shed some light on these events.

    It is not the first time when Obama administration officials and senators have meddled in European affairs. During the Russian presidential elections of 2011-2012, Senator McCain went as far as to tweet addressing the Russian president: "Dear Vlad, The Arab Spring is coming to a neighborhood near you."

    For her part, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton endorsed the opposition 2011 protests in Russia, by saying: "We are supportive of the rights and aspirations of the Russian people to be able to make progress and to realize a better future for themselves, and we hope to see that unfold in the years ahead."

    Meanwhile, the chorus of Western mainstream media openly promoted an anti-Kremlin narrative, publishing articles with eloquent headlines such as "The Beginning of the End of Putin."

    "This period must be understood going further back to the fall of the Berlin Wall, the emergence of Eastern European states and the break-up of the Former Soviet Union," Ortel opined. "From 1988 onwards, as elites embrace unregulated globalism, foreign investors were able to purchase many crown jewel assets in league with local politicians, often at fire-sale prices."

    According to the investigative journalist, there is often an economic story behind political rivalries. "Where there is trouble, there frequently is opportunity for 'vulture investors' — people like Marc Rich and George Soros are just two examples," he said.

    He suggested that "tension erupting on Maidan square and escalating thereafter was sparked by seemingly irreconcilable economic battles during the Obama era."

    Ortel referred to Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk, who has seemingly benefited a lot from the regime change in Ukraine. Pinchuk, a longstanding donor to the Clinton Foundation, "have become extraordinarily rich cultivating foreign investors and assembling large industrial and trading interests there and in neighboring nations, in association with the Clinton family through their respective 'foundations'," the Wall Street analyst stressed.

    Ahead of the Euromaidan Revolution, Pinchuk, a son-in-law of former Ukrainian President Kuchma, held the 10th annual meeting in Yalta, Crimea entitled "Changing Ukraine in a Changing World: Factors of Success," with ex-president Bill Clinton among his special guests.

    Ortel expressed hopes that "the Trump Administration will soon be able to purge holdovers from the Obama- (and earlier) holdovers remaining in the State Department and in the security services and then think more sensibly about pursuing projects with foreign nations, including Russia and her people, to our mutual benefit."

    So is it possible that Trump administration officials or influential American politicians will try to meddle in the 2018 presidential vote?

    "I certainly hope US taxpayer dollars are not being spent to that purpose," Ortel highlighted. "Meddling in foreign elections in attempts to sway voters is not behavior that great powers should pursue."

    The views and opinions expressed by Charles Ortel, Ekaterina Blinova are those of the contributors and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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    Tags:
    democratic elections, democracy, election, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Victor Pinchuk, James Woolsey, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, George W. Bush, John McCain, Barack Obama, Germany, United States, Russia, France
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