00:46 GMT29 July 2021
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    The book called "The Plot to Scapegoat Russia: How the CIA and the Deep State Have Conspired to Vilify Putin" has been published in the United States, author Dan Kovalik told Sputnik.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) —  The book was published in June by Skyhorse Publishing. The author is a US journalist, human, labor rights lawyer and peace activist, as well as Adjunct Professor of Law at the Pitt Law faculty of the University of Pittsburgh.

    According to Kovalik, accusations of Russia's "meddling in US elections" should be viewed in the broad context of Russian-US relations. Kovalik criticized the confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War and wrote that the United States subsequently interfered in Russia's internal affairs, violated promises and tried to humiliate Moscow. The current talks about "Russian hackers" is an attempt to make Moscow a "scapegoat," which may lead to nothing else than a new dangerous confrontation with Russia, the book's author said.

    Russia Not a Threat

    "I supported detente [when Russia was the Soviet Union] and I support detente now. I see Russia as a potential ally and friend. I don’t see Russia as a threat. I don’t support this Russia bashing that’s happening in the United States, which is largely been done for political gain by the Democrats. I’m not a [US President Donald] Trump supporter, I didn’t vote for Trump, I’m liberal-to-left, actually. But I’m still 'right is right' and 'wrong is wrong', and I don’t support the Democrats using this issue as a bludgeon against Trump, because it’s going to lead or could lead to very serious consequences … there are people pushing for military confrontation [with Russia]," Kovalik said in an interview.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers a speech at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), Russia, June 2, 2017.
    © REUTERS / Sergei Savostyanov/TASS/Host Photo Agency
    US intelligence has accused Russia of hacking the Democratic National Committee (DNC) servers and leaking information compromising former Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton to WikiLeaks prior to US presidential elections in an effort to boost Trump's chances of victory. The US authorities failed to deliver any proofs, as well as the results of official investigation.

    Russia has repeatedly denied the accusations of US intelligence of attempts to influence the elections in the United States, and the Russian president's press secretary Dmitry Peskov called them "absolutely unsubstantiated."

    No Evidence

    Accusations against Russia are questionable for a number of reasons — outdated technology of the alleged hacking, the presence of CIA's technologies allowing them to hack the computer and to make it look like someone else has done it, as well as the Democrats' refusal to give the FBI access to the hacked servers, Kovalik explained, adding that he suspected that hacking might not have happened at all. Referring to the opinion of the CIA veterans, he assumed that it might be a data leak from within the Democratic National Committee.

    In his opinion, there is no evidence of Russia's involvement in hacking and no evidence will be ever presented. "I think that you will not gonna see any evidence… I think it's not gonna be about 'Russian hacking' as much anymore, but about 'obstruction of justice' issues," Kovalik said. According to him, no one cares whether there were "Russian hackers," the investigation will focus on whether President Donald Trump tried to thwart the investigation. This suspicion arose after Trump had fired FBI Director James Comey, who was investigating the "Russian issue."

    New Era of McCarthyism

    Kovalik compared the current FBI and Congress investigations of the "Russian meddling" with the McCarthy era of the late 1940s-mid-1950s, when anti-communist sentiment in society and in the political environment found expression in the search for "un-American citizens." In the era of McCarthyism, many civil servants and public figures were repressed under the pretext of sympathy for the Communism.

    "What is shaping up to be a new McCarthy period, in which people are accused of being dupes for Russia for simply questioning the prevailing anti-Russian discourse, is obviously different from the old one, but with essentially the same intention and effect – to curb dissent, particularly with regard to US foreign policy, which, by any rational measure, is incredibly destructive for our country and the world at large," Kovalik wrote in his book.

    "Russian Hackers"

    Even if the "Russian hackers" were to blame for hacking computers, "no one really thinks it impacted the elections," Kovalik noted. He suggested the elections were impacted by Comey, who announced the resumption of the investigation against Clinton in the old case of unauthorized use of official e-mail 10 days before the voting. Kovalik believes that "Russian hackers" narrative is used by Clinton supporters to ensure her political survival after an unexpected defeat in the elections.

    "The incredible part of it is that it worked. A lot of people seem to believe it, they are not just open to another narrative," Kovalik said.

    Russia's Ally to Confront Challenges

    At the same time, Kovalik admitted that the campaign against Russia has done its job of spoiling Trump's attempts to improve relations with Moscow. "I think that Russia bashing has worked in that sense… Trump really has no choice but to continue the old line against Russia," Kovalik said.

    "In the end, that particular issue will subside, but my fear is that left unchallenged, the narrative about Russia in general will not subside, that will last beyond this political issue and leave very bad relations between these two countries, and this is not what I want to see," he added.

    The world is now facing some of the greatest crises ever seen, namely "global warming, terrorism, nuclear proliferation, mass poverty and constant wars," Kovalik stressed.

    "To ally with a country like Russia to confront such challenges makes all the sense in the world," Kovalik wrote. "In the end, it is important for American citizens, both liberal and conservative, to stand against such madness and to stand for a foreign policy based upon reason and facts. Confrontation with Russia is justified by neither of these," the author pointed out.

    Kovalik concluded by saying that he was not even a Trump supporter, he opposed almost all of his policies, except for Russia policy, and that's the one policy that had been stymied.


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    Russian hackers, 2016 US Presidential election, Dan Kovalik, US, Russia
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