Trump was greeted Monday night by hordes of beltway demonstrators, who awaited his return to the White House with shouts of "traitor!" Protesters told the commander-in-chief to "Go back to Russia," after his high-level talks in Finland.
— Alejandro Alvarez (@aletweetsnews) July 17, 2018
The likes of CNN and MSNBC apparently decided more hysteria was needed to help Americans grapple with the wake of an event that has been called the "darkest hour in the history of the American presidency" (usurping the mass incarceration of America's Japanese-descended population by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki by his successor Harry Truman in terms of the gravest sins committed by a US president, not to mention Andrew Jackson's Trail of Tears).
— Alex Rubinstein (@RealAlexRubi) July 17, 2018
The internment of Japanese-Americans followed Japan's bombing of Pearl Harbor in December 1941, an event to which the Helsinki summit has actually been compared. American politicos responded in much the same vein now as then: with utter irrationality, if less violence.
Distinguished Watergate prosecutor Jill Wine-Banks spoke to MSNBC, first about the alleged "hack" of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and then of the Helsinki summit. "It's just as serious to me as the Cuban Missile Crisis in terms of an attack, or the 9/11 attack," she said, apparently failing to remember that the Cuban Missile Crisis never resulted in any overt aggression, and that the attacks against the United States on September 11, 2001, resulted in the deaths of thousands of innocent Americans.
— Aaron Maté (@aaronjmate) July 17, 2018
"The president is taking the side of the people who attacked us instead of trying to prevent a future attack. He has done nothing to make sure that the [midterm] elections four months away are going to be safe," Wine-Banks said.
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) July 17, 2018
It is worth noting that during negotiations between the United States and Russia over a potential cyber security agreement in 2009, when Barack Obama was president, the two sides had notably different motives and never reached an agreement. While Russia sought an international treaty, the US said it was unnecessary. "We really believe it's defense, defense, defense," an anonymous State Department official told the New York Times. "They want to constrain offense. We needed to be able to criminalize these horrible 50,000 attacks we were getting a day." Again, in 2015, Putin pushed for such a treaty, but to no avail.
— Alex Rubinstein (@RealAlexRubi) July 16, 2018
Yet it is Trump, who was not in power during the alleged hack of the DNC, who is not keeping us safe, according to Wine-Banks.
"I would say that his performance today will live in infamy as much as the Pearl Harbor attack or Kristallnacht," Wine-Banks said. Kristallnacht, or "Night of the Broken Glass," was a two-day anti-Jewish pogrom marked by assassinations, arrests of Jewish men and mass destruction of Jewish-owned business, places of worship, or synagogues, and Jewish residences. Kristallnacht is seen in hindsight as a harbinger of the Holocaust
There have been no reports of violence in Helsinki during the summit.
— TheBeat w/Ari Melber (@TheBeatWithAri) July 16, 2018
It was, however, characterized not as a diplomatic event but one of acquiescence. Trump "sided" with Putin and the KGB, said MSNBC host Ari Melber in a segment as ahistoric as the interview with Wine-Banks.
— David Klion 🔥 (@DavidKlion) July 16, 2018
The KGB hasn't existed since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, a tidbit that seems also to be news to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Obama. Less than a month after the 2016 election, Obama told NPR in an interview about "Russian hacking" of the election that Putin was "the former head of the KGB." Putin was an officer with the KGB but he never headed the agency. He did, however, lead the Federal Security Service (FSB) of the Russian Federation.
At press time, it remains unclear what the US is in more dire need of: a chill pill or a history lesson.