'We're at war': 'Committee to Investigate Russia' weaponizes Morgan Freeman in anti-Moscow hysteria
Hollywood actors often speak their minds about domestic politics, but now some in Tinseltown are also joining the anti-Russian chorus, accusing Moscow of using "hacking, Twitter armies, and fake news" to interfere with the US election.
The major player in the campaign is actor-director Rob Reiner, who joined up with The Atlantic's senior editor David Frum – a former adviser to George W. Bush – and former national intelligence director James Clapper, among others, to launch the non-profit 'Committee to Investigate Russia' (CIR).
This is the same James Clapper who said there was no evidence of Russian interference in the election, though he later changed his story.
“To understand the gravity of Russia’s invasion of our democracy, today we launch Committee to Investigate Russia,” Reiner wrote in a Tuesday tweet, linking to the organization's website.
To understand the gravity of Russia's invasion of our democracy, today we launch Committee to Investigate Russia. https://t.co/sOArPWE7p9— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) September 19, 2017
Hollywood's Morgan Freeman also jumped on board, making a two-minute video for the CIR in which the actor blatantly accuses Moscow of interfering in the election.
"We have been attacked," Freeman says at the beginning of the video, adding that "we are at war."
He goes on to suggest a "script" in which "a former KGB spy, angry at the collapse of his motherland, plots a course for revenge," referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
"Taking advantage of the chaos, he works his way up through the ranks of a post-Soviet Russia, and becomes president."
Freeman accuses Putin of establishing an "authoritarian regime" and setting his sights on his "sworn enemy" - the United States.
The actor then accuses Putin of using cyber warfare to "attack democracies around the world."
In particular, Freeman says Putin used social media to "spread propaganda and false information" and convince people in democratic societies to "distrust their media, their political processes, even their neighbors."
He then calls on US President Donald Trump to speak directly to the American people and "tell us the truth," which, according to Freeman, is that the US "came under attack by the Russian government."
Freeman urges Trump to call on Congress and the intelligence community to "use every resource available to conduct a thorough investigation."
The video ends with an invitation for the viewer to "join the fight" alongside the Committee to Investigate Russia, which defines itself as a "nonprofit, non-partisan resource provided to help Americans recognize and understand the gravity of Russia's continuing attacks on our democracy."
Such accusations are incredibly bold, considering zero evidence has emerged for Russia having meddled in the US election in any way.
Moscow has repeatedly denied interfering in the election campaign. In an interview with filmmaker Oliver Stone in June, Putin instead accused the US of meddling in Russia's most recent presidential elections in 2012, by campaigning on the side of the Russian opposition.
Trump has also called accusations of collusion between his administration and Russia "fake news," noting that "[James] Clapper and others stated that there is no evidence."
James Clapper and others stated that there is no evidence Potus colluded with Russia. This story is FAKE NEWS and everyone knows it!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 20, 2017
Even Google said earlier this month that it had failed to unearth any facts that would implicate Moscow in exploiting its advertising tools to manipulate the US election, despite a Facebook release which claimed it had found dozens of Russia-linked fake pages promoting divisive US-related issues.
Meanwhile, Reiner and Freeman are far from the only celebrities to jump on the anti-Russia bandwagon.
Stephen Colbert, host of the 69th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, posted a video hours before the ceremony on Sunday, in which he "talked to the only [Emmy] voters who matter: Russians."
Video: hot leak from Russia! Sorry, not the one you've been waiting for. pic.twitter.com/QyXM3gi8Xg— Stephen Colbert (@StephenAtHome) September 17, 2017
In the clearly-scripted video, Russians say the show 'The Americans' should win an Emmy, despite not being nominated, as it's a show about Russian spies.
Outspoken actor George Takei, best known for his role in 'Star Trek,' took to Twitter last week to accuse Trump of lying while running for president about having no ties with Russia.
Trump the candidate said he had zero Russia ties, even while secretly negotiating for Trump Tower in Moscow. Piece it together. I'll wait. pic.twitter.com/9D5cQ9n3iN— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) September 13, 2017
"Trump the candidate said he had zero Russia ties, even while secretly negotiating for Trump Tower in Moscow. Piece it together. I'll wait," he wrote.