Russophobia Digest Part 9: Spy sex, no evidence, and the Manafort trial charade goes on
This week’s slice of Russophobia has it all, a sex scandal, parliamentary intrigue, a lack of evidence and the possible end of season cliffhanger we all saw coming in the Paul Manafort trial.
Here’s a look at the last seven days or so of Russophobia.
Manafort’s fait acomm-plea
The conviction of Donald Trump’s campaign manager Paul Manafort has essentially been like watching Russophobia in slow motion.
Russia Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was the latest figure to point out this week that while Manafort was actually convicted over work he did in Ukraine, somehow Moscow has been painted as the real bad guy.
Lo and behold, Manafort is doing a plea deal with Robert Mueller, the special counsel tasked with making sure Russia is blamed for everything that’s going wrong in US politics... or something like that.
Because why get justice for dodgy dealings in Ukraine, when you can pin something on Russia instead. Classic Russophobia.
For Sex Sake
Russian activist Maria Butina is still locked up in the US on charges which basically amount to being a Russian, but she saw a small victory of sorts in court this week. US District Judge Tanya Chutkan told prosecutors to stop accusing Butina of using “sex in exchange for a position within a special interest organization.”
The prosecutors were forced to backtrack, admitting that they had misunderstood the conversation which their claims were based on. Reading between the lines, your average Russophobe can’t imagine a scenario where a Russian woman might have sex if it doesn’t involve espionage, because that’s what happens in all the movies.
The lack of evidence suggests... Russia
“The evidence is not yet conclusive enough... for the U.S. to formally assign blame to Moscow.” This phrase was used in an NBC report which had instead ‘informally’ blamed Moscow for being behind mysterious “attacks” (for the record, those arse-covering quote marks aren’t RT’s) using even more mysterious brain-zapping weapons against US diplomats in Cuba and China.
So it may not have happened, they don’t know what may not have happened and there’s not really enough evidence to blame anyone for what may not have happened.
The only thing those anonymous intelligence sources know for sure, is that the Russians did it. That’s good enough for the Russophobes over at NBC.
Smears by stealth
The UK Parliament is becoming extremely skilled in the use of Russophobia as a political weapon. This week, Theresa May and her Tories wanted to take their regular swipe at former SNP leader Alex Salmond, for no particular reason of note.
Rather than directly use his name though, they disguised the attack as part of a condemnation of RT and anyone associated with it. If anyone is using RT for propaganda, it’s the British establishment in a Russophobic smear campaign.
Salmond suggested May should actually watch the show he presents on RT before using her precious time in Parliament passing comment.
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