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Among the most fascinating aspects of the brouhaha over supposed Russian meddling in America’s electoral system is the total silence in the U.S. mainstream press about U.S. meddling in the political affairs of other countries.
Consider the mass outrage and indignation among the mainstream press that Russia would actually want to help a U.S. presidential candidate who favors normalizing relations with Russia over a candidate that was determined to do the opposite.
Why not the same outrage against the U.S. national-security establishment for helping its favorite people come to office in foreign countries?
By their silence regarding U.S. meddling in foreign countries, one could easily draw the conclusion that the U.S. mainstream press is saying the following: It’s wrong for Russia to meddle in the U.S. electoral system but it’s okay for the U.S. national-security establishment (i.e., the military, CIA, and NSA) to meddle in the electoral affairs of foreign countries.
But if that’s their position — and it certainly seems like that is their position based on their silence — then why don’t they explain it? Why is it considered okay for the U.S. national-security establishment to meddle but not okay for the Russian national-security establishment to meddle?
Or to put it another way, if it’s wrong in principle to meddle, then why is the U.S. government doing it, and why isn’t the U.S. mainstream press condemning both U.S. meddling and Russia meddling?
After all, even if Russian officials actually did do what they are accused of doing, it actually pales in comparison to what U.S. officials do when they meddle in foreign countries. After all, what’s a few Facebook ads and hacking into email accounts compared to murder, kidnapping, bribery, sanctions, embargoes, and coups?
In the 1970s, the U.S. government meddled in the Chilean presidential election, with bribery, kidnapping, murder, and a coup. Trying to prevent the democratically elected president, Salvador Allende, from taking office, the CIA attempted to bribe Chilean congressmen from confirming Allende as president.
But that was nothing compared to what happened after that. The CIA conspired to kidnap the commanding general of the Chilean armed forces. The reason? Gen. Rene Schneider refused to go along with the military coup that U.S. officials were demanding. Schneider was actually shot dead during the kidnapping attempt.
How’s that compared to some Facebook ads and email hacking?
Whether you call the kidnapping/murder of Rene Schneider “collusion” or “conspiracy,” there is no doubt that the plot originated in Washington and Virginia. There is no statue of limitations when it comes to felony-murder and conspiracy to commit felony-murder. Why not call for an official investigation to determine whether anyone involved in that collusion/conspiracy is still alive and should be brought to justice? Why the silence on the Schneider kidnapping/murder?
Once U.S. national-security state officials removed Schneider as an obstacle, that paved the way for the U.S. military coup, which brought U.S.-favored Gen. Augusto Pinochet to power, along with the rapes, torture, abuse, incarceration, disappearances, or executions of tens of thousands of innocent people, including two Americans, Charles Horman and Frank Teruggi. Why not criminally prosecute anyone who is still alive and who was involved in the collusion/conspiracy?
For that matter, let’s not forget the U.S. national-security establishment’s intentional destruction of the democratic systems in Guatemala and Iran in the 1950s.
For those who say that all that is ancient history, how about the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, the one based on bogus fears of WMDs by U.S. officials? Or the U.S. regime-change operations in Libya, Syria, and Afghanistan, which have left countless dead and the entire countries devastated? It’s hard to get better examples of meddling in the political affairs of other countries than those. Or how about the U.S. national-security establishment’s anti-democratic coup in Ukraine, which, along with NATO expansion into Eastern Europe, is the root of the Ukraine-Russia-U.S. crisis? Why aren’t those U.S. meddlers being charged with criminal meddling and conspiracy to criminally meddle?
For that matter, how about the decades-old U.S. embargo against Cuba, whose aim has always been regime change. The same, of course, applies to the US. sanctions against Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and, of course, Russia. Why not investigate and prosecute those meddlers?
The U.S. media helps to remind us of an old principle: When one points his finger at someone in an accusatory way, oftentimes there are three fingers pointing back at the accuser and his silence.
Jacob G. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation. He was born and raised in Laredo, Texas, and received his B.A. in economics from Virginia Military Institute and his law degree from the University of Texas. He was a trial attorney for twelve years in Texas. He also was an adjunct professor at the University of Dallas, where he taught law and economics.