It almost feels as if the Red Scare is back from the distant pages of history. The dead and gone period has come back for the modern era, with fresh fear of the Russian menace. This time, the nation is gripped with the fear that our presidential election was tampered with.
Is President Donald Trump a Russian plant? Was his rise to power aided by a foreign influence, such as the Russian government? The possibilities may very well be there and for many that is a cause for fear.
Is this fear justified? Absolutely.
American politics should be dictated by Americans, especially when it comes to the presidency. The President of the United States essentially represents the country abroad while serving as the chief executive and Commander-in-chief. Having the power through these various points is significant, to say the least. We should guard our political processes from such foreign influence.
This is the point many concerned about the Russian threat make. While it is legitimate to be concerned about external threats, there seems to be a selective concern over it. If the Russian government is found to have interfered with the presidential election, it wouldn’t be the first time a foreign government attempted to influence our own government.
Last year, Congress considered legislation to allow 9/11 victims’ families to sue Saudi Arabia for alleged ties to the September 11th terrorist attacks. The declassification of the final 9/11 Commission Report pages showed a number of ties between the terrorist hijackers and prominent Saudi government officials. Given these revelations, the legislation was the right thing to do.
Saudi Arabia reacted with outrage and it didn’t just issue diplomatic threats and sharp statements. It attempted to buy influence in the United States and swing Congress against the American people, as well as the families of 9/11 victims. This was attempted by employing ten lobbying firms to target Congress over the legislation, which amounted to over a million dollars per month in fees.
Where was the outrage?
The most the Russians did was hack information and leak it. There is no evidence of direct tampering with vote totals, counting machines, or otherwise infiltrating the election. Thus, the idea that the Russian government meddled with the presidential election is dishonest. They provided materials to the public, which once upon a time was called transparency. People still had the free will to judge the materials and cast their votes how they saw fit.
The Saudis, on the other hand, went straight to Congress in an attempt to influence our federal law making body. It wasn’t just a leak of communications like the Russians apparently did. The Saudis instead spent millions on several lobbying firms in an attempt to swing favor in Congress against the families of 9/11 victims.
Who put more effort into attempting to change United States politics? The alleged Russian influence was in relation to politicians in a political race, whereas the Saudi government was using big lobbying firms against 9/11 victims’ families. Which is worse?
Where was the outrage against the attempted interference of the Saudi Arabian government?