Anti-Russia Hysteria Consumes Mother Jones and the Missoula Independent

by William Skink

America has officially lost its shit over Russia.

When I wrote this poem back in December about Russians infiltrating my coffee pot, I was trying to be absurd. Now, I can envision CNN reporting Kremlin agents spiked their coffee.

Why? Because Russia hacking is being absurdly blamed for the sudden diplomatic bodyslam spearheaded by Saudi Arabia against Qatar. By CNN. Seriously.

US investigators believe Russian hackers breached Qatar’s state news agency and planted a fake news report that contributed to a crisis among the US’ closest Gulf allies, according to US officials briefed on the investigation.

The FBI recently sent a team of investigators to Doha to help the Qatari government investigate the alleged hacking incident, Qatari and US government officials say.

Intelligence gathered by the US security agencies indicates that Russian hackers were behind the intrusion first reported by the Qatari government two weeks ago, US officials say. Qatar hosts one of the largest US military bases in the region.

The alleged involvement of Russian hackers intensifies concerns by US intelligence and law enforcement agencies that Russia continues to try some of the same cyber-hacking measures on US allies that intelligence agencies believe it used to meddle in the 2016 elections.

Sure, CNN. I’m sure it’s the Russians and not Qatar’s shared natural gas field with Iran or the billion dollar ransom Doha paid to rescue a royal hunting party.

The Russia paranoia is everywhere. While partisan blogs like Intelligent Discontent focus primarily on conservative trends in the media landscape with Lee Enterprises and the Sinclair Broadcasting Group’s recent power play, Russia hysteria has infected Mother Jones and even the Missoula Independent.

The criticism of Mother Jones comes with a historical reminder of what the magazine experienced during the original red scare:

Mother Jones recently announced it’s “redoubling our Russia reporting”—in the words of editor Clara Jeffery. Ain’t that rich. What passes for “Russia reporting” at Mother Jones is mostly just glorified InfoWars paranoia for progressive marks — a cataract of xenophobic conspiracy theories about inscrutable Russian barbarians hellbent on subverting our way of life, spreading chaos, destroying freedom & democracy & tolerance wherever they once flourished. . . . because they hate us, because we’re free.

Western reporting on Russia has always been garbage, But the so-called “Russia reporting” of the last year has taken the usual malpractice to unimagined depths — whether it’s from Mother Jones or MSNBC, or the Washington Post or Resistance hero Louise Mensch.

But of all the liberal media, Mother Jones should be most ashamed for fueling the moral panic about Russian “disinformation”. It wasn’t too long ago that the Reagan Right attacked Mother Jones for spreading “Kremlin disinformation” and subverting America. There were threats and leaks to the media about a possible Senate investigation into Mother Jones serving as a Kremlin disinformation dupe, a threat that hung over the magazine throughout the early Reagan years. A new Senate Subcommittee on Security and Terrorism (SST for short) was set up in 1981 to investigate Kremlin “disinformation” and “active measures” in America, and the American “dupes” who helped Moscow subvert our way of life. That subcommittee was created to harass and repress leftist anti-imperial dissent in America, using “terrorism” as the main threat, and “disinformation” as terrorism’s fellow traveller. The way the the SST committee put it, “terrorism” and “Kremlin disinformation” were one and the same, a meta-conspiracy run out of Moscow to weaken America.

And Mother Jones was one of the first American media outlets in the SST committee’s sites.

My how the roles have switched. Disgusting.

The Missoula Independent has provided its platform for a group calling themselves Montanans for National Security. Before getting to their propaganda, it might be good to know who we are talking about:

This piece has been signed by Montanans for National Security Members Julie Sirrs, Andrew Person, Charlie Cromwell, Danny Tenenbaum, Tom Leonard and Randy LeCocq. Our organization includes former national security professionals with extensive experience serving and protecting U.S. interests at home and abroad, including Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, former Defense Intelligence Agency officers, and former diplomats from the U.S. Department of State.

Now, here is the fear-mongering propaganda:

Recently, a small group of Montana citizens committed to calm, thoughtful, nonpartisan engagement joined together to ensure that our representatives in Washington, D.C., hear our concerns about Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential race. That is the concept behind a group we recently formed called Montanans for National Security, and you are invited to join our efforts.

On Jan. 6, 2017, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued a declassified document that listed a number of troubling conclusions. Among them were that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign aimed at the 2016 presidential election; that Russia’s goals included undermining public faith in the U.S. democratic process; and that Moscow is likely to apply lessons learned to future influence efforts worldwide, including those targeting U.S. allies.

First, the idea that this groups is non-partisan is a joke. Why? Because there will never be any concern expressed from a group like this about Hillary Clinton undermining public faith in the democratic process by rigging the primary against Bernie Sanders.

Nope, blaming Russia for running this “influence campaign” has always been about diverting attention away from the evidence of corruption that sunk the Clinton campaign. Thanks to the duplicitous intelligence community who lied this country into wars that have killed hundreds of thousands of people, blaming Russia has fully blossomed into a deep state soft coup against the Trump regime. With that in mind, here is how the MONTANANS FOR NATIONAL SECURITY!!! conclude their propaganda appeal to Montanans:

Take a moment and reflect on the intelligence community’s conclusion that Putin’s goals included undermining public faith in the U.S. democratic process. Whether Putin accomplishes his goal is largely up to us, and the time to act against him is now.

When we come together—not as Democrats or Republicans, but as Americans—to ensure that Congress conducts a thorough and impartial investigation that follows all leads, regardless of where they go, we will have shown the world how robust and strong American democracy really is.

If you are interested in joining our effort to host both our senators for a public discussion in Montana about Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, please email with contact information, and we’ll help you get involved.

Mother Jones and the Missoula Independent have joined the ranks of once respected media sources now peddling xenophobic Russian conspiracies to their respective audiences. This is not just disgusting, it’s dangerous and irresponsible.

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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10 Responses to Anti-Russia Hysteria Consumes Mother Jones and the Missoula Independent

  1. Big Swede says:

    Funny that nothing is said about the Clinton/Russian connections.

    • JC says:

      She’s quite the actress. Could have made her point without mentioning Donald Trump even once. So the theatrics do nothing more than try and deflect any attention from Trump’s problems, which are many.

  2. DGF says:

    I am concerned that the democrats are so focused on the Russia hacking of the election which as we know did not change the results that what is the end game here if there is no fire there. Nancy Keenen head of my Democrat Party has announced her new plan called blue bench. I guess the plan is to get democrats to run for local offices(of course very late as deadline to file for those offices is June 19). The democrats really have no bench nationally,at Montana State Level or at local level.

    • That Blue Bench was the previously the 50 state strategy under Howard Dean, around the time I got started. Nancy Kenan is anything but interested in bringing new voices into the fold. The last words my friend, Dr. James Mahnke, said to me were in response to Nancy Keenan’s retort to my input about including people in the party.

      I didn’t know that he had cancer yet, but he stopped to tell me that he wanted to tell her that we had run seven electoral campaigns at our table. That’s the way the Mt Democratic Party rolls.

  3. steve kelly says:

    I doubt Keenan will want anyone on their ticket opposed to neoliberal economics, or perpetual war, which means the status quo continues. That’s her job, and that’s why Democrats (and Republicans too) are no more than lobbyists for their corporate masters. Say it ain’t so.

    • Big Swede says:

      I’m thinking that they should run a transgendered anti-war socialist that pays contractors on a timely basis.

    • Now it’s on to the Democratic Socialists, Independents, or Greens. All things being equal, it would have been a tough choice between you, Rob Quist, or Tom Breck. May I be forced to make real choi9ces like that in the future.

  4. Big Swede says:

    This just in.

    The bad news is when you leak emails about a corrupt DNC nomination process and you’re lying dead on your door step.

    The good news is they named a bike rack after you.

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