I just finished reading the 400-pages-or-so book, The Mueller Report, published by the Washington Post. I am glad to have finally done so.
Unlike some on the political left, I think the Mueller investigation was important. I think the publication of most of that report—there’s more than a little bit of it blacked out—is important. I think the coverage by the press since Trump took office of all that the Mueller Report puts together in one place has been very important, critical really. Without that coverage, without the exposure of what sure looks like criminal activity to me, who knows how much worse shape we would be in as far as our continuing to be a striving-for-democracy country.
I think it’s very important that Mueller is finally testifying publicly on Wednesday and hope he and the Democrats do a good job of showing our fellow US Americans the danger we were in and still are in because of what Putin’s government and the Trump campaign did in 2016 and the on-going, attempted cover-up of their interactions by Trump since.
Much of what is in the Mueller Report has been reported publicly already. But it was helpful and instructive to see it all put together, in chronological order, from the Trump campaign/Russian government interactions in 2016 as reported in the first volume, to the attempted cover-up which began during that campaign and escalated once Trump was in the White House, as reported in the second volume.
It is impossible to be objective and not come away from a reading of these hundreds of pages believing that, at a minimum, there was a definite effort led by Trump to cover up his personal and his campaign’s connections to the Russian government.
One fact which emerges clearly in this book is that Trump was involved, through Michael Cohen, until June of 2016 in efforts to move forward a billion dollar Trump Tower Moscow project from which he expected to make lots of money. Trump lied about this project, first saying it wasn’t happening and then saying it was terminated in January of 2016. If you want to know why he and others in his campaign were so friendly to Russia’s government, here you are.
Does this mean that I think the US government has clean hands when it comes to interfering in the elections and internal affairs of other nations? Of course not. What Russia did in 2016 doesn’t come close to what the US has done all over the world going back to 1898 and our military, imperialist conquest of Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Philippines and the so many more countries militarily invaded in the 20th and into the 21st century. The US empire is a very real thing, with about 700 military bases in about 100 countries. No other country, not Russia and not China, comes close to spending what we do on our military to maintain an empire.
But all of that doesn’t make what Russia did right, especially when what they, and others they worked with, did successfully demoralized and undercut the Hillary Clinton campaign and brought into power a fascist President.
Here is the Merriam-Webster definition of fascism: “a political philosophy, movement, or regime (such as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.”
Does anyone doubt that this is what Donald Trump would like to see established in the US?
So I say, go Robert Mueller and your team, and go Democrats, on Wednesday. Defend what democracy we have so we can deepen and expand it going forward through an impeachment inquiry, impeachment (for so many things), and the strengthening of the popular movement to stand up against the 21st century fascists and racists who have taken over the Republican Party.
Ted Glick was a National Coordinator of the National Campaign to Impeach Nixon in 1973-74. He has been a progressive activist, organizer and writer since 1968. Past writings and other information can be found at https://tedglick.com, and he can be followed on Twitter at https://twitter.com/jtglick.