For over a year, corporate news outlets have been promoting a fear campaign against Russia similar to the Red Scare sensationalism of the Cold War. The real causes for these renewed tensions seem to be NATO’s expansion to Russia’s doorstep, US sanctions against Russia and US intervention in Libya, Ukraine and Syria -- although Western media continues the more simplistic narrative that Vladimir Putin as a Bond-esque supervillain bent on global domination.
Following Hillary Clinton’s surprising electoral defeat, however, a resurgent neoconservative coalition of intelligence officials, corporate news pundits and senior politicians from both parties seems determined to turn dissatisfaction for Trump into support for military action against Russia.
During the election, Clinton and GOP hawks voiced support for a no-fly zone in Syria, and did not shy away from talk about “shooting down Russian planes” -- or as John Kasich said, that "it's time we punched Russians in the nose."
This was also around the time that it was revealed that Air Force Gen. Phillip Breedlove had been plotting against Pres. Obama to escalate tensions with Russia over Ukraine.
While anger over Trump’s victory has allowed an avenue for many on the American left to become targets for Russophobia, leaders in the Green Party are taking a stand against the hawkish propaganda coming from Democratic leaders.
Speaking at the Occupy Inauguration event in Washington, D.C. last week, former Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein stated:
"We have no one to thank but the Democratic Party for the outcome of this election. Even though they are working overtime right now to try to blame this on the Russians. But as hard as I and others look for the actual evidence, that evidence is no more than that, 'We the security agencies agree that the Russians did it.' Well, would you please show us some evidence?"
These statements could be surprising to some, as Stein’s earlier challenge of the election results in three states might have suggested she was sympathetic to the outrageous claim that Russia possibly hacked the voting machines.
Stein’s campaign manager, 2004 Green Party presidential nominee David Cobb, recently explained that claims of Russian hacking had nothing to do with pursuing a recount:
"It wasn't until a week or so later that we really began the messaging and tightened it considerably around these outrageously foolish lying, around the allegations of quote 'Russian hacking.' I want to be crystal clear on this, Steve, there is zero hard evidence of that... So it is at best a bit of misdirection, at worst, as you say, a bit of 'neoconservative hysteria' that we don't want to play into. And if you look at the frequently asked question on Jill2016.com, you see we are clear, unambiguous in our rejection of that outrageous claim."
Similarly, many others are now standing up against this latest neocon fear campaign. Over recently months, the Russian hacking narrative has been blasted by the likes of cyber-security expert John McAfee, Patrick Lawrence of The Nation, Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone, Glenn Greenwald and Jeremy Scahill of The Intercept, and former US Congressman Ron Paul.
While the hawk coalition to reignite the Cold War is not limited to one party, apparently neither is its dove opposition.