Published at 06:55 on 15 November 2016
Lets play with the centrist-to-conservstive, internationalist, maintain-the-Empire crowd’s toys for a bit. While I fret about the domestic consequences of this thing from a leftist point of view, the international ones as viewed from a traditional centrist, military and intelligence community view are perhaps even more frightening.
Democracy and freedom being will stop being concerns of the USA. Now from my perspective they never really were a super-big one. But I’m forced to admit they were at least a priority, just one that lost to realpolitik all too often. Now it’s just going to be naked force in places like Syria. Expect our back to be turned on Rojava. This sort of thing will burn away pretty much all of the international goodwill the USA has. It will create misery which will serve as an incubator for more terrorism.
It really is likely that the Russian government was involved in Wikileaks. Yes, this is the typical “the evidence is classified, but trust us” you get out of these guys. But I can’t ever remember them intervening in an election like this. That, plus the Hatch Act, makes the press release likely to be true. Domestically, Trump’s almost unbelievable incompetence led him to not plan a transition due to fear of jinxing the election. So now they’re forced to do one in hurry, off the cuff.
In other words, it appears as if Russia has successfully managed to weaken and destabilize its biggest geopolitical adversary. Will it do something brash and unexpected on or right after Inauguration Day? That would be the time the effect of the ill-planned transition would be maximized and thus the USA would be at its weakest and most vulnerable. The silver lining to this dark cloud is that this would help start out the Trump presidency on such a bad note that it would likely never be able to recover.
Don’t just take my word on all of this. This election has been noteworthy for the number of career national security Republicans who announced they were going to vote for a Democratic president.