On Sunday, the New York Times published an article on its front page insinuating Russia’s Vladimir Putin is responsible for the DNC email tranche released by WikiLeaks last week. The “newspaper of record” posited “a Kremlin conspiracy to aid Donald J. Trump.”

The Times admits proving such a conspiracy “is notoriously difficult” and then claims “researchers have concluded that the national committee was breached by two Russian intelligence agencies, which were the same attackers behind previous Russian cyberoperations at the White House, the State Department and the Joint Chiefs of Staff last year.” It declares “metadata from the released emails suggests that the documents passed through Russian computers.”

The WikiLeaks release resulted in the resignation of DNC boss Debbie Wasserman Schultz. According to the emails, she had worked to undermine rival Bernie Sanders.

Also on Sunday, the Washington Post ran a story accusing the Russians of working to undermine Clinton in favor of Trump.

Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, stated as fact “Russian state actors” were involved in the WeakLeaks email dump. “There’s evidence Russian state actors broke into the DNC, stole those emails, and there are experts saying they are releasing these emails for the purpose of helping Donald Trump,” Mook told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “I don’t think it’s coincidental these emails were released on the eve of our convention here.”

Mook said Trump and the Russians may be working together to dismantle NATO. “We need to be concerned Trump and his allies made changes to the platform to make it more pro-Russian, and we saw him talking about how NATO shouldn’t intervene [in Russian disputes]. So I think when you put it all together, it’s a disturbing picture,” he said.

George Stephanopoulos, a former Clintonite now hosting “This Week” on ABC News, asked Paul Manafort, Trump’s campaign chairman, pointblank if Donald Trump has connections to the Putin and the Russians. “No, there are not,” Manafort replied. “That’s absurd. And, you know, there’s no basis to it.”

“Trump’s inner circle is populated with advisers and operatives who have long careers advancing the interests of the Kremlin,” Slate declared last week. “In the end, we only have circumstantial evidence about the Russian efforts to shape this election—a series of disparate data points and a history of past interference in similar contests.”

But the pattern is troubling, and so is the premise. If Putin wanted to concoct the ideal candidate to serve his purposes, his laboratory creation would look like Donald Trump. The Republican nominee wants to shatter our military alliances in Europe; he cheers the destruction of the European Union; he favors ratcheting down tensions with Russia over Ukraine and Syria, both as a matter of foreign policy and in service of his own pecuniary interests. A Trump presidency would weaken Putin’s greatest geo-strategic competitor. By stoking racial hatred, Trump will shred the fabric of American society. He advertises his willingness to dismantle constitutional limits on executive power. In his desire to renegotiate debt payments, he would ruin the full faith and credit of the United States. One pro-Kremlin blogger summed up his government’s interest in this election with clarifying bluntness: “Trump will smash America as we know it, we’ve got nothing to lose.”

The neocon Jeffrey Goldberg writes that although he is “not suggesting that Donald Trump is employed by Putin,” he believes “Trump’s understanding of America’s role in the world aligns with Russia’s geostrategic interests,” his “critique of American democracy is in accord with the Kremlin’s critique of American democracy,” and Donald Trump “shares numerous ideological and dispositional proclivities with Putin.”

The WikiLeaks release provided a platform for an assortment of neocons and their fellow travelers, including Robert Kagan, David Brooks, Paul Krugman, Josh Marshall, and others. “It sure looks like someone has been circulating talking points about Trump as Putin’s trojan horse; and that it would be worth it to have a new cold war with Russia– and Iran—if we can only get Hillary Clinton elected,” writes Philip Weiss.

The message sent by the Democrats, the neocons, and the establishment media transcends Donald Trump.

The message: If you are sick and tired of establishment politics, of trade policies and globalist mandates that steal jobs from American workers, of endless wars and domination of the economy by bankers and the Federal Reserve cartel, you are in league with Putin and the Russians who are, after all, former communists.

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