The real story here is the utter irresponsibility of a paper like the Washington Post. It is frequently nothing more than a propaganda outlet for anyone in Washington who finds it politically useful and convenient to use as a transmission belt to Americans. This may be CIA operatives, Pentagon interests, the White House, a member of Congress, a bureaucrat, and so on.
The Vermont grid was not hacked, and there is nothing in this matter that connects to the Russian government. The story has been hyped up and distorted.
What actually happened is that some malware was found on a laptop computer unconnected to the grid. The electric company isolated it and said “The grid is not in danger”. Furthermore, “…We detected the malware in a single Burlington Electric Department laptop not connected to our organization’s grid systems.”
The Washington Post had to correct its first story: “Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly said that Russian hackers had penetrated the U.S. electric grid.” So did the Burlington Free Press.
Governor Shumlin of Vermont jumped in with extreme accusations, saying “Vermonters and all Americans should be both alarmed and outraged that one of the world’s leading thugs, Vladimir Putin, has been attempting to hack our electric grid,…”
The Governor has to learn that fake news that’s influenced by political bias and hidden motives is far more common today than ever before, and that it is far more dangerous to the country than any alleged Russian meddling or hacking. (I say “alleged” because that’s all it is so far. Although the U.S. government released a short report attempting to blame the Russian government for DNC hacking, it was superficial and proved nothing. A number of strong criticisms of it have followed from experts in the field and from Craig Murray.)
Even when these papers correct earlier versions, they still leave in lots of language that’s inaccurate and unproven such as the claim that there is a Russian hacking group that has attacked both the DNC and the electrical grid. The Post says, for example, “U.S. officials say a Russian hacking operating penetrated a utility in Vermont.” We cannot trust what officials say!! Not when they leap to conclusions, not when they themselves quote flimsy reports they read in crummy papers or find tweeted somewhere. What we are lacking are journalists who investigate the story, call the company and find out what’s what before rushing into print. These media do not have editors anymore who insist on journalistic procedures and integrity. This is part of our cultural decline.
These stories are obviously playing right into the hands of those who want to build up Russia as an enemy, now that ISIS is encountering large setbacks and now that Trump has been elected; who want to keep Americans in an ever-fearful state, and who want to maintain an atmosphere that’s like the Cold War in which a variety of intelligence and military organizations can thrive.
If fake news is not bad enough, the Post had an absolutely shameful editorial in which it virtually accuses Trump of being a traitor by ignoring a Russian invasion. They write
“For any American leader, an attempt to subvert U.S. democracy ought to be unforgivable — even if he [Trump] is the intended beneficiary. Some years ago, then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta warned of a ‘cyber-Pearl Harbor,’ and the fear at the time was of a cyberattack collapsing electric grids or crashing financial markets. Now we have a real cyber-Pearl Harbor, though not one that was anticipated. Obama has pledged a thorough investigation and disclosure; the information released on Thursday does not go far enough. Congress should not shrink from establishing a select committee for a full-scale probe.” [Bold emphasis added by me.]
There can be no doubt that an establishment contingent hates Trump’s being elected as president and wants to box him in, no doubt that they are using the Russians to smear Trump, and no doubt that they are using fake news transmitted by the Washington Post. The swamp does need to be drained.
No cyber-Pearl Harbor has occurred! If it had, you’d know it. You’d know it pretty darn fast. You wouldn’t need a phony editorial claiming that it happened. It’s ridiculous to write an incoherent and internally contradictory article in which one sentence accuses the Russians of “an attempt to subvert U.S. democracy” and the very next sentence claims far more than an attempt, namely, a real cyber-Pearl Harbor that means war! The Post isn’t interested in the slightest in protecting democracy in this country, not when it has promoted wrecking it at every opportunity for years and years by overlooking and even encouraging the transgressions of those in power. No, what the Post is after is an enemy like Russia that can be tied to Trump, thereby preventing any motions toward PEACE and FRIENDSHIP among these two great nations. The Post’s editorial is despicable warmongering, the peddling of hostility and hatred.
Even if we discover that Russia is spying and hacking, which I am certain they do because all the big powers do this, this does not mean that we should set them up as implacable thugs and blackguards or emphasize differences as Obama has been doing. The warmongering approach cannot cause them to do what we want anymore than they can make us do what they want by bullying us. In today’s world of advanced weaponry and massive potential destruction, these sorts of games, taunts, insults and petty maneuvers like expelling diplomats are all outmoded and out of date. Attempts to remake countries by CIA-engineered coups are also among yesteryear’s obsolete political methods. Warfare cannot solve our problems or those of Russia and China. What’s in short, short supply? Vision that relies on what we know will make our lives and those of others better. That knowledge is close at hand. I dare say we all know what it is, because it relies on long-known ethical precepts; but this knowledge is being systematically obscured and shunted aside by a very evil ruling elite.7:48 pm on January 1, 2017 Email Michael S. Rozeff