back to article Indictment bombshell: 'Kremlin intel agents' hacked, leaked Hillary's emails same day Trump asked Russia for help

American prosecutors have accused 12 suspected Russian spies of hacking Democrat and Hillary Clinton campaign officials to publicly leak their sensitive emails and potentially influence the 2016 US Presidential Election. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein today announced criminal conspiracy charges against a dozen people …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Shooting the messengers much?

    So everyone else is to blame except those who wrote those e-mails, used the public channels for it and were basically caught off guard.

    See... if I share false threats or accusations through e-mail and those leak and the audience gets seriously upset by that: who is to blame? Me for outing that shit in the first place or the hacker who exposed me?

    Note: these were semi-public e-mail channels. Why do you think the US has such problems with politicians using public services (or semi-public phones) to sent political data (something many democrats easily ignored I might add, it wouldn't be the first time we read about official warnings). You reap what you sow in my opinion.

    Also: how does one "affect" an election?

    How gullible do you have to be if you let random posts on the Internet affect your decision on who to vote for? That is the one thing I simply cannot comprehend. Sure: I can understand that some people allow for this, each to their own, but how gullible do you have to be... But if you are that gullible then this also leads me to another question: if people really are this gullible that they'd change their mind based on a random post on the Internet then what are the chances that they didn't simply change their mind from going to the bathroom? You know... the "let's shit on the politicians" kind of idea and suddenly do a 180 degrees turn.

    If people are such huge flipflops... then why does it have to be the Russians? For all I know it could be a good looking girl or a guy campaigning which then changed their minds.

    Proof please.

    Say; what about that phone Hillary used to share political data with? Did that got hacked too? Gee, I wonder how that could have happened. If she set the example that "do whatever you like" then.. yah.. sorry, they had their warnings.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      Not even that.

      Timed to coincide with the Helsinki meeting.

      The RepubliTrumps vs Republicans vs Democrats war in the states is not dissimilar from the UK Tory civil wars. The sole difference is that due to the sheer size of the monsters bullies in the playground it is the whole world which suffers from them going at each others' throats.

      As far as Russia doing what USA has been doing (including significantly more invasive methods) around the world and trying to do in Russia since WW2 - if you cannot stand the heat get out of the kitchen. Sore losers, grow the f*ck up.

      1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

        Re: anonymous coward

        "Sore losers, grow the f*ck up."

        Astonishing levels of whataboutism.

        Of course, the USA (and the UK and other nations) have engaged in counter-political operations over the decades.

        Right now, Russia's been caught with its hand in the cookie jar, allegedly. People, bafflingly, defending Moscow are the sore losers who need to grow up, I argue.

        C.

        1. G Mac
          Mushroom

          Re: anonymous coward

          Absolutely there has to be whataboutism.

          That is because there are a bunch of elected folks, along with neocon pundits, that say this is "an act of war". Try searching for "russian hacking act of war".

          For example, try this from this Intercept article https://theintercept.com/2018/02/19/a-consensus-emerges-russia-committed-an-act-of-war-on-par-with-pearl-harbor-and-911-should-the-u-s-response-be-similar/:

          'The claim that Russian meddling in the election is “an act of war” comparable to these events isn’t brand new. Senators from both parties, such as Republican John McCain and Democrat Jeanne Shaheen, have long described Russian meddling in 2016 as an “act of war.” Hillary Clinton, while promoting her book last October, described Russia’s alleged hacking of the DNC and John Podesta’s email inbox as a “cyber 9/11.” And last February, the always war-hungry Tom Friedman of the New York Times said on “Morning Joe” that Russian hacking “was a 9/11-scale event. They attacked the core of our democracy. That was a Pearl Harbor-scale event.”'

          Yikes. Keeping in mind that the US has been meddling in other countries elections quite a bit since WW2 gives some perspective that hopefully (but of course won't) will give these folks pause when calling out the Marines, literally.

          Of course the US is the big dog so it can expect to give all a good beat down. Except in asymmetric warfare, AKA Afghanistan and Iraq.

          So yes, this is whataboutism, but only to allow us to say STFU to the war-happy nutjobs who want to pick fight with the 2nd biggest nuclear power on the possibly short-time-to-live planet.

          And ESPECIALLY given that nobody seems to deny that the leaked documents are genuine.

          Icon for obvious reasons.

          1. jmch Silver badge

            Re: anonymous coward

            Trump's relationship with Russia and any 'help' he might have gotten to get elected is just the tip of the iceberg with respect to how he is subverting democracy. I found this article quote sums it up nicely:

            "All that matters in the GOP is fealty to the cult-leader. He has done things in foreign policy — allying with the Kremlin against Western Europe, launching an impulsive trade war against allies and rivals, assaulting NATO, boosting foul dictators for nothing in return — that the Republican Party would crucify any Democratic president for. And still they worship.

            Free trade, NATO, steadfast resistance to totalitarian regimes like North Korea, suspicion of the Kremlin, and support for law enforcement, including the FBI and CIA, were all nonnegotiable elements of GOP policy only two years ago. They’re all gone now. How’s that for authoritarian power? "

            That "fealty to the cult-leader" is s prime indicator of nascent fascism

            1. tom dial Silver badge

              Re: anonymous coward

              Contrary to much opinion, votes count in US elections. The rules may be a bit convoluted (e. g., the electoral college). They may deviate from some ideal (e. g., two senators from each state irrespective of population, or declining to let convicted felons vote, sometimes even by those who served their sentence in full). Most importantly, votes count only if they actually are cast.

              Donald Trump was elected president because he channeled and fed back to enough voters (not just eligible-to-voters) what they already believed. Russians may have helped, by their tweets, their Facebook and other ads, and their release of stolen DNC and DCCC emails, some of which doubtless caused extreme embarrassment. In the end, because of the facts that underlie political opinion research, it will be essentially impossible to determine how much, or even in what direction, Russian dirty tricks affected the election outcome. It should be noted that nothing the Russians are alleged to have done is qualitatively different from campaign practices well enough known from years past. Doubters may wish to consider the US elections of 1972 (Nixon, Watergate), or 1800 and 1804 (Thomas Jefferson). There are other examples.

              Donald Trump was elected as a Republican, to a large degree by voters who identified as Republicans. GOP "fealty to the cult-leader" is a direct result of that fact and the fact that almost all elected officials become job seekers in inverse relation to the time remaining to the next election. Those elected from districts where 2016 support for Trump was great will be very hesitant to call out Trump unless he does something that clearly and decisively offends constituents. Note that this is true almost as much for Democrats as Republicans. Unless Trump really goes far afield, we are hardly more likely to see strong, unambiguous, anti-Trump statements from the Democrats Heidi Heitkamp (D-SD) or Joe Manchin (D-WV) than from John Hoeven (R-SD) or Shelley Caputo (R-WV).

              Free trade and national security and foreign policy considerations notwithstanding, Republican politicians and operatives know that in many areas it will not go well for them to oppose Trump too strenuously despite the fact that the associated policies are generally terrible and lead to nothing good in the long run. They will stand with Trump until election results free them, in many cases by installing Democrats in their place. And not a minute longer.

              H. L. Mencken's Baltimore Evening Sun political reports, many available in collections, should be required reading for anyone who hopes to understand US politics. They ring as true now, six decades after his death as when written between 1920 and 1950.

        2. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

          Re: anonymous coward

          I would wager that just every major power and many of the minor ones engage is these types of disinformation campaigns. I would also wager these campaigns are generally a waste of money as they have very little effect on the target country. However, this one has succeeded because the Donkeys need an convenient excuse for why they lost other than they were idiots. The Russians did not tell Hildafelon not to campaign in Wisconsin or Pennsylvania; her inept staff did. Bubba (the ex P) tried to tell her and her incompetents she needed to make several swings in these states otherwise they might go for Blowhard. It would have also helped if the Donkeys had run a candidate that was not widely detested thus giving Blowhard votes he never would otherwise have gotten. These are self inflicted wounds.

          1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

            Re: Re: anonymous coward

            "they have very little effect on the target country"

            Doesn't matter - a hand was, allegedly, caught in the cookie jar. if you're gonna spy and do counter intelligence, then at least do it right.

            Also, Clinton's campaign was flawed. Like, really flawed. It's easy to see that. Again, this isn't about candidates. It's about securing the West's systems, and snaring those who seek to cause mischief.

            C.

            1. G Mac
              Mushroom

              Re: anonymous coward

              And what if your hand was caught in the cookie jar over 80 times? If once was not "doing it right", what is 80?

              And by inference, it seems that if you DON'T get caught it's all good sport, right?

              https://www.globalresearch.ca/us-interfered-in-elections-of-at-least-85-countries-worldwide-since-1945/5601481

              "It's about securing the West's systems"

              Ah so for Johnny Foreigner well he will just have to look at the ceiling and think of...

              This is not to say doing this kind of thing IS ok by anybody. But it does mean that the immediate pearl clutching and heading to the fainting couch needs to take rest.

              More jaw-jaw less war-war.

              1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
                Mushroom

                Re: "It's about securing the West's systems"

                Oh, you must mean the ones that are now 100% Managed from or are physically in India... ????

                This won't end well.

                Bring those systems home people. You know it makes sense from a security POV.

                Or

                See Icon

              2. Richard Wharram

                Re: anonymous coward

                "https://www.globalresearch.ca/us-interfered-in-elections-of-at-least-85-countries-worldwide-since-1945/5601481"

                A grey propaganda site? Thanks for showing where you get your talking points from.

            2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

              The Bigger Picture Show .....

              It's about securing the West's systems, and snaring those who seek to cause mischief. ...... a Reg hack

              Hmmm? .... Defending the indefensible and inequitable is the Fine Folly of Prime Fools and that be undoubtedly a Typically Sub-Prime Product. And if the West's systems are so defaulted to pay homage, grace and favour to the continued acceptance of the paper dollar as a primary means to success with the avoidance of a Militaristic Pax Americana Intervention in a Manic Adventurism, then is there a major Houston problem for the mischief will always be escalating and strengthening, and quite naturally become overwhelming.

              Hmmm? ..... If Hillary was a military hawk, and hell bent on future crazy mischief, it seems as if the West's systems are working just fine.

            3. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

              Re: Re: Re: anonymous coward

              It's about securing the West's systems, and snaring those who seek to cause mischief. ...... a Reg hack

              Hmmm? .... Defending the indefensible and inequitable is the Fine Folly of Prime Fools and that be undoubtedly a Typically Sub-Prime Product. And if the West's systems are so defaulted to pay homage, grace and favour to the continued acceptance of the paper dollar as a primary means to success with the avoidance of a Militaristic Pax Americana Intervention in a Manic Adventurism, then is there a major Houston problem for the mischief will always be escalating and strengthening, and quite naturally become overwhelming.

              Hmmm? .... If Hillary was a military hawk, and hell bent on future crazy mischief, it seems as if the West's systems are working just fine.

            4. LucreLout Silver badge
              Trollface

              Re: anonymous coward

              Doesn't matter - a hand was, allegedly, caught in the cookie jar. if you're gonna spy and do counter intelligence, then at least do it right.

              Presumably you mean farcebook data slupring links all over your site while publicly decrying their behaviour?

              Yes, to an extent, I'm slightly trolling you, but only because I've not seen a reasoned argument for why El Reg plays both sides of the farcebook game. Any chance of an article on that please? Who knows, I might even agree with your reasoning and STFU.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: anonymous coward

          Russia had a lot to gain from destabilised US and EU, and hence the involvement with brexit and trump.

          I feel sorry for the idiots that got sucked in by the all russian funded fake news propaganda. The weird thing is they aren't even feeling stupid, they are too stupid to feel stupid.

        4. JEDIDIAH
          Devil

          Re: anonymous coward

          So what? If you really think a few Russian hackers can compete with CNN, Facebook, or the Koch Brothers than we're all in much more serious trouble than anyone is willing to acknowledge.

          1. bombastic bob Silver badge

            Re: anonymous coward

            "If you really think a few Russian hackers can compete with CNN, Facebook, or the Koch Brothers"

            or George Soros [via "non-profits" like media matters, moveon.org, and chaos groups like ANTIFA with their 'rent-a-mob' protests and paid-for camera-visible riot-thugs]

            or the "deep state" itself - right Mr. Strzok?

            I have a few predictions on all of this:

            a) if ANY of those "indicted" by Mueller EVER get into a courtroom, it'll end up like it's been for THIS case in which there really IS no evidence, but a symbolic "we do not expect it will ever go to trial" indictment. And lots of delay tactics. [Apparently, Mueller never thought his bluff would be 'called'].

            b) this is all a symbolic waste of time as chaos is being spread by those "deep state" activists who simply want to disrupt the Trump presidency because they're angry he won the election

            c) the REAL "collusion" is inside the D.O.J. and people watching "the other news" have known this for over a YEAR.

            d) Mueller's "Get Trump at Any Cost" witch hunt is about to collapse into a black hole into which money and time will flow, ultimately along with the careers of those involved. Not much of an "Insurance Policy".

            Trump and Putin do have one thing in common: they know how to play poker, and they're good at calling bluffs. It's about time to grab the popcorn, because in the next month or two, things are going to get wild, crazy, and "not good" for the anti-Trump "deep state" types that seem overly obsessed on this "Russian collusion" nonsense.

            1. Richard Wharram

              Re: anonymous coward

              "Deep-state"

              "Soros"

              "Antifa rent-a-mob"

              "Strzok"

              Shit, I need one more for bingo here. Could you mention "World War III" in your next post?

    2. tom dial Silver badge

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      Indeed, far more is needed than the shouting and hand-waving on display so far. The Facebook postings published a while back were pretty unpersuasive, targeted as they were to people almost sure to support their messages. That is much like the shock and horror over the Cambridge Analytica stuff that the Republican party organization, by one report, found seriously deficient to what they already had from state public records and other commercial sources.

    3. Comments are attributed to your handle
      Holmes

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      "messengers" - is that what you call them?

    4. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      How gullible do you have to be if you let random posts on the Internet affect your decision on who to vote for?

      Then the same can be said for flyers, mailed political ads, tv, radio, etc. And not just politics, everything is advertised. Both good products and absolute trash ones. So perhaps gullible isn't the right word here as advertising seems to affect most people or there wouldn't be so much advertising.

      1. tom dial Silver badge

        Re: Shooting the messengers much?

        Whether the advertising, whether flyers, mailed, tv/radio, or internet actually has much effect is something about which I suspect many in the advertising business might well be loath to discuss in depth. Advertising volume probably is not a good indicator of effectiveness.

        Advertising probably is an effective way to provide notice of new or redesigned products or services, and some of the same effect may exist in politics, especially for first time candidates and lower offices, but long-standing political leanings are quite tightly bound in various ways to who we are and how we perceive ourselves, others, and the world. They are a lot harder to change than preferences for utility items and consumables. That, among other things, is a basis for the reaction to Cambridge Analytica and social media, both to campaigners who used them and the targeted recipient class. I suspect both the optimism of the former and the horror of (some of) the latter greatly exceed the actual effect, especially when one considers that all major candidates use much the same techniques and the net effect likely will be small. In the US 2016 election, the shocked, but very extensive and free media coverage probably benefited Trump more, by several orders of magnitude, than any social media interventions, whether by the campaign or by the Russians, whose effort, while similar, was at least two orders of magnitude smaller.

        The alleged Russian hacking of Democratic party and campaign organizations is much more serious, although not new or particularly unusual in US politics except for being done by a foreign government. Hacking directed at government and private sector election management organizations is more serious still, and as far as I know has not been done previously in the same way, or by foreign governments. The indictments issued today, although largely symbolic, are entirely warranted, and probably should be followed up by other actions.

    5. TheVogon

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      "Also: how does one "affect" an election?"

      Ask the Russians apparently. And affect is the correct word.

      "How gullible do you have to be if you let random posts on the Internet affect your decision on who to vote"

      Being a US citizen it seems. After all enough of them seem to be influenced by random posts denying the reality of anthropomorphic global warming.

    6. Warm Braw Silver badge

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      How gullible do you have to be

      Having witnessed the jaw-dropping spectacle of Trump's flailing incoherence in Britain this week and heard the fact-shredding positive spin emanating from his supporters, I conclude that, far from plumbing the depths of gullibility, we are merely in the shallows: expect the insanity to get worse (or better, if that's what you voted for).

    7. oldcoder

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      The criminal act was the person requesting the criminal action.

      So far the INSTIGATOR of the criminal actions has not been charged...

    8. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      "if people really are this gullible that they'd change their mind based on a random post on the Internet"

      Because not just some random post that a voter may come across on the internet. It's thousands, tens of thousands of posts all over the internet, then being reported on by the media. It's how viral marketing and "nudge policies" work. A little drip drip drip can sway people over time, especially the "don't knows". It's not new.

      1. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

        Re: Shooting the messengers much?

        "A little drip drip drip can sway people over time, especially the "don't knows". It's not new."

        Indeed, those posts kept suggesting that Clinton had run an illegal email server and deleted it's contents when challenged. Obviously untrue, but left people with the impression that Hilary was dodgy. Same for those posts alleging that Hilary was no less old and doddery cf Trump. All those fake videos with coughs added. That footage of some actor fainting: fake! And after the mainstream media made much of how Trump holds onto the railing as he descends from his aeroplane: another paid actor resembling Clinton "tripping" as she boarded a plane. So fake, so obvious. Just like the lies doing the rounds that Obama deported 2.5million illegals. And all that video footage where prominent Democrats called for secure borders, the recognition of Jerusalem as Isreal's capital, all fake. But it was probably enough to convince some folk that Trump was worth a go.

      2. JEDIDIAH
        Mushroom

        Re: Shooting the messengers much?

        ...versus the pervasive narrative posing as "journalism" that the vast majority of the media pushes constantly? The vast chunk of the "professional" news media are shameless party rags shilling for one particular political party. Compared to that, a few more posts on social media is nothing to get your knickers in a twist over. It doesn't even shift the needle when compared to what nonsense people are already sharing amongst themselves.

        Democrats demonstrated that they have a much larger wing nut contingent during the last election to a level that's much more embarasing if you previously identified as liberal or left or center left. You can't blame the Russians for that.

        Even if the nonsense was authored by a Russian plant, our own wing nuts willingly propagated it. At a certain point, you have to take responsibility for your own stupid. Doesn't matter if you are the DNC or some random nit wit.

    9. MonkeyCee

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      "How gullible do you have to be if you let random posts on the Internet affect your decision on who to vote for? That is the one thing I simply cannot comprehend."

      The number of people who seem to revel in the offence their political positions cause to certain other groups, and the magnifying effect of agreeing/arguing with randos on the net seems to belie that.

      Used to be you needed politics, religion or sport to start a fight. Now you can stabbed over the wrong kind of veganism* :D

      *roadkill is vegan, right?

    10. sisk

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      Also: how does one "affect" an election?

      How gullible do you have to be if you let random posts on the Internet affect your decision on who to vote for? That is the one thing I simply cannot comprehend.

      It's really not that difficult to understand. Every piece of information you encounter regarding a person or idea will have an impact on your opinion. If you encounter enough pieces of information that challenge your own views sooner or later you're going to start questioning those views. That's not gullibility. It's just the way the human mind works. And we're not talking about "a" random post on the internet. We're talking about hundreds or thousands of them. Anyone who is undecided or not strongly committed to their decision will be swayed somewhat by that. Only someone who has closed their mind to the possibility that their views might be wrong would be totally immune to that sort of influence.

      Personally I'm of the opinion that it takes a serious lack of introspection to understand this concept. I see people who say they think for themselves but immediately reject any information that challenges the ideas they've already formed, regardless of the obvious merit of the information in question, exactly as you are doing here.

      At this point it's bleedingly obvious that Russia attempted to sway the US election in favor of Trump. Even if they had zero impact - which, in my opinion, only a fool would believe - that is worrisome. They may or may not have been what made an impact in the election, but the fact that the man they wanted as US President is now President is troubling to say the least.

    11. ecofeco Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      Blah blah blah.

      Russians interfered in an election of the other superpower on earth. Do you think YOUR country is safe?

      Do you LIKE having Trump at the head of a superpower? Do you NOT realize the danger we are ALL in?

      Thank you Watson, that will be all.

      1. JEDIDIAH
        Mushroom

        Re: Shooting the messengers much?

        If you are worried about the elected monarch then the pooch has already been thoroughly screwed. It's screwed because you've already subverted the system. The system is supposed to prevent th elected monarch from becoming a problem. THIS is the proper lesson to learn from the failure of the Wiemar Republic. If you think that you need to "fear men that say mean things", then you completely misunderstand history and governance.

    12. jasonbrown1965
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      "How gullible do you have to be if you let random posts on the Internet affect your decision on who to vote for?"

      Gullible enough, apparently, given the fairly close election results. Gullible, or angry enough, including an 8% black voting block that went to Trump, after being targeted with FB ads reminding them of old Clinton comments about blacks being criminal "super-predators".

      After eight years of Obama failing to do much for change we can believe in (after being left with a dinosaur-sized economic dump by Bush), there were enough people angry at failed promises to want to chuck politics into the history bin. Which is what they did.

      In doing so, they exposed a system that has been dysfunctional long before Trump, whose election just adds an orange coloured hazard light atop the whole steaming mess.

      Trump is a loathsome, racist, sexist retard, yes. But given abject failure by supposedly far more principled politicians to make an impact on what Eisenhower so famously warned about decades ago? Maybe we need to pay less attention to the messengers and much more to the message.

    13. davenewman

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      > How gullible do you have to be if you let random posts on the Internet affect your decision on who to vote for?

      There were proud boasts in detailed blog posts after the US Presidential elections claiming that their voter suppression campaigns tipped the balance against Hilary Clinton.

      The Trump campaigners did not try to get more people to vote for him. They made sure that women who might vote for Hilary Clinton saw lots of words and images attacking her. They didn't vote for Trump, but once doubt was seeded in their minds, they didn't vote at all.

      1. JEDIDIAH
        Devil

        Re: Shooting the messengers much?

        > There were proud boasts in detailed blog posts after the US Presidential elections claiming that their voter suppression campaigns

        In Yankee states? Seriously? That's an epic bit of geographical and historical fail there.

    14. strum

      Re: Shooting the messengers much?

      >So everyone else is to blame except those who wrote those e-mails, used the public channels for it and were basically caught off guard.

      It's really very simple. If an American politician conspired with a foreign power to subvert an election, that is treason (or some variety thereof). Blaming the victim is never a defence.

  2. pɹɐʍoɔ snoɯʎuouɐ
    Mushroom

    helllo shit..... the fan is that way ------>

  3. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Re: "Did the Russian intervention actually swing the final outcome ?"

      Did it have to for any action to be taken?

      By that logic, there's no such thing as attempted murder, attempted assault, or conspiracy. Anything attempted is fine as long as it doesn't work out. Rob someone at gunpoint? No problem if you leave empty handed.

      Er...

      C.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Did the Russian intervention actually swing the final outcome ?"

        Did it have to for any action to be taken?

        It is not the action itself, it is the proportionality of the action. So far, whatever has been shown as Russia's doing is a laughable fraction of what USA does to them and the rest of the world.

        It looks like the playground bully throwing a tantrum after the smaller kids have turned the table on him.

        1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

          Re: anonymous coward

          > the smaller kids

          > Russia

          Lol.

          C.

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

            1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

              Re: Voyna i Mor

              Really, it doesn't matter the size of the economy - Russia has the means to cause mischief globally, and it is.

              As it says in the article, whether or not the emails really made people change their minds in the voting booths is up to you. It doesn't matter if the attempt to swing it failed, and that Donald Trump won every vote fair and square.

              If you think Americans should sit back and not even prosecute those responsible for infiltrating and attempting to meddle with a presidential campaign, you have my sympathies. I feel sorry for you.

              I have a feeling people protesting this indictment are scared it may undermine their choice for the White House. It's cowardice. It shouldn't be about Trump v Hillary. it should be about Kremlin v West.

              C.

              1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

                Re: may undermine their choice for the White House

                Last year when half the commentards were calling Trump a corrupt spoiled brat who couldn't pay his bills supporters would leap to his defence. Do the same today and you barely scrape two down votes. Last year when commentards mentioned Russia doing something naughty there would be prompt replies saying "what about ..." Do the same today and the what-abouters are still here.

              2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

                Kremlin v West.

                https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/trump-putin-summit-latest-helsinki-a8447671.html

                “The Kremlin views Trump for what he is – a moron to take advantage of, a novice to be played,” he added.

                “They want him to bulldoze his way through Western security institutions. They want him to create power vacuums that Russia then can fill.”

              3. pɹɐʍoɔ snoɯʎuouɐ

                Re: Voyna i Mor

                "If you think Americans should sit back and not even prosecute those responsible for infiltrating and attempting to meddle with a presidential campaign, you have my sympathies. I feel sorry for you."

                a point that many people are forgetting is that Clinton was legally using a private email server and when she was found out by the authorities, who warned her they were coming to take away the server to examine the emails, deleted thousands of emails off the server, many of which could not be recovered.

                One of the reasons the people in government are to only use government servers for email is so that the contents of the emails are secure form people like, lets say Russian hackers, but also to go some way preventing corruption, which makes you wonder what the content of the deleted emails were?

                Clinton should have been prosecuted for her illegal server, but the only reasons I can think of why she wasn't, was the bloke who decides if she was to be prosecuted or not was running his own private email server. Did Clinton know this? Maybe Clinton's missing emails would show that she knew and he knew that she knew and was therefore the reason for the heads up.

                the 2016 elections was always going to be a clusterfuck... you had two candidates that nobody wanted, another that cooks bacon on an AR15, and another who asked what "an Allepo is", with the last two, trump appeared very electable....

                with future candidates like Jay Zee and Dwayne Johnston, America may have trump for 4 additional years.....

            2. eldakka Silver badge

              Re: anonymous coward

              > They really are not much of a threat. That's why the Germans are so unenthusiastic about spending money on defence. Against what?

              Doesn't matter. It's still a case of the Germans wanting cake, just like many in the EU claim of the British with a soft brexit. NATO is a treaty, and part of that treaty says you will spend at least 2% on defence. End of story.

              Germany are perfectly within their rights to say that they don't perceive any threat to them that justifies spending 2%, but not while staying in NATO as it exists today. Not spending 2% or more on defence is a case of wanting the mutual defence benefits of being in NATO, without paying your share.

              They either need to meet their treaty obligations of 2%, or get the NATO treaty adjusted to a lower minimum spending, or leave NATO.

              1. strum

                Re: anonymous coward

                >NATO is a treaty, and part of that treaty says you will spend at least 2% on defence.

                No it doesn't. End of story.

      2. tom dial Silver badge

        Re: "Did the Russian intervention actually swing the final outcome ?"

        The possibility that the Russian dirty tricks affected the election outcome is relevant because some fraction of the unhappy Democrats never will think otherwise, despite the fact that its probability is vanishingly small and impossible to determine anyhow. The claim will continue to be made at least through the lifetime of people born before 1995 or so.

        It certainly is worth doing something about it, but indicting Russia-based GRU officers and employees seems a pretty anemic something indeed. Unfortunately, beyond strengthening computer network defenses and educating voters (who constitute a vast sea of deep political ignorance and apathy) and campaign and election phishing targets, nothing else is likely to have much effect. Educating voters is, for the most part, a lost cause, since it would require a significant uncompensated effort on their part and most of them are uninterested or they would have learned much of it in secondary school history and civics classes. Hardening the computers, networks, and users is well known to anyone in IT security to be a hard problem in which a single misstep can bring disaster.

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