by Matthew Vadum
The Russian collusion the Left doesn't want to talk about.
While the media-driven leftist hysteria about President Trump’s non-existent electoral collusion with Russia continues to build, the Left continues to ignore the longstanding collaboration of its biggest star with the Communists who used to rule Russia.
That star, of course, is 76-year-old Bernie Sanders, the so-called democratic socialist U.S. senator from Vermont whom the Hillary Clinton-controlled Democratic National Committee quite literally robbed of the Democrats’ 2016 presidential nomination.
The Trump-Russia electoral collusion conspiracy theory and the phony Russian “piss-gate” dossier compiled on the orders of the Clinton campaign, have always seemed farfetched. Similarly, the claim that “Russia ‘hacked’ the American election –to the extent that it changed the outcome– never made any sense,” Michael Walsh has observed.
This “fever dream” was “cooked up by Sore Loser Hillary and her malignant consigliere, John Podesta … [and] began its demonic life as a way to explain Mrs. [Hillary] Clinton’s astonishment and anger at losing an election all her media buddies told her was in the bag, and for which she felt sure the fix was in.”
Before November 2016 Democrats “never met a communist they didn’t like or a Russian they didn’t want to embrace,” Walsh wrote.
Not surprisingly, Comrade Sanders’ ties to Russia are much more substantial than any ties President Trump may have.
Bernie’s top 2016 presidential campaign strategist Tad Devine is mentioned 16 times in a list of 500 newly disclosed potential exhibits that Special Counsel Robert Mueller may use in former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort’s upcoming trial for failing to register as a foreign agent and related offenses. According to the emails in evidence, at one point Devine was in regular contact with Russian intelligence agents. Devine was a lobbying business partner of Manafort and previously worked for the pro-Kremlin president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych. Devine also previously worked for Sanders in the 1990s and as an aide to Al Gore, John Kerry, and Michael Dukakis on their respective presidential campaigns.
Bernie himself has been around Russians and Soviet-era communists a long time.
After he was elected mayor of Burlington, Vermont, in 1979, for a decade he displayed a Soviet flag in his mayoral office, claiming he did so to honor Yaroslavl, Burlington's sister city in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. In addition, he made Puerto Cabezas in Communist Nicaragua another sister city of Burlington.
Bernie Sanders honeymooned in the USSR in 1988. While there he spewed anti-American propaganda, claiming housing and health care there was “significantly better” than in the U.S., and adding “the cost of both services is much, much, higher in the United States.” While in the Soviet Union, Sanders almost certainly worked with KGB agents, knowingly or unknowingly, as all friendly high-profile foreign visitors did at the time.
Sanders worked as an organizer for the United Packinghouse Workers Union (UPWU) which was investigated for its Soviet Communist ties by the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC).
In 1989 Sanders addressed the national conference of the U.S. Peace Council, a Communist Party USA (CPUSA) front group. The event focused on how to “end the Cold War” and “fund human needs.”
It needs to be pointed out that interacting with the CPUSA was a dangerous thing. During the Cold War, CPUSA members swore an oath "to the Soviet Union, to a 'Soviet America,' and to the 'triumph of Soviet power in the United States," according to bestselling author and Grove City College political science professor Paul Kengor.
As Accuracy in Media has reported, in the 1980s Sanders "collaborated with Soviet and East German 'peace committees'" whose objective was "to stop President Reagan’s deployment of nuclear missiles in Europe,” according to Accuracy In Media (AIM). Indeed, he “openly joined the Soviets’ 'nuclear freeze' campaign to undercut Reagan’s military build-up.”
Bernie also gave aid and comfort to allies of the Soviet Union. He travelled to Soviet-backed Communist Cuba in the 1980s where he enjoyed a friendly meeting with Havana's mayor.
In 1985 he visited Nicaragua to celebrate the sixth anniversary of the seizure of power of Daniel Ortega and his Soviet-backed Marxist-Leninist Sandinista government. Sanders wrote an open letter to the people of Nicaragua attacking the Reagan administration, which he claimed was a puppet of corporate interests, for its anti-Communist activities. “In the long run, I am certain that you will win, and that your heroic revolution against the Somoza dictatorship will be maintained and strengthened,” he said.
When he was stateside again, Sanders sent a letter to the White House saying Ortega was interested in meeting with President Reagan to try to negotiate an end to that nation's civil war. Sanders even invited Ortega to visit Burlington.
As Walsh has noted, left-wingers’ love affair with Russia began a long time ago.
Barack Obama, who let Vladimir Putin invade the Crimea, was the most pro-Russian president of my lifetime.
In 2009 Obama killed President Bush’s missile defense program for the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland. Then he renegotiated the New START nuclear arms agreement, which curbed the U.S. missile defense arsenal while letting the Russians add to theirs. In March 2012 Obama was caught on an open microphone telling then-Russian President Dmitri Medvedev to wait until after the upcoming election when he would be able to make even more concessions on missile defense. As Russia engaged in what one expert called the largest military buildup since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Obama flipped off Mitt Romney during a presidential debate. After Romney on the campaign trail referred to Russia as “without question, our No. 1 geopolitical foe,” Obama mocked him, saying “the 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.”
What has President Trump done about the largely exaggerated Russian menace? A lot more than Obama did.
It is true that President Trump is often accused of going off-message, especially on matters concerning Russia. Although Trump’s rhetoric regarding Russia and Putin is frequently measured and diplomatic, his real-life actions regarding Russia have been tough.
Trump expelled 60 Russian operatives from the U.S. and shut down two consulates. He issued sanctions against several individuals and entities in Russia. He issued four separate statements condemning Russia’s poisoning of British citizens on British soil. He signed off on the sale of lethal aid to Ukraine, approved military strikes against the brutal Assad dictatorship in Syria, and has repeatedly criticized Russia’s energy exports to Eastern Europe.
Yet in today’s topsy-turvy political environment, Donald Trump is smeared as an agent of Putin and Bernie Sanders is absurdly hailed as an American patriot.
Blame Trump Derangement Syndrome.
Photo: Marc Nozell
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