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The United States is under attack.

It is not an attack with bombs or airplanes. No one has been killed and property has not been damaged. It is, however, an attack on the most valuable thing that we have, something over a million people have gladly given their lives in the past to protect – our democracy.

This is a highly coordinated and sustained attack by a foreign power. It is still ongoing, and appears to have gradually grown more sophisticated over a period of years. There is reason to believe that will continue unless it is stopped.

Denial of this attack and the perpetrators who we certainly know are carrying it out, Vladimir Putin’s Russia, is hindering our response to this attack and making our democracy more vulnerable. That this effort to thwart our defenses and distract the public’s attention away from the threat comes from the very top of our leadership can only be described as treason.

The Founding Fathers very very careful and deliberate.

The Constitution of the United States is very specific. The founders did not want treason to be used as broadly as it had in England, as it was the most effective way to shut down criticism of the government. A free society demands a definition of treason which is very specific and only applies to particularly heinous and obvious acts. The precise text is found in Article III Section 3:

Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.

This is the only crime mentioned in the Constitution. It specifies levying war against the United States or providing “aid and comfort” to the enemy who is at war as the only definition of treason. It is a high standard all around.

The source of all chaos.

There is no question that Russia has been involved in a sustained attack on the US electoral system. For an update on what is known to the public, this excellent website is keeping track of what has been released so far. While there is no evidence that voting itself has been affected, it is not for a lack of trying. The debate that leads up to elections has certainly been affected, and we have learned that the Democratic Party’s entire playbook for 2016 was stolen.

This is more significant than the information that was taken in the Watergate burglary.

The Senate Intelligence Committee has concluded that all of this is indeed accurate and that more needs to be done to protect our elections. This is not a partisan issue. The facts are well established and accepted at this point: Russia interfered in the 2016 election for the purpose of helping Trump, and continues to interfere where they can.

In the face of this, President Trump has repeatedly denied that the election was interfered with. He has blocked attempts to secure the next election in November. Most recently, he met with Putin and accepted on the face of it Putin’s denial that this interference occurred.

This is very much giving aid and comfort to the enemy at a time when the nation is under attack. It is not incompetence, in that it is a consistent and deliberate series of actions. The process of responding to the attacks on the United States and its electoral system have been diminished by the actions of the President and have been discredited by his words alongside the perpetrator of these attacks.

This meets the Constitutional definition of treason. The President needs to be removed from office as soon as possible for the purpose of having an executive in charge who is willing and able to meet the challenges posed by sustained attacks on the core of the American system.

17 thoughts on “Treason

  1. Oh please… As you know and have documented, the US political process and the national debate that underpins it is regularly influenced by dozens of nations, many of whose core interests would be unrecognizable from a US perspective, if honestly presented. Outright purchase of such influence is welcome – in think tanks, media, charitable foundations of prominent politicians. Trump’s influence was purchased. Clinton’s as well. The Bush family’s. The instances are uncountable, but the ####s given by the electorate are few.

    The hysteria surrounding this topic has displaced nearly all substantive discussion of the genuine flaws of the Trump administration. The reliance on national security paranoia, and its bipartisan legitimization by both supporters and opponents of the current Republican government, serves as an *accelerant* in our slow transition to proto-fascism.

    By encouraging this meta-pattern of thought, you are handing legitimacy to future totalitarian statists. Thanks.

  2. I also think this focus on Russia is a mistake. American democracy is certainly under attack: From the hard right, from white supremacists, and from gangsters like Trump and his circle. Trump may be in the pocket of Putin, but they see eye to eye because they’re both gangsters. They want to undo institutions and install a kleptocracy in the US like it is in Russia.

    What’s the difference? If the American public rally behind the idea that Russia is once again the enemy this doesn’t lead to good place. It leads to authoritarian support for the next president, a new cold war that could turn very dangerous, and it gives America an excuse not to face the present but linger in ideologies of the past.

    By all means be up in arms and find ways to replace this president, but do it for the right reasons: Do it to restore democracy and the institutions. To end his transparent corruption. Because he’s an insane man-child. These are good enough reasons. I fear if the US bands together against Trump for a national defense kind of reason it’ll be a bargain with the devil.

  3. Dear Eric,

    My concern is that there are too many GOP in the US Congress who are complicit in the US president’s aiding and abetting in Russia’s attack operation in 2016 US elections’ presidential infrastructure.

    As per a 7/18 NYT breaking news report, President Trump had hard evidence that Russian GRU military intelligence operators did indeed conduct an operation into US politics to help President Trump win in 2016 as early as Jan 6, 2017.

    Since President Trump publicly conspired with Russia as in July 27, 2016, to win the presidency, he can’t exactly admit to their culpability.

    I have no doubt that President Trump who acts, talks, and looks like a Russian asset, has taken actions that fits the definition of a traitor. This is not hyperbole, it is an understatement.

    Hugs, Gronda

  4. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    ‘This is a highly coordinated and sustained attack by a foreign power. It is still ongoing, and appears to have gradually grown more sophisticated over a period of years. There is reason to believe that will continue unless it is stopped.’
    … who will stop this? America patriots … where are you?

  5. The dispersal, often targeted dispersal, of false information was, and is, a major method used by the Russians. But other individuals, most of them Americans, were (and continue) to play the same game of spreading inflammatory misinformation, wild conspiracy theories, scary and vicious gossip….It’s good that the investigation into Russian meddling is revealing the corruption of the political process.

  6. if a president is impeached for treason (good luck getting the republicans to go for that) his VP and entire cabinet are removed from office and the congress appoints a president pro tem until an election can be held.

  7. Erik, good post. The question that has never been responded to by the President or his sycophants is why has he denied the Russian meddling dating back to when he was briefed in January 2017, only occasionally saying they did, before later saying they did not? Just this week, the man has been all over the place on this issue. Why?

    There are only two scenarios – he either does not want to believe this to be true as he has a long business relationship with Russia and is an unwitting participant in Russian meddling. Or, he has known all along as he has a pay for play scheme where he is enriching himself to allow Russia to influence our politics.

    This is why the Mueller investigation is critical. The answer lies between one of those two answers. At the very minimum, Trump is guilty of obstruction of justice and is an unwitting participant. After this week’s events, I am 100% convinced that Trump is guilty of far more. To be fair, I was about 98% there beforehand.


  8. Trump is interested in only one thing, money. I believe the Russians have been funding him for some time. That would come at a cost. The cost currently is the denial that the elections were interfered with despite proofs provided via the Mueller enquiry.
    Since Trump shows no interest in protecting his country from interference from a foreign and unfriendly power I’d say he’s committed treason. He should be removed from office now an safeguards put in place to safeguard the next elections.

  9. Reblogged this on Opher's World and commented:
    Trump disrupting Nato, deliberately destabilising governments in Germany and Britain, attacking the London Lord Mayor and cosying up to Putin and Kim Yong Un – is there something more sinister to it?

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