By Jason Michael

President Obama has lashed out against Putin for the alleged Russian involvement in the series of cyber-hacks against Hillary Clinton. Without any credible evidence supporting the White House’s claims there has to be more to this than meets the eye.

Outgoing US president Barack Obama is doing everything in his power to “poison the well” before the 20 January inauguration of president-elect Donald Trump. Without a single shred of verifiable evidence the White House has “retaliated” against Putin’s Russia for its alleged involvement in the hacking of DNC email accounts during the recent presidential election by expelling 35 Russian diplomats suspected of spying and promising a whole raft of sanctions against Russia. Most analysts, including former US diplomat and foreign policy advisor Jim Jatras, are of the opinion that this hostile move is designed to widen the US-Russian divide before Trump takes office.

WikiLeaks only last night tweeted that the latest revision of the Joint Analysis Report – the NCCIC and FBI “hacking report” – had redacted any mention of the non-profit leak website from its disclaimer, a clear indication of a governmental agency whitewash intended to point the finger at Russia alone. Leaving aside the fact the United States has a long historical record of overt and covert interference in the democratic elections of other countries; leading in many cases to US-sponsored military dictatorships and grotesque human rights violations, these accusations come at a time when tensions between the US and Russia are at their highest point since the Cold War.

As the US and its allies continue to support al-Qaeda militants and their affiliates in Syria the arrival of Russia’s northern fleet into the Eastern Mediterranean has turned the tide of the conflict, putting US strategic interests in the region on the back foot. So far nothing has been found linking the assassination of the Russian ambassador to Turkey, Andrey Karlov, to the Turkish government – a US ally in the Syrian civil war – despite the assassin’s close association with Erdoğan. Yet this, together with Obama’s unsubstantiated claims yesterday, is only adding to the pressure cooker of new Cold War conditions that is US-Russian relations.

These expulsions and sanctions against Russia have to be understood against the backdrop of the Syrian conflict, a debacle all sides have obscured through their respective media outlets. As is the case with all US intervention in the Middle East, Syria is an oil war – and both the United States and Russia are vying for control of the pipelines. Given the involvement of multiple government agencies behind the scenes of Obama’s position it is most likely the case that this is a civil service power play in Washington to fortify long-term strategic objectives before an unpredictable Trump – known for his admiration for Putin and Russia – takes office and ruins their fun.

‘Any further hostile actions from US will trigger Moscow reaction’
– Russian Foreign Ministry

Author: Jason Michael (@Jeggit)

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