Sunday, 14 May 2017

We Should Investigate Links Between Tories and Putin's Russia

Another strong leader, and another
coalition of chaos.
A while ago, I drew attention to the connections between the kind of right-wing populist policies being pursued by the UKIP/Tory party, with those being pursued by Trump, as well as by other right-wing populists such as Le Pen in France, Wilders in the Netherlands and so on, and with the bonapartist regimes in Turkey and Russia. Since then we have seen Tory Minister Liam Fox, visit the dictator Duterte in the Philippines, and talk about their “shared values.” In that previous post I traced back some of the ideas involved with these right-wing populists, around the claims to be “workers' parties” etc. to the ideas of Strasser in the German Nazi Party, and its development in the ideas of National Bolshevism, a centre of which is now Russia. The connections between Putin's Russia and Trump's campaign in the US are under investigation by the FBI and other agencies. And the link between Putin's regime and others of these right-wing populists are fairly apparent. We need an investigation into Putin's Russia, and the British Tory Party.

James Comey, a Republican, as head of the FBI, was criticised for having sprung an October surprise, by revealing that he was looking at more of Hillary Clinton's e-mails, just a week or so, before last year's Presidential election. It turned out that there was nothing to investigate, and the intervention may have cost Clinton the Presidency. The information about the e-mails came from hacking of the Democrats servers by what the US intelligence services unanimously believe were Russian hackers. The information was released via Wikileaks. At the time, Donald Trump called on the Russians, if they had any more leaked e-mails to publish them.

At this time, Trump thought that Comey was doing a great a job. In the last few weeks, however, with the US state clearly getting concerned at the maverick in the White House, and the role of Putin's Russia in intervening in the US political system, the FBI and other security services began to investigate and to expose the connections between members of Trump's election campaign and Russia. It led to the sacking of Trump's Defence Secretary, General Mike Flynn. But, the investigations have widened and deepened, with Comey asking for more resources to continue the investigation. Now, it appears, Trump has decided that Comey was not great after all, but that he was terrible, and that he was showboating and grandstanding, and so just had to go.

This also seems to be a common approach of the regimes of Trump in the US, and of May in the UK, of trying to remove any possibility of scrutiny of their actions, and reacting to close down any such scrutiny or criticism. It was seen with May's attitude to the requirement for parliamentary scrutiny and oversight over the Brexit Bill, and the howls of anger that were raised by the Tory gutter press against the judiciary for doing its job, and insisting that the government operate within the constitution.

Two strong and stable leaders,
this time failed to create a
coalition of chaos in France.
Attempts by Russia to interfere in the French Presidential Election also appear to have taken place, but without success. Yet, there have been quite clear links between the Front National, and Putin's Russia. And, these international links appear to spread across Europe, and wider in respect of these right-wing populist forces. A common theme for all of them, in line with Putin's own strategic ambitions, has been focussed around the break-up of the EU.

Given the extent of this external intervention in elections by Russia, it would be interesting to know exactly what intervention may have occurred with the Brexit vote, which was the first success that the forces of this right-wing populism achieved. 

Trump, in his election campaign, for example, had close links with Nigel Farage, who himself is another admirer of Putin. Back in 2014, even the Daily Express discussed these links between Farage and Putin's regime. Trump said that his election would be Brexit Plus Plus. And Trump then threw his weight behind Le Pen's campaign in France.

Some of the links were also discussed by The Atlantic magazine. Trump like Farage, like Le Pen, like Wilders and all the other right-wing populists across Europe, and like Putin, is seeking the break-up of the EU, and now they have a powerful ally in that, in the Tory government of May, which has moved quickly on to the ground previously occupied by Farage.

Last year, Labour MP Jon Ashworth asked questions about the links of a major Tory donor to Putin's regime in Russia. The Times has also carried stories about Putin's connections with true blue Tories.

Details of further links between the Tories and Russia were set out by The Australian. Yet, ask anyone in the street today, and you are likely to be told that if anyone is connected to Russia it would be Jeremy Corbyn, because many people still live in that old mindset, whereby Russia is still considered to be some bastion of left-wing ideas and activity, rather than what it is, which is a centre for political reaction, for nationalism as a global ideology, which appears to be a contradiction in terms, and yet nevertheless is what the links between all of these various right-wing populists amounts to.

Even the right-wing Daily Telegraph was led last year, to ask questions about the role of the Kremlin in financing and promoting these right-wing populist forces across Europe.

The evidence for the links between right-wing populists, whether it is Trump's campaign in the US, UKIP and the Tory Party in Britain, Le Pen in France, Wilders in the Netherlands and so on are more than apparent. The US has begun to uncover the extent of those links, and nature of their activity, via the investigations by the FBI, which Trump's actions will only intensify, but so far no similar official investigations by the police or other agencies appear to have been undertaken in Britain. Given the way the Tory gutter press acts like the UKIP/Tory party stormtroopers, we can expect no revelations to come from them, but now is a time, when all those sections of the media that prize liberty should be working to uncover and reveal to the public all of the connections with Putin's Russia to the Tory Party, and the threat it poses to our democracy.

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