Good morning! I hope you had a great 4th of July, and now that you’re done eating the hot dogs and exploding the firecrackers, can someone please explain to me why several sitting Republican Senators skipped America’s Independence Day to fly to Russia to meet with Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov?
This is bizarre, is it not? I mean, I don’t want to go full conspiracy theorist here, but as Andrea Mitchell points out, it sure is weird that a group of GOP Senators is meeting with Russia’s foreign minister on the same day that the GOP-led Senate Intel committee issued a report endorsing the 2017 intel assessment that the Kremlin tried to tip the 2016 election to Trump over Clinton. No? Also, that they are meeting five months ahead of the midterms, the first major U.S. election since the Russians interfered with our last election. And it’s not like the U.S. has done anything to prevent another major attack.
It’s worth noting, too, that just a week ago, Donald Trump tweeted that he believed Putin when he said he didn’t meddle with the election. And that Trump and Putin are meeting in a couple of weeks. It is concerning, isn’t it?
Look: When it comes to politics, maybe I’m a little alarmist (although, many of you frequently suggests that I am not alarmist enough). I try not to be too conspiratorial, and J. Michael Straczynski — a sci-fi writer (Babylon) — is not exactly known for conspiratorial takes, either. But my friend Amy G. passed this along from his Facebook page, and well …
Okay, so maybe I’m just nuts. Maybe the writer part of my brain is firing on overload. Maybe I’m seeing shadows where there aren’t any. Happens. But for the last week or so the hairs on the back of my neck tied to storytelling have been rising too many times to be ignored. Feels like something significant is about to happen.
You know those moments in movies when your hero says to the rest, “Okay, anybody who’s afraid of getting caught in the crossfire or has too much to lose and wants to get out, now is the time”? The sudden, suspiciously hasty, and not-really-explained departure of a member of the SCOTUS who gave only a few weeks’ notice than the usual several months notice, ending July 13…the sudden and not-really-explained departure of a deputy assistant attorney general at DOJ…the sudden and only barely explained departure of the prosecutor in the Southern District of New York…all spiraling around the middle of July.
Add to this the Republican-only delegation to Moscow from the Senate Appropriations Committee (and isn’t that an odd one to go, the ones who hold the purse strings for the nation) that looked and sounded like a surrender…the sudden and hastily arranged meeting between Trump and Putin scheduled for the same mid-July window…not long after DOJ finally gets the Cohen documents…Trump threatening this week to quit WTO and even more astonishing to leave NATO (and replace them with what, exactly?) and enticing France to leave EU (again, replacing that with what?)…there’s just an awful lot of stuff suddenly coming out of nowhere and lining up in the same mid- to late-July window. It all feels very much time-on-target.
If I were writing this as a script, I’d suggest that these were steps being made either to prepare for one hell of a confrontation or, more likely, something we haven’t seen coming. Trump has been saying since his first day in office he wants to have better and closer relations with Russia, trying to get them back into G7, validating their last election, essentially telling them can have Crimea…if he wants out of NATO and WTO and wants to disable the EU, are we being set up for something new, like a Russian/American financial and military alliance? Is that what Putin sold him on? “You can go down in history forming a new kind of America with your name on it, pal.” We’ve gone over 50 years without a global geopolitical strategic shift so we’re definitely overdue.
Maybe it’s nothing. Maybe I’m wrong. I hope I’m wrong. It’s just that the writer in me looks at the events of the last week or so and there’s a definite Seven Days in May/Manchurian Candidate vibe to the moves that are being played out, suddenly and with so little explanation.
Either way, I suspect that the next three weeks are going to be insane beyond anything we’ve seen yet.
That is a high f*cking bar, but the man might be right.
(Image: Getty Images)