Trump, like his former National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn, took special joy in calling for prosecuting and even locking up Hillary Clinton, the 2016 presidential candidate. Now Flynn has been indicted himself, but Trump is still in power as we head into the New Year. After a full year in office, Trump has never ceased to lavish praise upon a man who actually does take part in locking up his political opponents and has reportedly had their lives snuffed out. Vladimir Putin has stayed in power for 18 years, and it hasn’t been through a love of democratic elections. It looks like Trump would very much love to head down that same path.
Consider this quote:
“You, [fill in the blank], have turned our country into a source of enrichment for you and your family and your friends.”
It sounds like a quote that could easily be applied to Donald Trump today, but it’s from the most prominent rival and political opponent of Vladimir Putin, Alexei Navalny. The Russian opposition leader drew thousands at a rally on Sunday, even though he was found ineligible to run by election officials due to Trumped up politically motivated charges of embezzlement, most likely created for the sole purpose of disqualifying him.
A European Court of Human Rights ruled that Navalny “was denied the right to a fair trial when he was convicted in 2013.”
“Just try to not let us run in the elections,” he told a crowd of more than 700 supporters invited to gather in a makeshift campaign tent in a park on the outskirts of Moscow. “We will call a strike,” said Navalny.
Navalny led a protest of hundreds of thousands in Russia protesting electoral fraud in 2011.
Now the Kremlin has had to go ahead and stop playing pretend that the election was actually democratic. Russian officials barred Navalny from running in the March 2018 election on Monday.
As a result, Navalny called for a boycott of the election, and now it looks like he may suffer more legal repercussions from the Kremlin. Putin’s spokesman made a veiled threat.
“Calls for boycott ought to be carefully studied to see if they are breaking the law,” said Dmitry Peskov, Putin’s spokesman.
Now the rigged election in Russia will almost certainly go to Putin, as planned, though a young woman, Ksenia Sobchak, will offer an alternative and harmless way to vent frustration for young Russian people dissatisfied with the corruption and poverty in their country. Sobchak is rumored to be President Vladimir Putin’s goddaughter and has often been called, “Russia’s Paris Hilton.”
The corruption is all something Bill Browder, a champion for the Magnitsky Act has seen before. Putin has been relentless in his pursuit of revenge against Browder, recently going off the rails and accusing him of being a “serial killer” who murdered three men linked to an organized crime group and a tax fraud scheme.
Sergei Magnitsky, Browder’s lawyer, had uncovered the $174 million tax fraud scheme by the men Putin now accuses Browder of murdering. Magnistky’s findings led to his wrongful imprisonment, probable torture, and ultimately his death.
The Magnitsky sanctions have come to national prominence as the main topic of conversation at the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting, which Trump’s son, at his father’s request, chalked up to being solely about “adoption.”
Browder called Putin a “thin skinned coward” for barring Navalny from the Russian election.
Looking at what is happening in Russia’s “fake news” elections, it would benefit America to take a long hard sober look at the man in the White House at the turn of the year. Trump has, ever since elected, favored Vladimir Putin, like the fawning puppet that Clinton warned he would be. He demonized her before the election, literally calling her the devil, and threatened to lock her up and prosecute her. He hasn’t called her a “serial killer,” yet, but this is certainly a man who continues to mirror the Russian KGB playbook in insidious ways.
This is a man who has done nothing to protect the 2018 elections from Russian interference.
This is a man who could be a grave threat to democracy in America – a historically unpopular President.
He’s had a year to prove himself, and he has proven himself every bit as unfit as Hillary Clinton warned us he would be. America stands to become more like Putin’s Russia in 2018, unless We the People prevent that from happening.
Revisit Donald Trump from October 2016 in the video below:
Featured image: Screenshot via YouTube