The media frenzy over “Russiagate” seems to get progressively more stupid as desperation takes hold. To sustain the sense of frenzy – which Russiagate cultists call “drip drip drip” – they need new sensational bombshells every day. Except there aren’t any. So the media makes them up.
Case-in-point this breathless piece from the Capitol Hill rag, The Hill, screeching paranoia over the fact that an advisor to candidate Trump’s presidential campaign MET WITH AN ADVISOR TO HUNGARY’S PRIME MINISTER!!!! OMG!!! Drip Drip Drip!!! GET ME MUELLER, STAT!!!
What makes the latest earth-shattering revelation all the more ridiculous is that reading the article it becomes painfully obvious that the author has no clue that Hungary is actually a strategic ally of the United States as a fellow member of the NATO alliance. Thus a meeting between a representative of the prospective President of the United States and a representative of the Prime Minister of one of the United States’ closest allies, Hungary, is portrayed as some kind of smoking gun while in fact it should be considered the most normal thing on earth.
A smooth transition for an incoming occupant of the White House naturally requires that the new president have established contacts among as many friends and allies overseas as possible and is critical to maintaining normal diplomatic relations. This is nothing new.
And Hungary was not only an early NATO ally of the United States after the Berlin Wall fell: it was a partner trusted enough before its NATO membership to host a major US military base in central Europe.
But The Hill’s modern-day Bob Woodward is having none of it! He’s cracked the code! Hence his headline: “Carter Page held high-level meetings with pro-Putin Hungarian government.”
What the article presents as a smoking gun of the Trump campaign’s collusion with foreign powers is obvious to anyone with more than five minutes experience in international relations to be a positive and encouraging development: then-Hungarian Ambassador Réka Szemerkényi was doing her job – and assisting her US partner – by organizing a meeting between Trump campaign representatives and Hungarian government representatives.
But in the twisted minds of the Russiagate cultists, this normal process is manipulated into some sort of secret Putin infiltration of the Trump campaign.
Writing Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban off as simply “pro-Putin” exposes a level of ignorance that is genuinely breathtaking. Even for a journalist. Orban is head of a three-times democratically-elected government in Hungary that has been a consistent and steadfast partner of the US. Before he was attacked by neocons like Anne Applebaum for objecting to the Brussels-mandated invasion of Hungary by Middle East “refugees,” he was considered a solid Atlanticist. Orban has always looked West for his alliances even as he realizes that there is no harm in looking east for business relationships as well.
On a day when we learn that Google will “de-rank” (hide) RT articles presumably because they are to be considered “fake news,” we are treated to a real piece of fake news by an organization that Google happily promotes in its search engine. How well this Orwell thing is working out…
Daniel McAdams is director of the The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity. Reprinted from The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity.