The XX Committee

What the Hunt for a Top Nazi War Criminal Tells Us About Trump’s Russia Problem

Joseph Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda guru, is infamous for his assertion that the bigger the lie, the more effective it is—particularly if you stick to it. It’s not hard to demonstrate that mixing fact and fiction together to spin a narrative, what is properly termed disinformation, can be mightily effective at removing inconvenient facts from public discourse.

With each passing day, President Donald J. Trump’s defense of his rumored Kremlin ties demonstrates this reality, while constituting a mounting exercise in what mental health professionals term projection. That is, rather than admit his own misdeeds, Trump merely passes them on to his accusers. Whereas the president for more than a year insisted there was “NO COLLUSION” with Moscow, of late he has taken to accusing Special Counsel Robert Mueller and those investigating him—particularly the Federal Bureau of Investigation—of being the “real colluders,” as O. J. Simpson might put it.

In this telling, which the White House and its media minions push hard daily, Trump is the innocent victim of a far-reaching conspiracy conjured up by Democrats to keep him from winning the Oval Office in 2016. This plot allegedly consisted of invented evidence designed to malign the reality TV star-turned Republican nominee.

Facts are immaterial to this administration, however, and the painful truth understood by anyone versed in the ways of the Kremlin, particularly under the leadership of President Vladimir Putin, is that the entire Trump campaign in 2016 was an extended exercise in collusion with Russia. While the details of quid pro quos are unknown to the public, that Trump’s run for the White House was chockablock with efforts to enlist Kremlin help needs to be explained.

Read the rest at The Observer …

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