From Russia with Love (Trump vs. the Media)

One person, acting alone, could be explained as someone taking personal initiative. Two people very close to Donald Trump and doing the same thing is harder to explain as a fluke. It smells perfectly deliberate and underscores the Democrats’ accusation about the defeat of Hillary Clinton: that the Republicans agreed to and sought Russian espionage during the presidential campaign.

The Washington Post, one of the publications which Trump described as the “true opposition,” just struck a direct blow to the new leader in the White House, revealing that his current attorney general, Jeff Sessions, lied about his contact with the Russians before the election. As the newspaper summarized it, “Jeff Sessions has a big problem. And that’s just the beginning.”

Trump, who is a great communicator and an egomaniac driven by his pride, was not slow in confirming his confidence in the attorney general. Trump comes to this situation after losing Michael Flynn, his national security advisor, as a result of the same thing that Sessions was accused of; Sessions who, in addition, is an admitted racist.

The revelation that Sessions, like Flynn, met with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and concealed these meetings before the Senate during confirmation hearings, again strikes at the unprotected flank of the American president.

The president had taken a step forward by giving a speech in Congress in which he exhibited, skill and boastfulness in presenting a program conceived from the crudest capitalism. The markets jumped with joy and Wall Street broke records.

But politically the path does not seem as clear for the tycoon.

On the one hand, journalists have found through their investigative teams a vein that goes to the heart of Trump’s cabinet and to which the White House doesn’t have much of a response. Such is the paranoia in the U.S. government. Due to leaks, the White House is reviewing the phones of its employees, trying to find out how information is leaking to reporters and TV networks like CNN, whom Trump has called “Clinton Network News,” something that sounds familiar in these parts (remember “TN,” totally negative?).

Another more profound issue hovering all over this is that a part of the U.S. intelligence community doesn’t seem to communicate with Trump and keeps feeding information to media investigation teams.

The New York Times, in yesterday’s edition, affirmed that Obama had ordered the preservation of information about the Trump campaign’s relations with Putin and the Russian government for fear that after winning the election, the tycoon could destroy it.

The issue is that Flynn, in addition to lying in general, lied to Vice President Mike Pence in particular. As for Sessions, who insists on denying the interviews, the Democrats have demanded his resignation and Republican lawmakers have withdrawn their support.

Russian interference in the American election is increasingly being proven, confirming accusations that Trump attributed to journalistic imagination. If that’s the case, the interference is serious, but Americans lying about it is even worse. Nixon, another Republican who stuck his nose into the Democratic Party’s election process, an episode remembered as Watergate, had to resign for lying.

The Washington Post was his executioner.

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