In probably the most “Captain Obvious” statement – ever – former US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper is drawing mainstream attention to the pattern of Putin political opponent deaths.
Of course, Russia will always claim ‘prove it’. Of course, Russia will always demand ‘show us the evidence’. Of course, Russia will deny, deny, deny. Of course, Russia will throw in a Red Herring and distract the conversation. Of course, Russia will blameshift or gaslight and point to another coincidence. Of course, Russia will not accept responsibility.
What this does, however, is establish a public, outright, overt, and very obvious statement by a reputable former US official which can forever be used by anyone in the world to demonstrate – officially – that it is not just the Russian people who see this strange coincidence of people mysteriously dying if they oppose Vladimir Putin. Either by way of a mysterious assassin(s), a polonium pellet, an umbrella poison, or any of a number of demonstrated signature methods for KGB/FSB assassinations.
This is, of course, only one indication of a truly sick government in Russia. Putin and his government do not abide by the law or play by the rules. Their standard of behavior is that of a playground bully. They invade countries, they encroach on their air space and sovereign waters, they intimidate, veto sanctions and actions against them and their allies with impunity, they use lawfare against other nations, they kidnap foreign nationals, their government is corrupt at all levels. This has been demonstrated countless times, and the world must still respond. Caution must be exercised, however, for each time they are confronted they utter the phrase “we have nukes”, just like a juvenile bully.
Mr. Putin, the gauntlet has been thrown. Mr. Sergey Lavrov, Maria Zakharova or Dmitry Peskov, please deny quickly, so we know this statement is true.
Clapper notes ‘curious pattern’ of Russian deaths
BY OLIVIA BEAVERS – 05/14/17 05:09 PM EDT
Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said there is a “curious pattern” of deaths of opponents of Russian President Vladimir Putin who have questioned or challenged his role.
“Well, this obviously has been a curious pattern,” Clapper told host Jake Tapper Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
Clapper said intelligence officials have not been able to gather enough evidence to prove the claim by many critics that Putin has opponents killed.
“We have had difficulty, though, in actually generating an evidentiary trail that could equate convincingly and compellingly in a court of law a direct connection between certain figures that have been eliminated who apparently ran afoul of Putin,” he added.
Clapper said it is an “interesting pattern. I will put it that way.”
The wife of one of Putin’s most prominent critics, activist and journalist Vladimir Kara-Murza, said her husband had been poisoned again, after experiencing kidney failure and being put in a medically induced coma in February. She reportedly said the doctors diagnosed him with an “acute poisoning by an unidentified substance.”
President Trump, during an interview in early February with then-Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly, defended Putin and objected to him being called “a killer.”
“We have a lot of killers,” Trump said at the time. “You think our country is so innocent?”
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and other lawmakers shot back at Trump for comparing the U.S. to an authoritarian regime.
Clapper’s comments come amid ongoing investigations into whether Russia interfered in the 2016 election.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson recently said U.S. relations with Russia are at an all-time low.