A federal grand jury has indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities for alleged illegal interference in the 2016 presidential elections, during which they strongly supported the candidacy of Donald Trump, special counsel Robert Mueller’s office said Friday.
They found their Russians! The only problem here is that these kinds of tactics are well-known and long used. Reading through the article it doesn’t sound very compelling. Of course they can’t indict them for interfering with the election because that’s not actually illegal. You can try, all you want, to persuade someone, through truth or lie, to vote for the candidate of your choice. In no small sense that’s all campaigns are. What they are charged with is: Conspiracy to commit wire fraud, bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. All things they did as part of their efforts, but they aren’t charged for the effort itself.
I don’t know if this will put an end to what has been a ridiculous misuse of taxpayer money but I hope it does. I say it’s a waste because the target was Trump not real Russian “hacking” of the election. What they found was something that happens with every single election. What they found was the Russians doing something we do in other countries. I don’t know if we create false identities like the Russians did, or if the CIA commits bank fraud to pull it off, I can’t say that part, but they have admitted to doing it.
The dates in question make it appear that they began their quest against Hillary long before Trump announced his candidacy. The group, basically a trolling group, formed in 2013. The interesting thing is that they registered as a corporation with the Russian government. This was done to appear legitimate. They stole identities, also to pose as legitimate people. That leads us to what I think is a very telling part of the indictment, and what so far has been an extremely under-reported part. To collusion with the Trump campaign.
“Some Defendants, posing at U.S. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities,” the indictment claims.” Basically this says that while some members of this trolling group met with members of the Trump campaign those members were not aware of their affiliation with Russia. They were duped according to the conclusion of the investigation.