President Trump's refusal to condemn Russia for allegations of meddling in the 2016 US election while accepting Russian President Vladimir Putin's denial has triggered many on the left along with never-Trump conservatives in a blind rage.
After declaring Trump "treasonous" and calling for a coup, many on the left are now calling Russia's alleged hacking an act of war, with some suggesting it was a modern Pearl Harbor. Aside from the 2,403 Americans who died in Pearl Harbor that just had their deaths casually compared to an alleged cybercrime, sure.
Former Homeland Security & Counterterrorism Adviser to President Bush and CBS News Senior National Security Analyst Frances Townsend is one of those people - tweeting on Tuesday night: "Putin's Attack on the U.S. Is Our Pearl Harbor. It was an Act of War and we should recognize it as such."
Politico drew the same copmparison with their article: "Putin's attack on the US is new Pearl Harbor," while trotting out the "Act of War" language as well.
Members of the House and Senate have been briefed, but remain deadlocked in partisan bickering. Some in the House have spent more time investigating the investigators than they have in trying to hold Russia accountable. Trump’s suggestion to accept Russian investigators into this process adds a new layer to the sideshow. When right of the boom feels like left of the boom, it’s easy to miss the fact that what the Kremlin did—is doing—was, and is, an act of war. -Politico
Rep. Steve Cohen, (D-TN) - the guy who wanted to give disgraced FBI agent Peter Strzok the Purple Heart - told The Hill's Buck Sexton and Krystal Ball that Russian interference was clearly an act of war, and that the U.S. should have hit back with attacks on Russian targets.
It was a foreign interference with our basic Democratic values. The underpinnings of Democratic society is elections, and free elections, and they invaded our country. A cyber attack that made Russian society valueless. They could have gone into Russian banks, Russian government. Our cyber abilities are such that we could have attacked them with a cyber attack that would have crippled Russia. -The Hill
This is how the world goes to shit.— Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) July 17, 2018
Crazy politicians and the people who love them. pic.twitter.com/3rBOF7wbAA
Listen to this guy.— Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) July 17, 2018
Look how utterly sick and twisted he is.
All because Hillary lost.
"A cyber attack that made Russian society valueless." pic.twitter.com/qq2MmxyaST
Meanwhile, as Breitbart's Josh Caplan notes, CNN's Chris Cuomo is stoking the fire:
CNN New Day host Chris Cuomo repeatedly accused Russia of “election hacking” to wage war against the U.S. “The big, ugly white elephant in the room will be the U.S. election hacking,” Cuomo speculated. “We’ve been calling it meddling, but I’m trying to stay away from the word because it’s just way too mild. This is an act of war.”
The CNN host described the Russian hacking allegations as “the truth”: “How does [Donald Trump] raise the act of war of the hacking and different attacks during the U.S. election when Vladimir Putin knows damn well that President Trump doesn’t really believe the truth and doesn’t put a whole lot of stock in the event itself?” -Breitbart
Marketwatch's Rex Nutting suggested that "Russia's ongoing attack on our democracy amounts to an act of war," while criticizing President Trump's meeting with Putin.
Russia’s ongoing attack on our democracy amounts to an act of war. But instead of confronting Russian President Vladimir Putin at a joint press conference in Finland on Monday, Donald Trump praised him. Instead of standing up to Putin, Trump stood by him. By his actions, Trump is violating his oath, in which he “solemnly swore” to not only “faithfully execute” his duties as president and commander in chief of the armed forces, but also to “preserve, protect and defend” the Constitution. -MarketWatch
Not everone's on the warpath...
Business Insider senior editor Josh Barro injected some common sense into the debate, tweeting "People like to throw this term around, "act of war." I don't think they're being very thoughtful about what that means. An act of war justifies military action."
People like to throw this term around, "act of war." I don't think they're being very thoughtful about what that means. An act of war justifies military action. https://t.co/IskmW85LiA— Josh Barro (@jbarro) July 15, 2018
Author Michael Malice offered some perspective:
Reminder that north Korea hacking Sony Pictures was also described as an act of war.— Michael Malice (@michaelmalice) July 17, 2018
Don't underestimate how desperate the corporate press and the government are to get us to war.
As Randoulph Bourne wrote in 1918, "war is essentially the health of the State."
Others questioned the sanity of the MSM and politicians alike for casually throwing around the notion of war:
If you’re really eager for the US to enter a new phase of perpetual war -- because that’s always worked out so well -- you’d publish this piece. If you had a sense of social responsibility and/or sanity, you wouldn’t publish it. Media’s gone off the deep end pic.twitter.com/h0bGxDVZZ9— Michael Tracey (@mtracey) July 18, 2018
A quick message to the DC establishment that wants to send our children into a war with Russia...FUCK OFF! pic.twitter.com/QBzMOfyjf9— Ed ☯️ Humilitatem (@DowdEdward) July 18, 2018
And Washington Examiner chief political correspondent Byron York offers up some suggestions for why President Trump does not accept the Intelligence Community's assessment on Russian election interference:
Twelve theories, some more plausible than others, on why Trump does not accept Intelligence Community verdict on Russian election interference: 1) He really doesn't believe it. 2) He can't admit anything that casts doubt on his victory. 3) He thinks it's an Obama plot.— Byron York (@ByronYork) July 18, 2018
4) He doesn't want to give even an inch to his adversaries. 5) He really wants to improve relations with Russia. 6) He believes Sen. Charles "Six ways from Sunday" Schumer, suspects elements of IC are out to get him.— Byron York (@ByronYork) July 18, 2018
7) He really did collude. 8) He's been a Russian asset since the 1980s. 9) Putin has something on him. 10) He's just messing with the political class. 11) He enjoys media freakout. 12) He was paying attention during the Iraq War.— Byron York (@ByronYork) July 18, 2018
Is every country whose elections the United States meddled in now entitled to retaliate for our "acts of war"?