consortiumnews | At the final presidential debate, Hillary Clinton was asked about her dream for “open borders” as disclosed in one of her paid speeches to financial special interests. Instead of giving a thorough answer, she pivoted into an attack on Russian “espionage” for allegedly giving the speech to Wikileaks to benefit Donald Trump’s campaign.
“This has come from the highest levels of the Russian government, clearly from Putin himself, in an effort, as 17 of our intelligence agencies have confirmed, to influence our election,” she charged. “Will Donald Trump admit and condemn that the Russians are doing this and make it clear that he will not have the help of [Vladimir] Putin in this election?”
Trump responded by saying Clinton had “no idea” if it was Russia, China or anyone else who had hacked into the account. Indeed, some former U.S. intelligence officials say the emails may have been leaked, rather than hacked. And the U.S. intelligence community has provided no public evidence to back up Clinton’s claim.
James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence (which apparently represented Clinton’s “17 agencies”), said the “hack” was “consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts. … however, we are not now in a position to attribute this activity to the Russian Government.”
By contrast, Trump espoused the benefits of cooperation with Moscow. “I don’t know Putin,” Trump said “He said nice things about me. If we got along well, that would be good. If Russia and the United States got along well and went after ISIS, that would be good. [Putin] has no respect for [Clinton].”
“Well, that’s because [Putin would] rather have a puppet as president,” Clinton shot back.
“You’re the puppet,” Trump interjected.
“You are willing to spout the Putin line,” Clinton retorted, “sign up for his wish list, break up NATO, do whatever he wants to do, and that you continue to get help from him because he has a very clear favorite in this race.”
Yet, if Russia prefers Trump it’s probably because he wants dialogue with Moscow, while Clinton has called Putin “Hitler,” made bellicose statement towards the country and dismissed areas of possible cooperation.