Russian Media And The American "Alt-Right" Movement Converge On Messaging Over Gen. Mike Flynn’s Resignation

››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

With the resignation of national security adviser Michael Flynn, English language Russian media converged with American "alt-right" messaging on the scandal, blaming widespread conspiracies, including “the military industrial complex,” and “Russophobia paranoia.”

Flynn Resigns Amid Controversy Over Contacts With Russian Ambassador

AP: Flynn Resigns After He “Misled" About His Calls With Russia’s Ambassador To Pence And Administration Officials. President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, resigned on February 13, the Associated Press (AP) reported, after “reports he misled Vice President Mike Pence and other officials about his contacts with Russia." From the February 14 report:

President Donald Trump's embattled national security adviser Michael Flynn resigned following reports he misled Vice President Mike Pence and other officials about his contacts with Russia. His departure upends Trump's senior team after less than a month in office.

In a resignation letter, Flynn said he gave Vice President Mike Pence and others "incomplete information" about his calls with Russia's ambassador to the U.S. The vice president, apparently relying on information from Flynn, initially said the national security adviser had not discussed sanctions with the Russian envoy, though Flynn later conceded the issue may have come up. [The Associated Press, 2/14/17]

Russian Media Push Statements By Russian Officials And US Trump Supporters Calling Flynn’s Resignation “Russophobic Paranoia” And A “US Establishment Coup”

RT Reports Highlight “Alt-Right” Conspiracy Theorist Cernovich And WND Contributor Maloof Calling Flynn Resignation A “US Establishment Coup” And A “Victory For Mainstream Media & Democrats.” Russian state-owned outlet RT published two articles about Flynn’s resignation, one based on an interview with American conspiracy theorist and rape promoter Mike Cernovich and the other based on an interview with Michael Maloof, a former senior security policy analyst for the US Secretary of Defense and a current contributor to the far-right blog WND.com. RT quoted Cernovich, who they identified as a “lawyer and filmmaker,” calling Flynn’s resignation a “coup” and a “huge victory” for Democrats and “establishment Republicans” like White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.” Maloof told RT that “I think this is victory for mainstream media and for the Democrats.” [RT, 2/14/17, 2/14/17]

Sputnik: “Wikileaks Claims Flynn's Resignation Triggered by 'Destabilization Campaign.'” Sputnik reported that Flynn decided “to step down as a result of a destabilization campaign by the media, intelligence community and the Democratic party,” citing WikiLeaks. [Sputnik, 2/14/17]

Moscow Times: Russian Officials “Slammed The Resignation Of White House Security Advisor Michael Flynn As ‘Russophobic Paranoia.’” The Moscow Times  report on Flynn’s resignation focused on quotes from Russian officials like Konstantin Kosachev, the head of Russia’s upper house of parliament, saying, “Even willingness to engage in dialogue with the Russia is perceived by the hawks in Washington as thoughtcrime” and “Either Trump does not have the independence he needs and has been cornered, or Russophobia has struck the new administration from the top down.” From the Moscow Times article:

Top Russian officials have slammed the resignation of White House Security Advisor Michael Flynn as “Russophobic paranoia.”

Konstantin Kosachev, the head of the International Affairs Committee in Federation Council, Russia’s upper house of parliament, said that Flynn’s departure could be a sign that U.S. President Donald Trump was already “backed into a corner.”

"Even willingness to engage in dialogue with the Russia is perceived by the hawks in Washington as thoughtcrime (in the words of immortal George Orwell),” Kosachev wrote on Facebook.

"Either Trump does not have the independence he needs and has been cornered, or Russophobia has struck the new administration from the top down," the senator said.

Alexey Pushkov, a fellow senator and member of the Defense and Security Committee in the Federation Council, also bemoaned Flynn’s departure on Twitter.

Flynn "resigned" not because of his little mistake [with the Russian ambassador], but thanks to an aggressive campaign,” he wrote. "’Russia’s on the way out!’ the press screeches. It’s nothing but paranoia and a witch hunt.” [The Moscow Times, 2/14/17]

“Alt-Right” And Pro-Trump Media Use Similar Messaging As Russian Media And Officials, Call Flynn’s Departure A “Coup”

Infowars: Neoliberals And Neoconservatives “Desperately” Wanted “A Deep State Coup” And Part Of “The Military Industrial Complex's Effort To Undermine, Delegitimize And Sabotage The Trump Administration." InfoWars editor-at-large Paul Joseph Watson claimed “Flynn’s conversation with Kislyak was merely the excuse that establishment neo-cons and neo-libs from both parties were desperately searching for.” [...] “deep state coup” going so far to claim that the real reason was “Flynn represented a direct threat to the military industrial complex that was swept aside by Trump’s victory.” From Infowars:

In reality, Flynn’s conversation with Kislyak was merely the excuse that establishment neo-cons and neo-libs from both parties were desperately searching for. They wanted him gone from the very beginning. This was a deep state coup. [Infowars, 2/14/17]

Mike Cernovich: “The Fake News Media Had Been Going After Flynn For Months.” White nationalist author Mike Cernovich asserted that the “fake news media landed a tactical nuke on America” with Flynn’s resignation, adding, “The fake news media had been going after Flynn for months.” From the February 13 Danger & Play post:

Tonight the fake news media landed a tactical nuke on America. The line has been broken, and the media now knows Trump is far more sensitive to bad press than he seemed to be during the campaign.

Few understand the significance of tonight’s events, as they don’t understand the war being fought. The war isn’t Republicans v. Democrats, as they are two puppets of the same master. The war had always been against the media.

[...]

The fake news media had been going after Flynn for months, and for nonsense. [Danger & Play, 2/13/17]

Gateway Pundit: Flynn Was “The Subject Of A Concerted Attack Over His Contacts With Russia.” The Gateway Pundit claimed that Flynn was “the subject of a concerted attack over his contacts with Russia.” From the February 13 Gateway Pundit report:

Gen. Mike Flynn (Ret.) resigned Monday night as President Donald Trump’s National Security Adviser, according to numerous reports. Flynn has been the subject of a concerted attack over his contacts with Russia and whether he was truthful in explaining those contacts to Vice President Mike Pence. [The Gateway Pundit, 2/13/17]

Posted In
National Security & Foreign Policy
Network/Outlet
Gateway Pundit, Associated Press
Person
Michael Flynn, Mike Cernovich, Donald Trump
Show/Publication
Infowars, Russia Today, Associated Press
Stories/Interests
Trump / Russia
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