Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Western Elections : Russian and Saudi Conspiracies

One new conspiracy theory circulating on the Corbynite left is that Trump is a Russian puppet and, as May is aligned with Trump and so Putin and, at the same time, with Saudi Arabia. That's odd as anybody with any basic knowledge of global power politics knows Russia is very hostile to Saudi Arabia.

Trump is not a 'Kremlin puppet'. The dimwit 'logic' of this starts from the grunt 'we hate May' and so if May is aligned with Trump, then she is aligned with Russia, a clear absurdity as the Conservative government is openly hostile to Russian geopolitical manoeuvres in Eastern Europe and the Caucasus.

Trump is not a Kremlin plant. This is a conspiracy theory to rationalise the fact a demagogic outsider from without the accepted Washington establishment humiliated Republican contenders and then the useless Hillary Clinton as democratic rival. They want revenge. One reason McCain, the loser from 200, is furious about Trump's win.

The Trump campaign team links with Russia are minimal and hardly enough to swing an election. The conspiracy theory suits humiliated Washington elites who can claim Trump is not legitimately elected and was imposed from outside by the USA's main global geopolitical rival in Russia. It's a counter conspiracy narrative.

Putin flirts with suggesting he could indeed have connived to get Trump elected so as to swell suspicions and paranoia and damage US global credibility even further. But the simple truth, if painful to many, is that Trump was elected freely and fairly as a US strong man nationalist and populist.

As regards May, it's true Britain has remained cravenly dependent upon the Saudis for lucrative arms deals and petrodollar investments in the British economy. But as humiliating as this is, not least as May is suppressing a report into Saudi financing of Wahhabism in Britain, it existed under successive Labour government's too.

Corbyn, to his great credit, would appear hostile to the corrupting Saudi special relationship. But he would still face huge PLP opposition to suspending arms deals and certainly might annoy those within Labour who would not want the Saudi report published either in order to retain favour with Riyadh.

One reason is jobs for BAE workers. But it could also be that both Tory and Labour politicians would look very bad. The Brown government suppressed an SFO enquiry into corruption and using taxpayer's money to oil arms deals under previous governments. So if May wins and Corbyn falls, the Saudi report may be conveniently forgotten.

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