A failure to protect our democracy

To the editor:

Robert Mueller concluded his work as special counsel stating: “ … Russian intelligence officers who are part of the Russian military, launched a concerted attack on our political system. …They used sophisticated cybertechniques to hack into computers and networks used by the Clinton campaign. They stole private information and then released that information through fake online identities and through the organization WikiLeaks.

The releases were designed and timed to interfere with our election and to damage a presidential candidate. and at the same time, a private Russian entity engaged in a social media operation, where Russian citizens posed as Americans in order to influence an election.”

Thirteen Russians have been indicted for stealing the identities of American citizens, posing as political activists, and they used the flash points of immigration, religion and race to manipulate a campaign in which those issues were already particularly divisive.

While their attack did not include planes flying into buildings nor bombers bombing a harbor, the attack struck at the essence of the American political system, free and fair elections. If elections are undermined by foreign adversaries, the freedoms and ability that has enabled the country to carry on through wars, depressions, and etc. could be damaged beyond repair.

The Mueller Report is filled not with just allegations but detailed evidence to support its conclusions. The Russian attack has been met with a muted response by the president whose oath of office reads, in part, “will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Underlying the Constitution are free and fair elections that enable the people of the United States to give their consent to those who govern them. The failure to give attention and initiative to protecting elections in the future is a failure of this president to do his basic job of defending the very essence of what has made the American experiment in democracy work.

ROY FORD

Danville

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