The Latest Establishment Conspiracy Theory: Russia Fixed Brexit!

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Brexit - Sputnik International
Just when you thought the anti-Russian conspiracy theories couldn't possibly get any loopier, they just did.

The Kremlin has already been accused of helping to put Donald Trump in the White House — and interfering in elections across the "free world"; now it seems those darned Russkies are to blame for Brexit too!

Putin Ate My Hamster

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson gives a speech during a Chatham House conference in central London on October 23, 2017. - Sputnik International
Boris Moscow Trip: 'Defrosting' Relations Amid 'Blame Russia for Brexit' Claims?

Writing his usual "Putin did it" column for the Observer on October 21, pro-war hack Nick Cohen, argues it would be unrealistic to believe Russia didn't interfere with Brexit, because it's interfered in the electoral processes of other western countries.

"On the rare occasions it bothers to discuss the subject, the British state says 'it can't happen here,' even though 'it' is happening everywhere else," he writes.

There's only one tiny problem with Nick's thesis. There's simply no evidence that "it" is happening everywhere else. In fact, no concrete evidence has yet been produced to show that Russia has interfered with any election anywhere.

France? The head of French Intelligence admitted that a hack of Macron campaign data before this year's presidential election was "so generic and simple it could have been done by anyone."    

Germany? Even the hawkish Washington Post said there was no Russian involvement.

The US? #Russiagate is currently unraveling at a rate of knots, with the latest revelation being that the Clinton campaign and the DNC paid for the research which led to the dossier on alleged links between Trump and the Kremlin. As US commentator Max Blumenthal tweeted:

Which brings us back to Mr Cohen. Like the neocon propagandist that he is, he is taking this fake news of "Russian interference across the democratic world" to promote more fake news, this time about Brexit. In the same article in which he promotes his fact-free conspiracy theory, he accuses RT of inviting "conspiracy theorists" into its studios. You couldn't really make it up, could you? Iraqi WMDs anyone?

Meet Ben the Bomber

It goes without saying that "Russia's free pass to undermine western democracy" was endorsed on social media by the Labour MP for Exeter Ben Bradshaw. If that name rings a bell, it's not surprising. Bradshaw was the man who asserted in Parliament, last December that it was "highly probable" that Russia interfered with Brexit — as well as claiming that Russia had deliberately encouraged refugee flows into Europe to destabilize the EU. He also admitted that he had no evidence for his claims. But what the hell! Who needs evidence to accuse people of things, when you're a neocon member of the British legislature! 

Bradshaw's voting record on foreign policy issues tells us everything we need to know. He was a bellicose supporter of the NATO bombardment of Yugoslavia in 1999, and "consistently voted" for the war on Iraq. He supported the bombing of Libya in 2011 and in 2015 was one of 66 Labour MPs who stuck two fingers up at leader Jeremy Corbyn and voted with David Cameron in support of bombing Syria.

In October 2016 he was also one of 100 Labour MPs who failed to support the party's motion, suspending support for Saudi Arabia's bombing of Yemen.

Now Bomber Ben is gunning for Russia. The man who once sat on the advisory board of the hardcore neocon Henry Jackson Society, is calling for a "full government investigation" into "all aspects of [Russian] subversion." There's a petition being enthusiastically promoted by the pro-war "progressive" crowd. Among New Labour figures who have retweeted it is Alistair Campbell, Blair's former spin doctor — who of course also retweeted Cohen's Observer article.

Why Brits Voted for Brexit

But in their enthusiasm to link Brexit to the Kremlin these virtue-signaling Iraq-war supporting Blairites could be making a big mistake. Britons won't take kindly to the suggestion that they voted for Brexit because of Russian interference. It's deeply insulting to those who did vote to leave the EU. 

The truth is that 52% ignored the advice of Sir Richard Branson, Sir Bob Geldof,  J.K. Rowling, Nick Cohen and Ben Bradshaw — because they were fed up with the status quo and wanted change. Voting Leave was seen — rightly or wrongly — as a good way to punish an out-of-touch political and financial elite who had misgoverned the country for decades. An elite who had feathered their own nests, while  ordinary people had to endure the biggest fall in living standards since the 1920s. With millions facing real economic hardship, there were also concerns over the relatively high levels of immigration, caused by free movement in an enlarged EU, and people fleeing neocon instigated wars and destablization campaigns in north Africa and the Middle East.

If we don't like Brexit and are looking for culprits, then blame Blair, Brown, Cameron and Osborne — and not Vladimir Putin. In any case, the cries of "foreign interference" from the pro-war Remainers ring hollow when you consider that the US President Barack Obama blatantly intervened to try and help the Remain side, and the Remain campaign received £1 million (US1,32m) from four top American banks including Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan.

The US actions shouldn't surprise us, as the EEC/EU was a Washington/CIA-backed project from the start. And of course, the US has toppled democratically elected governments around the world for decades. But let's not talk too much about that shall we as it doesn't quite fit the "Only the Big Bad Russians intervene" narrative, does it?

In contrast to Obama, neither Putin — nor any senior member of the Russian government — publicly warned Brits which way to vote. We simply don't know whether Putin wanted Brexit or Britain to stay in the EU. He may well have been a "shy leaver," but it is just as likely that he wanted Britain to "remain" — out of fears that outside of the EU, the UK would be even more closely tied to the US. It's also perfectly possible that he didn't give a monkeys either way.

The Phantom of the Kremlin

Those who claim that breaking up the EU is the "dream" of the Kremlin, as the unelected peer and composer of hit West End musicals Lord Lloyd Webber recently did, have absolutely no evidence for such an assertion.

The fact is that so-called "Kremlin-propaganda outlets" RT and Sputnik, gave space to both sides in the Brexit debate. Some of the most persuasive left-wing arguments against Brexit were published on this very site, written by John Wight. While one of the most impressive Remainers I saw interviewed on British television was Mike Galsworthy, founder of Scientists4EU, on RT UK.

Furthermore, the "Brexit was a Russian plot" theory doesn't explain why many of the fiercest opponents of the Kremlin, such as Michael Gove, Dan Hannan and Douglas Carswell campaigned energetically for a Leave vote. Do we honestly feel that someone like Michael Gove would support a cause if he thought, or even remotely suspected, it might be Kremlin-backed? Or perhaps the next claim from the Russophobes will be that Gove is in fact a double agent-whose real name is Mikhail Govesky? We can laugh, but in the present climate, where even Pokemon Go is held suspect, you can't rule out anything.  

A New 'Progessive' Witch-Hunt

Sensible Remainers need to be avoid being corralled into joining what is a McCarthyite witchhunt — promoted by the "progressive" wing of the Endless War party in media and in politics, in pursuit of their obsessive anti-Russian agenda. 

The witch-hunt now involves the targeting of Brexit-campaign donor Arron "Money" Banks, who it seems is suspect because (a) he seems to have had more money in one year than he had in the previous one and (b) he has a Russian wife.  

Well, I have a Hungarian wife — so does that mean — if I start funding political campaigns, that I'm an agent for Viktor Orban and the Hungarian government? Is this where we've now got to? 

There's a further important point which needs to be made concerning recent developments. The fact that some people on the "liberal" wing of the Establishment are pushing the line that Brexit came about because of the "interference" of a certain foreign power — and not because of domestic and foreign policy failures — shows they have learnt nothing from the kick up the "Khyber Pass" they got on June 23, 2016. 

Perhaps next time the kick needs to be even harder, for them to finally get the message.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.

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