Russia,  Trump

Let’s review

· Donald Trump has selected Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson, who received Russia’s Order of Friendship from Vladimir Putin after signing deals with the state-owned Russian oil company Rosneft, to be the next secretary of state. However he would need to be confirmed by the Senate, and that is not assured.

· Trump’s selection for national security adviser, Michael Flynn, attended a gala dinner in Moscow last year honoring the Russian TV propaganda outlet RT. He sat at the same table with Vladimir Putin and 2016 Green party presidential candidate Jill Stein.

· Trump’s selection for deputy national security adviser, K.T. McFarland, wrote in 2013 that Vladimir Putin deserved the Nobel Peace Prize for preventing the US from undertaking air strikes against the Assad regime in Syria after Putin’s ally killed more than 1,400 civilians in a chemical attack on the Damascus suburb of Ghouta.

· The CIA has concluded that the Russian government hacked Democratic party computers with the goal of helping Donald Trump win the election. Although Trump disputes the conclusion, there appears to be no question that Russia hacked computers of the Democratic National Committee and turned over emails to Wikileaks.

There is also evidence that entities connected to the Russian government were bankrolling “troll farms” that spread fake news about [Hillary] Clinton.

On the other hand, then-secretary of state Hillary Clinton gave a reset button to Russia’s foreign minister in 2009, so none of the above matters.