Perception is Reality

Joyce Oscar

As the adage goes “be careful of the company you keep.” The Washington Times is reporting President Trump’s former campaign adviser, Roger Stone admitted to swapping messages last year with “Guccifer 2.0,” a pseudonymous entity tied to the hack of the Democrat National Committee.

Stone shared the three private exchanges from his own account and said they were innocuous. The self-described Romanian hacktivist claimed last summer to have compromised the DNC, not the Russians as many in the intelligence community indicated. Guccifer 2.0 went on to say it supplied Wikileaks with a cache of documents. Stones says his contact with Guccifer 2.0 happened after the release of the DNC documents.

However, U.S. intelligence authorities now believe Guccifer 2.0 to be a persona used by Russian state actors to send out information hacked from the DNC.

The Trump Administration has repeatedly denied having interactions with the Russian government before the election, calling it a “witch hunt”. An investigation of Trump’s server found no evidence of Russian collusion. Still, the FBI is investigating, along with the House and Senate intelligence committees.

Stone is a controversial political strategist. He has been accused in the past of promoting false information and conspiracy theories. Stone left the campaign in August of 2015 but remained a Trump confidante. The Washington Post reporting last year that Stone was organizing Trump supporters as a force of intimidation.

Paul Manafort was Stone’s lobbing partner. Manafort went on to become Trump’s second campaign manager during last year’s presidential race. Manafort resigned under a cloud of suspicion for taking millions of dollars from a pro Putin party in the Ukraine.

To have an adviser so high up in your organization admitting to contact with possible Russian hackers is not good especially with ongoing probes of possible Russian connections to President Trump. It certainly fans the flames of suspicion and doubt. President Trump’s critics will undoubtedly use this information claiming its proof that his administration is in collusion with these bad actors. With so many suspicious associates who can blame anyone for wondering about President Trump’s possible connections to Russia.

I’m Joyce Oscar

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