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CBS’ ‘Face The Nation’ Downplays Henry Kissinger’s Doubts That Russia Sought To Elect Trump

Online, CBS News has provided the full 18 minute taped interview with former Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, six minutes of which were broadcast on the December 18 Face the Nation.  The full interview begins with moderator, John Dickerson’s question on Dr. Kissinger’s take on the presumed hacking of the US election. Kissinger’s answer, which was not included in the broadcast, casts doubt on the narrative that the Russians intervened to help Donald Trump win. Here is the transcript:

John Dickerson: “Dr. Kissinger, there are allegations that Russia attempted to get involved in the US election. What do you make of these allegations?”

Dr. Kissinger: “I can’t quite understand what their purpose would be because in all the polls Hillary was far ahead, and they could not have had information on the polls that others didn’t have.  And then to antagonize the president-to-be by getting into an open support of the opponent doesn’t make any sense to me.  They were hacking, but the use they allegedly made of this hacking eludes me.”

Dickerson did not press Dr. Kissinger to speculate further on Russia’s intended use of the hacks, but an answer is up front in the ballyhood leaks from the US intelligence community, which state that Russia’s goal was “to show corruption in American politics.” Russia’s intent was not to elect Donald Trump but to embarrass and weaken the inevitable President-elect Clinton. In fact, the election of “outsider” Trump muddles Russia’s attack on the US political system. Trump’s victory against the entire US political establishment serves as an unwelcome affirmation of American democracy to a Russian nation whose political leaders are chosen by the Kremlin in faux elections.

Dr. Kissinger’s interview served as a call to a skeptical US political establishment to rethink a President Trump “who has the possibility of going down in history as a very considerable President.”