Treason is a serious accusation. Donald Trump throws it around like a Frisbee, accusing Barack Obama of treason for no good and defensible reason. And we all know that when Trump accuses someone of something, it’s almost certainly because he’s guilty of it himself. It’s called projection. Usually, I respond to his kind of projection by posting the relevant “I know you are, but what am I?” clip from Pee Wee Herman’s Big Adventure, but I’m not going to do that tonight. This isn’t the time for that.

You can do one of two things to earn a conviction for treason, according to the Constitution. One is to “levy war” against the United States. The other is to give “aid and comfort” to an enemy of the United States while they are making war against us.

Trump has broken the second protocol.

The short version of Trump’s actual treason against the United States: Starting in 2019, a Russian intelligence unit offered, and paid out, bounties to members of Afghan militias who killed American soldiers. US intelligence agencies have known of this since at least March 2020. Trump was specifically briefed on the actions, and has chosen to do nothing in response. Nothing. According to the New York Times:

Officials developed a menu of potential options — starting with making a diplomatic complaint to Moscow and a demand that it stop, along with an escalating series of sanctions and other possible responses, but the White House has yet to authorize any step, the [anonymous White House] officials said.

The Times went on to write:

Any involvement with the Taliban that resulted in the deaths of American troops would also be a huge escalation of Russia’s so-called hybrid war against the United States, a strategy of destabilizing adversaries through a combination of such tactics as cyberattacks, the spread of fake news and covert and deniable military operations.

Yet Trump did nothing whatsoever to respond to the Russian offensive against US soldiers.


He has not revealed it to the American public (did he think we would never learn about it?). And, less than three weeks ago, Trump threatened to upend the G7 economic summit unless Russia, and particularly Vladimir Putin, was invited.

Not only has he kept quiet about it, and done nothing to retaliate against Putin and Russia, he continues to promote Russian interests — Putin’s interests — above our own.

The actual New York Times article is here, but if you can’t get through the paywall, you can read a shortened version of the story here. You can read what appears to be a well-summarized version here.

According to Times reporter Michael Schwirtz, the same Russian intelligence unit is responsible for the attempted poisoning of former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal in Britain, and an attempted coup against the lawful government of Montenegro.

The response, as you can imagine, has been fierce. Politico reporter Eric Geller wants to know why Trump isn’t stopping Russia from actively working to have US soldiers killed. Good question.

Former Vice Presidential candidate Tim Kaine (D-Not a Traitor) sums it up:

The Palmer Report predicts flatly that Trump will go to prison for this:

Another user calls it treason, and this user is correct:

Former Ambassador Michael McFaul notes that the one constant in Trump’s chaotic foreign policy is a consistent fawning over Putin:

Obviously the House cannot move to impeach Trump until this story is confirmed and these anonymous sources fight their way out of the Trump death swamp and actually testify before the House Intelligence Committee. And, frankly, why should the House impeach him again? There’s no reason to believe that this impeachment vote will go any differently than the last one. 52 of 53 GOP senators ignored all of the evidence and voted to acquit on both sets of charges filed against Trump. One, Mitt Romney, voted to convict on one of the two charges. Looked at by charges, the GOP majority voted 105-1 to acquit Trump of heinous charges of malfeasance, election fraud, and obstruction of justice. They will almost certainly do it again. Why? Because they support him in every single horrendous, evil, criminal, murderous, and treasonous act he does.

Hollywood showrunner Mikko Alanne agrees:

Even if Russia is plainly engaged in an undeclared war against the United States:

As intelligence analyst Eric Garland writes in the above Twitter thread:

This news makes it hard to imagine how Trump isn’t simply a traitor.

Traitors go to prison for the rest of their lives. Or they can be executed.

There is no doubt in my mind that Trump has committed treason against the United States. No doubt. I realize that nothing the Democrats can do will shake him uot of office, as should happen — the Republicans wouldn’t convict Trump no matter what heinous act he pulled off. So, the only thing that remains is to have a federal prosecution ready to go the moment an honest Attorney General takes the reins in January 2021.

This isn’t something that should happen. It’s something that has to happen. Otherwise there is no rule of law anymore.


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  1. A friend mentioned this in an E-mail earlier tonight and I scanned the majors for mention and saw nothing…..thanks for the links.

    I’m sure Pelosi will stick with her stance on impeaching Billy Ewok, that we will correct the wrong on November, and she’s right….if this becomes an issue, which it almost HAS to, it will end the reign of terror that is the current cabal in November.

    • This is New York Times bombshell. Are you sure it’s not on CNN, MSNBC, nada? I don’t know because I’ve been buried in writing a story for a couple of hours.

      • What I’m seeing are truncated versions (like the Post link) and rewritten versions (like the Hill link). It’s almost midnight here; I’ve got MSNBC on to see if Maddow said anything about it during her 9pm broadcast. I bet there will be more stories up tomorrow.

        • Keep in mind it’s the weekend. Friday night/Saturday morning is a convenient time for a story to break, only this is a story that won’t be contained and won’t go away. I think it will explode over the next week. My best friend had the same reaction when I told her last night: “Why am I only seeing coronavirus stories on the news?” (speaking of something else that’s exploding, thanks to Trump).

          Also her other response was to wail “Why does the military all love and support Trump?” Does anyone have any recent numbers on that because the latest poll I could find was late last year and it found he was underwater with active-duty personnel by several points, with almost double the number having a “very unfavorable” view of him than a “very favorable” view. His total approval was 42%. I wonder if it’s lower now. I suspect once this news hits it will plunge.

          • I can’t imagine this does anything except damage him with military voters. And the Lincoln Project absolutely creamed him with an ad on this.

    • Pull up YouTube, find the Rachel Maddow show, 6/26/20–she talked about it last night. Or if you have cable, go to MSNBC on Demand, click on her show below the screen, hit view for last night’s show and there it is.

  2. These are the saddest times for this country in the last 150 years. Every year since Reconstruction this has been building to the events of this year. The Dems in the House should be screaming and having hearings on this till September and then refer the matter to DOJ. I know, but force Barr to poo poo it away. The Senate Dems should make as much noise as possible till they take control of the Senate.

  3. This is likely to be part of the right-wing defense, courtesy of RT (Russia Today). “This assessment is “said to be based at least in part on interrogations of captured Afghan militants and criminals,” who are totally trustworthy and would not at all ever say anything to try and avoid torture in Afghan prisons, globally known as bastions of human rights and democracy.

    If you can’t trust anonymous intelligence officials, after all, who can you trust? It’s not as if the US “intelligence community” had accused Russia of “hacking our democracy” based on a dodgy dossier written by a British spy and paid for by Hillary Clinton’s campaign, in order to get the FBI to spy on President Donald Trump’s campaign before and after the 2016 election, right? All based on “assessments” and beliefs, no less! We should totally trust them when they talk about rogue spy operations – in Russia, obviously, what did you think I was suggesting?

    Besides, it’s not as if the New York Times – that bastion of truth-telling that earned numerous Pulitzers for ‘Russiagate’ coverage – could ever print something that wasn’t thoroughly vetted and properly sourced, right? I mean, the story has four – four – bylines, and the newsroom did not revolt the way they had over the recent op-ed by Senator Tom Cotton, so it must be unimpeachably true! ”

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  5. This is part of a pattern of conduct by Putin/Russia. Trump’s eagerness to withdraw from Syria and leave the Russian’s unchecked to start slaughtering allies we’d worked with to shit-hammer ISIS back into a still dangerous but small and weakened entity had a second component. They had proxy troops encroaching on our forces and firing close enough to directly threaten them. And Trump, no doubt at Putin’s direction pulled the plug and dealt a withering blow to our future ability to partner with Muslim forces in the middle east.

    However, this shit goes way back. Remember Manafort? While under contract to one of Putin’s most important oligarch operative (Oleg Derepaska or ODP) he was spending tons of time in Ukraine working with the Party of Regions to maintain Russian influence in Ukraine & more importantly derail that country from the long process of becoming part of NATO engineered a riot at a specific time and place – which enveloped buses filled with NATO troops including numerous U.S.sailors and jarheads that was headed to important planning meetings for a joint military exercise. Fortunately the attacks on the buses only caused injuries to our troops and their were no deaths. Not that Manafort would have given a flying fuck had any of our troops been killed. Still, this traitorous act had the desired effect. The planning meetings were shelved, as was the joint exercises themselves and along with it any chance of Ukraine continuing the process of one day becoming part of NATO which Putin has always been dead set against.

    I wonder how much more shit like this has happened that’s classified to this day. One thing I do know is that we shouldn’t be waiting for the Lincoln Project to put up a FIERCE ad denouncing Trump and his asshole buddy Putin on this latest matter. Where the fuck is the DNC?

      • Exactly. The DNC has a very specific job and I’m sick of the Bernie Bro demonization of it for every damn thing and this absurd expectation that its job is to lead on the prosecution of President Trump, especially since in the last four years it’s seen its job as the placating of the Bernie camp.

        • Piss on the Bernie camp. The smart progressive lawmakers, like Pressley, Jayapal and even AOC to an extent, are putting distance between themselves and the Bernie fanatics.

  6. Michael!! I am so glad you wrote this story. And so fast, so well and with so much information in it. I woke up this morning thinking, hmmmmmmm, I need to write about this–the projection of treason onto Obama while it was the Orange Tangerine himself who was committing treason. Thinking this story may have been leaked by one among the stampeding herd fleeing the Intelligence community or the Defense Department.
    My Dad, rest his soul, used to ask, “Is there no end to the degradation?” And this one I think were he here would have him using the huge panoply of scatological words and phrases in his arsenal.

  7. Don’t forget that Trump recently sent ventilators and other critical medical equipment to Russia. Does anybody want to start a betting pool to guess at how much of the Covid-19 stimulus aid that was secretly doled out by the Treasury Dept. went into the hands of Russian oligarchs to whom Trump, Manafort and Jared are indebted?

    • I wouldn’t take that bet. And by the way, everyone that dealt with the trump supply line said they paid exorbitant prices for medical supplies. Where did that money go. I didn’t see where Jared brought a suitcase to the Oval Office and made a ceremony of turning it over to some charity or whatever.

  8. I’ve said since his election that he needs to go. He has committed numerous acts of treason. Hell his election was orchestrated by Russia. You don’t need a brick wall to fall on you to figure that out.

    • The usual gaggle of Trump supporters seem pretty dispirited about all of this, at least in my little corner of internet heaven. All I’ve seen are some mumbles about Biden being a senile pedophile. Nothing new, and no real energy behind it. I imagine even some of those idiots are taken aback by this. A very few, most likely.

  9. Bolton(yech) described the Helsinki meeting impotus had with the murderous thug for 2 hours, ALONE! 5 months later the US deserted Syria. Without Russia the trump org would be bankrupt. From the beginning Russia has been behind any and every policy move by this administration. He has been a traitor since day one, and before.

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