I decided to read The Plot To Hack America: How Putin’s Cyberspies and Wikileaks Tried To Steal The 2016 Election after I had calmed down a bit following the results. I wanted to read as many books about the 2016 election as I possibly could.
But, I wanted all the books to be from established writers with real expertise in the different areas related to the election. I don’t remember how I discovered The Plot… but I was instantly interested in it when I read that the author, Malcolm Nance, is a New York Times bestselling author and a career Navy intelligence officer. I also wanted to read his book because, considering the title, I thought that I could learn more about the hacking itself, not only why it was done, but how.
I read the book very fast, not only because it’s just a bit over 200 pages but also because it reads like a spy novel. Nance’s breadth of knowledge is impressive, and he writes in a straightforward manner that is easy to follow. However, I really didn’t learn much about hacking. What the book is really about is how Russia makes spies and, even more shocking, how Donald Trump could be a Russian spy, even unwittingly.
Now, I am not a conspiracy theorist, and while the more I read the more his arguments were convincing, I kept my guard up and decided that I would not conclude that the current President of the United States is a Russian spy. It was simply too far-fetched for me to imagine. I also decided not to write an article about it, even though I had loved the book. As credible as Nance seemed, I realized that the subject was too explosive.
Two days after finishing the book and learning about kompromat for the very first time, the story of the alleged golden showers tape surfaced. I was floored.
Still, I didn’t want to write an article about the book. Suddenly, I felt that the book was no longer explosive, it was downright nuclear. I recommended the book on Twitter a few times but left it at that.
So, why did I decide to write about it now? Two reasons: On Saturday, during an interview with Bill O’Reilly, in an evident defense of Putin, Trump stated that “there are a lot of killers. You think our country’s so innocent?” in reply to O’Reilly’s comment that Putin is a killer. Yesterday, according to Politico, Nancy Pelosi “urged the FBI to probe President Trump’s finances and personal ties to find out if the Russian government is blackmailing him.” It’s very likely that Pelosi’s decision to ask for a probe was triggered by Trump’s answer to O’Reilly, in addition to other comments he made throughout his campaign, and actions he’s taken in the past two weeks since becoming President.
To be honest, I don’t think that Donald Trump is a Russian spy. However, I do think that now it’s not so far-fetched to think that Russia is indeed holding something over his head. I am torn. As I fervently hope that Russia has nothing on Trump, I realize that if this is the case, then Trump’s staunch defense of Putin not only makes no sense, it’s dangerous. I’m incapable of deciding which is the worst scenario.
I’d like to say that every American should read this book. But, I already know that staunch supporters of Donald Trump will not believe a word of it. No, this book needs to be read by every American who likes to be informed with facts and in-depth analysis regardless of their political views.