Hollywood director Rob Reiner of “Stand By Me” and “The Princess Bride” fame announced on Tuesday morning the launch of the Committee to Investigate Russia, a group of Hollywood celebrities, media elites, liberals and Never-Trump figures dedicated to investigating alleged Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Reiner is, of course, also famous for directing the famed mockumentary film “This is Spinal Tap” — and one could be forgiven for thinking that his Committee to Investigate Russia was the satirical subject of another such mockumentary.
“Using hacking, Twitter armies, and fake news, the Kremlin engaged in an aggressive effort to subvert the American democratic process,” the group’s website declares in its About Us section.
[lz_third_party align=center includes=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uz9PNoecNxU]
The committee’s website describes the group as a “nonprofit, non-partisan resource provided to help Americans recognize and understand the gravity of Russia’s continuing attacks on our democracy.”
In addition to Reiner, the group also managed to draft Morgan Freeman, who is featured in an ominous propaganda video produced by the group. “We have been attacked, we are at war,” declares Freeman.
“Imagine this movie script: A former KGB spy, angry at the collapse of his motherland, plots a course for revenge,” Freeman continues. “Taking advantage of the chaos, he works his way up through the ranks of a post-Soviet Russia, and becomes president. He establishes an authoritarian regime — then he sets his sights on his sworn enemy, the United States.”
In addition to recruiting actors to give fantastical and ahistorical descriptions of Russian President Vladimir Putin, the group also has former CIA Director James Clapper on its advisory board. It will surely not be lost on some observers that the Committee to Investigate Russia was announced the very same day that Clapper was found to have been lying when he said no one in the Trump campaign was wiretapped.
On Tuesday it was revealed that — despite Clapper’s previous claim — former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was indeed wiretapped.
In addition to Reiner and Clapper, the advisory board features neoconservative historian and Council on Foreign Relations member Max Boot; Norman Ornstein, resident scholar at the neoconservative think tank American Enterprise Institute; and ardent Never-Trumper and political commentator Charles Sykes. Adding to the whole neoconservative propaganda vibe is the fact that the group’s logo is suspiciously similar to that of Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) 2008 presidential campaign.
For all the committee’s claims of Russian acts of war, its own words — “Twitter armies and fake news” — make it quite clear that when it describes Russian interference with American democracy, it is really just angry that Russian bots may have promoted anti-Clinton, anti-globalist news and opinion.
“If we are to preserve the democracy our founding fathers envisioned and for which so many Americans fought and died, we must be vigilant and we must act,” states a letter from the group’s advisory board. “That requires information about and comprehension of the threats we face.”
(photo credit, homepage image: en.kremlin.ru; photo credit, article image: The Presidential Press and Information Office, Flickr)