According to a declassified report by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), Russia and Iran were allegedly involved in campaigns to “influence” the 2020 U.S. election. However, intelligence agencies discovered no evidence that extra-regional actors attempted to change votes or other technical facets of the voting process, per the findings of the declassified report that was released on March 16, 2021.
The two countries who allegedly tried to influence the 2020 elections sought different results. Russia allegedly tried to boost former President Donald Trump. On the other hand, Iran allegedly tried everything possible to go for Biden. However, according to five important judgments detailed in the declassified report no foreign actors directly interfered in the voting process of the 2020 elections.
“We have no indications that any foreign actor attempted to alter any technical aspect of the voting process in the 2020 US elections, including voter registration, casting ballots, vote tabulation, or reporting results,” the report stated in its conclusion.
Furthermore, Russian President Vladimir Putin “authorized, and a range of Russian government organizations conducted,” operations with the purpose of derailing Biden’s candidacy and the Democratic Party, which would end up benefiting president Donald Trump.
“A key element of Moscow’s strategy this election cycle was its use of proxies linked to Russian intelligence to push influence narratives—including misleading or unsubstantiated allegations against President Biden—to US media organizations, US officials, and prominent US individuals, including some close to former President Trump and his administration,” the report added.
Back in October, there was already talk about Russia and Iran were seeking to influence the election through its acquisition of voter registration data, but the report released on March 16 provided a comprehensive recollection of the intelligence community’s discoveries. Some Trump administration officials scapegoated Iran for sending threatening emails to voters that pretended to be from the Proud Boys right before the 2020 elections.
While president, Donald Trump was a major skeptic of the intelligence community’s take on Russian interference in the 2016 election. The past 4 years has been filled with non-stop coverage of how Russia interfered in the 2016 elections to undermine Hillary Clinton during her presidential bid.
I say this much ado about nothing. With the U.S. parked all over the Middle East and involved in decades of meddling in Iran’s affairs, it has invited all sorts of blowback.
On top of that, the U.S. government has been trying to pick fights with countries such as Russia by expanding NATO and pushing color revolutions in countries that are located in Russia’s traditional sphere of influence.
The U.S. needs to scale back its foreign policy and focus on actual national defense. That means investing in cybersecurity, border security, and establishing basic deterrence. Additionally, it can enact strict immigration control to keep foreign actors from undermining the U.S. from within.
None of this requires the U.S. to be constantly policing the entire world and getting entangled in pointless foreign conflicts.