We don’t hear this too often so it bears repeating: The ongoing Russian attack against the United States would’ve ultimately failed were it not for millions of unwitting American foot soldiers who helped it succeed. As accomplices, way too many of us were easily — willingly, in many cases — hoodwinked into sharing and retweeting propaganda designed to elect Donald Trump and, amid the chaos, undermine Western democracy.
In that respect, Russia’s active measures carried Vladimir Putin’s mission up to our doorsteps, but we were the ones who opened our virtual doors, welcoming in all the riffraff, treating the enemy like house guests, while suggesting all of our friends do the same. Putin and his operatives recognized a significant weakness here — the semi-distracted, drive-by gullibility of American social media users. As much as it pains me to say it, Putin was right. We might even be more gullible than he forecasted.