In May 2019, Dr. Stephen F. Cohen, who is a professor emeritus of Russian studies at Princeton University and New York University, warned that, "Russiagate continues to endanger American national security by depriving a US president, for the first time in the nuclear age, of the diplomatic flexibility to deal with a Kremlin leader in times of crisis."
Professor Cohen was on a small list of brave liberals who challenged the conspiracy theorists on Russiagate. This list included Glenn Greenwald, Aaron Maté, Jimmy Dore, Kyle Kulinski, Matt Taibbi, Michael Tracey, and Max Blumenthal. I disagree with these journalists on most of the issues. Nevertheless, I think each of them deserves a Profile in Courage Award for standing up to the liberal media juggernaut.
Like George Orwell, these were all people of the left who effectively challenged the abuses of the left. As Orwell wrote in "1984," "Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past."
Because of Russiagate (2016-2019), the impeachment trial (2019-2020), and now the 2020 presidential campaign, the Democrats have made it impossible for President Trump to reduce tensions with Russia during his tenure.
For all of our differences with President Putin, Russia is an indispensable partner in fighting climate change. Unless the Democrats accept the fact that the Mueller Report found no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, I think it will be impossible for either Trump, or Biden, to develop a sufficiently cooperative relationship with Russia on climate change.
In my previous Newsmax article on climate change, I pointed out that Thomas Crowther, and his team at ETH Zurich, discovered that the world had room for an additional 2.2 billion acres of land to plant trees, which could capture 205 gigatons of carbon. Russia has the largest reforestation potential at 373 million acres. This is 16.9 percent of world’s available reforestation potential. The second largest country is the United States at 255 million acres.
This study focused on land with low human activity, which could naturally support forests. For this reason, grasslands and wetlands were not included.
In addition to the 205 gigatons of carbon capture from trees, Crowther has discussed how we could capture another 116 gigatons of carbon. Approximately 31 percent will come from preserving our wetlands and peatlands, 39 percent from grasslands and shrublands, and the remaining 30 percent from soil carbon from new forests.
Russia is the biggest player in the world when it comes to reforestation as well as preserving grasslands and wetlands. Russia has the most peatlands (1,375,690 km2) in the world. They are followed by Canada (1,133,926 km2), Indonesia (265,500 km2) and the United States (223,809 km2)
Peatlands represent less than 3 percent of the world’s area (3 million square kilometers). According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), peatlands contain 550 gigatons of soil carbon, which is 42 percent of soil carbon worldwide.
Approximately 15 percent of peatlands have already been destroyed. This is contributing to 5.6 percent of carbon emissions.
Along with its natural resources, Russia’s defense industry could also be helpful in fighting climate change. In my previous article, I mentioned the drone technology from Dendra Systems. In 2019, this company successfully used drones to fire pre-germinated seed pods into the ground.
With just two people, operating ten drones, the company estimated that they could plant 400,000 trees per day. That’s 146 million trees per year with just ten drones. At that rate, it would take approximately 8,000 of these drones to produce 1.2 trillion trees worldwide over the course of ten years.
If US-Russia relations were able to improve, defense contractors in both the United States and Russia could focus more on climate change. The defense contractors in United States and Russia, along with other major countries, have the resources to build a sufficient number of drones to plant 1.2 trillion trees.
Every year, we emit 10 gigatons of carbon in new emissions. Since planting 1.2 trillion trees has the potential to sequester 205 gigatons tons of carbon, this action alone could reverse climate change back twenty years. This could give us enough time to develop other technologies to reducing emissions further.
Russia interference in the 2016 election was unacceptable, but it didn’t change the outcome of the election and we need to work with Russia on climate change. Even Secretary Hillary Clinton believes that Comey’s letter was the most decisive factor.
Secretary Clinton wrote in her book What Happened, that she was on her way to winning before the Comey letter on October 28th. She believed Russia’s intervention was extensive, but it wasn’t enough to change the outcome. On page 406 of her book, Clinton wrote:
"Here’s a particularly stark way of understanding the impact: Even if Comey caused just 0.6 percent of Election Day voters to change their votes, and even if that swing only occurred in the Rust Belt, it would be been enough to shift the Electoral College from me to Trump."
In her book, Clinton cited Nate Silver, Corey Lewandowski, exit polls, and even focus groups to prove that Comey’s impact was decisive.
We cannot allow Russiagate to delay our work on climate change.
The Democrats must give the Trump administration a green light to work with Russia to reverse climate change.
Robert Zapesochny is a researcher and writer whose work focuses on foreign affairs, national security and presidential history. His work has appeared in a range of publications, including The American Spectator, the Washington Times, and The American Conservative. For several years Robert worked closely with Peter Hannaford, a senior aide to Ronald Reagan, as the primary researcher on four books and numerous columns. Robert has also worked on multiple presidential, national and statewide campaigns, including as a field office staffer for the Bush-Cheney campaign. Due to his own Russian-Jewish heritage, Robert has a keen interest in the history of U.S.-Soviet relations. In 2017 he was the co-organizer of an effort that erected commemorative statue of Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev in Moscow. Robert graduated with a major in Political Science from the University at Buffalo, and received his Master's in Public Administration, with a focus in healthcare, from the State University of New York College at Brockport. When he's not writing, Robert works for a medical research company in Rochester, New York. Read Robert Zapesochny's Reports — More Here.
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