Historians tell us that in the final days of the Third Reich, as the Red Army surrounded the Berlin Führerbunker, a crazed Adolf Hitler ranted, raved, and issued increasingly irrational orders for non-existent Wehrmacht divisions to counterattack and repel the invaders. Even as Germany was being laid waste by the British and American armies advancing from the west and the Russians from the east, Hitler still appeared to believe that victory was within reach. After all, when he had started World War II, world domination by the Nazis had been all but certain. It had to have been inconceivable to him that he had been so wrong from the beginning, and now he would have to face the consequences.
Equally deluded and disbelieving was Josef Goebbels, the Reich’s propaganda minister. According to historical reports, even at that late date and in those dire circumstances, Goebbels’ deluded denial of the advancing peril equaled that of his Führer.
I couldn’t help but think back to crazy Adolf as I watched the utterly bizarre performance by the unhinged Democrat senators who hurled meaningless, semi-hysterical invective at Attorney General William Barr as he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Similarly, the mainstream media’s equally outlandish portrayals of Barr’s steady, thoughtful, and intelligent testimony reminded me of the credulous and loyal Goebbels. Just as Adolf and Josef couldn’t accept the reality that they had lost the war, Senators Richard Blumenthal (D., Conn.), Mazie Hirono (D., Hawaii), Kamala Harris (D., Calif.), and their media enablers seem to be incapable of accepting the results of the Mueller investigation.
When Robert Mueller was appointed special counsel two years ago, the Democrats and the mainstream media declared their firm expectation that proof would be forthcoming that President Trump had colluded with Russia to steal the election. According to the Democrats and their media subsidiary, the eager and committed “dream team” of Hillary Clinton sycophants who comprised Team Mueller would make short work of Trump and expose him as a traitor. They couldn’t miss.
But, against all odds and every optimistic prediction, Team Mueller came up empty. They found no conspiracy by any American with Russia and declined to bring obstruction of justice charges against the president. Even though they did their best to lard up their report with derogatory characterizations of Trump, in the end it turned out to be an exploding cigar that left the Democrats and their media mouthpieces like so many metaphorical wide-eyed Wile E. Coyotes with sooty faces and singed eyebrows.
And, as Barr quietly and with great dignity schooled the Judiciary Committee on the realities of Mueller’s investigation, the Democrat senators seemed unable to accept the unavoidable and undeniable fact that for the last two years they and the progressive media had confidently and loudly championed a complete and utter hoax. So it was that Blumenthal and his frustrated cohort desperately flailed away and hurled meaningless invective at the cool, calm, and collected Attorney General.
On the eve of Barr’s testimony, Mueller leaked a letter addressed to the Attorney General complaining that Barr’s initial four-page summary of the report’s conclusions “did not fully capture” the scope of the 448-page report. According to the Committee’s Democrats, this somehow constituted proof that Barr was shilling for the president.
In response, Barr pointed out that after publishing his summary, he had released the complete Mueller report with minimal redactions so that the senators and the public could assess for themselves Team Mueller’s findings. But this rational reply only heightened the Democrats’ fury and slanderous attacks on the Attorney General.
Finally, Barr had had enough. He calmly and with devastating effect pointed out the obvious disconnect between the Committee Democrats’ accusations and reality.
“How did we get to the point where the evidence is now that the president was falsely accused of colluding with the Russians, accused of being treasonous and accused of being a Russian agent, and the evidence now is that that was without a basis?” Barr asked. “And two years of his administration have been dominated by allegations that have now been proven false. But to listen to some of the rhetoric, you would think the Mueller report had found the opposite.”
And then the Attorney General raised the stakes by once again pledging to investigate the activities of the FBI, Justice Department, and CIA during and after the 2016 presidential campaign. Among the matters to be investigated were the many illegal leaks of protected information. In doing so, he ominously raised the possibility that there may have been “overreach” by top officials, adding that: “But what we have to be concerned about is a few people at the top getting into their heads that they know better than the American people.”
Leaks of classified information by top officials who know better than the American people who should be president? Was Barr giving former FBI Director James Comey a warning? Given that Comey has helpfully stuck his head in the noose by publicly acknowledging his intentional leaking of classified material to cause the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Trump, it would certainly appear to be the case.
And then came the crowning moment when Barr flatly declared that the investigation of the president was over, and the Mueller report was available to the American people who could read it and decide on their own how to vote in the next presidential election.
“We have to stop,” he intoned, “using the criminal justice process as a political weapon.”
Although the Attorney General carefully avoided saying that he had reached any conclusions about “overreach” by top government officials, the mere fact that he raised that possible investigative subject should induce night sweats and fitful insomnia throughout the bedrooms of the Seat of Government.
Who knows? Just like the popularity of backyard bomb shelters during the height of the Cold War, underground Führer-style bunkers may become the hot new trend among deep state leaders looking to make a desperate, crazed last stand against the approaching forces of justice.
George Parry is a former federal and state prosecutor. He is a regular contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer and blogs at knowledgeisgood.net. He may be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.