Active Measures Undermined Hillary and The Division Heads

Active Measures Undermined Hillary and The Division Heads


Leonard Zwelling

“Active measures” is a Russian maneuver. The Russians dive deeply into undermining the mechanisms of another society in an effort to turn events their way. This is what they have been accused of doing to the United States during the last election cycle and no one doubts that they did given the WikiLeaks releases of John Podesta’s emails. There is also no doubt among the American intelligence community that this was done to favor the election of Mr. Trump and to damage the chances of Mrs. Clinton. It is likely that the Russians never thought they would be so successful. Now we all have to figure out a few things.

First, did anyone in the Trump campaign knowingly cooperate with the Russians to undermine the Clinton electoral effort? If so, that may well constitute treason. If not, let’s put this to bed and move on.

Second, was the then-President-elect directing such activity a la Nixon and the Watergate cover-up? This is even more crucial and probably more unlikely, but again, it needs resolution.

Finally, can anything short of a special prosecutor adequately get to the bottom of all of this? I am not sure. I am more than willing to allow the Intelligence Committees in both houses of Congress to give this the old electoral college try, but I fear it won’t be enough for either side once it is over. A special prosecutor or non-partisan commission may be indicated to finally determine the actual effects of the Russian active measures.

This is a story under development in Washington, Moscow and elsewhere. I don’t think the Democrats are acquitting themselves all that well screaming for every Trump nominee to resign and opposing everyone of the President’s choices. #Not smart.

On the other hand, the GOP has been put in an awful bind by the Tweeter-in-Chief now that he has accused President Obama of tapping his phones. If Obama did, why? If he didn’t, why say he did? If Obama did tap Trump’s phones, he could not order it himself. That would have to come from a federal judge as requested by the Justice Department or intelligence agencies and would have to have been for probable cause. Trump better hope he’s making the wire tapping up. If not, there is a lot more fire where the smoke is now. A wiretap would be indicative of probable wrongdoing by Trump, his campaign, Russia or all three.

As usual, this reminds me of events at Ye Olde 1515.

The one thing that Dr. DePinho did very effectively to quell any opposition to his poor leadership was to decimate the Division Heads. As far as I can tell, only two remain of those who he inherited. This has been through attrition of the involuntary kind, mostly. With the exception of Radiotherapy, I think the new Heads don’t come close to the old ones in accomplishment, managerial skill or intellectual power. All of this can be debated though. What cannot be debated is how ineffective the Division Heads have been at guiding the clinical enterprise given the monumental financial shortfalls due to either clinical inactivity or overspending. Either way, the leaders of the clinical services have the oversight of these activities and were either not minding the store or had handed the keys to the ex-president. Either way, shame on them.

I think that the replacement of all of those Division Heads is telling. First, it was a disruptive active measure by the ex-president AND his executive staff that replaced the provens with the novices.

Second, that one of the newest members of the Division Heads group should be selected to be the new COO says a lot about those who were there for years. Either they were not trusted to do the job by the faculty or were incapable. We should be grateful Dr. Hahn was there.

The Russians clearly used active measures to interfere with the election of 2016. Whether it made THE difference or whether the Trump team was overly helpful must be resolved and measures put into place to make sure it does not happen in the future.

That Dr. DePinho used equally nefarious measures to undermine the power of the clinical service chiefs is beyond question in my mind, but is, in the end, irrelevant. What is relevant is how ineffective the Division Heads have been as a group in shaping clinical policy, clinical operations and clinical fiscal responsibility.

If we get a new president in Washington, which I believe is possible, the influence of the Russians on our democratic processes must be unearthed and blunted.

WHEN we get a new president on Holcombe, job one will be reconstituting a strong group of Division Heads to counterbalance those on top of the administration who really know next to nothing about clinical oncology.

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