Earlier in 2016, a U.S. military official said the U.S. "needs and wants Russia as an enemy," which was followed by a litany of falsehoods about Russian threats from elected and appointed officials. A hacked email showed a NATO general plotting conflict with Russia, as American and NATO military forces amass along Russia's borders.
U.S. intervention in Syria has provided the perfect context for escalating tensions. In its effort to topple the Assad government, the U.S. nurtured the Salafist fundamentalist sect in Syria, which went on to become a major part of ISIS. As U.S. military operations get dangerously close to Syrian or Russian forces (invited there by Assad), any "accidental" strike could be the spark for World War III.
If this were not disturbing enough, the reality in the homeland is downright frightening. Since 9/11, the U.S. military/surveillance state has been able to use – and perpetuate – the specter of terrorism to dismantle the rights of its citizens.
In order to sustain public support for its war-making, the State must suppress dissent. If it cannot achieve this through media control and other subtle means, it is prepared to take more forceful measures.