"So about that doping scandal? Yeah, I guess we did that."
This, remarkably, is what Russian officials just told The New York Times.
They said it was an "institutional conspiracy."
They said a lab director tampered with urine samples at the Olympics.
They said a deputy sports minister ordered cover-ups for years.
They said the Federal Security Service was involved.
And they said this after months of stonewalling as Moscow claimed that the biggest doping scandal in Olympic history was nothing more than a Western conspiracy.
Now, of course, they hedged and parsed it and claimed it wasn't really state-sponsored because Vladimir Putin and his inner circle weren't involved. But still.
I don't know about you, but I'm sensing a bit of a pattern here.
Remember when the Kremlin claimed there were no Russian troops involved in the annexation of Crimea?
And then, remember when suddenly, there were?
Remember when Vladimir Putin even began bragging about it?
Remember when the Kremlin insisted there were no Russian military personnel in the Donbas?
And then, remember when Putin acknowledged that Russian military personnel might be "resolving various issues" there?
And oh, by the way, remember when the Kremlin was denying it was bombing Aleppo?
One has to wonder which Kremlin denial will fall next.
Involvement in the coup plot in Montenegro perhaps?
Or maybe the hacking of the U.S. Democratic National Committee's servers. Or the German Bundestag.
And one has to wonder with all these denials, nondenial denials, and ultimate admissions, whether there will ever be any consequences,