Softpanorama

May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
Home Switchboard Unix Administration Red Hat TCP/IP Networks Neoliberalism Toxic Managers
(slightly skeptical) Educational society promoting "Back to basics" movement against IT overcomplexity and  bastardization of classic Unix

Mueller investigation bulletin, 2017

Home 2020 2019 2018 2017

For the list of top articles see Recommended Links section


Top Visited
Switchboard
Latest
Past week
Past month

NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

[Dec 31, 2017] Rod Rosenstein Mueller Investigation Claims That It's Limited Don't Stand Up National Review

Dec 31, 2017 | www.nationalreview.com

me data-inf-script-frame name=

javascript:false

by Andrew C. McCarthy August 7, 2017 5:26 PM @AndrewCMcCarthy The scope of the special counsel's investigation remains unlimited, despite the deputy attorney general's claim that it's not a 'fishing expedition.' To what should be the surprise of no one, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has tried to defend his conferral of boundless jurisdiction to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of President Donald Trump. But the conferral is indefensible because Rosenstein failed to adhere to regulations that require a clear statement of the basis for a criminal investigation. This failure is not cured by the DAG's stubborn insistence that there really are limits to Mueller's jurisdiction . . . just not limits he can talk about. Interviewed by Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday, the DAG claimed that there is a definite "scope of the investigation" because he and Mueller have agreed on one. Yet, he wouldn't say what that scope is -- only that if Mueller wants to probe "something that's outside that scope," he needs Rosenstein's "permission to expand his investigation." Pressed by Wallace, Rosenstein was reduced to tautology: Mueller is not engaged in a "fishing expedition," you see, because "the special counsel is subject to the rules and regulations of the Department of Justice, and we don't engage in fishing expeditions." I see. This, er, explanation put me in mind of a defense lawyer I once encountered while prosecuting a terrorism case. The defendant, he explained, could not be a terrorist because the lawyer's firm did not represent terrorists. Pretty compelling, no? Unfortunately, Wallace did not engage the DAG on the fundamental flaw in his appointment of Mueller. Rosenstein maintains that DOJ officials (presumably including himself) are subject to "the rules and regulations of the Department of Justice." Yet, those rules and regulations expressly mandate that there be a basis for a criminal investigation or prosecution before a special counsel is appointed. The appropriate scope of the investigation is not supposed to be something to which the DAG and the special counsel agree in off-the-record conversations. It is governed by what is supposed to be the specified predicate for a criminal investigation without which there should be no special-counsel appointment in the first place. (function($){ var swapArticleBodyPullAd = function() { if ($('body').hasClass('node-type-articles')) { var $pullAd = $('.story-container .pullad').addClass('mobile-position'); if (window.matchMedia("(min-width: 640px)").matches) { if ($pullAd.hasClass('mobile-position')) { $pullAd .addClass('desktop-position') .insertBefore('.article-ad-desktop-position'); } } else { if ($pullAd.hasClass('mobile-position')) { $pullAd .addClass('mobile-position') .insertBefore('.article-ad-mobile-position'); } } } }; $(window).on('resize', function(){ swapArticleBodyPullAd(); }).resize(); })(jQuery); Don't take my word for it. The regulation, 28 CFR Sec. 600.1, states that the Justice Department may appoint a special counsel when it is "determine[d] that criminal investigation of a person or matter is warranted," and that the Justice Department's handling of "that investigation or prosecution of that person or matter" in the normal course "would present a conflict of interest for the Department" (emphasis added). The regulation does not permit the Justice Department to appoint a special counsel in order to determine whether there is a basis for a criminal investigation. To the contrary, the basis for a criminal investigation must pre-exist the appointment. It is the criminal investigation that triggers the special counsel, not the other way around. Rosenstein, instead, appointed a special counsel and unleashed him to sniff around and see if he could come up with a crime. It is specious to claim, as Rosenstein does, that his citation of the Russia counterintelligence investigation is a sufficiently definite statement of the scope of the investigation. As we have frequently pointed out, a counterintelligence investigation is not a criminal investigation. There need be no suspicion of crime before a counterintelligence probe is commenced. The purpose of the latter is to collect information about a foreign power, not to investigate a suspected crime. As shown above, however, the need to probe a specific suspected crime is, by regulation, the prerequisite for appointing a special counsel. The criminal suspicions that gave rise to Watergate were not kept under wraps. Moreover, if citing the Russia counterintelligence investigation were a sufficiently definite statement of Mueller's "scope," Rosenstein and Mueller would not have had to agree on what the scope of the investigation is -- as Rosenstein told Wallace they have done, privately. Which brings us (yet again) to the regulation governing a special counsel's jurisdiction, 28 CFR 600.4. It states that the Justice Department will provide the special counsel "with a specific factual statement of the matter to be investigated." We know from the above-quoted reg (Sec. 600.1) that controls special-counsel appointments that this "matter to be investigated" must involve a suspected crime. Patently, the order by which Rosenstein appointed Mueller to conduct the Russia counterintelligence investigation is not a specific factual statement of a transaction giving rise to a suspected crime. Nor is Rosenstein relieved of the obligation to comply with the regulation because Justice Department officials prefer not to talk about investigations publicly. It bears remembering that we have arrived at this point largely because, on March 20, 2017, former FBI director James Comey publicly disclosed the existence of the investigation into Russia's election-meddling. For good measure, Comey added that the investigation would include scrutiny of Trump-campaign ties to, and coordination with, the Putin regime, as well as an assessment of whether crimes were committed. Comey testified that he had been authorized by the Justice Department to make this public announcement. How is it, then, that the Trump Justice Department, against law-enforcement protocols, authorized that public discussion of the investigation but now refuses to make disclosures regarding the investigation that are required by regulation? The president is our government's most significant public official. An investigation is corrosive of his capacity to carry out his responsibilities. It thus compromises the public interest. We tolerate these debilitating challenges only if (a) there is a good-faith basis to suspect the president may be guilty of criminal misconduct, (b) he is made aware of what the basis for suspicion is so he can defend himself, and (c) the public is informed so we can assess the jeopardy for ourselves. If a president is reasonably suspected of a serious crime, he should by all means bear the burden of paralysis, and we should hold him accountable -- whether that involves voting him out of, or otherwise seeking his removal from, office. If he is not actually a criminal suspect, though, or if he is suspected of something that is objectively trivial, he should not be under a cloud that gratuitously damages his capacity to govern and our security. The criminal suspicions that gave rise to Watergate were not kept under wraps. Nor were those that led to Iran-Contra, or the scandals involving Whitewater/Lewinsky and Valerie Plame. In each instance, the president and the public understood the basis for criminal investigation and prosecution; the government's capacity to function was affected to a degree commensurate with the gravity of the allegations; and the ability of special prosecutors to investigate was not compromised. Clarity about the investigation, which is what the governing regulations call for, was in the public interest. To suggest that invoking the Russia counterintelligence investigation gives Mueller a finite scope from which he is unlikely to stray is to betray naïveté – or at least an unfamiliarity with counterintelligence. The Russia counterintelligence probe is an information-gathering inquiry into the Putin regime's election-meddling, premised on the intelligence community's conclusion that Putin wanted Trump to win the presidency. Therefore, to take just one example, any suspected misconduct of Trump's that could theoretically be known to Putin and usable for blackmail purposes would be relevant. Such suspected misconduct might have utterly nothing to do with the 2016 election, yet it could be highly pertinent to a counterintelligence probe of Putin's 2016 election-meddling. Understand: I am not saying there has been any such misconduct. I have no way of knowing. I am merely pointing out that there is no merit in the claim that, by invoking Russia's 2016 election-meddling and suspicions of Trump-campaign collusion in it, Rosenstein has effectively limited Mueller's scope to Trump dealings with Russia in connection with the 2016 campaign. The regulations governing Mueller's appointment as special counsel call for Rosenstein to specify the basis for a criminal investigation, and thus limit Mueller to that specification. Rosenstein has not done that. Despite the DAG's claims to the contrary, Mueller is thus free to conduct a fishing expedition. Rosenstein has the authority to correct this error by superseding his statement of Mueller's jurisdiction in a manner that complies with the regulations. For whatever reason, he has chosen not to do that. READ MORE:Is Mueller's Grand Jury Impeachment Step One?Mueller's Grand Jury: What It MeansTrump Has Himself, Not Sessions, to Blame for the Limitless Mueller Investigation -- Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/450230/rod-rosenstein-mueller-investigation-claims-its-limited-dont-stand

[Dec 31, 2017] Rod Rosenstein Mueller Investigation Claims That It's Limited Don't Stand Up National Review

Dec 31, 2017 | www.nationalreview.com

me data-inf-script-frame name=

javascript:false

by Andrew C. McCarthy August 7, 2017 5:26 PM @AndrewCMcCarthy The scope of the special counsel's investigation remains unlimited, despite the deputy attorney general's claim that it's not a 'fishing expedition.' To what should be the surprise of no one, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has tried to defend his conferral of boundless jurisdiction to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of President Donald Trump. But the conferral is indefensible because Rosenstein failed to adhere to regulations that require a clear statement of the basis for a criminal investigation. This failure is not cured by the DAG's stubborn insistence that there really are limits to Mueller's jurisdiction . . . just not limits he can talk about. Interviewed by Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday, the DAG claimed that there is a definite "scope of the investigation" because he and Mueller have agreed on one. Yet, he wouldn't say what that scope is -- only that if Mueller wants to probe "something that's outside that scope," he needs Rosenstein's "permission to expand his investigation." Pressed by Wallace, Rosenstein was reduced to tautology: Mueller is not engaged in a "fishing expedition," you see, because "the special counsel is subject to the rules and regulations of the Department of Justice, and we don't engage in fishing expeditions." I see. This, er, explanation put me in mind of a defense lawyer I once encountered while prosecuting a terrorism case. The defendant, he explained, could not be a terrorist because the lawyer's firm did not represent terrorists. Pretty compelling, no? Unfortunately, Wallace did not engage the DAG on the fundamental flaw in his appointment of Mueller. Rosenstein maintains that DOJ officials (presumably including himself) are subject to "the rules and regulations of the Department of Justice." Yet, those rules and regulations expressly mandate that there be a basis for a criminal investigation or prosecution before a special counsel is appointed. The appropriate scope of the investigation is not supposed to be something to which the DAG and the special counsel agree in off-the-record conversations. It is governed by what is supposed to be the specified predicate for a criminal investigation without which there should be no special-counsel appointment in the first place. (function($){ var swapArticleBodyPullAd = function() { if ($('body').hasClass('node-type-articles')) { var $pullAd = $('.story-container .pullad').addClass('mobile-position'); if (window.matchMedia("(min-width: 640px)").matches) { if ($pullAd.hasClass('mobile-position')) { $pullAd .addClass('desktop-position') .insertBefore('.article-ad-desktop-position'); } } else { if ($pullAd.hasClass('mobile-position')) { $pullAd .addClass('mobile-position') .insertBefore('.article-ad-mobile-position'); } } } }; $(window).on('resize', function(){ swapArticleBodyPullAd(); }).resize(); })(jQuery); Don't take my word for it. The regulation, 28 CFR Sec. 600.1, states that the Justice Department may appoint a special counsel when it is "determine[d] that criminal investigation of a person or matter is warranted," and that the Justice Department's handling of "that investigation or prosecution of that person or matter" in the normal course "would present a conflict of interest for the Department" (emphasis added). The regulation does not permit the Justice Department to appoint a special counsel in order to determine whether there is a basis for a criminal investigation. To the contrary, the basis for a criminal investigation must pre-exist the appointment. It is the criminal investigation that triggers the special counsel, not the other way around. Rosenstein, instead, appointed a special counsel and unleashed him to sniff around and see if he could come up with a crime. It is specious to claim, as Rosenstein does, that his citation of the Russia counterintelligence investigation is a sufficiently definite statement of the scope of the investigation. As we have frequently pointed out, a counterintelligence investigation is not a criminal investigation. There need be no suspicion of crime before a counterintelligence probe is commenced. The purpose of the latter is to collect information about a foreign power, not to investigate a suspected crime. As shown above, however, the need to probe a specific suspected crime is, by regulation, the prerequisite for appointing a special counsel. The criminal suspicions that gave rise to Watergate were not kept under wraps. Moreover, if citing the Russia counterintelligence investigation were a sufficiently definite statement of Mueller's "scope," Rosenstein and Mueller would not have had to agree on what the scope of the investigation is -- as Rosenstein told Wallace they have done, privately. Which brings us (yet again) to the regulation governing a special counsel's jurisdiction, 28 CFR 600.4. It states that the Justice Department will provide the special counsel "with a specific factual statement of the matter to be investigated." We know from the above-quoted reg (Sec. 600.1) that controls special-counsel appointments that this "matter to be investigated" must involve a suspected crime. Patently, the order by which Rosenstein appointed Mueller to conduct the Russia counterintelligence investigation is not a specific factual statement of a transaction giving rise to a suspected crime. Nor is Rosenstein relieved of the obligation to comply with the regulation because Justice Department officials prefer not to talk about investigations publicly. It bears remembering that we have arrived at this point largely because, on March 20, 2017, former FBI director James Comey publicly disclosed the existence of the investigation into Russia's election-meddling. For good measure, Comey added that the investigation would include scrutiny of Trump-campaign ties to, and coordination with, the Putin regime, as well as an assessment of whether crimes were committed. Comey testified that he had been authorized by the Justice Department to make this public announcement. How is it, then, that the Trump Justice Department, against law-enforcement protocols, authorized that public discussion of the investigation but now refuses to make disclosures regarding the investigation that are required by regulation? The president is our government's most significant public official. An investigation is corrosive of his capacity to carry out his responsibilities. It thus compromises the public interest. We tolerate these debilitating challenges only if (a) there is a good-faith basis to suspect the president may be guilty of criminal misconduct, (b) he is made aware of what the basis for suspicion is so he can defend himself, and (c) the public is informed so we can assess the jeopardy for ourselves. If a president is reasonably suspected of a serious crime, he should by all means bear the burden of paralysis, and we should hold him accountable -- whether that involves voting him out of, or otherwise seeking his removal from, office. If he is not actually a criminal suspect, though, or if he is suspected of something that is objectively trivial, he should not be under a cloud that gratuitously damages his capacity to govern and our security. The criminal suspicions that gave rise to Watergate were not kept under wraps. Nor were those that led to Iran-Contra, or the scandals involving Whitewater/Lewinsky and Valerie Plame. In each instance, the president and the public understood the basis for criminal investigation and prosecution; the government's capacity to function was affected to a degree commensurate with the gravity of the allegations; and the ability of special prosecutors to investigate was not compromised. Clarity about the investigation, which is what the governing regulations call for, was in the public interest. To suggest that invoking the Russia counterintelligence investigation gives Mueller a finite scope from which he is unlikely to stray is to betray naïveté – or at least an unfamiliarity with counterintelligence. The Russia counterintelligence probe is an information-gathering inquiry into the Putin regime's election-meddling, premised on the intelligence community's conclusion that Putin wanted Trump to win the presidency. Therefore, to take just one example, any suspected misconduct of Trump's that could theoretically be known to Putin and usable for blackmail purposes would be relevant. Such suspected misconduct might have utterly nothing to do with the 2016 election, yet it could be highly pertinent to a counterintelligence probe of Putin's 2016 election-meddling. Understand: I am not saying there has been any such misconduct. I have no way of knowing. I am merely pointing out that there is no merit in the claim that, by invoking Russia's 2016 election-meddling and suspicions of Trump-campaign collusion in it, Rosenstein has effectively limited Mueller's scope to Trump dealings with Russia in connection with the 2016 campaign. The regulations governing Mueller's appointment as special counsel call for Rosenstein to specify the basis for a criminal investigation, and thus limit Mueller to that specification. Rosenstein has not done that. Despite the DAG's claims to the contrary, Mueller is thus free to conduct a fishing expedition. Rosenstein has the authority to correct this error by superseding his statement of Mueller's jurisdiction in a manner that complies with the regulations. For whatever reason, he has chosen not to do that. READ MORE:Is Mueller's Grand Jury Impeachment Step One?Mueller's Grand Jury: What It MeansTrump Has Himself, Not Sessions, to Blame for the Limitless Mueller Investigation -- Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/450230/rod-rosenstein-mueller-investigation-claims-its-limited-dont-stand

[Dec 28, 2017] How CrowdStrike placed malware in DNC hacked servers by Alex Christoforou

Highly recommended!
If this is true, then this is definitely a sophisticated false flag operation. Was malware Alperovich people injected specifically designed to implicate Russians? In other words Crowdstrike=Fancy Bear
Images removed. For full content please thee the original source
One interesting corollary of this analysis is that installing Crowdstrike software is like inviting a wolf to guard your chicken. If they are so dishonest you take enormous risks. That might be true for some other heavily advertized "intrusion prevention" toolkits. So those criminals who use mistyped popular addresses or buy Google searches to drive lemmings to their site and then flash the screen that they detected a virus on your computer a, please call provided number and for a small amount of money your virus will be removed get a new more sinister life.
I suspected many of such firms (for example ISS which was bought by IBM in 2006) to be scams long ago.
Notable quotes:
"... Disobedient Media outlines the DNC server cover-up evidenced in CrowdStrike malware infusion ..."
"... In the article, they claim to have just been working on eliminating the last of the hackers from the DNC's network during the past weekend (conveniently coinciding with Assange's statement and being an indirect admission that their Falcon software had failed to achieve it's stated capabilities at that time , assuming their statements were accurate) . ..."
"... To date, CrowdStrike has not been able to show how the malware had relayed any emails or accessed any mailboxes. They have also not responded to inquiries specifically asking for details about this. In fact, things have now been discovered that bring some of their malware discoveries into question. ..."
"... there is a reason to think Fancy Bear didn't start some of its activity until CrowdStrike had arrived at the DNC. CrowdStrike, in the indiciators of compromise they reported, identified three pieces of malware relating to Fancy Bear: ..."
"... They found that generally, in a lot of cases, malware developers didn't care to hide the compile times and that while implausible timestamps are used, it's rare that these use dates in the future. It's possible, but unlikely that one sample would have a postdated timestamp to coincide with their visit by mere chance but seems extremely unlikely to happen with two or more samples. Considering the dates of CrowdStrike's activities at the DNC coincide with the compile dates of two out of the three pieces of malware discovered and attributed to APT-28 (the other compiled approximately 2 weeks prior to their visit), the big question is: Did CrowdStrike plant some (or all) of the APT-28 malware? ..."
"... The IP address, according to those articles, was disabled in June 2015, eleven months before the DNC emails were acquired – meaning those IP addresses, in reality, had no involvement in the alleged hacking of the DNC. ..."
"... The fact that two out of three of the Fancy Bear malware samples identified were compiled on dates within the apparent five day period CrowdStrike were apparently at the DNC seems incredibly unlikely to have occurred by mere chance. ..."
"... That all three malware samples were compiled within ten days either side of their visit – makes it clear just how questionable the Fancy Bear malware discoveries were. ..."
Dec 28, 2017 | theduran.com

Of course the DNC did not want to the FBI to investigate its "hacked servers". The plan was well underway to excuse Hillary's pathetic election defeat to Trump, and CrowdStrike would help out by planting evidence to pin on those evil "Russian hackers." Some would call this entire DNC server hack an "insurance policy."

... ... ...

[Dec 28, 2017] On your surmise that Putin prefers Trump to Hillary and would thus have incentive to influence the election, I beg to differ. Putin is one smart statesman; he knows very well it makes no difference which candidates gets elected in US elections.

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... I accept your point that the Democrats and the Republicans are two sides of the same coin, but it's important to understand that Putin is deeply conservative and very risk averse. ..."
"... Hillary Clinton may be a threat to Russia but she knows the "rules" and is very predictable, while Trump doesn't know the rules and appears to act on a whim ..."
"... However, given the problems that Hillary Clinton had to overcome to get elected, backing her against Trump would be risky. So the highly risk averse Putin would logically stay out of the election entirely and all the claims of Russia hacking the election are fake news. ..."
"... As for the alleged media campaign, my response is "so what!". Western media, including state-owned media, interferes around the world all the time so complaining about Russian state-owned media doing the same is pure hypocrisy and should be ignored. ..."
Dec 28, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ghost Ship , Dec 27, 2017 10:17:37 AM | 92

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Dec 26, 2017 3:56:16 PM | 35
On your surmise that Putin prefers Trump to Hillary and would thus have incentive to influence the election, I beg to differ. Putin is one smart statesman; he knows very well it makes no difference which candidates gets elected in US elections.

I accept your point that the Democrats and the Republicans are two sides of the same coin, but it's important to understand that Putin is deeply conservative and very risk averse.

Hillary Clinton may be a threat to Russia but she knows the "rules" and is very predictable, while Trump doesn't know the rules and appears to act on a whim , so if Putin were to have interfered in the 2016 presidential election, logic would suggest that he would do so on Hillary Clinton's side. However, given the problems that Hillary Clinton had to overcome to get elected, backing her against Trump would be risky. So the highly risk averse Putin would logically stay out of the election entirely and all the claims of Russia hacking the election are fake news.

As for the alleged media campaign, my response is "so what!". Western media, including state-owned media, interferes around the world all the time so complaining about Russian state-owned media doing the same is pure hypocrisy and should be ignored.

[Dec 28, 2017] The Mueller investigation will delay and stall closing the investigation until the 2018 Congressional Elections, with the Dems presuming these elections will be won and Nunes removed

Notable quotes:
"... I sense The Duran and Zero Hedge are suspect for readers of this site, but however they may be seen as biased for Trump, they continually broadcast the sham the Mueller investigation has become. ..."
"... Why there is not more attention to the outright sham of the investigation is not clear to me. The Mueller case re election peddling rests entirely on the Steele dossier, now shown to be false. Instead, Mueller is going after unrelated matters in Trump re Russian business deals, or matters taking place AFTER the election, or stupidly investigating Jill Stein for attending a dinner with Putin present. Anything Russia is gobbled down by automatic demonizing as "them Russian bastards did it Oh for sure." Trump tweets and complains but apparently does nothing to create a new prosecutor going after Clinton, where the investigation should focus, possibly because Mueller is continually miscalculating and the near collapse of what the committee is doing. ..."
"... I don't comment on all this as a fan of Trump. Far be it. I'm very critical of Trump as essentially incompetent, an egotist, a foolhardy war-monger, and indeed I'll go with Tillerson's "fucking moron" assessment. But to concentrate simply on Trump, as moderate previous "liberals" are doing, is to ignore the other half of the problem in the corruption that is the current Washington. I want to see the farce of the Mueller investigation get more attention, and thank you b, for bringing it up here. ..."
Dec 28, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Sid2 , Dec 26, 2017 12:58:36 PM | 12

I sense The Duran and Zero Hedge are suspect for readers of this site, but however they may be seen as biased for Trump, they continually broadcast the sham the Mueller investigation has become.

Today Alexander Mercouris, to me one of the best reporters on this matter additional to b, indicates the Mueller investigation will delay and stall with this and that until the 2018 congressional elections, with the Dems presuming these elections will be won by Democrats, which will take the heat off Mueller's show by current Repubs led by Nunes--now shifting to investigate Clinton.

http://theduran.com/fbi-russiagate-strategy-stonewall-congressional-elections/

Why there is not more attention to the outright sham of the investigation is not clear to me. The Mueller case re election peddling rests entirely on the Steele dossier, now shown to be false. Instead, Mueller is going after unrelated matters in Trump re Russian business deals, or matters taking place AFTER the election, or stupidly investigating Jill Stein for attending a dinner with Putin present. Anything Russia is gobbled down by automatic demonizing as "them Russian bastards did it Oh for sure." Trump tweets and complains but apparently does nothing to create a new prosecutor going after Clinton, where the investigation should focus, possibly because Mueller is continually miscalculating and the near collapse of what the committee is doing.

I don't comment on all this as a fan of Trump. Far be it. I'm very critical of Trump as essentially incompetent, an egotist, a foolhardy war-monger, and indeed I'll go with Tillerson's "fucking moron" assessment. But to concentrate simply on Trump, as moderate previous "liberals" are doing, is to ignore the other half of the problem in the corruption that is the current Washington. I want to see the farce of the Mueller investigation get more attention, and thank you b, for bringing it up here.

[Dec 27, 2017] Russia hacked the election. Never happened. No proof, no indication, all fabricated out of whole cloth. BS. The FBI constructs a crime and plants it on people. Like a misstatement in Flynn s case

Accepting a meme is what propaganda is all about
The key reason of Trump victory was the crisis of neoliberalism in the USA -- voters rejected candidates from two major and discredited parties and elected outsider -- Trump is vain hopes that he can change the situation for the better (similar hope were during lection of Obama who also positioned himself as an outsider). So far it looks like he betrayed his voters becoming "Republican Obama" with fame "Make America Great Again" slogan (great for whom, for military industrial complex ?) instead of Obama fake slogan "change we can believe in".
Notable quotes:
"... The Mueller case re election peddling rests entirely on the Steele dossier, now shown to be false. ..."
"... Instead, Mueller is going after unrelated matters in Trump re Russian business deals, or matters taking place AFTER the election, or stupidly investigating Jill Stein for attending a dinner with Putin present ..."
"... Trump has claimed he has no intention of sacking Mueller suggests that those who expect major revelations of a conspiracy between Putin and Trump are going to be disappointed. ..."
"... Flynn's lie is like Russia hacked the election. Totally ether. Never happened. No proof, no indication, all fabricated out of whole cloth. BS. The FBI constructs a crime and plants it on people. A misstatement or in Flynn's case, his duty is to deny, is not a lie. Accepting a meme is what propaganda is all about: ..."
Dec 27, 2017 | moonofalabama.org

Ghost Ship | Dec 27, 2017 10:38:32 AM | 93

>>>> Sid2 | Dec 26, 2017 12:58:36 PM | 12

Why there is not more attention to the outright sham of the investigation is not clear to me. The Mueller case re election peddling rests entirely on the Steele dossier, now shown to be false.

Instead, Mueller is going after unrelated matters in Trump re Russian business deals, or matters taking place AFTER the election, or stupidly investigating Jill Stein for attending a dinner with Putin present.

Is the investigation a sham? Most of what you read about it is supposition coming from partisan reporters working for partisan newspapers. The actual facts are few and far between.

Manafort was clearly influence-peddling but for Turkey and a Ukrainian oligarch. Flynn clear did lie but his actions, requesting Russia delay a response to the expulsion of diplomat and that Russia block a resolution against Israel, appear not to be of themselves illegal. Trump Jr holding a meeting with a Maltese professor of international relations, a Russian criminal lawyer and a "niece" of Putin who wasn't in fact a niece of Putin was neither here nor there unless Trump Jr. lied to the FBI.

There is no evidence that the Steele dossier corroborates any of the above acts, but if the Obama regime really used it to get a FISA warrant then that needs to be investigated. Even the author of the dossier admits it might be 30% wrong.

As for Jill Stein, it's news to me that Mueller is investigating her when it seems to be some Democrats in the Senate who are doing so.

There have been a lot of "leaks" about the Mueller investigation but most reports suggest none of the leaks come from the investigation itself which seems to be watertight. It's a matter of waiting and seeing what comes out later and that Trump has claimed he has no intention of sacking Mueller suggests that those who expect major revelations of a conspiracy between Putin and Trump are going to be disappointed. And nobody can then say that they weren't warned.

Red Ryder , Dec 27, 2017 12:29:58 PM | 102

@93, Ghost Ship, "Flynn clear did lie . . . "

What was the lie? You have the "lie" and no one else has it. There is no lie. There wasn't even a lie to Pence. Flynn was NSC advisor, prior campaign and transition advisor on Nation Security. He was protecting the President's "moves" and doing the President's business.

Flynn's lie is like Russia hacked the election. Totally ether. Never happened. No proof, no indication, all fabricated out of whole cloth. BS. The FBI constructs a crime and plants it on people. A misstatement or in Flynn's case, his duty is to deny, is not a lie. Accepting a meme is what propaganda is all about:

It's all memes for people to accept as facts. Mike Flynn's job is to lie to everyone but his commander-in-chief. That's what he did. In other words, he told "the truth" which everyone should know could be a lie. Flynn was working for President-elect Trump as his top Intel man. Of course, he would lie. He spent 33 years in military Intel, rose to the top and told a million lies. Spies lie. Espionage is about truth and untruth.

Ghost Ship , Dec 27, 2017 1:01:00 PM | 106

>>>> Red Ryder | Dec 27, 2017 12:29:58 PM | 102

So why did Flynn plead guilty to lying to the FBI? If he was that accustomed to/experienced in lying he would have known what to do. Such as:

  1. Knowing that with the FBI involved you don't lie but that doesn't mean you have to help them;
  2. Making sure he had a criminal lawyer with him before answering any question;
  3. Pleading the fifth amendment.

[Dec 27, 2017] Trump's election was a chance for people to vent their anger and in this sense essential for the Neoliberal Establishment to blow off the steam

Notable quotes:
"... My hypothesis is that pundits like Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Napolitano are still provided with mainstream platforms because they are willing to weave Russia into the scandal. Even a site among the dozen linked by our courageous publisher – "Who What Why" – is pumping "RussiaGate" with an ongoing chain of infoturds accessible at the foot of every page. ..."
"... It's fast becoming a loyalty oath that one must take in order to be eligible for the privilege of public discourse, unless a publisher (e.g., RT) is willing to register as a "Kremlin agent." ..."
"... There are some who see Mr. Trump's election as a chance for people to vent, and thus needful to the Establishment. (Linh Dinh, one of the best writers published here, called it well in advance.) ..."
"... Of course, as with the fraudster Obama, very little of fundamental importance to those that own "our" government will change. ..."
Dec 27, 2017 | www.unz.com

Bro Methylene , December 27, 2017 at 12:54 pm GMT

In the "mainstream media" Mueller is always pictured as deep-thinking and contemplative. In fact he is a foaming-at-the-mouth, scheming, power-hungry, unscrupulous Boris Karloff lookalike who has been secretly working on the Clintons' behalf most of his adult life.

I hope this era of public credulity and secret government wickedness is coming to a close. But too many Americans still rely on TV for information. It is indeed tragic. One can only hope people aren't as stupid in other parts of the world.

anonymous , Disclaimer December 27, 2017 at 1:51 pm GMT
@exiled off mainstreet

See my #5, above.

My hypothesis is that pundits like Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Napolitano are still provided with mainstream platforms because they are willing to weave Russia into the scandal. Even a site among the dozen linked by our courageous publisher – "Who What Why" – is pumping "RussiaGate" with an ongoing chain of infoturds accessible at the foot of every page.

It's fast becoming a loyalty oath that one must take in order to be eligible for the privilege of public discourse, unless a publisher (e.g., RT) is willing to register as a "Kremlin agent."

Flitcraft , December 27, 2017 at 1:58 pm GMT
Dear Sir,
How do explain Comey's second statement to congress two weeks before election then. I believe you but it doesn't fit.?
anonymous , Disclaimer December 27, 2017 at 2:31 pm GMT
@Flitcraft

There are some who see Mr. Trump's election as a chance for people to vent, and thus needful to the Establishment. (Linh Dinh, one of the best writers published here, called it well in advance.)

Of course, as with the fraudster Obama, very little of fundamental importance to those that own "our" government will change.

Ludwig Watzal , Website December 27, 2017 at 2:59 pm GMT
Mr. Buchanan demonstrated convincingly that a liberal war-prone conspiracy is going on against President Trump. Nobody understands why Trump hasn't drained the FBI swamp of the Obama and Clinton mafia. The whole Mueller so-called investigation into nothing sucks out loud. Mueller is not an honest man like the liberals claim. He was in charge when 9/11 happened, and he covered it up. That's why Mueller could serve under Bush and Obama. He belongs to the crooked and criminal DC political establishment. The FBI is nothing than a criminal organization serving the corrupt power elite. I do feel bad for the ordinary FBI agents who face the music and to take the blame for their superior thugs. The crooked US political elites should stop teaching other peoples a lesson in democracy or ethical behavior. It makes me wanna puke.
George Weinbaum , December 27, 2017 at 3:56 pm GMT
What bunk! The "investigation" has always been intended to remove Trump from office. There is nothing the FBI or DOJ could say to me I would believe concerning the results of the "investigation". The FBI has become Beria's NKVD. As Beria said, "You show me the man and I'll show you the crime". What do you think is going on here?

"Are the investigators after the truth, or are they after Trump?", you ask. Where have you been for 11 months?
Comey's "preemption of Justice Department authority was astonishing", you write. What preemption? I am sure Obama himself told Comey to say that Hillary should not be indicted!

Wally , Website December 27, 2017 at 4:44 pm GMT
@Rich

He is at least doing some "straying'.

Under Trump's new tax plan, those from leftist, very high tax states will no longer be able to get the previous federal tax break because of their high state tax.

Leftists wanted a neo-Marxist state, OK, they will now have to pay for all of it.

bluedog , December 27, 2017 at 6:21 pm GMT
Perhaps not but we will still have to subsidize the poor red states so the welfare states will still continue to be a drain on the economy
Svigor , December 27, 2017 at 10:18 pm GMT

This connects the dots in a reasonable fashion on most of the major issues brought out by what this is: the Clinton crowd/deep state effort to "get" Trump. The only thing I would take exception with is to call the phony allegations of the GPS Steele dossier to be "Kremlin" based. They might have talked to Russians, but they were not acting on behalf of the Putin government when they talked. These individuals were doing no more than telling the Clinton researchers what they thought they would want to hear so that generous payments would be forthcoming.

This does seem likely, but it's not writ in stone.

Rather obvious Steele made it all up.

That, too. *Meets with Russian contact, holds out dossier* "Here, hand me this, so I can honestly say I got it from you."

He was in charge when 9/11 happened, and he covered it up.

He got the job like a week before 9/11, but yeah, he did cover up the gov't's bumbling. 100% swamp creature.

Trump needs to find a real cop inside the FBI, one without a law degree, and put him in charge.

Perhaps not but we will still have to subsidize the poor red states, because negroes and mestizos, Democrat constituencies, so the negroes and mestizos in welfare states will continue to be a drain on the economy

FIFY.

[Dec 27, 2017] Trump's election was a chance for people to vent thier anger and in sense essentail for the Neoliberal Establishment to blow off the steam. In this sense the Clinton crowd/deep state effort to "get" Trump might eventually backfire

Notable quotes:
"... My hypothesis is that pundits like Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Napolitano are still provided with mainstream platforms because they are willing to weave Russia into the scandal. Even a site among the dozen linked by our courageous publisher – "Who What Why" – is pumping "RussiaGate" with an ongoing chain of infoturds accessible at the foot of every page. ..."
"... It's fast becoming a loyalty oath that one must take in order to be eligible for the privilege of public discourse, unless a publisher (e.g., RT) is willing to register as a "Kremlin agent." ..."
"... There are some who see Mr. Trump's election as a chance for people to vent, and thus needful to the Establishment. (Linh Dinh, one of the best writers published here, called it well in advance.) ..."
"... Of course, as with the fraudster Obama, very little of fundamental importance to those that own "our" government will change. ..."
Dec 27, 2017 | www.unz.com

Bro Methylene , December 27, 2017 at 12:54 pm GMT

In the "mainstream media" Mueller is always pictured as deep-thinking and contemplative. In fact he is a foaming-at-the-mouth, scheming, power-hungry, unscrupulous Boris Karloff lookalike who has been secretly working on the Clintons' behalf most of his adult life.

I hope this era of public credulity and secret government wickedness is coming to a close. But too many Americans still rely on TV for information. It is indeed tragic. One can only hope people aren't as stupid in other parts of the world.

anonymous , Disclaimer December 27, 2017 at 1:51 pm GMT
@exiled off mainstreet

See my #5, above.

My hypothesis is that pundits like Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Napolitano are still provided with mainstream platforms because they are willing to weave Russia into the scandal. Even a site among the dozen linked by our courageous publisher – "Who What Why" – is pumping "RussiaGate" with an ongoing chain of infoturds accessible at the foot of every page.

It's fast becoming a loyalty oath that one must take in order to be eligible for the privilege of public discourse, unless a publisher (e.g., RT) is willing to register as a "Kremlin agent."

Flitcraft , December 27, 2017 at 1:58 pm GMT
Dear Sir,
How do explain Comey's second statement to congress two weeks before election then. I believe you but it doesn't fit.?
anonymous , Disclaimer December 27, 2017 at 2:31 pm GMT
@Flitcraft

There are some who see Mr. Trump's election as a chance for people to vent, and thus needful to the Establishment. (Linh Dinh, one of the best writers published here, called it well in advance.)

Of course, as with the fraudster Obama, very little of fundamental importance to those that own "our" government will change.

Ludwig Watzal , Website December 27, 2017 at 2:59 pm GMT
Mr. Buchanan demonstrated convincingly that a liberal war-prone conspiracy is going on against President Trump. Nobody understands why Trump hasn't drained the FBI swamp of the Obama and Clinton mafia. The whole Mueller so-called investigation into nothing sucks out loud. Mueller is not an honest man like the liberals claim. He was in charge when 9/11 happened, and he covered it up. That's why Mueller could serve under Bush and Obama. He belongs to the crooked and criminal DC political establishment. The FBI is nothing than a criminal organization serving the corrupt power elite. I do feel bad for the ordinary FBI agents who face the music and to take the blame for their superior thugs. The crooked US political elites should stop teaching other peoples a lesson in democracy or ethical behavior. It makes me wanna puke.
George Weinbaum , December 27, 2017 at 3:56 pm GMT
What bunk! The "investigation" has always been intended to remove Trump from office. There is nothing the FBI or DOJ could say to me I would believe concerning the results of the "investigation". The FBI has become Beria's NKVD. As Beria said, "You show me the man and I'll show you the crime". What do you think is going on here?

"Are the investigators after the truth, or are they after Trump?", you ask. Where have you been for 11 months?
Comey's "preemption of Justice Department authority was astonishing", you write. What preemption? I am sure Obama himself told Comey to say that Hillary should not be indicted!

Wally , Website December 27, 2017 at 4:44 pm GMT
@Rich

He is at least doing some "straying'.

Under Trump's new tax plan, those from leftist, very high tax states will no longer be able to get the previous federal tax break because of their high state tax.

Leftists wanted a neo-Marxist state, OK, they will now have to pay for all of it.

bluedog , December 27, 2017 at 6:21 pm GMT
Perhaps not but we will still have to subsidize the poor red states so the welfare states will still continue to be a drain on the economy
Svigor , December 27, 2017 at 10:18 pm GMT

This connects the dots in a reasonable fashion on most of the major issues brought out by what this is: the Clinton crowd/deep state effort to "get" Trump. The only thing I would take exception with is to call the phony allegations of the GPS Steele dossier to be "Kremlin" based. They might have talked to Russians, but they were not acting on behalf of the Putin government when they talked. These individuals were doing no more than telling the Clinton researchers what they thought they would want to hear so that generous payments would be forthcoming.

This does seem likely, but it's not writ in stone.

Rather obvious Steele made it all up.

That, too. *Meets with Russian contact, holds out dossier* "Here, hand me this, so I can honestly say I got it from you."

He was in charge when 9/11 happened, and he covered it up.

He got the job like a week before 9/11, but yeah, he did cover up the gov't's bumbling. 100% swamp creature.

Trump needs to find a real cop inside the FBI, one without a law degree, and put him in charge.

Perhaps not but we will still have to subsidize the poor red states, because negroes and mestizos, Democrat constituencies, so the negroes and mestizos in welfare states will continue to be a drain on the economy

FIFY.

[Dec 25, 2017] The Israel-gate Side of Russia-gate Consortiumnews

Notable quotes:
"... In this case, what Flynn and Kushner were doing was going directly against US foreign policy, because Obama wanted the resolution to pass; He just didn't want to vote for it because that would cross the Israel lobby in the United States. The US finally ended up abstaining on the resolution and it passed 14-0. ..."
"... But before that happened, Flynn went to the Russians and to Egypt, both members of the Security Council, and tried to get the resolution delayed. But all of Israel's machinations to derail this resolution failed and that is what Mueller was investigating, the intervention and disruption of American foreign policy by private citizens who had no official role. ..."
"... While I think Bibi is an idiot, I also think the Logan Act is overinvoked, overstated, probably of dubious legal value and also of dubious constitutional value. ..."
"... In short, especially because Trump had been elected, though not yet inaugurated, I think he is not at all guilty of a Logan Act violation. This is nothing close to Spiro Agnew calling Anna Chenault from the airplane in August 1968. ..."
"... Probably true, although evidence of extreme collusion with Israel eliminates any case against Russia, with whom we have far more reasons for amity. Bringing out the Israel collusion greatly improves public understanding of political corruption. Perhaps it will awaken some to the Agnew-Chennault betrayal of the people of the US. ..."
"... It's ironic that Russia-gate is turning out to be Israel's effort to distract attention from its complete control over the Democratic party in 2016. From Israeli billionaires behind the scenes to Debbie Wasserman-Schultz at the helm. ..."
"... "Whether we like it or not, the former and current administration view Russia is as an enemy state." So that is how it works, the White House says it is an enemy state and therefore it is. The so called declaration is the hammer used for trying to make contact with Russia a criminal offense. We are not at war with Russia although we see our leaders doing their best to provoke Russia into one. ..."
"... The Israel connection disclosed by the malpracticer hack Mueller in the recent Flynn-flam just made Trump bullet-proof (so to speak). ..."
"... So Mueller caught Kushner and Flynn red-handed, sabotaging the Obama administration? What of it? He can't use that evidence, because it would inculpate the Zionist neocons that are orchestrating his farcical, Stalinist witchhunt. And Mueller, being an efficient terminator bot, knows that his target is Russia, not Israel. ..."
"... So Mueller will just have to continue swamp-fishing for potential perjurers ahem witnesses, for the upcoming show trials (to further inflame public opinion against Russia and Russia sympathizers). And continue he will, because (as we all know from Schwarzenegger's flicks), the only way to stop the terminator is to terminate him/it first. ..."
"... Trump and Kushner have nothing to worry about, even if a smoking gun is found that proves their collusion with Israel. That's because the entire political and media establishment will simply ignore the Israeli connection. ..."
"... Journalists and politicians will even continue to present Mike Flynn's contacts as evidence of collusion with Russia. They'll keep on repeating that "Flynn lied about his phone call to the Russian ambassador". But there will be no mention of the fact that the purpose of this contact was to support Israel and not any alleged Russian interference. ..."
"... I think you have it right Brendan. The MSM, Intelligence Community, and Mueller would never go down any path that popularized undue Israeli influence on US foreign policy. "Nothing to see here folks, move along." ..."
"... The Nice Zionists responsible for the thefts and murders for the past 69 years along with the "Jewish Community" in the rest of the world will resolve the matter so as to be fair to both parties. This is mind-boggling fantasy. ..."
"... FFS, Netanyahu aired a political commercial in Florida for Romney saying vote for this guy (against Obama)! I mean, it doesn't get any more overtly manipulative than that. Period. End of story. ..."
"... God, I hate to go all "Israel controls the media" but there it is. Not even a discussion. Just a fact. ..."
"... I also have to point out that he "fist pumped" Hillary Clinton at Mohammed Ali's eulogy. If he's as astute as he purports to be, he has to know that Hillary would have invaded Syria and killed a few hundred thousand more Syrians for the simple act of defiantly preserving their country. By almost any read of Ali's history, he would have been adamantly ("killing brown people") against that. But there was Silverstein using the platform to promote, arguably, perpetual war. ..."
"... Yeah I found a couple of Silverstein's statements to be closer to neocon propaganda than reality: "Because this is Israel and because we have a conflicted relationship with the Israel lobby . . ." "Instead of going directly to the Obama administration, with which they had terrible relations, they went to Trump instead." My impression was that the whole "terrible relationship between Obama and Netanyahu" was manufactured by the Israel lobby to bully Obama. However these are small blips within an otherwise solid critique of the Israel lobby's influence. ..."
Dec 25, 2017 | consortiumnews.com

The Israel-gate Side of Russia-gate December 23, 2017

While unproven claims of Russian meddling in U.S. politics have whipped Official Washington into a frenzy, much less attention has been paid to real evidence of Israeli interference in U.S. politics, as Dennis J Bernstein describes.

By Dennis J Bernstein

In investigating Russia's alleged meddling in U.S. politics, special prosecutor Robert Mueller uncovered evidence that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pressured the Trump transition team to undermine President Obama's plans to permit the United Nations to censure Israel over its illegal settlement building on the Palestinian West Bank, a discovery referenced in the plea deal with President Trump's first National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

President Donald J. Trump and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel at the United Nations General Assembly (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

At Netanyahu's behest, Flynn and President Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner reportedly took the lead in the lobbying to derail the U.N. resolution, which Flynn discussed in a phone call with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak (in which the Russian diplomat rebuffed Flynn's appeal to block the resolution).

I spoke on Dec, 18 with independent journalist and blogger Richard Silverstein, who writes on national security and other issues for a number of blogs at Tikun Olam .

Dennis Bernstein: A part of Michael Flynn's plea had to do with some actions he took before coming to power regarding Israel and the United Nations. Please explain.

Richard Silverstein:

The Obama administration was negotiating in the [UN] Security Council just before he left office about a resolution that would condemn Israeli settlements. Obviously, the Israeli government did not want this resolution to be passed. Instead of going directly to the Obama administration, with which they had terrible relations, they went to Trump instead. They approached Michael Flynn and Jared Kushner became involved in this. While they were in the transition and before having any official capacity, they negotiated with various members of the Security Council to try to quash the settlement resolution.

One of the issues here which is little known is the Logan Act, which was passed at the foundation of our republic and was designed to prevent private citizens from usurping the foreign policy prerogatives of the executive. It criminalized any private citizen who attempted to negotiate with an enemy country over any foreign policy issue.

In this case, what Flynn and Kushner were doing was going directly against US foreign policy, because Obama wanted the resolution to pass; He just didn't want to vote for it because that would cross the Israel lobby in the United States. The US finally ended up abstaining on the resolution and it passed 14-0.

But before that happened, Flynn went to the Russians and to Egypt, both members of the Security Council, and tried to get the resolution delayed. But all of Israel's machinations to derail this resolution failed and that is what Mueller was investigating, the intervention and disruption of American foreign policy by private citizens who had no official role.

This speaks to the power of the Israel lobby and of Israel itself to disrupt our foreign policy. Very few people have ever been charged with committing an illegal act by advocating on behalf of Israel. That is one of the reasons why this is such an important development. Until now, the lobby has really ruled supreme on the issue of Israel and Palestine in US foreign policy. Now it is possible that a private citizen will actually be made to pay a price for that.

This is an important development because the lobby till now has run roughshod over our foreign policy in this area and this may act as a restraining order against blatant disruption of US foreign policy by people like this.

Bernstein: So this information is a part of Michael Flynn's plea. Anyone studying this would learn something about Michael Flynn and it would be part of the prosecution's investigation.

Silverstein:

That's absolutely right. One thing to note here is that it is reporters who have raised the issue of the Logan Act, not Mueller or Flynn's people or anyone in the Trump administration. But I do think that Logan is a very important part of this plea deal, even if it is not mentioned explicitly.

Bernstein: If the special prosecutor had smoking-gun information that the Trump administration colluded with Russia, in the way they colluded with Israel before coming to power, this would be a huge revelation. But it is definitely collusion when it comes to Israel.

Silverstein: Absolutely. If this were Russia, it would be on the front page of every major newspaper in the United States and the leading story on the TV news. Because this is Israel and because we have a conflicted relationship with the Israel lobby and they have so much influence on US policy concerning Israel, it has managed to stay on the back burner. Only two or three media outlets besides mine have raised this issue of Logan and collusion. Kushner and Flynn may be the first American citizens charged under the Logan Act for interfering on behalf of Israel in our foreign policy. This is a huge issue and it has hardly been raised at all.

Bernstein: As you know, Rachel Maddow of MSNBC has made a career out of investigating the Russia-gate charges. She says that she has read all this material carefully, so she must have read about Flynn and Israel, but I haven't heard her on this issue at all.

Silverstein:

Even progressive journalists, who you'd think would be going after this with a vengeance, are frightened off by the fact the lobby really bites back. So, aside from outlets like the Intercept and the Electronic Intifada, there is a lot of hesitation about going after the Israel lobby. People are afraid because they know that there is a high price to be paid. It goes from being purely journalism to being a personal and political vendetta when they get you in their sights. In fact, one of the reasons I feel my blog is so important is that what I do is challenge Israeli policy and Israeli intervention in places where it doesn't belong.

Bernstein: Jared Kushner is the point man for the Trump administration on Israel. He has talked about having a "vision for peace." Do you think it is a problem that this is someone with a long, close relationship with the prime minister of Israel and, in fact, runs a foundation that invests in the building of illegal Israeli settlements? Might this be problematic?

Silverstein:

It is quite nefarious, actually. When Jared Kushner was a teenager, Netanyahu used to stay at the Kushner family home when he visited the United States. This relationship with one of the most extreme right political figures in Israel goes back decades. And it is not just Kushner himself, but all the administration personnel dealing with these so-called peace negotiations, including Jason Greenblatt and David Friedman, the ambassador. These are all orthodox Jews who tend to have very nationalist views when it comes to Israel. They all support settlements financially through foundations. These are not honest brokers.

We could talk at length about the history of US personnel who have been negotiators for Middle East peace. All of them have been favorable to Israel and answerable to the Israel lobby, including Dennis Ross and Makovsky, who served in the last administration. These people are dyed-in-the-wool ultra-nationalist supporters of [Israeli] settlements. They have no business playing any role in negotiating a peace deal.

My prediction all along has been that these peace negotiations will come to naught, even though they seem to have bought the cooperation of Saudi Arabia, which is something new in the process. The Palestinians can never accept a deal that has been negotiated by Kushner and company because it will be far too favorable to Israel and it will totally neglect the interests of the Palestinians.

Bernstein: It has been revealed that Kushner supports the building of settlements in the West Bank. Most people don't understand the politics of what is going on there, but it appears to be part of an ethnic cleansing.

Silverstein:

The settlements have always been a violation of international law, ever since Israel conquered the West Bank in 1967. The Geneva Conventions direct an occupying power to withdraw from territory that was not its own. In 1967 Israel invaded Arab states and conquered the West Bank and Gaza but this has never been recognized or accepted by any nation until now.

The fact that Kushner and his family are intimately involved in supporting settlements–as are David Friedman and Jason Greenblatt–is completely outrageous. No member of any previous US administration would have been allowed to participate with these kinds of financial investments in support of settlements. Of course, Trump doesn't understand the concept of conflict of interest because he is heavily involved in such conflicts himself. But no party in the Middle East except Israel is going to consider the US an honest broker and acceptable as a mediator.

When they announce this deal next January, no one in the Arab World is going to accept it, with the possible exception of Saudi Arabia because they have other fish to fry in terms of Iran. The next three years are going to be interesting, supposing Trump lasts out his term. My prediction is that the peace plan will fail and that it will lead to greater violence in the Middle East. It will not simply lead to a vacuum, it will lead to a deterioration in conditions there.

Bernstein: The Trump transition team was actually approached directly by the Israeli government to try to intercede at the United Nations.

Silverstein:

I'm assuming it was Netanyahu who went directly to Kushner and Trump. Now, we haven't yet found out that Trump directly knew about this but it is very hard to believe that Trump didn't endorse this. Now that we know that Mueller has access to all of the emails of the transition team, there is little doubt that they have been able to find their smoking gun. Flynn's plea meant that they basically had him dead to rights. It remains to be seen what will happen with Kushner but I would think that this would play some role in either the prosecution of Kushner or some plea deal.

Bernstein: The other big story, of course, is the decision by the Trump administration to move the US embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem. Was there any pre-election collusion in that regard and what are the implications?

Silverstein:

Well, it's a terrible decision which goes against forty to fifty years of US foreign policy. It also breaches all international understanding. All of our allies in the European Union and elsewhere are aghast at this development. There is now a campaign in the United Nations Security Council to pass a resolution condemning the announcement, which we will veto, but the next step will be to go to the General Assembly, where such a resolution will pass easily.

The question is how much anger, violence and disruption this is going to cause around the world, especially in the Arab and Muslim world. This is a slow-burning fuse. It is not going to explode right now. The issue of Jerusalem is so vital that this is not something that is simply going to go away. This is going to be a festering sore in the Muslim world and among Palestinians. We have already seen attacks on Israeli soldiers and citizens and there will be many more.

As to collusion in all of this, since Trump always said during the campaign that this was what he was going to do, it might be difficult to treat this in the same way as the UN resolution. The UN resolution was never on anybody's radar and nobody knew the role that Trump was playing behind the scenes with that–as opposed to Trump saying right from the get-go that Jerusalem was going to be recognized as the capital of Jerusalem.

By doing that, they have completely abrogated any Palestinian interest in Jerusalem. This is a catastrophic decision that really excludes the United States from being an honest broker here and shows our true colors in terms of how pro-Israel we are.

Dennis J Bernstein is a host of "Flashpoints" on the Pacifica radio network and the author of Special Ed: Voices from a Hidden Classroom . You can access the audio archives at www.flashpoints.net .

Drew Hunkins , December 23, 2017 at 5:37 pm

As most regular readers of CN already know, some dynamite books on the inordinate amount of influence pro-Israel zealots have on Washington:

1.) 'The Host and the Parasite' by Greg Felton
2.) 'Power of Israel in the United States' by James Petras
3.) 'They Dare to Speak Out' by Paul Findley
4.) 'The Israel Lobby' by Mearsheimer and Walt
5.) 'Zionism, Militarism and the Decline of U.S. Power' by James Petras

I suggest that anyone relatively knew to this neglected topic peruse a few of the aforementioned titles. An inevitable backlash by the citizens of the United States is eventually forthcoming against the Zionist Power Configuration. It's crucial that this impending backlash remain democratic, non-violent, eschews anti-Semitism, and travels in a progressive in direction.

Annie , December 23, 2017 at 5:47 pm

Which one would you suggest? I already read "The Israel Lobby."

Sam F , December 23, 2017 at 8:38 pm

Findley and Mearsheimer are certainly worthwhile. I will look for Petras.

Larry Larsen , December 24, 2017 at 6:38 pm

If you haven't already read them, the end/footnotes in "The Israel Lobby" are more illuminating.

SocraticGadfly , December 23, 2017 at 6:10 pm

That influence is also shown, of course, by the fact that Obama waited until the midnight hours of his tenure and after the 2016 election to even start working on this resolution.

SocraticGadfly , December 23, 2017 at 6:05 pm

While I think Bibi is an idiot, I also think the Logan Act is overinvoked, overstated, probably of dubious legal value and also of dubious constitutional value.

In short, especially because Trump had been elected, though not yet inaugurated, I think he is not at all guilty of a Logan Act violation. This is nothing close to Spiro Agnew calling Anna Chenault from the airplane in August 1968.

Sam F , December 23, 2017 at 8:41 pm

Probably true, although evidence of extreme collusion with Israel eliminates any case against Russia, with whom we have far more reasons for amity. Bringing out the Israel collusion greatly improves public understanding of political corruption. Perhaps it will awaken some to the Agnew-Chennault betrayal of the people of the US.

JWalters , December 24, 2017 at 3:32 am

It's ironic that Russia-gate is turning out to be Israel's effort to distract attention from its complete control over the Democratic party in 2016. From Israeli billionaires behind the scenes to Debbie Wasserman-Schultz at the helm.

The leaked emails showed the corruption plainly, and based on the ACTUAL evidence (recorded download time), most likely came from a highly disgruntled insider. The picture was starting to spill into public view. I'd estimate the real huge worry was that if this stuff came out, it could bring out other Israeli secrets, like their involvement in 9/11. That would mean actual jail time. Might be hard to buy your way out of that no matter how much money you have.

Annie , December 23, 2017 at 10:48 pm

The Logan act states that anyone who negotiates with an enemy of the US, and Israel is not defined as an enemy.

Annie , December 23, 2017 at 6:59 pm

The Logan act would not apply here, although I wish it would. I don't think anyone has been convicted based on this act, and they were part of a transition team not to mention the Logan act clearly states a private citizen who attempts to negotiate with an enemy state, and that certainly doesn't apply to Israel. In this administration their bias is so blatant that they can install Kushner as an honest broker in the Israeli-Palestine peace process while his family has a close relationship with Netanyahu, and he runs a foundation that invests in the building of illegal settlements which goes against the Geneva conventions. Hopefully Trump's blatant siding with Israel will receive a lot of backlash as did his plan to make Jerusalem the capital of Israel.

I also found that so called progressive internet sites don't cover this the way they should.

Al Pinto , December 24, 2017 at 9:16 am

@Annie

"The Logan act would not apply here, although I wish it would."

You and me both .

From the point of starting to read this article, it has been in my mind that the Logan act would not apply here. After reading most of the comments, it became clear that not many people viewed this as such. Yes, Joe Tedesky did as well

The UN is the "clearing house" for international politics, where countries freely contact each other's for getting support for their cause behind the scene. The support sought after could be voting for or against the resolution on hand. At times, as Israel did, countries reach out to perceived enemies as well, if they could not secure sufficient support for their cause. This is the normal activity of the UN diplomacy.

Knowing that the outgoing administration would not support its cause, Israel reached out to the incoming administration to delay the vote on the UN resolution. I fail to see anything wrong with Israel's action even in this case; Israel is not an enemy state to the US. As such, there has been no violation of any acts by the incoming administration, even if they tried to secure veto vote for Israel. I do not like it, but no action by Mueller in this case is correct.

People, just like the article in itself, implying that the Logan Act applies in this case are just plain wrong. Not just wrong, but their anti-Israel bias is in plain view.

Whether we like it or not, the former and current administration view Russia is as an enemy state. Even then, Russia contacting the incoming administration is not a violation of the Logan Act. That is just normal diplomacy in the background between countries. What would be a violation is that the contacted official acted on the behalf of Russia and tried to influence the outgoing administration's decision. That is what the Mueller investigation tries to prove hopelessly

Herman , December 24, 2017 at 10:54 am

"Whether we like it or not, the former and current administration view Russia is as an enemy state." So that is how it works, the White House says it is an enemy state and therefore it is. The so called declaration is the hammer used for trying to make contact with Russia a criminal offense. We are not at war with Russia although we see our leaders doing their best to provoke Russia into one.

Annie , December 24, 2017 at 1:55 pm

Thanks for your reply. When I read the article and it referenced the Logan Act, which I am familiar with in that I've read about it before, I was surprised that Bernstein and Silverstein even brought it up because it so obviously does not apply in this case, since Israel is not considered an enemy state. Many have even referenced it as flimsy when it comes to convictions against those in Trump's transition team who had contacts with Russia. No one has ever been convicted under the Logan Act.

Larry Larsen , December 24, 2017 at 6:41 pm

The Logan Act either should apply equally, or not apply at all. This "Russia-gate" hype seems to apply it selectively.

mrtmbrnmn , December 23, 2017 at 7:36 pm

You guys are blinded by the light. The Israel connection disclosed by the malpracticer hack Mueller in the recent Flynn-flam just made Trump bullet-proof (so to speak).

There is no doubt that Trump is Bibi's and the Saudi's ventriloquist dummy and Jared has been an Israel agent of influence since he was 12.

But half the Dementedcrat Sore Loser Brigade will withdraw from the field of battle (not to mention most of the GOP living dead too) if publically and noisily tying Israel to Trump's tail becomes the only route to his removal. Which it would have to be, as there is no there there regarding the yearlong trumped-up PutinPutinPutin waterboarding of Trump.

Immediately (if not sooner) the mighty (pro-Israel) Donor Bank of Singer (Paul), Saban (Haim), Sachs (Goldman) & Adelson (Sheldon), would change their passwords and leave these politicians/beggars with empty begging bowls. End of $ordid $tory.

alley cat , December 23, 2017 at 7:45 pm

So Mueller caught Kushner and Flynn red-handed, sabotaging the Obama administration? What of it? He can't use that evidence, because it would inculpate the Zionist neocons that are orchestrating his farcical, Stalinist witchhunt. And Mueller, being an efficient terminator bot, knows that his target is Russia, not Israel.

Mueller can use that evidence of sabotage and/or obstruction of justice to try to coerce false confessions from Kushner and Flynn. But what are the chances of that, barring short stayovers for them at some CIA black site?

So Mueller will just have to continue swamp-fishing for potential perjurers ahem witnesses, for the upcoming show trials (to further inflame public opinion against Russia and Russia sympathizers). And continue he will, because (as we all know from Schwarzenegger's flicks), the only way to stop the terminator is to terminate him/it first.

Leslie F. , December 23, 2017 at 8:28 pm

He used it, along with other info, to turn flip Flynn and possibly can use it the same way again Kusher. Not all evidence has end up in court to be useful.

JWalters , December 23, 2017 at 8:40 pm

This is an extremely important story, excellently reported. All the main "facts" Americans think they know about Israel are, amazingly, flat-out lies.

1. Israel was NOT victimized by powerful Arab armies. Israel overpowered and victimized a defenseless, civilian Arab population. Military analysts knew the Arab armies were in poor shape and would not be able to resist the zionist army.

2. Muslim "citizens" of Israel do NOT have all the same rights as Jews.

3. Israelis are NOT under threat from the indigineous Palestinians, but Palestinians are under constant threats of theft and death from the Israelis.

4. Israel does NOT share America's most fundamental values, which rest on the principle of equal human rights for all.

Maintaining such a blanket of major lies for decades requires immense power. And this power would have to be exercised "under the radar" to be effective. That requires even more power. Both Congress and the press have to be controlled. How much power does it take to turn "Progressive Rachel" into "Tel Aviv Rachel"? To turn "It Takes a Village" Hillary into "Slaughter a Village" Hillary? It takes immense power AND ruthlessness.

War profiteers have exactly this combination of immense war profits and the ruthlessness to victimize millions of people.
"War Profiteers and the Roots of the War on Terror"
http://warprofiteerstory.blogspot.com

Vast war profits easily afford to buy the mainstream media. And controlling campaign contributions for members of Congress is amazingly cheap in the big picture. Such a squalid sale of souls.

And when simple bribery is not enough, they ruin a person's life through blackmail or false character assassination. And if those don't work they use death threats, including to family members, and finally murder. Their ruthlessness is unrestrained. John Perkins has described these tactics in "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man".

For readers who haven't seen it, here is an excellent riff on the absurdly overwhelming evidence for Israel's influence compared to that of Russia, at a highly professional news and analysis website run by Jewish anti-Zionists.
"Let's talk about Russian influence"
http://mondoweiss.net/2016/08/about-russian-influence/

mike k , December 23, 2017 at 8:44 pm

Hitler and Mussolini, Trump and Netanyahoo – matches made in Hell. These characters are so obviously, blatantly evil that it is deeply disturbing that people fail to see that, and instead go to great lengths to find some complicated flaws in these monsters.

mike k , December 23, 2017 at 8:49 pm

Keep it simple folks. No need for complex analyses. Just remember that these characters as simply as evil as it gets, and proceed from there. These asinine shows that portray mobsters as complex human beings are dangerously deluding. If you want to be victimized by these types, this kind of overthinking is just the way to go.

Sam F , December 23, 2017 at 9:00 pm

There is a modern theory of fiction that insists upon the portrayal of inconsistency in characters, both among the good guys and the bad guys. It is useful to show how those who do wrongs have made specific kinds of errors that make them abnormal, and that those who do right are not perfect but nonetheless did the right thing. Instead it is used by commercial writers to argue that the good are really bad, and the bad are really good, which is of course the philosophy of oligarchy-controlled mass publishers.

Sam F , December 23, 2017 at 8:54 pm

A very important article by Dennis Bernstein, and it is very appropriate that non-zionist Jews are active against the extreme zionist corruption of our federal government. I am sure that they are reviled by the zionists for interfering with the false denunciations of racism against the opponents of zionism. Indeed critics face a very nearly totalitarian power of zionism, which in league with MIC/WallSt opportunism has displaced democracy altogether in the US.

backwardsevolution , December 23, 2017 at 9:18 pm

A nice little set-up by the Obama administration. Perhaps it was entrapment? Who set it up? Flynn and Kushner should have known better to fall for it. So at the end of his Presidency, Obama suddenly gets balls and wants to slap down Israel? Yeah, right.

Nice to have leverage over people, though, isn't it? If you're lucky and play your cards right, you might even be lucky enough to land an impeachment.

Of course, I'm just being cynical. No one would want to overturn democracy, would they?

Certainly people like Comey, Brenner, Clinton, Clapper, Mueller, Rosenstein wouldn't want that, would they?

Joe Tedesky , December 23, 2017 at 10:33 pm

I just can't see any special prosecutor investigating Israel-Gate. Between what the Zionist donors donate to these creepy politicians, too what goods they have on these same mischievous politicians, I just can't see any investigation into Israel's collusion with the Trump Administration going anywhere. Netanyahu isn't Putin, and Russia isn't Israel. Plus, Israel is considered a U.S. ally, while Russia is being marked as a Washington rival. Sorry, this news regarding Israel isn't going to be ranted on about for the next 18 months, like the MSM has done with Russia, because our dear old Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, or so they tell us. So, don't get your hopes up.

JWalters , December 24, 2017 at 3:33 am

It's true the Israelis have America's politicians by the ears and the balls. But as this story gets better known, politicians will start getting questions at their town meetings. Increasingly the politicians will gag on what Israel is force-feeding them, until finally they reach a critical mass of vomit in Congress.

Joe Tedesky , December 24, 2017 at 11:12 am

I hope you are right JWalters. Although relying on a Zionist controlled MSM doesn't give hope for the news getting out properly. Again I hope you are right JWalters. Joe

Jeff Blankfort , December 24, 2017 at 12:18 am

Actually, Netanyahu was so desperate to have the resolution pulled and not voted on that he reached out to any country that might help him after the foreign minister of New Zealand, one of its co-sponsors refused to pull the plug after a testy phone exchange with the Israeli PM ending up threatening an Israeli boycott oturnef the KIwis.

He then turned to his buddy, Vladimir Putin, who owed him a favor for having Israel's UN delegate absent himself for the UNGA vote on sanctioning Russia after its annexation of Crimea.

Putin then called Russia's UN Ambassador, Vitaly Churkin, since deceased, and asked him to get the other UNSC ambassadors to postpone the vote until Trump took over the White House but the other ambassadors weren't buying it. Given Russia's historic public position regarding the settlements, Churkin had no choice to vote Yes with the others.

This story was reported in detail in the Israeli press but blacked out in the US which, due to Zionist influence on the media, does not want the American public to know about the close ties between Putin and Netanyahu which has led to the Israeli PM making five state visits there in the last year and a half.

Had Clinton won the White House we can assume that there would have been no US veto. That Netanyahu apparently knew in advance that the US planned to veto the resolution was, I suspect, leaked to the Israelis by US delegate Samantha Power, who was clearly unhappy at having to abstain.

Abe , December 24, 2017 at 12:39 am

The Israeli Prime Minister made five state visits to Russia in the last year and a half to make sure the Russians don't accidentally on purpose blast Israeli warplanes from the sky over Syria (like they oughtta). Putin tries not to snicker when Netanyahu bloviates ad nauseum about the purported "threat" posed by Iran.

argos , December 24, 2017 at 7:00 am

He thinks Putin is a RATS ASS like the yankee government

JWalters , December 24, 2017 at 3:34 am

"This story was reported in detail in the Israeli press but blacked out in the US"

We've just had a whole cluster of big stories involving Israel that have all been essentially blacked out in the US press. e.g.
"Dionne and Shields ignore the Adelson in the room"
http://mondoweiss.net/2017/12/jerusalem-israels-capital

This is not due to chance. There is no doubt that the US mainstream media is wholly controlled by the Israelis.

alley cat , December 24, 2017 at 4:49 am

"He [Netanyahu] then turned to his buddy, Vladimir Putin "

Jeff, that characterization of Putin and Netanyahu's relationship makes no sense, since the Russians have consistently opposed Zionism and Putin has been no exception, having spoiled Zionist plans for the destruction of Syria.

"Had Clinton won the White House we can assume that there would have been no US veto."

Not sure where you're going with that, since the US vote was up to Obama, who wanted to get some payback for all of Bibi's efforts to sabotage Obama's treaty with Iran.

For the record, Zionism has had no more rabid supporter than the Dragon Lady. If we're going to make assumptions, we could start by assuming that if she had won the White House we'd all be dead by now, thanks to her obsession (at the instigation of her Zionist/neocon sponsors) with declaring no-fly zones in Syria.

Brendan , December 24, 2017 at 6:18 am

Trump and Kushner have nothing to worry about, even if a smoking gun is found that proves their collusion with Israel. That's because the entire political and media establishment will simply ignore the Israeli connection.

Journalists and politicians will even continue to present Mike Flynn's contacts as evidence of collusion with Russia. They'll keep on repeating that "Flynn lied about his phone call to the Russian ambassador". But there will be no mention of the fact that the purpose of this contact was to support Israel and not any alleged Russian interference.

Skip Scott , December 24, 2017 at 7:59 am

I think you have it right Brendan. The MSM, Intelligence Community, and Mueller would never go down any path that popularized undue Israeli influence on US foreign policy. "Nothing to see here folks, move along."

argos , December 24, 2017 at 6:57 am

The zionist will stop at nothing to control the middle east with American taxpayers money/military equiptment its a win win for the zionist they control America lock stock and barrel a pity though it is a great country to be led by a jewish entity.

Herman , December 24, 2017 at 10:47 am

What will Israel-Palestine look like twenty years from now? Will it remain an apartheid regime, a regime without any Palestinians, or something different. The Trump decision, which the world rejects, brings the issue of "final" settlement to the fore. In a way we can go back to the thirties and the British Mandate. Jewish were fleeing Europe, many coming to Palestine. The British, on behalf of the Zionists, were delaying declaring Palestine a state with control of its own affairs. Seeing the mass immigration and chafing at British foot dragging, the Arabs rebelled, What happened then was that the British, responding to numerous pressures notably war with Germany, acted by granting independence and granting Palestine control of its borders.

With American pressure and the mass exodus of Jews from Europe, Jews defied the British resulting in Jewish resistance. What followed then was a UN plan to divide the land with a Jerusalem an international city administered by the UN. The Arabs rebelled and lost much of what the UN plan provided and Jerusalem as an international city was scrapped.

Will there be a second serious attempt to settle the issue of the land and the status of Jerusalem? Will there be a serious move toward a single state? How will the matter of Jerusalem be resolved. The two state solution has always been a fantasy and acquiescence of Palestinians to engage in this charade exposes their leaders to charges of posturing for perks. Imagined options could go on and on but will there be serious options placed before the world community or will the boots on the ground Israeli policies continue?

As I have commented before, it will most probably be the Jewish community in Israel and the world that shapes the future and if the matter is to be resolved that is fair to both parties, it will be they that starts the ball rolling.

Zachary Smith , December 24, 2017 at 1:34 pm

As I have commented before, it will most probably be the Jewish community in Israel and the world that shapes the future and if the matter is to be resolved that is fair to both parties, it will be they that starts the ball rolling.

The Nice Zionists responsible for the thefts and murders for the past 69 years along with the "Jewish Community" in the rest of the world will resolve the matter so as to be fair to both parties. This is mind-boggling fantasy.

Larry Larsen , December 24, 2017 at 5:56 pm

Truly mind-boggling. Ahistorical, and as you say, fantasy.

Larry Larsen , December 24, 2017 at 5:48 pm

FFS, Netanyahu aired a political commercial in Florida for Romney saying vote for this guy (against Obama)! I mean, it doesn't get any more overtly manipulative than that. Period. End of story.

$50K of Facebook ads about puppies pales in comparison to that blatant, prima facia, public manipulation. God, I hate to go all "Israel controls the media" but there it is. Not even a discussion. Just a fact.

Larry Larsen , December 24, 2017 at 6:11 pm

Just for the record, Richard Silverstein blocked me on Twitter because I pointed out that he slammed someone who was suggesting that the Assad government was fighting for its (Syria's) life by fighting terrorists. Actually, more specifically, because of that he read my "Free Palestine" bio on Twitter and called me a Hamas supporter (no Hamas mentioned) and a "moron" for some seeming contradiction.

I also have to point out that he "fist pumped" Hillary Clinton at Mohammed Ali's eulogy. If he's as astute as he purports to be, he has to know that Hillary would have invaded Syria and killed a few hundred thousand more Syrians for the simple act of defiantly preserving their country. By almost any read of Ali's history, he would have been adamantly ("killing brown people") against that. But there was Silverstein using the platform to promote, arguably, perpetual war.

Silverstein is probably not a good (ie. consistent) arbiter of Israeli impact on US politics. Just sayin'.

I wish it were otherwise.

Taras 77 , December 24, 2017 at 6:35 pm

https://www.therussophile.org/virus-found-inside-dnc-server-is-linked-to-a-company-based-in-pakistan.html/

This may be a tad ot but it relates to the alleged hacking of the DNC, the role debbie wasserman schultz plays in the spy ring (awan bros) in house of rep servers: I have long suspected that mossad has their fingers in this entire mess. FWIW

Good site, BTW.

Zachary Smith , December 24, 2017 at 7:35 pm

I can't recall why I removed the Tikun Olam site from my bookmarks – it happened quite a while back. Generally I do that when I feel the blogger crossed some kind of personal red line. Something Mr. Silverstein wrote put him over that line with me.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/06/us/06leak.html?hp

In the course of a search I found that at the neocon NYT. Mr. Silverstein claims several things I find unbelievable, and from that alone I wonder about his ultimate motives. I may be excessively touchy about this, but that's how it is.

Larry Larsen , December 24, 2017 at 8:51 pm

Yeah Zachary, "wondering about ultimate motives" is probably a good way to put it/his views. He's obviously conflicted, if not deferential in some aspects of Israeli policy. He really was a hero of mine, but now I just don't get whether what he says is masking something or a true belief. He says some good stuff, but, but, but .

P. Michael Garber , December 24, 2017 at 11:54 pm

Yeah I found a couple of Silverstein's statements to be closer to neocon propaganda than reality: "Because this is Israel and because we have a conflicted relationship with the Israel lobby . . ." "Instead of going directly to the Obama administration, with which they had terrible relations, they went to Trump instead." My impression was that the whole "terrible relationship between Obama and Netanyahu" was manufactured by the Israel lobby to bully Obama. However these are small blips within an otherwise solid critique of the Israel lobby's influence.

[Dec 25, 2017] Kamala Harris Pisses Off Intelligence Committee Chairman When She Tries to Control Senate Hearing!

Dec 25, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Published on Nov 9, 2017

Kamala Harris Pisses Off Intelligence Committee Chairman When She Tries to Control Senate Hearing!

[Dec 23, 2017] Neither Robert Mueller's team nor the US Senate Intelligence Committee has bothered to contact WikiLeaks or me, in any manner, ever

Dec 23, 2017 | marknesop.wordpress.com

Northern Star , December 18, 2017 at 12:07 pm

"Neither Robert Mueller's team nor the US Senate Intelligence Committee has bothered to contact WikiLeaks or me, in any manner, ever." -- @Julian Assange, Twitter, September 20, 2017

This one tweet completely invalidates the notion that Robert Mueller has been conducting a legitimate investigation into the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential elections. Regardless of the degree of suspicion in which Assange is held, there is absolutely no excuse for the people responsible for investigating Russia not to have had any interaction of any kind whatsoever with one of the central characters in the official narrative about what Russia is supposed to have done.

"Prosecutors have been avoiding Assange because he has said multiple times that the Russian government is not the source of the DNC leaks."

If his job was to find out what actually happened last year, Mueller would have spoken with Assange personally, and he would have done so long ago. But finding out what happened last year is not Mueller's job. Mueller's job is to enforce a pre-existing narrative. It is painfully obvious at this point that the Senate Intelligence Committee and Mueller's team have been avoiding Assange the way Hillary Clinton avoids personal responsibility because Assange has said multiple times that the Russian government is not the source of the DNC leaks or the Podesta emails released last year.

If this is an actual investigation into an actual alleged crime, then Assange is necessarily either (A) a source of useful information, (B) a person of interest, or (C) a suspect in the crime itself. None of those allows for any excuse for not speaking to him. If it's either (A) or (B), he's a potential goldmine of information for their investigation to make use of. If it's (C), they can grill him and try to get him to give something up. Even someone caught on video committing a murder eventually gets interviewed by the law enforcement officials responsible for investigating their case to establish the accused's side of the story; if they didn't, they'd be committing malpractice. Since they did not seek to question Assange early and extensively, this cannot possibly be an actual investigation into an actual allegation.

"If his job was to find out what actually happened last year, Mueller would have spoken with Assange personally long ago."

The fact of the matter is that Russia has been America's Public Enemy Number One since the end of World War Two, and for that reason there is a longstanding tradition in the United States of tarring political enemies with baseless accusations of Kremlin ties. Establishment loyalists have been accusing WikiLeaks of being in bed with Russia since long before any election meddling accusations surfaced, despite the organization's long and continued record of publishing critical documents related to the Russian Federation. They have been doing so not because there is any basis for such accusations, but because WikiLeaks is their political enemy. There is nothing more hostile to America's pernicious unelected power establishment than unauthorized truth-telling, and WikiLeaks is currently the world's leader in unauthorized truth-telling. It is that simple.

Mueller's investigation has no interest in finding the truth. Mueller's investigation is actively avoiding all potential sources of truth. The US intelligence community to which Mueller is loyal is the right arm of America's unelected power establishment, and due to conflicting economic and geopolitical interests things have been coming to a head with Russia for a long time. The neoconservative ideology which governs America's foreign policy is geared first and foremost toward preventing the rise of another rival superpower, and the former seat of the Soviet Union will always be first on the list of suspects.
"WikiLeaks is currently the world's leader in unauthorized truth-telling. It is that simple.
Mueller's investigation has no interest in finding the truth."

Things are not going as planned for America's true rulers. Not in Syria, not in North Korea, and certainly not in Russia.

***People's unprecedented ability to network and share information due to rising internet literacy and access has caused a severe breakdown in the propaganda machine which holds their entire prison together, and people are waking up to their manipulations***
.
(Hence the move to eliminate net neurtrality as I posted supra)

These creeps are on the back foot now. Keep fighting and wrest control of the world away from the plutocratic sociopaths who are trying to deceive and enslave us"

https://www.blackagendareport.com/entire-russian-hacking-narrative-invalidated-single-assange-tweet

[Dec 23, 2017] Can the FBI Get Away With Getting Trump Team Emails, by Andrew Napolitano - The Unz Review

Notable quotes:
"... The practical effect of Mueller's acquisition of the transition emails could be devastating to White House staff who once worked for the transition. Many of them have been interviewed by the FBI while no doubt being ignorant of the fact that the FBI had read their emails. Stated differently, the FBI was in a position to lead Trump White House staff members into a lying trap -- just as it did with retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn -- by asking them questions to which the FBI already had the answers. ..."
"... Lying traps are reprehensible, but they're lawful. And they are not unique to Mueller's practices; it is the way the feds work today. Can the FBI get away with getting the Trump team's emails? In a word: yes. This investigation is not going away soon. ..."
Dec 23, 2017 | www.unz.com

Within hours of his victory in last year's presidential election, Donald Trump dispatched his lawyers to establish a nonprofit corporation to manage his transition from private life to the presidency. This was done pursuant to a federal statute that provides for taxpayer-funded assistance to the newly elected -- but not yet inaugurated -- president. The statutory term for the corporation is the presidential transition team, or PTT.

In addition to paying the PTT's bills, the General Services Administration, which manages all nonmilitary federal property, provided the PTT with government computers, software and a computer service provider. During the course of the PTT's existence, the folks who worked for it sent or received tens of thousands of emails. The PTT ceased to exist upon Trump's inauguration, and a receiver was hired to wind it down.

Last weekend, a lawyer for the receiver revealed a letter he sent to Congress complaining that special counsel Robert Mueller -- who is investigating whether there was any agreement between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin that resulted in the now-well-known efforts by Russian intelligence to affect the outcome of the 2016 presidential election -- dispatched FBI agents to the GSA looking for copies of all the PTT's emails and that the GSA surrendered them.

How did this happen?

When the FBI is looking for documents or tangible things, it has several legal tools available. They range in their disruptive nature from a simple request to a grand jury subpoena to a judicially authorized search warrant.
The FBI request is the easiest for the government, and if FBI agents ask you for something and you give it to them, you cannot later be heard to complain that your privacy rights regarding the things you surrendered were violated. If they seize your documents pursuant to a subpoena or a warrant, they normally get to use what they have seized.

The issue becomes more complex when the FBI comes calling for documents of yours that are legally in the hands of a custodian -- such as your physician, lawyer, banker or accountant. In the case of Trump's PTT and Mueller's wish for all PTT emails, the sought-after data -- the electronic copies of all the PTT's emails -- were in custody of the GSA.

Anyone who has ever used a GSA computer is familiar with the warning that appears on the screen at the time of each use. It says that there is no right to privacy in the communications sent or received, as the electronic versions of those communications are the property of the federal government. This, no doubt, is the reason Hillary Clinton infamously used her husband's computer servers during her four years at the State Department rather than the government's.
We do not know whether Mueller's FBI agents merely requested the electronic data from the GSA or his prosecutors obtained a grand jury subpoena. If it was a simple FBI request and if the GSA simply complied, that was a lawful acquisition by the FBI of the PTT emails, yet in that case, the GSA violated its fiduciary duty to inform the PTT of the request before it complied with it.

If the FBI came calling on the GSA with a grand jury subpoena, that means Mueller's team must have presented evidence under oath to a grand jury and demonstrated that the sought-after items would more likely than not be helpful to the investigation. When a grand jury issues a subpoena to a custodian of records -- no matter who the custodian is -- it is the moral and fiduciary duty of the custodian, not the government, to inform the owner of the subpoenaed items that a subpoena has been received.

In some cases, it is also the legal duty of the custodian to inform the owner, but it apparently was not in this case. As far as we can tell, there was no written agreement between the GSA and the PTT requiring the GSA to inform the PTT of any document requests or subpoenas. Had such a request been revealed, the lawyer for the receiver of the PTT would have had an opportunity to challenge the government before a judge. Without that notice, there is no time for the challenge.

Until 1986, it was the duty of the government when seeking documents or tangible things from a custodian to inform the owner, as well as the custodian, of its intent. That fair procedure gave the owner of the records time to challenge the government before a judge. But the Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986 (which has nothing whatsoever to do with protecting privacy), enacted at the dawn of the digital age, did away with that requirement.

Now if the custodian remains silent in the face of an FBI request or a grand jury subpoena, the owner of the documents loses his opportunity to keep them from the government. That is what happened here.

But there is more.

The practical effect of Mueller's acquisition of the transition emails could be devastating to White House staff who once worked for the transition. Many of them have been interviewed by the FBI while no doubt being ignorant of the fact that the FBI had read their emails. Stated differently, the FBI was in a position to lead Trump White House staff members into a lying trap -- just as it did with retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn -- by asking them questions to which the FBI already had the answers.

Lying traps are reprehensible, but they're lawful. And they are not unique to Mueller's practices; it is the way the feds work today. Can the FBI get away with getting the Trump team's emails? In a word: yes. This investigation is not going away soon.

Copyright 2017 Andrew P. Napolitano. Distributed by Creators.com.

anonymous , Disclaimer December 21, 2017 at 8:29 am GMT

Judge Waterboy is back again this week, serving the Establishment by propagandizing against Russia while supposedly giving readers expert guidance on American governmental and legal processes.

" .. special counsel Robert Mueller -- who is investigating whether there was any agreement between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin that resulted in the now-well-known efforts by Russian intelligence to affect the outcome of the 2016 presidential election -- "

Where does one go to read any specification of and see any evidence for these "now-well-known efforts"? Has anyone who still watches TV seen that question put to Mr. Napolitano?

Notice, too, how the language has been massaged since Mr. Napolitano's column published here on December 7:

" .. the no-nonsense special counsel investigating whether any Americans aided the Russian government in its now well-known interference in the 2016 American presidential election .. "

Rather than copy/cut/paste, the author has taken the time to alter his words:

any Americans >>> the Trump campaign
Russian government >>> Russian intelligence
interference >>> affect the outcome

Mr. Napolitano may be giving himself room to navigate the evolving scandals in Washington, where we are invited to take sides in the intramural battle between Team Red and Team Blue or, for the relatively sophisticated, President Trump and Deep State. But no matter how that all turns out, the processes and this article about them serve to Otherize another people and state from which our rulers can keep us safe and free.

Realist , December 21, 2017 at 9:58 am GMT
"Can the FBI Get Away with Getting Trump Team Emails?"

They already have. We will hear more bluster from Representatives Gowdy and Jordan but as always in the past nothing will happen. I have lost count, but these two have been grandstanding for years on all manner of injustice .without one victory.

The Alarmist , December 21, 2017 at 10:11 am GMT

"Can the FBI get away with getting the Trump team's emails?"

Did Martha Stewart go to jail for changing her story to the FBI?

Clearly we are operating outside the rule of law, in the rule of men. Mueller and team are the law.

WorkingClass , December 21, 2017 at 3:43 pm GMT
Again with "now-well-known efforts by Russian intelligence to affect the outcome of the 2016 presidential election"?

The meme is well known. But approximately half of us know it is a lie. Judge Swamp Creature knows it's a lie but (repeatedly) repeats it anyway. What's in it for you Judge?

What is now well known is that Mueller is a political assassin, hired to lead a soft coup against an elected president.

polistra , December 21, 2017 at 6:56 pm GMT
Why bother to ask these silly questions? FBI gets away with anything and everything it wants to do. When a mob owns ALL the blackmail files, nobody can stop it. There is no such thing as "law". There is only bullets, bombs and blackmail.
Eric Rasmusen , December 21, 2017 at 9:40 pm GMT
Mr. Napolitano is taking a radical position when he confidently claims that it is legal for the FBI to secretly read transition emails without a warrant or subpoena, or, indeed, any official authority whatsover. It seems the FBI simply asked GSA for the emails, rather than getting a subpoena -- that's the big point here, since of course GSA has to hand them over if there is a subpoena, but a court has to authorize it then. So here, the FBI had no more authority than any other agency in the executive branch. Mr. Napolitano's position is that that's fine. If so, it would equally have been okay for the GSA to give the Secretary of Agriculture, the IRS Commissioner, or President Obama permission to secretly view the Trump transition team's emails during the transition. Indeed, the FBI was not acting with any authority in this case, just a request, so Napolitano's claim is that the GSA could have given the emails to Nancy Pelosi if she'd asked. Is that really the position you want to take? It's absurd. If that were the law, then no winning presidential candidate would ever want to make use of transition facilities and computer systems, since it would be to allow the opposition party open access to all of his plans.
Backwoods Bob , December 22, 2017 at 5:33 am GMT
Hey Andy, thanks.

It's sobering. So Mueller has more lying traps on Trump staffers. It's incredible.

It makes my stomach turn. But this is far from over.

Svigor , December 22, 2017 at 7:38 am GMT

who is investigating whether there was any agreement between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin that resulted in the now-well-known efforts by Russian intelligence to affect the outcome of the 2016 presidential election

For true? Great. Since they're so well-known, please describe them in detail.Oh, you mean nobody's got any idea WTF those efforts were? Yeah, thought so.

TV people. They live in the TV universe.

unit472 , December 22, 2017 at 7:54 pm GMT
Even assuming a GSA computer warns its user ( everytime?) that data stored on it is government property how does that allow Mueller or anyone else to seize the emails of the party not using a GSA computer? No warning was given to the party receiving an e-mail or replying to an email sent from a government computer.

I recognize a wiretap records both ends of a telephone call or email but that requires a judge to issue the warrant ( and we can hope the judge has more respect for the Constitution than the creep writing this does).

[Dec 22, 2017] Rosenstein knew that he is authorizing a fishing expedition against Trump, so he is a part of the cabal

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... While it's clear that this political cage-match is going to persist for some time to come, we'd like to make two points. First, that there was never sufficient ..."
"... While it's clear that this political cage-match is going to persist for some time to come, we'd like to make two points. First, that there was never sufficient reason to appoint a Special Counsel. The threshold for making such an appointment should have been probable cause, that is, deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein should have shown why he thought there was 'reasonable basis to believe that a crime had been committed.' That's what's required under the Fourth Amendment, and that's the standard that should have been met. But Rosenstein ignored that rule because it improved the Special Counsel's chances of netting indictments ..."
"... the loosey-goosy standard Rosenstein has applied is an invitation for an open ended fishing expedition aimed at derailing the political agenda of the elected government. This puts too much power in the hands of unelected agents in the bureaucracy who may be influenced by powerbrokers operating behind the scenes who want to disrupt, obstruct, or paralyze the government. And this, in fact, is exactly what is taking place presently. ..."
"... Naturally, a broad-ranging mandate like Rosenstein's will result in excesses, and it has. Of the four people who have been caught up in Mueller's expansive dragnet, exactly zero have been indicted on charges even remotely connected to the original allegation of "collusion with Russia to sway the presidential election in Trump's favor." Clearly, people's civil liberties are being violated to conduct a political jihad on an unpopular president and his aids. ..."
"... The daily blather in the media does not meet that standard nor does the much ballyhooed Intelligence Community Assessment that was supposed to provide ironclad proof of Russian meddling in the elections. The ICA even offered this sweeping disclaimer at the beginning of the report which admits that the intelligence gathered therein should not in any way be construed to represent solid evidence of anything. ..."
"... Judgments are not intended to imply that we have proof that shows something to be a fact. Assessments are based on collected information, which is often incomplete or fragmentary, as well as logic, argumentation, and precedents ..."
"... The fact is, Mueller is no elder statesman or paragon of virtue. He's a political assassin whose task is to take down Trump at all cost. Unfortunately for Mueller, the credibility of his investigation is beginning to wane as conflicts of interest mount and public confidence dwindles. After 18 months of relentless propaganda and political skullduggery, the Russia-gate fiction is beginning to unravel ..."
"... The skepticism about Mueller probably has less to do with the man, than it does with Washington in general ..."
"... That may be the case among those who have never bothered to look past the mainstream TV news for information about Mueller. Those who have kept up with his career in the swamp have been skeptical (to say the least) about Mueller's appointment because he's so obviously a criminal himself ..."
Dec 22, 2017 | www.unz.com

... ... ...

While it's clear that this political cage-match is going to persist for some time to come, we'd like to make two points. First, that there was never sufficient

While it's clear that this political cage-match is going to persist for some time to come, we'd like to make two points. First, that there was never sufficient reason to appoint a Special Counsel. The threshold for making such an appointment should have been probable cause, that is, deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein should have shown why he thought there was 'reasonable basis to believe that a crime had been committed.' That's what's required under the Fourth Amendment, and that's the standard that should have been met. But Rosenstein ignored that rule because it improved the Special Counsel's chances of netting indictments

Even so, there's no evidence that a crime has been committed. None. And that's been the main criticism of the investigation from the get go. It's fine for the New York Times and the Washington Post to reiterate the same tedious, unsubstantiated claims over and over again ad nauseam. Their right to fabricate news is guaranteed under the First Amendment and they take full advantage of that privilege. But it's different for professional attorney operating at the highest level of the Justice Department to appoint a Special Counsel to rummage through all manner of private or privileged documents, transcripts, tax returns, private conversations, intercepted phone calls and emails -- of the democratically-elected president -- based on nothing more than the spurious and politically-motivated allegations made in the nation's elite media or by flagrantly-partisan actors operating in the Intelligence Community or law enforcement.

Can you see the problem here? This is not just an attack on Trump (whose immigration, environmental, health care, tax and foreign policies I personally despise.) It is an attempt to roll back the results of the election by bogging him down in legal proceedings making it impossible for him to govern. These attacks are not just on Trump, they're on the legitimate authority of the people to choose their own leaders in democratic elections. That's what's at stake. And that's why there must be a high threshold for launching an investigation like this.

Consider this: On May 17, 2017, when Rosenstein announced his decision to appoint a Special Counsel he said the following:

"In my capacity as acting attorney general I determined that it is in the public interest for me to exercise my authority and appoint a special counsel to assume responsibility for this matter. My decision is not a finding that crimes have been committed or that any prosecution is warranted. I have made no such determination. What I have determined is that based upon the unique circumstances, the public interest requires me to place this investigation under the authority of a person who exercises a degree of independence from the normal chain of command." Rosenstein wrote that his responsibility is to ensure a "full and thorough investigation of the Russian government's efforts to interfere in the 2016 election." As special counsel, Mueller is charged with investigating "any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump."

That's not good enough. There's no evidence that "any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump" were improper, unethical or illegal. Nor do any such presumed "links and/or coordination" imply a crime was committed. Rather, the loosey-goosy standard Rosenstein has applied is an invitation for an open ended fishing expedition aimed at derailing the political agenda of the elected government. This puts too much power in the hands of unelected agents in the bureaucracy who may be influenced by powerbrokers operating behind the scenes who want to disrupt, obstruct, or paralyze the government. And this, in fact, is exactly what is taking place presently.

Naturally, a broad-ranging mandate like Rosenstein's will result in excesses, and it has. Of the four people who have been caught up in Mueller's expansive dragnet, exactly zero have been indicted on charges even remotely connected to the original allegation of "collusion with Russia to sway the presidential election in Trump's favor." Clearly, people's civil liberties are being violated to conduct a political jihad on an unpopular president and his aids.

So, how does one establish whether there's a reasonable basis to believe that a crime has been committed?

The daily blather in the media does not meet that standard nor does the much ballyhooed Intelligence Community Assessment that was supposed to provide ironclad proof of Russian meddling in the elections. The ICA even offered this sweeping disclaimer at the beginning of the report which admits that the intelligence gathered therein should not in any way be construed to represent solid evidence of anything.
Here's the from the report:

"Judgments are not intended to imply that we have proof that shows something to be a fact. Assessments are based on collected information, which is often incomplete or fragmentary, as well as logic, argumentation, and precedents."

... ... ...

The fact is, Mueller is no elder statesman or paragon of virtue. He's a political assassin whose task is to take down Trump at all cost. Unfortunately for Mueller, the credibility of his investigation is beginning to wane as conflicts of interest mount and public confidence dwindles. After 18 months of relentless propaganda and political skullduggery, the Russia-gate fiction is beginning to unravel.

Twodees Partain , December 22, 2017 at 11:59 am GMT

"The skepticism about Mueller probably has less to do with the man, than it does with Washington in general."

That may be the case among those who have never bothered to look past the mainstream TV news for information about Mueller. Those who have kept up with his career in the swamp have been skeptical (to say the least) about Mueller's appointment because he's so obviously a criminal himself.

That segment of the general public, as it were, have been opposed to the establishment of the investigation itself from the first day it was proposed.

[Dec 2Colgate/Mueller_digging_dirt/n20171222X_pat_buchanan_unz171222_the_russiagate_investigation_may_have_busted_an.htm"> The Russiagate investigation may have busted an axle

[Dec 21, 2017] The RussiaGate Witch-Hunt Stockman Names Names In The Deep State's Insurance Policy by David Stockman

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Needless to say, the Never Trumpers were eminently correct in their worry that Trump would sully, degrade and weaken the Imperial Presidency. That he has done in spades with his endless tweet storms that consist mainly of petty score settling, self-justification, unseemly boasting and shrill partisanship; and on top of that you can pile his impetuous attacks on friend, foe and bystanders (e.g. NFL kneelers) alike. ..."
Dec 18, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

Deep State's "Insurance Policy" Tyler Durden Dec 18, 2017 11:05 PM 0 SHARES Authored by David Stockman via Contra Corner blog,

There was a sinister plot to meddle in the 2016 election, after all. But it was not orchestrated from the Kremlin; it was an entirely homegrown affair conducted from the inner sanctums---the White House, DOJ, the Hoover Building and Langley----of the Imperial City.

Likewise, the perpetrators didn't speak Russian or write in the Cyrillic script. In fact, they were lifetime beltway insiders occupying the highest positions of power in the US government.

Here are the names and rank of the principal conspirators:

To a person, the participants in this illicit cabal shared the core trait that made Obama such a blight on the nation's well-being. To wit, he never held an honest job outside the halls of government in his entire adult life; and as a careerist agent of the state and practitioner of its purported goods works, he exuded a sanctimonious disdain for everyday citizens who make their living along the capitalist highways and by-ways of America.

The above cast of election-meddlers, of course, comes from the same mold. If Wikipedia is roughly correct, just these 10 named perpetrators have punched in about 300 years of post-graduate employment---and 260 of those years (87%) were on government payrolls or government contractor jobs.

As to whether they shared Obama's political class arrogance, Peter Strzok left nothing to the imagination in his now celebrated texts to his gal-pal, Lisa Page:

"Just went to a southern Virginia Walmart. I could SMELL the Trump support......I LOATHE congress....And F Trump."

You really didn't need the ALL CAPS to get the gist. In a word, the anti-Trump cabal is comprised of creatures of the state.

Their now obvious effort to alter the outcome of the 2016 election was nothing less than the Imperial City's immune system attacking an alien threat, which embodied the very opposite trait: That is, the Donald had never spent one moment on the state's payroll, had been elected to no government office and displayed a spirited contempt for the groupthink and verities of officialdom in the Imperial City.

But it is the vehemence and flagrant transparency of this conspiracy to prevent Trump's ascension to the Oval Office that reveals the profound threat to capitalism and democracy posed by the Deep State and its prosperous elites and fellow travelers domiciled in the Imperial City.

That is to say, Donald Trump was no kind of anti-statist and only a skin-deep populist, at best. His signature anti-immigrant meme was apparently discovered by accident when in the early days of the campaign he went off on Mexican thugs, rapists and murderers----only to find that it resonated strongly among a certain element of the GOP grass roots.

But a harsh line on immigrants, refugees and Muslims would not have incited the Deep State into an attempted coup d'état; it wouldn't have mobilized so overtly against Ted Cruz, for example, whose positions on the ballyhooed terrorist/immigrant threat were not much different.

No, what sent the Imperial City establishment into a fit of apoplexy was exactly two things that struck at the core of its raison d' etre.

First was Trump's stated intentions to seek rapprochement with Putin's Russia and his sensible embrace of a non-interventionist "America First" view of Washington's role in the world. And secondly, and even more importantly, was his very persona.

That is to say, the role of today's president is to function as the suave, reliable maître d' of the Imperial City and the lead spokesman for Washington's purported good works at home and abroad. And for that role the slovenly, loud-mouthed, narcissistic, bombastic, ill-informed and crudely-mannered Donald Trump was utterly unqualified.

Stated differently, welfare statism and warfare statism is the secular religion of the Imperial City and its collaborators in the mainstream media; and the Oval Office is the bully pulpit from which its catechisms, bromides and self-justifications are propagandized to the unwashed masses---the tax-and-debt-slaves of Flyover America who bear the burden of its continuation.

Needless to say, the Never Trumpers were eminently correct in their worry that Trump would sully, degrade and weaken the Imperial Presidency. That he has done in spades with his endless tweet storms that consist mainly of petty score settling, self-justification, unseemly boasting and shrill partisanship; and on top of that you can pile his impetuous attacks on friend, foe and bystanders (e.g. NFL kneelers) alike.

Yet that is exactly what has the Deep State and its media collaborators running scared. To wit, Trump's entire modus operandi is not about governing or a serious policy agenda---and most certainly not about Making America's Economy Great Again. (MAEGA)

By appointing a passel of Keynesian monetary central planners to the Fed and launching an orgy of fiscal recklessness via his massive defense spending and tax-cutting initiatives, the Donald has more than sealed his own doom: There will unavoidably be a massive financial and economic crisis in the years just ahead and the rulers of the Imperial City will most certainly heap the blame upon him with malice aforethought.

In the interim, however, what the Donald is actually doing is sharply polarizing the country and using the Bully Pulpit for the very opposite function assigned to it by Washington's permanent political class. Namely, to discredit and vilify the ruling elites of government and the media and thereby undermine the docility and acquiescence of the unwashed masses upon which the Imperial City's rule and hideous prosperity depend.

It is no wonder, then, that the inner circle of the Obama Administration plotted an "insurance policy". They saw it coming-----that is, an offensive rogue disrupter who was soft on Russia, to boot--- and out of that alarm the entire hoax of RussiaGate was born.

As is now well known from the recent dump of 375 Strzok/Gates text messages, there occurred on August 15, 2016 a meeting in the office of FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe (who is still there) to kick off the RussiaGate campaign. As Strzok later wrote to Page, who was also at the meeting:

" I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy's office -- that there's no way he gets elected -- but I'm afraid we can't take that risk......It's like an insurance policy in the unlikely event that you die before you're 40."

They will try to spin this money quote seven-ways to Sunday, but in the context of everything else now known there is only one possible meaning: The national security and law enforcement machinery of Imperial Washington was being activated then and there in behalf of Hillary Clinton's campaign.

Indeed, the trail of proof is quite clear. At the very time of this August meeting, the FBI was already being fed the initial elements of the Steele dossier, and the latter had nothing to do with any kind of national security investigation.

For crying out loud, it was plain old "oppo research" paid for by the Clinton campaign and the DNC. And the only way that it bore on Russian involvement in the US election was that virtually all of the salacious material and false narratives about Trump emissaries meeting with high level Russian officials was disinformation sourced in Moscow, and was completely untrue.

As former senior FBI official, Andrew McCarthy, neatly summarized the sequence of action recently:

The Clinton campaign generated the Steele dossier through lawyers who retained Fusion GPS. Fusion, in turn, hired Steele, a former British intelligence agent who had FBI contacts from prior collaborative investigations. The dossier was steered into the FBI's hands as it began to be compiled in the summer of 2016. A Fusion Russia expert, Nellie Ohr, worked with Steele on Fusion's anti-Trump research. She is the wife of Bruce Ohr, then the deputy associate attorney general -- the top subordinate of Sally Yates, then Obama's deputy attorney general (later acting AG). Ohr was a direct pipeline to Yates.....

Based on the publication this week of text messages between FBI agent Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, the FBI lawyer with whom he was having an extramarital affair, we have learned of a meeting convened in the office of FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe...... right around the time the Page FISA warrant was obtained......

Bruce Ohr met personally with Steele. And after Trump was elected, according to Fusion founder Glenn Simpson, he requested and got a meeting with Simpson to, as Simpson told the House Intelligence Committee, "discuss our findings regarding Russia and the election."

This, of course, was the precise time Democrats began peddling the public narrative of Trump-Russia collusion. It is the time frame during which Ohr's boss, Yates, was pushing an absurd Logan Act investigation of Trump transition official Michael Flynn (then slotted to become Trump's national-security adviser) over Flynn's meetings with the Russian ambassador.

Here's the thing. There is almost nothing in the Steele dossiers which is true. At the same time, there is no real alternative evidence based on hard NSA intercepts that show Russian government agents were behind the only two acts----the leaks of the DNC emails and the Podesta emails----that were of even minimal import to the outcome of the 2016 presidential campaign.

As to the veracity of the dossier, the raving anti-Trumper and former CIA interim chief, Michael Morrell, settled the matter. If you are paying ex-FSA agents for information on the back streets of Moscow, the more you pay, the more "information" you will get:

Then I asked myself, why did these guys provide this information, what was their motivation? And I subsequently learned that he paid them. That the intermediaries paid the sources and the intermediaries got the money from Chris. And that kind of worries me a little bit because if you're paying somebody, particularly former [Russian Federal Security Service] officers, they are going to tell you truth and innuendo and rumor, and they're going to call you up and say, 'Hey, let's have another meeting, I have more information for you,' because they want to get paid some more,' Morrell said.

Far from being "verified," the dossier is best described as a pack of lies, gossip, innuendo and irrelevancies. Take, for example, the claim that Trump lawyer Michael Cohen met with Russian Federation Council foreign affairs head Konstantin Kosachev in Prague during August 2016. That claim is verifiably false as proven by Cohen's own passport.

Likewise, the dossier 's claim that Carter Page was offered a giant bribe by the head of Rosneft, the Russian state energy company, in return for lifting the sanctions is downright laughable. That's because Carter Page never had any serious role in the Trump campaign and was one of hundreds of unpaid informal advisors who hung around the basket hoping for some role in a future Trump government.

Like the hapless George Papadopoulos, in fact, Page apparently never met Trump, had no foreign policy credentials and had been drafted onto the campaign's so-called foreign policy advisory committee out of sheer desperation.

That is, because the mainstream GOP foreign policy establishment had so completely boycotted the Trump campaign, the latter was forced to fill its advisory committee essentially from the phone book; and that desperation move in March 2016, in turn, had been undertaken in order to damp-down the media uproar over the Donald's assertion that he got his foreign policy advise from watching TV!

The truth of the matter is that Page was a former Merrill Lynch stockbrokers who had plied his trade in Russia several years earlier. He had gone to Moscow in July 2016 on his own dime and without any mandate from the Trump campaign; and his "meeting" with Rosneft actually consisted of drinks with an old buddy from his broker days who had become head of investor relations at Rosneft.

Nevertheless, it is pretty evident that the Steele dossier's tale about Page's alleged bribery scheme was the basis for the FISA warrant that resulted in wiretaps on Page and other officials in Trump Tower during September and October.

And that's your insurance policy at work: The Deep State and its allies in the Obama administration were desperately looking for dirt with which to crucify the Donald, and thereby insure that the establishment's anointed candidate would not fail at the polls.

So the question recurs as to why did the conspirators resort to the outlandish and even cartoonish disinformation contained in the Steele dossier?

The answer to that question cuts to the quick of the entire RussiaGate hoax. To wit, that's all they had!

Notwithstanding the massive machinery and communications vacuum cleaners operated by the $75 billion US intelligence communities and its vaunted 17 agencies, there are no digital intercepts proving that Russian state operatives hacked the DNC and Podesta emails. Period.

Yet when it comes to anything that even remotely smacks of "meddling" in the US election campaign, that's all she wrote.

There is nothing else of moment, and most especially not the alleged phishing expeditions directed at 20 or so state election boards. Most of these have been discredited, denied by local officials or were simply the work of everyday hackers looking for voter registration lists that could be sold.

The patently obvious point here is that in America there is no on-line network of voting machines on either an intra-state or interstate basis. And that fact renders the whole election machinery hacking meme null and void. Not even the treacherous Russians are stupid enough to waste their time trying to hack that which is unhackable.

In that vein, the Facebook ad buying scheme is even more ridiculous. In the context of an election campaign in which upwards of $7 billion of spending was reported by candidates and their committees to the FEC, and during which easily double that amount was spent by independent committees and issue campaigns, the notion that just $44,000 of Facebook ads made any difference to anything is not worthy of adult thought.

And, yes, out of the ballyhooed $100,000 of Facebook ads, the majority occurred after the election was over and none of them named candidates, anyway. The ads consisted of issue messages that reflected all points on the political spectrum from pro-choice to anti-gun control.

And even this so-called effort at "polarizing" the American electorate was "discovered" only after Facebook failed to find any "Russian-linked" ads during its first two searches. Instead, this complete drivel was detected only after the Senate's modern day Joseph McCarthy, Sen. Mark Warner, who is the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee and a leading legislator on Internet regulation, showed up on Mark Zuckerberg's doorstep at Facebook headquarters.

In any event, we can be sure there are no NSA intercepts proving that the Russians hacked the Dem emails for one simple reason: They would have been leaked long ago by the vast network of Imperial City operatives plotting to bring the Donald down.

Moreover, the original architect and godfather of NSA's vast spying apparatus, William Binney, has essentially proved that the DNC emails were leaked by an insider who downloaded them on a memory stick. By conducting his own experiments, he showed that the known download speed of one batch of DNC emails could not have occurred over the Internet from a remote location in Russia or anywhere else on the planet, and actually matched what was possible only via a local USB-connected thumb drive.

So the real meaning of the Strzok/Gates text messages is straight foreword. There was a conspiracy to prevent Trump's election, and then after the shocking results of November 8, this campaign morphed into an intensified effort to discredit the winner.

For instance, Susan Rice got Obama to lower the classification level of the information obtained from the Trump campaign intercepts and other dirt-gathering actions by the Intelligence Community (IC)--- so that it could be disseminated more readily to all Washington intelligence agencies.

In short order, of course, the IC was leaking like a sieve, thereby paving the way for the post-election hysteria and the implication that any contact with a Russian--even one living in Brooklyn-- must be collusion. And that included calls to the Russian ambassador by the president-elect's own national security advisor designate.

Should there by any surprise, therefore, that it turns out the Andrew McCabe bushwhacked General Flynn on January 24 when he called to say that FBI agents were on the way to the White House for what Flynn presumed to be more security clearance work with his incipient staff.

No at all. The FBI team was there to interrogate Flynn about the transcripts of his perfectly appropriate and legal conversations with Ambassador Kislyak about two matters of state----the UN resolution on Israel and the spiteful new sanctions on certain Russian citizens that Obama announced on December 28 in a fit of pique over the Dems election loss.

And that insidious team of FBI gotcha cops was led by none other than......Peter Strzok!

But after all the recent leaks---and these text messages are just the tip of the iceberg-----the die is now cast. Either the Deep State and its minions and collaborators in the media and the Republican party, too, will soon succeed in putting Mike Pence into the Oval Office, or the Imperial City is about ready to break-out in vicious partisan warfare like never before.

Either way, economic and fiscal governance is about ready to collapse entirely, making the tax bill a kind of last hurrah before they mayhem really begins.

In that context, selling the rip may become one of the most profitable speculations ever imagined.

CuttingEdge -> The_Juggernaut , Dec 19, 2017 2:05 AM

Not sure why Stockman went off on a tangent about Trump's innumerate economic strategy - kinda dilutes from an otherwise informative piece for anyone who hasn't a handle on the underhand shit that's been hitting the fan in recent months. Its like he has to have a go about it no matter what the main theme. Like PCR and "insouciance". And then there's the texting...

Clue yourself in, David.

A very small percentage of the public are actually informed about what is really going down. Those that visit ZH or your website. Fox is the only pro-Trump mainstream TV news outlet, and as to the NYT, WP et al? The media disinformation complex keep the rest in the matrix, and it has been very easy to see in action over the last year or so because it has been so well co-ordinated (and totally fabricated).

Given the blatant and contemptous avoidance of the truth by the MSM (the current litany of seditious/treasonous actions being a case in point), it is fair to say that Trump's tweets provide a very real public service - focussing the (otherwise ignorant) public's attention on many things the aforementioned cunts (I'll include Google and FaecesBook) divert from like the plague (and making them look utter slime in the process).

Don't knock it

A Sentinel -> BennyBoy , Dec 19, 2017 2:23 AM

I do respect stockman but here's bullshit-call #1: he says that the deep state doesn't like the divisiveness he causes: bush certainly did that and Obama' did so at an order of magnitude higher. I don't believe that the left is more upset by trump than we were by Barry- we're just not a bunch of sniveling, narcissistic babies like they are.

redmudhooch -> BennyBoy , Dec 19, 2017 1:14 PM

Hondurans accuse US of election meddling

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/12/hondurans-accuse-election-meddling...

The US embassy in Honduras has been surrounded by protesters infuriated by the three-week-wait for the definitive result of the presidential election.

Demonstrators accuse the US of meddling in last month's vote which both candidates say they won.

Wage Slave 927 -> shitshitshit , Dec 19, 2017 1:45 AM

When the details of the FISA warrant application are revealed, it will be like a megaton-class munition detonating, and the Deep State will bear the brunt of destruction.

enough of this , Dec 18, 2017 11:19 PM

The Comey - Strzok Duet satire:

http://investmentwatchblog.com/the-comey-strzok-duet-on-the-eve-of-the-c...

SheHunter , Dec 18, 2017 11:25 PM

For those of you who have not yet discovered it Mr. Stockman's Contra Corner is a hands-down great blog well worth a nightly read.

zagzigga -> Mini-Me , Dec 18, 2017 11:48 PM

Similar mass deception was in play to start the Iraq war as well. Constant bombardment led to public consensus and even the liberal New York Times endorsed the war. Whenever we see mass hysteria about something new, we should just go with the flow and not ask any questions at all. It is best for retaining sanity in this dumbed down and getting more dumber world.

Anunnaki , Dec 18, 2017 11:31 PM

Susan Rice and Obama should be indicted for illegally wiretapping Trump Towers for the express purpose of finding oppo research to help Hellary's late term abortiion of a campaign

Tapeworm -> Anunnaki , Dec 19, 2017 8:25 AM

This one is deeper but well laid out. Comey & Mueller Ignored McCabe's Ties to Russian Crime Figures & His Reported Tampering in Russian FBI Cases, Files

https://truepundit.com/comey-mueller-ignored-mccabes-ties-to-russian-cri...

I damned near insist that y'all read this one. Please???

Cardinal Fang , Dec 18, 2017 11:40 PM

Great read, loved the 'Imperial City's immune system' analogy...

I disagree about the economy though.

It feels strange to me that the architect of the Reagan Revolution is unable to see the makings of another revolution, the Trump Revolution.

We have had 10-20 years of pent up demand in the economy and instead of electing another neo-Marxist Alynski acolyte, the American people elected a hard charging anti-establishment bull in a China shop.

Surely Dave can see the potential.

It kills me when people are surprised by a 12 month, 5000 point run up on Wall Street.

For God's sake the United States was run by a fucking commie for 8 years, what the fuck did you think was gonna happen?

Jeez

GoldHermit , Dec 18, 2017 11:58 PM

America is divided and will remain divided. I think it will last at least for the next 50 years, maybe longer. The best way out is to limit the federal government and give each state more responsibility. States can succeed or fail on their own. People will be free to move where they want.

Not My Real Name -> GoldHermit , Dec 19, 2017 1:21 AM

"The best way out is to limit the federal government and give each state more responsibility."

Oh, you mean follow the Constitution as it was written. Good one, Hermit!

bh2 , Dec 19, 2017 12:01 AM

Somewhere there is a FISA judge who should be defrocked and exposed as a fraud. No sober judge would accept such evidence for any purpose, much less authorizing government snooping on a major party candidate for president.

MrSteve -> bh2 , Dec 19, 2017 12:29 AM

This makes FISA a totalitarian joke and that should be investigated.

RonBananas , Dec 19, 2017 4:51 AM

The CIA holds all the videos from Jeff Epstein's Island (20 documented trips by Bill, 6 documented trips by Hillary), I'm sure Bill doing a 12 year old, Hillary and Huma doing an 8 year old girl together, etc. So what are they willing to do for the CIA? Anything at any cost, getting caught red handed with a dossier is chump change when you look at the big picture..they don't care and will do anything...ANYTHING to get rid of Trump.

This is the only reason they are so frantic. There is absolutely no other reason they would play at this level.

Pol Pot -> RonBananas , Dec 19, 2017 4:57 AM

Correct on all except it's the Mossad and not the CIA who ran flight Epstein.

shutterbug , Dec 19, 2017 5:47 AM

Trump is gone in a few months or the DoJ, FBI and all others connected to FBI-gate are prosecuted...

Session's (in-)action will be crucial to one of these paths...

Stud Duck , Dec 19, 2017 6:42 AM

As always, Dave puts it all into prospective for even the brain dead. Ya think Joe and his gang will be talking about this article on their morning talk show today?? I wonder how Brezenski's daughter is going to tell daddy that the gig is up and they may want to look into packing a boogie bag just to play it safe?

David Stockman is a flame of hope in a world of dark machievellian thought!

Occams_Razor_Trader , Dec 19, 2017 7:25 AM

Why did the alt media and the msm all stop reportinmg that McCabe's wife recieved 700 thousand dollars from Terry McAulife (former Clinton campaign manager times 2!) for a Virginia State Senate run? Quid pro quo? Oh no, never the up and up DemonRats.

So when I hear that the conversation was held in McCabe's office- I want to puke first then start building the gallows.

MATA HAIRY , Dec 19, 2017 7:34 AM

fucken brilliant article!! There is a lot I don't like about trump (some of which stockman discusses above), but as a retired govt worker, I can tell you that he right about what he is saying here.

insanelysane , Dec 19, 2017 8:14 AM

One little tidbit that has been lost in all of this:

If the FBI was willing to use their power to back Hillary and defeat Trump at the national level, what did they try to do in McCabe's wife's state senate campaign? She is a pediatrician and she ran for state senate. ??? WTF is that about? She's not only a doctor but a doctor for children. Those people are usually wired to help people. Yet she was going to for-go being a doctor for a state senate position. ??? And the DNC forked over $700,000 to put her on the map.

I'm sure the people meeting daily in Andy's office were not pleased with the voter resistance to his wife and to Hillary. The FBI needs to be shut down. They have become an opposition research firm for the DNC. Even if they can't find dirt on candidates using the NSA database, they are able to tap that database to find out political strategies in real time on opposition The fish is rotten from the head down to the tail.

unklemunky , Dec 19, 2017 8:20 AM

No matter what article you read here, and don't get me wrong, I love the insight, but every fucking article is "it's all over. America is doomed, the petro dollar days are over, China China China. It's getting a bit old. The charts and graphs about stock market collapse......it becoming an old record that needs changed. If I say it's going to rain every fucking day, at some point I will be right. That doesn't make me a genius....it makes me persistent.

insanelysane , Dec 19, 2017 8:24 AM

It's a Deep State mess and Sessions is trying his best as he cowers in a corner sucking his thumb.

If they continue to go after Trump, the FBI is going to be found guilty of violating the Hatch Act by exonerating Hillary. See burner phones. See writing the conclusion in May when the investigation supposedly ended with Hillary's interview on July 3rd. The FBI will also be exposed for sedition as they then carried out the phony Russiagate investigation as their "insurance policy."

However, they have created an expectation with the left that Trump and his minions will be brought to "justice." If we thought the Left didn't handle losing the election well, they will not be pleased at losing Russiagate.

MrBoompi , Dec 19, 2017 4:25 PM

How dare anyone contradict or go against the wishes of ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, or MSNBC? Don't you know they understand what's best for us?

[Dec 17, 2017] Congress hearing reveal the brazen attempt to defeat and then depose Trump by employers of FBI, CIA and the Department of Justice

Set of YouTube video on the subject. Some exchanges (especially the first two) are very interesting indeed. Although Rosenstein mostly ignored the questions.
There are several facts which suggest that employees of CIA, the Department of Justice, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), sympathetic to the neoliberal/globalist wing of Democrat Party (Clinton wing), used the power of their offices and (with the assistance of foreign nationals) tried to influence the 2016 election in favor of Hillary Clinton, first to exonerate her and then obtain information to prevent the election of Donald Trump, to collect "insurance" -- compromising materials on him in case he win, and after his surprise win, to provide a basis for his impeachment and removal from the Office by forcing on his administration the Special Prosecutor.
From the Congressional investigations involving the Department of Justice and the FBI it looks like that those institutions are protecting themselves at the expense of transparency and accountability to the American people.
In other words, the government employees involved consider the survival of the Deep State more important than the survival of the Constitution. That is the definition of national security state.
Dec 16, 2017 | youtube.com

[Dec 17, 2017] President Trump: I'm Not Considering Firing Robert Mueller, But It's Not Looking Good

This is a political battle between two faction of oligarchy. Mueller represents Clinton wing: neoliberal globalists and neocons.
Dec 17, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
rumors , denials, whistleblowers , backlash , demands, threats, lies , bias, and anti-bias surrounding Robert Mueller and his investigation, President Trump said Sunday that he is not considering firing the Special Counsel.

"No, I'm not," Trump told reporters, when asked if he intended to fire Mueller, according to Politico .

The president was returning to the White House from a weekend at the Camp David presidential retreat.

Trump's allies complained this weekend about the way Mueller's team went about obtaining from the presidential transition. Mueller's spokesman Peter Carr said Sunday that the office had followed appropriate steps to obtain the transition emails. Pro-Trump lawmakers and pundits also have accused the special counsel's office of bias after it was revealed that two FBI officials who previously served on Mueller's team had exchanged anti-Trump text messages.

And while Trump said "I'm not," Axios notes that he did criticize the fact that Mueller accessed "many tens of thousands" of emails from the presidential transition, saying it was "not looking good."

Son of Loki -> DingleBarryObummer , Dec 17, 2017 6:46 PM

Who is Seth Rich?

jeff montanye -> Son of Loki , Dec 17, 2017 8:45 PM

seth? he was the guy that stole the dnc and podesta emails (well at least the dnc emails) and got them to julian assange. after he was murdered (well at least shot twice) on the streets of d.c. (he actually died in a hospital; probably bears some looking into), julian offered a reward for info on it, making many believe he was wiki's source.

seymour hersh, who followed the case closely, thinks the same, but agrees with the d.c. police that he was just mugged, not shot by say hillary and podesta using imran awan or something. http://archive.is/lD4BV if so, for a lucky lady that hillary clinton has some real bad luck. but it is poetically fitting that someone who actually killed dozens of people as a private citizen (and maybe a million as a public servant), would be convicted in the public's eye of the one she didn't really do.

first as tragedy, then as farce.

azusgm -> shitshitshit , Dec 17, 2017 8:47 PM

YO!!! TYLERS!! OVER HERE.

Looks like Andrew McCabe may be a double agent!!!!!

https://truepundit.com/comey-mueller-ignored-mccabes-ties-to-russian-cri...

grunk , Dec 17, 2017 6:16 PM

Mueller WANTS Trump to fire him.

It's Mueller's only face-saving way out of this cluster fuck.

Kayman -> grunk , Dec 17, 2017 6:17 PM

Mueller has painted himself into a cesspool that is exploding. If he had an ounce of sense or honor he would get the eff out before he has to start covering his own tracks. But don't bet on Mueller doing the right thing. His pals in politics and the press have made him out to be some kind of saint when he really is all t'aint, no saint (don't ask me what t'aint is, ask someone else.)

Don't fire Mueller now- the cesspool is bursting at the seems and Mueller is standing right under it.

grunk , Dec 17, 2017 6:14 PM

Robert Mueller is D.C.'s Tomás de Torquemada.

Mzhen , Dec 17, 2017 8:04 PM

It makes little sense to me that if Seth Rich was an idealistic young man, standing on principle and conviction, who along with his brother contacted WikiLeaks and arranged to give it evidence of Hillary's and Debbie's treachery against Sanders, why he would then have been reported to be looking forward to joining the Hillary campaign staff in the Brooklyn headquarters.

CrowdStrike (run by Shawn Henry, who is a former FBI official, promoted by Mueller), which provided the narrative to the DNC that the "Russians did it," has never been independently verified in their conclusions by the FBI. Or Mueller. Pull that thread and the sweater starts to unravel.

Kelley , Dec 17, 2017 9:26 PM

Mueller doesn't have it in him to step aside. Therefore he needs to be indicted for prosecutorial abuse. Slap his ass down hard. Handcuffs would be a nice touch.

Mueller didn't oppose the raid of Paul Manafort at 5 a.m. in the morning with guns drawn. Sounds like a good law enforcement technique for the buzzard.

[Dec 17, 2017] The FBI Is Not Your Friend by Sheldon Richman

Notable quotes:
"... ask that Russia not escalate tensions ..."
"... Russia not vote to condemn Israel ..."
"... What about the Logan Act ? The Act, enacted in 1799, around the time of the infamous Alien and Sedition Acts, prohibits private citizens from unauthorized "correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both." ..."
"... Right off the bat, the Act appears to violate freedom of speech. And as Parry writes, "That law was never intended to apply to incoming officials in the transition period between elected presidential administrations." ..."
"... I hold no brief for Flynn, whose conduct while working for Gen. Stanley McChrystal in Afghanistan, his dubious efforts on behalf of Turkey's strongman Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and his apparent financial conflicts of interest are enough to make anyone cringe. But that cannot justify what the FBI did in this plea case. ..."
"... Government law-enforcement agencies should not be allowed to administer credibility tests to Americans or others. If they have evidence of real ..."
Dec 16, 2017 | original.antiwar.com
One of the unfortunate ironies of the manufactured "Russiagate" controversy is the perception of the FBI as a friend of liberty and justice. But the FBI has never been a friend of liberty and justice. Rather, as James Bovard writes , it "has a long record of both deceit and incompetence. Five years ago, Americans learned that the FBI was teaching its agents that 'the FBI has the ability to bend or suspend the law to impinge on the freedom of others.' This has practically been the Bureau's motif since its creation in 1908 . The FBI has always used its 'good guy' image to keep a lid on its crimes."

Bovard has made a vocation of cataloging the FBI's many offenses against liberty and justice, for which we are forever in his debt.

Things are certainly not different today. Take the case of Michael Flynn, the retired lieutenant general who spent less than a month as Donald Trump's national-security adviser. Flynn has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in connection with conversations he had with Russia's then-ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak, between Trump's election and inauguration. One need not be an admirer of Flynn – and for many reasons I certainly am not – to be disturbed by how the FBI has handled this case.

One ought to be immediately suspicious whenever someone is charged with or pleads guilty to lying to the FBI without any underlying crime being charged. Former assistant U.S. attorney Andrew C. McCarthy points out :

When a prosecutor has a cooperator who was an accomplice in a major criminal scheme, the cooperator is made to plead guilty to the scheme. This is critical because it proves the existence of the scheme. In his guilty-plea allocution (the part of a plea proceeding in which the defendant admits what he did that makes him guilty), the accomplice explains the scheme and the actions taken by himself and his co-conspirators to carry it out. This goes a long way toward proving the case against all of the subjects of the investigation.

That is not happening in Flynn's situation. Instead, like [former Trump foreign-policy "adviser" George] Papadopoulos, he is being permitted to plead guilty to a mere process crime.

When the FBI questioned Flynn about his conversations with Kislyak, it already had the transcripts of those conversations – the government eavesdrops on the representatives of foreign governments, among others, and Flynn had been identified, or "unmasked," as the ambassador's conversation partner. The FBI could have simply told Flynn the transcripts contained evidence of a crime (assuming for the sake of argument they did) and charged him with violating the Logan Act or whatever else the FBI had in mind.

But that's not what happened. Instead, the FBI asked Flynn about his conversations with Kislyak, apparently to test him. If he lied (which would mean he's pretty stupid since he once ran the Defense Intelligence Agency and must have known about the transcripts!) or had a bad memory, he could have been charged with lying to the FBI.

As investigative reporter Robert Parry explains :

What is arguably most disturbing about this case is that then-National Security Adviser Flynn was pushed into a perjury trap by Obama administration holdovers at the Justice Department who concocted an unorthodox legal rationale for subjecting Flynn to an FBI interrogation four days after he took office, testing Flynn's recollection of the conversations while the FBI agents had transcripts of the calls intercepted by the National Security Agency.

In other words, the Justice Department wasn't seeking information about what Flynn said to Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak – the intelligence agencies already had that information. Instead, Flynn was being quizzed on his precise recollection of the conversations and nailed for lying when his recollections deviated from the transcripts.

For Americans who worry about how the pervasive surveillance powers of the US government could be put to use criminalizing otherwise constitutionally protected speech and political associations, Flynn's prosecution represents a troubling precedent.

Why didn't the FBI charge Flynn with an underlying crime? It might be because his conversations with Kislyak were not criminal. McCarthy writes:

A breaking report from ABC News indicates that Flynn is prepared to testify that Trump directed him to make contact with the Russians – initially to lay the groundwork for mutual efforts against ISIS in Syria. That, however, is exactly the sort of thing the incoming national-security adviser is supposed to do in a transition phase between administrations. If it were part of the basis for a "collusion" case arising out of Russia's election meddling, then Flynn would not be pleading guilty to a process crime – he'd be pleading guilty to an espionage conspiracy.

David Stockman shows that the FBI and Special Counsel Robert Mueller themselves indicate the Flynn-Kislyak conversations contained no evidence of criminal behavior.

Flynn spoke to Kislyak to ask that Russia not escalate tensions after President Obama imposed sanctions last December for the alleged election meddling and to ask that Russia not vote to condemn Israel , via a UN Security Council resolution, for its illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian land. In other words, not only were Flynn's discussions with Kislyak unexceptional – presidential transition-team foreign-policy officials have spoken with representatives of other governments in the past – but the content of those discussions should have raised no suspicions. Would non-escalation of the sanctions controversy or a UN veto have undermined Obama's foreign policy? I don't see how. (True, the Obama administration abstained on the resolution, but would Obama have objected had Russia vetoed it? By the way, Russia voted for it, and the resolution passed, as it should have.)

The Flynn plea certainly does nothing to indicate "collusion" with the Russians. For one thing, the conversations were after the election. And perhaps more important, Kislyak was not looking for favors from Flynn; on the contrary, Flynn was lobbying the Russians (successfully on the sanctions – Vladimir Putin did not retaliate – and unsuccessfully on the UN resolution.) Where's the evidence of Russian influence on the Trump team? There was foreign influence, but it was from Israel, a regular meddler in the American political process . All indications are that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked Trump son-in-law and special envoy to everywhere Jared Kushner to lobby the world to defeat the UN resolution. Kushner, who has helped finance illegal Israeli settlements , then directed Flynn to call every Security Council member, not just Russia.

What about the Logan Act ? The Act, enacted in 1799, around the time of the infamous Alien and Sedition Acts, prohibits private citizens from unauthorized "correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both."

Right off the bat, the Act appears to violate freedom of speech. And as Parry writes, "That law was never intended to apply to incoming officials in the transition period between elected presidential administrations."

Note also that only two indictments have been brought in 218 years: in 1803 and 1852. Both cases were dropped. Far more serious contacts with foreign governments have occurred. In 1968 Republican presidential candidate Richard Nixon (with help from Henry Kissinger who was working in the Johnson administration) had a representative persuade the president of South Vietnam to boycott the peace talks President Lyndon Johnson had been arranging with North Vietnam. That decision most likely prolonged the Vietnam war and resulted in combat deaths that would not have occurred. Unlike the Flynn case, Nixon's action undercut the sitting president's policy and, more important, the interests of the American people.

I hold no brief for Flynn, whose conduct while working for Gen. Stanley McChrystal in Afghanistan, his dubious efforts on behalf of Turkey's strongman Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and his apparent financial conflicts of interest are enough to make anyone cringe. But that cannot justify what the FBI did in this plea case.

Government law-enforcement agencies should not be allowed to administer credibility tests to Americans or others. If they have evidence of real offenses against persons and property, bring charges. Otherwise, leave us all alone.

Sheldon Richman is the executive editor of The Libertarian Institute , senior fellow and chair of the trustees of the Center for a Stateless Society , and a contributing editor at Antiwar.com . He is the former senior editor at the Cato Institute and Institute for Humane Studies, former editor of The Freeman , published by the Foundation for Economic Education , and former vice president at the Future of Freedom Foundation . His latest book is America's Counter-Revolution: The Constitution Revisited .

[Dec 17, 2017] Mission Creep Mueller Grand Jury Fishing for Evidence Unrelated to Russian Interference Probe

As "any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump; any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation" does not have time frame they are not limited to election campaign and allow fishing expedition into Trump business dealings.
Notable quotes:
"... any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump; ..."
"... any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation; ..."
Aug 04, 2017 | www.breitbart.com

After this striking admission, in effect acknowledging the weakness of the "Russian collusion" narrative more than year into the investigation and media hysteria, CNN goes on to report that these claimed grand jury subpoenas extend completely outside the scope of the supposed "Russia" investigation. CNN describes some subpoenas as "unconnected to the 2016 elections" and gives examples, including the tenant lists of Trump Organization properties and documents related to the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow.

For the record, according to his order of appointment , Mueller's independent investigation was to be limited to:

(i) any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump; and
(ii) any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation; and
(iii) any other matters within the scope of 28 C.F.R. §600.4(a).

Regulation 28 C.F.R. §600.4(a) is part of the federal regulations authorizing special counsels. It expands a special counsel's jurisdiction to crimes, such as perjury or obstruction of justice, that interfere with his original named responsibility.

[Dec 17, 2017] Senator John Cornyn Questions Legitimacy of Robert Mueller Probe

Notable quotes:
"... Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) caused a stir late Friday when he questioned the legitimacy of the investigation being conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into potential Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. ..."
"... Washington Post ..."
Dec 17, 2017 | www.breitbart.com

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) caused a stir late Friday when he questioned the legitimacy of the investigation being conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into potential Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Cornyn spoke out via Twitter, in response to a tweet by former Attorney General Eric Holder, who defended Mueller against criticism and against efforts to urge the president to remove him from his post.

Speaking on behalf of the vast majority of the American people, Republicans in Congress be forewarned:any attempt to remove Bob Mueller will not be tolerated.These are BS attacks on him/his staff that are blatantly political-designed to hide the real wrongdoing. Country not party

-- Eric Holder (@EricHolder) December 14, 2017

In response, Cornyn tweeted to Holder, "You don't" (referring to Holder's claim to be speaking "on behalf of the vast majority of the American people."

He added later that "Mueller needs to clean house of partisans," referring to reports that FBI agent Peter Strzok had been removed from the investigation due to anti-Trump texts, and that other lawyers on the Mueller team have expressed strongly anti-Trump feelings or supported the campaign of his 2016 opponent, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Later, asked by the Washington Post 's in-house liberal columnist, Greg Sargent, whether he would accept the legitimacy of Mueller's investigation, Cornyn suggested that would depend on the outcome:

Makes sense to me to wait to see what they are first https://t.co/9lCqpYujKN

-- Senator JohnCornyn (@JohnCornyn) December 16, 2017

The left-wing HuffPost translated that remark as meaning that Cornyn would only consider the probe legitimate if "if Republicans like his findings."

However, a more generous interpretation would be that Cornyn would wait to see if Mueller remained within his mandate, or used his sweeping powers to investigated unrelated matters.

[Dec 17, 2017] Rosenstein watches as Mueller's witch hunt veers out of control by Sean Hannity

Dec 17, 2017 | www.foxnews.com

The Russia investigation being overseen by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is beyond corrupt, beyond political and has now turned into an open-ended fishing expedition.

Rosenstein, who like Special Counsel Robert Mueller, has glaring, inexcusable conflicts of interest in the case, insisted to Fox News' Chris Wallace that he will keep Mueller from expanding his s not on a witch hunt.

"If he finds evidence of a crime that's within in the scope of what Director Mueller and I have agreed is the appropriate scope of this investigation, then he can," Rosenstein said on "Fox News Sunday." "If it's something outside that scope, he needs to come to the acting attorney general, at this time me, for permission to expand his investigation."

Rosenstein says he won't let the special counsel turn into a fishing expedition? It already has. The whole investigation was supposed to be about President Trump's campaign supposedly colluding with the Russians. This has gone on 11 months, no smoking gun proving it ever surfaced.

Yet, instead of ending it there, Mueller is reportedly now looking into the finances of President Trump and the Trump Organization and associates of President Trump. He has impaneled a grand jury in Washington, D.C., where the president got a little over four percent of the vote.

What Rosenstein really said was that he has now given Mueller the green light to do whatever he wants. Even respected legal scholar Jonathan Turley, a Democrat, has said Rosenstein needs to recuse himself.

After all, Rosenstein is likely going to be a witness in the investigation that he himself caused because he took the lead in writing the letter to President Trump on why former FBI Director James Comey should be fired. Mueller reportedly regards that as possible obstruction of justice.

Rosenstein is also the guy who appointed Robert Mueller and apparently either didn't know or didn't care about the fact that the day before he was named special counsel, Mueller interviewed with President Trump for the FBI director's job. You can't make this up.

Rosenstein has sat by while Mueller, with an unlimited budget, has assembled a team of 16 lawyers. Half have made political donations, shockingly, all to Democrats. How is that OK? If the tables were turned, would a Democrat allow a special counsel to only appoint Republican donors?

It all comes down to this: Does Rod Rosenstein know what is going to happen if Mueller's mission creep continues to go unchecked? How does he think voters are going to feel? How many Trump supporters will feel robbed of their right and their vote in the free election of the president of the United States?

That would be bad for the country. It would be bad for the system of justice. And it would be bad for anyone who believes in a constitutional republic.

Adapted from Sean Hannity's monologue on "Hannity," Aug. 7, 2017

Sean Hannity currently serves as host of FOX News Channel's (FNC) Hannity (weekdays 9-10PM/ET) . He joined the network in 1996 and is based in New York. Click here for more information on Sean

[Dec 17, 2017] Fox News' Jesse Watters We May Have an Anti-Trump 'Coup on Our Hands in America'

Robert Mueller does have massive conflict of interest -- Strzok-gate proves his inability to run a dispassionate investigation
Notable quotes:
"... we may now have proof the investigation was weaponized to destroy his presidency for partisan political purposes and to disenfranchise millions of American voters. Now, if that's true, we have a coup on our hands in America." ..."
Dec 17, 2017 | www.breitbart.com

Waters said, "The investigation into Donald Trump's campaign has been crooked from the jump. But the scary part is we may now have proof the investigation was weaponized to destroy his presidency for partisan political purposes and to disenfranchise millions of American voters. Now, if that's true, we have a coup on our hands in America."

[Dec 17, 2017] Unlike Nixon, Trump will not go quietly

Notable quotes:
"... Flynn asked Kislyak for help in blocking or postponing a Security Council resolution denouncing Israel, and to tell Vladimir Putin not to go ballistic over President Obama's expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats. This is what security advisers do. Why Flynn let himself be ensnared in a perjury trap, when he had to know his calls were recorded, is puzzling. ..."
"... Second, it is said Trump obstructed justice when he fired FBI Director James Comey for refusing to cut slack for Flynn. But even Comey admits Trump acted within his authority. And Comey had usurped the authority of Justice Department prosecutors when he announced in July 2016 that Hillary Clinton ought not to be prosecuted for having been "extremely careless" in transmitting security secrets over her private email server. We now know that the first draft of Comey's statement described Clinton as "grossly negligent," the precise statute language for an indictment. ..."
"... Comey has also admitted he leaked to The New York Times details of a one-on-one with Trump to trigger the naming of a special counsel -- to go after Trump. And that assignment somehow fell to Comey's predecessor, friend, and confidant Robert Mueller. Mueller swiftly hired half a dozen prosecutorial bulldogs who had been Clinton contributors, and Andrew Weinstein, a Trump hater who had congratulated Acting Attorney General Sally Yates for refusing to carry out Trump's travel ban. FBI official Peter Strzok had to be been removed from the Mueller probe for hatred of Trump manifest in emails to his FBI lady friend. Strzok was also involved in the investigation of Clinton's email server and is said to have been the one who persuaded Comey to tone down his language about her misconduct, and let Hillary walk. ..."
"... There are other reasons to believe Trump may survive the deep state-media conspiracy to break his presidency, overturn his mandate, and reinstate a discredited establishment. Trump has Fox News and fighting congressmen behind him and the mainstream media is deeply distrusted and widely detested. And there is no Democratic House to impeach him or Democratic Senate to convict him. Moreover, Trump is not Nixon, who, like Charles I, accepted his fate and let the executioner's sword fall with dignity. If Trump goes, one imagines, he will not go quietly. ..."
"... I think the surprise is the degree and extent to which he is surrounded by hostile elements pretending to be disloyal and even when revealed like Comey and Sessions and Rosenstein they cannot be dislodged without great cost. ..."
"... The balance of evidence does not fall on Trump. The preponderance of evidence from Wasserman Schultz and her Pakistani technicians, from rigging the DNC against Sanders, from the McCain/FBI Dossier to justify wiretapping the RNC candidate, the pay for play Clinton Foundation and Clinton bankrolling the DNC in exchange for full control of the party, murdered members of the DNC like Seth Rich, the collusion between the CIA, FBI, DOJ, IRS, State Department and White House, etc etc etc. ..."
"... Beyond the Mueller investigation is the character assassination which has also backfired proving there are far more democrats and democratic donors engaged in rape, pedophilia and sexual harassment which is more of the same type of character assassination Hillary used by calling Trump and his base deplorables. ..."
"... People in the DNC and the Federal Govt were scared of Bill and Hillary Clinton and Obama but I truly think the DNC is under-estimating the degree they should be afraid of Trump. ..."
"... Of course, in reality there was NO hack. The emails were LEAKED by someone within the DNC who was utterly disgusted with the corruption and the sabotaging of Sanders nomination campaign to prevent any threat to the coronation of Empress Shrillary. ..."
"... IMHO its very likely that the leaker was indeed Seth Rich. Does anyone really believe in a "botched robbery" were the thief didn't steal his wallet or phone or watch? ..."
"... At this point there is an ocean of evidence that says Russia did NOTHING at all. More and more the revelations are that the Clinton slime machine moved on from Bernie Sanders to Trump without breaking stride. ..."
"... The Mueller shenanigans have for months been laid out for all to see by Andrew C. McCarthy, who ironically is a confirmed Putin-hater. More recently Victor Davis Hanson weighed in at long last, and it was a doozy. ..."
"... The Muller team is loaded with rabid Trump haters, which implies he either biased and out to get Trump, or just dumb. It has been very obvious from the moment Trump won the election that a large contingent of the government establishment has been determined to find a way to force him from office. ..."
"... My primary complaint with Trump is that in foreign policy, he has done nothing but endorse and continue the murderous and shameful policies of his predecessors: back Israel unequivocally, in spite of their record of aggression, back Saudi Arabia, ignoring the absolute evil of their country, pretend that Russia and Iran are the greatest evil in the world, with no evidence to support it. If there is a behind the scenes deep state, it consists of those who manage to continue this pattern, no matter if the president is an Evangelical or a Marxist. Foreign policy aside, he does have the interests of the common man at heart, and a very enthusiastic backing from "Joe six-pack" America, the America the left loathes. ..."
"... Listen to the speakers at political rallies, if they are only demonizing the other side in an unfocussed and vague way, this is what they are doing. It is a strategy of "divide and conquer." ..."
"... Those, who vote for one party or the other above all else, no matter whom the party nominates or what the party does, lawful or not, are engaging in the same political factionalism, about which Washington warned. Both parties have to be made to protect the Constitution and respect the rule of law. That is much more important than which party wins. At this point, neither party gives much of a damn about the Constitution or the law. The only goal is to win at any cost, vying for the attention of their globalist string-pullers. ..."
Dec 17, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Flynn asked Kislyak for help in blocking or postponing a Security Council resolution denouncing Israel, and to tell Vladimir Putin not to go ballistic over President Obama's expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats. This is what security advisers do. Why Flynn let himself be ensnared in a perjury trap, when he had to know his calls were recorded, is puzzling.

Second, it is said Trump obstructed justice when he fired FBI Director James Comey for refusing to cut slack for Flynn. But even Comey admits Trump acted within his authority. And Comey had usurped the authority of Justice Department prosecutors when he announced in July 2016 that Hillary Clinton ought not to be prosecuted for having been "extremely careless" in transmitting security secrets over her private email server. We now know that the first draft of Comey's statement described Clinton as "grossly negligent," the precise statute language for an indictment.

We also now know that helping to edit Comey's first draft to soften its impact was Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe. His wife, Jill McCabe, a candidate for state senate in Virginia, received $467,000 in campaign contributions from the PAC of Clinton bundler Terry McAuliffe.

Comey has also admitted he leaked to The New York Times details of a one-on-one with Trump to trigger the naming of a special counsel -- to go after Trump. And that assignment somehow fell to Comey's predecessor, friend, and confidant Robert Mueller. Mueller swiftly hired half a dozen prosecutorial bulldogs who had been Clinton contributors, and Andrew Weinstein, a Trump hater who had congratulated Acting Attorney General Sally Yates for refusing to carry out Trump's travel ban. FBI official Peter Strzok had to be been removed from the Mueller probe for hatred of Trump manifest in emails to his FBI lady friend. Strzok was also involved in the investigation of Clinton's email server and is said to have been the one who persuaded Comey to tone down his language about her misconduct, and let Hillary walk.

In Mueller's tenure, still no Trump tie to the hacking of the DNC has been found. But a connection between Hillary's campaign and Russian spies -- to find dirt to smear and destroy Trump and his campaign -- has been fairly well established.

By June 2016, the Clinton campaign and DNC had begun shoveling millions of dollars to the Perkins Coie law firm, which had hired the oppo research firm Fusion GPS, to go dirt-diving on Trump. Fusion contacted ex-British MI6 spy Christopher Steele, who had ties to former KGB and FSB intelligence agents in Russia. They began to feed Steele, who fed Fusion, which fed the U.S. anti-Trump media with the alleged dirty deeds of Trump in Moscow hotels. While the truth of the dirty dossier has never been established, Comey's FBI rose like a hungry trout on learning of its contents. There are credible allegations Comey's FBI sought to hire Steele and used the dirt in his dossier to broaden the investigation of Trump -- and that its contents were also used to justify FISA warrants on Trump and his people.

This week, we learned that the Justice Department's Bruce Ohr had contacts with Fusion during the campaign, while his wife actually worked at Fusion investigating Trump. This thing is starting to stink.

Is the Trump investigation the rotten fruit of a poisoned tree? Is Mueller's Dump Trump team investigating the wrong campaign?

There are other reasons to believe Trump may survive the deep state-media conspiracy to break his presidency, overturn his mandate, and reinstate a discredited establishment. Trump has Fox News and fighting congressmen behind him and the mainstream media is deeply distrusted and widely detested. And there is no Democratic House to impeach him or Democratic Senate to convict him. Moreover, Trump is not Nixon, who, like Charles I, accepted his fate and let the executioner's sword fall with dignity. If Trump goes, one imagines, he will not go quietly.

In the words of the great Jerry Lee Lewis, there's gonna be a "whole lotta shakin' goin' on."

LouisM December 14, 2017 at 11:38 pm

Trump has had to work with corrupt officials in govt, overwhelming bureaucracy, unions, media and criminal elements. All present in anti-Trump DC.

I think the surprise is the degree and extent to which he is surrounded by hostile elements pretending to be disloyal and even when revealed like Comey and Sessions and Rosenstein they cannot be dislodged without great cost.

The balance of evidence does not fall on Trump. The preponderance of evidence from Wasserman Schultz and her Pakistani technicians, from rigging the DNC against Sanders, from the McCain/FBI Dossier to justify wiretapping the RNC candidate, the pay for play Clinton Foundation and Clinton bankrolling the DNC in exchange for full control of the party, murdered members of the DNC like Seth Rich, the collusion between the CIA, FBI, DOJ, IRS, State Department and White House, etc etc etc.

There is no equivalent trail of collusion, corruption, fraud, slander, sedition etc from Trump, the GOP or the Conservative Party while the DNC and the Mueller investigation reeks.

Beyond the Mueller investigation is the character assassination which has also backfired proving there are far more democrats and democratic donors engaged in rape, pedophilia and sexual harassment which is more of the same type of character assassination Hillary used by calling Trump and his base deplorables.

I think Trump is playing nice and being patient. He is fighting back but with great restraint. I don't think Trump has pulled out all guns. My guess, if and when this does not work, then Sessions and Rosenstein will be fired and replaced with people who will have special prosecutors investigate the Mueller investigation, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Obama, the FBI and the DOJ. Imagine how devastating it would be to release information proving Bill Clintons rapes and murders. Hillary may be a master at deflection and obfuscation but Trump will scorch and burn. Of this I have no doubt. Infact, it would not surprise me if Trump has someone in the intelligence community reporting directly to him and covertly performing these investigations so Trump can either scorch and burn in the media, in the press room or to appoint special counsels for what I cited above.

People in the DNC and the Federal Govt were scared of Bill and Hillary Clinton and Obama but I truly think the DNC is under-estimating the degree they should be afraid of Trump.

Gazza , says: December 15, 2017 at 5:27 am
"In Mueller's tenure, still no Trump tie to the hacking of the DNC has been found."

Of course, in reality there was NO hack. The emails were LEAKED by someone within the DNC who was utterly disgusted with the corruption and the sabotaging of Sanders nomination campaign to prevent any threat to the coronation of Empress Shrillary.

IMHO its very likely that the leaker was indeed Seth Rich. Does anyone really believe in a "botched robbery" were the thief didn't steal his wallet or phone or watch?

Dan Green , says: December 15, 2017 at 9:18 am
The media tells us this administrations support is waning, so impeachment is a hot topic. I am not convinced the American people en mass will support the process.
SteveK9 , says: December 15, 2017 at 2:28 pm
Most of these comments are almost as ridiculous as 'RussiaGate' itself. One must have a very strong bias to believe any of this (I am a lifelong Democrat, but I'm still able to think).

At this point there is an ocean of evidence that says Russia did NOTHING at all. More and more the revelations are that the Clinton slime machine moved on from Bernie Sanders to Trump without breaking stride.

Ken Zaretzke , says: December 15, 2017 at 5:11 pm
"Unfortunately, your nay-sayers seem confined to calling you a "Do-Do Head" and other remarks more suited to a preschool classroom."

Amen to that. They might be willfully ignorant. The Mueller shenanigans have for months been laid out for all to see by Andrew C. McCarthy, who ironically is a confirmed Putin-hater. More recently Victor Davis Hanson weighed in at long last, and it was a doozy.

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/454543/mueller-investigation-too-many-anti-trump-coincidences

Saying Robert Mueller is a pillar of integrity is like saying George Will is a brilliant thinker–it's Beltway bushwa.

Honorable Shark , says: December 15, 2017 at 6:11 pm
The neocons forgot that Richard Nixon saved Israel in the 1973 war. He emptied the NATO reserves to replenish their lost weapons. Had he not done this, maybe a negotiated peace based on a fair fight would have negated many of the problems we face today? Then Ford came along and they realized Oops! A mistake has been made. Carter stopped drinking the neocon KoolAide when the facts became irrefutable. Comparing Nixon to Trump is a non-starter. Nixon had an incredibly high-IQ and he was pro-America first, second, .nth.
EliteCommInc. , says: December 15, 2017 at 11:10 pm
I remain a huge fan of Pres Nixon. I often think he should have fought it out. Having chosen not to do so – he did indeed go quietly. And he did so for reasons unrelated to Watergate.

He also remains one of the most astute and intelligent men we have ever had in the WH. Had he been an insider, he would not have had faced the storm that came by way a lot of hyperbolic nonsense. It easy to forget how much he and his admin accomplished despite the period.

I remain supportive of Pres. Trump and despite areas of disagreement, I have yet to see any evidence that would even hint that he should resign. I don't think there's any evidence that the country is uniquely on a path to destruction from Pres Trump admin.

-- -- -- -- -- --

"4 indictment and or guilt pleas. Nothing there you say?"

I don't think you grasp the breadth that a SP has. It is virtually limitless. That means one can indicted for something that is accused years before and totally unrelated to the original purposes of the appointment. It was that breadth that bothered Pres. Nixon. And as it turned out he was concerned with good reason.

-- -- -- -- -- -

"Middle East was causing a huge recession that led to Democratic wave in 1974."

The die were cast, despite all of the issues, Pres Nixon out maneuvered and outsmarted his critics on the issues and they bit one card, charges of misbehavior on the heels of a very contentious foreign policy. He could have only survived had he just chosen to readily give on the plotters and moved on. Pardoning them later.

His choice to protect his legacy in its entirety -- led to bad decisions, that fed the appearance of guilt -- when the tapes came out --

it was done, despite little of anything incriminating on them. He chose to depart quietly. And in the end, so nil was his accusations that he has had his tenure revived and I suspect with time, that will continue.

Molière , says: December 16, 2017 at 10:10 am
Here's a list of confirmed fake news concerning the "russiagate" (of course all going in the same direction):
  1. Trump team received access to DNC WikiLeaks files before they were released (CNN).
  2. Russia hacked into the U.S. electric grid to deprive Americans of heat during winter (Wash Post).
  3. An anonymous group (PropOrNot) documented how major U.S. political sites are Kremlin agents (Wash Post).
  4. WikiLeaks has a long, documented relationship with Putin (Guardian).
  5. A secret server between Trump and a Russian bank has been discovered (Slate).
  6. RT hacked C-SPAN and caused disruption in its broadcast (Fortune).
  7. Russians hacked into a Ukrainian artillery app (Crowdstrike).
  8. Russians attempted to hack elections systems in 21 states (multiple news outlets, echoing Homeland Security).
  9. Links have been found between Trump ally Anthony Scaramucci and a Russian investment fund under investigation (CNN).

Glenn Greenwald made an article about it. When we dig deep into the Russiagate it's not trump that we find but Brzezinski doctrine.

Peace from France

Stephen , says: December 16, 2017 at 10:13 am
The Muller team is loaded with rabid Trump haters, which implies he either biased and out to get Trump, or just dumb. It has been very obvious from the moment Trump won the election that a large contingent of the government establishment has been determined to find a way to force him from office.

This is an obvious truth, whether you want to call it a deep state conspiracy or something else. Trump is an imperfect man, but he has good ideas and plans for improving the life of the ordinary citizen.

One of the ways I know he is essentially decent is the hysterical hatred the left has for him. The left is the true enemy of this country, not Russia or radical Islam. In the past 50 years they have done great harm to this country.

The Conservative establishment has been utterly ineffective at stopping the destructive onslaght of the left, and in matters of foreign policy, have proven to be thoroughly corrupt and dishonest.

My primary complaint with Trump is that in foreign policy, he has done nothing but endorse and continue the murderous and shameful policies of his predecessors: back Israel unequivocally, in spite of their record of aggression, back Saudi Arabia, ignoring the absolute evil of their country, pretend that Russia and Iran are the greatest evil in the world, with no evidence to support it. If there is a behind the scenes deep state, it consists of those who manage to continue this pattern, no matter if the president is an Evangelical or a Marxist. Foreign policy aside, he does have the interests of the common man at heart, and a very enthusiastic backing from "Joe six-pack" America, the America the left loathes.

If Trump is successfully removed from office, I predict a breakout of serious unrest from the people.

DB , says: December 16, 2017 at 12:33 pm
Mr. Buchanan,

Do you have multiple personalities? One moment you are defending true conservatism and the next you seem to be supporting somebody because they have an R next to their name. Trump is a serious danger to our country. Far more than ISIS or any Muslim terrorists.

George Washington wrote a letter of farewell to the American People in 1796, in which he warned against the corruption of self-interested political parties. He called them political factions, but he is referring to the corruption and treasonous tendencies of the Democrat and Republican Parties of today, who are much more interested in the advancement of their party than the well-being of the Country, the protection of the Constitution or the rule of law.

Both of these now treasonous parties are funded and controlled by much the same global financial interests and are currently more loyal to their foreign paymasters -- which includes many foreign despots -- than they are to our country. The corruption of each of the two major political parties feeds on that of the other. Both parties have grown into foreign-controlled monsters. Individual Congressmen take orders from the party leadership, the lapdogs of their party bosses, instead of serving the interests of the nation.

The extreme partisanship and generalized demonization of members of the other party is a form of brainwashing that keeps Democrats and Republicans voting for their respective parties, no matter how corrupt the politicians of their own party have become. Listen to the speakers at political rallies, if they are only demonizing the other side in an unfocussed and vague way, this is what they are doing. It is a strategy of "divide and conquer." People should concentrate on specific misdeeds of individuals and not just be the cheerleaders of their own party. Both parties are parasitical entities feeding on the rotting carcass of America, which they have created.

Those, who vote for one party or the other above all else, no matter whom the party nominates or what the party does, lawful or not, are engaging in the same political factionalism, about which Washington warned. Both parties have to be made to protect the Constitution and respect the rule of law. That is much more important than which party wins. At this point, neither party gives much of a damn about the Constitution or the law. The only goal is to win at any cost, vying for the attention of their globalist string-pullers.

https://stop-obama-now.net/washingtons-farewell/

[Dec 16, 2017] Mueller Improperly Obtained Tens of Thousands Of Trump Transition Emails

And the coup attempt continues...
Notable quotes:
"... And the coup attempt continues... ..."
Dec 16, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

SILVERGEDDON , Dec 16, 2017 5:35 PM

Wake me up when Mueller starts working with Wiener's 600,000 strong kiddie porn email collection.

He might want to look at the Cankles erasure collection, as well as the Huma / Aswan Back Up Collection of dirty laundry as well.

just the tip -> SILVERGEDDON , Dec 16, 2017 5:39 PM

don't say that. we won't ever wake you.

Hal n back -> just the tip , Dec 16, 2017 6:44 PM

I have been Ill the last several weeks: who are the criminals?

toady -> Hal n back , Dec 16, 2017 7:32 PM

It's SO important to have all the supeanas in place before collecting any documents. I'm in the middle of a suit and people keep trying to rush... "I'm just gonna go over there and get a copy...."

"No, not until the lawyer says so!"

Apparently D.C. works by a different set of rules.... and they're blaming the idiots who gave up the documents, not the ones who are, and continue, to use them illegally. Alternate universe!

The Management -> toady , Dec 16, 2017 7:35 PM

At this point Jeff Sessions is going to go down as literally the biggest fucking douche bag in history if he doesnt do something - i mean ANYTHING - shuffle his feet / look busy ... get the group coffee & doughnuts - i'd settle for anything really...

Chuck Walla -> Hal n back , Dec 16, 2017 7:35 PM

"Cooperating"? I bet they were fucking gleeful in their wet dreams to remove Trump.

GUS100CORRINA -> SILVERGEDDON , Dec 16, 2017 5:43 PM

Observation: RULE OF LAW is under assault.

R USSIAN COLLUSION has been proven false. Therefore, Mueller's job is DONE!!!

END this charade and this witchhunt!!! Open all sealed indictments and proceed forward with arrests.

Chupacabra-322 -> GUS100CORRINA , Dec 16, 2017 5:48 PM

@ GUS,

"Rule of Law under assault?"

Check the scoreboard. Their currently isn't any rule of law among Criminals. We're

Tyrannically Lawless.

Chupacabra-322 -> kellys_eye , Dec 16, 2017 7:38 PM

Here's the short list of Pure Evil War Criminal Treasonous Seditious Psychopath Hillary Clinton's Crimes.

As a reminder, all the data to date suggests that Hillary broke the following 11 US CODES. I provided the links for your convenience. HRC needs to STAND DOWN.

CEO aka "President" TRUMP was indeed correct when he said: "FBI Director Comey was the best thing that ever happened to Hillary Clinton in that he gave her a free pass for many bad deeds!"

18 U.S. Code § 1905 - Disclosure of confidential information generally
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1905

18 U.S. Code § 1924 - Unauthorized removal and retention of classified documents or material
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1924

18 U.S. Code § 2071 - Concealment, removal, or mutilation generally
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/2071

26 U.S. Code § 7201 - Attempt to evade or defeat tax
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/26/7201

26 U.S. Code § 7212 - Attempts to interfere with administration of internal revenue laws
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/26/7212

18 U.S. Code § 1343 - Fraud by wire, radio, or television
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1343

18 U.S. Code § 1349 – Attempt and Conspiracy
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1349

18 U.S. Code § 1505 - Obstruction of Proceedings before departments, agencies, and committees
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1505

18 U.S. Code § 1621 - Perjury generally (including documents signed under penalty of perjury)
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1621

18 USC Sec. 2384?TITLE 18 - CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE?PART I - CRIMES?CHAPTER 115 - TREASON, SEDITION, AND SUBVERSIVE ACTIVITIES
http://trac.syr.edu/laws/18/18USC02384.html

18 U.S. Code § 2381 - Treason
Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.
https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/2381

The Preponderance of Evidence suggests that she broke these Laws, Knowingly, Willfully and Repeatedly. This pattern indicates a habitual/career Criminal, who belongs in Federal Prison.

If Pure Evil War Criminal Treasonous Seditious Psychopath Hillary Clinton would have been elected. Many if not all of the High Crimes, Crimes & sexual perversion's we see coming to Light never would have been known off.

The Tyrannical Lawlessness we see before our eyes never would have seen the light of day.

And, here's the Dark Humor in this. I'm not an Agent / Esq. Attorney from The City of London. This is common knowledge anyone could Investigate for themselves.

Americans have always been fascinated with the Law. It's the reason some of the highest rated Tee Vee shows we're all based on Law or the presumption of it. Show such as "Law & Order" & CSI. Christ Sakes, look at the OJ Trail ratings.

We're now a Nation of Men, not Law. Thus, to my point.

We're now absolutely, completely, open in your Face

Tyrannically Lawless.

Everybodys All ... -> SILVERGEDDON , Dec 16, 2017 6:13 PM

Mueller is doing more harm to the fbis already terrible reputation every day this sham is extended another day. When Mueller is done with this he better watch his backside is all I can say because many people are pissed at what he has put this country through.

bh2 , Dec 16, 2017 5:43 PM

Curious. Whatever transpired during the transition about "contact" with "Russians" would have been within the authority of the president-elect or his staff.

Why then would emails during transition be subject to review by Congress (or anyone else) with respect to alleged "collusion" between the campaign and foreign government officials? And why did not Trump just assert privilege and tell Congress to pound sand?

This is beginning to look like a snipe hunt which is being extended to provide political eyewash to blind the public to the reality there was no "there" there.

Kayman , Dec 16, 2017 5:40 PM

Mueller is dirty. Nothing more, nothing less. It's not the dirt we see on the surface, it is the dirty hidden below the cesspool of the Washington Mob.

Stan Smith , Dec 16, 2017 5:41 PM

It really is a soft coup by the FBI, CIA, DNC, among others. What a disgrace. These are the same people who want to be taken seriously. We'll take them seriously once they become serious. Which is likely no time soon.

chunga -> Stan Smith , Dec 16, 2017 5:58 PM

All these agencies are wacked right out. What we need is one moar... the Bureau of Pissed Off Citizens With Pitchforks. The Imperial City is out of control.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fyr0zbaFyE

MuffDiver69 , Dec 16, 2017 5:50 PM

Yep...Now the Fake News has all the Trump transition emails and gossip. This entire operation was a data mining expedition for the DNC and democrats. If you want to know a mans motives look at who he hires and Mueller has 3/4 partisan left wing hacks working for him. The fact they think this is ok and no big deal tells you all one needs to know and if it's proven they have been leaked, then shut this shit show down..This country is a disgrace.

RussianSniper , Dec 16, 2017 6:08 PM

The left and right establishment of DC, the Intelligence agencies, the fake news, and the Department of Justice have undertaken an overthrow of the constitutionally elected President of the United States.

This is treason.
This is sedition.

People need to answer for their crimes and should be punished severely.

Justice in the USA is not a thing of the past....

No matter what the previous criminal administrations wish you to believe.

Manaze , Dec 16, 2017 6:09 PM

This article never did say what the unlawful conduct was in obtaining the emails. GSA has no choice in cooperating with Mueller. He has been given broad authority.

I wish there was more objectivity on zerohedge. Mostly it is right extremist hate mongers who are besotted with one-sided cool aid. They just decide who to hate then lambast them without looking at all the facts. Nobody would call that smart.

Irish Yoga , Dec 16, 2017 6:12 PM

No mention of Bill, Hillary, Awans, Debbie, Seth, Huma, Carlos (perv husband of Huma the Hummer), Chelsea, and many other things too long to list. Hmmm... maybe the FBI should be chasing real criminals. But they are merely guardians of the old guard these days. Investigation was long ago deleted from their mandate.

"Rebellion to t... , Dec 16, 2017 6:20 PM

The sad fact of the matter is that all those involved in this overthrow, fully understand, their actions and behavior up to and including the spying on, the unmasking, the leaking of classified information, the slanderous and disinformation shit out by the fake news, etc., would eventually be exposed.

Those complicit did not care!

They'd rather destroy the nation than relinquish their unchecked power and ill gotten wealth.

We are on the verge of the fight of our lives.

US patriots will soon be in the field of battle with the deep state/shadow government/evil empire.

When the dust settles, no Bush, Clinton, or Obama family member or administration team should walk free.

The intelligence agencies need to be broken down.

Traitors need to answer for their crimes.

Those convicted must pay the ultimate price.

Pigeon -> "Rebellion to tyranny is obedience to God."-ThomasJefferson , Dec 16, 2017 6:30 PM

"would eventually be exposed."

No, they did not. Because Hillary was rigged to win.

Honest John , Dec 16, 2017 7:05 PM

But they still can't get Hillary's e mails. Mueller is obviously a Clinton stooge.

ErostheDog , Dec 16, 2017 7:06 PM

And the coup attempt continues...

I Write Code , Dec 16, 2017 7:15 PM

Of course if anybody put anything sensitive in any email - without serious extra encryption - then they deserve whatever comes.

Neochrome , Dec 16, 2017 7:21 PM

This whole thing started out of nothing, or rather from a planted lie, as losers refused to accept the outcome of the election they thought they have sufficiently gamed. Meanwhile we have DNC testifying that they don't give a shit about democracy as they can do as they please as a "private" organization, including sabotaging their own candidates, but yawn to that. We have a testimony that connects DNC to the murder of Seth Rich, testimony obstructed from proper investigation by the highest law enforcement agency in the country itself. We have bureaucrat insurrection, from lowest clerks and judges to highest government officials, aimed at undermining the duly elected POTUS. This is a revolution in reverse, where ruling class is trying to overthrow the will of the people. And who is in the forefront of this fascist takeover and trampling of democracy: exactly the agencies that suppose to protect the country from that scenario - CIA and FBI. Finally the veil of "democracy has slipped and we can all see the ugly truth behind it...

[Dec 15, 2017] Andrew Weissmann, Mueller's Legal Pit Bull

Notable quotes:
"... But many defense lawyers have chafed at what they see as a scorched-earth approach, forged in Brooklyn while facing down Mafia members and refined on the government's unit of Enron superprosecutors, which left a mixed legacy of high-profile successes, overturned convictions and one unanimous defeat at the Supreme Court. ..."
"... Then came the shock-and-awe raid of Mr. Manafort's home - a Weissmann special, both admirers and critics recognized - the Zorro "Z" to announce his presence in the case. ..."
nytimes.com

top lieutenant to Robert S. Mueller III on the special counsel investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible links to the Trump campaign. Significantly, Mr. Weissmann is an expert in converting defendants into collaborators - with either tactical brilliance or overzealousness, depending on one's perspective.

If Mr. Mueller is the stern-eyed public face of the investigation, Mr. Weissmann, 59, is its pounding heart, a bookish, legal pit bull with two Ivy League degrees, a weakness for gin martinis and classical music and a list of past enemies that includes professional killers and white-collar criminals.

... ... ...

But many defense lawyers have chafed at what they see as a scorched-earth approach, forged in Brooklyn while facing down Mafia members and refined on the government's unit of Enron superprosecutors, which left a mixed legacy of high-profile successes, overturned convictions and one unanimous defeat at the Supreme Court.

... thousands of dollars in past donations from Mr. Weissmann to Democrats, including former President Barack Obama.

...Then came the shock-and-awe raid of Mr. Manafort's home - a Weissmann special, both admirers and critics recognized - the Zorro "Z" to announce his presence in the case.

"There's a name," the conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh warned listeners last week, recapping the "intimidating technique" afoot. "Weissmann."

... ... ...

whose work has been taken up by Trump allies like Newt Gingrich. (In 2015, Ms. Powell criticized Mr. Weissmann in an article for The New York Observer - which was owned by Jared Kushner, Mr. Trump's son-in-law - after Mr. Weissmann was named to lead the Justice Department's criminal fraud section.)

[Dec 13, 2017] All the signs in the Russia probe point to Jared Kushner. Who next?

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... More like he's denying the story peddled by the Democrats in some vain attempt at reducing his legitimacy over smashing Hillary in the elections. ..."
"... What is he going to prison for, again? Colluding with Israel? ..."
"... The most anger in the media against the POTUS seems to be directed against Russia gate. Time and energy is wasted on conjecture, most 'probables will not stand in a court of law. This media hysteria deflects from the destruction of the affordable healthcare act and the tax changes good for the rich against the many. I think the people are being played. ..."
"... In the 1990s and 2000s a large section of the American establishment was effectively bought off by people like Prince Bandar. These are the ones that are determined that the anti-Russian policy then instigated be continued, even at the cost of slandering the current President's son-in-law. The irony is that in the meantime an effective regime change has taken place in Saudi and Bandar's bandits are mostly locked up behind bars. ..."
"... True, and not just hypocrisy either. This has to be seen in the context of a war, cold for now, on Russia - with China, via Iran and NK, next in line. Dangerous times, as a militarily formidable empire in economic decline looks set to take us all out. For the few who think and resist the dominant narrative - and are thereby routinely called out as 'kremlin trolls' - it is dismaying how easily folk are manipulated. ..."
"... Your points are valid but, alas, factual truths are routinely trumped (!) by powerful mythology. Fact is, despite an appalling record since WW2, Washington and its pet institutions - IMF/World Bank/WTO - are still seen as good guys. How? Because (a) all western states have traded foreign policy independence for favoured status in Washington, (b) English as global lingua franca means American soft propaganda is lapped up across the world via its entertainment industry, and (c) all 'our' media are owned by billionaire corps or as with BBC/Graun, subject to government intimidation/market forces. ..."
"... Truth is, DRT is not some horrifically new entity. (Let's not forget how HRC's 'no fly zone' for Syria promised to take us into WW3, nor her demented "we came, we saw, he died - ha ha" response to Gaddafi's sodomisation by knife blade, and more importantly to Libya's descent into hell.) As John Pilger noted, "the obsession with Trump the man – not Trump as symptom and caricature of an enduring system – beckons great danger for all of us". ..."
"... If all Meuller has is Flynn and the Russians during the transition period, he's got nothing. ..."
"... It's alleged that Turkey wanted Flynn to extradite Gullen for his alleged involvement in Turkey's failed coup. Just this weekend, Turkey have issued an arrest warrant for a former CIA officer in relation to the failed coup. So, IF the CIA were behind the failed coup and Flynn knows this - well, a good way to silence him would be to charge him with some serious crimes and then offer to drop them in return for his silence. But, like your theory, it's just speculation. ..."
"... The secret deep state security forces haven't been this diminished since Carter cleared the stables in the 70's - they fought back and stopped his second term ... ..."
"... Seeing how the case against Trump and Flynn is based on 'probable' and not hard proof its 'probable that the anti Trump campaign is directed from within the murky enclaves of the US intelligence community. ..."
"... Hatred against Trump deflects the anger, see the system works the US is still a democracy. Well it isn't, its a sick oligarchy run by the mega rich who own the media, 90% is owned by 5 corporations. Americans are fed the lie that their vast military empire with its 800 overseas bases are to defend US interests. ..."
"... Wow this is like becoming McCarthy Era 2.0. I'm just waiting for the show trials of all these so-called colluders. ..."
"... the interest of (Russian Ambassador) Kislyak in determining the position of the new administration on sanctions is not unheard of in Washington, or necessarily untoward to raise with one of the incoming national security advisers. Ambassadors are supposed to seek changes in policies and often seek to influence officials in the early stages of administrations before policies are established. Flynn's suggestion that the Russians wait as the Trump administration unfolded its new policies is a fairly standard response of an incoming official ..."
"... "The problem is charging Flynn for lying. A technicality. But not charging Hillary for email server. Another technicality. That's all the public will see if no collusion proved, and will ruin credibility of the FBI and the Dems" ..."
"... It's not just collusion is it, what about the rampant, naked nepotism, last seen on this unashamed scale in ancient Rome? ..."
"... So he lobbied for Israel not Russia then? Whoops. How does the author even know where Mueller's probe is heading, and which way Flynn flipped? Flynn worked much longer for the Obama administration than for Trump's. ..."
"... You can easily impeach Trump for bombing Syria's military airfield, which is by UN definition war crime of war aggression, starting war without the Congress approval; and doing so by supporting false flag of AQ, is support of terrorists and so on ..."
"... Oh you can't do it, of course, it was so - so presidential to bomb another country and it is just old habit and no war declaration, if country is too weak to bomb you back. And you love this exiting crazy balance of global nuclear annihilation too much, so you prefer screaming Russia, Russia to keep it hot, for wonderful military contracts. ..."
"... If the US wanted to do itself a massive favour it should shine the spotlight on Robert Mueller, the man now in charge of investigating the President of these United States for "collusion" with Russia and possible "obstruction of justice" himself obstructed a congressional investigation into the 9/11 terrorist attacks. ..."
"... Dealing with western backed coups on its own doorstep and being the only country actually to be legally fighting in Syria - a war that directly threatens its security - does not amount to global belligerence. ..."
"... Clinton lied under oath ..."
"... The logan act is a dead law no one will be prosecuted for a act that has never been used... plus the president elect can talk to any foreign leader he or she wishes to use and even talk deals even if a current president for 2 months is still in office... ..."
"... Should all countries which try to influence elections be treated as enemies? Where do you set the threshold? If we go by the actual evidence, Russia seems to have bought some Facebook ads and was allegedly involved in exposing HRC's meddling with the Democratic primaries. Compare that to the influence that countries like Israel and the Gulf Arabs exert on American politics and elections. Are you seriously claiming that Russia's influence is bigger or more decisive? ..."
"... The goal of weakening the US is also highly debatable. Accepting for a moment that Russia tried to tip the balance in favor of Trump, would America be stronger if it were engaged more actively in Syria and Ukraine? Is there a specific example where Trump's administration weakened the American position to the advantage of Russia? And how is the sustained anti-Russian information warfare helping anyone but the Chinese? ..."
"... The clues that Kushner has been pulling the strings on Russia are everywhere... He then pushed Flynn hard to try to turn Russia around on an anti-Israel vote by the UN security council. ..."
"... And Russia didn't turn, so hardly a clue that Kushner was pulling strings with any effect. What this clue does suggest however, is that Israel pressured/colluded with the Trump Team to undermine the Obama administrations policy towards a UN resolution on illegal settlements. The elephant in the room is Israels influence on US politics. ..."
"... In relation to the "lying" charge - In December, Flynn (in his role as incoming National Security Advisor) was told to talk to the Russians by Kushner (in his role as incoming special advisor). In these conversations, Flynn told the Russians to be patient regarding sanctions as things may change when Trump becomes President. All of this is totally legal and is what EVERY new adminstration does. Flynn had his phoned tapped by the FBI so they knew he had talked to the Russian about sanctions - they also knew the conversation was totally legal - but when they asked him about it, he said he didn't discuss sanctions. So Flynn is being charged about lying about something that was totally legal for him to do. That's it. ..."
"... All those thinking this is the beginning of the end of Trump are going to be disappointed. Just look at the charges so far. Manafort has been charged with money laundering and not registering as a foreign agent - however, both of those charges pre-date him working for Trump. Flynn has been charged with lying to the FBI about speaking to the Russians - even though him speaking to the Russians in his role as National Security Advisor to the President-elect was not only totally legal, it was the norm. And this took place in December, after the election. ..."
"... So the 2 main players have been charged with things that have nothing to do with the Trump campaign, and lets not forget the point of the investigation is to find out if Trump's campaign colluded with the Russians to win the election. Manafort's charges related to before working for the Trump campaign whilst Flynn's came after Trump won the Presidency, neither of which have anything to do with the election. As much as I wish Trump wasn't President, don't get your hopes up that this is going anywhere ..."
"... Gross hypocrisy on the US governments side. They have, since WW2 interfered with other countries elections, invaded, and killed millions worldwide, and are still doing so. Where were the FBI investigations then? Non existent. US politicians and the military hierarchy are completely immune from any prosecutions when it comes down to overseas illegal interference. ..."
"... America like all governments are narcissistic, they will cheat, steal, kill, if it benefits them. It's called national interest, and it's number one on any leader's job list. Watch fog of war with Robert McNamara, fantastic and terrifying to see how it works. ..."
"... The US has also been meddling in other countries elections for years, and doubtless most Americans neither know or care about that! So it's perhaps it's best to simply term them a 'rival', most people should be able to agree on that ..."
"... Gallup have been polling Americans for the past couple of decades on this. The last time I read about it a couple of years ago 70% of Americans had unfavourable views of Russia, ranging from those who saw them as an enemy (a smaller amount) through to those who saw them as a threat. ..."
Dec 13, 2017 | www.theguardian.com

polpont , 4 Dec 2017 08:32

Mueller will have to thread very carefully because he is maneuvering on a very politically charged terrain. And one cannot refrain from comparing the current situation with the many free passes the democrats were handed over by the FBI, the Department of Justice and the media which make the US look like a banana republic.

The mind blowing fact that Clinton sat with the Attorney General on the tarmac of the Phoenix airport "to chit-chat" and not to discuss the investigation on Clinton's very wife that was being overseen by the same AG, leaves one flabbergasted.

And the fact that Comey essentially said that Clinton's behaviour, tantamount in his own words to extreme recklessness, did not warrant prosecution was just inconceivable.

Don't forget that Trump has nearly 50 M gun-toting followers on Tweeter and that he would not hesitate to appeal to them were he to feel threatened by what he could conceive as a judicial Coup d'Etat. The respect for the institutions in the USA has never been so low.

ID1456161 -> Canadiman , 4 Dec 2017 08:30

...a judge would decide if the evidence was sufficient to warrant a trial.

Actually, in the U.S. a grand jury would decide if the evidence was sufficient to warrant formal charges leading to a trial. There is also the possibility that Mueller has uncovered both Federal and NY State offenses, so charges could be brought against Kushner at either level. Mueller has been sharing information from his investigation with the NY Attorney General's Office. Trump could pardon a federal offense, but has no jurisdiction to pardon charges brought against Kushner by the State of NY.

Anna Bramwell -> etrang , 4 Dec 2017 08:28
I watched RT for 24 months before the US election. They favoured Bernie Saunders strongly before he lost to Hilary. Then they ran hustings for the smaller US parties, eg Greens, and the Libertarians , which could definitely be seen as an interference in the US election, but which as far as I know, was never mentioned in the US. They were anti Hilary but not pro Trump. And indeed, their strong anti capitalist bias would have made such support unlikely.
EduardStreltsovGhost -> JonShone , 4 Dec 2017 08:28
What's he lying about? More like he's denying the story peddled by the Democrats in some vain attempt at reducing his legitimacy over smashing Hillary in the elections.

Obama and Hillary met hundreds of foreign officials. Were they colluding as well?

pretzelattack -> Atticus_Finch , 4 Dec 2017 08:28
What is he going to prison for, again? Colluding with Israel?
oddballs -> Taf1980uk , 4 Dec 2017 08:26
The most anger in the media against the POTUS seems to be directed against Russia gate. Time and energy is wasted on conjecture, most 'probables will not stand in a court of law. This media hysteria deflects from the destruction of the affordable healthcare act and the tax changes good for the rich against the many. I think the people are being played.
Krautolivier , 4 Dec 2017 08:21
In the 1990s and 2000s a large section of the American establishment was effectively bought off by people like Prince Bandar. These are the ones that are determined that the anti-Russian policy then instigated be continued, even at the cost of slandering the current President's son-in-law. The irony is that in the meantime an effective regime change has taken place in Saudi and Bandar's bandits are mostly locked up behind bars.
It's all too funny.
zerohoursuni -> damientrollope , 4 Dec 2017 08:19
True, and not just hypocrisy either. This has to be seen in the context of a war, cold for now, on Russia - with China, via Iran and NK, next in line. Dangerous times, as a militarily formidable empire in economic decline looks set to take us all out. For the few who think and resist the dominant narrative - and are thereby routinely called out as 'kremlin trolls' - it is dismaying how easily folk are manipulated.

Your points are valid but, alas, factual truths are routinely trumped (!) by powerful mythology. Fact is, despite an appalling record since WW2, Washington and its pet institutions - IMF/World Bank/WTO - are still seen as good guys. How? Because (a) all western states have traded foreign policy independence for favoured status in Washington, (b) English as global lingua franca means American soft propaganda is lapped up across the world via its entertainment industry, and (c) all 'our' media are owned by billionaire corps or as with BBC/Graun, subject to government intimidation/market forces.

Truth is, DRT is not some horrifically new entity. (Let's not forget how HRC's 'no fly zone' for Syria promised to take us into WW3, nor her demented "we came, we saw, he died - ha ha" response to Gaddafi's sodomisation by knife blade, and more importantly to Libya's descent into hell.) As John Pilger noted, "the obsession with Trump the man – not Trump as symptom and caricature of an enduring system – beckons great danger for all of us".

cookcounty , 4 Dec 2017 08:15
I missed Jill Abramson's column about all the meetings the Obama administration held -- quite openly -- with foreign governments during the transition period between his election and his first inauguration.

But since she's been demonstrably and laughably wrong about predicting future political events in the USA (see her entire body of work during the 2016 election campaign), why should she start making sense now?

It's completely possible, of course, that some as-yet-to-be-revealed piece of evidence will prove collusion -- before the election and by candidate Trump -- with the Russians. But the Flynn testimony certainly isn't it. All the heavy breathing and hysteria is simply a sign of how the media, yet again, always gravitates toward the news it wishes were true, rather than what really is true. If all Meuller has is Flynn and the Russians during the transition period, he's got nothing.

themandibleclaw -> SteveMilesworthy , 4 Dec 2017 08:12
Flynn was charged with far more serious crimes which were all dropped and he was left with a charge that if he spends any time in prison, it will be about 6 months. Now, you could say for him to agree to that, he must have some juicy info - and he probably does - but what that juicy info is is just speculation. And if we are speculating, then maybe what he traded it for was nothing to do with Trump? After all, one of the charges against him was failing to register as a foreign agent on behalf of Turkey.

It's alleged that Turkey wanted Flynn to extradite Gullen for his alleged involvement in Turkey's failed coup. Just this weekend, Turkey have issued an arrest warrant for a former CIA officer in relation to the failed coup. So, IF the CIA were behind the failed coup and Flynn knows this - well, a good way to silence him would be to charge him with some serious crimes and then offer to drop them in return for his silence. But, like your theory, it's just speculation.

WallyWillage , 4 Dec 2017 08:05
Still no evidence of Russian collusion in Trump campaign BEFORE the election...... whatever happened after being president elect is not impeachable unless it would be after taking office.

The secret deep state security forces haven't been this diminished since Carter cleared the stables in the 70's - they fought back and stopped his second term ...

EduardStreltsovGhost -> CitizenOfTinyBlue , 4 Dec 2017 08:03

You can easily impeach Trump for bombing Syria's military airfield, which is by UN definition war crime of war aggression

if that were the case, Clinton, Bush and Obama would be sitting in jail right now.
oddballs -> Taf1980uk , 4 Dec 2017 07:58
Seeing how the case against Trump and Flynn is based on 'probable' and not hard proof its 'probable that the anti Trump campaign is directed from within the murky enclaves of the US intelligence community.

Trumps presidency could have the capability of galvanising a powerful resistance against the 2 party state for 'real change, like affordable healthcare and affordable education for ALL its people. But no its not happening, Trump is attacked on probables and undisclosed sources. A year has passed and nothing has been revealed.

Hatred against Trump deflects the anger, see the system works the US is still a democracy. Well it isn't, its a sick oligarchy run by the mega rich who own the media, 90% is owned by 5 corporations. Americans are fed the lie that their vast military empire with its 800 overseas bases are to defend US interests.

Well their not, their only function is, is to spend tax dollars that otherwise would be spent on education, health, infrastructure, things that would 'really' benefit America. Disagree, well go ahead and accuse me of being a conspiracy nut-job, in the meantime China is by peaceful means getting the mining rights in Africa, Australia, deals that matter.

The tax legislation for the few against the many is deflected by the anti-Trump hysteria based on conjecture and not proof.

EduardStreltsovGhost , 4 Dec 2017 07:52
Wow this is like becoming McCarthy Era 2.0. I'm just waiting for the show trials of all these so-called colluders.
RelaxAndChill -> Silgen , 4 Dec 2017 07:46
Crimea was and is Russian. Your mask is slipping, Vlad .

Your ignorance is showing. I have no connection to Russia what so ever. Crimea was legally ceded to Russia over 200 years ago, by the Ottomans to Catherine the Great. Russia has never relinquished control. What the criminal organization the USSR did under Ukrainian expat Khrushchev, is irrelevant. And as Putin said , any agreement about respecting Ukraine's territorial integrity was negated when the USA and the EU fomented and financed a rebellion and revolution.

StillAbstractImp , 4 Dec 2017 07:40
Decelerating Fascism - Is Kushner a Putin operative, too?
mikedow -> Karantino , 4 Dec 2017 07:35
Australia, Canada, and S. Africa supply the lion's share of gold bullion that London survives on. And the best uranium in the world. All sorts of other precious commodities as well. If you're not toeing the line on US foreign policies religiously, the Yanks will drop you.
themandibleclaw -> Toastface_Killah , 4 Dec 2017 07:34

You are selectively choosing to refer to this one instance, but even here Obama administration were still in charge - so not very legal, was it.

I am "selectively choosing to refer to this one instance" because that's all Flynn has been charged with. Oh, and it is totally legal for a member of the incoming administration to start talks with their foreign counterparts. Here's a quote from an op-ed piece in The Hill from a law professor at Washington University.

the interest of (Russian Ambassador) Kislyak in determining the position of the new administration on sanctions is not unheard of in Washington, or necessarily untoward to raise with one of the incoming national security advisers. Ambassadors are supposed to seek changes in policies and often seek to influence officials in the early stages of administrations before policies are established. Flynn's suggestion that the Russians wait as the Trump administration unfolded its new policies is a fairly standard response of an incoming official .

http://thehill.com/opinion/judiciary/362813-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-of-the-flynn-indictment

backstop -> EdwardFatherby , 4 Dec 2017 07:31
"The problem is charging Flynn for lying. A technicality. But not charging Hillary for email server. Another technicality. That's all the public will see if no collusion proved, and will ruin credibility of the FBI and the Dems"

It's not just collusion is it, what about the rampant, naked nepotism, last seen on this unashamed scale in ancient Rome?

BustedBoom , 4 Dec 2017 07:31

He then pushed Flynn hard to try to turn Russia around on an anti-Israel vote by the UN security council.

So he lobbied for Israel not Russia then? Whoops. How does the author even know where Mueller's probe is heading, and which way Flynn flipped? Flynn worked much longer for the Obama administration than for Trump's.
CitizenOfTinyBlue , 4 Dec 2017 07:26
You can easily impeach Trump for bombing Syria's military airfield, which is by UN definition war crime of war aggression, starting war without the Congress approval; and doing so by supporting false flag of AQ, is support of terrorists and so on

Oh you can't do it, of course, it was so - so presidential to bomb another country and it is just old habit and no war declaration, if country is too weak to bomb you back. And you love this exiting crazy balance of global nuclear annihilation too much, so you prefer screaming Russia, Russia to keep it hot, for wonderful military contracts.

Oh, and I have to be supporter of Putin's oligarchy with dreams of great tsars of Russia, if I care about humans survival on this planet and have very bad opinion about suicidal fools playing this stupid games.

ConCaruthers , 4 Dec 2017 07:25
If the US wanted to do itself a massive favour it should shine the spotlight on Robert Mueller, the man now in charge of investigating the President of these United States for "collusion" with Russia and possible "obstruction of justice" himself obstructed a congressional investigation into the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
moonsphere -> Hydro , 4 Dec 2017 07:24
Dealing with western backed coups on its own doorstep and being the only country actually to be legally fighting in Syria - a war that directly threatens its security - does not amount to global belligerence.
etrang -> CraftyRabbi , 4 Dec 2017 07:14

Mueller could charge/indict Kushner or Trump Jr under New York state criminal statutes

But not for crimes relating to federal elections or conspiring with Russia.

John Edwin -> OlivesNightie , 4 Dec 2017 07:13
Clinton lied under oath
John Edwin -> SoAmerican , 4 Dec 2017 07:11
The logan act is a dead law no one will be prosecuted for a act that has never been used... plus the president elect can talk to any foreign leader he or she wishes to use and even talk deals even if a current president for 2 months is still in office...
emiliofloris -> Sowester , 4 Dec 2017 07:08

I am not sure any level of scandal will make much difference to Trump or his supporters. They simply see this as an elitist conspiracy and not amount of evidence of wrongdoing will have an impact.

So far the level of scandal is below that of Whitewater/Lewinsky, and that was a very low level indeed. What "evidence of wrongdoing" is there? Nothing, that's why they charged Flynn with lying to investigators. It's important to keep in mind that the he did nor lie about actual crimes. Perhaps that's going to change as the investigation proceeds, but so far this is nothing more than a partisan lawfare fishing expedition.

Billsykesdoggy -> reinhardpolley , 4 Dec 2017 06:55
<blockquoteSpecifically, it prohibits citizens from negotiating with other nations on behalf of the United States without authorization.>

So Trump authorized Obama's talks with Macron last week?

Don't think so.

braciole -> Karantino , 4 Dec 2017 06:55

Because they attempted to covertly influence a general election in order to weaken the US.

And your evidence for this is what exactly? As for countries trying to influence elections in other countries, I'm all for it particularly when one of the candidates is murderous, arrogant and stupid.

BTW, in Honduras after supporting a coup against the democratically-elected president because he sought a referendum on allowing presidents to serve two terms, you'd think the United States would interfere when his non-democratically-elected replacement used a "packed" supreme court to change the constitution to allow presidents to serve more than one term to at least stop him stealing an election as he is now doing/has done. But they didn't and that hasn't stopped the United States whining that Evo Morales is being undemocratic by trying to extend the number of terms he can serve.

emiliofloris -> Karantino , 4 Dec 2017 06:53

Because they attempted to covertly influence a general election in order to weaken the US.

Should all countries which try to influence elections be treated as enemies? Where do you set the threshold? If we go by the actual evidence, Russia seems to have bought some Facebook ads and was allegedly involved in exposing HRC's meddling with the Democratic primaries. Compare that to the influence that countries like Israel and the Gulf Arabs exert on American politics and elections. Are you seriously claiming that Russia's influence is bigger or more decisive?

The goal of weakening the US is also highly debatable. Accepting for a moment that Russia tried to tip the balance in favor of Trump, would America be stronger if it were engaged more actively in Syria and Ukraine? Is there a specific example where Trump's administration weakened the American position to the advantage of Russia? And how is the sustained anti-Russian information warfare helping anyone but the Chinese?

technotherapy , 4 Dec 2017 06:46
The clues that Kushner has been pulling the strings on Russia are everywhere... He then pushed Flynn hard to try to turn Russia around on an anti-Israel vote by the UN security council.

And Russia didn't turn, so hardly a clue that Kushner was pulling strings with any effect. What this clue does suggest however, is that Israel pressured/colluded with the Trump Team to undermine the Obama administrations policy towards a UN resolution on illegal settlements. The elephant in the room is Israels influence on US politics.

themandibleclaw -> Simon Denham , 4 Dec 2017 06:44

Can someone please actually tell us what Flynn/Jared/Trump is supposed to have done.

In relation to the "lying" charge - In December, Flynn (in his role as incoming National Security Advisor) was told to talk to the Russians by Kushner (in his role as incoming special advisor). In these conversations, Flynn told the Russians to be patient regarding sanctions as things may change when Trump becomes President. All of this is totally legal and is what EVERY new adminstration does. Flynn had his phoned tapped by the FBI so they knew he had talked to the Russian about sanctions - they also knew the conversation was totally legal - but when they asked him about it, he said he didn't discuss sanctions. So Flynn is being charged about lying about something that was totally legal for him to do. That's it.

moonsphere -> SoAmerican , 4 Dec 2017 06:44
These days "US influence" seems to consist of bombing Middle Eastern countries back to the bronze age for reasons that defy easy logic. Anything that reduces that kind of influence would be welcome.
reinhardpolley -> Simon Denham , 4 Dec 2017 06:33
The Logan Act (18 U.S.C.A. § 953 [1948]) is a single federal statute making it a crime for a citizen to confer with foreign governments against the interests of the United States. Specifically, it prohibits citizens from negotiating with other nations on behalf of the United States without authorization.
https://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Logan+Act
themandibleclaw , 4 Dec 2017 06:22
All those thinking this is the beginning of the end of Trump are going to be disappointed. Just look at the charges so far. Manafort has been charged with money laundering and not registering as a foreign agent - however, both of those charges pre-date him working for Trump. Flynn has been charged with lying to the FBI about speaking to the Russians - even though him speaking to the Russians in his role as National Security Advisor to the President-elect was not only totally legal, it was the norm. And this took place in December, after the election.

So the 2 main players have been charged with things that have nothing to do with the Trump campaign, and lets not forget the point of the investigation is to find out if Trump's campaign colluded with the Russians to win the election. Manafort's charges related to before working for the Trump campaign whilst Flynn's came after Trump won the Presidency, neither of which have anything to do with the election. As much as I wish Trump wasn't President, don't get your hopes up that this is going anywhere.

damientrollope , 4 Dec 2017 06:15
Gross hypocrisy on the US governments side. They have, since WW2 interfered with other countries elections, invaded, and killed millions worldwide, and are still doing so. Where were the FBI investigations then? Non existent. US politicians and the military hierarchy are completely immune from any prosecutions when it comes down to overseas illegal interference.

But now this Russian debacle, and at last they've woken up, because another country had the temerity to turn the tables on them. And I think if this was Bush or Obama we would never have heard a thing about it. Everybody hates the Dotard, because he's an obese dick with an IQ to match.

Boojay , 4 Dec 2017 06:15
Nothing will happen to Trump, It's all bollocks. You've all watched too many Spielberg films, bad guys win, and they win most of the time.
Trump is the real face of America, America like all governments are narcissistic, they will cheat, steal, kill, if it benefits them. It's called national interest, and it's number one on any leader's job list. Watch fog of war with Robert McNamara, fantastic and terrifying to see how it works.
formerathlete -> vacantspace , 4 Dec 2017 06:15

when American presidents were rational, well balanced with progressive views we had.... decent American healthcare? Equality of opportunity? Gun laws that made it safe to walk the streets?

Say who, what an a where now????????? Since when has the US EVER had any of the three things that you mentioned???

If ever, then it was a loooooong time before the pilgrim fathers ever landed.

Hugh Mad -> JonShone , 4 Dec 2017 06:10

The US has also been meddling in other countries elections for years, and doubtless most Americans neither know or care about that! So it's perhaps it's best to simply term them a 'rival', most people should be able to agree on that.

That is the bottom line, yes. People view the world through west = good and Russia = bad, while both make economic and political decisions that serve the interests of their people respectively. Ultimately, I think people are scared that the West's monopoly on global influence is slipping, to as you said, a rival.

JonShone -> Hugh Mad , 4 Dec 2017 06:06
You are right that calling Russia the US enemy needs justification, but these threads often deteriorate into arguments of the yes it is/no it isn't variety.

Gallup have been polling Americans for the past couple of decades on this. The last time I read about it a couple of years ago 70% of Americans had unfavourable views of Russia, ranging from those who saw them as an enemy (a smaller amount) through to those who saw them as a threat.

It's certain that their ideals and goals run counter to those generally held in the US in many ways. But let's not forget that the US' ideals are often, if not generally, divergent from their interests and US foreign policy since 1945 has been responsible for countless deaths, perhaps more than Russia's.

The US has also been meddling in other countries elections for years, and doubtless most Americans neither know or care about that! So it's perhaps it's best to simply term them a 'rival', most people should be able to agree on that.

RelaxAndChill , 4 Dec 2017 05:59
All the signs in the Russia probe point to ..

How the liberals and the Democrats don't give a damm about the USA or the world's political scene, just some endless 'sore loser' witch hunt. So much could be achieved by the improving of relations with Russia. Crimea was and is Russian. Let Trump have a go as POTUS and then judge him. He wants to befriend Putin and if done it would help solve Syrian, Nth Korean and other global problems.

variation31 -> Sowester , 4 Dec 2017 05:50

They simply see this as an elitist conspiracy and not amount of evidence of wrongdoing will have an impact

Whereas if it's a Democrat in the spotlight, these same dipshits see it as an élitist cover-up and no lack of evidence of wrongdoing will have an impact. If anything, lack of evidence is evidence of cover-up which is therefore proof of evidence.

These cynical games they play with veracity and human honesty are a very pure form of evil.

[Dec 13, 2017] Rosenstein s only good choice name a special prosecutor (opinion)

Dec 13, 2017 | www.cnn.com

If I had a dollar for every time I heard the words "special prosecutor" over the past week, I would have enough money to qualify for a cabinet position in the Trump Administration. Various Democratic senators have been calling for a special prosecutor whenever they can get close enough to a microphone. Last week, a number of state attorneys general wrote a joint letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosentein urging him to appoint an independent special prosecutor. The New York Times Editorial Board joined the chorus a few days ago.

The idea of appointing a special prosecutor to take over the Russia investigation is not new. In March, a public opinion poll suggested that two-thirds of Americans supported the appointment of a special prosecutor. That was before Comey was fired, and before the competing excuses for firing him that came from the White House and President Trump himself.

A few months ago, I predicted that Trump might fire Comey. (I'm not happy I was right, and the writing on the wall was clear enough for anyone who cared to look.) I thought back then that the only way to move forward with a credible investigation into Russia's involvement with the last election would be to appoint a special counsel. What was a good idea then is a necessity now. It's not just because Trump pulled the trigger on firing Comey. Although it's unusual, it's not illegal for a President to fire an FBI Director. A President can hire and fire executive branch officials as he sees fit. Read More close dialog

close dialog And that's the problem. Trump can remove anyone and everyone holding a top position at the Justice Department who may be involved in this investigation. Clearly, he's not been shy about sacking Justice Department officials. Just ask Sally Yates and Preet Bahrara , or the other 46 US Attorneys who were told to vacate their offices before sundown earlier this year. Views on Comey's firing

Let's imagine for a minute that the people in charge decided that appointing a special prosecutor was the right thing to do. This is how it would work . The attorney general (or the deputy attorney general in a case like this one, where the attorney general recuses himself) has the discretion to appoint a "special counsel" when: (1) a criminal investigation is warranted; (2) there is a potential conflict of interest if the Justice Department conducted the investigation, or there are "extraordinary circumstances" present; and (3) it would be in the public interest to appoint a special counsel. The decision by the deputy attorney general to appoint (or not appoint) a special counsel is not be reviewable.

Although political and public pressure can certainly influence the decision, it's entirely up to Rosenstein to do it or not. I know that, according to sources cited by CNN, Rosenstein doesn't see the need for a special counsel at this point. He's wrong. It doesn't really matter if there is nothing to the allegations of Russia's meddling in the election or collusion with the Trump team. At this point, there is so much distrust and skepticism about the process itself that there needs to be an independent prosecutor looking into these allegations just to assure the country that the President and his associates did not commit a crime. Rosenstein shouldn't get any friction from his boss.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has publicly recused himself from any investigation dealing with Russian meddling, and Sessions had no problem with the idea of a special prosecutor when the potential target was Hillary Clinton. I recognize that there are legitimate arguments against the appointment of a special counsel. The process can be expensive, lack clear direction, last for a year or more, and is not guaranteed to reach any meaningful conclusions. But the benefits of appointing a special counsel in this case greatly outweigh the potential downsides. Although no one has asked me (and no one probably will), I know just the person for the job: Larry Thompson, a former deputy attorney general and former US attorney in Republican administrations.

He has extensive private sector experience, and is currently trusted by a federal court to oversee Volkswagen's compliance with criminal sanctions related to its emissions scandal. He is a loyal Republican and a supporter of Sessions , so the GOP couldn't credibly claim he's politically biased. More importantly, he's well-respected, extremely competent, and experienced in complex criminal investigations.

Whether it's Larry Thompson or someone else, a special prosecutor should be appointed to take over this investigation. If Rosenstein is the man everyone says he is , I believe he will appoint a qualified, independent prosecutor to take over this mess of an investigation. Mr. Rosenstein, the ball is in your court. Don't let America down.

[Dec 13, 2017] Meet Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general tied to Comey s firing

Notable quotes:
"... At his Senate confirmation hearing March 7, Rosenstein refused to say whether he would be willing to bring in a special counsel, saying he wouldn't make judgments in advance. ..."
"... Rosenstein has spent 27 years at Justice, getting an early job as a senior aide to a deputy attorney general. As a U.S. attorney, he supervised a broad range of criminal prosecution. ..."
"... In the 1990s, Rosenstein worked on the independent counsel investigation of President Clinton and Hillary Clinton for their investments in a failed real estate company known as Whitewater. ..."
"... Rosenstein was involved in separate questioning of both Clintons, who never were charged with a crime. More than a dozen others were charged and convicted, including the governor of Arkansas. ..."
May 11, 2017 | LA Times
James Comey , Rod J. Rosenstein knew his job would be different.

Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation in March after news reports revealed he had failed to tell his Senate confirmation hearing about his meetings last year with Russia's ambassador to the U.S.

Rosenstein, a veteran prosecutor who had been serving as the U.S. attorney for Maryland, was confirmed as the No. 2 by the Senate the following month.

That put him in charge of the investigation into whether current or former aides to President Trump coordinated with Russia during the 2016 campaign.


What is Rosenstein's role in the Russia probe?

It will fall to Rosenstein to decide whether to file criminal charges against any of Trump's aides, to drop the case entirely or to hand it off to an independent prosecutor.

At his Senate confirmation hearing March 7, Rosenstein refused to say whether he would be willing to bring in a special counsel, saying he wouldn't make judgments in advance.

But he said he had "no reason to doubt" the conclusions of U.S. intelligence agencies that Russian authorities sought to influence the presidential race. He also said he believed the Justice Department could handle the most politically complicated cases without fear of compromise.

Feinstein: Rosenstein's memo on Comey reads like a 'hastily assembled' political document "

What was his role in the Comey firing?

Rosenstein laid out the case for Comey to be removed in a three-page memo that the White House released Tuesday.

In firing Comey, Trump had said he acted on Rosenstein's recommendation.

In a memorandum to Sessions, Rosenstein harshly criticized Comey for actions going back to last July, when he held a news conference to announce that the FBI would not seek charges against presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the email investigation but denounced her conduct.

That was a serious misjudgment, Rosenstein wrote, adding, "The goal of a federal criminal investigation is not to announce our thoughts at a press conference."

He went on to say that Comey had made the problems worse with his decision to disclose in late October -- 11 days before the election -- that the FBI had reopened its investigation of Clinton after finding State Department emails on a computer belonging to former Rep. Anthony Weiner , the estranged husband of Clinton's aide Huma Abedin .

Reports have since come out that Rosenstein threatened to resign over the way the Comey dismissal was attributed in part to the memo.

Read his letter here.

What else does Rosenstein do?

As Sessions' top deputy, Rosenstein is responsible for using Justice Department resources to step up enforcement of immigration laws, a Trump administration priority.

Sessions already has instructed all U.S. attorney's offices to be more aggressive about filing criminal charges against people who cross the border illegally, and he has threatened to cut off department grants to so-called sanctuary cities unless they cooperate with immigration agents.

[Sessions] picked someone who grew up in the department and knows how cases are decided, and should be decided.

-- Jamie Gorelick, deputy attorney general from 1994-1997

How did he become deputy attorney general?

The Senate voted overwhelmingly last month to confirm Rod J. Rosenstein as the No. 2 official at the Justice Department.

Rosenstein, 52, won unusual bipartisan support on the strength of his crime-fighting efforts as the U.S. attorney for Maryland for the last 12 years. He was confirmed as deputy attorney general by a vote of 94 to 6.

Where did he get his start?

Rosenstein has spent 27 years at Justice, getting an early job as a senior aide to a deputy attorney general. As a U.S. attorney, he supervised a broad range of criminal prosecution.

He first was nominated to the post by President George W. Bush. President Obama kept him on after the Senate did not move on Bush's previous nomination of Rosenstein for a seat on a federal appeals court.

In the 1990s, Rosenstein worked on the independent counsel investigation of President Clinton and Hillary Clinton for their investments in a failed real estate company known as Whitewater.

Rosenstein was involved in separate questioning of both Clintons, who never were charged with a crime. More than a dozen others were charged and convicted, including the governor of Arkansas.

Jamie Gorelick, who served as deputy attorney general from 1994 to 1997 under the Clinton administration, praised Rosenstein at a recent ethics conference.

She said the department would remain in experienced hands. Sessions "picked someone who grew up in the department and knows how cases are decided, and should be decided," she said.

[Dec 11, 2017] FINALLY! CONGRESS INITIATES LEGISLATION TO REMOVE BOB MUELLER OVER FBI BIAS TOWARDS TRUMP

Dec 11, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Published on Dec 8, 2017

FINALLY! CONGRESS INITIATES LEGISLATION TO REMOVE BOB MUELLER OVER FBI BIAS TOWARDS TRUMP

Thanks for watching, please subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFmY...

[Dec 11, 2017] Another Judge just stepped down from Mueller's team over Hillary Clinton connections

Dec 11, 2017 | www.youtube.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=74uCzQB2DX4

Patricia Crowell , 1 day ago

Fuentes is right about Comey and his cohorts, and this shows how biased and criminal the FBI was operating in very big cases that are all connected. These false investigation being run by Mueller are all connected with Comey, but Mueller is heavily connected with Comey. Mueller was also passed over by President Trump for director of the FBI. Mueller wanted that position and didn't get it. Think he might be pissed? And now he's investigating President Trump. This smells bad.

Sandra White , 20 hours ago

FBI-SIS Comey the leaker and the Agents that play the game. The DNC Russia dossier is the ball that Comey pushed down the hill. Swamp needs to be drained.

Gerard Waters , 15 hours ago

So it is the fault of the president that the FBI reputation is in tatters . NO. It is the fault of the FBI. Here in Europe we are laughing at the FBI and their reputation. Drain your swamp which includes the FBI and CIA

THESHOMROM , 16 hours ago

I realized the FBI is corrupt when Comey testified before Congress. It is time to put all FBI employees to be given lie detector tests. DITTO the CIA, NSA and all US intelligence agencies. It might not be a bad idea to do the same for Pentagon and White House employees. Extreme, maybe, but something isn't Kosher here.

Dave Kay , 1 hour ago (edited)

Politics has truly become a children's game. Both sides are playing extremely biased opposing enemy positions. Both sides scream nonsense at one another, neither side will listen, and talking is out of the question. Both sides are shooting, but nobody gets shot. Everybody is playing, but nobody is doing anything. Everybody has been caught out, but they all keep playing. This is the never ending game with no rules except "hate Russia" that we call "hate Russia." What do we need to do...ring the dinner bell? Come on Trump, you've won, put them all in jail, and let's have pizza! Merry Christmas!

Jim Man , 5 hours ago

this government has gone way beyond investigations, it is infested with ...globalist cockroaches and needs an exterminator. we need a military take down of this government with Trump in command to deal with the infestation. with a take over they could then look at everyone in government and bring charges for their attempted coups and subversion of our duly elected president not to mention all the criminal deals and actions that made them millions, then can charge and punish them as their charges imply ... this is serious, the government is FUBAR...semper-fi..

D Chase , 9 hours ago

Someone needs to get their hand on all the documents and other materials Obama had taken out of the White House before he even left office. It was done under the guise that these documents were for his Library and were going to be stored until the "library was built. This is unprecedented and requires further journalistic scrutiny!

craxd1 , 14 hours ago (edited)

I would like to ask Tom Fuentes, (who is a regular on CNN), what are his thoughts about COINTELPRO? What about Mark Felt during Nixon? After all, he claims that the FBI was squeaky clean up to Comey. He's a lying douche bag.

[Dec 11, 2017] Top Mueller investigator Andrew Weissman under intense scrutiny by Allan Smith

Notable quotes:
"... He also oversaw the FBI's predawn raid in July of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort's Virginia home. ..."
"... First came the email made public by Judicial Watch, where he wrote told Yates he was "so proud" and "in awe" of her decision not to defend Trump's initial travel ban. That was soon followed up by The Journal's revelation that he was in attendance at Clinton's election-night party. ..."
"... Tom Fitton, the president of Judicial Watch, asked , "How much more evidence do we need" that the Mueller team "has been irredeemably compromised by anti-Trump partisans" after his group published Weissmann's email. ..."
"... Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, who has been leading the charge to have the Mueller investigation shut down, told Fox News that Trump was "being persecuted by Hillary Clinton's fan club." ..."
"... Democrats, however, said these latest attacks against the Mueller investigation, and individual investigators in particular, such as Weissmann, are just a sign of things to come with the probe reaching closer to the president. ..."
Dec 09, 2017 | www.businessinsider.com


The investigator dubbed as special counsel Robert Mueller's "pit bull" by The New York Times has come under fire for perceived bias against President Donald Trump.

That investigator, Andrew Weissmann, was reportedly in attendance at former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton's election night party last year at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday. The revelation came days after the conservative group, Judicial Watch , published an email he sent to former acting Attorney General Sally Yates praising her for refusing to defend Trump's controversial travel ban in January.

"If it's true that Andrew Weissmann attended Hillary's victory party, this is getting out of hand," tweeted Ari Fleischer , who served as White House press secretary under President George W. Bush.

Weissmann is one of the most prominent investigators on Mueller's team. Considered to be an expert on flipping "defendants into collaborators -- with either tactical brilliance or overzealousness, depending on one's perspective," as The Times wrote in October, Weissmann is the investigation's "pounding heart, a bookish, legal pit bull with two Ivy League degrees, a weakness for gin martinis and classical music and a list of past enemies that includes professional killers and white-collar criminals."

The prosecutor made a name for himself in high-profile cases involving New York's mob bosses and at the turn of the century in the Enron scandal. He also oversaw the FBI's predawn raid in July of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort's Virginia home.

"If there's something to find, he'll find it," Katya Jestin, who used to work with Weissmann in the US attorney's office for the Eastern District of New York, told The Times. "If there's nothing there, he's not going to cook something up."

Weissmann comes under fire

But following the revelation that one top investigator on Mueller's team, Peter Strzok, had been reassigned from the special counsel's team after he apparently sent anti-Trump text messages during the 2016 election, Republicans began taking aim at Weissmann as the latest example of an investigator biased against the president.

First came the email made public by Judicial Watch, where he wrote told Yates he was "so proud" and "in awe" of her decision not to defend Trump's initial travel ban. That was soon followed up by The Journal's revelation that he was in attendance at Clinton's election-night party.

In a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Thursday, during which FBI Director Christopher Wray was testifying, Republican Rep. Steve Chabot called "the depths of this anti-Trump bias on" the special counsel's team "absolutely shocking."

Tom Fitton, the president of Judicial Watch, asked , "How much more evidence do we need" that the Mueller team "has been irredeemably compromised by anti-Trump partisans" after his group published Weissmann's email.

"Shut it down," he said.

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, who has been leading the charge to have the Mueller investigation shut down, told Fox News that Trump was "being persecuted by Hillary Clinton's fan club."

Democrats, however, said these latest attacks against the Mueller investigation, and individual investigators in particular, such as Weissmann, are just a sign of things to come with the probe reaching closer to the president.

Already, Manafort and former national security adviser Michael Flynn, two of the most prominent members of Trump's campaign, have been charged as part of the Russia investigation. Manafort's associate, Rick Gates, was also charged, as was early Trump campaign foreign-policy adviser George Papadopoulos.

Manafort and Gates pleaded not guilty to 12 counts including money laundering and conspiracy against the US, and Flynn pleaded guilty on December 1 to one count of making false statements to investigators about his contacts with Russians. Papadopoulos also pleaded guilty in July to lying to the FBI about his interactions with Russia-linked individuals.

"I predict that these attacks on the FBI will grow louder and more brazen as the special counsel does his work, and the walls close in around the president, and evidence of his obstruction and other misdeeds becomes more apparent," Rep. Jerrold Nadler of New York, recently promoted to ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, said during Thursday's hearing.

[Dec 11, 2017] RUSSIA PROBE Another Judge just stepped down from Mueller's team over Hillary Clinton connections

Dec 11, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Patricia Crowell , 1 day ago

Fuentes is right about Comey and his cohorts, and this shows how biased and criminal the FBI was operating in very big cases that are all connected. These false investigation being run by Mueller are all connected with Comey, but Mueller is heavily connected with Comey. Mueller was also passed over by President Trump for director of the FBI. Mueller wanted that position and didn't get it. Think he might be pissed? And now he's investigating President Trump. This smells bad.

Ronnie D., Jr. D., Jr. , 1 day ago

Why do these guys continue to pretend that Rod Rosenstein is ever going to oppose anything involving Mueller or Comey, and why hasn't anyone removed that little criminal McCabe yet?

eric klekot , 1 day ago

No one is talking about the Regional offices of the FBI. I would imagine, 40-60 percent of ALL adult Americans, after watching James Comey lay out the crimes of Hillary Clinton, then say "OH, but we're not prosecuting her, because she didn't mean to do it". That is when Americans said "WTF!". Every Criminal says they didn't mean to do it. Think about it, next time you get ticketed for speeding, make sure to tell the Judge, there was no specific intent to speed, therefore you can't prosecute. Not only the above, but now you have Michael Flynn being bankrupted, and he pleads guilty because he ran out of money, and his family couldn't take it anymore. That's now a win in this country. Pleads to a lie during an ambush interview by an obviously bias'd white Knight FBI agent Peter Stroke. While Huma Abedin and Shirley Mills get immunity deals...

Nina Long , 1 day ago

These guys are so blind to their own bias and open only to their own ideology they can't see their own crimes. What a load of crap.

[Dec 11, 2017] BREAKING!! ROBERT MUELLER STEPS DOWN FOR DEVIN NUNES IN RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION PROBE

Dec 11, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Dec 9, 2017

Robert Mueller To Step Down For Devin Nunes in Russian investigation .thanks for watching. Please leave your comments below, like,share and comments

Ricky Pisano , 20 hours ago

LT. GEN. Flynn has his life ruined for being politically ambushed by the FBI and caught in a LIE. HILLARY lies to Congress, The FBI, The American People and is out signing books. A 5' 7" pile of dung!! Memo to President Trump.....Pardon GENERAL FLYNN.

Good Thing , 20 hours ago

There never was Russian collusion on the trump side, now we know the corruption of the FBI with the Obama and Clinton cabal. It's time to execute a lawful end to this mess. These people all thought Hillary was in and really messed up in trying to cover their tracks. It is all going to come out now. Some of these people will get executed and rightfully so.

Rose Garden , 9 hours ago

When you are up to arse in alligators, it's hard to remember your job is to DRAIN THE SWAMP. So many swamp creatures.

[Dec 11, 2017] Gregg Jarrett 'The Mueller Investigation Is Illegitimate and Corrupt'

Dec 11, 2017 | insider.foxnews.com

Fox News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett said Robert Mueller's probe into President Donald Trump is "illegitimate and corrupt."

Jarrett made the remarks citing revelations that FBI Agent Peter Strzok and attorney Andrew Weissmann may have demonstrated bias against Trump.

"Mueller has been using the FBI as a political weapon," he said. "The FBI has become America's secret police."

[Dec 08, 2017] Mueller Charges Against Flynn Exonerate Trump of Russian Collusion by Publius Tacitus

Notable quotes:
"... False Statements Regarding FLYNN's Request to the Russian Ambassador that Russia Refrain from Escalating the Situation in Response to U.S. Sanctions against Russia ..."
Dec 08, 2017 | turcopolier.typepad.com

The news of Mike Flynn's plea agreement with special prosecutor Robert Mueller was trumpeted on the media as if Flynn had admitted to killing Kennedy or had unprotected sex with Vladimir Putin. But once I took time to read the actual agreement I realized, not surprisingly, the the media lynch mob was blinded by hatred and unwilling to think objectively or fairly about the matter. The evidence exonerates Donald Trump of having colluded with the Russians but does expose Michael Flynn as a man of terrible judgment when it comes to talking to the FBI. There was nothing that Flynn did with the Russians that was wrong or improper.

Here are the key details for you to judge for yourself:

STATEMENT OF THE OFFENSE ( link )

Pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11, the United States of America and the defendant, MICHAEL T. FLYNN, stipulate and agree that the following facts are true and accurate. These facts do not constitute all of the facts known to the parties concerning the charged offense; they are being submitted to demonstrate that sufficient facts exist that the defendant committed the offense to which he is pleading guilty.

1. The defendant, MICHAEL T. FLYNN, who served as a surrogate and national security advisor for the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump ("Campaign"), as a senior member of President-Elect Trump's Transition Team ("Presidential Transition Team"), and as the National Security Advisor to President Trump, made materially false statements and omissions during an interview with the Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI") on January 24, 2017, in Washington, D.C. At the time of the interview, the FBI had an open investigation into the Government of Russia's ("Russia") efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election, including the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Campaign and Russia, and whether there was any coordination between the Campaign and Russia's efforts.

2. FLYNN's false statements and omissions impeded and otherwise had a material impact on the FBI's ongoing investigation into the existence of any links or coordination between individuals associated with the Campaign and Russia's efforts to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.

False Statements Regarding FLYNN's Request to the Russian Ambassador that Russia Refrain from Escalating the Situation in Response to U.S. Sanctions against Russia

[Dec 08, 2017] Flynn's Sin Was Lying To Liars, Not Colluding With Russians by Ilana Mercer

Notable quotes:
"... An easy way for the government to create criminality where there is none is to make it a crime to lie to its agents, in this case the FBI, which is Deep State Central. The object of creating bogus categories of crime, naturally, is to leverage power over adversaries; to scare them. ..."
"... This kind of entrapment -- the criminalization of the act of lying to the government, in Flynn's case about a non-crime -- is facilitated under the unconstitutional Section 1001 of Title 18, in the United States Code. It makes it an offense to make " a materially false " statement to a federal official -- even when one is not under oath. ..."
"... He said, she said, he lied, she lied, dog barked, and cat miavd. Unless they prove that there was a money transfer from Russia or from Trump camp to Wiki leaks, all investigation is only waste of time, and waste of money. Actually this investigation is a crime against US Government, because it impedes the normal functioning of US government ..."
"... A weird country, the USA. Do not know of any other country that has a law against contacts with a specified other country, a law making it impossible to interfere with price settinng in the pharmaceutical industry, and a law permitting an invasion of the Netherlands, in case a USA citizen is held in The Hague for trial by the International Court, to liberate the accused. ..."
"... Flynn's sin was to think he could engage in ME diplomacy for Israel and not get caught. When he did, he got tossed under the bus so that the corrupt and savage MSM could keep screaming Russiagate while forgetting to mention that this affair is now IsraeliGate. ..."
"... That the FBI is a rogue Deep State entity and Michael Flynn is a self-aggrandizing Beltway war-monger (i.e., not decent) are not disjoint. ..."
"... Flynn only wanted to make nice with Russia as a process tactic for fueling more war in the Middle East, paid for of course by American taxpayers. Whether the FBI or the cabal of war-monger militarists whispering in Trump's ear – there are no "good guys". ..."
Dec 08, 2017 | www.unz.com

Retired US Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn's sin was lying to liars , not colluding with Russians.

When he spoke to Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, following Donald Trump's 2016 election, former National Security Advisor Flynn was discharging a perfectly legal and patriotic duty to the electorate.

In a fit of pique, then-President Barack Obama had expelled Russian diplomats from the United States. K. T. McFarland, Flynn's deputy in the Trump transition team, worried that Obama's expulsion of the diplomats was aimed at " boxing Trump in diplomatically, " making it impossible for the president to "improve relations with Russia," a promise he ran on. For her perspicacity, McFarland has since been forced to lawyer-up in fear for her freedom.

To defuse President Obama's spiteful maneuver, Flynn spoke to Ambassador Kislyak, the upshot of which was that Russia "retaliated" by inviting US diplomats and their families to the Kremlin for a New Year's bash.

A jolly good diplomatic success, wouldn't you say?

Present at the Kislyak meeting was Jared Kushner, the president's son-in-law. Kushner likely instructed Flynn to ask Russia to disrupt or delay one of the UN Security Council's favorite pastimes: passing resolutions denouncing Israeli settlements. Kushner, however, is protected by Daddy and the First Daughter, so getting anything on Jared will be like frisking a seal.

One clue as to the extent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's violations, here, is that Flynn had committed no crime. Laying the cornerstone for the president-elect's promised foreign policy -- diplomacy with Russia -- is not illegal.

Perversely, however, lying to the US Federal Government's KGB (the FBI), a liar in its own right, is illegal.

The US Government enjoys a territorial monopoly over justice. If you doubt this, pray tell to which higher judicial authority can Flynn appeal to have his state-designated "criminal" label reconsidered or rescinded? Where can he go to recover his standing?

Nowhere.

By legislative fiat, the government has turned this decent man and many like him into common criminals.

An easy way for the government to create criminality where there is none is to make it a crime to lie to its agents, in this case the FBI, which is Deep State Central. The object of creating bogus categories of crime, naturally, is to leverage power over adversaries; to scare them.

Likewise was Martha Stewart imprisoned -- not for the offense of insider trading, but for lying to her inquisitors. During interrogation, the poor woman had been so intimidated, so scared of conviction -- wouldn't you? -- that she fibbed. The lead federal prosecutor in her case was the now-notorious James B. Comey. (See "Insider Trading Or Information Socialism?" )

This kind of entrapment -- the criminalization of the act of lying to the government, in Flynn's case about a non-crime -- is facilitated under the unconstitutional Section 1001 of Title 18, in the United States Code. It makes it an offense to make " a materially false " statement to a federal official -- even when one is not under oath.

It's perfectly fine, however, for said official to bait and bully a private citizen into fibbing. By such tactics, The State has created a category of crime from which a select few are exempt.

Is this equality under the law or inequality under the law?

Section 1001 neatly accommodates a plethora of due-process violations.

Yet another tool in the Deep State toolbox is to lean on family members in order to extract a confession. To get Flynn senior to confess, U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller is purported to have threatened Mike Flynn junior with a legal kneecapping.

Ultimately, The State has overwhelming power when compared to the limited resources and power of an accused. The power differential between The State and an accused means he or she, as the compromised party, will cop a plea. The Flynn guilty plea bargain, if you will, is nothing more than a negotiated deal which subverts the very goal of justice: the search for truth.

In the process of hammering out an agreement that pacified a bloodthirsty prosecutor, Flynn's punishment for doing nothing wrong has been reduced. President Trump's former national security adviser will still have to sell his home to defray the costs of a federal onslaught. Is this the rule of law, or the law of rule? The question is a rhetorical one.

Ilyana_Rozumova , December 8, 2017 at 1:13 am GMT

He said, she said, he lied, she lied, dog barked, and cat miavd. Unless they prove that there was a money transfer from Russia or from Trump camp to Wiki leaks, all investigation is only waste of time, and waste of money. Actually this investigation is a crime against US Government, because it impedes the normal functioning of US government.
exiled off mainstreet , December 8, 2017 at 1:26 am GMT
I fully concur with the commentary. Once the Martha Stewart case went forward and this "law" was not challenged, my view, at that time and since, was that the yankee imperium had entered the post-rule of law era. This is amply shown by the use this "law" has been put to. In the end, it was creeping extra-legal fascism that destroyed the rule of law in the US, not creeping socialism as was feared by certain elements in the '60s. The existence and enforcement of this provision is an affront to basic decency and the rule of law, and the legitimacy of any state which upholds such an extra-legal provision is non-existent.
geokat62 , December 8, 2017 at 5:31 am GMT

Flynn's Sin Was Lying to Liars, Not Colluding with Russians

Why not write an article with the title, Kushner's Sin Was Colluding with Israelis, Not Lying to Liars ?

neutral , December 8, 2017 at 8:08 am GMT
@Ilyana_Rozumova

Unless they prove that there was a money transfer from Russia or from Trump camp to Wiki leaks

Even if this is the case, why should this be a big deal? It's hardly a secret that US politicians take bribes, ahem I meant political donations, from Israel, Saudi Arabia, China and probably many others. Before one takes this farce of selectively law enforcement seriously there needs to be a massive cleanup of root and branch of the entire US regime before any of this can be seen as legitimate.

Mark James , December 8, 2017 at 8:47 am GMT
Was this Ilana's piece? I could have sworn I was reading Alan Dershowitz. Which is not a good thing. Many observers feel Zionist Alan has gone round-the-bend in his analysis.

Anyone feeling sorry for the wayward General is wasting their psychic energy. First he's got exposure in several areas. Second, it's likely he made a great deal with Mueller. Third, he'll probably get a pardon soon (he's a great guy you know).

So the nonsense falls on deaf ears. Flynn didn't have to lie. He did it for a specific reason which we don't know yet. And he didn't have to deal. He could have depended on Trump whilst not rating-out his colleagues (like Manafort). Flynn as his lawyer made clear , "has a story to tell" because he's guilty.

So when Flynn was texting during Trump's inaugural address he was probably just tying up lose ends in various deals, all of which were legit (sure)? Like a potential kidnapping for his client Turkey? Maybe the FBI was complicit in compelling him to do that too. We shall see?

jilles dykstra , December 8, 2017 at 8:48 am GMT
A weird country, the USA. Do not know of any other country that has a law against contacts with a specified other country, a law making it impossible to interfere with price settinng in the pharmaceutical industry, and a law permitting an invasion of the Netherlands, in case a USA citizen is held in The Hague for trial by the International Court, to liberate the accused.
Greg Bacon , Website December 8, 2017 at 10:20 am GMT
Flynn's sin was to think he could engage in ME diplomacy for Israel and not get caught. When he did, he got tossed under the bus so that the corrupt and savage MSM could keep screaming Russiagate while forgetting to mention that this affair is now IsraeliGate.

Flynn broke no laws establishing relations with Russia for the incoming president. But when he started lobbying UN members on behalf of Israel, that's when he crossed the legal line.

He's lucky he only got charged with lying.

But this is how politics play out in the former USA, which is nothing more than a colony of Apartheid Israel, doing the bidding of our Israeli Masters, whether it be fighting endless wars so that Israel can steal more land and water or continually helping Israel commit crimes against humanity in Palestine.

Next stop, Tehran.

Wizard of Oz , December 8, 2017 at 11:14 am GMT
I am no fan of American criminal law or its enforcement. They hardly seem to be the kind of adjunct to the "demovracy" the US seeks to export that it will find helpful in the sales pitch. However I am amazed that sophisticated people questioned by the FBI don't use an equivalent to the Fifth Amendment by saying "I don't intend to lie to you but refuse to answer any of your questions unless I am immune to prosecution under Section 1001 of Title 18 [maybe adding 'except for denying an act which is itself a crime that I have been told is being investigated']".

By the way is it entirely clear that the Logan Act didn't make what Flynn was doing criminal, ridiculous though that would be?

Che Guava , December 8, 2017 at 1:47 pm GMT
Ilana,

I agree with much else you are saying here (though from memory, Martha Stewart's behaviour was clearly white-collar criminal, on top of the lie, unlike Flynn's stupid and inoccuous lie or simple misinterpretation).

ask Russia to disrupt or delay one of the UN Security Council's favorite pastimes: passing resolutions denouncing Israeli settlements.

That is wrong on so many levels.

i. Your bare-faced lie of saying 'Security Council' instead of 'General Assembly', when you are knowing very well that the U.S.A. is *always* vetoing anything critical of Israel in the SC, sole exception being when former Pres. Hopey-Changey Hussein was ordering an abstention on one late in his second term. One of his very few good acts as Pres.

ii. The implicit assumption that Israeli settlements are a good thing. I am sure that you would enjoying it if you were to live somewhere where maniacal strangers who hate you were trying to occupying all high positions, wandering about with automatic and semi-automatic rifles, destroying or seizing your neighbour's (and your) houses, destroying olive groves, and monopolising the water supply, etc.

Palestine used to have a proportionally large Christian population. In the early stages of their departure, Israeli jews were the main driver.

Disingenuous or what?

iii. Why should the main emphasis of any contact with Russia be illegal (under international law) jewish settlements! You cannot even say Israeli, because it is outside the borders of Israel.

SteveM , December 8, 2017 at 2:13 pm GMT

By legislative fiat, the government has turned this decent man [Flynn] and many like him into common criminals.

Daniel Larison of The American Spectator outlined Michael Flynn's "warped worldview" back in 2016:

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/flynns-warped-worldview/

That the FBI is a rogue Deep State entity and Michael Flynn is a self-aggrandizing Beltway war-monger (i.e., not decent) are not disjoint.

Flynn only wanted to make nice with Russia as a process tactic for fueling more war in the Middle East, paid for of course by American taxpayers. Whether the FBI or the cabal of war-monger militarists whispering in Trump's ear – there are no "good guys".

Michael Kenny , December 8, 2017 at 2:20 pm GMT
The frantic tone of the article shows just how much damage Flynn's testimony has done to Trump. What Flynn tells us is that the initiative to contact the Russians came from Trump, not the Russians. That's absolutely damning for Trump. The evidence previously available suggested that the initiative had come from the Russians, pointing towards the possibility that the rather naive Trump team had been more or les set up by the Russians. Now we know that Trump solicited Russian intervention, which tends to prove that he is indeed Putin's stooge or, even worse, the stooge of the gangsters behind Putin. That may well be the deep, dark secret that Trump was afraid Putin would tell. The onus is now on Trump to prove that he isn't an agent of a foreign power and the only way he can do that is to get Putin out of Ukraine.
jacques sheete , December 8, 2017 at 2:56 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

A weird country, the USA.

It's actually beyond weird; it's absolutely mind boggling. Utterly twisted. Everything of value has been twisted and perverted beyond anyone's imagination. One huge plastic garbage dump.

It's a huge corrupt cesspool, yet most people here see nothing but El Dorado and think it's the Savior of the World all rolled into one.

Trump as prez narrowly beating Hillary in a scam democracy-esque "election" and congress bowing and scraping to Netanyahu pretty much sums it all up perfectly.

The place is as full of morons as ignorant as they are arrogant, just like the goofy looking, sounding and acting clowns who rule them. It's utterly beyond redemption.

On another note, can you comment on and/or suggest some good sources for studying the bankers of Amsterdam of the 16th and 17th centuries, including the Dutch West India Co??

Thanks in advance.

jacques sheete , December 8, 2017 at 3:15 pm GMT
@Greg Bacon

But this is how politics play out in the former USA, which is nothing more than a colony of Apartheid Israel, doing the bidding of our Israeli Masters, whether it be fighting endless wars so that Israel can steal more land and water or continually helping Israel commit crimes against humanity in Palestine.

Yup. A nation of Zio-bankster cucks and that includes the vast majority of Jews as well as goyim.

Many warned us of it when they opposed the Federal Reserve and when the Zio-Bolshie banksters suckered the US into WW 1 & 2 on their behalf, but we never even know their names today, and we have next to nobody telling the truth today.

continually helping Israel commit crimes against humanity in Palestine.

And elsewhere. Wherever the banksters demand control, which is nearly everywhere.

Those damned cagaderos have turned the whole planet into one big one!!

jilles dykstra , December 8, 2017 at 3:20 pm GMT
@Michael Kenny

What is the problem of having contacts with Russia ? As to the Ukraine, USA, EU and NATO should leave there. We in Europe do not want the war NATO, USA and EU are seeking. We want normal relations with the country we had a lot of trade with, much of which has disappeared because of sanctions, made possible by the deaths of over 300 passengers aboard MH17.

My country, the Netherlands, objected most to sanctions, we exported a lot to Russia, on the day after the disaster objections had vanished. So it was very lucky for those who wanted to impose sanctions that a plane from Schiphol Amsterdam was hit. Despite that Russia just has disadvantages of the disaster, and the west advantages, the continuing investigation, that will never end, Peyton Place, does anything possible to continue stating vague accusations against Putin.

Suspect Ukraine has been permitted to take part in the investigations.

Ben Frank , December 8, 2017 at 3:24 pm GMT
Are we being asked to believe that China, with ten times Russia's economic strength, never tries to influence American politics?
Joe Hide , December 8, 2017 at 3:45 pm GMT
To Mercer,
Great great article. You've created a description of events that is so absorbing and brings up such deep anger in the reader towards the increasingly exposed psychopathic and psychotic, that we are collectively inspired to end the influence of these creeps. Thank You!
Anonymous , Disclaimer December 8, 2017 at 3:58 pm GMT
Flynn is DIA. He's an actor in this psyop. It's not the crime that counts, it's making a crime understandable by the audience.

Consider that Petraeus fornicated with one of his gun runners. Oh the crime! The US Treasury is an open vault to these elite assassins – there's no law here, but that's not a problem as far as the public will ever know. Neither is the carnage, which is all carefully hidden from view. Deliberately destroying civilian populations is never made obvious.

Occassionally, the FBI and the press will shame one of the royals in a carefully crafted stage production (or tennis match) as competition naturally heats up amongst members of the owner-ruler class. Press mockingbirds will disagree back and forth with one another only adding necessary fuel to the drama.

The "crime" is usually an overwrought, completely specious claim of dishonesty and sometimes a bedroom indiscretion to titillate American prurience. Taken very seriously by at least part of the press, but ridiculed by another. The leading figure nevertheless emerges tarnished. The CIA's Andrea Mitchell will shed a tear on NBC (as she did for hero mass murderer Petraeus). This is an instruction for a simple minded population, including any number of rote evangelicals.

Now Flynn's resume includes a prominent role in the post 9/11 war of terror. An environment that doesn't have anything to do with the American sheep's warped delusions of what the law even means. However, enourmous efforts are always made to indemnify criminal violence through legal mechanism.

The guilded cage for American mafia member Flynn meant he killed as many people as possible in the two major strategic theaters, started his own privateering operation once some of the shooting quieted down, looted and cashed in as a international contractor into imaginable wealth and is now playin himself in his own wrist slappin' psyop.

What's next is predictable. Go on to Wall Street to join an investment firm, accept academic honors, visiting professorships, write a book and maybe even join a "peace" movement to reduce violence – writing an op-ed for Tom's Dispatch. God speed Ó Floinn!

Anonymous , Disclaimer December 8, 2017 at 4:38 pm GMT
@jacques sheete

This doesn't impede the normal function of Government, whatever the fuck that is. Bread and circuses are what the Government delivers daily in darkness. Look at it this way, this investigation is a new product off the assembly line. It's not production in a simple sense, but the externalities are large enough that crisis and drama are a tenuous key to economic growth.

Think of the noise as a large ignot being forged in a factory filed with fire and noise. The end product is probably something you don't really need, so the need is created. It's Friday, let's see what the press sluice gate intends to drown your mind with next. Here we all are – tapping away at our keyboards and iphones in a factory with no pay. You could say we're volunteers for the Government, something it needs to function normally.

[Dec 08, 2017] Mike Flynn s Guilty Plea Gave Robert Mueller Some Badly-Needed Cover

Via Wilkipedia, coup deata is an "illegal and overt attempts by the military or other elites within the state apparatus to unseat the sitting executive."[1] ... In looser usage, as in "intelligence coup" or "boardroom coup", the term simply refers to gaining a sudden advantage on a rival.
Notable quotes:
"... Well, what if, instead of Flynn providing damning information against another member of Trump's inner circle, or against the president himself, Mueller's prosecution of Flynn is an insurance policy protecting him and his team from being dismissed by Trump? To wit, Bloomberg speculates that Flynn's guilty plea might just be the fodder the special counsel needed to protect his team from dismissal by the president. Given that calls for Trump to fire the hopelessly compromised special prosecutor have persisted since last spring, there's more than enough reason to believe that Flynn's prosecution is an end in itself. ..."
"... Equally as important, Flynn's prosecution, following so soon after the charges against Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, also suggests that his investigation is making "progress" – though the logical end point of his crusade remains murky. ..."
"... "Any rational prosecutor would realize that in this political environment, laying down a few markers would be a good way of fending off criticism that the prosecutors are burning through money and not accomplishing anything," says Samuel Buell, a former federal prosecutor now at Duke Law School. ..."
"... The Flynn plea also makes it difficult for Trump to fire Mueller without inviting accusations of a cover-up and sparking a constitutional crisis, says Michael Weinstein, a former Department of Justice prosecutor now at the law firm Cole Schotz. "There would be a groundswell, it would look so objectionable, like the Saturday Night Massacre with Nixon," Weinstein says, referring to President Richard Nixon's attempt to derail the Watergate investigation in 1973 by firing special prosecutor Archibald Cox. ..."
"... Flynn's testimony might eventually help Mueller bring down Kushner or another top Trump aide, but it's hard to imagine how Flynn's word would be enough at this point. ..."
"... Flynn alone may not be enough to advance an obstruction or collusion case. Prosecutors would likely need evidence against other high-ranking Trump associates, including perhaps Jared Kushner. "Unless you've got them on tape, you're going to need a lot better witnesses than Flynn," says Raymond Banoun, a former federal prosecutor. ..."
"... Which leaves one option: Flynn's prosecution is simply an insurance policy. Flynn's guilty plea helped mollify angry Democrats who are demanding Trump's head on a platter. ..."
"... Ultimately, Mueller will be able to persevere – and the atmosphere of paranoia and mistrust he has helped foster in the West Wing will continue to hobble the Trump administration. ..."
"... Larry Nichols was the architect who said the basis of the Clinton crime family's power model is to own the prosecution if not the entire justice chain in the jurisdiction. Then it was Arkansas later DC. ..."
"... This was an attempted coup d'état as the most ex excellent Matt Bracken points out. ..."
"... After the donors (corporate kelptocrats) get their tax "reform", the mainstream Republicans will jump on the Mueller band wagon and join the Democrats in dumping Trump. National politicians are all crooks, and they are scared shitless to have an unpredictable loose cannon in the Oval Office, willing to call them out at anytime. ..."
"... This guy Bruce Ohr was recently demoted from Deputy Director of DOJ, and is suspected of having contacts early in the year with Fusion GPS and personally with Chris Steele, author of the DNC disinformation golden shower dossier. If government officials were involved in manufacturing that, then we really do have an anti-Trump deep state conspiracy. ..."
"... It is hard to know if Mueller has any good cards or not. I don't think a guilty plea over lying to FBI makes for a good witness in court, so I say you got nothing Mueller, time to call. ..."
"... I think at best he is going to pull a stunt by making his investigation public to smear Trump with rumor and innuendo ..."
"... His son was given immunity in exchange. Little Flynn was taking money in a similar pay to play that we saw with Clinton; most likely from Turkey. Michael is protecting his son. Whether there is more to the story, we will know in due time; I am betting that some interesting info will come out in the coming weeks. ..."
"... Mueller was a liar from the very beginning.Mueller lies to congress, commits perjury; Weapons of Mass Destruction https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkF6WpWAxy8 ..."
"... I couldn't disagree more with the premise of this article. Flynn's son is caught in the crosshairs and he's trying to save him. And if you lie and they have you on record then of course you should admit it. ..."
"... This non-recording enables the FBI to entrap any witneses, relative, non-related person with false claims about what they said. Become their witness, or be prosecuted by what their agents say you said. ..."
Dec 08, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

... ... ...

Well, what if, instead of Flynn providing damning information against another member of Trump's inner circle, or against the president himself, Mueller's prosecution of Flynn is an insurance policy protecting him and his team from being dismissed by Trump? To wit, Bloomberg speculates that Flynn's guilty plea might just be the fodder the special counsel needed to protect his team from dismissal by the president. Given that calls for Trump to fire the hopelessly compromised special prosecutor have persisted since last spring, there's more than enough reason to believe that Flynn's prosecution is an end in itself.

By securing a guilty plea from Flynn, Mueller has effectively bought his team precious time to uncover the "smoking gun" that has eluded them thus far. Mueller's prosecution of Flynn is insurance against a presidential firing. At this stage, firing Mueller would lend credence to Democrats' accusations that the president obstructed justice when he asked former FBI Director James Comey to go easy on Flynn. Of course, Trump didn't do himself any favors when he tweeted that Flynn was fired because he lied to Vice President Mike Pence and the FBI (though Trump lawyer John Dowd later copped to writing the tweet, it certainly didn't help Trump's case for firing Mueller).

Equally as important, Flynn's prosecution, following so soon after the charges against Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, also suggests that his investigation is making "progress" – though the logical end point of his crusade remains murky.

As Mueller's probe has gotten closer to Trump's inner orbit, speculation has risen over whether Trump might find a way to shut it down. The Flynn deal may make that harder. For one thing, it shows that Mueller is making progress.

"Any rational prosecutor would realize that in this political environment, laying down a few markers would be a good way of fending off criticism that the prosecutors are burning through money and not accomplishing anything," says Samuel Buell, a former federal prosecutor now at Duke Law School.

The Flynn plea also makes it difficult for Trump to fire Mueller without inviting accusations of a cover-up and sparking a constitutional crisis, says Michael Weinstein, a former Department of Justice prosecutor now at the law firm Cole Schotz. "There would be a groundswell, it would look so objectionable, like the Saturday Night Massacre with Nixon," Weinstein says, referring to President Richard Nixon's attempt to derail the Watergate investigation in 1973 by firing special prosecutor Archibald Cox.

Furthermore, as one legal expert told Bloomberg, it's difficult to see how Flynn's testimony will be enough to incriminate another member of Trump's inner circle. While Flynn's many alleged misdeeds have been chronicled in the press (most notoriously his alleged plan to kidnap Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen), given what's been reported so far, it's hard to see how Flynn's prosecution ties in to some broader narrative.

Flynn's testimony might eventually help Mueller bring down Kushner or another top Trump aide, but it's hard to imagine how Flynn's word would be enough at this point.

Flynn alone may not be enough to advance an obstruction or collusion case. Prosecutors would likely need evidence against other high-ranking Trump associates, including perhaps Jared Kushner. "Unless you've got them on tape, you're going to need a lot better witnesses than Flynn," says Raymond Banoun, a former federal prosecutor.

Some experts believe that Mueller's probe is now almost certain to reach a step beyond that. "Before this is wrapped up, Mueller's going to request an interview with the president, and he may even request it under oath," says Amy Sabrin, a Washington lawyer who worked for Bill Clinton on the Paula Jones sexual harassment case. "And then what is Trump going to do?"

Which leaves one option: Flynn's prosecution is simply an insurance policy. Flynn's guilty plea helped mollify angry Democrats who are demanding Trump's head on a platter. At the same time, it will allow Mueller and his team of hopelessly compromised Hillary Clinton supporters to fend off their critics, who've recently been emboldened by reports that Peter Strzok , an FBI agent who played an important role in the early stages of what became the Mueller investigation - and who also helped supervise the bureau's investigation into Hillary Clinton's mishandling of classified information – expressed anti-Trump sentiments in a series of text messages to his colleague/mistress, FBI lawyer Lisa Page.

Ultimately, Mueller will be able to persevere – and the atmosphere of paranoia and mistrust he has helped foster in the West Wing will continue to hobble the Trump administration.

It's a win-win.

TahoeBilly2012 -> wildbad , Dec 8, 2017 9:09 AM

Why are they looking for a fucking smoking gun, when there is no motive? What is the motive, illegal improved relations with Russia? Isn't that a Presidents job to use his mandate to change course?

Gimme some public hangings, come on, everyone wants it.

eclectic syncretist -> TahoeBilly2012 , Dec 8, 2017 9:11 AM

Kiss my fucking ass ZH and Bloomberg, who wrote the original article which is not credited here https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-12-07/mueller-is-making-sur...

Mueller is the running man in this little episode in history. He's the cowboy in the trail swishing the branches across the tracks, and then stomping down false trails before cutting off sharply into the woods.

As old as he is, he only needs to keep running a few more years at most so that he can die free and not in prison.

you_are_cleared_hot -> eclectic syncretist , Dec 8, 2017 9:25 AM

I was going to say the same thing. I read the bloomberg article (linked on Drudge) like 20min ago...Tyler used the same pics as well. Is this what "Journalism" has come to? C'mon Tyler! don't get sloppy here.

wildbad -> JRobby , Dec 8, 2017 9:24 AM

mueller, comey, holder, clinton crime syndicate is a round robin circle jerk that has been operating since Arkansas days. Larry Nichols was the architect who said the basis of the Clinton crime family's power model is to own the prosecution if not the entire justice chain in the jurisdiction. Then it was Arkansas later DC.

This was an attempted coup d'état as the most ex excellent Matt Bracken points out. He rightly compares this to the plot to kill hitler which failed. The plotters were sure they had succeeded until they were lined up against the wall and shot.

trump is rounding up the firing squad now.

Paul Kersey -> JRobby , Dec 8, 2017 9:20 AM

After the donors (corporate kelptocrats) get their tax "reform", the mainstream Republicans will jump on the Mueller band wagon and join the Democrats in dumping Trump. National politicians are all crooks, and they are scared shitless to have an unpredictable loose cannon in the Oval Office, willing to call them out at anytime.

What they don't understand is that Trump may become even more dangerous to them if he is no longer in office. A Trump-Bannon media machine could do a lot of damage with nothing to restrain it. Look for Muller to tie Bannon into all of this, because Bannon now has a national platform and is too dangerous left on his own to say and do whatever he wants.

chubbar -> wildbad , Dec 8, 2017 9:56 AM

Apparently Mueller and the douche bag who wrote this article are the only people in the world who still believe this is a viable investigation. Mueller has zero chance of convicting anyone after what has been revealed about his investigators as well as his personal involvement in Uranium One. Not to mention, btw, that he is required by law to recuse himself because of his close relationship to one of the key witnesses/actors in this investigation, Comey. It's not even up for debate, it's mandatory and with that being written quite clearly, Mueller still didn't do it. Now it is revealed that Mueller sat with Trump in a job interview for acting head of the FBI while knowing he could very possibly (and was) be selected as a special prosecutor for an investigation into Trump/Russia collusion and he never told Trump. Apparently this is also an act requiring recusal.

Mueller will be lucky to not be sitting in jail after this fiasco. He's crooked as hell and his cover has been blown. Just a matter of time at this point as we are witnessing almost daily revelations of misconduct by his investigators as well as other high level FBI/DOJ officials.

otschelnik -> JoeTurner , Dec 8, 2017 11:03 AM

If this little jewel turns out to be true,

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-12-07/house-to-subpoena-jus...

This guy Bruce Ohr was recently demoted from Deputy Director of DOJ, and is suspected of having contacts early in the year with Fusion GPS and personally with Chris Steele, author of the DNC disinformation golden shower dossier. If government officials were involved in manufacturing that, then we really do have an anti-Trump deep state conspiracy.

Vilfredo Pareto , Dec 8, 2017 9:10 AM

Yeah. It is hard to know if Mueller has any good cards or not. I don't think a guilty plea over lying to FBI makes for a good witness in court, so I say you got nothing Mueller, time to call.

I think at best he is going to pull a stunt by making his investigation public to smear Trump with rumor and innuendo , but a cold hard analysis of fact will show that it is a case no prosecutor would ever take to court.

NotApplicable , Dec 8, 2017 9:11 AM

I wonder if Flynn plead guilty to this to avoid being brought up on other unrelated charges?

Vageling -> NotApplicable , Dec 8, 2017 9:22 AM

That's the exact thing the puzzles me. Watching details unfold. They screwed him. Set him up on this specific one. Why plead guilty? Flynn doesn't strike me as someone who doesn't know what he's doing.

Collectivism Killz -> NotApplicable , Dec 8, 2017 10:13 AM

His son was given immunity in exchange. Little Flynn was taking money in a similar pay to play that we saw with Clinton; most likely from Turkey. Michael is protecting his son. Whether there is more to the story, we will know in due time; I am betting that some interesting info will come out in the coming weeks.

Miss Expectations -> lester1 , Dec 8, 2017 10:08 AM

Mueller was a liar from the very beginning.Mueller lies to congress, commits perjury; Weapons of Mass Destruction https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkF6WpWAxy8

Cloud9.5 , Dec 8, 2017 9:12 AM

Flynn's only criminal act was a misstatement. That is what they would have called it if Hillary had been caught up in the sting. This is the best they have been able to produce after this tedious attempt to construct a criminal plot that would take down Trump. What they have managed to do is focus a national spot light onto their own misdeeds. The middle management of the FBI better start looking after their own interest. The Agency has a litany of misdeeds in its dossier. If it plans on surviving the ongoing fire storm, those infected members within the Agency must be triaged.

xzandrax , Dec 8, 2017 9:18 AM

Maybe Mueller will not survive, if compromising leaks start leaking. One email or conversation between Strzok, Comey and Hillary/Lynch how to exonerate Hillary and to eavesdrop Trump and bring down Trump or people around him and Mueller is finished.

RagaMuffin , Dec 8, 2017 9:27 AM

So the Republican controlled Congress can't defund Mueller directly or indirectly? If they can are the never Trump Republicans hedging their bets?

sparklinggrapes , Dec 8, 2017 9:36 AM

I couldn't disagree more with the premise of this article. Flynn's son is caught in the crosshairs and he's trying to save him. And if you lie and they have you on record then of course you should admit it.

Oh wait, Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin lied but they didn't admit it. I wonder if that's because the person that interviewed them was a biased Hillary supporter????

Reaper , Dec 8, 2017 9:43 AM

Trump as Chief Executive needs require the FBI to record all interviews with witnesses and suspects. https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/fbi-reverses-longstanding-interview... This non-recording enables the FBI to entrap any witneses, relative, non-related person with false claims about what they said. Become their witness, or be prosecuted by what their agents say you said.

[Dec 03, 2017] Is Washington the Most Corrupt Government in History by Paul Craig Roberts

Looks like the credibility of the US establishment might collapse under weight of all lies that it perpetuated.
Americans and Russians should be natural partners in a multipolar world to widespread benefit. The current situation dominated by neo-McCarthyism witch hunt is tragic. Looks like the current neoliberal elite is truly evil, so there is not much hope for a change there. The American people are overall decent and generous, but their abysmal lack of (or even interest) in history and ignorance of the current events might be their undoing, I'm afraid.
Notable quotes:
"... The presstitutes never investigate real events. The presstitutes never question inconsistencies in official stories. They never tie together loose ends. They simply read over and over the script handed to them until the official story that controls the explanation is driven into the public's head. ..."
Dec 03, 2017 | www.unz.com

Robert Mueller, a former director of the FBI who is working as a special prosecutor "investigating" a contrived hoax designed by the military/security complex and the DNC to destroy the Trump presidency, has yet to produce a scrap of evidence that Russiagate is anything but orchestrated fake news. As William Binney and other top experts have said, if there is evidence of Russiagate, the NSA would have it. No investigation would be necessary. So where is the evidence?

It is a revelation of how corrupt Washington is that a fake scandal is being investigated while a real scandal is not. The fake scandal is Trump's Russiagate. The real scandal is Hillary Clinton's uranium sale to Russia. No evidence for the former exists. Voluminous evidence for Hillary's scandal lies in plain view. http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/10/25/hillary-clinton-and-real-russian-collusion.html

Why are the clearly false charges against Trump being investigated and the clearly true charges against Hillary not being investigated? The answer is that Hillary with her hostility toward Russia and her denunciation of Russian President Putin as the "New Hitler" is not a threat to the budget and power of the US military/security complex, while Trump's aim of normalizing relations with Russia would deprive the military/security complex of the "enemy" it requires to justify its massive budget and power.

Why hasn't President Trump ordered the Justice Department to investigate Hillary? Is the answer that Trump is afraid the military/security complex will assassinate him? Why hasn't the Justice Department undertaken the investigation on its own? Is the answer that Trump's government is allied with his enemies?

How corrupt does Mueller have to be to agree to lead a fake investigation designed to overthrow the democratic election of the President of the United States? Why doesn't Trump have Mueller and Comey arrested for sedition and conspiring to overthrow the president of the United States?

Why instead is Mueller expanding his investigation beyond his mandate and bringing charges against Manafort and others for decade-old under-reporting of income? Why instead is Congress harassing journalist Randy Credico for interviewing Julian Assange? How does an interview become part of the House Intelligence (sic) Committee's investigation into "Russian active measures directed at the 2016 U.S. election?" There were no such active measures, but the uranium sale was real.

Why haven't the media conglomerates that have produced presstitutes instead of journalists been broken up? Why can presstitutes lie 24/7, but a man can't make a pass at a woman?

Once you begin asking questions, there is no end of them.

The failure of the US and European media is extreme.

The presstitutes never investigate real events. The presstitutes never question inconsistencies in official stories. They never tie together loose ends. They simply read over and over the script handed to them until the official story that controls the explanation is driven into the public's head.

Consider, for example, the Obama regime's claim to have murdered Osama bin Laden in his "compound" in Abbottabad, Pakistan, next to a Pakistani military base. The official story had to be changed several times. The Obama regime claim that Obama and top government officials had watched the raid via cameras on the SEALs' helmets had to be abandoned. There was no reason to withhold the filmed evidence, and of course there was no such evidence, so the initial claim to have watched the killing became a "miscommunication." The staged photo of the top government officials watching the alleged live filming was never explained. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1382859/Osama-bin-Laden-dead-Photo-Obama-watching-Al-Qaeda-leader-die-live-TV.html

The entire story never made any sense: Osama, unarmed and defended only by his unarmed wife, was murdered in cold blood by a SEAL. What in the world for? Why murder rather than capture the "terrorist mastermind" from whom endless information could have been gained? Why forgo the political fanfare of parading Osama bin Laden before the world as a captive of the American superpower?

Why were no photographs taken? Why was Osama's body dumped in the ocean. In other words, why was all the evidence destroyed and nothing saved to back up the story?

Why the fake story of Osama being given a sea burial from an aircraft carrier? Why was no media interested that the ship's crew wrote home that no such burial took place?

Why was there no presstitute interest in the fact that the SEAL unit, from which the SEALs on the alleged raid on bin Laden's compound were drawn, was loaded against regulations in one 50-year old Vietnam era helicopter and shot down in Afghanistan, with all lives lost? Why was there no presstitute interest in the parents of the SEALs complaints about inappropriate procedures that cost their sons' lives and about fears expressed to them by sons that something was wrong and they felt endangered? http://www.wnd.com/2013/07/navy-seals-father-obama-sent-my-son-to-his-death/
and https://www.military1.com/navy/article/403494-navy-seals-parents-sue-biden-panetta-over-sons-deaths/ and http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/05/08/families-of-seal-team-6-to-reveal-why-they-think-the-govt-is-as-much-responsible-for-the-death-of-their-sons-as-the-taliban

Did the SEAL unit have to be wiped out because the members were asking one another, "who was on that raid?" "Were you on the bin Laden raid?" When in fact no one was on the raid.

Why wasn't Congress interested?

Why was the live Pakistani TV interview with an eye witness of the alleged raid on bin Laden's compound not reported in the US media? The witness contradicted every aspect of the official story. And this was immediately after the event. There was no time for anyone to concoct an elaborate counter-story or motive to do so. Here is the interview: https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2013/11/15/pakistan-samaa-tv-interview-eyewitness-alleged-osama-bin-laden-killing/ and here is a verified translation that confirms the accuracy of the English subscripts: https://www.opednews.com/populum/page.php?f=Pakistan-TV-Report-Contrad-by-paul-craig-roberts-110806-879.html

Osama bin Laden had been dead for a decade prior to the false claim that Navy SEALs murdered him in Pakistan in May 2011. Here are the obituraries from December 2001: https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2013/11/20/bin-ladens-obituary-notice/ and this one from Fox News: http://www.foxnews.com/story/2001/12/26/report-bin-laden-already-dead.html

Here is bin Laden's last confirmed interview. He says he had nothing to do with 9/11. Why would a terrorist leader who succeed in humiliating "the world's only superpower" fail to boost his movement by claiming credit?
https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2012/11/26/the-osama-bin-laden-myth-2/

See also:

https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2014/11/07/another-fake-bin-laden-story-paul-craig-roberts/

http://www.globalresearch.ca/pentagon-orders-purge-of-osama-bin-ladens-death-files-from-data-bank/5342055

http://themindrenewed.com/interviews/2013/334-int-32

https://www.opednews.com/populum/page.php?f=Creating-Evidence-Where-Th-by-paul-craig-roberts-110805-618.html

https://www.opednews.com/populum/page.php?f=Pakistan-TV-Report-Contrad

Think about this. The bin Laden story, including 9/11, is fake from start to finish, but it is inscribed into encyclopedias, history books, and the public's consciousness.

And this is just one example of the institutionalized mass lies concocted by Washington and the presstitutes and turned into truth. Washington's self-serving control over explanations has removed Americans from reality and made them slaves to fake news.

So, how does democracy function when voters have no reliable information and, instead, are led into the agendas of the rulers by orchestrated events and fake news?

Where is there any evidence that the United States is a functioning democracy?

[Dec 01, 2017] Mueller investigation is patterned after the investigation of Bill Clinton

The idea is to create the crime -- if they pressure Trump long enough, then Trump may well make a mistake such as lying. Or they can dig out something really embarrassing. As the scope is deliberately very open and the pretext is fake, this is essentially Lavrentiy Beria method: shown me the man and I will find a crime
Notable quotes:
"... They're trying to manufacture an obstruction of justice charge. Without the independent prosecutor's investigation, there would be no opportunity for someone to lie, mislead, or inadvertently omit facts. ..."
"... The warrant's timing may also shed light on the FBI's relationship to the infamous " Steele dossier." That widely discredited dossier claiming ties between Russians and the Trump campaign was commissioned by left-leaning research firm Fusion GPS and developed by former British spy Christopher Steele -- who relied on Russian sources. ..."
"... But the Washington Post and others have reported that Mr. Steele was familiar to the FBI, had reached out to the agency about his work, and had even arranged a deal in 2016 to get paid by the FBI to continue his research. ..."
"... But Mr. Mueller is not investigating the FBI, and in any event his ties to the bureau and Mr. Comey make him too conflicted for such a job. Congress is charged with providing oversight of law enforcement and the FISA courts, and it has an obligation to investigate their role in 2016. The intelligence committees have subpoena authority and the ability to hold those who don't cooperate in contempt. ..."
"... No investigation into Russia's role in the 2016 campaign will be credible or complete without the facts about all Mr. Comey's wiretaps. ..."
"... And beyond delving into Comey's machinations, I think it high time to get former AG, Loretta Lynch under oath in front of a Congressional Committee to inquire after the real substance of her supposedly impromptu meeting with Slick Willy on the airport tarmac. ..."
"... If she needs to be compelled to answer through an offer of immunity, this would be a very clarifying moment, indeed. And if she still refuses, preferring being cited for contempt of Congress, well, that might be pretty interesting in its own right. And if she left any trail of evidence behind her like, say for instance, relating this information to one of her staff, the staffer could be questioned under similar terms. ..."
"... Also a good time to have a little chat with the guy from Crowdstrike, too. And on a related note, maybe a wee bit of inquiry with Mr. Comey on the logic of the FBI in not demanding access to the server ? ..."
"... Working my way through Gibbons' Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire. There are ominous parallels to be observed between some of the events he recounts, and events of the present day. The Praetorian Guards and the legions more generally actively manipulated events to attain self-serving outcomes. Elements of our intelligence community seem to be treading a similar path; harrassing, crippling, and if felt necessary working toward the eviction of a legitimately chosen President are rather obviously in play. Not, as in the case of the Roman military, killing him, but effectively overturning the government seems to be the tactic, and all to serve their own ends, and the Constitutional order be damned. History, as has been said, may not repeat, but it sure as hell rhymes. ..."
"... Intel agencies secretly monitored conversations of members of Congress while the Obama administration negotiated the Iran nuclear deal. ..."
"... In 2014, the CIA got caught spying on Senate Intelligence committee staffers, though CIA Director John Brennan had explicitly denied that. ..."
"... I have spent more than two years litigating against the Department of Justice for the computer intrusions. Forensics have revealed dates, times and methods of some of the illegal activities. The software used was proprietary to a federal intel agency. The intruders deployed a keystroke monitoring program, accessed the CBS News corporate computer system, listened in on my conversations by activating the computer's microphone and used Skype to exfiltrate files. ..."
"... I was also curious to see what kind of crime would be committed under US law since anything the Russians did was just normal state-to-state competition. ..."
"... Manafort should sue the Federal Gov for violation of his rights against unlawful search and seizure. FISA is unconstitutional and should challenge the entire case on the basis that anything obtained was based on a FISA warrant. Force the courts and above all else the Supreme Court to address the issue finally. Manafort is by no means an angel, but he has rights and deserves a fair shake instead of the train ride he's on. ..."
"... With the world's 7th largest economy, what sane businessman would NOT want to cultivate relationships and develop the Russian market, particularly since it is virtually untapped by Western companies? ..."
"... According to Martha Stewart, a false statement to a federal officer need not be sworn. ..."
"... on't understand any of this. Unless Mr Steele was entirely off the leash, which is difficult to believe, there's evidence of our complicity in covert interference with the US Presidential elections. Then there's evidence of Israeli interference, and that overt. Also, although it's not directly relevant here, there's sufficient evidence that the US itself pulls strings in other countries' elections. ..."
"... The criminal laws in this country are sufficiently broad and far-reaching that an aggressive prosecutor can find a reason to imprison almost anyone, especially if the target is engaged in political or business matters of any sophistication. ..."
"... This is intentional. The laws are designed such that the people that the establishment wants to imprison are imprisoned when they do the things the establishment doesn't want, and those people that the establishment does not want imprisoned are not. ..."
"... This is why HRC can blatantly violate the Espionage Act and then spoliate evidence with no fear of prosecution. In fact, law enforcement twist themselves into knots to avoid conducting a serious investigation, as that might force them to act. After that farce, Comey publicly justified conduct that (as he admitted) would send a normie on a one-way trip to a SuperMax. ..."
"... Mueller will get some scalps. Guaranteed. ..."
Sep 21, 2017 | turcopolier.typepad.com

It appears to me that the current dream/hope in the "resistance" is that Mueller will fish around enough to come up with "evidence" that DJT and some of the people in his campaign and administration have been witting or unwitting cultivated assets of the Russian state for some years. I do not really understand how that would be crime under US law unless espionage against US official secrets were involved but the political effect would be ruinous. pl

James , 20 September 2017 at 07:35 PM

Personally, I think this investigation is patterned after the independent prosecutor's investigation of Bill Clinton. Bill was brought down by a dalliance with an intern. If they pressure Trump long enough then Trump may well make a mistake such as lying. Or they can use their investigative powers to find something embarrassing (they get to question everyone they want under oath and those questioned have to answer the questions). Otherwise the investigation can just drag on forever.

I wish more people understood that this is not about Democats vs Republicans.

Les -> James ... , 21 September 2017 at 09:50 AM
They're trying to manufacture an obstruction of justice charge. Without the independent prosecutor's investigation, there would be no opportunity for someone to lie, mislead, or inadvertently omit facts.

I'm getting tired of seeing the same events trumpeted by the media and the independent prosecutor as if there was something new. How many times can you disclose you were wiretapping one of the persons of interest or that you raided their home for documents?

turcopolier , 20 September 2017 at 07:37 PM
All

I suppose that there could be a FARA violation if the person involved was involved in US foreign policy or if a false statement were made in something official and sworn. pl

Sam Peralta , 20 September 2017 at 07:37 PM
Col. Lang

In light of what you wrote about the FISA wiretaps, the WSJ has an editorial requesting Congress to investigate "Comey's wiretaps".

https://www.wsj.com/articles/all-mr-comeys-wiretaps-1505862793

The warrant's timing may also shed light on the FBI's relationship to the infamous " Steele dossier." That widely discredited dossier claiming ties between Russians and the Trump campaign was commissioned by left-leaning research firm Fusion GPS and developed by former British spy Christopher Steele -- who relied on Russian sources.

But the Washington Post and others have reported that Mr. Steele was familiar to the FBI, had reached out to the agency about his work, and had even arranged a deal in 2016 to get paid by the FBI to continue his research.

The FISA court sets a high bar for warrants on U.S. citizens, and presumably even higher for wiretapping a presidential campaign. Did Mr. Comey's FBI marshal the Steele dossier to persuade the court?

Russian meddling is a threat to democracy but so was the FBI if it relied on Russian disinformation to eavesdrop on a presidential campaign. The Justice Department and FBI have stonewalled Congressional requests for documents and interviews, citing the "integrity" of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

But Mr. Mueller is not investigating the FBI, and in any event his ties to the bureau and Mr. Comey make him too conflicted for such a job. Congress is charged with providing oversight of law enforcement and the FISA courts, and it has an obligation to investigate their role in 2016. The intelligence committees have subpoena authority and the ability to hold those who don't cooperate in contempt.

Mr. Comey investigated both leading presidential campaigns in an election year, playing the role of supposedly impartial legal authority. But his maneuvering to get Mr. Mueller appointed, and his leaks to the press, have shown that Mr. Comey is as political and self-serving as anyone in Washington.

No investigation into Russia's role in the 2016 campaign will be credible or complete without the facts about all Mr. Comey's wiretaps.

JerseyJeffersonian -> Sam Peralta... , 20 September 2017 at 10:30 PM
Sam Peralta,

Amen to that.

And beyond delving into Comey's machinations, I think it high time to get former AG, Loretta Lynch under oath in front of a Congressional Committee to inquire after the real substance of her supposedly impromptu meeting with Slick Willy on the airport tarmac.

If she needs to be compelled to answer through an offer of immunity, this would be a very clarifying moment, indeed. And if she still refuses, preferring being cited for contempt of Congress, well, that might be pretty interesting in its own right. And if she left any trail of evidence behind her like, say for instance, relating this information to one of her staff, the staffer could be questioned under similar terms.

I rather think no staffer would be operating under the delusion that they could survive thumbing their nose at Congress like their boss doubtless would. But then again, maybe Seth Rich's still unexplained death may serve as an incentive to them to clam up and weather whatever consequences might flow from that decision.

Also a good time to have a little chat with the guy from Crowdstrike, too. And on a related note, maybe a wee bit of inquiry with Mr. Comey on the logic of the FBI in not demanding access to the server ?

Probably none of this will happen however, this being arguably what we can expect from Imperial Politics; no longer are we to recognize this as the functioning of a Constitutional Republic, sad to say.

JerseyJeffersonian -> JerseyJeffersonian... , 21 September 2017 at 10:17 AM
Working my way through Gibbons' Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire. There are ominous parallels to be observed between some of the events he recounts, and events of the present day. The Praetorian Guards and the legions more generally actively manipulated events to attain self-serving outcomes. Elements of our intelligence community seem to be treading a similar path; harrassing, crippling, and if felt necessary working toward the eviction of a legitimately chosen President are rather obviously in play. Not, as in the case of the Roman military, killing him, but effectively overturning the government seems to be the tactic, and all to serve their own ends, and the Constitutional order be damned. History, as has been said, may not repeat, but it sure as hell rhymes.

Oh, and in a not entirely dissimilar development, in Philadelphia, and in PA, it has emerged that legal immigrants, despite being ineligible, have registered and voted. The hend wavers at the Philadelphia Inquirer are trying to minimize this, of course. The thought arises, if it happened in PA, what about in CA? So maybe yet again, one of President Trump's charges is true? Cue our own crew of handwavers here at SST. Over to you, ladies and gentlemen...

Sam Peralta , 20 September 2017 at 08:05 PM
All

Have we crossed the rubicon to a totalitarian state?

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-09-20/sharyl-attkisson-rages-looks-obama-spied-trump-just-he-did-me

Nobody wants our intel agencies to be used like the Stasi in East Germany; the secret police spying on its own citizens for political purposes. The prospect of our own NSA, CIA and FBI becoming politically weaponized has been shrouded by untruths, accusations and justifications.

You'll recall DNI Clapper falsely assured Congress in 2013 that the NSA was not collecting "any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans."

Intel agencies secretly monitored conversations of members of Congress while the Obama administration negotiated the Iran nuclear deal.

In 2014, the CIA got caught spying on Senate Intelligence committee staffers, though CIA Director John Brennan had explicitly denied that.

There were also wiretaps on then-Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) in 2011 under Obama.

The same happened under President George W. Bush to former Congresswoman Jane Harman (D-Calif.).

Journalists have been targeted, too. This internal email exposed by WikiLeaks should give everyone chills. It did me.

.....

I have spent more than two years litigating against the Department of Justice for the computer intrusions. Forensics have revealed dates, times and methods of some of the illegal activities. The software used was proprietary to a federal intel agency. The intruders deployed a keystroke monitoring program, accessed the CBS News corporate computer system, listened in on my conversations by activating the computer's microphone and used Skype to exfiltrate files.

We survived the government's latest attempt to dismiss my lawsuit. There's another hearing Friday. To date, the Trump Department of Justice -- like the Obama Department of Justice -- is fighting me in court and working to keep hidden the identities of those who accessed a government internet protocol address found in my computers.

Lars , 20 September 2017 at 08:19 PM
It is too early to say where this investigation is going, but there are indications that money laundering and shady real estate transactions are scrutinized. How far up that goes, nobody knows. If close associates of Donald Trump get indicted, he will have both legal and political problems.

Of course that is only one aspect. There may also be some serious conflict of interest problems. All of it is about to face a burst of sunshine and that will illuminate every thing, good or bad. It appears that Donald Trump is seriously bothered by all this activity and that in itself is interesting.

The Twisted Genius , 20 September 2017 at 09:01 PM
I was also curious to see what kind of crime would be committed under US law since anything the Russians did was just normal state-to-state competition.

That happens all the time and will continue to happen all the time. Seems that if anyone on the Trump team can be found soliciting help from a foreign source, it would be a violation of campaign finance laws. If anyone can be tied to the hacking and theft of data or the use of that hacked data (there was a lot of voter data taken in addition to the DNC and Podesta data), the crime would be engaging in a criminal conspiracy. Then, of course, there are the targets of opportunity associated with any cover up like witness intimidation, perjury, obstruction of justice, and the like.

Then there is the NYAG's investigation into Trump and his associates under NY RICO laws. That investigation is still very much alive.

All this makes me wonder who is concentrating on the Russian IO itself. There's no crime here, besides the hacks and theft of data, but that should be the crux of the investigation in my opinion. Perhaps Mueller is doing this. I would think he'd have to understand exactly what was done, how it was coordinated and how it was financed before he could look for any crimes related to this whole Russia thing.

LeaNder -> The Twisted Genius ... , 21 September 2017 at 05:31 AM
TTG, I am not following this closely enough but for whatever reason Manafort popped up on my mind. Maybe due to earlier curiosity concerning the Ukraine. Were would he fit in? And how?

Checking spelling of his name, I realized it made headlines again.

MGS , 20 September 2017 at 09:28 PM
Manafort should sue the Federal Gov for violation of his rights against unlawful search and seizure. FISA is unconstitutional and should challenge the entire case on the basis that anything obtained was based on a FISA warrant. Force the courts and above all else the Supreme Court to address the issue finally. Manafort is by no means an angel, but he has rights and deserves a fair shake instead of the train ride he's on.
JohnH , 20 September 2017 at 10:21 PM
With the world's 7th largest economy, what sane businessman would NOT want to cultivate relationships and develop the Russian market, particularly since it is virtually untapped by Western companies?

Exxon-Mobil certainly wanted to do that. And they don't strike me as unpatriotic dummies --

Will.2718 , 20 September 2017 at 10:21 PM
According to Martha Stewart, a false statement to a federal officer need not be sworn. The best response to an FBI agent or any federal officer is "Have a good day Sir/Maam -- " or Buenos Dias, I prefer to have counsel with me when answering questions.
English Outsider , 21 September 2017 at 05:29 AM
Don't understand any of this. Unless Mr Steele was entirely off the leash, which is difficult to believe, there's evidence of our complicity in covert interference with the US Presidential elections. Then there's evidence of Israeli interference, and that overt. Also, although it's not directly relevant here, there's sufficient evidence that the US itself pulls strings in other countries' elections.

So whatever the Russians did or didn't do messing around with another country's elections, they're pretty far back in the queue. I'm all for the greater readiness to investigate such matters that we see in the US; but why is the spotlight directed only into this little corner?

Sid Finster , 21 September 2017 at 11:14 AM
Google "three felonies a day" or contemplate the words attributed to Richelieu - "Give me but six words written by the most honorable of men, and I will find something therein to hang him with."

The criminal laws in this country are sufficiently broad and far-reaching that an aggressive prosecutor can find a reason to imprison almost anyone, especially if the target is engaged in political or business matters of any sophistication.

This is intentional. The laws are designed such that the people that the establishment wants to imprison are imprisoned when they do the things the establishment doesn't want, and those people that the establishment does not want imprisoned are not.

This is why HRC can blatantly violate the Espionage Act and then spoliate evidence with no fear of prosecution. In fact, law enforcement twist themselves into knots to avoid conducting a serious investigation, as that might force them to act. After that farce, Comey publicly justified conduct that (as he admitted) would send a normie on a one-way trip to a SuperMax.

Mueller will get some scalps. Guaranteed.

[Nov 15, 2017] >How We Can Be Certain That Mueller Won't Prove Trump-Russia Collusion Zero Hedge

Nov 15, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

How We Can Be Certain That Mueller Won't Prove Trump-Russia Collusion? Tyler Durden Nov 15, 2017 7:30 PM 0 SHARES Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

Dear America. Stop trying to make Russiagate happen. It's not going to happen. Deus ex Mueller isn't coming. You're going to have to solve your country's problems yourselves, America. He may dig up evidence of corruption, but Robert Mueller's investigation will never – ever – find proof that Trump colluded with Russia to steal the 2016 election using hackers and propaganda. If you attribute all your problems to Trump, you're guaranteeing more Trumps after him, because you're not addressing the disease which created him, you're just addressing the symptom.

A while back I figured out a trick for using Twitter as a tool to find out what sorts of things establishment loyalists really don't want me saying. Once I discover a really hot button, I write an article that bangs on that button as hard as possible. One of those buttons is expressing my certainty that Robert Mueller's investigation will never, ever find any proof that Trump colluded with Russia to steal the 2016 election using hackers and propaganda.

We are not allowed to say such things. If you debate a Russiagater for any length of time and you know how to debunk their assertions, they always, always, always wind up resorting to a "just you wait until Mueller finishes his investigation" declaration, which from my point of view is the same as debating a fundamentalist Christian whose argument boils down to "Well I'll be proven right when you die and God sends you to Hell!"

You can always feel right if you kick the can around some corner in the future that can't be seen and analyzed critically. Luckily for us, we've got information that we can look at right now which does not require any religious faith ...

Anonymous Leaks to the WashPost About the CIA's Russia Beliefs Are No Substitute for Evidence https://t.co/OB33Xbb49V

-- Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) December 10, 2016

U.S. Officials: Putin Personally Involved in U.S. Election Hack https://t.co/339F3GnbRQ

-- AM Joy w/Joy Reid (@amjoyshow) December 15, 2016

NSA staff used spy tools on spouses, ex-lovers. Think it takes a warrant? Nope, just somebody willing to do it. https://t.co/AW2UYitHzb

-- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) March 9, 2017

How to tell if the CIA is listening to your Samsung Smart TV: The blue light on the back of the TV is still on. https://t.co/NRlye8j4c2

-- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) March 22, 2017

RELEASE: CIA 'ELSA' malware can geolocate your Windows laptop or desktop by listening to surrounding WiFi signals https://t.co/XjyyXIqXAz pic.twitter.com/WCw6dgF9ql

-- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) June 28, 2017

We know from the Snowden leaks on the NSA, the CIA files released by WikiLeaks, and the ongoing controversies regarding FBI surveillance that the US intelligence community has the most expansive, most sophisticated and most intrusive surveillance network in the history of human civilization

Following the presidential election last year, anonymous sources from within the intelligence community were hemorrhaging leaks to the press on a regular basis that were damaging to the incoming administration.

If there was any evidence to be found that Donald Trump colluded with the Russian government to steal the 2016 election using hackers and propaganda, the US intelligence community would have found it and leaked it to the New York Times or the Washington Post last year.

Mueller isn't going to find anything in 2017 that these vast, sprawling networks wouldn't have found in 2016. He's not going to find anything by "following the money" that couldn't be found infinitely more efficaciously via Orwellian espionage. The factions within the intelligence community that were working to sabotage the incoming administration last year would have leaked proof of collusion if they'd had it. They did not have it then, and they do not have it now. Mueller will continue finding evidence of corruption throughout his investigation, since corruption is to DC insiders as water is to fish, but he will not find evidence of collusion to win the 2016 election that will lead to Trump's impeachment. It will not happen.

This sits on top of all the many , many , many reasons to be extremely suspicious of the Russiagate narrative in the first place

Russia-gate's Shaky Doundation - The Russia-gate hysteria now routinely includes rhetoric about the U.S. being at "war" with nuclear-armed Russia, but the shaky factual foundation continues to show more cracks, as historian Daniel Herman describes.

Russigate Is More Fiction Than Fact - From accusations of Trump campaign collusion to Russian Facebook ad buys, the media has substituted hype for evidence.

The Big Fat Compendium Of Russiagate Debunkery - Russiagate is like a mirage: from a distance it looks like something, but once you move in for a closer look, there's nothing there. Nothing. Nothing solid, nothing substantial, nothing you can point at and say, "Here it is."

Humans are storytelling creatures.

The most significant and most underappreciated facet of our existence is how much of our interface with the world consists not of our direct experience of it, but of our mental stories about it. Combine that fact with the century of research and development that has gone into refining propaganda tactics and the US plutocracy's stranglehold on mainstream media , and you get a nation lost in establishment narratives. People forming their worldviews based on phantasms of the mind instead of concrete facts.

I've noticed a strange uptick in establishment loyalists speaking to me as though Trump-Russia collusion is already an established fact, and that I'm simply not well-informed. There is still the same amount of publicly available evidence for this collusion as there ever was (zero), so this tells me that the only thing which has changed is the narrative. Pundits/propagandists are increasingly speaking as though this is something that has already been established, and the people who consume that propaganda go out and circulate it as though it's an established fact. When you're not plugged into that echo chamber , though, it looks very weird.

This is why Russiagaters find my certainty that collusion will never be proven so intensely abrasive. Their entire worldview consists of pure narrative? -- ?literally nothing other than authoritative assertions from pundits who speak in a confident tone of voice? -- ?so when they encounter someone doing the same thing but with hard facts, it causes psychological discomfort. This discomfort is called cognitive dissonance. It's what being wrong feels like.

The Only People Who Still Believe In Russiagate Are Those Who Desperately Need To...

I mean, I get it. Really, I do. When I stop listening to the narratives of both his supporters and his detractors and just look at the hard facts, from my point of view Trump is doing some really shitty things and doesn't seem much different from his neoliberal neocon predecessors. Republicans are horrible, and he seems pretty much like a garden variety Republican who says rude things on Twitter. If I look at those hard facts, then add in two years of psychological brutalization by the corporate media telling Americans that Trump is an evil Nazi who will turn the country into a smouldering crater, I can understand why people would be in a hurry to get him out of office.

And when I converse with Russiagaters, that's generally what this boils down to. "Impeach Trump" is a punishment in search of a crime. They've been whipped into a frenzied state of fear by establishment psyops, and they want Mueller to pull a deus ex machina and save them from the evil orange monster. They believe Mueller will get Trump impeached for Russian collusion because they badly want to.

It's not going to happen, though. Deus ex Mueller isn't coming. You're going to have to solve your country's problems yourselves, America.

And this is actually a good thing, because Trump is not the source of your country's problems. Believing that a Trump impeachment will fix any of America's major ills is like believing cough suppressants cure pneumonia. What do you get when you have pneumonia and you take cough suppressants instead of antibiotics? You get wrong-sounding Muppets, that's what.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/4JFkHuIUwF0

[Nov 13, 2017] Why Robert Mueller Was Selected To Be The Special Prosecutor

It might well be that Chrystal night in KSA can be a serious blow to fouces which want to depose President Trump. People arrested, especally prince Bandar know way too much. I wonder what will happen if Trump manage to get from Mohammed bin Salman protocols of interrogation of Price Bandarr on interesting to him topics.
Notable quotes:
"... The Saudis were also shielded from Washington's foreign-policy bureaucracy. A government expert on Saudi affairs told me that Prince Bandar dealt exclusively with the men at the top, and never met with desk officers and the like. "Only a tiny handful of people inside the government are familiar with U.S.-Saudi relations," he explained. "And that is purposeful. ..."
"... Both Mueller and Comey were high enough "at the top" so as to know what the people below them needed to hide in order to succeed in their careers ..."
"... William Perry, who was the United States Secretary of Defense at the time that this bombing happened, said in an interview in June 2007 that "he now believes al-Qaida rather than Iran was behind a 1996 truck bombing at an American military base."[25] ..."
"... Although they'd been aware of each other for years, sharing their similar orbits, Comey and Mueller were first brought together professionally by then-FBI director Louis Freeh in the opening days of the Bush administration. As the Bush administration took office in 2001, Freeh asked Bob Mueller, who was acting as John Ashcroft's deputy attorney general, to transfer the [Khobar] case to Comey. ..."
"... So, Comey and Mueller were brought in by Freeh because Freeh was about to retire and he wanted successors who would be committed to the theory of the case, that Freeh had gotten from Prince Bandar. If Comey and Mueller wouldn't go along with that torture-extracted 'testimony' as 'evidence', then their ability to become appointed head the FBI would have been zero. Freeh, Comey, and Mueller are a team - a team that serves the Bushes and the Sauds . But not the American public. ..."
"... CLOSING NOTE: This article had been submitted to, and rejected by, the 39 publications listed here at the bottom, sent to each as an exclusive, but since they all rejected it without comment, I now am sending it not just to them but to the entire U.S. newsmedia, on a non-exclusive and free-of-charge basis to publish. ..."
Nov 12, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

It all began with the 1996 bombing of the Khobar Towers apartment complex in the Saudi city of Khobar, which killed 19 U.S. military, who worked at the Dharan air base three miles away.

That incident became the lynchpin of the accusation by the Saudi royal family, the U.S. State Department , and the CIA , that Iran is the foremost state sponsor of terrorism .

Both Robert Mueller and his longtime ally James Comey (the latter of whose firing as the FBI chief, by U.S. President Trump, had sparked the appointment of Mueller to become the Special Counsel investigating the U.S. President) performed crucial roles in establishing that the Khobar Towers bombing had been a Hezbollah operation run by the Iranian Government - and, starting upon this basis, in helping to develop the case that Iran "is the foremost state sponsor of terrorism."

However, as has been made clear by several great independent investigative journalists, on the basis of far more-solid documentation than the official account, the Khobar Towers bombing was instead entirely a fundamentalist-Sunni operation, specifically perpetrated by Al Qaeda, which hates Shia and which also hates America's military presence in the Middle East. Osama bin Laden's claim of the bombing's having been done by Al Qaeda, was, in fact, entirely honest and accurate.

America's "Deep State," which extends to Saudi Arabia and to a number of other Governments - it's an international network - is deeply committed to supporting the fundamentalist-Sunni war to conquer and destroy Shia Islam, and not merely to conquer the leading Shia nation, which is Iran. The U.S. Government has intensely taken a side in the Sunni-Shia religious war. That war is comparable in some respects to the 30 Years' War (1618-1648) between Catholics and Protestants , which killed an estimated eight million Europeans; and, both the United States and Israel have clearly joined with the fundamentalist-Sunni leaders, against Iran, and against Shia generally.

The reasons behind the prevailing lies about this matter will also be documented here. Discrepancies between the official story and the solidly documented facts, need to be explained, in order for a reader to be able to understand truthfully why Mueller (who cooperated with Comey in order to rig the official account of the bombing, so as to condemn Iran and Hezbollah instead of Al Qaeda) received his appointment. This is also important in order to understand why Trump, though rabidly anti-Iranian himself, is nonetheless insufficiently anti-Iranian to satisfy the Sauds, Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, or the rest of the U.S.-and-allied Deep State.

Before proceeding further here, however, the statistical falseness of the allegation that Iran is the foremost state-sponsor of terrorism has to be clearly recognized as being the ultimate fact ; because, if this entire question - to which Mueller and Comey contributed so importantly to answering by their identifying Iran (and Shia generally) as being precisely that ('the foremost state sponsor of terrorism') -- can be assessed at all objectively, then the statistical answer to it would certainly be the objective one.

Wikipedia's article on "Iran and state-sponsored terrorism" says: "According to the Global Terrorism Database , the majority of deaths, more than 94% attributed to Islamic terrorism since 2001, were perpetrated by Sunni jihadists of the Islamic State , al-Qaeda and others. [3] [4] ." Only 6% were Shiites, at all -- from any country. Similarly, my own independent study of 54 especially prominent global instances of Islamic terrorism was headlined (and reported that) "All Islamic Terrorism Is Perpetrated by Fundamentalist Sunnis, Except Terrorism Against Israel." (The anti-Israel terrorist instances might constitute the "6%" which was referred to in the Wikipedia article, but that article provided no good link to its source for the "6%" figure.)

So: the basic allegation is false, that Iran is the foremost state-sponsor of terrorism; the general allegation isn't anywhere near to being true. It's a lie.

More specifically, now, regarding the Khobar Towers incident, which triggered the start of this fraudulent generalization:

The Saudi royal family asserted, immediately after the bombing, that the attack had been perpetrated by jihadists who had returned from Afghanistan and who were now fighting to overthrow Saudi Arabia's Government (the royal Saud family).

For example, on 15 August 1996, the New York Times headlined "Saudi Rebels Are Main Suspects In June Bombing of a U.S. Base" , and reported that, "The Government of Saudi Arabia now believes that native Saudi Islamic militants, including many veterans of the Afghan war, carried out the June 25 bombing that killed 19 American servicemen at a base in Dhahran, Saudi officials said today." However, the "mujahideen" who had fought in Afghanistan were paid and backed both by the Sauds and by the U.S. Government, For example, as early as 1979, Zbigniew Brzezinski flew into Pakistan and exhorted the Taliban there to become mujahideen in Afghanistan because "That land over there is yours; you'll go back to it one day, because your fight will prevail, and you will have your homes and your mosques back again, because your cause is right and God is on your side."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/A9RCFZnWGE0

Then, starting in 1980, "From the Pakistani border, bin Laden raises funds and provides the mujahedeen with logistical and humanitarian aid." So, the Sauds' allegation that the Khobar bombers had been "veterans of the Afghan war" would have meant that they had been foot-soldiers for the U.S.-Saudi operation in Afghanistan. Both the U.S. Government and the Saud family (who own the Saudi Government) hate Shia and especially hate Iran. Hezbollah are Shia, and they are extremely pro-Iran. How likely is it that Hezbollah, anywhere, would have been fighting under the command of Al Qaeda, or of any other fundamentalist-Sunni jihadist organization that calls all Shia "infidels"? So, the Sauds' account of the Khobar Towers bombing is fishy, at best.

Furthermore, a Google-search for the phrase "Hezbollah in Afghanistan" turns up only "6 results," and all of them say nothing about any "Hezbollah in Afghanistan." No report comes up about such a thing, for any year, or any period. The only countries where Hezbollah was reported to exist were Iran, Syria, and Lebanon. One of the links in that Google search was globally comprehensive for the year 2007, the Center on International Cooperation's "Annual Review of Global Peace Operations -- 2007" . It included reports on wars during that year, in 26 countries, and the chapter for Afghanistan (pages 52-58) doesn't mention Hezbollah even once. However, a search for the phrase "Hezbollah Afghanistan" does bring up "Syria's Other Foreign Fighters: Iran's Afghan and Pakistani Mercenaries" , at the neoconservative (and thus favoring not only the American aristocracy but its allied aristocracies -- especially in Saudi Arabia and Israel) The National Interest, dated 20 November 2015. That article says, "The liwa' fatimiyun (Fatimiyun Brigade) is composed exclusively of Afghans and fights under the auspices of Hezbollah Afghanistan," based in Syria. Other supposed foreign Shiites trying to overthrow Syria's Government are mentioned, as being supposedly "Pakistanis fighting in Syria under the Hezbollah flag." However, if these allegations are true, then those men would be opponents of Syria's secular government, which is headed by the secular Shiite Bashar al-Assad, who is being attacked by fundamentalist Sunnis -- including both ISIS and Al Qaeda there -- who are trying to kill Hezbollah in Syria, who are, in fact, defending Assad. (Such illogical 'historical' accounts as that, are normal in neoconservative publications -- counterfactuality is entirely acceptable to them.) Either that, or else the alleged Shiite Pakistanis who are fighting in Syria to overthrow the Shiite Assad and replace him with a fundamentalist Sunni regime, would be -- not actually members of Hezbollah, but instead -- Shiites from Pakistan who came to Syria in order to help actually not to overthrow the Government but to defend it against its rabidly anti-Shia attackers. That's the opposite of the assumption that The National Interest made, but it conceivably could be the case. A Pew survey scientifically randomly sampled 1,512 Pakistanis, and found that 1,450 of them declared themselves to be "Muslim," which is 96%. It also found that 94% of Pakistanis (of any or no faith) say that religion is "very important" in their lives, and found that 81% of the Muslims said they were "Sunni," 6% said they were "Shiite," and 12% said they were "Just a Muslim." So, only 6% of Pakistanis identify themselves specifically as "Shia." That is such a small percentage of Shiites in Pakistan, as to make unlikely any significant contribution that Pakistanis would be providing to the defense of Syria, which is at least 1,800 miles or 2,900 kilometers, away -- not even in the same general region. But, in any case, that neoconservative magazine's assumptions regarding the entire matter are clearly false.

Clearly, then, the logical feasibility of the U.S. Government's case against Iran is so tiny as to constitute almost an absolute impossibility of that case being true.

Now, then, let's consider the specifics of the case

The great investigative journalist Greg Palast, in his 2003 The Best Democracy Money Can Buy (pages 101-102), wrote:

True-blue Democrats may want to skip the next paragraphs. If President Bush put the kibosh on investigations of Saudi funding of terror and nuclear bomb programs, this was merely taking a policy of Bill Clinton one step further.

Following the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia, Clinton hunted Osama with a passion -- but a passion circumscribed by the desire to protect the sheikdom sitting atop our oil lifeline. In 1994, a Saudi diplomat defected to the United States with 14,000 pages of documents from the kingdom's sealed file cabinets. This mother lode of intelligence included evidence of plans for the assassination of Saudi opponents living in the West and, tantalizingly, details of the $7 billion the Saudis gave to Saddam Hussein for his nuclear program -- the first attempt to build an Islamic bomb. The Saudi government, according to the defector, Mohammed Al Khilewi, slipped Saddam the nuclear loot during the Reagan and Bush Sr. years when our government still thought Saddam too marvelous for words [because he was trying to slaughter Shiite Iran]. The thought was that he would only use the bomb to vaporize Iranians [which the rulers of both the U.S. and Saudi Arabia -- and of Israel -- would love].

Clinton granted the Saudi defector asylum, but barred the FBI from looking at the documents. Al Khilewi's New York lawyer, Michael Wildes, told me he was stunned. Wildes handles some of America's most security-sensitive asylum cases. "We said (to the FBI), 'Here, take the documents! Go get some bad guys with them! We'll even pay for the photocopying!" But the agents who came to his office had been ordered not to accept evidence of Saudi criminal activity, even on U.S. soil.

In 1997, the Canadians caught and extradited to America one of the [Saudi-Government-alleged] Khobar Towers attackers. In 1999, Vernon Jordan's law firm stepped in and -- poof! -- the [Saudi-alleged] killer was shipped back to Saudi Arabia before he could reveal all he knew about Al Qaeda (valuable) and the Saudis (embarrassing). I reviewed but was not permitted to take notes on, the alleged [finally, Palast is getting that right] terrorist's debriefing by the FBI. To my admittedly inexpert eyes, there was enough on Al Qaeda to make him a source on terrorists worth holding on to. Not that he was set free -- he's in one of the kingdom's dungeons [likelier dead soon after arriving back in Saudi Arabia] -- but his info is sealed up with him. The terrorist's extradition was "Clinton's." "Clinton's parting kiss to the Saudis," as one insider put it.

Another great investigative journalist is Seymour Hersh, who in the 22 October 2001 issue of the New Yorker, headlined "King's Ransom" and he opened:

Since 1994 or earlier, the National Security Agency has been collecting electronic intercepts of conversations between members of the Saudi Arabian royal family, which is headed by King Fahd. The intercepts depict a regime increasingly corrupt, alienated from the country's religious rank and file, and so weakened and frightened that it has brokered its future by channelling hundreds of millions of dollars in what amounts to protection money to fundamentalist groups that wish to overthrow it.

The intercepts have demonstrated to analysts that by 1996 Saudi money was supporting Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda and other extremist groups in Afghanistan, Lebanon, Yemen, and Central Asia, and throughout the Persian Gulf region. "Ninety-six is the key year," one American intelligence official told me. "Bin Laden hooked up to all the bad guys -- it's like the Grand Alliance -- and had a capability for conducting large-scale operations." The Saudi regime, he said, had "gone to the dark side."

Subsequently, he noted:

In 1994, Mohammed al-Khilewi, the first secretary at the Saudi Mission to the United Nations, defected and sought political asylum in the United States. He brought with him, according to his New York lawyer, Michael J. Wildes, some fourteen thousand internal government documents depicting the Saudi royal family's corruption, human-rights abuses, and financial support for terrorists.

He claimed to have evidence that the Saudis had given financial and technical support to Hamas, the extremist Islamic group whose target is Israel. There was a meeting at the lawyer's office with two F.B.I. agents and an Assistant United States Attorney. "We gave them a sampling of the documents and put them on the table," Wildes told me last week. "But the agents refused to accept them." He and his client heard nothing further from federal authorities. Al-Khilewi, who was granted asylum, is now living under cover.

The Saudis were also shielded from Washington's foreign-policy bureaucracy. A government expert on Saudi affairs told me that Prince Bandar dealt exclusively with the men at the top, and never met with desk officers and the like. "Only a tiny handful of people inside the government are familiar with U.S.-Saudi relations," he explained. "And that is purposeful."

Both Mueller and Comey were high enough "at the top" so as to know what the people below them needed to hide in order to succeed in their careers.

The New York Times's report , on 15 August 1996, quoted a leading Saudi dissident in London as asserting that, "As far as I know, Prince Nayef is keeping the Americans away from all the details at this point." This report went on: "In a statement responding to the earlier reports of confessions, Prince Nayef said Saudi Arabia would make an announcement as soon as the investigation is completed. His comments were also viewed as refuting earlier suggestions by Secretary of Defense William J. Perry, who had said that Saudi investigations might point to an Iranian connection." In other words, at that time (as of August 15th), the U.S. official was suggesting "an Iranian connection" but the Saudi official wasn't -- at least, not yet -- and the expectation was that "confessions" would be providing the decisive 'evidence'. However, these 'confessions', in Saudi cases are typically 'information' extracted under torture, and, where that fails to obtain the 'information' that's desired by the Government, then threats to destroy the person's immediate family are applied; so, the Sauds famously usually do get exactly the 'information' that they want (regardless of whether it's true).

The Wikipedia article "Khobar Towers bombing" summarizes the 'findings' by the U.S. FBI and courts, and ignores the Sauds' 'investigation(s)', because nothing was ever made public from the Sauds' Government or officials or anyone there, about what they 'found' (other than 'found' by torture). Wikipedia's article, which is based entirely upon the U.S. Government (the first party to broach publicly the possibility of "an Iranian connection") states flatly, right up front, "Perpetrators: Hezbollah Al-Hejaz (English: Party of God in the Hijaz)." In common parlance, that's Hezbollah, an "Iranian connection" -- exactly what the U.S. Government wanted.

Here's what that article asserts regarding the operations of the alleged mastermind:

In June 2001, an indictment was issued in United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in Alexandria, Virginia charging the following people with murder, conspiracy, and other charges related to the bombing:[18]

Ahmed Ibrahim Al-Mughassil

Al-Mughassil disappeared from the 'news' after the Sauds announced his capture in 2015, but Wikipedia on 6 November 2017 closed its bizarre article about him by saying, without comment, "Al-Mughassil was believed to be living in Iran.[1][2]" That footnote [1] linked to Front Page mag. in 2005, which actually said nothing of the sort ; footnote [2] linked to FDD in 2006, which actually said nothing of the sort . The obvious likeliest explanation for Wikipedia's blatant falsehoods there is Wikipedia's being edited by the CIA , which serves the Sauds, just like the rest of America's federal Government does.

The Wikipedia article then continued by listing the other alleged defendants:

In July 2001, Saudi Arabia said that eleven of the people indicted in the US were in custody in Saudi prisons, and were to be tried in Saudi court, as the country refused to extradite any of them to the United States to stand trial.[19] The government has not since made public the outcome of the trial or the whereabouts of the prisoners.

All six of the named persons there were Shiites in Saudi Arabia. The respective Wikipedia articles on each provide no evidence that any of them was at all involved in the bombing. However, the article on Hani al-Sayegh , who was living in Canada, is extraordinarily honest: it indicates that he said he had had nothing whatsoever to do with any bombings, nor any terrorism at all, and that the U.S. Government tried to get him to confess to something on the basis of which he could be tried and convicted in the U.S., but that he continued to resist all plea-offers, and to maintain that they were seeking to get him to lie, which he would not do. So, since the U.S. would not torture him on U.S. soil, the U.S. deported him "to Saudi Arabia on October 10, 1999 where it was assumed he would be executed upon arrival.[3][12]." But the Saudi regime never announced anything about any of the men they were charging in the Khobar Towers bombing.

The FBI issued charges against al-Sayegh and 12 others (all allegedly Hezbollah) on 21 June 2001 , for the bombing; and, since that time, the only publication of their names has been in regards to the mere presumption that they were guilty. Their indictments in the U.S. (without evidence), and (since the Saudi Government wouldn't say anything about them -- not even whether they were in prison or free there) the charge in U.S. courts that Iran had helped them to do it, were 100% based upon that 'evidence'. Therefore, Iran was declared guilty in U.S. courts, and fined, again , and again , over $500 million in all, without any reliable evidence, at all, that Iran had anything to do with the Khobar Towers bombing. And, not a cent of those fines was paid; but the U.S. Government's purpose was served nonetheless: getting Iran's 'guilt' onto the official record, such that Wikipedia, for example could say "Perpetrators: Hezbollah Al-Hejaz (English: Party of God in the Hijaz)."

The Wikipedia article on the Khobar Towers bombing closed, however, by saying:

William Perry, who was the United States Secretary of Defense at the time that this bombing happened, said in an interview in June 2007 that "he now believes al-Qaida rather than Iran was behind a 1996 truck bombing at an American military base."[25]

On December 22, 2006, federal judge Royce C. Lamberth ruled that Iran and Hezbollah were responsible for the attack, stating that the leading experts on Hezbollah presented "overwhelming" evidence of the group's involvement and that six captured Hezbollah members detailed the role of Iranian officials in providing money, plans, and maps.[4] This decision was reached as a default judgment, however, in which the Iranian government was not represented in court, and had no opportunity to challenge the allegations.

People who trust the U.S. Government's honesty will interpret the outcome as displaying legal and judicial incompetency, not as displaying political and propagandistic competency.

William Perry announced his opinion only after the 2006 court 'finding' of Iran's 'guilt' in the case. The UPI article on this opened and closed as follows:

Perry: U.S. eyed Iran attack after bombing

Published: June 6, 2007 at 4:25 PM

WASHINGTON, June 6 (UPI) -- A former U.S. defense secretary says he now believes al-Qaida rather than Iran was behind a 1996 truck bombing at an American military base.

Former Defense Secretary William Perry said he had a contingency plan to attack Iran if the link had been proven, but evidence was not to either his nor President Bill Clinton's satisfaction.

The attack would have struck "at a number of their military facilities that would have weakened -- substantially weakened ... the Iranian navy and air force," he said in New York Tuesday during a speech to the Council on Foreign Relations.

"I believe that the Khobar Tower bombing was probably masterminded by Osama bin Laden," Perry said. "I can't be sure of that, but in retrospect, that's what I believe. At the time, he was not a suspect. At the time ... all of the evidence was pointing to Iran."

He said al-Qaida did not emerge as a major threat until Clinton's second term.

"We probably should have been more concerned about it at the time than we were but in the first term we did not see Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida as a major factor, or one that we were concerned with," he said.

In 2001, the U.S. Justice Department announced a 46-count indictment against 13 Saudis and one Lebanese man in the bombing. All were allegedly connected to Hezbollah, a terrorist group the United States believes is linked to Iran.

Perry said the FBI strongly believed at the time the bombing was ordered by Iran, but Saudi officials tried to discourage that theory.

"They feared what action we would take. They rightly feared it. In fact, I had a contingency plan for a strike on Iran, if it had been if it had been clearly established. But it was never clearly established, and so we never did that," Perry said.

So, although Wikipedia started by alleging "Perpetrators: Hezbollah Al-Hejaz (English: Party of God in the Hijaz)" -- and in plain language, that's Hezbollah -- it ended by kaboshing that very theory of the case, which the Wikipedia article had been 'documenting' (with bad logic and some false 'facts').

Subsequently, the fine investigative journalist Gareth Porter explained how Perry had come to think that Iran and Hezbollah had been the culprit. Perry had trusted the head of the FBI, Louis Freeh. Perry didn't know that, behind the scenes, Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan al-Saud (who was his family's U.S. Ambassador) had told Freeh that Iran and Hezbollah did it. Furthermore, the Sauds had actually blocked the FBI's own investigators from having access to the site or to any of the evidence (other than by providing Freeh himself access to the torture-extracted 'confessions'). Initially, in fact, the Sauds even started bulldozing the site.

The first part of Porter's five-part report was titled "EXCLUSIVE -- PART 1: Al Qaeda Excluded from the Suspects List" . It said: "The Saudi bulldozing stopped only after Scott Erskine, the supervisory FBI special agent for international terrorism investigations, threatened that Secretary of State Warren Christopher, who happened to be in Saudi Arabia when the bomb exploded, would intervene personally on the matter." It said there was: "a systematic effort by the Saudis to obstruct any U.S. investigation of the bombing and to deceive the United States about who was responsible for the bombing. The Saudi regime steered the FBI investigation toward Iran and its Saudi Shi'a allies with the apparent intention of keeping U.S. officials away from a trail of evidence that would have led to Osama bin Laden and a complex set of ties between the regime and the Saudi terrorist organiser."

The second part was titled "EXCLUSIVE -- PART 2: Saudi Account of Khobar Bore Telltale Signs of Fraud" .

The third part was titled "EXCLUSIVE -- PART 3: U.S. Officials Leaked a False Story Blaming Iran" .

The fourth part was titled "EXCLUSIVE -- PART 4: FBI Ignored Compelling Evidence of bin Laden Role" . It noted that, " In October 1996, after having issued yet another fatwa calling on Muslims to drive U.S. soldiers out of the Kingdom, bin Laden was quoted in al Quds al Arabi, the Palestinian daily published in London, as saying, 'The crusader army was shattered when we bombed Khobar.'"

The fifth part was titled "EXCLUSIVE -- PART 5: Freeh Became "Defence Lawyer" for Saudis on Khobar" . This part had the most hair-raising details:

The key to the success of the Saudi deception was FBI director Louis Freeh, who took personal charge of the FBI investigation, letting it be known within the Bureau that he was the "case officer" for the probe, according to former FBI officials. Freeh allowed Saudi Ambassador Prince Bandar bin Sultan to convince him that Iran was involved in the bombing, and that President Bill Clinton, for whom he had formed a visceral dislike, "had no interest in confronting the fact that Iran had blown up the towers," as Freeh wrote in his memoirs.

The Khobar Towers investigation soon became Freeh's vendetta against Clinton. "Freeh was pursuing this for his own personal agenda," says former FBI agent Jack Cloonan.

A former high-ranking FBI official recalls that Freeh "was always meeting with Bandar". And many of the meetings were not in Freeh's office but at Bandar's 38-room home in McLean, Virginia. Meanwhile, the Saudis were refusing the most basic FBI requests for cooperation. Freeh quickly made Iranian and Saudi Shi'a responsibility for the bombing the official premise of the investigation, excluding from the inquiry the hypothesis that Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda organisation had carried out the Khobar Towers bombing.

The CIA's bin Laden unit, which had only been established in early 1996, was also excluded by CIA leadership from that Agency's work on the bombing.

Finally, in order to bring his exhaustive investigation up-to-date, Porter headlined on 1 September 2015, "Who Bombed Khobar Towers? Anatomy of a Crooked Terrorism Investigation" . Here's one particularly forceful portion of it:

In order to build a legal case against Iran and Shi'a Saudis, Freeh had to get access to the Shi'a detainees who had confessed. But the Saudis never agreed to allow FBI officials to interview them. In early November 1998, Freeh sent an FBI team to observe Saudi secret police officials asking eight Shi'a detainees the FBI's questions from behind a one-way mirror at the Riyadh detention center.

By then Saudi secret police had already had two and half years to coach the detainees on what to say, under the threat of more torture. But Freeh didn't care. "For Louis, if they would let us in the room, that was the important thing," a senior FBI official involved in the Khobar investigation told me. "We would have gone over there and gotten the answers even if they had been propped up."

But the Justice Department refused to go ahead with an indictment based on the information the FBI team brought back. Department lawyers knew the Shi'a detainees had been subject to torture, so they have ruled that the confessions were not valid.

In other words: the head of the FBI believed torture-extracted 'confessions' as if such would meet U.S. rules of evidence -- which they don't. And coaching of witnesses is likewise prohibited -- under U.S. laws.

On 30 May 2013, The Washingtonian headlined "Forged Under Fire -- Bob Mueller and Jim Comey's Unusual Friendship" and Garrett M. Graff reported:

Although they'd been aware of each other for years, sharing their similar orbits, Comey and Mueller were first brought together professionally by then-FBI director Louis Freeh in the opening days of the Bush administration. As the Bush administration took office in 2001, Freeh asked Bob Mueller, who was acting as John Ashcroft's deputy attorney general, to transfer the [Khobar] case to Comey.

When he finally did so, Mueller called Comey with a warning: "Wilma Lewis is going to be so pissed." Indeed, Lewis blasted the decision, as well as both Freeh and Mueller personally, in a press release, saying the move was "ill-conceived and ill-considered." But Freeh's gambit paid off.

Within weeks, Comey had pulled together the indictment. During a National Security Council briefing at the White House, under the watchful gaze of Secretary of State Colin Powell, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, Comey presented overwhelming evidence of Iran's involvement.

On the eve of the expiration of the statute of limitations, fourteen individuals were indicted for the attack. Freeh, who stepped down the next day, said the indictment was "a major step."

So, Comey and Mueller were brought in by Freeh because Freeh was about to retire and he wanted successors who would be committed to the theory of the case, that Freeh had gotten from Prince Bandar. If Comey and Mueller wouldn't go along with that torture-extracted 'testimony' as 'evidence', then their ability to become appointed head the FBI would have been zero. Freeh, Comey, and Mueller are a team - a team that serves the Bushes and the Sauds . But not the American public.

Our continuing war against Iran is due entirely to their crucial assistance. The Deep State appoints such individuals.

* * *

CLOSING NOTE: This article had been submitted to, and rejected by, the 39 publications listed here at the bottom, sent to each as an exclusive, but since they all rejected it without comment, I now am sending it not just to them but to the entire U.S. newsmedia, on a non-exclusive and free-of-charge basis to publish. Since none of them will pay me for publishing it, I shall be happy if any publish it without charge, even small 'alternative news' sites online, because - and especially if a mainstream newsmedium relents and decides to publish it - then perhaps the embargo against the truth of such important matters being published in the United States and its vassal nations, will come to be broken , and the 'news'media in America and in those other countries, might then terminate being actually the U.S-regime's propaganda-media, and might finally begin to pay penance for their all having helped the U.S. Government to deceive the American (and allied-nations') public into supporting the regime's entirely lie-based invasions of Afghanistan in 2001, of Iraq in 2003, of Libya in 2012, of Syria since 2012, of U.S. coups elsewhere (such as in Ukraine ), and, now, potentially repeating it yet again with invasions or coups against Iran or other countries that the U.S. elite want to grab and add to their growing U.S. empire.

If Iran becomes invaded, or another U.S. coup becomes perpetrated there (such as in 1953 ), then perhaps Russia's only realistic response -- as being the ultimate U.S. target -- will be a blitz nuclear attack to destroy the United States, in recognition of the U.S. Government's fanatical reach to control a total global empire -- total global strangulation of freedom and of peace, everywhere. After all, if Russia waits till after a U.S. lie-based invasion of Iran, then it will be simply waiting for a blitz nuclear attack by the U.S. and its NATO alliance against Russia itself, which would be even worse for the world than Russia's striking first -- though the world would end, either way. The U.S. Government now seems to be an out-of-control spreading cancer, a terminal threat to the world in every regard. It's already recognized throughout the world as being "the greatest threat to peace in the world today" . And its 'news'media have helped to keep it that way.

Here is the list of 39 publications that this article had been submitted to as an exclusive (and, of course, it's now being submitted to them, too, yet again, but this time on a non-exclusive, non-fee, basis, along with being submitted to all the rest of the regime's press, including broadcast media):

McClatchy newspapers, New York Times, Washington Post, The Atlantic, Harper's, TIME, The New Republic, Foreign Policy, Mother Jones, The Nation, Progressive, National Review, New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Business Week, Forbes, Politico, thedailybeast, huffingtonpost, slate, bloomberg, businessinsider, newsweek, theintercept, breitbart, alternet, newsbud, spiked-online, vice, mintpressnews, truthdig, truth-out, Independent, Guardian, Daily Mail, Spectator, London Review of Books, New Statesman, Spiegel.

* * *

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They're Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010 , and of CHRIST'S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity .

[Nov 11, 2017] Trump Points To Falsehoods In Russian Hacking Claims - Media Still Ignore Them

Possibly all of the Russia-gate allegations, which have been taken on faith by Democratic partisans and members of the anti-Trump Resistance, trace back to claims paid for or generated by Democrats. If for a moment one could remove the often justified hatred many people feel toward Trump, it would be impossible to avoid the impression that the scandal may have been devised by the DNC and the Clinton camp in league with Obama's intelligence chiefs to serve political and geopolitical aims. In other words this is a sophisticated false flag operation.
Even more alarmingly (what really smells like a part on intelligence agencies coup d'état against Trump ) is the basis for much of the Jan. 6 intelligence "assessment" by those "hand-picked" analysts from three U.S. intelligence agencies - the CIA, the FBI and the NSA - not all 17 agencies that Hillary Clinton continues to insist were involved. (Obama's intelligence chiefs, DNI Clapper and CIA Director John Brennan, publicly admitted that only three agencies took part and The New York Times printed a correction saving so.)
Notable quotes:
"... Well its three . And one is Brennan . And one is whatever. I mean, give me a break. They're political hacks . So you look at it, and then you have Brennan, you have Clapper and you have Comey . Comey's proven now to be a liar and he's proven to be a leaker. So you look at that. ..."
"... Trump gets it. He knows the weak points of the propaganda claims of "Russian hacking": Podesta and the fake Steele dossier, the DNC server, the lack of any FBI investigation of the alleged hack, the NYT's long false insistence on the '17 agencies' assessment, the "political hacks" who fitted their claims to the Obama/Clinton narrative. ..."
"... But neither the Washington Post nor the NY Times or others mention the crucial points Trump spelled out in their write-ups of the gaggle. There is no word on the DNC servers in them. Instead they create a claim of "Putin says and Trump just believes him". The do not name the facts and questions Trump listed to support his position. Taking up the valid questions Trump asked would of course require the news outlets to finally delve into them. We can't have that. ..."
"... Trump is not the brightest bulb and he is not well informed. I dislike nearly all of his policies. But he understands that the "Russian hacking" narrative is false and is carried by lunatic political hacks who want to push the U.S. back into a cold, or maybe even hot war with Russia, China, Iran and probably everyone else. ..."
"... I guess it could be that the DNC really was hacked, but maybe they faked the hack story, fed the story to Crowdstrike, then paid Crowdstrike a lot of money to fabricate a fairytale about Russian hacking... ..."
"... This Russian fairytale would be the bedrock of Hillary's campaign, and it gave her a reason to badmouth trump who intended to get along with Putin, which deeply offended the neocon Bolsheviks who've been running things since 9/11 ..."
"... If the hacking really happened, it's maybe more likely to have been the US NSA that did the hacking... that might explain why the DNC and Hillary were not alarmed by the hacking --if it happened-- and did nothing about it, and continued to write incriminating emails... ..."
"... Russia gate is Really Hillary Gate... And that's just the beginning as we consider the DNC lid coming off via Donna Brazile and the Uranium scandal. Mueller has been gatekeeper for the Deep State for OKC bombing, 911,...other False Flag...and now today's Intrigues. ..."
"... Back when Trump looked like he was in the running in the US presidential election, I wondered how one man, even if he was genuine, could without the backing of US intelligence, take down the deepstate/borg/whatever. Putin pulled Russia out of the nineties with key backing from patriotic intelligence and military leadership, but Trump even if genuine would be on his own. Just ordered 'Art of the deal' to try and understand Trump a bit more. Looks like he has just destroyed a big chunk of deep state financing so will be interesting to see how long he can stay alive. ..."
"... well, Mueller declined to find 9/11 evidence against bin laden... or maybe we should say, "he declined to manufacture evidence"... for some unkown reason... ..."
"... Can we just face the facts here that there is a coordinated effort by these elite to get Trump dethroned? What reason for this? Simple...he's a threat. ..."
"... Mike Whitney posted a great piece this week suggesting Brennan, Obama's political 'hack', is behind this mess - "Brennan spearheaded the anti-Russia campaign from the get-go. As early as August 2016, Brennan was providing classified briefings to ranking members of Congress expressing his conviction that Moscow was helping Trump to win the election. The former Director offered no proof to back up his claims nor has he since then. It was also Brennan who gradually persuaded Clapper, Comey and Morrell to join his anti-Russia jihad, although all were reluctant participants at first. Were they won over by compelling secret evidence that has been been withheld from the public?" - http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/48172.htm ..."
"... These are but a few sources digging and reporting on these bogus charges against Putin. I'd like to believe the majority of the U.S. electorate isn't being fooled by the nonsense. I can't speak for those who choose to remain inside the brainwashing corporate media bubble, but for those of us who divorced ourselves from their propaganda long ago ain't buying nor ever did buy into the muh Russia crap. ..."
"... Meanwhile, USG declares RT and Sputnik to be foreign agents and must register as such -- and Trump had nothing to do with that?!? ..."
"... The media is now now in permanent psy op mode, colonizing the public's mind and jamming people's ability to reason, think critically and even tell fact from fiction. It is only a matter of time before overt repression becomes widespread (to protect our freedoms of course) and the last remnants of democracy give way to an Orwellian/Huxleyite dystopia. ..."
"... CNN covers the Binney/Pompeo meeting, and describes Binney in the headline as a "conspiracy theorist": http://www.cnn.com/2017/11/07/politics/mike-pompeo-william-binney-meeting/index.html ..."
Nov 11, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

Trump Points To Falsehoods In "Russian Hacking" Claims - Media Still Ignore Them

During the flight of his recent Asia tour U.S. President Donal Trump held a press gaggle on board of the plane. Part of it were questions and answers about the alleged "Russian hacking" of the U.S. election.

There is no public transcript available yet but the Washington Post's Mark Berman provided a screenshot of some relevant parts:

Mark Berman @markberman - 6:20 AM - 11 Nov 2017

Full comment from @realDonaldTrump again questioning the US intel community conclusion that Russia meddled last year

In the attached transcript Trump talks about his very short encounter with the Russian President Putin in Hanoi:

Q: When did you bring up the issue of election meddling? Did you ask him a question?

A: Every time he sees me he says he didn't do that and I really believe that when he tells me that, he means it. But he says, I didn't do that. I think he is very insulted by it, ...
...
He says that very strongly and he really seems to be insulted by it he says he didn't do it.

Q: Even if he didn't bring it up one-on-one, do you believe him?

A: I think that he is very, very strong on the fact that didn't do it. And then you look and you look what's going on with Podesta , and you look at what's going on with the server from the DNC and why didn't the FBI take it ? Why did they leave it? Why did a third party look at the server and not the FBI ? You look at all of this stuff, and you say, what's going on here? And you hear it's 17 agencies. Well its three . And one is Brennan . And one is whatever. I mean, give me a break. They're political hacks . So you look at it, and then you have Brennan, you have Clapper and you have Comey . Comey's proven now to be a liar and he's proven to be a leaker. So you look at that. And you have President Putin very strongly, vehemently say he has nothing to do with that. Now, you are not going to get into an argument, you are going to start talking about Syria and the Ukraine.

Trump gets it. He knows the weak points of the propaganda claims of "Russian hacking": Podesta and the fake Steele dossier, the DNC server, the lack of any FBI investigation of the alleged hack, the NYT's long false insistence on the '17 agencies' assessment, the "political hacks" who fitted their claims to the Obama/Clinton narrative.

But neither the Washington Post nor the NY Times or others mention the crucial points Trump spelled out in their write-ups of the gaggle. There is no word on the DNC servers in them. Instead they create a claim of "Putin says and Trump just believes him". The do not name the facts and questions Trump listed to support his position. Taking up the valid questions Trump asked would of course require the news outlets to finally delve into them. We can't have that.

Instead we get more "Russian influence" claptrap. Like this from the once honorable Wired which headlines:

Here's the first evidence Russia used Twitter to influence Brexit

Russian interference in Brexit through targeted social media propaganda can be revealed for the first time. A cache of posts from 2016, seen by WIRED, shows how a coordinated network of Russian-based Twitter accounts spread racial hatred in an attempt to disrupt politics in the UK and Europe.

Interesting, enthralling, complicate and sensational ...
... until you get down to paragraph 14(!):

Surprisingly, all the posts around Brexit in this small snapshot were posted after the June vote

"Russian agents" influenced the U.S. election by buying mostly irrelevant Facebook ads - 25% of which were never seen by anyone and 56% of which were posted AFTER the election

"Russian-based Twitter accounts" influenced the Brexit vote in the UK by tweeting affirmative AFTER the vote happened

Trump is not the brightest bulb and he is not well informed. I dislike nearly all of his policies. But he understands that the "Russian hacking" narrative is false and is carried by lunatic political hacks who want to push the U.S. back into a cold, or maybe even hot war with Russia, China, Iran and probably everyone else.

Tannenhouser | Nov 11, 2017 2:15:01 PM | 1

"Trump is not the brightest bulb and he is not well informed. I dislike nearly all of his policies. But he understands that the "Russian hacking" narrative is false and is carried by lunatic political hacks who want to push the U.S. back into a cold, or maybe even hot war with Russia, China, Iran and probably everyone else."

I couldn't agree more B. The distraction to cover up the DNC crimes and the 'pay to play' antics during HRC's tenure at SECState are part of this nonsense as well.

james | Nov 11, 2017 2:21:31 PM | 2
thanks b.. i 2nd @1 tannenhousers comment above..
wadosy | Nov 11, 2017 2:31:10 PM | 3
the term "hacked" implies that someone came in on the internet, right?

I guess it could be that the DNC really was hacked, but maybe they faked the hack story, fed the story to Crowdstrike, then paid Crowdstrike a lot of money to fabricate a fairytale about Russian hacking...

This Russian fairytale would be the bedrock of Hillary's campaign, and it gave her a reason to badmouth trump who intended to get along with Putin, which deeply offended the neocon Bolsheviks who've been running things since 9/11

If the hacking really happened, it's maybe more likely to have been the US NSA that did the hacking... that might explain why the DNC and Hillary were not alarmed by the hacking --if it happened-- and did nothing about it, and continued to write incriminating emails...

...they assumed the hackers were on their side

OK, then, if the hacking was a fairytale, made up by Debbie and Hillary, and reinforced by Crowdstrike, then what? Maybe it doesn't make any difference in the long run, if the DNC was hacked or not

Whatever happened, the emails got out, Assange strongly hints that Seth Rich was the leak, Seth Rich was murdered, and his murder was intended to be a warning to people like Donna Brazile, who, after Seth was murdered, started drawing her office blinds because she didn't want to be sniped... presumably by the people who murdered Seth Rich

broders | Nov 11, 2017 2:33:17 PM | 4
the real question is : what is j.sessions doing ? and if nothing , why trump doesn't fire him ?
Brad | Nov 11, 2017 2:55:42 PM | 5
Russia gate is Really Hillary Gate... And that's just the beginning as we consider the DNC lid coming off via Donna Brazile and the Uranium scandal. Mueller has been gatekeeper for the Deep State for OKC bombing, 911,...other False Flag...and now today's Intrigues.

Will Podesta and Hillary escape?...or get Prison? John McCain with ISIS and photo opp,.. Evil in your face 24. If certain people are not in Prison....Mueller could wear the label Satan's guardian. ..and it wouldn't be exaggeration

Peter AU 1 | Nov 11, 2017 3:00:44 PM | 6
Back when Trump looked like he was in the running in the US presidential election, I wondered how one man, even if he was genuine, could without the backing of US intelligence, take down the deepstate/borg/whatever. Putin pulled Russia out of the nineties with key backing from patriotic intelligence and military leadership, but Trump even if genuine would be on his own. Just ordered 'Art of the deal' to try and understand Trump a bit more. Looks like he has just destroyed a big chunk of deep state financing so will be interesting to see how long he can stay alive.
wadosy | Nov 11, 2017 3:05:39 PM | 7

well, Mueller declined to find 9/11 evidence against bin laden... or maybe we should say, "he declined to manufacture evidence"... for some unkown reason...

whatever, if seth rich's murder was an attempt to terrorize politicians and the media into parroting the party line --like the anthrax letters did after 9/11-- it worked

donna is still saying, "the Russians dun it".

NemesisCalling | Nov 11, 2017 3:07:36 PM | 8
b, it is so funny that everytime you allude to Trump being in the right against the teeming hordes or globalist, anti-Russia elites, you always offer the caveat: "but...he's a bastard and I hate him."

Can we just face the facts here that there is a coordinated effort by these elite to get Trump dethroned? What reason for this? Simple...he's a threat.

Enemy of my enemy anyone?

P.s. I view him as an opportunist. a chameleon. At the very least, perhaps he realizes the absolute absurdity of trying to keep the house of cards aloft in the ME. So far, no wars, and a de-escalation in Syria. Pundits are talking about 3+% growth in US for first time in decade. I dont't know...perhaps Donald can cut and run in time to salvage some of the US prosperity.

PavewayIV | Nov 11, 2017 3:22:45 PM | 9
I'm almost inclined to think Trump is letting this Russian hack thing play out on purpose despite his Tweets to the contrary. Preventing the feds from 'investigating' it wouldn't make it go away, it would just cement the notion of guilt and a cover-up into the anti-Trump, anti-Russian segment of the public. More importantly, the similarly-inclined political/government leaders (pro-Hillary, DNC, politicized FBI and intel, neocons, deep state, whatever...) and MSM slowly expose themselves for what they are. They get too confident in the big lie actually working and go into a feeding frenzy. Trump trolls them on Twitter and they go insane.

When you want to catch sharks, you don't chase them around the ocean to hunt them. You chum the waters and wait for them to come to you. Trump isn't the one chumming the waters here - he's letting the sharks do that themselves.

I scratched my head like everyone else trying to figure out Trump's earlier incomprehensible hiring/firing volley his first few months. Maybe that was just a bit of theatre. Trump might not understand the 'little people' too much, but he does understand his opponent psychopaths (corporate, banking or government/intel) and how to use their basic flaws against them. 'Draining the swamp' sells well, but letting his opponents stick their necks out far enough before Trump's own Night of the Long Knives would (to me) be a far more effective strategy towards his ends. And probably much safer for him than Kennedy's approach.

Kind of worrying that one has to rely on outsider psychopaths to cull other psychopath's well-entrenched herds within the US government. Does that ever turn out well?

Laguerre | Nov 11, 2017 3:30:12 PM | 10
Was anything Trump did really illegal? It hasn't been demonstrated yet. The US does much the same in Russia.
h | Nov 11, 2017 3:31:16 PM | 11
Only the most strident partisans hold tightly to the Russian interference nonsense.

Those who simply want to deal in facts bother ourselves to self inform using multiple sources who have been trying to make sense of the dastardly twists and turns in this muh Russia whodunit scandal. The DNC emails, dossier, collusion the whole escapade, from the beginning, could be seen as being built on nothing more than quicksand.

Mike Whitney posted a great piece this week suggesting Brennan, Obama's political 'hack', is behind this mess - "Brennan spearheaded the anti-Russia campaign from the get-go. As early as August 2016, Brennan was providing classified briefings to ranking members of Congress expressing his conviction that Moscow was helping Trump to win the election. The former Director offered no proof to back up his claims nor has he since then. It was also Brennan who gradually persuaded Clapper, Comey and Morrell to join his anti-Russia jihad, although all were reluctant participants at first. Were they won over by compelling secret evidence that has been been withheld from the public?" - http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/48172.htm

Then you have Joe Lauria's outstanding piece which lived less than 24 hours at HuffPo before being disappeared - http://raymcgovern.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/CLEANOn-The-Origins-of-Russia-gate-_-HuffPost.pdf

And then you have the Intercept's piece on Binney's meeting with CIA's Pompeo with Ray McGovern providing a lot more detail and an interview with his favorite news outlet RT - http://raymcgovern.com/

Oh, and about Binney's meeting with Pompeo? Trump requested Pompeo meet with him. He did. But Pompeo, as of today, remains steadfast in supporting the ICA crap report Obama's political intel hacks put out.

These are but a few sources digging and reporting on these bogus charges against Putin. I'd like to believe the majority of the U.S. electorate isn't being fooled by the nonsense. I can't speak for those who choose to remain inside the brainwashing corporate media bubble, but for those of us who divorced ourselves from their propaganda long ago ain't buying nor ever did buy into the muh Russia crap.

wadosy | Nov 11, 2017 3:36:47 PM | 12
we got to wonder why donna brazile made such a fuss about Seth Rich. She's being way too cagey for comfort but even if we leave seth rich out of it, none of it make any sense

... ... ...

Muslim Dude | Nov 11, 2017 3:42:36 PM | 13
According to journalist, Liz Crokin and others online, Trump is pulling the biggest sting operation in history.

https://www.lizcrokin.com/hillaryclinton/mueller-president-trump-pulling-biggest-sting-history/

Also from a Youtube video I saw earlier there are claims this is what is happening.

1. Obama regime was chronically corrupt including sell of Uranium to Russia for bribes. Elements of the US military and intelligence were disgusted by this and approached Trump BEFORE the elections as a figure who could help them.

2. Trump decided to work with them and during his election campaign he deliberately made constant exaggerated claims of his supposed friendship with Putin, this was bait for the Democrats to smear him as a Putin-lover, Putin puppet.

3. Once elected, the whole "Trump is a Putin puppet" was allowed to run so that a huge demand for some sort of investigation in to Trump and his Russia links could be built. Only this investigation would in fact be used to target the Democrats and Clinton including for their corruption over the Uranium sales with the Russians.

4. This was apparently (according to these claims) the game plan from the beginning and Mueller is apparently going to work to convict Hillary Clinton and other senior Democrats.

I don't know how true this is, but it does answer a lot of questions and anomalies and also ties in with B's thesis that we are essentially seeing a quasi-military government in D.C. under Trump.

psychohistorian | Nov 11, 2017 3:49:19 PM | 14
@ PavewayIV who ended his comment with: "Kind of worrying that one has to rely on outsider psychopaths to cull other psychopath's well-entrenched herds within the US government. Does that ever turn out well? "

Yep! And we add our textual white noise to the rearranging of the deck chairs on the top deck of the good ship Humanity as it careens over the falls/into the shoals/pick-your-metaphor

PavewayIV | Nov 11, 2017 4:30:10 PM | 15
psychohistorian@14 - Captain to crew: "I will not have this ship go down looking like a garbage scow. Deck chairs will be arranged in a neat and orderly manner at all times!"
Augustin L | Nov 11, 2017 4:32:46 PM | 16
The orange Chump is using diversionary tactics. Will the mafia Front goy thief disclose his extensive exposure/links to Russian and foreign banks ?

The same media you're decrying here is also ignoring this week's paradise papers revelations about Wilbur Ross, Trump's commerce secretary and business links with Russian Israeli mobsters and oligarchs like Mogilevich. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IMhzkvWuXEM

There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what is not true. The other is to refuse to believe what is true. Can't fix stupid sociopathy. I pity deplorable goyims, They deserve their plight...

renfro | Nov 11, 2017 5:10:26 PM | 17
Please someone end this idiot circus! Russia hacked THE ELECTION ...hacked THE ELECTION ??? For the love of gawd..the ELECTION, meaning the voting was hacked.....it was NOT. Nothing has focused on Russian 'hacking' of VOTES. Russia 'if' they hacked, at best hacked some emails and info used to expose Hillary. And posted negative info on the net. So, so what? How many leakers weren't doing that?

I have had it with the Dems, they have IQs somewhere below that of cabbages. But I guess there are a certain number of citizens that will believe anything if it is repeated enough by their herd leaders.

notheonly1 | Nov 11, 2017 5:31:12 PM | 18
All this pathetic, lousy street theater resembling staging can only serve one important reason: Distraction. What is it that people need to be distracted from? That the US has turned openly into a military dictatorship? That the extermination proceedings are speeding up?

Hitler used gas chambers, as did the US after the war. While the first was a psychopathic dictator, the latter is a psychopathic society. It has spend trillions in research and design of lethal weapons and systems to exterminate any 'enemy'.

With all the technological progress, people do no longer need to be dragged to a gas chamber. The gas chamber will come to them. Sprayed into the atmosphere and making its way into earth's life systems.

Trump, Dump, Busch, Koch, Clinton, Reagan, Nixon - plutocratic hand puppets. It is not the people who decide where and when the ship sinks. It will be sunken for them - with all the useless eaters on board.

Jack Oliver | Nov 11, 2017 6:03:23 PM | 19
Trump is too stupid to realize that the very reason the election was rigged in his favour was - the derailment of ANY ZIO/US/Russia relations !! Their top priority ( as always) has been to keep Russia and Germany apart ! Russia's 'resources' and German 'innovation' is a match made in heaven - would spell the end of the US economy !
karlof1 | Nov 11, 2017 6:27:43 PM | 20
Not only did the Propaganda System refuse to correctly report as b details, but nowhere has it mentioned the defeat of Daesh, as Pepe Escobar discloses: "This is History in the making.

"And right on cue, VIRTUALLY NOTHING about this REAL ON THE GROUND VICTORY OF A REAL WAR ON TERROR is being covered by Western corporate media.

"No wonder. Because this was the work of Damascus, Russia, Hezbollah, Iran advisers, Baghdad and the PMUs – actually the "4+1" - and not the US-led "coalition" that includes Wahhabi mongrels House of Saud and UAE - that totally smashes to bits the monochord Washington narrative.

"So History in the making must be silenced." [Emphasis in original.] http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/48186.htm

Meanwhile, USG declares RT and Sputnik to be foreign agents and must register as such -- and Trump had nothing to do with that?!?

Temporarily Sane | Nov 11, 2017 6:30:23 PM | 21
The war on Syria and the Russian "hacking" debacle has corrupted the entire western media. Not that it was ever squeaky clean - far from it - but it was at least somewhat independent from the dominant establishment. There were pauses between the outrageous lies and blatant fact twisting and it did not overtly shill for neoliberal political parties and work overtime pushing massive amounts of propaganda on the public 24/7/365 and relentlessly demonize, in the most crude fashion imaginable, the leaders of some of the the world's most powerful countries and any sovereign nation that values its independence and freedom from Western exploitation.

The media is now now in permanent psy op mode, colonizing the public's mind and jamming people's ability to reason, think critically and even tell fact from fiction. It is only a matter of time before overt repression becomes widespread (to protect our freedoms of course) and the last remnants of democracy give way to an Orwellian/Huxleyite dystopia.

jayc | Nov 11, 2017 6:32:58 PM | 22
CNN covers the Binney/Pompeo meeting, and describes Binney in the headline as a "conspiracy theorist": http://www.cnn.com/2017/11/07/politics/mike-pompeo-william-binney-meeting/index.html
Peter AU 1 | Nov 11, 2017 6:37:08 PM | 23
karlof1 20

If by chance Trump or anyone is genuine about taking down the deep state, they cannot do it by running around in a pathetic attempt trying to fix small issues. They would have to leave the machine to carry on as normal and go for its foundations. I thought about this months ago, and now looking at the latest events, this could be what is happening.

gut bugs galore | Nov 11, 2017 6:52:35 PM | 24
Meanwhile a revolution threatening the federation of Australia is taking place in Canberra utilizing a formless and compliant press corps and a fake issue of dual citizenship. Chaos is a disease agent which has jumped out of the Middle Eastern laboratory into all western nations.
Krollchem | Nov 11, 2017 7:13:34 PM | 25
Educational Youtube videos on how the world works at "Rules for rulers"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rStL7niR7gs
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig_qpNfXHIU

[Nov 11, 2017] Saudi Crown Prince Consolidates Power With Anti-Corruption Arrests

Charge in corruption is a standard instrument in regime change effort. Most widely used in in color revolutions. So this is a pretty old way tested in xUSSR republics.
Nov 10, 2017 | angrybearblog.com

Everybody is against corruption, so it has become the new cool way to concentrate power in dictatorial societies to engage in an anti-corruption drive, as Putin and Xi Jinping have done. Actually corrupt people may well be arrested, but somehow included in the set of those arrested are rivals of the leader who are conveniently disposed of.

likbez , November 10, 2017 8:53 pm

Barkley,

You should probably think in a wider framework of color revolution, not in the narrow framework of (possibly inflated) corruption charges. This is about de-legitimization, not about the corruption per se.

BTW the charge in corruption is a standard tool used in color revolutions. So it is far from only "the new cool way to concentrate power in dictatorial societies". It is more of an old way to induce "regime change".

It is perfectly applicable to political struggle in neoliberal societies as well as we see now with Trump. Probably even more, as "greed is good" morale imperative implies. Also provides opponents of Trump high moral ground to attach him and his entourage.

We can start analysis from Trump campaign against Hillary. If it would be more interesting to analyze the current anti-Trump campaign from this angle. Especially recent Robert Mueller's indictments. We can view then as a kind of attempt to "import" color revolution methods of "regime change" into the USA in order to depose Trump.

In other words boomerang eventually returns.

Several listed in from https://www.sott.net/article/334026-SOTT-Exclusive-A-Purple-Color-revolution-in-the-US-Learn-the-signs-of-color-revolutions ) tell-tell signs of regime change is probably applicable to anti-Trump campaign.

== quote ==

The Chinese pastor Leung has outlined the 12 steps of regime change.

The key difference is that this time it is not the U.S. making regime change overseas, but in America itself to serve the powers that be. The 12 steps are:

1.Dispatch CIA, MI6 and other intelligence officers as students, tourists, volunteers, businessmen, reporters to the target country

2.Set up Non Governmental Organizations (NGO's) under the guise of humanitarianism to fight for "democracy" and "human rights" in order to attract advocates of freedom and ideals

3.Attract local traitors, especially academics, politicians, reporters, soldiers etc. through bribery or threaten those who have some stain in their life

4.If the target country has unions, bribe them

5.Pick a catchy theme or color for the revolution. Examples include the Praque spring (1968), Velvet Revolution (Eastern Europe, 1989), Rose Revolution (Georgia, 2003), Cedar Revolution (Lebanon, 2005), Orange Revolution (Ukraine 2004), Green Revolution (Iran), Jasmine Revolution, Arab Spring and even Hong Kong's Umbrella Revolution

6.Start protests for whatever reasons to kick off the revolution. It could be human rights, democracy, government corruption or electoral fraud. Evidence isn't necessary; an excuse will do.

7.Write protest signs and banners in English to let Americans see and get Americans politicians and civilians involved

8.Let those corrupted politicians, intellectuals and union leaders join the protests and call upon all people with grievances to join

9.The US and European mainstream media help by continuously emphasizing that the revolution is caused by injustice and thereby gaining the support of the majority

10.When the whole world is watching stage a false-flag action. The target government will soon be destabilized and lose support among its people

11.Add in violent agent provocateurs to provoke the police to use force. This will cause the target government to lose the support of other countries and become "delegitimized" by the international community

12.Send politicians to the US, EU, the UN to petition so that the target government will face the threat of economic sanctions, no-fly zones and even airstrikes and an armed rebel uprising.

Barkley Rosser , November 10, 2017 11:34 pm

Oh, I don't think so, Likbez. The really big numbers of arrests for corruption as part of a power grab have not been in color revolution nations, but in long estabilished regimes. So in China Xi Joinping has arrested about 1.4 million people in the CPC on anti-corruption charges since he took power. No wonder nobody was voting against him at the recent party congress.

Then we have Erdogan in Turkkey, who has arrested something like 70,000. Now a lot of those have been busted for supposedly being part of the Gulenist copu attempt, but many have been buseed for couurption. Yeah, color places do it, but these are the places with the reallyi big numbers.

Oh, and the numbers arrested in Saudi Arabia apparently now exceed 200, and that is not coloar revolution, nor is what has gone on in the US.

likbez , November 11, 2017 9:32 pm

"Oh, I don't think so, Likbez. The really big numbers of arrests for corruption as part of a power grab have not been in color revolution nations, but in long estabilished regimes."

Not true. After Ukrainian Maidan color revolution (2014) there were wide purges on corruption charges of supporters of ousted President Yanukovich.

The current "Russiagate" color revolution against Trump recently started to concentrate on corruption charges too (Mueller's first indictments). They are definitely not wide. But they send a message to Trump and serve classic for color revolution de-legitimization purpose. In the context of the USA they probably do not actually need them to be wide as they can be amplified 100 or 1000 times by anti-Trump MSM.

See https://www.amazon.com/Power-Struggle-Politics-Nonviolent-Action/dp/087558070X/

In both cases there is a strong support within the intelligence agencies of the actions that can help to depose elected President (Brennan, Clapper, possibly Comey in case of the USA). Along with the goal to froze the possibility of détente with Russia. Which was achieved to the delight of all neocons.

There are also some discussions about the possibility that DNC hack was a false flag operation in classic color revolutions fashion. See

[Nov 11, 2017] Is Hillary Just the "Fall Guy" for the Intel Agencies and their Moneybags Bosses by Mike Whitney

See Wikipedia article CIA influence on public opinion . The role on Brennan probably deserves a special prosecutor and/or a Congressional commettee similar to Church Committee
The question arise: "Was hacking DNC another CIA false flag operation with the specific goal to poison US-Russian relations and using Hillary Clinton as a patsy?"
According fo church committee report: "Approximately 50 of the [Agency] assets are individual American journalists or employees of U.S. media organizations. Of these, fewer than half are "accredited" by U.S. media organizations ... The remaining individuals are non-accredited freelance contributors and media representatives abroad ... More than a dozen United States news organizations and commercial publishing houses formerly provided cover for CIA agents abroad. A few of these organizations were unaware that they provided this cover. [7] "
"Journalist Carl Bernstein , writing in an October 1977 article in the magazine Rolling Stone , claims that the Church Committee report "covered up" CIA relations with news media, and names a number of journalists whom he says worked with the CIA [10] Like the Church Committee report, however, Bernstein does not refer to any Operation Mockingbird."
Notable quotes:
"... "Russian meddling" became the perfect rallying cry for the CIA's broader information operation (IO) that was designed to poison public opinion against "Russian aggression" and to reign in Trump's plans to normalize relations with Moscow. ..."
"... Clinton became the "fall guy" in a darker, deep-state propaganda campaign for which she is only partially responsible. ..."
"... the Steele dossier was shared with the FBI at some point in the summer of 2016 and apparently became the basis for the FBI to seek Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants against members of Trump's campaign. ..."
"... More alarmingly, it may have formed the basis for much of the Jan. 6 intelligence "assessment" by those "hand-picked" analysts from three U.S. intelligence agencies -- the CIA, the FBI and the NSA -- not all 17 agencies that Hillary Clinton continues to insist were involved ..."
"... The article proves that the nation's premier law enforcement agency was using parts of a discredited "raw intelligence" report that was paid for by the DNC and was clearly commissioned as a part of a smear campaign -- to spy on members of the opposition party. Clearly, one could easily make the case that the FBI was abusing its extraordinary police-state powers to subvert the democratic process. ..."
"... The FBI, under James Comey, also attempted to use agent Steele for future research but abandoned the idea after parts of the dossier began to surface in the media making it politically impossible to maintain the relationship. ..."
"... The fact that the FBI was willing to build its investigation on the sensational and unverified claims in the DNC-bought-and-paid-for dossier, suggests that the real motive was not to reveal collusion between Trump and Moscow or even to uncover evidence related to the hacking claims. The real goal was to vilify Russia and derail Trump's efforts at détente. ..."
"... Steele's July report helped to prop up the threadbare "hacking" storyline that was further reinforced by the dubious cyber-forensic analysis of DNC servers performed by CrowdStrike, "a private company co-founded by a virulently anti-Putin Russian." ..."
"... Russia-gate is entirely a Democratic Party invention. Both sources of information (Crowdstrike and Steele) were chosen by members of the Democratic hierarchy (through their intermediaries) to create stories that coincided with their political objectives. Due to the obvious bias of the people who funded the operations, neither the methods nor the information can be trusted. But that's just part of the story. The bigger story relates to the role played by the nation's premier intelligence and law enforcement agencies. And that's where we see signs of institutional corruption on a truly colossal scale. ..."
"... Nov. 18: Arizona Sen. John McCain and a former assistant, David Kramer, are told about the existence of the dossier by an associate of Steele's, former British diplomat Sir Andrew Wood. Kramer travels to London later that month to meet with Steele and find out more about the dossier. Steele forwards a copy of the dossier to Fusion, Kramer and McCain. ..."
"... This is a damning admission that the Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) that was released on January 6, and was supposed to provide rock-solid proof of Russia hacking and collusion, was built (at least, in part) on the thin gruel and specious allegations found in the sketchy "Trump dossier". Former CIA Director John Brennan has refuted this claim, but there's significant circumstantial evidence to suggest that it is true. ..."
"... On December 9, 2016, The Washington Post reported that the CIA determined that Russian hacking was conducted to boost Trump and hurt Clinton during the presidential campaign. This same theory that was propounded in the ICA report just a month later. It appears that Brennan and his "hand-picked" intelligence analysts decided to carefully comb the dossier cherry-picking the most credible allegations to weave into their dubious intelligence Assessment. So even though large sections of the dossier were scrapped, the report itself was used as the foundation for the ICA. ..."
"... It's clear that Brennan had no "information or intelligence" that would lead a reasonable man to think that anyone in Trump's entourage was colluding with Russian officials or agents. The whole story is spun from whole cloth. The disturbing implication however is that Brennan, who was an outspoken supporter of Hillary and equally harsh critic of Trump, was using the CIA's intrusive surveillance powers to spy on a rival political party in the heat of a presidential campaign. If that is not a flagrant example of subverting democracy, then what is? ..."
"... It all started with Brennan, he's the ringleader in this dodgy caper. But Brennan was not operating as a free agent pursuing his own malign political agenda, but as a strong-arm facilitator for the powerful foreign policy establishment which includes leaders from Big Oil, Wall Street, and the giant weapons manufacturers. These are the corporate mandarins who pull Brennan's chain and give Brennan his marching orders. This is how power trickles down in America. ..."
"... So while the moneytrail may lead back to the DNC and Hillary's Campaign, the roots of Russia-gate extend far beyond the politicians to the highest-ranking members of the permanent state. ..."
Nov 11, 2017 | www.unz.com

For nearly a year, Hillary Clinton failed to admit that her campaign and the Democratic National Committee had provided funding for the notorious dossier that alleged Trump colluded with Russia to win the 2016 presidential election. Then, two weeks ago, the Washington Post published a blockbuster article that proved that Clinton had been misleading the public about her Campaign's role in producing the report.

Following the article's publication, Clinton went into hiding for more than a week during which time she huddled with her political advisors to settle on a strategy for dealing with the crisis.

"Russian meddling" became the perfect rallying cry for the CIA's broader information operation (IO) that was designed to poison public opinion against "Russian aggression" and to reign in Trump's plans to normalize relations with Moscow.

The fact that the CIA had essentially extracted a credible narrative from sections of the notorious dossier, left Hillary with no other option except to play-along even after the votes had been counted. As a result, Clinton became the "fall guy" in a darker, deep-state propaganda campaign for which she is only partially responsible. Here's a little background from Joe Lauria's "must read" article "The Democratic Money Behind Russia-gate":

" the Steele dossier was shared with the FBI at some point in the summer of 2016 and apparently became the basis for the FBI to seek Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants against members of Trump's campaign.

More alarmingly, it may have formed the basis for much of the Jan. 6 intelligence "assessment" by those "hand-picked" analysts from three U.S. intelligence agencies -- the CIA, the FBI and the NSA -- not all 17 agencies that Hillary Clinton continues to insist were involved .

If in fact the Steele memos were a primary basis for the Russia collusion allegations against Trump, then there may be no credible evidence at all." (Consortium News)

So, were "the Steele memos the primary basis for the Russia collusion allegations against Trump"? This is the pivotal question that still remains largely unanswered. As Lauria notes, the FBI did in fact use the "salacious and unverified" dossier to obtain at least one FISA warrant. This is from The Hill:

"The FBI used the dossier alleging Russian ties to President Trump's campaign associates to help convince a judge to grant a warrant to secretly monitor former campaign aide Carter Page, CNN reports.

FBI Director James Comey has cited the dossier in some of his briefings with lawmakers in recent weeks as one of the information sources used by his bureau to bolster its probe, U.S. officials briefed on the investigation told CNN." ("FBI used Trump dossier to help get warrant to monitor ex-aide: report", The Hill)

The article proves that the nation's premier law enforcement agency was using parts of a discredited "raw intelligence" report that was paid for by the DNC and was clearly commissioned as a part of a smear campaign -- to spy on members of the opposition party. Clearly, one could easily make the case that the FBI was abusing its extraordinary police-state powers to subvert the democratic process.

The FBI, under James Comey, also attempted to use agent Steele for future research but abandoned the idea after parts of the dossier began to surface in the media making it politically impossible to maintain the relationship. This is from a February article in the Washington Post:

"The former British spy who authored a controversial dossier on behalf of Donald Trump's political opponents alleging ties between Trump and Russia reached an agreement with the FBI a few weeks before the election for the bureau to pay him to continue his work, according to several people familiar with the arrangement. The agreement to compensate former MI6 agent Christopher Steele came as U.S. intelligence agencies reached a consensus that the Russians had interfered in the presidential election by orchestrating hacks of Democratic Party email accounts ..

Ultimately, the FBI did not pay Steele. Communications between the bureau and the former spy were interrupted as Steele's now-famous dossier became the subject of news stories, congressional inquiries and presidential denials, according to the people familiar with the arrangement, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter." ("FBI once planned to pay former British spy who authored controversial Trump dossier", Washington Post)

The fact that the FBI was willing to build its investigation on the sensational and unverified claims in the DNC-bought-and-paid-for dossier, suggests that the real motive was not to reveal collusion between Trump and Moscow or even to uncover evidence related to the hacking claims. The real goal was to vilify Russia and derail Trump's efforts at détente.

It's also worth noting , that Steele's earliest report implausibly alleges that the "Russian authorities had been cultivating and supporting US presidential candidate Trump for at least 5 years." (No one had any idea that Trump would run for president 5 years ago.) The report also details perverted sexual acts involving Trump and urinating prostitutes in a hotel in Moscow. (All fake, of course) The point we are trying to make, is that Steele's first report focused on corruption, perversion and blackmail, whereas, his second installment completely changed direction to cyber-espionage operations on foreign targets.

Why?

It was because, on July 22, 2016, just days before the Democratic National Convention, WikiLeaks published 20,000 emails hacked from DNC computers revealing the corrupt inner-workings of the Democratic establishment. In response, Steele decided to craft a story that would support the Dems plan to blame the Russians for the moral cesspit they-alone had created. In other words, his report was a way of "passing the buck".

Steele's July report helped to prop up the threadbare "hacking" storyline that was further reinforced by the dubious cyber-forensic analysis of DNC servers performed by CrowdStrike, "a private company co-founded by a virulently anti-Putin Russian."

The hacking theme was also aided by the deluge of unsourced, evidence-lite articles cropping up in the media, like this gem in the Washington Post:

"Russian government hackers penetrated the computer network of the Democratic National Committee and gained access to the entire database of opposition research on GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, according to committee officials and security experts who responded to the breach.

The intruders so thoroughly compromised the DNC's system that they also were able to read all email and chat traffic, said DNC officials and the security experts.

The intrusion into the DNC was one of several targeting American political organizations. The networks of presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were also targeted by Russian spies " ("Russian government hackers penetrated DNC, stole opposition research on Trump", Washington Post)

What's remarkable about the above excerpt is that it follows the same basic approach to propaganda as nearly all the other pieces on the topic. Unlike the lead-up to the Iraq War, where journalists at the New York Times made every effort to create a believable storyline that included references to aluminum tubes, Niger uranium, mobile weapons labs, etc. The media no longer tries to support their narrative with evidence or eyewitnesses. The major media now simply tells people what they want them to think and leave it at that. Even so, it doesn't require much critical thinking to see the holes in the Russia hacking story. One merely needs to suspend judgment long enough to see that main claims all emerge from (Democratic) sources who have every reason to mislead the public. Here's an excerpt from Joe Lauria's article that sums it up perfectly:

"The two sources that originated the allegations claiming that Russia meddled in the 2016 election were both paid for by the Democratic National Committee, and in one instance also by the Clinton campaign: the Steele dossier and the CrowdStrike analysis of the DNC servers.

Think about that for a minute .

In other words, possibly all of the Russia-gate allegations, which have been taken on faith by Democratic partisans and members of the anti-Trump Resistance, trace back to claims paid for or generated by Democrats.

If for a moment one could remove the sometimes justified hatred that many people feel toward Trump, it would be impossible to avoid the impression that the scandal may have been cooked up by the DNC and the Clinton camp in league with Obama's intelligence chiefs to serve political and geopolitical aims." ("The Democratic Money Behind Russia-gate", Consortium News)

Russia-gate is entirely a Democratic Party invention. Both sources of information (Crowdstrike and Steele) were chosen by members of the Democratic hierarchy (through their intermediaries) to create stories that coincided with their political objectives. Due to the obvious bias of the people who funded the operations, neither the methods nor the information can be trusted. But that's just part of the story. The bigger story relates to the role played by the nation's premier intelligence and law enforcement agencies. And that's where we see signs of institutional corruption on a truly colossal scale.

As we noted earlier, the Clinton smear campaign would probably have ended after the votes were counted had not the intel agencies, particularly the CIA, decided the hacking story could be used to inflict more damage on Russia. It wasn't Clinton's decision to gather more information for the dossier, but others whose motives have remained largely concealed. Who are they?

According to a timeline in the Daily Caller:

November: The contract between the Democrats, Fusion and Steele ends along with the presidential campaign.

Nov. 18: Arizona Sen. John McCain and a former assistant, David Kramer, are told about the existence of the dossier by an associate of Steele's, former British diplomat Sir Andrew Wood. Kramer travels to London later that month to meet with Steele and find out more about the dossier. Steele forwards a copy of the dossier to Fusion, Kramer and McCain.

Dec. 9: McCain provides a copy of the dossier to then-FBI Director James Comey during a meeting at the latter's office.

Dec. 13: Steele writes the final memo of the dossier. It alleges that a Russian tech executive used his companies to hack into the DNC's email systems. The executive, Aleksej Gubarev, denied the allegations after the dossier was published by BuzzFeed on Jan. 10, 2017. He is suing both BuzzFeed and Steele.

Jan. 6: Comey and other intelligence community officials brief then-President-elect Trump on some of the allegations made in the dossier.

Jan. 10: CNN reports that the briefing of Trump took place four days earlier. Citing that reporting as justification, BuzzFeed publishes the dossier. (The Daily Mail)

John McCain? Is that who we're talking about? Was it McCain who paid former M16 agent Christopher Steele to add another report to the dossier? Why?

Is it that hard to imagine that a Russophobic foreign policy wonk like McCain -- who has expressed his vehement hatred for Vladimir Putin on the floor of the senate -- would hire a mud-slinging free agent like Steele to craft a story that would further demonize Russia, discourage Trump from normalizing relations with Moscow, and reinforce the theory that the Kremlin meddled in the 2016 elections?

Does that mean that McCain may have told Steele (or his intermediaries) precisely what he wanted the final draft to say? It certainly seems probable. And here's something else to mull over. This is from the Business Insider:

Steele gave the dossier to Republican Sen. John McCain. McCain then gave it to the FBI director at the time, James Comey. Comey, along with the former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan, briefed both President Barack Obama and then-President elect Trump on the dossier's allegations in January.

Intelligence officials purposefully omitted the dossier from the public intelligence report they released in January about Russia's election interference because they didn't want to reveal which details they had corroborated, according to CNN." ("Mueller reportedly interviewed the author of the Trump-Russia dossier -- here's what it alleges, and how it aligned with reality", Business Insider)

This is a damning admission that the Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) that was released on January 6, and was supposed to provide rock-solid proof of Russia hacking and collusion, was built (at least, in part) on the thin gruel and specious allegations found in the sketchy "Trump dossier". Former CIA Director John Brennan has refuted this claim, but there's significant circumstantial evidence to suggest that it is true.

On December 9, 2016, The Washington Post reported that the CIA determined that Russian hacking was conducted to boost Trump and hurt Clinton during the presidential campaign. This same theory that was propounded in the ICA report just a month later. It appears that Brennan and his "hand-picked" intelligence analysts decided to carefully comb the dossier cherry-picking the most credible allegations to weave into their dubious intelligence Assessment. So even though large sections of the dossier were scrapped, the report itself was used as the foundation for the ICA.

Brennan spearheaded the anti-Russia campaign from the get-go. As early as August 2016, Brennan was providing classified briefings to ranking members of Congress expressing his conviction that Moscow was helping Trump to win the election. The former Director offered no proof to back up his claims nor has he since then. It was also Brennan who gradually persuaded Clapper, Comey and Morrell to join his anti-Russia jihad, although all were reluctant participants at first. Were they won over by compelling secret evidence that has been been withheld from the public?

Not likely. It's more probable that Brennan was merely able to convince them that the powerful foreign policy establishment required their cooperation on an issue that would have grave impact on Washington's imperial plan for Syria, Ukraine, Central Asia and beyond?

Some readers might remember when Brennan testified before Congress way-back on May 23 and boldly stated:

BRENNAN: "I encountered and am aware of information and intelligence that revealed contacts and interactions between Russian officials and U.S. persons involved in the Trump campaign that I was concerned about because of known Russian efforts to suborn such individuals and it raised questions in my mind, again, whether or not the Russians were able to gain the cooperation of those individuals."

It's clear that Brennan had no "information or intelligence" that would lead a reasonable man to think that anyone in Trump's entourage was colluding with Russian officials or agents. The whole story is spun from whole cloth. The disturbing implication however is that Brennan, who was an outspoken supporter of Hillary and equally harsh critic of Trump, was using the CIA's intrusive surveillance powers to spy on a rival political party in the heat of a presidential campaign. If that is not a flagrant example of subverting democracy, then what is? Here's a clip from the Washington Times:

"It was then-CIA Director John O. Brennan, a close confidant of Mr. Obama's, who provided the information -- what he termed the "basis" -- for the FBI to start the counterintelligence investigation last summer .Mr. Brennan told the House Intelligence Committee on May 23 that the intelligence community was picking up tidbits on Trump associates making contacts with Russians

But he said he believed the contacts were numerous enough to alert the FBI, which began its probe into Trump associates that same July, according to previous congressional testimony from then-FBI director James B. Comey." (The Washington Times)

It all started with Brennan, he's the ringleader in this dodgy caper. But Brennan was not operating as a free agent pursuing his own malign political agenda, but as a strong-arm facilitator for the powerful foreign policy establishment which includes leaders from Big Oil, Wall Street, and the giant weapons manufacturers. These are the corporate mandarins who pull Brennan's chain and give Brennan his marching orders. This is how power trickles down in America.

So while the moneytrail may lead back to the DNC and Hillary's Campaign, the roots of Russia-gate extend far beyond the politicians to the highest-ranking members of the permanent state.

[Nov 10, 2017] We don't use private lawyers to cooperate with US -- Russian Prosecutor General's Office to RT

Nov 10, 2017 | www.rt.com

The Russian Prosecutor General's Office has explained to RT how an "efficient mechanism" of information sharing with the US works.

No private lawyers are involved in the process, the agency official said, denying allegations that it has played a part in any meeting between Donald Trump Jr. with lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya.

[Nov 08, 2017] More 'Fake News,' Alas, From the New York Times The American Conservative by Andrew J. Bacevich

Notable quotes:
"... Third, Manafort's efforts mattered bigly. In 2010, he helped Victor F. Yanukovych become president of Ukraine. An unquestionably nasty piece of work, Yanukovych was, according to Farkas, "Putin's man in Kiev." Yet like it or not, he came to power as the result of democratic election. In 2013, Yanukovych opted against joining the EU, which along with NATO, had, in Farkas's words, "experienced a burst of membership expansion" right up to Russia's own borders. ..."
"... In response to Yanukovych's action, "the Ukrainian people," that is, the enlightened ones, "took to the streets," forcing him to flee the country. Rather than bowing to the expressed will of the people, however, Russia's Vladimir Putin "instigated a separatist movement" in eastern Ukraine, thereby triggering "a war between Russia and Ukraine that continues to this day." ..."
"... To accept Farkas's account as truthful, one would necessarily conclude that as Manafort was hijacking history, the United States remained quietly on the sidelines, an innocent bystander sending prayers heavenward in hopes that freedom and democracy might everywhere prevail ..."
"... Furthermore, Russia was not alone in its meddling. The United States has been equally guilty. When "the Ukrainian people took to the streets," as Farkas puts it, the State Department and CIA were behind the scenes vigorously pulling strings. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland believed it was incumbent upon the United States to decide who should govern Ukraine. ("Yats is the guy," she said on a leaked call). Nuland would brook no interference from allies slow to follow Washington's lead. ("F–k the EU," she told the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine.) ..."
"... That Ukraine is, as Farkas correctly states, a torn country, did not give Nuland pause. Since the end of the Cold War, U.S. policymakers have assigned to themselves a magical ability to repair such tears and to make broken countries whole. The results of their labors are amply on display everywhere from Somalia and Haiti to Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. Now add Ukraine to that sorry list. ..."
"... Even so, can't we at least assume Nuland's motives were morally superior to Putin's? After all, President Putin is clearly a thug whereas Nuland is an estimable product of the American foreign policy establishment. She's married to Robert Kagan, for heaven's sake. ..."
"... This is why we should disband politically oriented NGO's. In essence, a country is only a democracy if it is pro-U.S. Resistance is futile. Meddling at this level will only bring about more conflict, instability and military obligations will follow. It is good to be king but it is also quite expensive and ultimately ruinous. ..."
"... Imperialism rules other peoples against their will, necessitating for its survival the lessening of democratic accountability at home, too, since it lessens the importance of citizens' own concerns, also requiring for its warmaking security keeping voters in the dark. ..."
"... Make that, More 'Fake News,' Of Course From the New York Times. Saturated with Fake News of various manifestations, the NY Times and its rancid analog Washington Post on the other end of the Crony-Elite NY-DC axis are unreadable. ..."
"... Given a ham-fisted EU run by Elite hacks in Brussels that is white washing Europe's Christian legacy, mandating overbearing economic and social controls and absorbing millions of net negative migrants, the Czechs, Poles, Hungarians and Balts seem to be having second thoughts. BTW, The Russians will not and do not want to invade those countries. As the EU spins out of control and the One Belt One Road initiative develops, Russia only needs to ask them what direction they want to face in the future. ..."
"... So, having said that, on foreign policy they, all newspapers and the vast majority of magazines, are war-peddling neo-con supporters. ..."
"... Do not buy any major newspaper. Let them wither away and, it wasn't fake spun 'news' we have been getting only this year: fake agenda driven bull has been going on for decades. Go to the internet and overseas for news think what I said over and you will see ..."
"... All this social, economic and political mess is the result of deregulation in the economic, social, political spheres. The effects of those deregulations are now quite obvious in: economy, society, morality and politics that are already corrupted to the core, but the corruption is not stopping there, it is consuming everything else on its way. There is no end to it, and what is even more surprising is that people want even more of all kinds of deregulations etc. ..."
"... Wouldn't it be more logical to bring back responsibility, moral standards and decency to politics, society and economy etc? What I now see in media is the total lack of any ideas on how to correct the obvious, but instead everybody is spinning his/her lies to make them more believable to the yet unconverted. This is pure relativism and sophistry and it destroys not only the USA, but the West as well. ..."
"... If an opinion piece in NYT or other MSM blatantly distorts the facts, then it belongs to the category of "fake news." Which should probably be called "malicious rumors." So the defense of some commenters that you can blatantly lie in opinion pieces (the right NYT exercised to the full extent in this particular example and for which Bacevich criticized them) is wrong. Anti-Russian witch hunt in NYT and other MSM destroys the credibility of the USA version of neoliberalism as well as the USA foreign policy. Along with Trump election, I view it as a symptom of the crisis of neoliberalism for which the US elite is unable to find a more suitable answer than scapegoating. Also the fact that Nuland is married to neocon warmonger Kagan is a material fact. ..."
Nov 08, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Disregarding President Trump's insistent claim that the establishment press propagates "fake news" requires a constant effort -- especially when a prestigious outlet like the New York Times allows itself to be used for blatantly fraudulent purposes.

I cherish the First Amendment. Mark me down as favoring journalism that is loud, lively, and confrontational. When members of the media snooze -- falling for fictitious claims about Saddam's WMD program or Gaddafi's genocidal intentions, for example -- we all lose.

So the recent decision by Times editors to publish an op-ed regarding Paul Manafort's involvement in Ukraine is disturbing. That the Times is keen to bring down Donald Trump is no doubt the case. Yet if efforts to do so entail grotesque distortions of U.S. policy before Trump, then we are courting real trouble. Put simply, ousting Trump should not come at the cost of whitewashing the follies that contributed to Trump's rise in the first place.

The offending Times op-ed, the handiwork of Evelyn N. Farkas, appears under the title "With Manafort, It Really Is About Russia, Not Ukraine." During the Obama administration, Farkas served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia, Ukraine, Eurasia, and Mess Kit Repair. Okay, I added that last bit, but it does seem like quite an expansive charter for a mere deputy assistant secretary.

The story Farkas tells goes like this.

First, from the moment it achieved independence in 1991, Ukraine was a divided nation, "torn between Western Europe and Russia." Ukrainians in the country's western precincts wanted to join the European Union and NATO. Those further to east "oriented themselves toward Russia, which exerted maximum influence to keep Ukraine closely aligned." In one camp were enlightened Ukrainians. In the other camp, the unenlightened.

Second, Manafort's involvement in this intra-Ukrainian dispute was -- shockingly -- never about "advanc[ing] the interests of democracy, Western Europe or the United States." Manafort's motives were strictly venal. In what Farkas describes as a "standoff between democracy and autocracy," he threw in with the autocrats, thereby raking in millions.

Third, Manafort's efforts mattered bigly. In 2010, he helped Victor F. Yanukovych become president of Ukraine. An unquestionably nasty piece of work, Yanukovych was, according to Farkas, "Putin's man in Kiev." Yet like it or not, he came to power as the result of democratic election. In 2013, Yanukovych opted against joining the EU, which along with NATO, had, in Farkas's words, "experienced a burst of membership expansion" right up to Russia's own borders.

In response to Yanukovych's action, "the Ukrainian people," that is, the enlightened ones, "took to the streets," forcing him to flee the country. Rather than bowing to the expressed will of the people, however, Russia's Vladimir Putin "instigated a separatist movement" in eastern Ukraine, thereby triggering "a war between Russia and Ukraine that continues to this day."

To accept Farkas's account as truthful, one would necessarily conclude that as Manafort was hijacking history, the United States remained quietly on the sidelines, an innocent bystander sending prayers heavenward in hopes that freedom and democracy might everywhere prevail .

Such was hardly the case, however. One need not be a Putin apologist to note that the United States was itself engaged in a program of instigation, one that ultimately induced a hostile -- but arguably defensive -- Russian response.

In the wake of the Cold War, the EU and NATO did not experience a "burst" of expansion, a formulation suggesting joyous spontaneity. Rather, with Washington's enthusiastic support, the West embarked upon a deliberate eastward march at the Kremlin's expense, an undertaking made possible by (and intended to exploit) Russia's weakened state. In football, it's called piling on.

That this project worked to the benefit of Czechs, Poles, Hungarians, the Baltic Republics, and others is very much the case. On that score, it is to be applauded.

That at some point a resentful Russia would push back was all but certain. Indeed, more than a few Western observers had warned against such a response.

The proposed incorporation of Ukraine into NATO brought matters to a head. For Putin, this was an unacceptable prospect. He acted as would any U.S. president contemplating the absorption of a near neighbor into hostile bloc of nations. Indeed, he acted much as had Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy when they assessed the implications of Cuba joining the Soviet bloc.

That doesn't justify or excuse Putin's meddling in Ukraine. Yet it suggests an explanation for Russian behavior other than the bitterness of an ex-KGB colonel still with his shorts in a knot over losing the Cold War. Russia has an obvious and compelling interest in who controls Ukraine, even if few in Washington or in the editorial offices of the New York Times will acknowledge that reality.

Furthermore, Russia was not alone in its meddling. The United States has been equally guilty. When "the Ukrainian people took to the streets," as Farkas puts it, the State Department and CIA were behind the scenes vigorously pulling strings. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland believed it was incumbent upon the United States to decide who should govern Ukraine. ("Yats is the guy," she said on a leaked call). Nuland would brook no interference from allies slow to follow Washington's lead. ("F–k the EU," she told the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine.)

That Ukraine is, as Farkas correctly states, a torn country, did not give Nuland pause. Since the end of the Cold War, U.S. policymakers have assigned to themselves a magical ability to repair such tears and to make broken countries whole. The results of their labors are amply on display everywhere from Somalia and Haiti to Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. Now add Ukraine to that sorry list.

Even so, can't we at least assume Nuland's motives were morally superior to Putin's? After all, President Putin is clearly a thug whereas Nuland is an estimable product of the American foreign policy establishment. She's married to Robert Kagan, for heaven's sake.

Persuade yourself that the United States is all about democracy promotion, as Farkas appears to believe, and the answer to that question is clearly yes. Alas, the record of American statecraft stretching over decades provides an abundance of contrary evidence. In practice, the United States supports democracy only when it finds it convenient to do so. Should circumstances require, it unhesitatingly befriends despots, especially rich ones that pay cash while purchasing American weaponry.

Yanukovych was Putin's man, "and therefore, indirectly, so was Mr. Manafort," Farkas concludes. All that now remains is to determine "the extent to which Mr. Manafort was Putin's man in Washington." For Farkas, the self-evident answer to that question cannot come too soon.

As to whether Russia -- or any other great power -- might have legitimate security interests that the United States would do well to respect, that's not a matter worth bothering about. Thus does the imperative of ousting Trump eclipse the need to confront the pretensions and the hubris that helped make Trump possible.

Andrew Bacevich is writer-at-large at The American Conservative

John Fargo , says: November 7, 2017 at 11:17 pm

This is why the term "fake news" is so harmful and should not be used by media outlets. The use of "bad journalism" would be much more useful as it forces the claimants to justify their reasons for doing so.
"Fake news" is just a dog whistle.
William Dalton , says: November 8, 2017 at 12:02 am
Has it not occurred to the foreign policy establishment in Washington that it is more in America's national interests for Ukraine to remain in Moscow's orbit, so as to strengthen U.S.-Russian relations, not exacerbate tensions, rather than to pull them into the EU, or, God forbid, NATO? Isn't this what any of the seasoned experts at Foggy Bottom would tell you? Why aren't they doing so?
Tiktaalik , says: November 8, 2017 at 2:49 am
Two comments in order

1) Yanukovich won in 2004 as well and the election results were hijacked by 'Maidan'

2) Yanukovich wasn't Putin man back in 2010. As a matter of fact, he and his party actively promoted EU integration deal, until they read its actual conditions. After that they backtracked and rushed to Putin for a support.

So it was classical case of sitting on two chairs simultaneously.

JonB , says: November 8, 2017 at 5:39 am
Completely agree with John Fargo. "Fake News" should be reserved for deliberate falsehoods published knowingly. This NYT op-ed amounts to "an interpretation of history Bacevich doesn't agree with." I may not agree with it either – but it's not like claiming that the Vegas shooter was anti-Trump, or creating a Facebook account for a non-existent person or organization.
Nolan , says: November 8, 2017 at 6:42 am
Mr Fargo: Disagree. "Bad journalism" implies the author is lazy yet innocent in their way. "Fake news" is more about narrative control and manipulation of the reader through reinvention or exaggeration, et cetera. Calling articles and outlets fake news is more accurate and levies much more weight against the lies and deceit than simply accusing someone or thing of bad journalism.
Christian Chuba , says: November 8, 2017 at 6:54 am
This is why we should disband politically oriented NGO's. In essence, a country is only a democracy if it is pro-U.S. Resistance is futile. Meddling at this level will only bring about more conflict, instability and military obligations will follow. It is good to be king but it is also quite expensive and ultimately ruinous.
Fran Macadam , says: November 8, 2017 at 7:30 am
If it were all about democracy promotion, they wouldn't also be so anxious to negate an election here at home. Imperialism rules other peoples against their will, necessitating for its survival the lessening of democratic accountability at home, too, since it lessens the importance of citizens' own concerns, also requiring for its warmaking security keeping voters in the dark.
SteveM , says: November 8, 2017 at 7:36 am
Re: "More 'Fake News,' Alas, From the New York Times"

Make that, More 'Fake News,' Of Course From the New York Times. Saturated with Fake News of various manifestations, the NY Times and its rancid analog Washington Post on the other end of the Crony-Elite NY-DC axis are unreadable.

Re: "That this project worked to the benefit of Czechs, Poles, Hungarians, the Baltic Republics, and others is very much the case. On that score, it is to be applauded."

Given a ham-fisted EU run by Elite hacks in Brussels that is white washing Europe's Christian legacy, mandating overbearing economic and social controls and absorbing millions of net negative migrants, the Czechs, Poles, Hungarians and Balts seem to be having second thoughts. BTW, The Russians will not and do not want to invade those countries. As the EU spins out of control and the One Belt One Road initiative develops, Russia only needs to ask them what direction they want to face in the future.

Dee , says: November 8, 2017 at 8:08 am
How is it someone's "opinion" constitutes "fake News"? Trump did not win by policy issues, he rode the right-wing outrage at all things clinton/libtard better than anyone else. His policy positions were mostly promise everything to everyone, but his campaign was about Lock her up/ build the wall! After bashing Goldman Sachs during the election, once he won he promptly filled his cabinet with them and other mega donor types.
Mario Diana , says: November 8, 2017 at 9:30 am
@John Fargo – I'm in almost complete sympathy with Mr. Bacevich's essay, but you make an excellent point. "Bad journalism" is the better term. In fact, the only criticism I can make of your statement is that "dog whistle" is the wrong term. Everyone associates the term "fake news" with Donald Trump. (If it were possible, he no doubt would have trademarked it.) Using the term alienates the very people who need to hear criticisms like those in Mr. Bacevich's essay. They hear it, too; and upon hearing it, they stop listening.
Egypt Steve , says: November 8, 2017 at 11:34 am
Look, elite and non-elite self-delusion about the purity of U.S. motives abroad dates back to the Roosevelt administration at least -- and I mean the Teddy Roosevelt administration. I don't see how any of this amounts to a defense of charges of money-laundering against Manafort.
Janek , says: November 8, 2017 at 11:37 am
I disagree with John Fargo. The news that NYT, Washington Post, and other media outlets (not only liberal ) "produce" is the "Fake News". "Bad journalism" should be reserved and used in the sense Nolan explains. Besides the "Fake News" on the so called "left" in American politics in general is the problem of "double speak" and speaking with the "forked tongues". American "right" is the camp of the white flag.
Tom , says: November 8, 2017 at 12:20 pm
The op-ed page is for opinion pieces of writing and that is what this was an opinion. It isn't fake news because it isn't news.
SteveM , says: November 8, 2017 at 12:43 pm
Re: Janek:

Besides the "Fake News" on the so called "left" in American politics in general is the problem of "double speak" and speaking with the "forked tongues". American "right" is the camp of the white flag.

I've mentioned the various "flavors" of Fake News before. There is (1) the obvious – what is claimed as true is actually false. But also (2), what is claimed as important, actually isn't. And (3) what is important, is weakly or not reported at all.

An example of Type 2 is the WaPost reporting on its front page before the 2016 that Jared Kushner may have been greased into the Harvard MBA program. As if Ivy League greasing by monied Elites is unheard of. How was that front page news? And how about the acceptances of Chelsea Clinton (Stanford) and Malia Obama (Harvard)?

The cases of Type 3 Fake News are much more egregious. For example, the reasoned arguments and analysis by retired American intelligence officers and academics that the Syrian forces "chemical weapon attack" in April was almost certainly a false flag with staged recovery activity.

The NY Times and WaPost have consistently refused to acknowledge that those arguments and analysis even exist.

The linking of Russia to the DNC email leaks as factual by the Times, Post and NPR without a scintilla of published hard evidence is another example.

There are many more examples of Type 3 Fake News that could be demonstrated. Much of what claims to be journalism by the MSM is now Fake News trash.

Siarlys Jenkins , says: November 8, 2017 at 1:09 pm
Disregarding President Trump's insistent claim that the establishment press propagates "fake news" requires a constant effort -- especially when a prestigious outlet like the New York Times allows itself to be used for blatantly fraudulent purposes.

I agree in principal, although I note that President Trump and his team are as guilty of fake news as anyone, and the president himself appears to be positively delusional. I might at times disagree with Bacevich as to which news is fake.

I would also agree that there has been a great deal of "fake news" out of Ukraine, and what is really going on their is a former SSR with a bitterly divided population that each has about equal numbers, proponderance in some territories compared to others, and equally opportunistic leadership showing no great commitment to anything recognizable as "democracy."

Fayez Abedaziz , says: November 8, 2017 at 3:22 pm
Say, can we refrain from using the word 'journalism' when we refer to the American media? We should.

The internet and sources overseas, such as the Independent News paper/site out of Britain, have news that is not purposely spun as is by the neo-con American news papers and magazines. Not as much, anyway. Several points here, for example of what bad news (pun intended) the joke of American media is:

1- quit calling the main stream media liberal or left. They are liberal in a 'social issues sense,' that is, to be politically correct.

2- So, having said that, on foreign policy they, all newspapers and the vast majority of magazines, are war-peddling neo-con supporters.

3-They have agendas. Do we not remember how they, at the new york times, peddled the war against Iraq and how, when you look at the editorial page you feel that these people and the guests opinion writers are soulless people that have no concern for America's 'flyover' country?

4- Yeah, isn't that ironic that these people look down on America's middle class, blue collar workers and yes, it's troops, by that constant bashing of nations here and there and pushing for aggressive stands or even military attacks? Let the people at the major newspapers like this n.y.times rag tell us when they served in the U.S. military or their when their offspring did or when they're gonna join and volunteer for combat duty. Never mind, I've got the answer-none of 'em.

Do not buy any major newspaper. Let them wither away and, it wasn't fake spun 'news' we have been getting only this year: fake agenda driven bull has been going on for decades. Go to the internet and overseas for news think what I said over and you will see

Janek , says: November 8, 2017 at 3:39 pm
@SteveM

Not everybody has the time to analyze the deluge of all the "Fake News" and categorize it into classes and/or sub-classes you or somebody else proposes. Where all that leads? Soon we will have new sociopolitical discipline and experts on "fake-newsology" that will introduce another layer of pseudo-information that will have to be translated to the uninitiated and unwashed.

All this social, economic and political mess is the result of deregulation in the economic, social, political spheres. The effects of those deregulations are now quite obvious in: economy, society, morality and politics that are already corrupted to the core, but the corruption is not stopping there, it is consuming everything else on its way. There is no end to it, and what is even more surprising is that people want even more of all kinds of deregulations etc.

Wouldn't it be more logical to bring back responsibility, moral standards and decency to politics, society and economy etc? What I now see in media is the total lack of any ideas on how to correct the obvious, but instead everybody is spinning his/her lies to make them more believable to the yet unconverted. This is pure relativism and sophistry and it destroys not only the USA, but the West as well.

nikbez

If an opinion piece in NYT or other MSM blatantly distorts the facts, then it belongs to the category of "fake news." Which should probably be called "malicious rumors."

So the defense of some commenters that you can blatantly lie in opinion pieces (the right NYT exercised to the full extent in this particular example and for which Bacevich criticized them) is wrong.

Anti-Russian witch hunt in NYT and other MSM destroys the credibility of the USA version of neoliberalism as well as the USA foreign policy. Along with Trump election, I view it as a symptom of the crisis of neoliberalism for which the US elite is unable to find a more suitable answer than scapegoating.

Also the fact that Nuland is married to neocon warmonger Kagan is a material fact.

[Nov 05, 2017] Trump, Papadopoulous and the Russia Connection by Daniel McCarthy

Nov 02, 2017 | nationalinterest.org
Evidence that goes far beyond Manafort's general shadiness will be needed to fulfill the dreams of those who imagine President Trump to be some sort of Manchurian Candidate.

The first charges to be filed in Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian involvement in last year's election fit a typical pattern: a federal prosecutor in a big political case goes after small fry and easy targets, slamming them for lying to investigators, even as evidence for the grand conspiracy he's meant to be investigating remains virtually nonexistent.

The easy target in this instance is Paul Manafort , who was briefly and rather unsuccessfully Donald Trump's campaign manager in the stretch between his sealing the nomination and the Republican convention. Manafort's extensive ties to disreputable foreign governments were already the subject of headlines over eighteen months ago. In April 2016, when Manafort was a "newly installed senior campaign adviser," the Guardian noted that his clients amounted to "a who's who of authoritarian leaders and scandal-plagued businessmen in Ukraine , Russia, the Philippines and more." The whiff of corruption that swirls around Manafort was already with him long before he hooked up with the Trump campaign. (Even so, it's highly unusual for a someone to be charged, as Manafort has been, with failing to register as a foreign agent: strict enforcement of the law would send a great many richly compensated D.C. operators to jail.)

Manafort would be the most brazen spy in the history of humanity if his purpose in the Trump campaign had been to coordinate with the Kremlin. We do live in extraordinary times, but evidence that goes far beyond Manafort's general shadiness will be needed to fulfill the dreams of those who imagine President Trump to be some sort of Manchurian Candidate. Hiring Manafort was certainly reckless on the part of the Trump campaign, and in a normal political season that would have been scandal enough. But neither Manafort's obvious vices nor his questionable competence (the GOP convention came close to succumbing to revolt) proved to be enough to derail Trump's locomotive to the White House.

The indictments against Manafort and his associate Rick Gates are fodder for partisan sensationalism, but they do not appear to pose great peril to Trump. Pundits who looked more closely at Mueller's first moves were more intrigued, however, by what they saw in the case of the small fry: that is, the case of George Papadopoulous, a low-level foreign-policy adviser to Trump's campaign. According to documents that Mueller had made public, Papadopoulous has already pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his conversations with a certain "professor" who claimed to have access through Russian sources to "dirt" on Hillary Clinton. (The professor has been identified in the press as the Maltese academic Josef Mifsud, based in Scotland at the University of Sterling.)

Papadopoulos, just twenty-eight years old at the time, came to the Trump campaign after a stint as an adviser to the Ben Carson campaign during the early contests last year. Trump was in desperate need of staff -- indeed, people close to the campaign told me even months later, in July 2016, that it was barely an organized campaign at all -- so Papadopoulos was taken on and soon named among the campaign's foreign-policy advisers by Trump himself in a March 2016 interview with the Washington Post . Papadopoulos appeared in photos next to important campaign figures such as Jeff Sessions, and he could have been an influential part of the campaign himself. But he probably wasn't: the fact that he might appear in a photo with Jeff Sessions says at least as much about the then Alabama senator's standing as it does about Papadopoulos. The campaign was not a conventional campaign, and it had only the most shambolic organizational chart.

Did Mifsud in fact have "dirt" on Hillary Clinton, in the form of pilfered emails obtained by the Russians? This was the impression he apparently gave Papadopoulos, who passed the tale to more senior campaign staff and was given permission to continue his contacts with Mifsud. There was nothing illegal about this: what Papadopoulos has been charged with is not looking into whether a Maltese academic and his Russian friends -- in particular a young woman introduced to Papadopoulos as "Putin's niece" -- had Clinton or DNC email; rather, he has been charged with lying to investigators. Watergate lore would have it that "it's not the crime, it's the coverup" that brings down high officials implicated in wrongdoing. But in fact, federal prosecutors and investigators routinely pounce on misstatements and minor falsehoods to make cases that otherwise would go nowhere. That's standard operating procedure for special counsels and special prosecutors. Going after the small fry and hitting them with harsh charges for misstatements that may not otherwise seem terribly serious serves at least two purposes. Yes, such charges put pressure on what may be the weakest links in a chain leading to proof of corruption in high office. But they also keep a fishing expedition going by suggesting that if you can catch a few minnows, maybe you can land Moby-Dick, too. Prosecutors are unavoidably political figures, and high-stakes investigations of public officials, above all the president, inevitably have the character of PR campaigns as much as legal proceedings.

Everything we know so far suggests not a passionate love affair between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin but a series of awkward first dates between amateurs whose espionage credentials would make Boris and Natasha look like James Jesus Angleton. The Russians did not lack for motive to screw with America's election and to vex Hillary Clinton in particular. But nothing indicates that they had effective lines of communication (let alone control) into the upper echelons of the Trump campaign, to the extent that the Trump campaign was even organized enough to have echelons. There's something paradoxical in the same pundits who bemoan Donald Trump's absolute unpredictability and incorrigibility as president also believing that the Trump campaign and the Kremlin could work together smoothly to subvert American democracy. The Trump campaign couldn't even work together smoothly with itself, which is one thing Paul Manafort can prove. Daniel McCarthy is editor at large of The American Conservative

[Nov 04, 2017] 13 Shocking Facts About Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller by George Washington

Mueller is the member of ruling neoliberal elite... That's for sure.
Nov 02, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
Talking heads act like Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller is fair, impartial and unbiased. But the facts are a wee bit different ... Failure to Aggressively Prosecute the BCCI Scandal

The BBC noted :

[Mueller] is also known for leading the probe into the 1991 collapse of the Luxembourg-registered Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI).

Williams Safire wrote in the New York Times:

The B.C.C.I. scandal involves the laundering of drug money, the illicit financing of terrorism and of arms to Iraq, the easy purchase of respectability and the corruption of the world banking system.

For more than a decade, the biggest banking swindle in history worked beautifully. Between $5 billion and $15 billion was bilked from governments and individual depositors to be put to the most evil of purposes -- while lawmen and regulators slept.

Now the fight among investigators is coming out into the open. Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau, who gave impetus to long-contained probes, told a Senate subcommittee headed by Senator John Kerry that he is getting no cooperation from the Thornburgh Justice Department.

Justice's Criminal Division chief, Robert Mueller, tells me he will have a hatchet-burying session with the independent-minded D.A. next week, and vehemently denies having told British intelligence to stop cooperating with the Manhattan grand jury.

Mueller's handling of the BCCI scandal as the point man for the Justice Department was widely criticized. As noted by a Senate report written by Senators Kerry and Brown:

Over the past two years, the Justice Department's handling of BCCI has been criticized in numerous editorials in major newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and the New York Times, reflecting similar criticism on the part of several Congressmen, including the chairman of the Subcommittee, Senator Kerry; the chief Customs undercover officer who handled the BCCI drug-money laundering sting, Robert Mazur; his superior at Customs, Commissioner William von Raab; New York District Attorney Robert Morgenthau; former Senate investigator Jack Blum, and, within the Justice Department itself, the former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Dexter Lehtinen.

Typical editorials criticized Justice's prosecution of BCCI as "sluggish," "conspicuously slow," "inattentive," and "lethargic." Several editorials noted that there had been "poor cooperation" by Justice with other agencies. One stated that "the Justice Department seems to have been holding up information that should have been passed on" to regulators and others. Another that "the Justice Department's secretive conduct in dealing with BCCI requires a better explanation than any so far offered.

***

Under Assistant Attorney General Mueller, the Department assigned nearly three dozen attorneys to the case. During 1992, the Department brought several indictments, which remained narrower, less detailed and, at times, seemingly in response to the efforts of District Attorney Robert Morgenthau of New York, the Federal Reserve, or both

***

Suddenly, on August 22, Dennis Saylor, chief assistant to Assistant Attorney General Mueller, called Lehtinen and, according to the US Attorney, "indicated to me that I was directed not to return the indictment."

The Senate Report also noted :

While the Justice Department's handling of BCCI has received substantial criticism, the office of Robert Morgenthau, District Attorney of New York, has generally received credit for breaking open the BCCI investigation.

***

In going after BCCI, Morgenthau's office quickly found that in addition to fighting off the bank, it would receive resistance from almost every other institution or entity connected to BCCI , including at various times, BCCI's multitude of prominent and politically well-connected lawyers, BCCI's accountants, BCCI's shareholders, the Bank of England, the British Serious Fraud Office, and the U.S. Department of Justice

Squashing Warning Signs that May Have Stopped 9/11

Larry Klayman writes :

Robert Mueller first hit my radar ... just months before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center.

***

I came to meet and later represent FBI Special Agents Robert Wright and John Vincent, of the agency's Chicago Counter-Terrorism Field Office. During our meeting, both Special Agents Wright and Vincent revealed to me that they had been conducting a counterterrorism investigation of Saudi money laundering into and in the United States, and they both believed that a massive terrorist attack was imminent.

In the course of this investigation, both special agents had asked a fellow FBI agent who was undercover, one of Muslim descent, to be wired to turn up further evidence of this terrorist operation. The Muslim agent refused, indignantly telling both Wright and Vincent that Muslims don't spy and rat on other Muslims. In shock, my soon-to-be clients reported this to their supervisors at the FBI, but no action was taken. To make matters worse, Wright's and Vincent's FBI supervisors quashed their investigation. They both believed that the order to kill the investigation came from the highest reaches of the FBI, and, upset it not outraged by this cover-up, Wright then decided to write a book detailing this breach of FBI honor.

The only way I could explain this cover-up was that then-FBI Director Robert Mueller was sensitive to the ties between the family of President George W. Bush and the Saudi royal family.

***

Director Mueller, along with his "yes men" supervisors at the agency, not only quashed my clients' investigation and ignored the disloyalty of the Muslim undercover agent, but then missed the warning signs leading up to September 11 – the biggest intelligence failure in American history, even surpassing Pearl Harbor.

But shamelessly, despite this historic intelligence failure and the World Trade Center terrorist attacks that ensued, Mueller later led an effort to drum both Special Agents Wright and Vincent out of the FBI, in part by attempting to remove their security clearances, as a "reward" for their candor.

FBI special agent – and a 2002 Time Person of the Year – Colleen Rowley points out :

The FBI and all the other officials claimed that there were no clues, that they had no warning [about 9/11] etc., and that was not the case. There had been all kinds of memos and intelligence coming in.

But overwhelming evidence shows that 9/11 was foreseeable . Indeed, Al Qaeda crashing planes into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon was itself foreseeable . Even the chair of the 9/11 Commission said that the attack was preventable .

Mueller was one of the people who dropped the ball and let 9/11 happen.

Allowing Escape of Saudi Persons Connected to Bin Laden

Right after 9/11, American airspace was closed down. Yet Mueller was one of the people who allowed relatives of Bin Laden and other persons of interest fly back to Saudi Arabia.

Entrapping Innocent People for P.R. Purposes

After dropping the ball, Mueller then went on to entrap innocent people for P.R. purposes.

And Rowley notes :

In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, Mueller directed the " post 9/11 round-up " of about 1,000 immigrants who mostly happened to be in the wrong place (the New York City area) at the wrong time. FBI Headquarters encouraged more and more detentions for what seemed to be essentially P.R. purposes. Field offices were required to report daily the number of detentions in order to supply grist for FBI press releases about FBI "progress" in fighting terrorism. Consequently, some of the detainees were brutalized and jailed for up to a year despite the fact that none turned out to be terrorists .

9/11 Cover Up

Rowley says :

TIME Magazine would probably have not called my own disclosures a " bombshell memo " to the Joint Intelligence Committee Inquiry in May 2002 if it had not been for Mueller's having so misled everyone after 9/11.

In addition, Rowley says that the FBI sent Soviet-style "minders" to her interviews with the Joint Intelligence Committee investigation of 9/11, to make sure that she didn't say anything the FBI didn't like. The chairs of both the 9/11 Commission and the Official Congressional Inquiry into 9/11 confirmed that government "minders" obstructed the investigation into 9/11 by intimidating witnesses (and see this ).

Mueller's FBI also obstructed the 9/11 investigation in many other ways. For example, an FBI informant hosted and rented a room to two hijackers in 2000. Specifically, investigators for the Congressional Joint Inquiry discovered that an FBI informant had hosted and even rented a room to two hijackers in 2000 and that, when the Inquiry sought to interview the informant, the FBI refused outright, and then hid him in an unknown location. See this and this .

Harper's notes :

Bob Graham, the former chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told me recently that Robert Mueller, then the FBI director (and now the special counsel investigating connections between Russia and the Trump campaign) made "the strongest objections" to Jacobson and his colleagues visiting San Diego.

Graham and his team defied Mueller's efforts, and Jacobson flew west. There he discovered that his hunch was correct. The FBI files in California were replete with extraordinary and damning details

***

Nevertheless, Mueller adamantly refused their demands to interview him, even when backed by a congressional subpoena, and removed Shaikh to an undisclosed location 'for his own safety.'

Graham also wrote that the FBI also "insisted that we could not, even in the most sanitized manner, tell the American people that an FBI informant had a relationship with two of the hijackers."

And Kristen Breitweiser - one of the four 9/11 widows instrumental in forcing the government to form the 9/11 Commission to investigate the 2001 attacks - points out :

Mueller and other FBI officials had purposely tried to keep any incriminating information specifically surrounding the Saudis out of the Inquiry's investigative hands. To repeat, there was a concerted effort by the FBI and the Bush Administration to keep incriminating Saudi evidence out of the Inquiry's investigation. And for the exception of the 29 full pages, they succeeded in their effort.

Iraq War

Rowley notes :

When you had the lead-up to the Iraq War Mueller and, of course, the CIA and all the other directors, saluted smartly and went along with what Bush wanted, which was to gin up the intelligence to make a pretext for the Iraq War. For instance, in the case of the FBI, they actually had a receipt, and other documentary proof, that one of the hijackers, Mohamed Atta, had not been in Prague, as Dick Cheney was alleging. And yet those directors more or less kept quiet. That included CIA, FBI, Mueller, and it included also the deputy attorney general at the time, James Comey.

Torture

Rowley also points out :

Mueller was even okay with the CIA conducting torture programs after his own agents warned against participation. Agents were simply instructed not to document such torture, and any "war crimes files" were made to disappear. Not only did "collect it all" surveillance and torture programs continue, but Mueller's (and then Comey's) FBI later worked to prosecute NSA and CIA whistleblowers who revealed these illegalities.

Anthrax Frame-Up

Mueller also presided over the incredibly flawed anthrax investigation.

The U.S. Government Accountability Office says the FBI's investigation was "flawed and inaccurate" . The investigation was so bogus that a senator called for an "independent review and assessment of how the FBI handled its investigation in the anthrax case."

The head of the FBI's anthrax investigation says the whole thing was a sham . He says that the FBI higher-ups "greatly obstructed and impeded the investigation", that there were "politically motivated communication embargoes from FBI Headquarters".

The FBI's anthrax investigation head said that the FBI framed scientist Bruce Ivins. On July 6, 2006, he filed a whistleblower report of mismanagement to the FBI's Deputy Director pursuant to Title 5, United States Code, Section 2303, which noted:

(j) the FBI's fingering of Bruce Ivins as the anthrax mailer ; and, (k) the FBI's subsequent efforts to railroad the prosecution of Ivins in the face of daunting exculpatory evidence

Following the announcement of its circumstantial case against Ivins, Defendants DOJ and FBI crafted an elaborate perception management campaign to bolster their assertion of Ivins' guilt . These efforts included press conferences and highly selective evidentiary presentations which were replete with material omissions

In other words, Mueller presided over the attempt to frame an innocent man (and see this ).

Unsure If Government Can Assassinate U.S. Citizens Living On U.S. Soil

Rather than saying "of course not!", Mueller said that he wasn't sure whether Obama had the right to assassinate Americans living on American soil .

Constitutional expert Jonathan Turley commented at the time:

One would hope that the FBI Director would have a handle on a few details guiding his responsibilities, including whether he can kill citizens without a charge or court order.

***

He appeared unclear whether he had the power under the Obama Kill Doctrine or, in the very least, was unwilling to discuss that power. For civil libertarians, the answer should be easy: "Of course, I do not have that power under the Constitution."

Crippled Investigations of Financial Fraud ... Helping to Allow the Great Recession

In a 2013 piece entitled " Mueller: I Crippled FBI Effort v. White-Collar Crime ", the country's top white collar crime expert, William Black – who put over 1,000 top S&L executives in jail for fraud, and is a professor of law and economics at the University of Missouri - wrote :

The FBI never developed "an intelligence operation" "to analyze threats" of even epidemic fraud.

***

White-collar crime investigations and prosecutions are massive money makers that reduce the deficit, but Mueller , Holder, and Obama refuse to make these points and refuse to prosecute the elite bank fraudsters. On substantive and political grounds their actions are either inexplicable or all too explicable and support my readers' belief that the FBI leadership no longer wants to investigate and prosecute the elite bank frauds.

This is important because:

[Nov 01, 2017] Natalia Veselnitskaya herself has ties to Fusion GPS, and was given visas with the knowledge of the FBI

Notable quotes:
"... Natalia Veselnitskaya herself has ties to Fusion GPS, and was given visas with the knowledge of the FBI. The whole affair smells of an FBI sting against the Trump campaign, ..."
Nov 01, 2017 | consortiumnews.com

j. D. D. , October 30, 2017 at 7:06 pm

Natalia Veselnitskaya herself has ties to Fusion GPS, and was given visas with the knowledge of the FBI. The whole affair smells of an FBI sting against the Trump campaign,

[Nov 01, 2017] Apparently Manifort and Gates have been denied Attorney Client Privilege (not entirely unprecedented, but shall we say in this case dubious, scary) in a financial crimes case

In 1985, Judge Sol Wachtler told a reporter that prosecutors had such influence over grand juries they could convince them to "indict a ham sandwich."
Nov 01, 2017 | consortiumnews.com

Susan Sunflower October 31, 2017 at 8:48 pm

be scared .. from Slate/Dahlia Litwick apparently Manifort and Gates have been denied Attorney Client Privilege (not entirely unprecedented, but shall we say in this case dubious, scary) -- this is a financial crimes case no exigent circumstances, not "criminal" as in "violent criminality" or imminent danger to anyone (I suspect they are "afraid" of being out-lawyered, out-maneuvered)

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/10/why_a_judge_ruled_paul_manafort_isn_t_entitled_to_attorney_client_privilege.html

[Oct 31, 2017] Sorting Out the Russia Mess by Robert Parry

Muller just sinks credibility of the US government to a new low exposing the internal fight between CIA/FBI and Pentagon for the control of the government. All this dirt digging is so highly selective, that the whole purpose if his investigation can be defined as "Discrediting of the US government and its institutions". The role of FBI now (notwisting nik in twitter is very similar to the role of CIA in JFK assassination: suspected kingmaker, which tried to control Trump campaign and was ready top pay Steele. Excluding DNC officiels form probe mean selective search for truth, which is a search for lies.
There are also serious questions about Papadopoulos's credibility. So far he emerges as a young, reckless and clueless political huckster. And where was General Flynt with his experience intelligence operations. He should understand that all Trump operation is under the microaope of Obmam-fireldly officiels in the administration including such a powerful figure as Brennan.
Also why the heck we have Papadopoulos as a source, when we have NSA and clear evidence that key Trump officials were all wiretapped.
Notable quotes:
"... However, Mifsud told The Washington Post in an email last August that he had "absolutely no contact with the Russian government" and described his ties to Russia as strictly in academic fields. ..."
"... In an interview with the U.K. Daily Telegraph after Monday's disclosures, Mifsud acknowledged meeting with Papadopoulos but disputed the contents of the conversations as cited in the court papers. Specifically, he denied knowing anything about emails containing "dirt" on Clinton and called the claim that he introduced Papadopoulos to a "female Russian national" as a "laughingstock." ..."
"... The absence of supporting evidence that Papadopoulos conveyed his hot news on the emails to campaign officials and Mifsud's insistence that he knew nothing about the emails would normally raise serious questions about Papadopoulos's credibility on this most crucial point. ..."
"... At least for now, those gaps represent major holes in the storyline. But Official Washington has been so desperate for "proof" about the alleged Russian "election meddling" for so long, that professional skepticism has been unwelcome in most media outlets. ..."
"... But the source said the more perplexing question was whether the Kremlin then ordered release of the data, something that Russian intelligence is usually loath to do and something that in this case would have risked retaliation from the expected winner of the 2016 election, Hillary Clinton. ..."
"... But such questions and doubts are clearly not welcome in the U.S. mainstream media, most of which has embraced Mueller's acceptance of Papadopoulos's story as the long-awaited "smoking gun" of Russia-gate. ..."
"... America's Stolen Narrative, ..."
"... Where are Podesta brothers? http://theduran.com/category/latest/ They both are extremely relevant and, unlike the petty story on the hapless chap Papadopolous, Podesta brothers' involvement into lobbying for Russia and Ukraine is well documented. The involvement had been substantial. Also, why no news about Awan-Wasserman affai, the greatest breach in national cybersecurity ever? ..."
"... Where is Mueller on the death of Seth Rich? The Dems have never provided any reward for finding the murderers of Seth (Assange did), but the Dems found money & legal help to protect Awan & Debbie Wasseman. As you wrote, "once again," the deciders are on a side of murderers, perverts, and thieves (see Clinton foundation and the $6 trillion "lost" by the Pentagon). ..."
"... No, I believe the whole Russiagate brouhaha is a sham, and if Russia did meddle in our politics, it is hypocritical of us who are far worse. I think the article I read recently by Stephen Cohen that we have meddled in over a hundred countries and continue to do so while appearing shocked that someone would do that to us, in the event that is what happened. ..."
"... In October 2016, Wikileaks released emails that revealed Donna Brazile tipped off the Clinton Campaign to debate questions and forwarded a plan she obtained from the Bernie Sanders campaign to the Clinton Campaign. CNN fired Brazile after the revelation, but the DNC has continued employing Brazile as a consultant." You see, DNC continues employing Brazile as a consultant in crime. ..."
"... There are no good players in any of this. I don't even think this quarrel has anything to do with the average American. This is a fight going on inside of a declining American government. The Empire is collapsing all around these greedy fools who call themselves leaders, and when the dollar does become just another piece of worthless paper, it won't be the fault of anyone other than the current leaders who now run the USofA. ..."
"... The "crucial gap" in evidence relates to allegation that the DNC hack was an inside job by a disillusioned Bernie Sanders supporter. However, the revelations about Seth Rich provide damning (if hearsay) evidence that the DNC ordered his execution. ..."
"... Murder of Seth Rich? Podesta brothers popping up at each step of the investigation as the lobbyists "colluding" with both Russia and Ukraine? Clinton Foundation and the lethal weaponry sales to Saudis? The CIA-arranged delivery of weapons to ISIS on Clinton's watch? http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/how-america-armed-terrorists-in-syria/ https://www.globalresearch.ca/logistics-101-where-does-isis-get-its-guns/5454726 The Uranium deal with Russia? – Including the $500.000 "speech fee" for the promiscuous Bill – remember Lolita Island, Dershowitz, and Epstein? ..."
"... The U.S. has been openly invading and destroying countries, involved in overthrowing elected leaders – sometimes have them murdered – engaged in destabilizing the countries for regime changes, interfering in their elections, for seven decades now. Have they forgotten what they did in 1996 Russia election and to Russia during 1990's. And here we are discussing a thirty year old Papadopoulos meeting some obscure professor discussing Russia or whatever; and we are endlessly discussing Hillary- Podesta and DNC emails – who leaked it? How low this country has come down to? Can't we see it? ..."
"... It is a shameful spectacle we are witnessing in this Country. One feels feels sick reading and hearing about about this whole trivial nonsense. Yet the whole Political Establishment and Media are drenched in this sewage for over a year now. No words can describe the complete moral collapse of the Country; collapse of integrity of institutions of law and justice – whatever was left of it. There is no honesty, truth or dignity left – in Journalists and others in Media, Politicians, and other high government functionaries. ..."
"... We are beginning to see the disgust for the people running the US government by many citizens like yourself. ..."
"... George Papadopoulos is directly connected to the pro-Israel Lobby, right wing Israeli political interests, and Israeli government efforts to control regional energy resources. ..."
"... The "online investigations" propaganda operation at Bellingcat site very much includes the comments section of the site. Don't expect Bellingcat to perform any actual journalism or substantive investigation. The function of the Atlantic Council's Bellingcat site is to serve as a propaganda channel for "fake news" and "alternative facts". ..."
"... Paul Manafort was indicted for supposedly establishing a relationship with a foreign government that was not covered by the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). ..."
"... Speaking of FARA, when is someone in the US government or the totally corrupted and bought-off US Congress going to demand that Israel and AIPAC be registered under FARA? And then: When will investigations begin into some of the truly treasonous acts and legislation shepherded by this foreign agent called AIPAC: -- like its interference with Free Speech protections in the US Bill of Rights, and this latest: Something about residents of some town in Texas forced to sign a loyalty pledge in support of Israel in order to receive funds to rebuild their stricken landscape ??? Is Israel putting up the money for disaster relief projects in America? If so, how did this come about? ..."
Oct 31, 2017 | consortiumnews.com

Exclusive: The U.S. mainstream media finally has its "smoking gun" on Russia-gate -- incriminating information from a junior Trump campaign adviser -- but a closer look reveals serious problems with the "evidence," writes Robert Parry.

Russia-gate special prosecutor Robert Mueller has turned up the heat on President Trump with the indictment of Trump's former campaign manager for unrelated financial crimes and the disclosure of a guilty plea from a low-level foreign policy adviser for lying to the FBI.

While longtime Republican fixer Paul Manafort, who helped guide Trump's campaign to the GOP nomination in summer 2016, was the big name in the news on Monday, the mainstream media focused more on court documents related to George Papadopoulos, a 30-year-old campaign aide who claims to have heard about Russia possessing Hillary Clinton's emails before they became public on the Internet, mostly via WikiLeaks.

While that would seem to bolster the Russia-gate narrative – that Russian intelligence "hacked" Democratic emails and President Vladimir Putin ordered the emails be made public to undermine Clinton's campaign – the evidentiary thread that runs through Papadopoulos's account remains tenuous.

That's in part because his credibility has already been undermined by his guilty plea for lying to the FBI and by the fact that he now has a motive to provide something the prosecutors might want in exchange for leniency. Plus, there is the hearsay and contested quality of Papadopoulos's supposed information, some of which already has turned out to be false.

According to the court documents, Papadopoulos got to know a professor of international relations who claimed to have "substantial connections with Russian government officials," with the professor identified in press reports as Joseph Mifsud, a little-known academic associated with the University of Stirling in Scotland.

The first contact supposedly occurred in mid-March 2016 in Italy, with a second meeting in London on March 24 when the professor purportedly introduced Papadopoulos to a Russian woman whom the young campaign aide believed to be Putin's niece, an assertion that Mueller's investigators determined wasn't true.

Trump, who then was under pressure for not having a foreign policy team, included Papadopoulos as part of a list drawn up to fill that gap, and Papadopoulos participated in a campaign meeting on March 31 in Washington at which he suggested a meeting between Trump and Putin, a prospect that other senior aides reportedly slapped down.

The 'Email' Breakfast

But Papadopoulos continued his outreach to Russia , according to the court documents, which depict the most explosive meeting as an April 26 breakfast in London with the professor (Mifsud) supposedly saying he had been in Moscow and "learned that the Russians had obtained 'dirt' on then-candidate Clinton" and possessed "thousands of emails." Mainstream press accounts concluded that Mifsud must have been referring to the later-released emails.

However, Mifsud told The Washington Post in an email last August that he had "absolutely no contact with the Russian government" and described his ties to Russia as strictly in academic fields.

In an interview with the U.K. Daily Telegraph after Monday's disclosures, Mifsud acknowledged meeting with Papadopoulos but disputed the contents of the conversations as cited in the court papers. Specifically, he denied knowing anything about emails containing "dirt" on Clinton and called the claim that he introduced Papadopoulos to a "female Russian national" as a "laughingstock."

According to the Telegraph interview , Mifsud said he tried to put Papadopoulos in touch with experts on the European Union and introduced him to the director of a Russian think tank, the Russian International Affairs Council.

It was the latter contact that the court papers presumably referred to in saying that on May 4, the Russian contact with ties to the foreign ministry wrote to Papadopoulos and Mifsud, reporting that ministry officials were "open for cooperation," a message that Papadopoulos forwarded to a senior campaign official, asking whether the contacts were "something we want to move forward with."

However, even an article in The New York Times, which has aggressively pushed the Russia-gate "scandal" from the beginning, noted the evidentiary holes that followed from that point.

The Times' Scott Shane wrote : "A crucial detail is still missing: Whether and when Mr. Papadopoulos told senior Trump campaign officials about Russia's possession of hacked emails. And it appears that the young aide's quest for a deeper connection with Russian officials, while he aggressively pursued it, led nowhere."

Shane added, "the court documents describe in detail how Mr. Papadopoulos continued to report to senior campaign officials on his efforts to arrange meetings with Russian officials, the documents do not say explicitly whether, and to whom, he passed on his most explosive discovery – that the Russians had what they considered compromising emails on Mr. Trump's opponent.

"J.D. Gordon, a former Pentagon official who worked for the Trump campaign as a national security adviser and helped arrange the March 31 foreign policy meeting, said he had known nothing about Mr. Papadopoulos' discovery that Russia had obtained Democratic emails or of his prolonged pursuit of meetings with Russians."

Reasons to Doubt

If prosecutor Mueller had direct evidence that Papadopoulos had informed the Trump campaign about the Clinton emails, you would assume that the proof would have been included in Monday's disclosures. Further, since Papadopoulos was flooding the campaign with news about his Russian outreach, you might have expected that he would say something about how helpful the Russians had been in publicizing the Democratic emails.

The absence of supporting evidence that Papadopoulos conveyed his hot news on the emails to campaign officials and Mifsud's insistence that he knew nothing about the emails would normally raise serious questions about Papadopoulos's credibility on this most crucial point.

At least for now, those gaps represent major holes in the storyline. But Official Washington has been so desperate for "proof" about the alleged Russian "election meddling" for so long, that professional skepticism has been unwelcome in most media outlets.

There is also another side of the story that rarely gets mentioned in the U.S. mainstream media: that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has repeatedly denied that he received the two batches of purloined Democratic emails – one about the Democratic National Committee and one about Clinton's campaign chairman John Podesta – from the Russians. While it is surely possible that the Russians might have used cutouts to pass on the emails, Assange and associates have suggested that at least the DNC emails came from a disgruntled insider.

Also, former U.S. intelligence experts have questioned whether at least one batch of disclosed emails could have come from an overseas "hack" because the rapid download speed is more typical of copying files locally onto a memory stick or thumb drive.

What I was told by an intelligence source several months ago was that Russian intelligence did engage in hacking efforts to uncover sensitive information, much as U.S. and other nations' intelligence services do, and that Democratic targets were included in the Russian effort.

But the source said the more perplexing question was whether the Kremlin then ordered release of the data, something that Russian intelligence is usually loath to do and something that in this case would have risked retaliation from the expected winner of the 2016 election, Hillary Clinton.

But such questions and doubts are clearly not welcome in the U.S. mainstream media, most of which has embraced Mueller's acceptance of Papadopoulos's story as the long-awaited "smoking gun" of Russia-gate.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America's Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com ).

Herman , October 31, 2017 at 12:57 pm

Once again. Trump voluntarily jumps into the hot seat by trying to discredit or dismiss the importance of someone who worked for him. This tactic may appeal to his committed supporters but only sets himself up since his claims and statements about the irrelevance of Papadopolous can be disproved. What he should be after is the truth about the emails

It is amazing how often people get charged with lying by being made to believe that not doing so would get them in trouble. The thing they lie about is very often not his crime but the lying. , .

Anna , October 31, 2017 at 1:21 pm

Where are Podesta brothers? http://theduran.com/category/latest/ They both are extremely relevant and, unlike the petty story on the hapless chap Papadopolous, Podesta brothers' involvement into lobbying for Russia and Ukraine is well documented. The involvement had been substantial.
Also, why no news about Awan-Wasserman affai, the greatest breach in national cybersecurity ever?

Where is Mueller on the death of Seth Rich? The Dems have never provided any reward for finding the murderers of Seth (Assange did), but the Dems found money & legal help to protect Awan & Debbie Wasseman. As you wrote, "once again," the deciders are on a side of murderers, perverts, and thieves (see Clinton foundation and the $6 trillion "lost" by the Pentagon).

What we see currently in DC is an attack of the Dulles' CIA against whatever has left of a rule of law in this country. The RussiaGate is a dangerous play (not even a game) by the spoiled and incompetent "deciders" who found Trump unpalatable.

Back in the USSR , October 31, 2017 at 1:33 pm

Herman If the Clinton Campaign and the DNC can claim that they have no memory of how the Fusion GPS opposition research was funded, for millions of dollars, then why isn't it just as plausible that Trump had little or no contact or interaction with a low level staffer like Papadopoulos? Last week we heard that it does not matter who funded Fusion GPS because it is normal for campaigns to do opposition research even if it was from Russia. Yet, when Trump Jr. took a meeting to do the same, it was labeled Treason. I imagine these idiosyncrasies don't phase the average liberal MSM consumer, but they are a problem for Trump supporters and a good reason why they voted him into the White House.

Herman , October 31, 2017 at 5:52 pm

I agree with you, it's just that I think Trump is wrong in attacking members of his staff or cabinet. Let someone else do that. Discrediting people has worked but with Trump the immediate response is focus on him and it doesn't help by attacking your own.

No, I believe the whole Russiagate brouhaha is a sham, and if Russia did meddle in our politics, it is hypocritical of us who are far worse. I think the article I read recently by Stephen Cohen that we have meddled in over a hundred countries and continue to do so while appearing shocked that someone would do that to us, in the event that is what happened.

BobH , October 31, 2017 at 1:34 pm

Herman,
"It is amazing how often people get charged with lying by being made to believe that not doing so would get them in trouble. The thing they lie about is very often not his crime but the lying. ",,,very true, Bill Clinton's meaning of the word "is" comes to mind. As far as the source of "Russian hacking" is concerned it appears that it may come down to academic gossip.

Anna , October 31, 2017 at 1:55 pm

Embracing criminality to minute details: http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=20340
"Despite calls for unity from DNC Chair Tom Perez, his DNC appointments heavily favored lobbyists and Clinton supporters. No Sanders supporter was appointed to the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee

In October 2016, Wikileaks released emails that revealed Donna Brazile tipped off the Clinton Campaign to debate questions and forwarded a plan she obtained from the Bernie Sanders campaign to the Clinton Campaign. CNN fired Brazile after the revelation, but the DNC has continued employing Brazile as a consultant." You see, DNC continues employing Brazile as a consultant in crime.

Anna , October 31, 2017 at 1:38 pm

To take your attention away from the small fish: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-10-31/pat-buchanan-exposes-other-plot-bring-down-trump
Enjoy:
"The narrative begins in October 2015.

Then it was that the Washington Free Beacon, a neocon website, engaged a firm of researchers called Fusion GPS to do deep dirt-diving into Trump's personal and professional life -- and take him out. A spinoff of Bill Kristol's The Weekly Standard, the Beacon is run by his son-in-law. And its Daddy Warbucks is the GOP oligarch and hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer.

From October 2015 to May 2016, Fusion GPS dug up dirt for the neocons and never-Trumpers. By May, however, Trump had routed all rivals and was the certain Republican nominee. So the Beacon bailed, and Fusion GPS found two new cash cows to finance its dirt-diving -- the DNC and the Clinton campaign. To keep the sordid business at arm's length, both engaged the party's law firm of Perkins Coie. Paid $12.4 million by the DNC and Clinton campaign, Perkins used part of this cash hoard to pay Fusion GPS.

Here is where it begins to get interesting.

In June 2016, Fusion GPS engaged a British spy, Christopher Steele, who had headed up the Russia desk at MI6, to ferret out any connections between Trump and Russia. Steele began contacting old acquaintances in the FSB, the Russian intelligence service. And the Russians began to feed him astonishing dirt on Trump that could, if substantiated, kill his candidacy. Among the allegations was that Trump had consorted with prostitutes at a Moscow hotel, that the Kremlin was blackmailing him, that there was provable collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

In memos from June to October 2016, Steele passed this on to Fusion GPS, which passed it on to major U.S. newspapers. But as the press was unable to verify it, they declined to publish it. Steele's final product, a 35-page dossier, has been described as full of "unsubstantiated and salacious allegations." Steele's research, however, had also made its way to James Comey's FBI, which was apparently so taken with it that the bureau considered paying Steele to continue his work.

About this "astonishing" development, columnist Byron York of the Washington Examiner quotes Sen. Chuck Grassley:

"The idea that the FBI and associates of the Clinton campaign would pay Mr. Steele to investigate the Republican nominee for president in the run-up to the election raises questions about the FBI's independence from politics, as well as the Obama administration's use of law enforcement and intelligence agencies for political ends."

The questions begin to pile up. What was the FBI's relationship with the British spy who was so wired into Russian intelligence?

Did the FBI use the information Steele dug up to expand its own investigation of Russia-Trump "collusion"? Did the FBI pass what Steele unearthed to the White House and the National Security Council?

Did the Obama administration use the information from the Steele dossier to justify unmasking the names of Trump officials that had been picked up on legitimate electronic intercepts?

In testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, Clinton campaign chair John Podesta and DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz claimed they did not know that Perkins Coie had enlisted Fusion GPS or the British spy to dig up dirt on Trump. Yet, when Podesta testified, the lawyer sitting beside him in the committee room was Marc Elias of Perkins Coie, who had engaged Fusion GPS and received the fruits of Steele's undercover work."

One more time: "Clinton campaign chair John Podesta and DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz claimed they did not know that Perkins Coie had enlisted Fusion GPS or the British spy to dig up dirt on Trump. Yet, when Podesta testified, the lawyer sitting beside him in the committee room was Marc Elias of Perkins Coie, who had engaged Fusion GPS and received the fruits of Steele's undercover work."

Is not this look much more compromising than an alleged involvement something the clueless Papadopolous?

Podesta brothers and H. Clinton are criminals; there are mounds of evidence -- not "alleged" and "perhaps" and "with high degree of confidence" -- but the hard evidence of their criminal activities.

Dave P. , October 31, 2017 at 3:06 pm

Anna – Excellent comments. Very accurate conclusions.

BobH , October 31, 2017 at 3:44 pm

Anna, all your points are well taken,,,nice job of connecting the dots!

Joe Tedesky , October 31, 2017 at 4:18 pm

Anna you write it better than most reporters do, and yes it is amazing to how these allegations in the Russia-Gate affair trumps the hard evidence found in the Hillary and Bill pay for play kick back collusion with the Russians. Although, if you keep the channel dial on CNN or MSNBC you may be put under the spell that Trump is a traitor, and guilty as charged of treason in the court of public opinion which holds court on the 45th president nightly if you care to watch. On the other hand if you watch FOX you will certainly start screaming 'lock her up'. I personally find Hillary and Bill guilty of bribery in regard to their Uranium One dealings, and I find her security breach inexcusable for what she did with her private computer servers. I also can't get over how Crowd Strike took preference over the FBI to examine Hillary's bleached hard drives in her illegally used computers. Then we have the Trump people looking like a celebrity autograph hound standing at the wrong stage door exit waiting to get their play program signed, only to miss their favorite celebrity, because of course they were waiting at the wrong door. In fact the more that comes out about how Trump's people tried to get something on Hillary from the Russians, the more foolish they look for even trying.

There are no good players in any of this. I don't even think this quarrel has anything to do with the average American. This is a fight going on inside of a declining American government. The Empire is collapsing all around these greedy fools who call themselves leaders, and when the dollar does become just another piece of worthless paper, it won't be the fault of anyone other than the current leaders who now run the USofA.

Skip Edwards , October 31, 2017 at 8:29 pm

Yes, the goods are in and you called it like it is; our government is, and has been, corrupt over many many Presidential Administrations and Congresses. The UNITED STATES is a failed experiment in democracy and we have but ourselves to blame. A citizenry who takes no interest or responsibility for Tha actions of its government deserves to die. The funeral is not far off if anyone is remaining to attend, and this time learn from history. In the meantime let's put all these people in jail; starting with the Clinton's.

Kalen , October 31, 2017 at 5:02 pm

Also and most importantly he should be after what was in those emails which describe criminal acts, collusion, coercion and overall corruption in DNC for which many heads already rolled after they were politically guillotined. Selective search for truth is a search for lies.

John Kirsch , October 31, 2017 at 1:12 pm

Excellent article.

Danny Weil , October 31, 2017 at 1:23 pm

This gets dirtier and dirtier everyday.

As an attorney, I can tell you that eyewitness testimony is the worst testimony you can have, for various reasons:

1. People often mistake what they see (Watch 12 Angry Men from 1959, this is a good example)

2. People lie for their own self interests

Without corroborating evidence, in the form of either circumstantial or direct, it is hard to believe what is being put out.

But it is important to note that all good critical thinking requires an openness to new evidence.

This being said, flipping the young aide is not enough.

irina , October 31, 2017 at 5:14 pm

Critical thinking is in short supply these days. I just dropped a class (supposedly) on Circumpolar Social Issues,
because the professor told me that 'the class was geared to young adults' and she did not expect them to engage
in critical thinking, what she was actually looking for was 'condensed regurgitation of the text'. (She used those
exact words, which I had used previously to call her out on her abysmally awful exam). Yikes ! I had no idea there
was an age requirement for critical thinking ! (I found my young kids to be quite good at it, and kept them out of
school so they wouldn't lose that capacity.)

When people end up in social media bubbles, they are engaging with a 'mirror-feedback effect', which disallows
the openness to new evidence required for critical thinking. What we used to call a Catch-22 of sorts . . .

Dave P. , October 31, 2017 at 8:12 pm

Danny Weil –

Yes. We watched 12 Angry Men starring Henry Fonda just two weeks ago. Both, one and two of your comments, very true and relevant in this case.

irina , October 31, 2017 at 9:38 pm

We performed that play in high school in about 1970 (the 12 Angry Women version, as there were lots more
females than males interested in being in it). With simple staging, we were able to take it to other area high
schools for performance. Would be a good play to resurrect ! (With a name change to 12 Angry Citizens).

Michael , October 31, 2017 at 1:29 pm

Robert, you have done so much excellent reporting. And you are of course right to be skeptical -- and you raise good questions. But man, doubt should be a screen not a hammer. You write like a defense attorney rather than pursuer of the truth.

Might the Russia/Trump case be overstated? Yes. But it is getting harder and harder to dismiss it.

with respect,

mike k , October 31, 2017 at 3:02 pm

It wasn't hard for any truthful person to refute the shabby russiagate lies. Why at you having a problem doing that Michael?

Jonathan Marshall , October 31, 2017 at 1:30 pm

The "crucial gap" in evidence relates to alleged Russian collusion with the Trump campaign. However, the revelations about Papadopolous provide damning (if hearsay) evidence that Russia was behind the email hacking.

Back in the USSR , October 31, 2017 at 1:41 pm

/The "crucial gap" in evidence relates to alleged Russian collusion with the Trump campaign. However, the revelations about Papadopolous provide damning (if hearsay) evidence that Russia was behind the email hacking./

Er, hmm, okay

The "crucial gap" in evidence relates to allegation that the DNC hack was an inside job by a disillusioned Bernie Sanders supporter. However, the revelations about Seth Rich provide damning (if hearsay) evidence that the DNC ordered his execution.

lol

Anna , October 31, 2017 at 2:05 pm

Murder of Seth Rich? Podesta brothers popping up at each step of the investigation as the lobbyists "colluding" with both Russia and Ukraine? Clinton Foundation and the lethal weaponry sales to Saudis? The CIA-arranged delivery of weapons to ISIS on Clinton's watch? http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/how-america-armed-terrorists-in-syria/ https://www.globalresearch.ca/logistics-101-where-does-isis-get-its-guns/5454726 The Uranium deal with Russia? – Including the $500.000 "speech fee" for the promiscuous Bill – remember Lolita Island, Dershowitz, and Epstein?

mike k , October 31, 2017 at 3:07 pm

Please take your "damning (hearsay) evidence somewhere else. There is NO evidence whatever of Russia hacking anything that has been presented – just slurs and innuendos. This site puts a premium on real EVIDENCE.

Dave P. , October 31, 2017 at 3:43 pm

Jonathan Marshall –

The U.S. has been openly invading and destroying countries, involved in overthrowing elected leaders – sometimes have them murdered – engaged in destabilizing the countries for regime changes, interfering in their elections, for seven decades now. Have they forgotten what they did in 1996 Russia election and to Russia during 1990's. And here we are discussing a thirty year old Papadopoulos meeting some obscure professor discussing Russia or whatever; and we are endlessly discussing Hillary- Podesta and DNC emails – who leaked it? How low this country has come down to? Can't we see it?

It is a shameful spectacle we are witnessing in this Country. One feels feels sick reading and hearing about about this whole trivial nonsense. Yet the whole Political Establishment and Media are drenched in this sewage for over a year now. No words can describe the complete moral collapse of the Country; collapse of integrity of institutions of law and justice – whatever was left of it. There is no honesty, truth or dignity left – in Journalists and others in Media, Politicians, and other high government functionaries.

Andrew M , October 31, 2017 at 5:15 pm

Dave P, I like and share this big picture view. I do value sites like this (and quality of comment like this) to show it up. The hollowness of the mainstream shell game is being seen by more and more people. The good news is that if we see that the shell game is a losing game we're outside of it. Those "outsiders" are free, if the can grasp hold of it.

irina , October 31, 2017 at 5:16 pm

Judy Woodruff is among the worst offenders. I can't stand to watch/listen to her anymore. Is it true that she is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations ? I read that somewhere.

Skip Edwards , October 31, 2017 at 8:40 pm

We are beginning to see the disgust for the people running the US government by many citizens like yourself. Can "we" salvage enough to keep "our" country whole; or, does this have to be an end but with a new beginning. Maybe a court of law prosecuting the entire bunch, Democrats and Republicans, for crimes against humanity, aka war crimes, and crimes against its citizenry, aka embezzlement, can save "us." The other two branches have certainly failed"us."

Abe , October 31, 2017 at 1:49 pm

George Papadopoulos is directly connected to the pro-Israel Lobby, right wing Israeli political interests, and Israeli government efforts to control regional energy resources.

Papadopoulos' LinkedIn page lists his association with the right wing Hudson Institute. The Washington, D.C.-based think tank part of pro-Israel Lobby web of militaristic security policy institutes that promote Israel-centric U.S. foreign policy.

The Hudson Institute confirmed that Papadopoulos was an intern who left the neoconservative think tank in 2014. In 2014, Papadopoulos authored op-ed pieces in Israeli publications. In an op-ed published in Arutz Sheva, media organ of the right wing Religionist Zionist movement embraced by the Israeli "settler" movement, Papadopoulos argued that the U.S. should focus on its "stalwart allies" Israel, Greece, and Cyprus to "contain the newly emergent Russian fleet".

In another op-ed published in Ha'aretz, Papadopoulos contended that Israel should exploit its natural gas resources in partnership with Cyprus and Greece rather than Turkey.

In November 2015, Papadapalous participated in a conference in Tel Aviv, discussing the export of natural gas from Israel with a panel of current and past Israeli government officials including Ron Adam, a representative of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Eran Lerman, a former Israeli Deputy National Security Adviser.

Israel's coming planned military assault on Lebanon and Syria has a lot to do with natural gas resources, both offshore from Gaza and on land in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights region.

Among its numerous violations of United Nations Resolution 242, Israel annexed the Syrian Golan Heights in 1981.

Geopolitical researcher F. William Engdahl has discussed the energy resources in the Golan Heights, Israel, and Trump
http://www.williamengdahl.com/englishNEO30Mar2017.php

Engdahl notes "we might find ourselves in another war for oil in of all places the Golan Heights, this one a war involving Syria, Russia, Iran, Lebanon's Hezbollah on one side and Israel and Rex Tillerson's 68 nation 'anti-ISIS coalition' on the other side, another senseless war over control of oil."

Abe , October 31, 2017 at 2:06 pm

"US policymakers have stated multiple times that before war with Iran can be pursued directly, both Syria and Hezbollah must be weakened first. A war with Lebanon thus could be a means to either directly lead into direct conflict with Tehran, or as a means of preparing for one in the near or intermediate future.

"Immediate Peace and Stability vs. Constant and Perpetual War

"What is clear is that the 2015 Russian intervention in Syria along with Iran's growing influence in the region has rolled back attempts by the US and its partners to reassert control over the Middle East they have sought since the Cold War. With a new multipolar coalition of emerging regional and global powers, US dreams of hegemony will be increasingly more difficult to achieve [ ]

"Lebanon has been a battlefield in the past the US has used as a vector toward greater regional conflict. Its ability or inability to create conflict there again, directly or through Israel, and that conflict's ability or inability to drag Iran, Syria and other players in directly, will determine the outlook for America's wider agenda in the region."

Lebanon Next in US War on Middle East
By Ulson Gunnar
http://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2017/10/lebanon-next-in-us-war-on-middle-east.html

Abe , October 31, 2017 at 4:28 pm

The fake "citizen investigative journalists" team at Bellingcat are busy on the case with more of their signature "creative Googling".

This time it's a photograph of Papadopoulos in London
https://www.bellingcat.com/news/americas/2017/10/31/new-george-papadopoulos-photograph-actually-years-old/

The "online investigations" propaganda operation at Bellingcat site very much includes the comments section of the site. Don't expect Bellingcat to perform any actual journalism or substantive investigation. The function of the Atlantic Council's Bellingcat site is to serve as a propaganda channel for "fake news" and "alternative facts".

Knomore , October 31, 2017 at 2:20 pm

A sardine is hauled in and the big fish swim away. This story seems to suggest either massive chutzpah on the part of the Clinton campaign or stupidity fueled by desperation. That they would allow Mueller's investigation to go forward when they were sitting on a mountain of graft, collusion and other malfeasance (i.e., uranium sold to Russia for among other things half a million straight into Billl's pocket) all of it, really quite amazing.

We got two uniformly bad candidates in the 2016 elections, both of whom were/are ardent supporters of Israel. How did that happen? And Paul Manafort was indicted for supposedly establishing a relationship with a foreign government that was not covered by the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA).

Speaking of FARA, when is someone in the US government or the totally corrupted and bought-off US Congress going to demand that Israel and AIPAC be registered under FARA? And then: When will investigations begin into some of the truly treasonous acts and legislation shepherded by this foreign agent called AIPAC: -- like its interference with Free Speech protections in the US Bill of Rights, and this latest: Something about residents of some town in Texas forced to sign a loyalty pledge in support of Israel in order to receive funds to rebuild their stricken landscape ??? Is Israel putting up the money for disaster relief projects in America? If so, how did this come about?

BobH , October 31, 2017 at 3:58 pm

Knomore, "A sardine is hauled in and the big fish swim away" I think you are anticipating what's likely to happen if/when it does Wikileaks could well drop the other shoe, but Mueller needs to finish his investigation even if it's headed in a bogus direction.

"Speaking of FARA, when is someone in the US government or the totally corrupted and bought-off US Congress going to demand that Israel and AIPAC be registered under FARA?" excellent point and Saudi Arabia should register under FARA as well, for its sinister funding of American think tanks.

Danny Weil , October 31, 2017 at 2:23 pm

From the World Socialist Web Site:"

31 October 2017
Three months ago, the World Socialist Web Site published its first exposé documenting Google's blacklisting of the WSWS and other left-wing websites. It warned that Google's actions were part of a sweeping campaign, coordinated with the US government, media and intelligence agencies, to censor the Internet.

The period since this initial exposure has seen this campaign develop with extraordinary speed, as the Democratic Party, working with major media outlets, uses unsubstantiated allegations of Russian "hacking" of the 2016 election to mount a drive to criminalize political opposition within the United States. What is involved is nothing less than the greatest attack on the First Amendment since the Second World War

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/10/31/pers-o31.html

mike k , October 31, 2017 at 3:12 pm

Yes, Our freedom of speech is under serious attack by the oligarchic fascist oppressors within America. They fear truth more than anything.

Drew Hunkins , October 31, 2017 at 2:24 pm

It's mind blowing to see my liberal friends fall for all the Russophobic nonsense. Mueller's indeed on a witch hunt. Try telling that to your Maddow brainwashed liberal colleagues, sheesh.

Go after Trump for the right reasons! Not for phony baloney that puts the world on nuclear brinkmanship!

Dmitri , October 31, 2017 at 3:10 pm

Trump provided them a very good reason to impeach him when last April he ordered an attack on Syria in violation of both international law (an attack on a sovereign country that posed no threat to the US) and the US law (a use of military force without Congress authorization). But no, they all approved this illegal action!

mike k , October 31, 2017 at 3:13 pm

Exactly right Drew.

Stephen , October 31, 2017 at 3:48 pm

It appears that this whole thing is the Democrats version of the "birther" claims some Republicans hung onto for years. I suppose I could be wrong but if they had solid evidence you would see it thirty times a day like when they showed the twin towers falling thirty times a day.
The Puerto Rico disaster is good enough reason to go after Trump but I suppose the lily white Democratic elites don't care about Puerto Ricans anymore than does Trump.

Dave P. , October 31, 2017 at 3:55 pm

Drew Hunkins – Yes. Very true.

Andrew , October 31, 2017 at 2:43 pm

I think there is a clear evidence that Trump's camp reached out to Russia. Whether the Russians did anything to help Trump (e.g., DNC hack) is a different story. More than likely not.

mike k , October 31, 2017 at 3:15 pm

Since when was "reaching out to Russia" a crime? This is just Orwellian word demonizing BS.

Andrew , October 31, 2017 at 3:32 pm

Lying to federal investigator is. Contrary to a popular belief, stupid is a crime.

witters , October 31, 2017 at 9:29 pm

Andrew, how long did you get?

Drew Hunkins , October 31, 2017 at 4:37 pm

Exactly mike k. Right now we need doves in Washington (if there are any left) trying their damnedest to have a dialogue with Moscow. Just very recently the imbecilic Pence was at a nuclear launch site in Minot ND pontificating to media and personnel who were present about how they should be fully prepared to launch! This is preposterous and dangerous lunacy.

Washington has been virtually taken over by a militaristic-Zionist cabal and its currently dead set on destabilizing relationships among nuclear powers. The demonization towards the Kremlin at a time when the major media are fomenting a witch hunt atmosphere is breathtaking to behold.

That liberals -- in their hatred of the big bad Trumpenstein -- are going along with this terrifying group think is one of the more irrational and incredible dynamics I've ever witnessed in my decades of following the politico-economic scene.

Hate Trump for the right reasons. Don't fall for a Paul Singer, Bill Kristol, et. al., orchestrated propaganda campaign.

Fitzgerald said the mark of a true intellectual is to hold two opposing views in one's mind at the simultaneously and maintain the ability to function.

Drew Hunkins , October 31, 2017 at 4:49 pm

Whoops garbled my last paragraph:

hold two opposing views in one's mind simultaneously and maintain the ability to function.

The editor regrets the error.

Mark Thomason , October 31, 2017 at 2:48 pm

The statement of charge does not set out meetings of the sort that need to be proved.

It does suggest that the guy has been cooperating against others, "proactive" about it too as in wearing a wire.

It tells us to expect more, of a particular sort. That is the real importance, not what it spells out.

fudmier , October 31, 2017 at 3:00 pm

Russia gate: another Divide and Conquer (D&C) staged propaganda bit. Here we go again! Good report.
Look @ well researched https://isgp-studies.com/ explains how massively embedded criminal networks use the awesome powers and resources of salaried government to deprive the non salaried governed 99% (basically the video entranced barnyard hosted citizens) of their quality of life and peace of mind. Suggest to study the ISGP site carefully; refer to it often as it reveals a wealth of organized criminal activities and demonstrates just how difficult it promises to be to maintain a human rights oriented integrity in government. Unless the government is audited by the governed, and state secrets of any kind for any reason are eliminated progress will never happen.

____Abe's citation of Engdahl => "we might find ourselves in another war for oil in of all places the Golan Heights, this one a war involving Syria, Russia, Iran, Lebanon's Hezbollah on one side and Israel and Rex Tillerson's 68 nation 'anti-ISIS coalition' on the other side, another senseless war over control of oil."" suggest Tillerson s\b taken seriously, as should the looming anticipation that the anti-Assad (Syrian belligerent invaders) still plan to use false flag poison gas ops to bring down Assad, and to destroy Syria, this time it seems to be in USA backed occupied Allepo, Syria ( see. https://friendsofsyria.wordpress.com/ ). Its all about oil and gas; take a look at the LNG oil and gas seaports' in America. then ask yourselves .. who, where, why and when and what happens to 100 trillion private dollar investment if the LNG business plan fails? ). Nothing will change until the video entranced barnyard humanity is allowed to see the facts outside of false narrative propaganda. Could the solution to better government and the elimination of war be as simple as being sure everyone in the world has easy, accurately translated, access to unbiased, reliable news and information? probably not, some means to get the barnyard critters to understand it would be needed.

michael lacey , October 31, 2017 at 3:02 pm

How long is this BS going to continue! Maybe we could produce a narrative on how the United States interfere in elections globally; we do not have to dig that deep!
As usual good article

mike k , October 31, 2017 at 3:17 pm

The BS will continue until we find enough ways to stop it. This site is one way. Truth is the antidote to lies.

Jay , October 31, 2017 at 3:21 pm

"George Papadopoulos, a 30-year-old campaign aide who claims to have heard about Russia possessing Hillary Clinton's emails before they became public on the Internet, mostly via WikiLeaks."

Respectfully: No one but Benghazi "gate" pushers care about Hillary Clinton's emails.

The leaked DNC emails and the very likely leaked Podesta emails on the other hand are of grave concern, since they show the DNC conspiring against the Sanders nomination.

In short: Who cares what Papadopoulos has to say about Hillary emails, they're not really the subject the "Russian hacking" claims.

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 5:04 pm

Since "they" (Papadopoulos) never saw the e-mails (or any e-mails) it's impossible to know which tranche of e-mails was (allegedly) offered and there are several known collections/leaks/hacks, as well as possibly still unknown collections . making it even more murky.

As needs to be remembered, even if an "insider" downloaded and leaked e-mails, that does not preclude a hack and a hack does not preclude a leak (or multiple leaks or hacks).

Caitlin Johnson does some nice unpacking of the -- often faulty -- assumptions about meeting dates as they relate to published e-mails https://medium.com/@caityjohnstone/why-george-papadopoulos-is-as-insignificant-as-paul-manafort-b964ff3d3d37

She also reminds us that the first big WikiLeaks "Clinton e-mails" dump was the result of FOIA request

the mind reels a bit (given the apparent insignificance of these dumps/leaks on public opinion) but:

But there's no reason to believe that the emails in question, if they existed at all, would have been the documents WikiLeaks ended up releasing in October of 2016. Firstly, they could have been not emails from Podesta, but from Hillary Clinton herself. Remember, there were numerous indications that Clinton's server was insecure and may have been hacked by multiple foreign governments, any of which could have gotten them to the Kremlin for use as blackmail following what was at the time believed to be Hillary's inevitable election. Maybe it was the infamous 30,000 emails she deleted, who knows, or any number of possible ways incriminating information can appear in email format. None of these fit into the official Russia/WikiLeaks narrative, however, so Litman made it about Podesta emails.

It would be interesting if the phantom e-mails allegedly offered by "Russians" in February/March were the same "dirt" allegedly offered in that August meeting

The stupidity of those still beating-a-dead-horse wrt Trump's "joke" about the Russians maybe locating / hacking to find the 35,000 Clinton e-mails is beyond all endurance and yet it persists.

Stephen J. , October 31, 2017 at 3:28 pm

I believe if there really was "law and order" in America, there would be massive arrests of those in power and their allies, (Past and present) for war crimes and crimes against humanity. Unfortunately what we are seeing is: The "Posturing of Evil"
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
September 24, 2017
The Posturing of Evil

The posturing of evil is a sight to behold
Purveyors of war crimes that need to be told
Clad in expensive suits, are these well dressed war criminals
Men and women without any morals or principles

So called "leaders" of the human race
They really are a bloody disgrace
Invaders of countries in illegal wars
They are yesterday and today's warmongering whores

Millions are dead because of their atrocious war crimes
Millions are refugees because of their dirty pastime
Creating wars is what these war perverts do
Paid for by compulsory taxes from me and you

Financiers and supporters of terrorists as well
These treasonous villains create more hell
They are hypocrites that talk of, 'the rule of law"
Their lying words should stick in your craw

Countries are destroyed and civil wars rage
This is how the corporate cannibals get paid
Supplying the weapons of death and disaster
Killing innocent victims very much faster

Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen and other countries too
Are hell holes of destruction caused by this unholy crew
They parade on the world stage and give unctuous talks
When really most of these criminals should be in the dock

On trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity
Instead they are free and spreading their insanity
They have caused death and destruction and massive upheaval
How much more will people take of this posturing of evil?

[more info at link below]
http://graysinfo.blogspot.ca/2017/09/the-posturing-of-evil.html

mike k , October 31, 2017 at 5:04 pm

Your poems pack a punch Stephen. They are a treat for truth lovers.

Drew Hunkins , October 31, 2017 at 5:21 pm

The careerism of the "respected" mass media commentators, journalists and talking heads could lead the world to nuclear war. Many of these whores know exactly what they're doing. Many of them know there was no attempt by the Kremlin to "hack" the election or otherwise interfere in the election but they feed the public repetitive nonsense over and over and over again.

That otherwise liberal minded, intelligent people are buying into this dangerous group think is one of the more incredible things I've ever witnessed.

People's critical thinking faculties have left them. Otherwise intelligent people are bereft of critical thinking skills when it comes to the big bad Trumpenstein and it's horrifying to see this all play out.

Attack Trump for the right reasons, NOT because he desire rapprochement with Moscow and dared to suggest the Washington empire should be reined in a bit.

Bill , October 31, 2017 at 5:29 pm

*Trump gets caught on tape discussing the hacking of the DNC with Putin himself, and laughing about how they were going to get Trump the presidency together.*

Robert Parry, probably: "While this would seem to bolster the Russiagate narrative, the media's blowing it out of proportion, and what if it's a fake tape? And what about Hillary!?"

You're truly a stand up guy dude, and I appreciate your journalism, but I think you're kinda biased on this one.

That's not to say you're not correct about MSM intolerance of debate and skepticism. That's absolutely true. Still, I think it's pretty clear what happened here, and that the DNC was indeed hacked. Might not ever get legally proven, but let's be real. That's exactly what this looks like.

Leslie F , October 31, 2017 at 5:42 pm

"Russia-gate special prosecutor Robert Mueller has turned up the heat on President Trump with the indictment of Trump's former campaign manager for unrelated financial crimes and the disclosure of a guilty plea from a low-level foreign policy adviser for lying to the FBI."

Well, there is a conspiracy against the United States charge against Manafort which could mean almost anything like conspiracy to evade taxes which would fit with the money laundering or it could be an attempt to tie him to the dubious Papadapoulos narrative. Papadapoulas has only with charged with lying to the FBI, not with anything that could be called "collusion". Maybe that was the plea agreement or maybe they know the case isn't really there.

ADL , October 31, 2017 at 6:02 pm

Ahh yes Parry's weekly comical defense of the 'man with a plan'. Kinda disappointed tho – I mean usually his columns are headlined with COUP COUP COUP.
Let's see now. Robert Mueller is a hack, won't let poor Parry into his inner circle, and amazingly does not leak or publicize exactly who and what he is investigating. And everything he has learned during such. And Parry takes his weekly shots. Pretty pathetic.

"credibility has already been undermined by his guilty plea' ??????? That is pretty comical yes?

Parry's defense of Papa is incredibly amateurish – he should start screenwriting TV Drama's. According to Parry Mueller should lay out every piece of evidence he has, should try his whole case in his indictment and in the public theater. And have all the evidence within 30 days of investigation or give up. Or better yet just include Parry on his Prosecutor team. But that would not work – from day one Parry has been Trump's #1 defender. Hell, it took Trump praising the KKK in Charlottesville to even get a whimper of outrage out of Parry.

This continual drivel plays out like a desperate person who is completely out of the loop, or better yet a man with a pathological grudge – almost always against NYT and WAPO.
I have no issues with calling out any person, and media. But Parry reads like Hannity or Trump himself. It's embarrassing and not worth the paper written on.

Anon , October 31, 2017 at 7:38 pm

Zionist alert – ADL is the only truth in the comment.

Realist , October 31, 2017 at 6:06 pm

This whole special investigation is like something out of Kafka. It starts with unsubstantiated politically-driven accusations by the opposition party, progresses to a witch hunt to desperately find any evidence against the prime target (Trump), and when that hole proves dry it slouches toward trying to trick and trap peripheral witnesses (Papadopoulos) into making contradictory statements for which they can be indicted for "lying" to federal agents. Or else political or business associates of the target (Manafort) can be pressured and indicted on unrelated offenses. That indictment can then be used as leverage to get the indicted person to turn evidence (whether any exists or not) against the primary target in return for reduced sentences or even pardons. If this useful tool lies further in trying to please his new masters, who cares? Mission accomplished. Before this is over, there will be more kangaroos at large in American courts than on the Australian continent. America is truly a beacon of freedom, democracy and, above all, JUSTICE for the entire world to admire. How utterly exceptional! A country where even its elected president can be railroaded like a common street criminal if it suits those ruling from the shadows. Behold the coup d'etat thrown together with nothing more than smoke and mirrors, vague accusations and strong-arm tactics against witnesses. Sure, Trump is a dumb arrogant jerk, but the characters after his hide are trying to steal the remnant shards we still possess of our constitutional "democracy," republic or whatever you might have called it.

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 6:08 pm

This has now moved beyond questions of "the hack" and Russia-gate to the meta issues of who will be indicted next and for what they're moving quickly into "it's not the alleged crime (conspiracy**), it's the cover-up" territory which would suggest Flynn is next which would/could be a game changer.

As Clintoni was not impeached because he had sex with Lewinsky, but that he lied during a deposition . Trump could be brought down if multiple aides are willing to testify that he "participated" in the "alleged conspiracy"

** Mentioned recently was that the word/term "collusion" is not a legal one Collusion is not a crime, almost any communication "might" be collusions -- a conspiracy to commit a crime can be/is (though usually it is the crime that is prosecuted, rather than the conspiracy -- see also terrorism prosecutions based on, for example, a person's preparations to travel to X country to fight for jihad, or various "material support" convictions for piddling "support" , waterproof socks anyone?)

Remember also that it's been floated that the FBI's investigation is winding down in advance of being closed -- and that the congressional investigations will likely be hampered by indictments and the legal advice that will be brought to bear.

I'm rather doubtful that Manafort (savvy businessman) would have involved / intermingled his business dealings with reckless and sleazy Donald Trump even if he did buy a condo in Trump tower.

Manafort was brought in to handle the delegates at the convention, to prevent a revolt or other embarrassment from the Never Trump faction(s). He did that, with his long-standing top echelon GOP ties and god knows what else. I'm relatively doubtful he has any smoking gun to trade in a plea bargain and I suspect he has elite friends and backers who will ensure that he (and family) will be taken care of if he's convicted, and -- given the nature of elite prosecutions -- he may have a conviction reversed on appeal and/or be allowed -- once he has solidly refused to be "turned -- to pay massive fines in exchange for a guilty plea.

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 6:32 pm

note also that as outlined so far, Team Trump never solicited dirt from the Russians -- rather it was either volunteered or dangled wrt the August meeting, possibly as bait in order to "win" a meeting and the offered "gift" of dirt was never either accepted or received

I'm unsure if there is any reality to the implication of some legal responsibility to report such an "offer" of dirt . and yes, the "hypocrisy" of Steele solicitiing and paying for Kremlin dirt may result in another "investigation" again of "collusion"

Anonymot , October 31, 2017 at 6:19 pm

The the U.S. mainstream media opposes Trump, which is very understandable, but it is hard to comprehend why they are so totally unbalanced and unquestioning. Of course, there is a minute number like Fox, but sources that rest on their laurels as center and center left (by US definition) have abandoned any objectivity. Realists are reduced to you and Intercept are all that are left. Even Truthout and RSN, Buzzfeed, and most others act as though Hillary will still be President – or maybe is. I read the Guardia daily, but it just mirrors the NYT. Also Le Monde that is more European centered, but one sees Clintonian America in much of its coverage.

I'm at a loss to understand the why & how the MSM turned to propaganda machines.

Realist , October 31, 2017 at 6:53 pm

I was watching the BBC world news on cable tonight. They are completely in the bag on this rubbish that Putin's Troll factory or somebody (the last of the Bolsheviks, perhaps) posting a piddling number of ads on facebook from allegedly Russian IP addresses (possibly CIA, if you ask me) poisoned the minds of well over a hundred million Americans–probably convincing every one of them to vote for Trump putatively against their self-interests and good judgement. Formerly respectable journalists, IT experts and academics are lending their images and reputations to this idiotic narrative. Apparently, the whole nation got schooled in Putin's treachery before the Congress this afternoon. So, sayeth the expert witnesses. This is Group Think like I've never seen before in my 70 years on this planet. Very distressing that 90+% of Americans can be so mind-controlled and deluded, even those with relevant expertise and an inside track to the facts.

D.H. Fabian , October 31, 2017 at 6:24 pm

Yes, and from the very start, the Clintonites began spinning this situation into the anti-Russian Tale. Most likely, it will be years before the excessive propaganda and counter-propaganda of 2017 is sorted out.

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 7:03 pm

I have to wonder about a Nuland/Kagan Ukranian foundation as I began to wonder in the last few days if the existing (quite likely partisan) investigations of Manafort going back years, were used to piggyback the sliming of Trump last summer the rejoicing when Manafort resigned was rather disproportionate (given he'd only been in the job for 3 months), possibly vindictive (but wrt what?) particularly given the varied Biden and McCain and Podesta interests in that same small Ukrainian pond (Crimea, Crimea, Crimea!!!!!)

Doubt Clinton wrote all those Russian/Trump talking points by herself and the mythos of Putin as militarily aggressive/existential threat also arises and is referred back to the Ukraine (because Syria really isn't some credible base of power/sphere of influence, while the treat to nato countries is "golden" and "evergreen").

Seriously impressive how the wishes of the people of Crimea (and Eastern Ukraine) are discounted, erased ..

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 7:19 pm

Fwiw, my thought at the time, was that Clinton was "priming the pump" (manufacturing consent) for an extremely assertive out-of-the gate foreign policy assault on Russia/Putin (now that pokey cowardly Obama was out of the way)

In any event, yes, Clinton's anti-Putin/Russia campaign and Trump/Russian money ties -- iirc -- began long before the alleged DNC hack piggybacking reweaving the "narrative"?

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 8:01 pm

seriously .honest I have zero Russian "connection" but just discovered Lavrov, per RT, is suggesting that Mueller probe Manifort's Ukraine connections

https://www.rt.com/news/408371-lavrov-ukrainian-trace-us-investigation/

It's always been curious how many of Manifort's "Russian connections" weren't "Russian" Ukraine, Khazikstan, other ex-USSR satellites with oligarchs of their own

It should be noted the Manifort is a despicable human being who (very successfully and for a lot of money) does PR work for "bad people" while the USA officially, successfully, compellingly, does the same for financial and other favors (KSA, Duerte, even Saddam Hussein, the Shah of Iran)

Jessejean , October 31, 2017 at 8:24 pm

Susan–I totally agree with you. I thought the same thing last Nov. and was sure the effing First Woman President would have us in a shooting war with Russia before Christmas if she were elected. I'd love to see Robert The Great do a complete analysis of Russia gate, starting with Lybia, Syria, Ukraine (and Nuland), including the Sons Podesta just to see what the web looks like objectively. Put Killery and Saudi Arabia in the middle of that web and hey presto, we could fire Mueller with no loss of the truth.

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 9:46 pm

Not so funny -- but -- I largely accepted that Hilary Clinton would be the next president that the failure of some upsurge of resistance to Obama suggested that "Democrats" were going to ratify Obama (as devastatingly disappointing as he was) and kick-it-up-a-notch being more interventionalist, more in-your-face aggressive.

Never occurred to me that Sanders was anything more than a sheepdog, keeping those adorably idealistic Obama army "kids" in their blue shirts, keeping them from defecting from the Blue Team.

The lack of polling is becoming conspicuous, imho. Slavoj Zizek has become a punchline (at least in the USA/UK universe) because (imho) he raises uncomfortable issues wrt to reconciling long-standing ideals with realities (political and physical) While "we" have our differences, I am appalled by the wide-spread de-platforming that (unlike Facebook and Twitter demographics) is un-graphed and ignored . that censorship by neglect, indifference, silent lack of regard .. erosion of even the intellectual pretence of curiosity and/or open mindedness.

Lois Gagnon , October 31, 2017 at 7:48 pm

Don't ask me why, but I suspect this insanity is going to drag on for another 3 years. If we live that long. I wouldn't mind if I thought it would keep the insiders from doing their worst damage to us and everyone else on the planet, but I'm sure they'll use the distraction to get away with as much criminal behavior as they can. Collapsing Empire is not a pretty sight.

Susan Sunflower , October 31, 2017 at 8:48 pm

be scared .. from Slate/Dahlia Litwick apparently Manifort and Gates have been denied Attorney Client Privilege (not entirely unprecedented, but shall we say in this case dubious, scary) -- this is a financial crimes case no exigent circumstances, not "criminal" as in "violent criminality" or imminent danger to anyone (I suspect they are "afraid" of being out-lawyered, out-maneuvered)

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/10/why_a_judge_ruled_paul_manafort_isn_t_entitled_to_attorney_client_privilege.html

[Oct 31, 2017] DemocRAT Ezra Klain celebrates Mueller achievements

Notable quotes:
"... At the very least, it seems that they would have to prove that Russia committed some sort of crime, and Trump was somehow complicit in that. Based on what has been publicly revealed, I have doubts that they would be prove anything related to what has been alleged. The more likely outcome, if they're going to get Trump, is that some other unrelated crimes surface during the course of the investigation. Given the scope of his business enterprises, that wouldn't be all that surprising. ..."
Oct 31, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

lyman alpha blob , October 31, 2017 at 6:10 pm

Fun new game created by Ezra Klein –

Two things are true about the indictments unsealed by special counsel Bob Mueller Monday:

-They don't provide a "smoking gun" proving collusion between Donald Trump's operation and Russia.
-They make it almost impossible to believe that there wasn't collusion between Trump's operation and Russia.

The trick is you can replace the first bullet point with anything and it still works if you're a DemocRAT.

Let's try –

They don't provide a smoking gun proving that aliens built the pyramids out of gorgonzola cheese, but they make it almost impossible to believe there wasn't collusion between Trump's operation and Russia.

Fun for the whole family! And way to go Ezra Klein – it's like a new 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon.

voteforno6 , October 31, 2017 at 6:31 pm

I've been wondering – what do they think that they can actually prove in court? What crime(s) do they believe Trump committed? At the very least, it seems that they would have to prove that Russia committed some sort of crime, and Trump was somehow complicit in that. Based on what has been publicly revealed, I have doubts that they would be prove anything related to what has been alleged. The more likely outcome, if they're going to get Trump, is that some other unrelated crimes surface during the course of the investigation. Given the scope of his business enterprises, that wouldn't be all that surprising.

[Oct 31, 2017] That Other Plot -- to Bring Down Trump by Patrick Buchanan

Thus we have Free Beacon neocons, never-Trump Republicans, the Hillary Clinton campaign, the DNC, a British spy and comrades in Russian intelligence, and perhaps the FBI, all working with secret money and seedy individuals to destroy a candidate they could not defeat in a free election.
Notable quotes:
"... What was the FBI's relationship with the British spy who was so wired into Russian intelligence? ..."
"... Thus we have Free Beacon neocons, never-Trump Republicans, the Hillary Clinton campaign, the DNC, a British spy and comrades in Russian intelligence, and perhaps the FBI, all working with secret money and seedy individuals to destroy a candidate they could not defeat in a free election. ..."
Oct 31, 2017 | www.realclearpolitics.com

Well over a year after the FBI began investigating "collusion" between the Trump campaign and Vladimir Putin, Special Counsel Robert Mueller has brought in his first major indictment.

Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort has been charged with a series of crimes dating back years, though none is tied directly to President Donald Trump or 2016.

With a leak to CNN that indictments were coming, Mueller's office stole the weekend headlines. This blanketed the explosive news on a separate front, as the dots began to be connected on a bipartisan plot to bring down Trump that began two years ago.

And like "Murder of the Orient Express," it seems almost everyone on the train had a hand in the plot.

The narrative begins in October 2015.

Then it was that the Washington Free Beacon, a neocon website, engaged a firm of researchers called Fusion GPS to do deep dirt-diving into Trump's personal and professional life -- and take him out.

A spinoff of Bill Kristol's The Weekly Standard, the Beacon is run by his son-in-law. And its Daddy Warbucks is the GOP oligarch and hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer.

From October 2015 to May 2016, Fusion GPS dug up dirt for the neocons and never-Trumpers. By May, however, Trump had routed all rivals and was the certain Republican nominee.

So the Beacon bailed, and Fusion GPS found two new cash cows to finance its dirt-diving -- the DNC and the Clinton campaign.

To keep the sordid business at arm's length, both engaged the party's law firm of Perkins Coie. Paid $12.4 million by the DNC and Clinton campaign, Perkins used part of this cash hoard to pay Fusion GPS.

Here is where it begins to get interesting.

In June 2016, Fusion GPS engaged a British spy, Christopher Steele, who had headed up the Russia desk at MI6, to ferret out any connections between Trump and Russia.

Steele began contacting old acquaintances in the FSB, the Russian intelligence service. And the Russians began to feed him astonishing dirt on Trump that could, if substantiated, kill his candidacy.

Among the allegations was that Trump had consorted with prostitutes at a Moscow hotel, that the Kremlin was blackmailing him, that there was provable collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

In memos from June to October 2016, Steele passed this on to Fusion GPS, which passed it on to major U.S. newspapers. But as the press was unable to verify it, they declined to publish it.

Steele's final product, a 35-page dossier, has been described as full of "unsubstantiated and salacious allegations."

Steele's research, however, had also made its way to James Comey's FBI, which was apparently so taken with it that the bureau considered paying Steele to continue his work. About this "astonishing" development, columnist Byron York of the Washington Examiner quotes Sen. Chuck Grassley:

"The idea that the FBI and associates of the Clinton campaign would pay Mr. Steele to investigate the Republican nominee for president in the run-up to the election raises ... questions about the FBI's independence from politics, as well as the Obama administration's use of law enforcement and intelligence agencies for political ends."

The questions begin to pile up. What was the FBI's relationship with the British spy who was so wired into Russian intelligence?

Did the FBI use the information Steele dug up to expand its own investigation of Russia-Trump "collusion"? Did the FBI pass what Steele unearthed to the White House and the National Security Council?

Did the Obama administration use the information from the Steele dossier to justify unmasking the names of Trump officials that had been picked up on legitimate electronic intercepts?

In testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, Clinton campaign chair John Podesta and DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz claimed they did not know that Perkins Coie had enlisted Fusion GPA or the British spy to dig up dirt on Trump. Yet, when Podesta testified, the lawyer sitting beside him in the committee room was Marc Elias of Perkins Coie, who had engaged Fusion GPS and received the fruits of Steele's undercover work. Here one is tempted to cite Bismarck that, if you wish to enjoy politics or sausages, you should not inquire too closely how they are made.

Thus we have Free Beacon neocons, never-Trump Republicans, the Hillary Clinton campaign, the DNC, a British spy and comrades in Russian intelligence, and perhaps the FBI, all working with secret money and seedy individuals to destroy a candidate they could not defeat in a free election.

If future revelations demonstrate that this is what went down, it is not only the White House that has major problems.

If you wish to know why Americans detest politics and hate the "swamp" that has been made of their capital city, follow this story all the way to its inevitable end. It will be months of unfolding.

The real indictment here is of the American political system, and the true tragedy is the decline of the Old Republic.

[Oct 31, 2017] Tony Podesta stepping down from lobbying giant amid Mueller probe. The threat of serving hard time for failing to disclose foreign lobbying work is rattling Washingtons multi-billion dollar influence industry

Oct 31, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

New Cold War

A sampler of punditry:

"Thus we have Free Beacon neocons, never-Trump Republicans, the Hillary Clinton campaign, the DNC, a British spy and comrades in Russian intelligence, and perhaps the FBI, all working with secret money and seedy individuals to destroy a candidate they could not defeat in a free election" [Patrick Buchanan, Real Clear Politics ].

"It sure looks like there was collusion between the Trump operation and Russia" [Ezra Klein, Vox ]. "Two things are true about the indictments unsealed by special counsel Bob Mueller Monday: They don't provide a "smoking gun" proving collusion between Donald Trump's operation and Russia. They make it almost impossible to believe that there wasn't collusion between Trump's operation and Russia."

"Hillary Clinton Shouldn't Go Away. She Should Embrace Her Role as Trump's Nemesis." [Jeet Heer, The New Republic ]. "With the Mueller investigation now besieging Trump, there's no better time for Clinton to deploy her special gift of enraging Trump. More than any other politician, she can speak to the legitimacy crisis in his government, and the success of her bestselling memoir What Happened proves that there is a vast audience eager to listen." Please kill me now.

"It is surely a scandal, and not just in the political sense, when the former chairman of a presidential campaign is indicted for work related to a corrupt foreign government. At the same time, it's important to remember that Paul Manafort's indictment is not evidence that President Donald Trump or his campaign colluded with Russia to influence the 2016 election" [Editorial Board, Bloomberg ].

* * *

"How Manafort lost $600,000 in a shell company the government now says was used for money laundering" [Francine McKenna, MarketWatch ]. The shell company was Lilred. "Lilred is an investment vehicle that was set up by Manafort to invest in a strategy that involved stripping the interest payments from a group of high-yield Ginnie Mae insured mortgages to create a collateralized mortgage obligation. Investors could buy those CMO securities, on margin, and use the high-yield interest payments to service the debt and capture a positive difference between the interest rates, or spread." They call it an investment vehicle because it's designed to drive off with your money

"Tony Podesta stepping down from lobbying giant amid Mueller probe" [ Politico ] Whoopsie. That was fast.

"Washington's Legions Of Lobbyists See Danger In Special Counsel's Indictment Of Manafort" [ Buzzfeed ]. "The threat of serving hard time for failing to disclose foreign lobbying work is rattling Washington's multi-billion dollar influence industry following Monday's 12-count indictment against Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy, Rick Gates. And although the charges have largely been seen as a blow to the White House, Monday's actions by special prosecutor Robert Mueller also sent shivers down the spines of Washington's lobbyists, both Democrats and Repulicans."

The mysterious (and 30-year-old) Papadopoulos: "[C]ourt documents unsealed by the special counsel's office on Monday show that he was in communication with the highest-ranking officials on the campaign" [ RealClearPolitics ]. "Papadopoulos came to the Trump campaign in March of 2016 with little experience in the foreign policy realm compared to advisers on more traditional campaigns. Trump's unconventional campaign did not attract the high-level foreign policy experts typically drawn to presidential contenders . [T[he lack of a substantial foreign policy team created risks, some that might be coming back to bite him." And: "[I]t's the final footnote of the special counsel's now-unsealed document on Papadopoulos that has all sides interested, and likely concerned: 'Following his arrest, defendant PAPADOPOULOS met with the Government on numerous occasions to provide information and answer questions.'"

Realignment and Legitimacy

"Autopsy: The​ ​Democratic​ ​Party​ ​in​ ​Crisis" (PDF) [ Karen Bernal, Pia Gallegos, Sam McCann, Norman Solomon ]. Fun stuff, especially since the DCCC buried theirs . (This comes from a Nation article , but you might as well just read the real thing.)

[Oct 30, 2017] Honeypot Was The Trump Camp's Meeting With Russian Lawyer All A Clinton Set-Up

Oct 30, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

Oct 30, 2017 9:40 PM 0 SHARES Authored by Tyler O'Neil via PJMedia.ocom,

This week's bombshell - that the DNC and the Hillary Clinton campaign financed former British spy Christopher Steele's salacious dossier allegedly connecting Donald Trump and Russia - may suggest something even more devious. The dossier was compiled by the notorious firm Fusion GPS, which also worked for Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, the very woman who met with Donald Trump Jr. in a meeting deemed pivotal to the case for Trump-Russia "collusion."

The Fusion GPS connection raises a supremely interesting question: Did the Clinton campaign actually orchestrate the meeting between Trump campaign officials and Veselnitskaya? Is the entire Trump-Russia collusion narrative the result of a Clinton set-up?

After PJ Media's Liz Sheld suggested the idea to this reporter, it seemed increasingly plausible. Not only does the timeline work out, but Clinton attacked Trump as Putin's puppet and Clinton's connections to Russia had been powerfully reported in 2015. What better way to distract from Clinton's ties to Russia than proving "collusion" on Trump's part?

When Veselnitskaya met with Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort on June 9, 2016, she pressed them on the adoption issue, part of the Russian efforts to undermine the Magnitsky Act . The act - signed by President Barack Obama in December 2012 - imposed sanctions on individuals and entities responsible for the death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who unearthed massive fraud within the Russian government and was imprisoned, tortured, and killed for it in 2009. Hermitage Capital Management CEO Bill Browder testified that the sanctions "personally" affect Russian President Vladimir Putin's wealth.

Putin retaliated by banning the adoption of Russian orphans by American families. Previously, Russia had allowed Americans to adopt sick Russian children, and they adopted kids suffering with HIV, Down Syndrome, and other ailments. Due to this retaliation for the Magnitsky Act, Browder testified, these sick children now languish in Russian orphanages and many will die before their 18th birthdays.

As it turns out, Veselnitskaya hired Fusion GPS to lobby the U.S. government on this very issue, one extremely pivotal to Putin's monetary interests.

In July, Browder testified that "Veselnitskaya, through Baker Hostetler, hired Glenn Simpson of the firm Fusion GPS to conduct a smear campaign against me and Sergei Magnitsky in advance of congressional hearings on the Global Magnitsky Act." This alleged smear campaign took place in 2014, two years before the presidential election. Through this business, Veselnitskaya made friends with Fusion GPS.

In April 2016, two months before Veselnitskaya's meeting with Trump campaign officials, the law firm Perkins Coie, as part of its representation of the Clinton campaign and the DNC, hired Fusion GPS for research into Trump, The Washington Post revealed this past week. In a letter to Fusion GPS, Perkins Coie general counsel Matthew Gehringer noted that his law firm revealed its role in hiring Fusion GPS in order to help keep Fusion GPS's list of clients confidential. What is the opposition research firm trying to hide?

In March 2016, Fusion GPS approached Perkins Coie to see if it its clients would be interested in paying the firm "to continue research regarding then-presidential candidate Donald Trump." Through Perkins Coie, the DNC and the Clinton campaign paid Fusion GPS to perform research that led to the infamous dossier written by former British spy Christopher Steele.

On Friday, it was revealed that the Washington Free Beacon was the original source paying Fusion GPS to investigate Trump. The conservative news outlet insisted that none of the research it paid for was included in the infamous Steele dossier, however. The Post reported that Fusion GPS hired Steele after the Democratic funding began, supporting the Free Beacon's version of events.

To recap: Veselnitskaya hired Fusion GPS to undermine Magnitsky's reputation in 2014. The Clinton campaign and the DNC hired Fusion GPS to compile the Trump dossier in April 2016. Two months later, Donald Trump Jr. received an email inviting him to meet with Veselnitskaya ostensibly to gather opposition research on Clinton -- but at the meeting Veselnitskaya tried to push the Trump campaign to oppose the Magnitsky Act.

Then, as the DNC and the Clinton campaign pinned the DNC hack to Russia and Trump cited emails leaked by WikiLeaks, Hillary Clinton began attacking Trump as "Putin's puppet." At the third presidential debate, Clinton argued that Putin supported Trump because he "would rather have a puppet as president of the United States."

Clinton never brought up the Trump campaign's meeting with Veselniskaya during the election, but she certainly suggested Trump was in bed with the Russians.

It is plausible that the Clinton campaign and the DNC, working through Fusion GPS, suggested to Veselnitskaya that she should meet with the Trump campaign. This would have given the Democrats a clear link between Trump and the Russians, and it would have given Veselnitskaya an opportunity to further her work on Putin's behalf, with one of the two leading presidential campaigns. Furthermore, Fusion GPS's role as an intermediary would have given both plausible deniability.

According to a recent FEC complaint , the Clinton campaign and the DNC obfuscated their hiring of Fusion GPS by listing payments to the law firm Perkins Coie as being for "legal services." This violated the law, as the money really went to opposition research. The decision to work through Perkins Coie -- and to mislead the FEC about the nature of services -- suggests the Clinton campaign and the DNC were hiding something.

Clinton also would have had an incentive to try and manufacture connections between Trump and Russia. Throughout 2015 and into early 2016, Trump was the Republican frontrunner, and he had praised Putin many times , suggesting he would "get along well" with the Russian president. The Russia angle made sense for Clinton to develop, and it would have been a perfect way to distract from her own troubling Russia connections.

If Clinton wanted to convince Americans that Trump is Putin's real puppet, her campaign would need more evidence than a few positive comments. After all, Trump was not the candidate who helped approve a 2010 deal giving Russian company Rosatom 20 percent of U.S. uranium -- right at the time when that very Russian company was under FBI investigation . The FBI kept the investigation secret, just when it would have been most important.

In 2015, Peter Schweitzer had published the blistering story in The New York Times uncovering Clinton's connections to and benefits from the 2010 Uranium One purchase. Her husband, former President Bill Clinton, had been paid $500,000 for a speech -- at a Russian bank promoting Uranium One stock.

According to an anonymous witness threatened by the Obama administration, the FBI investigation into Rosatom also uncovered documents and an eyewitness account rather inconvenient for the Clintons. This evidence corroborated earlier reports that Russian officials had routed millions of dollars into the U.S. to benefit the Clinton Foundation just as Hillary Clinton served on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which endorsed the Uranium One deal. This past Wednesday night, the Department of Justice finally authorized the informant to disclose his information and documents.

At the same time as the FBI kept its Rosatom investigation secret, the agency acted fast to bust a Russian spy ring because it got too close to Hillary Clinton

All that makes sense, but why try to manufacture connections between Russia and the Trump campaign -- when Trump's campaign chairman Paul Manafort had worked for Ukraine's Party of Regions , a group backed by Putin?

This past week, Special Counsel Robert Mueller announced that his investigation into Manafort had extended to cover Tony Podesta -- a Clinton campaign bundler who co-founded the Podesta Group with his brother, Clinton's campaign manager John Podesta. Both Manafort and Podesta may have violated the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), an allegation PJ Media reported last April . Emphasizing Manafort might have revealed Podesta and his connections to Clinton.

If Clinton secretly orchestrated the meeting between Veselnitskaya and the Trump campaign, why did that news not come up in the campaign?

First, the meeting only lasted about 20 minutes, according to Donald Trump Jr. If the Clinton campaign orchestrated the meeting -- hoping for either proof of Trump-Russia collusion or to start a long-term relationship between Veselnitskaya and the Trump campaign to use as a weapon later -- they would have been disappointed to hear the meeting went nowhere.

Expecting to triumph on November 8, Hillary Clinton might have decided not to release the news of this event, deeming it unnecessary for her victory.

Even so, there is no evidence that the Clinton campaign did actually orchestrate the Veselnitskaya meeting. Questions like this make it very important for the list of Fusion GPS clients to become public. If Fusion GPS was still working for Veselnitskaya, or was in contact with her in the lead-up to the meeting with Trump Jr., that might suggest the entire Trump-Russia "collusion" narrative was created by Democrats or the Clinton campaign.

It is already ironic enough that Robert Mueller, the man leading the investigation into Trump-Russia connections, is the same man who led the FBI when it covered up the investigation into Rosatom right when it was convenient for Hillary Clinton. Unless some very damning evidence finally comes out against Trump, this investigation seems likely to get worse and worse for Clinton and the Democrats.

Bes -> TeethVillage88s , Oct 30, 2017 9:56 PM

the global power structure (USA too) is an orgy of:

honeypots

patsies

smoke

mirrors

crosses

double crosses

double agents

deep throats

and kabuki

-------

proceed with caution

enjoy

J S Bach -> TeethVillage88s , Oct 30, 2017 10:07 PM

Hollywood, with all of its depravity can't write a script with characters more sinister and immoral than the Clintons and their minions.

May this horror movie end soon.

overbet -> J S Bach , Oct 30, 2017 10:09 PM

this sure smells

https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b53883210c395d5d8fd751b216845d208ac...

Manthong -> overbet , Oct 30, 2017 10:15 PM

"Honeypot: Was The Trump Camp's Meeting With Russian Lawyer All A Clinton Set-Up?"

Omigosh .

How could anyone think such deviousness would emanate from the Saint Hillary Congregation and the Democrats?

Bernie will attest to their purity.

Paul Kersey -> TeethVillage88s , Oct 30, 2017 10:00 PM

"Was The Trump Camp's Meeting With Russian Lawyer All A Clinton Set-Up?"

If that empty plus-size pants suit wasn't smart enough to pass the bar exam, she wasn't nearly smart enough to pull something like that off. Podesta is so fucking dumb, that he got nailed by a high school phishing scam, and his brother was already up to his nostrils in Viktor Yanukovych shit, just like Manafort. As for Billy Bob, late stage syphilis has finally taken it's toll his lizard brain. But let's face it, the Trump sons won't be shattering any IQ test records, either. Those idiots set themselves up.

nmewn , Oct 30, 2017 9:50 PM

Why was a DNC operative meeting with Ukrainians, in the Ukrainian embassy , in Washington DC?

Is this "collusion" with a foreign power during an election? ;-)

Sizzurp , Oct 30, 2017 9:58 PM

It almost certainly was all a set-up. Trump's campaign, and later his transition team, was under surveillance by the Obama administration and they needed justification to continue the spying. This whole thing was orchestrated dirty tricks by corrupt Obama and his paid enforcers. Now Mueller is continuing the abuse of power as the media circus laughs and applauds. We have serious problems.

I am a Man I am... , Oct 30, 2017 9:57 PM

Perkins Coie hired Fusion GPS AND Crowdstrike, cyber security firm that claimed Russia hacked DNC servers that FBI didn't give enough of a fuck to look at.

TeethVillage88s , Oct 30, 2017 9:57 PM

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honeypot https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honeypots_in_espionage_fiction https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honeypot_ (computing) https://listverse.com/2016/03/08/10-real-honeypot-operations-that-played... http://foreignpolicy.com/2010/03/12/the-history-of-the-honey-trap/ https://sofrep.com/51201/avoiding-the-honey-pot/ http://searchsecurity.techtarget.com/feature/Honeypot-technology-How-hon... https://www.sans.edu/cyber-research/security-laboratory/article/honeypot... https://www.wired.com/2012/04/anna-chapman-cabinet/ https://www.veteransnewsnow.com/2016/09/11/israeli-black-operations-in-t... https://trapx.com/dynamic-deception-operations-its-not-your-daddys-honey... https://www.computerworld.com/article/2573345/security0/honeypots--the-s... http://berlinstartupjobs.com/operations/coo-honeypot/ https://www.first.org/resources/papers/tc-oct2005/barlow-james-slides.pdf http://www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/Analysis-Hamas-honeypot-opera...

oops wiki shows no results for operation honeymoon... censored!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Family_Jewels_ (Central_Intelligence_Agency)

Chupacabra-322 , Oct 30, 2017 10:02 PM

What people don't understand is, that the Russian PsyOp / False Narrative Script by the Deep State & Pure Evil War Criminal Treasonous Psychopath Hillary Clinton Globalist was the game plan all long.

Win, stolen or lost. They were going & are going "all in" with the PsyOp, Scripted False Narrative of Russia hacking the Elections / Russia / Putin / Trump Propaganda gone full retard via the Deep States Opeatives in the Presstitute Media.

Plausible Deniability is the name of the game. If the Deep State could of pulled off the False Narrative PsyOp of Russia influencing our Elections the Deep State could & will hack into Russia's National Elections next March. Call it pay back.

The Deep State's destabilization campaign in Ukraine especially Crimea was part of the ZioNeoConFascist Agenda to destabilize Russia during their upcoming elections.

Putin countered by expelling all Geroge Sorros NGO's from Russia. However, rest assured those destabilization cells are in place to ready to be activated come Russia's next election cycle.

dwboston , Oct 30, 2017 10:16 PM

I don't think "ironic" is the right word to use for Mueller's involvement in both brooming any investigation of Hillary and Uranium One then and now leading the fake collusion witch humt. I might choose "convenient", "suspicious", or "planned".

beijing expat , Oct 30, 2017 10:17 PM

Clearly there was a criminal conspiracy.

Another point, the last pages of the Pissgate dossier were added after the election. They said Cohen went to Prague to meet with Russian agents about payment to the hackers. This was used as cause for a FISA warrant to spy on Trump. What was McCains involvement, and the FBIs.

[Oct 30, 2017] Could Papadopoulos case be an entrapment ? This "Russian professor" looks exactly like the heroes of Nigerian spam letters

Entrapment is as old as civilization. "In criminal law, entrapment is a practice whereby a law enforcement agent induces a person to commit a criminal offence that the person would have otherwise been unlikely or unwilling to commit. [1] It "is the conception and planning of an offence by an officer, and his procurement of its commission by one who would not have perpetrated it except for the trickery, persuasion or fraud of the officer." [2] "
Previously I thought that members of Hillary entourage were complete idiots both as for computer security and generally security wise. Now it looks like Trump entourage have has the same problem: many of they were idiots.
In "After Snowden" world anybody who wants to communicate with a unknown foreign person via Facebook of Twitter on issues of any political significance is an idiot. Because chances of hoax, provocation of in case of Trump team "false flag operation" are nearly 100%. This way you can implicate anybody in Russian ties: hire a hoaxer and ask him to pretend that he is Russian. To simp0lify the matter ask him to use Skype to communicate with the target. Send a couple of incriminating emails. Any of Nigerian spammers can be used for this purpose. They are already trained. Rinse and repeat.
So how we can be sure that this idiot Papadopoulos was not set up? BTW he ws born in 1987 -- so he just out of the college (graduated in 2009). What does he know about foreign policy?He never has been an ambassador to an important country, words in State Depertment, or servers as a senior fellow in some research institution which study those issues. (he was "unpaid intern" in Hudson institute" in 2011) What foreign policy advisor role for such a guy ? He looks like a huckster to me.
Of cause Kieren McCarth in her joy over the development is unable to contemplate this question.
Notable quotes:
"... Papadopoulos has been assisting Mueller's special inquiry for several months, but word of this cooperation only emerged today when his guilty plea to making false statements to the FBI was unsealed. ..."
"... he used Facebook Messenger and Skype to communicate with a Russian government agent, called "the Professor," who promised to provide damaging information on the Clinton campaign. Emails, no less. ..."
"... the Professor showed interest in defendant PAPADOPOULOS only after learning of his role." ..."
"... And then there is extensive evidence -- confirmed by Papadopoulos -- that he acted as a go-between for the Trump campaign and the Russian government, including being supplied with damaging information on the Clinton campaign. ..."
"... There are also emails from other Trump campaign staff -- so far unnamed -- that show explicit efforts to work with Russians in gathering damaging information on the real-estate tycoon's political rival. In other words, efforts to engage a foreign power to swing a US presidential election. ..."
"... For one, using Facebook to carry out highly dubious and potentially illegal activity is not a good idea. This is a social network that periodically changes account settings to keep up the pretense that it's not gathering and selling every snippet of information it can get out of you. Anything you say on Facebook may go straight down a pipe to the NSA and a database searchable by the FBI. It's called Section 702 . ..."
Oct 30, 2017 | www.theregister.co.uk
Originally from: Manafort, Stone, Trump, Papadopoulos, Kushner, Mueller, Russia All the tech angles in one place • The Register By Kieren McCarthy

Former Trump foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos -- no, not that one -- has been turned by ex-FBI director Robert Mueller as part of the latter's investigation into Trump campaign team members. Mueller is probing allegations of obstruction of justice, money laundering and other financial crimes, and collusion with Russian government agents seeking to meddle with last year's US presidential election.

Papadopoulos has been assisting Mueller's special inquiry for several months, but word of this cooperation only emerged today when his guilty plea to making false statements to the FBI was unsealed.

Coincidentally, Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort surrendered himself this morning to Mueller at his nearest FBI office, as requested, to answer allegations ranging from making false statements to acting as a foreign agent.

Ex-Trump campaign official Rick Gates, also accused of conspiracy and money laundering, handed himself in today, too. The indictment against the pair is here , and both deny any wrongdoing.

Among the wealth of details in Papadopoulos' 14-page statement [PDF] is the fact that he used Facebook Messenger and Skype to communicate with a Russian government agent, called "the Professor," who promised to provide damaging information on the Clinton campaign. Emails, no less.

"This isn't like he [the Professor]'s messaging me while I'm in April with Trump," Papadopoulos told the FBI. "I wasn't even on the Trump team." Except he was on the team in April 2016. The Feds noted in their court paperwork: "Defendant PAPADOPOULOS met the Professor for the first time on or about March 14, 2016, after defendant PAPADOPOULOS had already learned he would be a foreign policy advisor for the Campaign; the Professor showed interest in defendant PAPADOPOULOS only after learning of his role."

And then there is extensive evidence -- confirmed by Papadopoulos -- that he acted as a go-between for the Trump campaign and the Russian government, including being supplied with damaging information on the Clinton campaign.

There are also emails from other Trump campaign staff -- so far unnamed -- that show explicit efforts to work with Russians in gathering damaging information on the real-estate tycoon's political rival. In other words, efforts to engage a foreign power to swing a US presidential election.

But let's take a quick look at Facebook.

For one, using Facebook to carry out highly dubious and potentially illegal activity is not a good idea. This is a social network that periodically changes account settings to keep up the pretense that it's not gathering and selling every snippet of information it can get out of you. Anything you say on Facebook may go straight down a pipe to the NSA and a database searchable by the FBI. It's called Section 702 .

Papadopoulos is obviously not a man well versed in spy craft. Something that becomes more apparent when it's revealed the day after he was pulled in for questioning, he deleted his entire Facebook account and started a new one. He also tried changing his phone number to sidestep the Feds.

You can just imagine Mueller's team at their morning meeting: so how did the Papadopoulos interview go yesterday? Well, this morning he deleted his Facebook account. Great, now we know where to look.
... ... ...

[Oct 30, 2017] Indicting Manafort for acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign government (in this case, Ukraine) probably can be used to a half the Beltway, but never mind by Lambert Strether

Notable quotes:
"... By Lambert Strether of Corrente . ..."
Oct 30, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Originally from: 200PM Water Cooler 10-30-2017 naked capitalism By Lambert Strether of Corrente .

Politics

2017

"Virginia Governor – Gillespie vs. Northam" [ RealClearPolitics ]. The average of all polls: Northam 3.3% (Yesterday: 2.8%). Quinnipiac weighs in, with Northam +17 (!!).

"Sanders, who gained his national following by running for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, has refused to endorse the Democratic candidate, Ralph Northam, a mainstream progressive. This signals the left-winger's determination to set ideological litmus tests for Democrats" [ Bloomberg ]. "Bannon, the former top strategist for President Donald Trump, is on a mission to destroy the Republican Party establishment. In Virginia, he's helped pressure Republican Ed Gillespie, a quintessential establishment figure, to embrace immigrant-bashing and race-baiting."

New Cold War

It's Manafort. And Papadopoulos. Two (2) documents were unsealed: Manafort's indictment, and Papadopoulos's plea deal. Here they are:

1) Manafort: United States of America v. Paul J. Manafort and Richard W. Gates, III ( PDF ). (The PDF, via DK, is a searchable PDF as opposed to a scan.)

2) Papadopoulos: United States of American v. George Papadoplous ( PDF ).

As readers know, I haven't been following the ins and outs of all this with complete attention, but as best I can tell, the Manafort indictment is designed to get Manafort to flip, and the Papadopoulos plea signals the inducement for him to do so.

Taking Manafort first, the indictment looks like an especially florid scheme to evade Federal taxes on consulting fees paid to entities controlled by Manafort by Viktor Yanukovych and his Party of Regions , by laundering it through nominees in Cyprus into real estate (and rugs). There's nothing in the indictment about election "meddling," and the Russians appear only at a second remove (as the ultimate backers of the Party of Regions). The Feds are also indicting Manafort for acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign government (in this case, Ukraine) which would probably apply to half the Beltway, but never mind that.

Papadopoulos is juicier, from the Russki standpoint. Here is the salient paragraph, in which Papadopoulos is charged with making false statements (rather a warning shot to the rest of the players in this affair):

Now, the details of the Papadopoulos story are almost clownishly stupid -- a Russian "professor," Putin's "niece," Papadopoulos communicating with his Russki interlocutor via Skype (!) -- so it's hard to know how serious an attempt this was. And if what the Russian professor says is true (we don't know that), we don't know which email is at issue. Still, some Russians could have been doing some "meddling," and some person in the Trump campaign knew about it. Who else knew? Manafort? During the four months he headed Trump's campaign? Presumably, Mueller can follow up the food chain. All this is, of course, very far from Clinton's original claim that Trump is a Russian "puppet," a claim which moreover had and has the ultimate goal of treating as treason advocacy for a policy that is surely not prima facie crazed: That is, the idea that a Clintonite cold war with Russia, or a hot proxy war in the Ukraine, might not be the best idea in the world. Nevertheless, this was not a good day for the Trump administration.

"How to Interpret Robert Mueller's Charges Against Paul Manafort in the Russia Investigation" [ WIRED ]. This is excellent (and recommended by emptywheel , who I would link to except I'm getting CloudFlare errors from her site). This:

For all the talk of Russian collusion, there isn't really a federal crime that matches what the press, critics, and Capitol Hill lawmakers have been calling collusion, a word that refers legally to a narrow segment of antitrust law. And there's almost zero chance anyone will be charged with treason, a charge that's only available to use against enemies in a declared war.

In other words, we can forget about the frothing and stamping of the parties which I can say relieves me no end. And if readers with experience in complex Federal criminal prosecutions want to chime in, great! Musical interlude .

UPDATE Reading the Manafort indictment again, I noticed several mentions of the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine, for whom Manafort was a lobbyist. It turns out they gave the Podesta Group $900,000 over two years (including 2012?). "However, the source of the funding remains unclear since ECFMU listed its budget for the financial year ending in November 2012 as only 10,000 euros." Here's a handy chart of the ECMU's connections, from Muckety .

Always good to see bipartisanship!

MyLessThanPrimeBeef , October 30, 2017 at 4:40 pm

From Corey Lewandowski, via the Guardian:

If the public reports are true, and there was a time where Paul Manafort was under a FISA [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978] warrant before coming to the Trump campaign, why is it the FBI never reached out to me as the campaign manager, never reached out to Donald Trump and said "look, you might want to pause for a second and take a look before you bring this guy on board as a volunteer to hunt delegates for you."

They never did that. He was under a FISA warrant, supposedly, both before and after his tenure at the campaign and the FBI never notified the leading presidential candidate for a major Republican Party race? Never notified him of a potential problem? This is a problem with the FBI if you ask me.

I don't know if the FBI was required to do so.

Should they have informed a presidential candidate?

IowanX , October 30, 2017 at 7:53 pm

Hoping Tony Podesta loses a shoe close to whenever Midnight hits as this goes forward. I'm told John is "ok". Tony, not so much. But the Podesta firm has always been thought of as a Democratic shop, so the "both sides do it meme" may actually be proven out We'll see how this rolls. That fact that this is all Ukraine right now makes me think we'll *never* figure out what really happened. Which I guess (JFK ongoing redactions) goes without saying.

Byron the Light Bulb , October 30, 2017 at 2:54 pm

So, the question, begs, "Does Manafort as a bag man earn his fees?"
Because the reviews from his previous clients seem mixed, at best. Asking for a friend.

George Phillies , October 30, 2017 at 3:46 pm

" treason, a charge that's only available to use against enemies in a declared war " Ummh, no. Contemplate the Jefferson Administration.

With respect to the alleged thousands of emails, several choices here

Some people will believe anything. Papadopolous was hoaxed.
DNC emails, some to be obtained later
The Podesta emails

Emails lifted from the Clinton server, raising that issue from the dead.

other

Vatch , October 30, 2017 at 4:05 pm

From Article III, Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution:

1: Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

Giving aid and comfort to the nation's enemies does not require a declaration of war. It's also disturbingly vague.

MyLessThanPrimeBeef , October 30, 2017 at 4:33 pm

From US Code:

Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 807; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, § 330016(2)(J), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2148.)

What are their enemies?

North Koreans?

todde , October 30, 2017 at 5:09 pm

there hasn't been a case that I am aware of that didn't involve taking arms up against the United States (Brown or the Whiskey Rebellion) or aiding a country we were at war with (Tokyo rose).

No one is going to get convicted of treason, conspiracy against the United States is not treason, and probably stems from his tax evasion charge.

Vatch , October 30, 2017 at 6:09 pm

Oddly, there are also state laws against treason. Either the Illinois or the Missouri law was used against Joseph Smith, the founder of the Mormon denomination.

todde , October 30, 2017 at 6:43 pm

I believe that was Missouri.

The good people of Illinois just ran him out of the state if my class field trip memory serves me still.

DJG , October 30, 2017 at 4:11 pm

The McGuffin in the Papadopolous indictment is the Clinton e-mail messages. And what if they emerge?

The article from Wired is enlightening because it takes a broad view of the FBI's goals and the slowness of the U.S. criminal process. Emptywheel seems to think that it is all over, although she admits that Papadopolous is a plain idiot. I fear that she is moving too fast. But then the Watergate burglars were idiots, too.

All in all, I'd say let the indictments fall down like rain.

But I also recall that the Nixon saga was saved by clever old foxes like Sam Ervin and Judge John Sirica, both of whom were highly underestimated by those in the know, you know. Yet I don't see a Sam Ervin on the horizon. Enjoy the continuing constitutional crisis.

Byron the Light Bulb , October 30, 2017 at 5:40 pm

Mueller: Y'all know me. Know how I earn a livin'. I'll catch this bird for you, but it ain't gonna be easy. Bad fish! Not like going down to the pond and chasing bluegills and tommycods. This shark, swallow ya whole. Little shakin', little tenderizin', down you go. And we gotta do it quick, that'll bring back the tourists, that'll put all your businesses on a payin' basis.
–The campaign doorkeeper is next. The son-in-law with no power. Just for being mishpokhe, poor sob.

John D , October 30, 2017 at 8:25 pm

"All over"?

So there's no hope that, just like a scene from the Old Republic of Livy's first decade, Mueller will round things up with the case for his own indictment ?

allan , October 30, 2017 at 6:50 pm

Fair and balanced:

The veteran judge former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his associate Rick Gates will appear in front of Monday afternoon has presided over a list of big-name defendants and has experienced the criminal justice system firsthand -- when her son was convicted of dealing heroin.

The case will then be handed over to an Obama-appointed judge who donated $1,000 to former President Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign.

Find it yourself. Just Google "Roger Ailes casting couch News Corp phone hacking".

Heliopause , October 30, 2017 at 7:11 pm

"we don't know which email is at issue."

The logical inference is that "the Professor" was claiming to have the lost private server emails, since that's what was on everybody's minds at the time. Unfortunately, the internet is abuzz with wild speculation at the moment that this somehow proves foreknowledge of the DNC leaks, but as the quoted passage shows there is nothing in the language of the plea to support that conclusion. Nevertheless, expect it to be somberly reported across mainstream platforms as the "smoking gun" that it isn't.

Papadopoulos does not currently stand accused of doing anything wrong other than lying to the FBI. He might have a more interesting story to tell but it's just speculation at this point. Reading through the plea it looks like this may be nothing more than a dumbass who got taken in by a couple of charlatans and then lied about it, Sure, he may have some deeper dirt, or not, I guess we'll find out.

Dave's Not Here , October 30, 2017 at 8:12 pm

Isn't it ironic that the Ukraine pops up here, aka the USGOV's favorite Ukronazis and erstwhile cat's paw vs Russia? It's as stupid as blaming Iran (Shia) for Al Qaeda and ISIS (Sunni). I look forward to seeing the convolutions that the MSM will go through to prove Ukraine = Russia. Hmmm, what other US politicians are known for their ties to the Ukraine?

Watt4Bob , October 30, 2017 at 8:15 pm

So, fill in the blank with any one of 'our' elected representatives in D.C.

"_____________ faces a long list of charges that includes conspiracy against the United States, conspiracy to launder money, false statements, acting as an unregistered agent as a foreign principal, making misleading statements in violation of the Foreign Agent Registration Act, and seven counts of failing to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts. That's a dozen in all.

Name one, come on, name a member of the House, or Senate who hasn't made them selves relatively rich off lying and laundering, and influence peddling?

The total number of our elected 'leaders' that pass the smell test could fit in your average mini van.

My Mom used to ask, "If everyone jumped off the bridge, would you do it?"

Anyone who knows me even the least bit knows I'm not making excuses for Trump Inc., I'm just emphasizing how truly f*cked we are as concerns the mean level of ethics extant in our capital city.

[Oct 30, 2017] Lavrentiy Beria principle in "show me a man and I will find you a crime" in action

Finally reports about three successes in Mueller fishing expedition. If charges are proved, Manafort is yet another corrupt player in Washington DC. Who milked the best friend of Joe Biden. But the problem is that probably half of Washington lobbyists can be indicted on similar charges.
Oct 30, 2017 | www.theguardian.com

After the indictment of Manafort and Gates was revealed on Monday morning, Trump tweeted : "Sorry, but this is years ago, before Paul Manafort was part of the Trump campaign. But why aren't Crooked Hillary & the Dems the focus?????"

The president added: "...Also, there is NO COLLUSION!"

Later, the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, played down the connection between the three men and the Trump campaign. She said of Manafort and Gates's indictment: "Today's announcement has nothing to do with the president, presidential campaigns or any campaign activity."

Sanders played down the role of Manafort, who joined the Trump campaign in March 2017 as convention manager, focusing on winning delegates at the 2016 Republican convention, and was promoted to campaign manager in June 2016 before resigning in August over his links to Ukraine. She said: "Paul Manafort was brought in to lead the delegate process, which he did, and was dismissed not too long after that."

She also insisted Papadopoulos's lies to the FBI about his contacts with Russia on behalf of the Trump campaign had "nothing to do with the activities of the campaign", and repeatedly dismissed Papadopoulos as "a volunteer member on an advisory council".

... ... ...

The charges allege the two men worked extensively for political figures and parties in Ukraine and laundered millions of dollars in payment for that work by channelling it through a web of companies, mostly in the US and Cyprus. They are accused of constructing elaborate schemes to hide their earnings from the US government, and failing to register the foreign interests for which they were lobbying.

The indictment alleges $75m in payments flowed through offshore accounts, of which Manafort laundered more than $18m to buy property, goods and services in the US, hiding the income from the government. It says Gates transferred $3m from the offshore accounts to other accounts he controlled.
... ... ...

Yanukovych, whose rule was marked by rampant corruption in his inner circle, fled to Russia during the Maidan revolution in February 2014. In August last year, an alleged "black ledger" surfaced in Kiev that appeared to show millions of dollars of under-the-table payments to numerous Yanukovych allies, including Manafort.

Ukraine's National Anticorruption Bureau posted 22 payments to Manafort between 2007 and 2012 with various vague descriptions such as "sociology" or "services". The payments totalled $12.7m. Manafort said he never received any illegal payments but the scandal prompted him to resign from Trump's campaign.

... ... ...

Although Manafort did not formally assume control of the Trump campaign until 20 June, when campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was fired, Lewandowski said after his ejection: "Paul Manafort has been in operational control of the campaign since 7 April. That's a fact."

Manafort also played the decisive role in ensuring that Trump picked the Indiana governor, Mike Pence, to be his running mate.

[Oct 30, 2017] The decision to press charges against Manafort and one of his aides might be intended to distract attention from the revelations and to regain control of the Russiagate narrative, which has been increasingly falling apart. What reinforces this suspicion is that news of the indictment was leaked disgracefully to the media over the weekend even though the indictment had been sealed by a Federal Judge

Oct 30, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 | Oct 30, 2017 3:23:15 PM | 17

Anon @6--

Mercouris weighs in on the Manafort indictment, wherein I agree with his initial assessment:

"It comes after what was in all other respects a disastrous two weeks for the true believers in the Russiagate conspiracy with the revelation that the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign financed the 'research' which resulted in the Trump Dossier, and with mounting claims that (as I had previously suspected) the now notorious meeting between Donald Trump Junior and the Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya was indeed a sting set up by Fusion GPS, the intermediary company used by the DNC and the Hillary Clinton campaign to fund the Trump Dossier.

"In light of this there has to be some suspicion that the decision to press charges against Manafort and one of his aides now was intended at least in part to distract attention from the revelations and to regain control of the Russiagate narrative, which has been increasingly falling apart.

"What reinforces this suspicion is that news of the indictment was leaked – disgracefully – to the media over the weekend even though the indictment had been sealed by a Federal Judge." http://theduran.com/manafort-indictment-muellers-first-last-shot/

All the while Mueller spins his wheels, the really big criminals in this fiasco remain the Clintons, Obamas, and staff that worked abetting their crimes.

[Oct 30, 2017] Paul Manafort Indicted On 12 Counts In Mueller Probe, Surrenders To FBI Zero Hedge

Might be a wwya put swipe under the table Steele dociier. Also what is interesting is that Bill and Hillary Clinton, The Bonnie and Clyde of US polit , walk free, Manafort, being a small fish in a large pond of international corruption, was caught in the net and is under arrest... They want him to talk. Manafort will be under a lot of pressure to produce evidence of any Trump/Putin connection.
Oct 30, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

The special counsel's office considers Manafort a flight risk, and lawyers in Mueller's office argued before Judge Deborah Robinson on Monday afternoon, citing the seriousness of the charges and the extent of Manafort's ties abroad. The FBI took possession of Manafort's passport yesterday. In a statement to reporters following the hearing, Manafort's lawyer, Kevin Downing, called the charges against his client "ridiculous."

"There is no evidence that Mr. Manafort or the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government," Downing told reporters after Manafort's court appearance.

"Mr. Manafort represented pro-European Union campaigns for the Ukrainians. And in that, he was seeking to further democracy, and to help the Ukraine come closer to the United States and the EU."

"The claim that maintaining offshore accounts to bring all your funds into the United States as a scheme to conceal from the United States government is ridiculous," he continued.

Downing called Mueller's prosecution of Manafort using the Foreign Agents Registration Act "a very novel theory," point out that the government has only brought charges under the law six times since 1966.

According to the Hill , Manafort retained Downing, a former Department of Justice official, in August. Downing is known for his work representing clients facing complex financial investigations.

* * *

Update: Democrat Adam Schiff, the ranking member on the House Intelligence committee, said the indictments open up "new lines of inquiry" in the Russia probe, even after reports surfaced earlier this week that many Republican members of Schiff's committee are trying to wind it down.

Today's indictments of Manafort and Gates, and Papadopoulos' guilty plea are key developments in Russia probe. Here's why: pic.twitter.com/ELNg3LPoe3

-- Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) October 30, 2017

Update: Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders has confirmed that the White House has no intention of firing Special Counsel Robert Mueller. She added that the role of George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy adviser during the campaign who pleaded guilty to obstruction earlier this month, was "extremely limited."

Sanders reiterated that the Manafort indictment has "nothing to do with us," noting that his alleged criminal activities took place before he joined the campaign. When asked if the president now regrets hiring Manafort, she said she hadn't asked him about his feelings on the matter. She also played down Papadopoulos's involvement with the campaign was minimal, saying he met with a group of foreign policy advisers one time, and had his named included on a list of advisers given to the Washington Post.

Sanders added that Manafort was hired to lead the campaign's delegate push ahead of the convention, and was let go shortly after.

IH8OBAMA -> CuttingEdge , Oct 30, 2017 12:29 PM

Did the FBI screw up in their search of Manafort's home?

"...we were immediately drawn to the revelation that evidence was collected that may not have been covered by the warrant. That's a serious development, and one that Manafort's attorneys will no doubt seize upon. But, is it necessarily illegal? Did the agents do anything wrong? It's not clear. It certainly could raise some serious constitutional issues that could taint the investigation."

https://lawnewz.com/high-profile/mueller-teams-apparent-mistake-could-re...

IH8OBAMA -> 3LockBox , Oct 30, 2017 10:09 AM

Manafort was told not too long ago that he was going to be indicted. This is really nothing new and has zero involvement with Trump.

Let's get to the bottom of the Hillary, Obama, Lynch, Holder, IRS and other illegalities. Bring those indictments.

boattrash -> chunga , Oct 30, 2017 10:29 AM

Keep this fucker in mind too...Neil Kornze. Below is an excerpt from his Bio...

Before coming the Bureau of Land Management, Kornze worked as a Senior Advisor to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada. In his work for Senator Reid, which spanned from early 2003 to early 2011, he worked on a variety of public lands issues, including renewable energy development, mining, water, outdoor recreation, rural development, and wildlife. Kornze has also served as an international election observer in Macedonia, the Ukraine, and Georgia and is co-author of an article in The Oxford Companion to American Law.

Tangled webs and pieces of shit. Ya think Mueller will be charging this bastard? No, me either..

chunga -> boattrash , Oct 30, 2017 10:44 AM

Mueller won't, my opinion on him is he's nothing more than a hatchet man to chop Trump. Sessions should though. Some people still like the guy but I just don't trust him with the shit he's done so far, like coming out and praising this Myhre. I know you read Redoubt News but I wish more people did because they're doing a good job.

US Attorney Myhre Sinks Deep in the Swamp

https://redoubtnews.com/2017/10/us-attorney-myhre-sinks-deep-swamp/

In a surprising ruling, Judge Navarro allowed disgraced BLM agent Dan Love to be questioned for a full day on Monday. Love was obviously upset at the officials in the * DOJ overriding his authority as the Incident Commander.

*bold emphasis mine

Lumberjack -> chunga , Oct 30, 2017 11:10 AM

"The primary responsibility of the special counsel" is " to investigate Russian interference with the 2016 presidential election "

Furthermore, Mannafort and even Trump himself had no idea he would be running for president 5 years ago.

Um, the Special Council is way off target...by miles and years. Mannafort et.al. should get what they deserve but the collusion is all Podesta/Hillary/Fusion GPS/Crowdstrike et.al..

The Special Council needs to get crackin...and back on track

Cloud9.5 -> 3LockBox , Oct 30, 2017 11:46 AM

A pardon shuts down Mueller's investigation. This is a witch hunt and like all witch hunts guilt is ascribed to the suspect by simply being named. So there is no justice here. This is all partisan politics. The simple fact is that there are so many laws on the books that honest people unwittingly break the law every day. http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2013/10/you-break-the-law-every-day-without-even-knowing-it.html

This is a labyrinth that has no end. This is a fishing expedition and Muller is casting a net far and wide and he will find a number of people who inadvertently broke the law. People like Martha Stewart come to mind. James B. Comey burned Martha Stewart at the stake of self-righteousness for lying to the FBI, but this same moral crusader found no wrong doing in Hillary Clinton's email scandal. Clearly as far as the FBI is concerned, Martha was a real paragon of evil while Hillary is the most altruistic person on the planet. Either the Republicans get behind Trump and pull the trigger on the Clinton crime syndicate or they lose the next election.

Creative_Destruct -> Gaius Frakkin' Baltar , Oct 30, 2017 10:13 AM

" In August 2016, Manafort's connections to former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his Party of Regions drew national attention in the USA, where it was reported that Manafort may have illegally received $12.7 million in off-the-books funds from the Party of Regions. [29] On August 17, 2016, Donald Trump received his first security briefing. [30] Also, on August 17, 2016, the New York Times reported on an internal staff memorandum from Manafort stating that Manafort would "remain the campaign chairman and chief strategist, providing the big-picture, long-range campaign vision". [31] However, two days later, Trump announced his acceptance of Manafort's resignation from the campaign after Stephen Bannon and Kellyanne Conway took on senior leadership roles within that campaign. [32] [33] "

So a scumbag lobbyist got caught laundering money over many years BEFORE (and continuing during and apparently unrelated to) Trump's campaign... and then exited the campaign. Unless there is direct evidence of the Trump campaign using Manafort as a conduit for collusion with the Russians (and I know of no evidence for that) this is irrelevant to charges of Trump campaign Russian collusion.

But those facts will NOT be emphasized by the MSM.

AND speculation will persist that Mueller will use his Manafort leverage to drop more shoes...for YEARS.

chestergimli -> Creative_Destruct , Oct 30, 2017 10:26 AM

I just wonder if this little charade of Mueller's isn't revenge for the fact that Yanukovich turned on the US and sided with Russia. Boy the deep state and the Pentagon sure must have wanted Crimea really bad. Manafort seems to be the point guy.

L Bean -> chestergimli , Oct 30, 2017 10:40 AM

BINGO.

CONCEPTPOLITICO -> chestergimli , Oct 30, 2017 1:32 PM

Less the point guy and more the scapegoat. TPTB are pissed off at Lil Yanu for turning coat on them and siding with Putin and they are pissed at Trump for getting elected. So they figure they can try to ameliorate their frustration at these two disses with one scapegoat. Ala Manafort. Look up Manaforts history. He has been doing this slimly kind of lobbyist for 3rd world and former Soviet satellite state strong men for three decades and for that same period of time he has not been paying his taxes on there earnings (i.e. money laundering). But so has the likes of the Podesta Brothers, Clinton, Pat Robertson and the like. Unfortunetely for Manafort he step into the scapegoat pit for as the TPTB was eager to display its anger throgh a ritual cutting of a political head sacrifice when he stepped in to help Trump's campaign gather delegates.

Giant Meteor -> Creative_Destruct , Oct 30, 2017 10:54 AM

Manafort is a string, to be pulled ..

However, what is evident, or what should become evident, there are king makers, and there are bag men, and they are employed by ALL swamp creatures with equal zeal. The point here is, this shit goes way beyond what is stated, as always. These snakes slither in the same swamp, and not one among them has clean hands ...

Not one ..

Manafort, Podesta, Bush, Obama, Clinton, Trump ...

So for all these dirty little charades, these stage props of "justice", the "collusion" has been a collusion, and direct assault against the very interests of the American people, for many, many moons ..

Teja -> Creative_Destruct , Oct 30, 2017 12:51 PM

Yanukovych was democratically elected. He would be deeply shocked that he worked together with a "scumbag lobbyist". Same for Trump, who would never have assumed Manaford had a shady history. Never. Who could have known this? Not Nobody! Not No How!

/s

No Time for Fishing -> Gaius Frakkin' Baltar , Oct 30, 2017 10:29 AM

The answer here is not everyone else does it why single out him, but instead time for partisan Mueller's team to start investigating all the Republican Swamp rats and hold them all to the same standards, except for those members of Mueller's team starting with Mueller who are guilty themselves. Appoint a second equally viscous Republican Partison to investigate and prosecute Hillary, Bill, Obama, Holder, DWS, Pelosi and the rest of the Democrat Swamp Rats. We will probably need to appoint some additonal Federal Judges because the courts are going to be very busy and swift justice is the best justice.

WillyGroper -> Gaius Frakkin' Baltar , Oct 30, 2017 11:18 AM

absolutely!

and speaking of looting Ukraine...nooodullman?

dopey me, doesn't apply to duals.

Michigander -> CuttingEdge , Oct 30, 2017 9:48 AM

I listen to the opposition (PBS) in the morning for an hour while showering and getting to work. Still talking Trump Russia collusion every other story and not a fucking word about Hildebeasts and Muellers Uranium dealings.

L Bean -> Haus-Targaryen , Oct 30, 2017 10:51 AM

All of that is just red meat for the plebs. It's not hard to spend that much on fine rugs. And every fine home in Georgetown and the UES is stuffed to the gills with them.

They also get quite a laugh getting Joe Schmoe worked up about how much someone's haircut cost. Nearly a million in clothes? A vintage Patek Phillipe watch and 2 tailored suits and you're there. Or for the woman, a fews enormous pearl necklaces and a Chanel suit.

CuttingEdge -> Michigander , Oct 30, 2017 10:09 AM

The collusion by the MSM to keep this story from the public conscious is truly stunning. Any MSM source other than Fox on this issue in the USA and you are a mushroom.

And international. Nothing in the UK in the past ten days since the dossier funding and the Uranium-1 informant (who is going to personally buttfuck Mueller from every angle) stories broke. The Telegraph's* last Hillary story was a fucking HRC through the ages fashion piece.

And all the usual insidious cunts like Podesta, HRC and DWS sharing a houseboat on a river in Egypt.

*I would personally like to inform any journo working for the DT that you are a spineless worm. A piece of morally corrupted parasitic shit. Every single motherfucking one of you. Scum assisting in making 1984 a reality.

Kayman -> CuttingEdge , Oct 30, 2017 10:11 AM

No Grand Jury to look at the Clintons ! No Grand Jury indictment for the Podestas ! Mueller is doing his job- destroying evidence.

Endgame Napoleon -> El Vaquero , Oct 30, 2017 11:34 AM

Taxpayers need to cover the cost of security for Swampians in an era of increased publicity and fast-paced communications. But Swampians of all types need to be banned from lobbying and other money-making activities in foreign countries related to their time in office, such as profitable not for profits with political donors in foreign countries, sales of bomb-making material to foreign countries and accepting six-figure-to-multi-million-dollar speechmaking fees from foreign interests that are interwoven with governments. These are opportunities spawned by their time in office. All they have to do to make it legal is to disclose it; it is just fine for government officials and their associates to make enormous amounts of money off of catering to foreign interests unless they fail to disclose.

Short of a sea change in the way money is made due to automation, globalism is going to keep sinking The Republic, with elite working families saying they are doing all of it for average working families in America. Sell it with a fake-feminist, mommy-baby-concern theme, and you can do any nefarious thing you want, whether in high or low places. Visit a local, $10-per-hour, crony-mom call center or a momma-gang corporate back office for the rougher, downscale version.

I am beginning to root for the robots. It is probably the only way we will see any real change. Advances in technology in the pre-automation age let these elites operate businesses and other institutions more easily around the globe to the detriment of The Republic and their own country's widespread prosperity.

Maybe, a global, robotic workforce will return us to elected governments, where the voters' interests are actually represented, rather than lobbyist-fed, elected representatives representing the interests of American and foreign elites who are invested in near-slave production around the globe, so-called emerging markets, war clean-up or lucrative NGOs.

Maybe, we we will see less lucrative-for-elites intervention in foreign countries under the brand of helping mommies and babies around the globe that is government/corporate-financed, with many of the financiers being global dictators.

Maybe, further advances in technology will nullify these globalist pathways to riches for political elites, making it easier for the Founders' values to resurface. When robots are doing most of the work, these near-slave labor and consumer markets abroad will be less tantalizing, leaving only things like land, uranium deposits, oil and other geographic gems to attract elite attention away from building up the USA.

pods -> Sean7k , Oct 30, 2017 10:19 AM

Wells Fargo was opening up accounts for people without knowledge. Punishment? A fine, and state we won't do it again.

This indictment was top story on the radio on the way into work. I was hoping to hear about the actual shocking story (Uranium one deal) but crickets.

There is no hope for actual justice. Just more vendettas by warring sides.

I say fuck it, burn the whole thing to the ground. It would be cheaper.

pods

two hoots -> Sean7k , Oct 30, 2017 10:50 AM

Where was I? I plead dementia.

I'm generic and any corruption that gets weeded out is fine by me. Yes, there is plenty more but I will take whatever, from wherever as long as it is rooted out.

It must be autumn harverst time for sexual perverts and corrupt assholes. They seem to be all coming out/forced out? Put them all in the same cells.

Chupacabra-322 -> gmrpeabody , Oct 30, 2017 9:14 AM

ATTN: Forward the following everyone & their mothers.

Published on Oct 24, 2017FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds exposes Special Counsel Robert Mueller's conflict of interest in pursuing General Michael Flynn's case due to his direct involvement as former FBI Director and his role in covering up and protecting Gulen Networks' criminal operations within the United States, and demands that he steps down.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=DvFCAIRkvWU&sns=tw

xavi1951 -> JRobby , Oct 30, 2017 9:48 AM

Mueller was supposed to investigate Russian Collusion. Instead, he and his team of Hillary supporters, looked at everything that everyone on the Trump team did at any time, even before they were connected to Trump. The whole thing has set a new precident for Special Counsels. Don't investigate a crime, find a crime, any crime.

I think they should be turned loose on Congress. There would have to be special elections across the country to fill the vacant seats.

xavi1951 -> JRobby , Oct 30, 2017 9:48 AM

Mueller was supposed to investigate Russian Collusion. Instead, he and his team of Hillary supporters, looked at everything that everyone on the Trump team did at any time, even before they were connected to Trump. The whole thing has set a new precident for Special Counsels. Don't investigate a crime, find a crime, any crime.

I think they should be turned loose on Congress. There would have to be special elections across the country to fill the vacant seats.

lester1 , Oct 30, 2017 8:20 AM

It's Manafort for not filing his taxes properly. But no charges related to "Russia election meddling". 6 months into this fake investigation Mueller has got nothing related to that..

Mueller is a deep state swamp creature and dishonest. He will now push Manafort to roll on the President and manufacture a bogus crime. Watch.

Meanwhile, Hillary skates despite an mountain of evidence of actual crimes!

justin423 -> lester1 , Oct 30, 2017 8:30 AM

They are using the other crimes to get Manafort to flip.

duh.

Gates is the real prize here. Look at his biography. He is the collusion link. I'll bet he has an intreresting story to tell.

66Mustanggirl , Oct 30, 2017 8:18 AM

This is priceless. So the Buzzfeed scoop was actually legit? Manafort and thirteen "suspicious" wire transfers? That were already looked at by the F.B.I.?? Five YEARS ago??? THIS is the BOMBSHELL BREAKING NEWS coming from the great Russian Collusion investigation??? I thought for sure the story was either a diversion or a bad joke. Dear lord. To call this farce of an investigation a dog and pony show would be to cast dispersions upon all the legitimate dog and pony shows throughout history. This is like a bad SNL skit. From the 90's. With Jim Breuer as Goat Boy.

Dems.....you have been soooooo played! L.O.L. But PLEASE....please, please PLEASE.....keep waiting for that silver bullet that will take down Trump to magically appear. That will ensure you are COMPLETELY irrelevant in 2018.

Hammer of Light , Oct 30, 2017 8:19 AM

How about we pin the execution on the Mueller for his cover up role in 9/11? He was acting director of the inside deep state attack on the US that the FBI was clearly involved with as well as the CIA and co.

Mueller belongs with his Bush and Cheney cohorts and all who were absolutely involved in the 3 towers demolition destruction and mass murder of Americans.

The US no longer exists people, the government is completely over run and if you think you still have a country... find yourself laughing at yourself in the mirror!

It's all a circus of madness now! Babylon will laughably fall, it's already begun.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idsxgLjGXGI&ytbChannel=Thrifty032781

This 16 second clip says it all about our US Special Prosecutors and those in control of all of DC.

Hundreds of millions to have a 9/11 actor serve justice in finding a Russian collusion where NONE exists. I hope Manafort shoves their noses in a big steaming pile of Dick Cheney's steaming shit.

Everybodys All ... , Oct 30, 2017 8:22 AM

The real action is just beginning because they (Mueller and his party) think Manafort will "flip" on Trump in order to get out of his problem with this indictment. Of course every little retard liberal will think this is about Russian influence on the election even though it clearly will not be. Half of this country is living in an alternate reality and that will not end well for all of us.

jamesmmu , Oct 30, 2017 8:25 AM

According to the left, Trump is about to go to prison. According to the right, Hillary is about to go to prison. I feel like very few are aware of both possibilities.

http://investmentwatchblog.com/according-to-the-left-trump-is-about-to-g...

Smilygladhands , Oct 30, 2017 8:26 AM

I see news networks saying Manafort could turn on others to implicate them. However it seems to me, if that was the case, wouldnt they have already offered that deal to him before charging him?

[Oct 29, 2017] Details Of Suspicious Manafort Wire Transfers Leaked From FBI Probe

Manafort dealing with Yanukovich were long before 2016 elections. So this is king of "overextension" of Muller mandate (which was never completely defined anyway to allow digging durt)
Notable quotes:
"... Just in case there's someone here who's relatively new to the party, please be advised that Viktor Yanukovych was an American lackey whose campaign was orchestrated and staffed by ex-Clinton staffers. ..."
"... Obviously Manafort failed to establish a charitable foundation to launder funds or label these funds "speaking fees" before receiving them. It is good to know that 23 attorneys and millions of dollars in a tax-payer-funded investigation have discovered potential tax violations that may have shorted the U.S. Treasury of a few hundred thousand dollars. ..."
Oct 29, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
As speculation mounts that Paul Manafort might be the target of the sealed indictments reportedly approved by Special Counsel Robert Mueller's grand jury, Buzzfeed is reporting new details of Mueller's probe into Manafort, seemingly a hint that he will in fact be one of, if not the only, target taken into custody tomorrow.

The FBI's investigation of Donald Trump's former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, includes a keen focus on a series of suspicious wire transfers in which offshore companies linked to Manafort moved more than $3 million all over the globe between 2012 and 2013.Much of the money came into the United States.

HockeyFool -> Theta_Burn , Oct 29, 2017 3:51 PM

So back in 2012 Manafort was working for the Podesta group. Not Trump. And that assclown Robert Muller has spent far more than $3 million on this political witch hunt. What a fucking joke. Is that the best they got?

MisterMousePotato -> HockeyFool , Oct 29, 2017 5:16 PM

" ... notoriously corrupt former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, who was supported by the Kremlin ... ."

Just in case there's someone here who's relatively new to the party, please be advised that Viktor Yanukovych was an American lackey whose campaign was orchestrated and staffed by ex-Clinton staffers.

Unfortunately for Messr. Yanukovych and the people of Ukaraine, he decided not to do America's bidding after all, but instead to sensibly seek trade relations with Russia, which made sense financially, geographically, and socially.

At which point (need I say?), he fell out of favor with his American backers and was replaced in an American-funded coup by American backed Nazis.

nachochan -> MisterMousePotato , Oct 29, 2017 6:23 PM

Good point. Also please be advised that Manafort was likely a Clinton plant in the Trump camp for reasons yet to be seen.

AlexCharting -> HockeyFool , Oct 29, 2017 5:55 PM

Just watch "Get me Roger Stone". Manafort was a major swamp monster

Thomas Paine -> HockeyFool , Oct 29, 2017 7:12 PM

Manafort is too close to the Podesta Group. Mueller is despicable and desperate...now to bait a trap for the President. Kushner, a couple of russian flunkirs...and daddy's girl are the best cheese.

nmewn -> Thomas Paine , Oct 29, 2017 8:23 PM

Yeah, same ole shit, bring an indictment against someone for something that happened YEARS BEFORE the 2016 election (which is not within the scope of Grand Inquisitor Muellers purview) in the hopes he can get Manafort to lie/impugn or otherwise implicate Trump on "Russian collusion". So, they got nuffin and this proves it.

Time for Mueller to be fired.

Or better yet , put the hapless Mueller's sorry ass on the stand and question him about why he stopped investigating the Uranium One deal after getting some low-grade actors and what exactly were the circumstances of him being used as "a bagman" for stolen uranium ;-)

AlaricBalth -> Theta_Burn , Oct 29, 2017 4:14 PM

Tony Podesta and Paul Manefort had close ties. This rabbit hole runs deep and wide, and will prove that the concept of an American bilateral political system is a false narrative designed to divide and rule.

"The Podesta Group was one of several firms that worked on a Manafort-led campaign for a nonprofit called the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine (ECMU). The campaign promoted Ukraine's image in the West and was reportedly backed by the Party of Regions, a pro-Russian political party in Ukraine that was previously led by former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych"

Creative_Destruct -> AlaricBalth , Oct 29, 2017 6:12 PM

BLOW BACK onto the Dems and Clintonistas.... let's hope. AND the entirety of Congress, and ALL the Ukranian meddlers if all the suspicious transfers are investigated.

land_of_the_few -> Creative_Destruct , Oct 29, 2017 7:10 PM

Absolutely, if they are interested in 2016 US election meddling by Ukrainians, then there is no point looking at Yanukovych or the formerly ruling Party of Regions. Long gone by then, banned from Parliament by their political opponents.

dead hobo -> So Close , Oct 29, 2017 2:44 PM

If after 5 months this is all they have ... a 4 year old wire transfer for something ... thw WSJ will print on Tuesday "IS THAT ALL YOU HAVE???" Expect Mueller crucifiction shortly afterward.

BlindMonkey -> dead hobo , Oct 29, 2017 3:05 PM

If you gave Vickie "Cookie" Nuland a dollar for every transfer looting the Ukrainian treasury, she would be a rich woman.

espirit -> TahoeBilly2012 , Oct 29, 2017 3:48 PM

Manafort is the poptop on the can of suspicious transfer worms about to be opened. 3 mil is chicken feed, but the precedence is priceless. Lots of loose bowels tomorrow. lol

Paul Kersey -> dead hobo , Oct 29, 2017 3:16 PM

It hardly makes sense to investigate incidents between 2012 and 2013, in an investigation focusing on the year 2016. However, there are some other possibilities. If they know they have Manafort nailed for these charges, this could give Muelller leverage to make a deal with Manafort for dirty info he may have on Trump.

Trump, of course, could pardon Manafort, but, as the article stated, the State of NY is also going after Manafort. Trump can't pardon a state case. Additionally, NY State is also in discovery for the Trump emoluments case with Judge George Daniels (Obama appointee), and Trump will be unable to pardon any possible witnesses or alleged co-defendants (friends and family).

No question about it, this is a fishing expedition, and the Special Prosecutor is sending his fleet of fishing trawlers from sea to shining sea.

Bay of Pigs -> Kayman , Oct 29, 2017 3:13 PM

Yes. Manafort is the distraction and the fall guy for those two whether he committed a money laundering crime or not.

This is all to hide the treasonous crimes of HRC, Podesta, Lynch, Comey, etc...because they all lead back to the DOJ and FBI.

Bay of Pigs -> Kayman , Oct 29, 2017 3:13 PM

Yes. Manafort is the distraction and the fall guy for those two whether he committed a money laundering crime or not.

This is all to hide the treasonous crimes of HRC, Podesta, Lynch, Comey, etc...because they all lead back to the DOJ and FBI.

RumpleShitzkin -> curbjob , Oct 29, 2017 4:01 PM

The same fuckers sitting on a copy of Anthony's laptop? NY AG's are chickenshit. This is all pure chickenshit.

AurorusBorealus , Oct 29, 2017 4:10 PM

Obviously Manafort failed to establish a charitable foundation to launder funds or label these funds "speaking fees" before receiving them. It is good to know that 23 attorneys and millions of dollars in a tax-payer-funded investigation have discovered potential tax violations that may have shorted the U.S. Treasury of a few hundred thousand dollars.

Anunnaki , Oct 29, 2017 7:14 PM

Manafort, Flynn, Don Jr, Jared Kushner. All going to be indicted

[Oct 29, 2017] The Russiagate Scandal Descends into Total Absurdity by Alexander Mercouris

Notable quotes:
"... Since then there has been nothing, a clear sign that the search of Manafort's house has come up with nothing, and that the pressure to get Manafort to talk by dangling threats of indictment in front of him have resulted in nothing. ..."
Oct 14, 2017 | ronpaulinstitute.org
Even as the Trump administration disintegrates – with the President publicly quarrelling with his Secretary of State, and his Chief of Staff forced to deny he is about to resign – the scandal which more than anything else has defined this Presidency has disintegrated into total lunacy.

Consider these facts:

1) The Mueller investigation

Just a few weeks ago the media was full of reports of how Special Counsel Mueller's investigation was "closing in" on the President and his campaign team. The focus of media interest was on an early morning search in July of the house of Paul Manafort, the campaign professional who at one time acted as the Trump campaign's chairman, with lurid headlines that he was about to be indicted, though it was never made clear for what.

Since then there has been nothing, a clear sign that the search of Manafort's house has come up with nothing, and that the pressure to get Manafort to talk by dangling threats of indictment in front of him have resulted in nothing.

In all other respects a curtain of silence has fallen on Mueller's investigation, a strong sign that after its failure to "break" Manafort it no longer has a clear strategy of what to do.

... ... ...

Reprinted with permission from The Duran .

[Oct 28, 2017] Analysis 5 Possible Outcomes of First Mueller Indictments by John T. Bennett

BTW this is yet another leak. Now about grand jury deliberations. And of cause it comes from CNN
What is interesting is that in view of troubles for Hillary with DNC financing of Steele dossier it looks like the deep state switched to the counterattack mode. And Mueller task was and is to dig dirt, that's why 2013 events are now coming to the focus. How they are related to Presidential elections is unclear.
But fishing expeditions against officials are typically successful. As Lavrentiy Beria used to say "Show Me The Man, And I'll Show You The Crime"
Notable quotes:
"... "I'd like to see it end. Look, the whole Russian thing was an excuse (by the Democrats)," he said. "So that was just an excuse for the Democrats losing an election that, frankly, they have a big advantage in the Electoral College. ... So there has been absolutely no collusion. ... They ought to get to the end of it because I think the American public is sick of it." ..."
"... (Note: White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her top two deputies were asked to respond to the CNN report. None of the senior White House officials responded by time of publication.) ..."
Oct 28, 2017 | www.rollcall.com

The uncharacteristically quiet day at the White House was upended Friday evening by a report that the first indictments in the Justice Department's Russia probe are imminent.

A Washington, D.C., federal grand jury has approved a set of initial charges stemming from the Robert S. Mueller III-led investigation into Russia's meddling into the 2016 U.S. presidential election. CNN was the first to report that the former FBI director turned special counsel could take the first individuals into custody as soon as Monday.

While all indications are that President Donald Trump has yet to be interviewed by Mueller, there's a list of his top 2016 campaign aides, current and former White House aides and longtime confidants who could be rounded up by Mueller's team early next week.

Here are five [possible] indictments and related outcomes that are possible then:

Paul Manafort is indicted. We know that the former Trump campaign chairman has plenty of ties to Russia and other former clients in the region, including former senior Ukrainian leaders.

Most recently, reports surfaced of alleged business dealings totaling $60 million over the past decade between Manafort and Oleg Deripaska, a Russian billionaire with close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Manafort worked for Deripaska from 2005 to 2009, The Associated Press reported.

Mueller has reportedly warned Manafort -- who is said to have supplied the Putin-connected Deripaska with briefings on the 2016 campaign -- that he likely would be indicted.

Michael Flynn is indicted. The retired Army three-star general was once a well-respected military intelligence officer. He rose through the ranks to lead the Pentagon's top espionage entity, the Defense Intelligence Agency. Then, former aides and confidants have told NPR and other outlets, something changed.

Flynn became enamored with the kind of conservative conspiracy theories that helped power Trump to the White House. The longtime soldier, who had gone into the consulting world after being fired from the DIA by President Barack Obama , became a leading national security and foreign policy adviser to candidate Trump.

But Flynn brought to the campaign a list of questionable decisions, many involving his ties to Russian officials, as a general turned consultant. Flynn served just 24 days as Trump's first White House national security adviser before being fired for misleading Vice President Mike Pence .

House Democrats have pressed for their Republican counterparts to subpoena the White House for documents they allege will show Flynn's "egregious conflicts of interest" due to his business dealings with foreign governments. One is Turkey. Another is Russia.

"We believe this paper trail must be pursued to answer the gravest question of all: Did Gen. Flynn seek to change the course of our country's national security to benefit the same private interests he previously promoted, whether by advising President Trump, interacting with foreign officials, or influencing other members of the Trump administration?" House Oversight ranking member Elijah E. Cummings wrote in a recent letter to panel Chairman Trey Gowdy that featured nearly 20 other Democratic signatures.

Carter Page is indicted. The Trump-connected energy consultant came under scrutiny in 2016 for alleged questionable ties to Putin's government while he was part of the Trump campaign.

Though Page has denied any nefarious links to Russian officials, he has informed the Senate Intelligence Committee that he plans to plead the Fifth if called to testify in that panel's Russia probe. He is slated to appear before the House Intelligence Committee next week but has given no indication if he will be cooperative in that investigation.

The long shots

Jared Kushner or Donald Trump Jr. is indicted. The latter is the president's eldest son and the former is his son-in-law and a senior White House adviser. Both were present during a June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with a Russian lawyer who allegedly came with dirt on Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton .

After nearly three hours of testimony before Senate Intelligence staffers on July 24, Kushner stood outside the White House and denied colluding with Russian officials during the 2016 campaign, saying all of his actions were both legal and proper.

Trump's son-in-law defended himself during rare public remarks, saying: " I did not collude with Russia, nor do I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so ."

"I had no improper contacts" during the campaign and transition period, Kushner said, adding, "I have not relied on Russian funds for my business."

He has said he left the Trump Tower meeting with the Kremlin-linked lawyer after concluding she had nothing of value for his father-in-law's campaign.

Steven Hall, the CIA's former chief of Russia operations, on Friday took to Twitter to summarize what might have Trump Jr. in legal hot water when it comes to that June 2016 meeting: "Don Jr took a mtg to get info Russians wanted to give."

But an email exchange surfaced this summer with a former Russian business partner of his father that shows Trump Jr. enthusiastically accepting the man's offer to pass the alleged Kremlin-provided dirt on Clinton to the Trump campaign.

"If it's what you say I love it especially later in the summer," Trump Jr. wrote during the email exchange with Rob Goldstone, a British-born entertainment publicist who met his father when he was trying to do business in Russia. Their email exchange began on June 3, 2016, about a month and a half before Trump accepted the Republican presidential nomination.

If Mueller is targeting the commander in chief, going after his son or son-in-law this early would be a way of getting Trump's attention.

Trump fires Mueller. Remember, Trump already ousted FBI Director James B. Comey , who has said the president asked him to drop the investigation into Flynn.

"No, not at all," Trump told reporters during an impromptu Oct. 16 Rose Garden press conference when asked if he was considering firing Mueller from the special counsel post.

But that was before the president, who values and rewards loyalty, was facing the first wave of indictments in the Russia probe. And Trump made his disgust clear that day about the ongoing DOJ investigation.

"I'd like to see it end. Look, the whole Russian thing was an excuse (by the Democrats)," he said. "So that was just an excuse for the Democrats losing an election that, frankly, they have a big advantage in the Electoral College. ... So there has been absolutely no collusion. ... They ought to get to the end of it because I think the American public is sick of it."

There is a modern precedent, though controversial and presidency-ending, for such a move.

The modern standard bearer is Richard Nixon, the president whom Trump's critics often cite when pointing to his rhetoric and missteps. The so-called Saturday Night Massacre in 1973 went down after Nixon's insistence that the special prosecutor investigating the Watergate cover-up be fired and ended with the top two Justice Department officials quitting. Nixon eventually resigned in 1974 after the House Judiciary Committee reported articles of impeachment but before the full House could vote.

(Note: White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her top two deputies were asked to respond to the CNN report. None of the senior White House officials responded by time of publication.)

[Oct 28, 2017] After revelation on Steele dossier Clinton clan decided to couterattack

Notable quotes:
"... Mueller is authorized to investigate "any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation," according to Rosenstein's order. ..."
"... The special counsel's investigation has focused on potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, as well as obstruction of justice by the President, who might have tried to impede the investigation. CNN reported that investigators are scrutinizing Trump and his associates' financial ties to Russia. ..."
Oct 28, 2017 | www.cnn.com

Original title Exclusive First charges filed in Mueller investigation - CNNPolitics

Washington (CNN) A federal grand jury in Washington on Friday approved the first charges in the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller, according to sources briefed on the matter.

The charges are still sealed under orders from a federal judge. Plans were prepared Friday for anyone charged to be taken into custody as soon as Monday, the sources said. It is unclear what the charges are. A spokesman for the special counsel's office declined to comment. The White House also had no comment, a senior administration official said Saturday morning. Mueller was appointed in May to lead the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Under the regulations governing special counsel investigations, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who has oversight over the Russia investigation, would have been made aware of any charges before they were taken before the grand jury for approval, according to people familiar with the matter. Little chance Congress can kill Mueller's funding On Friday, top lawyers who are helping to lead the Mueller probe, including veteran prosecutor Andrew Weissmann, were seen entering the court room at the DC federal court where the grand jury meets to hear testimony in the Russia investigation. Reporters present saw a flurry of activity at the grand jury room, but officials made no announcements. Shortly after President Donald Trump abruptly fired then-FBI Director James Comey, Rosenstein appointed Mueller as special counsel. Mueller took the reins of a federal investigation that Comey first opened in July 2016 in the middle of the presidential campaign. Mueller is authorized to investigate "any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation," according to Rosenstein's order. The special counsel's investigation has focused on potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, as well as obstruction of justice by the President, who might have tried to impede the investigation. CNN reported that investigators are scrutinizing Trump and his associates' financial ties to Russia. Mueller's team has also examined foreign lobbying conducted by former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and others. His team has issued subpoenas for documents and testimony to a handful of figures, including some people close to Manafort, and others involved in the Trump Tower meeting between Russians and campaign officials. Last year, the Comey-led investigation secured approval from the secret court that oversees the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to monitor the communications of Manafort, as well as former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, as part of the investigation into Russian meddling. In addition to Mueller's probe, three committees on Capitol Hill are conducting their own investigations.

CNN's Marshall Cohen, Mary Kay Mallonee, Laura Robinson and Ryan Nobles contributed to this report.

[Oct 28, 2017] Mueller Files First Charges Over Russia The Daily Caller

Oct 28, 2017 | dailycaller.com

CNN reported Friday night that Mueller has filed charges in sealed indictments. It is currently not known what the charges are or who they have been filed against, but CNN reported that multiple people could be facing charges.

Those affected by the indictments reportedly may be taken into custody by as early as Monday.

The news comes as a number of Republicans have been skeptical of Mueller's ability to be impartial in the investigation. Rep. Trent Franks of Arizona told Fox News Friday that "the federal code could not be clearer – Mueller is compromised by his apparent conflict of interest in being close with James Comey."

The indictments could affect former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort. In September, a report from the New York Times alleged that Mueller told Manafort that he would be indicted. However, there is no indication Manafort is involved yet.

[Oct 25, 2017] Why the FBI wiretap on former Donald Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort is a big deal by Randall D. Eliason

Neocons still dream of Trump impeachment. Neutering him is not enough... the number of potentially illegal wiretaps of Trump associates suggests that threr was a plan to derail plan in three letter agencies headquarters (with blessing of Obama). Plan of interfere with the US election to be exact.
Notable quotes:
"... Reports that the FBI wiretapped former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort are a further sign of the seriousness of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's investigation. But there's still a great deal we don't know about the implications, if any, for the broader inquiry into possible Russian ties to the Trump campaign. ..."
"... The other import of this news involves the possible implications if Manafort is charged. The New York Times reported Monday that when Manafort's home was searched in July, investigators told him he should expect to be indicted. ..."
"... A typical white-collar investigation often proceeds by building cases against lower-level participants in a scheme -- the little fish -- and then persuading them to cooperate in the investigation of the bigger fish. Trump and his associates therefore may have reason to be concerned about what Manafort could tell investigators, if he were indicted and chose to cooperate. ..."
"... Again, much of this is speculation. Due to grand jury secrecy and the secrecy surrounding the FISA process, we don't know many of the details. And given the typical pace of these investigations, whatever happens likely will not happen quickly. ..."
Sep 19, 2017 | washingtonpost.com

Then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort at the Republican National Convention. (Matt Rourke/Associated Press)

Reports that the FBI wiretapped former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort are a further sign of the seriousness of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's investigation. But there's still a great deal we don't know about the implications, if any, for the broader inquiry into possible Russian ties to the Trump campaign.

CNN reported Monday night that the FBI obtained a warrant to listen in on Manafort's phone calls back in 2014. The warrant was part of an investigation into U.S. firms that may have performed undisclosed work for the Ukrainian government. The surveillance reportedly lapsed for a time but was begun again last year when the FBI learned about possible ties between Russian operatives and Trump associates.

This news is a big deal primarily because of what it takes to obtain such a wiretap order. The warrant reportedly was issued under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. A FISA warrant requires investigators to demonstrate to the FISA court that there is probable cause to believe the target may be acting as an unlawful foreign agent.

When news broke last month that Mueller was using a grand jury to conduct his investigation, many reported it with unnecessary breathlessness. Although a grand jury investigation is certainly significant, a prosecutor does not need court approval or a finding of probable cause to issue a grand jury subpoena, and Mueller's use of a grand jury was not unexpected .

A FISA warrant is another matter. It means investigators have demonstrated probable cause to an independent judicial authority. Obtaining a warrant actually says much more about the strength of the underlying allegations than issuing a grand jury subpoena.

That's also why the search warrant executed at Manafort's home in July was such a significant step in the investigation. Unlike a grand jury subpoena, the search warrant required Mueller's team to demonstrate to a judge that a crime probably had been committed.

But it's important not to get too far in front of the story. The FBI surveillance of Manafort reportedly began in 2014, long before he was working as Trump's campaign manager. So the initial allegations, at least, appear to have involved potential crimes having nothing to do with the Trump campaign. And most or all of the surveillance apparently took place before Mueller was even appointed and was not at his direction.

Mueller's involvement now does suggest that the current focus relates to Manafort's role in the Trump campaign. But we don't know exactly how, if at all, any alleged crimes by Manafort relate to his work in that role. And we don't know whether any other individuals involved in the campaign are potentially implicated.

We also don't know what evidence was obtained as a result of the surveillance. The fact that warrants were issued does not mean any evidence of criminal conduct was actually found.

The other import of this news involves the possible implications if Manafort is charged. The New York Times reported Monday that when Manafort's home was searched in July, investigators told him he should expect to be indicted. Even if Mueller were to indict Manafort for crimes not directly related to the Trump campaign, it would be a significant development. A typical white-collar investigation often proceeds by building cases against lower-level participants in a scheme -- the little fish -- and then persuading them to cooperate in the investigation of the bigger fish. Trump and his associates therefore may have reason to be concerned about what Manafort could tell investigators, if he were indicted and chose to cooperate.

Again, much of this is speculation. Due to grand jury secrecy and the secrecy surrounding the FISA process, we don't know many of the details. And given the typical pace of these investigations, whatever happens likely will not happen quickly.

But news of the FISA surveillance is the latest evidence that Mueller's investigation is serious, aggressive and will be with us for some time.

Randall D. Eliason teaches white-collar criminal law at George Washington University Law School.

[Sep 24, 2017] They only picked Manaforts lock as a professional courtesy; thousands of average Americans have been awakened to their doors being smashed in, a couple flash-bangs tossed in, dogs being shot, etc. As Trump might have tweeted before the Deep State gained control of him, Sad!

Sep 24, 2017 | www.unz.com

The Alarmist, September 23, 2017 at 8:27 am GMT

" pick their locks and force entry to their bedrooms in predawn mist as they did to Paul Manafort. This Gestapo-style terror knocked the wind out of Trump's sails."

Wasn't the Gestapo known for at least knocking on the door in the middle of the night before dragging their quarry to the building that no-one stops to watch? NKVD too, now that I think about it. They only picked Manafort's lock as a professional courtesy; thousands of average Americans have been awakened to their doors being smashed in, a couple flash-bangs tossed in, dogs being shot, etc. As Trump might have tweeted before the Deep State gained control of him, "Sad!"

Bannon was right to some extent that there is no military solution to this the piece he was missing was the qualifier, " for sane people who have a conscience."

The fact that we repeatedly use the starvation of millions of innocent civilians in undeclared wars on their leaders shows the lack of conscience on the part of ours, because that route is more disingenuous to our values than making outright war against their nations, albeit not by much. I'm not qualified to render a diagnosis of insanity, but I think I have enough information to inform my opinion.

[Sep 20, 2017] Manafort News a Blockbuster or Nothingburger

To what extent Natalia Veselnitskaya represented Russian state and to what extent interests of certain Russian oligarchs is unclear. The obvious guess is that she did not. She is an oligarchs lawyer. But she could pretend that he did.
Notable quotes:
"... On the night of the election, most anchors reacted in shock. Rachel Maddow appeared aghast. They were stunned at their own failure to predict this outcome and were obliged to seek excuses for the unexpected, unfortunate outcome. The Comey announcement was of course the first explanation deployed, but soon a far more useful one appeared: Russia had rigged the election by providing stolen DNC emails to Wikileaks, using them to discredit Hillary. (It's rarely mentioned how, precisely, they had done that, by showing that the DNC under Debbie Wasserman Schultz, had rigged the primaries against Bernie Sanders.) ..."
"... Obama requested a quick intelligence report, to justify immediate harsh sanctions. He got it, expelled over 700 Russian diplomats, and closed down consulates and recreational facilities owned by the Russian state. These follow the sanctions applied in 2014 in response to events in Ukraine, which caused Russia to retaliate, among other things, by ending the program through which Americans adopt Russian children. ..."
"... News anchors keep referrin