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Special Prosecutor Mueller and his fishing expedition

Show me the man and I’ll find you the crime ~ Lavrentiy Beria

News Russiagate -- a color revolution against Trump Recommended Links Appointment of a Special Prosecutor gambit National Security State The problem of control of intelligence services in democratic societies Coordinated set of leaks as a color revolution tool Trump vs. Deep State Wiretaps of Trump and his associates during Presidential elections
Strzokgate Steele dossier Brennan elections machinations "Seventeen agencies" memo about Russian influence on elections Appointment of a Special Prosecutor gambit Michael Flynn Anti Trump Hysteria MSM as attack dogs of color revolution Rosenstein
Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Amorality and criminality of neoliberal elite  Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners" Control of the MSM during color revolution is like air superiority in the war Rosenstein and appointment of the special prosecutor DNC and Podesta emails leak: blaming Vladimir Putin Hillary Clinton email scandal History of American False Flag Operations
Corporate Media: Journalism In the Service of the Powerful Few Color revolutions Frustrated underachievers NGOs as braintrust of color revolutions The Real War on Reality Media as a weapon of mass deception Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Two Party System as polyarchy Neoliberalism as Trotskyism for the rich
US and British media are servants of security apparatus MSM as fake news industry Media-Military-Industrial Complex Neoconservatism New American Militarism Bernie Sanders betrayal of his supporters Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Hypocrisy of British ruling elite Elite Theory And the Revolt of the Elite
Control of the MSM during color revolution is like air superiority in the war The Deep State The Iron Law of Oligarchy Principal-agent problem Pope Francis on danger of neoliberalism Militarism and reckless jingoism of the US neoliberal elite Skeptic Quotations Politically Incorrect Humor Hypocrisy and Pseudo-democracy

Prosecutors are often in error, but never in doubt

Never underestimate the joy people derive from hearing something they already know. ~Enrico Fermi

When asked what he meant by a miracle: Oh, anything with a probability of less than 20%. ~Enrico Fermi

This witch hunt is modeled after Ken Starr prosecution of Bill Clinton and based on a very fuzzy mandate which is a feature not a bug as it allows "bait and switch" during investigation. Appointment of Mueller was the final move in the gambit which started with Steele dossier, and involves Strzok, 17 agencies memo, wiretapping of Trump team, Comey dismissal (sacrificial pawn), his leaks, and, finally Rosenstein appointment of Mueller

I realize that Clinton wing of Democratic Party (soft neoliberals) and their supporters which include a part of intelligence agencies (especially FBI and CIA), Wall Street, a large part of Silicon valley and most MSM  hat Trump.

But Mueller Russiagate witch hunt is suspicious for one simple reason: no intelligent person would assume that Deep State would allow any politician who are not "vetted" as for foreign and domestic policies to be on iether  party ticket. That includes both Trump and Sanders ( Hillary was the establishment candidate by definition).  So Putin as pretty gifted politician would not play the game in which you can only lose supporting one candidate over another. Let's it be purely domestic circus is much more reasonable attitude.  The only other reasonable explanation is the revenge for the USA interference into 2012 Russian Presidential elections. But this is not the right time, as Russia is still pretty weak after carnage and economic rape of 1990th, and as French say " the revenge is a dish that is better served cold."

But this consideration can't explain why the Deep State went to such length as to launch "color revolution" against Trump administration of which Mueller investigation is the most prominent example (along with Steele dossier, 17 agencies memo and Strzokgate -- swiping Hillary "emailgate" dirt under the carpet).  why they deemed Trump to be so dangerous to gp to such an extraordinary step. Or they were drunk with their own impunity ?

Few people read (and no major MSM for example reported such an interesting quote from 17 intelligence agencies memo, which explsidly state that  they just assessed this possibility of Russian interference (whether they were drunk or not (at Brennan expence) is not mentioned  at all ;-):

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.

That sentence is the core to proper understand Russia-gate and Muller investigation. It defines the latter as a color revolution maneuver  designed to depose Trump and defines Rosenstein as the forth member of the "gang of four" ( Comey, McCabe, Strzok and Rosenstein) hell-bent on removing Trump.  Pretty Machiavellian if you ask me. There were lots of claims, assertions and judgments but no proof at all that any of the alleged Russian influence on elections really happened to warrant opening of this investigation (which is required for such things as appointment of the Special Prosecutor).

They might hate Donald Trump so much for several (and different for various factions) reasons (skeletons in the closet; MIC profits, continuation of globalization, to name a few). What unite them is a strong  believe that any pretext is justified in taking him down, even if it put in negarive light the USA on international arena. AS victoria Nuland  famously said "F*ck EU" ;-)  That's why Clinton Democrats (aka DemoRats) joined efforts with the neoconservatives in the Republican Party to take Trump down. That's why war-mongering against Russia is now established policy for both parties and actually a test for any political commentator who tried to get to any of major MSM. In other words Democratic party now is just the second War Party (as was evident from Hillary campaign) and anti-war left completely disappeared from the USA political landscape. 

Many people who detest Trump also view Russiagate positivly as the most effective path to achieve Trump’s impeachment, so this desirable goal in which "ends justifies the means"  which makes this investigation somewhat similar to Ukrainian "EuroMaydan" charges of corruption, a part of color revolution effort by intelligence agencies and controlled by them MSM.   Moreover the atmosphere in the USA is already poisoned and the majority of people believe that Russia interfered in elections.  In other words Iraq yellowcake story was played on unsuspecting American public again and with the same resounding success.  

But to me it look like Trump surrendered after just 100 days of anti-Russian smear campaign launched by neocons. So why they still  want to finish him like poor colonel Kaddafi?  That's an interesting question. So it must be more on the plate then just forcing Trump to abandon his election promises in foreign policy (which he already did); there might be some dangerous skeletons in the closet revealing of which the previous administration and their factions in intelligence  services the are afraid to death.

Because their action is as close to sedition as one  can get. In other words they went va bank (a common expression among Russian and German speakers. Va bank means to put everything at risk in order to win. As a result you would win everything or lose everything; similar US term might be "all in").  

In any case now two-third or more of US population is brainwashed into adamantly anti-Russian mindset, increasing the risk of the major war

At the foundation of Mueller fishing expedition is so called Steele dossier. The key in understanding Steele dossier is to view it as in integral part of Russiagate plot to remove Trump, an interesting twist of "Color revolutions" methods. See Steele dossier. It has a very interesting chronology and is closely connected with  Strzok-gate

Similarly Trump wanted to reach some level of detente  with Russia rightly considering the level of hostility achieved under Obama dangerous and counterproductive (to the extent that Obama might be controlled by Brennan it might be not Obama personal fought).  In this sense he also crossed the line (with the only difference that he did it during he election campaign) and at this point all power of neocons and neolib including their factions in intelligence agencies was unleashed for his removal. That's why Steele dossier was created and advertized: as part of anti-Trump coup d'état by the neocons, Clinton neoliberals and parts of the US intelligence services.  In both case the interests of the USA and national security suffers. In a way both neocons and neoliberals  are elements of foreign influence that do not care much about ordinary Americans.

From the beginning it was a set up to find dirt on Trump campaign insiders and if possible to topple Donald Trump’s presidential aspirations. It was actually pretty elegant gambit: after Attorney general recluse himself from Russian probe, Rob Rosenstein jumped into action first recommended firing Comey and then on the basis of this decition by Trump appointed the special prosecutor -- Comey friend and mentor Mueller. Whether firing Comey was a trap set up for Trump (and this is quite probably as Trump can be easily played by appealing to his vanity), or he just make the decision with bad timing (day 1 of his Presidency would be much more appropriate)  or not is immaterial.

turbojarhead -> loveyajimbo , Dec 10, 2017 2:37 PM

They played Sessions like a violin. Sessions recluses himself for a bullcrap Kisnyak speech, where he did not even meet him. Rosenstein then recommends Trump fire Comey -- who wanted to be fired so they would appoint a special prosecutor -- which Rosenstein does -- Mueller, to the acclamation of ALL of Con and the Senate -- including Republicans.

When Trump tries to get out of the trap by leaking he is thinking about firing Sessions, Lispin Lindsey goes on television to say that will not be allowed too happen. If he fires Sessions, Congress would not approve ANY of Trump's picks for DOJ-leaving Rosenstein in charge anyway.

Trump was pissed because they removed his only defender from Mueller -- the head of the DOJ. He knew it was a setup, so went ballistic when he found out about Sessions recusing.

Before and after the 2016 election Trump was under tack from intelligence  agencies. And the list includes not only obvious suspects in CIA and NSA, but also FBI (via liaison with CIA, see Strzokgate) as well as a several senior officials in Obama's Justice Department (Loretta Lynch, Sally Yates, Bruce Ohr), as well as National security advisor Susan Rise and UN ambassador Samantha Power (both were engaged in so called "unmasking" campaign).  to say nothing about Obama (who has high personal animosity to both Trump and Putin) who fueled Russiagate histeria by his expulsion of 35 Russian  diplomats on December 30, 2017, when he was already "lame duck".

Among the players that promoted Steele dossier and used it for "color revolution" against Trump Davis Stockman mentioned (The Russiagate Witch-Hunt Stockman Names Names In The Deep State's Insurance Policy )

Of course, this list is incomplete. CIA, FBI, State Department and Department of Justice all have their strong factions of Clinton loyalists, neocons and globalists.  Add to this large, dominant part of MSM, both newspapers, TV channels and major web sites.  So the critical mass for launching color revolution was present and they just needed a trigger, which was Steele dossier and 17 agencies memo. At this point the color revolution against Trump was launched. And while this operation had many moving parts and alternating players, the mission to unseat Trump never changed. And it remains ongoing with all hoes currently put on the result of 2018 elections (if Democrats regain majority Mueller can definitely to do more and House intelligence committee investigation, which is most damaging to Mueller can be shut). Efforts to find dirt on Trump involved extensive wiretapping (Did Obama order wiretaps of Trump conversations? ):

And likely there were others.

A good overview of Mueller fishing expedition was provided by Mike Whitney on Dec 21, 2017 (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.

 

Mike Whitney May 24 analysis

That's all nice but the truth is that Trump abandoned his agenda in April 2017, a month before appointment of Special Council. Also the intercity of Russian witch hunt was such that appointment of a special council was kind of inevitable. Trigger might be different, but the net result is the same.
The idea that both Rod Rosenstein and Robert Mueller belong to the same team is plausible. Mueller is also a close friend of Comey. But as Trump folded what would be the gain from his removal ?
Notable quotes:
"... And, yes, I know, people are going to swarm to Rosenstein's defense and say, "Yeah, but, Trump is a bloviating buffoon and a mentally-unstable despot." And, they're right, too, the man is a menace, a narcissist and maybe even a crackpot. Just look at the Saudi arms deal where Trump agreed to provide hundreds of billions of dollars of weapons to a fanatical government that will undoubtedly use them to arm its jihadist army in Syria or kill women and children in Yemen. It just shows that Trump is a vicious, unprincipled militarist. But that doesn't change what Rosenstein did. People need to look beyond Trump's failings to appreciate what type of man we're dealing with here. Rosenstein is a duplicitous back-stabbing serpent. End of story. ..."
"... By appointing a Special Counsel, Rosenstein not only destroyed any chance Trump had at achieving his policy objectives, he also effectively rolled-back the results of the 2016 presidential election. ..."
"... We can now be 100 percent certain that Trump's political agenda will never get off the ground. His tax plan, his infrastructure plan, his health care plan; all of them have gone up in smoke thanks to Rosenstein. Which is good, right, since the Trump's "pamper the rich and screw-the-working-man" plan was crappy policy anyway? So, good riddance. ..."
"... And Rosenstein didn't pick hatchetman Robert Mueller by himself either. That's more malarkey. Mueller was picked by the same shadowy throng of elites that selected the 9-11 Commission, the big money guys who own this fecking country lock, stock and barrel. ..."
"... "Robert Mueller, picked as special prosecutor to investigate President Donald Trump, violated the US Constitution as FBI Director by using secret domestic spy programs, National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower William Binney told Sputnik. ..."
"... "My problem with Mueller is that he agreed with and used the Stellar Wind spying program at NSA against common crime since 2001," Binney said Wednesday. "He admitted to this in a 2011 interview with [Time magazine correspondent] Bart Gellman." ..."
"... Binney said that Mueller's willingness to use secret espionage surveillance techniques designed only for national security functions against suspects in regular criminal investigations revealed his willingness to ignore or break safeguards in the US Constitution. ..."
"... Repeat: He used "secret espionage surveillance techniques designed only for national security functions against suspects in regular criminal investigations." ..."
"... What Aaronson discovered was that, far from preventing terrorism, the FBI uses its funds to "manufacture" terrorists out of marginalized, desperate, mentally ill or immature men (many of the convicted individuals profiled are in their early twenties). In Aaronson's words, "The FBI has been effective at creating the very enemy it is hunting." . ..."
"... And the man who oversaw these operations, Robert Mueller, is the same guy the media has been praising as the embodiment of integrity and moral rectitude. Give me a break. Mueller knew these operations were a hoax, he had to know. The FBI was working a sting to lure hard-luck dimwits into doing things they'd never normally dream of doing. It's called entrapment, which is exactly what it is. ..."
"... So what are the odds that Trump will get a fair shake in this deal? How about zero? There's zero chance that Grand Inquisitor Mueller and his Star Chamber assistants are going to conduct an objective, independent investigation. In fact, the whole Special Counsel meme is just an attempt to dignify the railroading of the Chief Executive. There's not much more to it than that. They need these sham legal proceedings to create the impression that the final outcome hasn't already been decided. But it has already been decided. Trump's going to be driven from office and there's not a damn thing he can do about it. The die has been cast, and Trump came up snake-eyes. ..."

Appointment of rabid anti-Trump prosecutors

Mueller got this appointment after he was rejected by Trump for the position of the director of FBI. So he  might have personal grudges to hold. In any case the selection of his team tells us a lot about the direction of the investigation as "personnel is policy".  Among the most notorious members of his team were

Peter Strzok

Peter Strzok the man who was instrumental in swiping the dirt of Hillary "emailgate" under the carpet as well as using Steele dossire as a ram to put members of Trump team under surveillance. Later became involved in Strzok-gate scandal and  removed from the investigation. Along with Comey and McCabe he influenced the US Presidential election depriving Sanders from chances to became the candidate from the Democratic Party. 

Peter P. Strzok II (born in 1970, currently 47 year old) was until July 2017  the key figure in Clinton Email investigation and Trump Russiagate investigation as a Deputy Assistant Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and second in command of counterintelligence.  He is the central figure of so called Strzok-gate scandal.

Despite being  a rabid Hillary Clinton supporter (judging from his texts to Lisa Page with whom he allegedly has an affair ) he was assigned as the investigator both Hillary Clinton's use of a personal email server, and allegations of collusion of Trump team with Russians in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election.  which were conducted in highly politized manner ( Anti-Trump FBI Agent Changed Language Of Hillary Email Scandal From Grossly Negligent To Extremely Careless )

Electronic records show Peter Strzok, who led the investigation of Hillary Clinton's private email server as the No. 2 official in the counterintelligence division, changed Comey's earlier draft language describing Clinton's actions as "grossly negligent" to "extremely careless," the source said. The drafting process was a team effort, CNN is told, with a handful of people reviewing the language as edits were made, according to another US official familiar with the matter.

Subsequently, he joined the 2017 Special Counsel investigation but was quietly removed by Mueller in late July 2017. At this time he was demoted in FBI to HR department.

 

Andrew Weissmann. He is called a legal bulldog of Mueller team. Here is how pro-clinton site thedailybeast.com  chantaterise hims

The FBI’s decision to send a dozen agents on an early-hour raid of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s home struck some observers as an audacious, even unprecedented move for a white collar criminal case.

But to former federal prosecutors familiar with members of special counsel Bob Mueller’s team, it had all the makings of the work of Andrew Weissmann.

A former federal prosecutor from Brooklyn who spent his career going after mobsters, ponzi-schemers, and white collar criminals, Weissmann is known as a tenacious operator who uses strategies that have dazzled some legal experts and disturbed others. They believe his presence on Mueller’s team means the probe may push legal boundaries as it investigates alleged collusion between Trump and Russian interests.

“He fashions himself as a real tactician, in the sense of having a chessboard in front of him and moving pieces around,” said a person who has faced Weissmann in court.

Mueller has known and trusted Weissmann for more than a decade, having made him special counsel at the FBI for a few months in 2005, according to the Houston Chronicle. In 2011, after Weissmann left the bureau for a short stint in private practice, Mueller brought him back and made him the FBI’s general counsel.

“Mueller trusted him to be the FBI’s top lawyer,” said a former federal prosecutor who knows Weissmann. “That’s a pretty big deal.”

While he was general counsel to the FBI, Weissmann was known as quick-moving and decisive.
 

I am so proud Mueller deputy congratulated Sally Yates after she was fired for refusing to enforce Trump's travel ban  The substantive part of Andrew Weissmann’s email to Yates is just 11 words long.

Judicial Watch today released two productions (335 pages and 44 pages) of Justice Department (DOJ) documents showing strong support by top DOJ officials for former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates’ refusal to enforce President Trump’s Middle East travel ban executive order. In one email, Andrew Weissmann, one of Robert Mueller’s top prosecutors and formerly the Obama-era Chief of the Justice Department’s Criminal Fraud Section, applauds Yates writing: “I am so proud. And in awe. Thank you so much. All my deepest respects.”…

“This is an astonishing and disturbing find. Andrew Weisman, a key prosecutor on Robert Mueller’s team, praised Obama DOJ holdover Sally Yates after she lawlessly thwarted President Trump,” stated Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton. “How much more evidence do we need that the Mueller operation has been irredeemably compromised by anti-Trump partisans? Shut it down.”

The Hatch Act, passed in 1939, prohibits civil servants from engaging in political activity, which is directed at the promotion of or advocacy against a political party, group or candidate.  When you consider that Ms. Yates leaked FISA information to the Washington Post without the authority or approval to do so, which is a crime, I would have serious reservations about having anyone supportive of a criminal and who can be viewed as a part of an attempted coup on the new POTUS in the team


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[Feb 18, 2018] The irony of this indictment is so thick that it is overwhelming

Feb 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Den Lille Abe | Feb 18, 2018 1:52:42 AM | 55

The irony of this indictment is so thick that it is overwhelming.

The US has as far back as I can recall, as an political aware person, say 1973, been implicated in regime change or meddling. In Europe less violent than the rest of the world, but never the less they were there, as was the USSR. Spending money, influencing, subverting, coercing and in some cases resorting to violence, in order to get their government of choice. Italy and Greece were places that were sought out because of the strong left. And things did get violent from both sides. Those not old enough , look it up, there is plenty of evidence, declassified documents available. Northern Ireland was another place they meddled quite openly.

In the rest of the world, especially in South America, it was far, far more violent and less covert, almost all South American countries suffered.

It is blatantly hysterical, mind boggling hysterical, that Israel's influence and is silently accepted, but Israeli influence is so huge that opposition can be suppressed.

To counter foreign "meddling" the US is quietly regulating the Internet, introducing the Great US Firewall. What a pathetic nation, what a joke....

[Feb 18, 2018] The people running these sites did not care who would win the election. But they found that stories about Trump generated MORE TRAFFIC than pro Clinton stories. (BTW: U.S. main stream media found the same and was therefore full of Trump stories.) More traffic/followers is their sole point. What Veles produced, though, was something more extreme still: an enterprise of cool, pure amorality, free not only of ideology but of any concern or feeling about the substance of the election. These Macedonians on Facebook didn't care if Trump won or lost the White House.

Feb 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org
Kalen , Feb 18, 2018 3:38:32 AM | 62
For hundred times it is all provocation against Russia, psyop that intensified since Putin returned to power and started rebuilding Russian military after another western provocation in Georgia and later in Moldova, it became exponential after Ukrainian putsch in 2014.

Ultimately removal and Putin and now Xi who will follow Putin to be elected four times breaking the western imposed rotation of CIA agents in the Chinese and Russian leadership is the ultimate goal of the Western globalists to be replaced by oth Chinese and Russian oligarchs with more consmopolitan autlooke devoid of notions of nation states but rather global imperial provinces of US western emporium.

These are neocons sick dreams but as we see they will not be stopped without real bottom up anti oligarchic revolution and instead escalate into preprogrammed chaos and global conflict among people while harmony among oligarchy.

b , Feb 18, 2018 3:52:42 AM | 63
@liburl @20 - "Could you comment on this. All things being equal the marketing scheme would have spread
their positive and derogatory posts equally to any given candidate, yet Mueller says
Hillary was under attack."

Aside from the "Russian influence" there were commercial fake-news site created and run from Macedonia. These were widely reported about. for example by Wired: Inside the Macedonian Fake-News Complex .

The people running these sites did not care who would win the election. But they found that stories about Trump generated MORE TRAFFIC than pro Clinton stories. (BTW: U.S. main stream media found the same and was therefore full of Trump stories.) More traffic/followers is their sole point.

What Veles produced, though, was something more extreme still: an enterprise of cool, pure amorality, free not only of ideology but of any concern or feeling about the substance of the election. These Macedonians on Facebook didn't care if Trump won or lost the White House.
...

Trump groups seemed to have hundreds of thousands more members than Clinton groups, which made it simpler to propel an article into virality. (For a week in July, he experimented with fake news extolling Bernie Sanders. "Bernie Sanders supporters are among the smartest people I've seen," he says. "They don't believe anything. The post must have proof for them to believe it.") He posted under his own name but also under the guise of one of 200 or so bogus Facebook profiles that he'd purchased for this purpose. (A fake profile with a Russian name cost about 10 cents; for an American name, the price went up to 50 cents.)

[Feb 18, 2018] In other words, what Prigozhin's company is doing is hardly much different from what Facebook originally was set up to do: sell its followers, their details and their behaviours to paying customers

Feb 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: Jen | Feb 18, 2018 5:40:31 AM | 65

"... The sole point of creating a diverse army of sock-puppets with large following crowds was to sell the 'eyeballs' of the followers to the paying customers of the marketing company [Concord Catering] ..."

In other words, what Prigozhin's company is doing is hardly much different from what Facebook originally was set up to do: sell its followers, their details and their behaviours to paying customers, be they marketing organisations or the US government.

Rich , Feb 18, 2018 7:27:05 AM | 66
No Russian influence-just more fake news, more lies, more manipulation, more of the same pantomime politics starring puppet politicians and directed by the dangerous psychopaths who rule us and who are rushing us down a one way street to extinction...
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078L8K9H3

[Feb 18, 2018] Anti-Trumpists Use Mueller Indictments to Escalate Tensions With Nuclear-Armed Russia

Notable quotes:
"... Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers ..."
Feb 18, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller's indictment of 13 alleged members of a Russian troll farm is leading to calls for escalation with Russia, exacerbating tensions that are already at historic – and dangerous – lows, observes Caitlin Johnstone.

By Caitlin Johnstone

U.S. empire loyalists are so close to telling the truth when they babble about "Russian propaganda." They are openly admitting that it is wrong to use media to manipulate the ways that Americans think and vote. Now all we need is for them to admit that they themselves do this constantly , and we'll be on the right track.

St. Petersburg's Internet Research Agency building, the alleged Russian troll factory that has sown discord in U.S. politics, according to Robert Mueller's indictment.

The word "Russians" is America's top trend on Twitter at the time of this writing because of a Mueller indictment of 13 alleged members of a Russian troll farm, those nefarious supervillains who posted pictures of puppies and promoted Bernie Sanders to "sow discord in the U.S. political system, including the 2016 U.S. election."

Predictably, no evidence is added to cohesively tie the establishment Russia narrative together with allegations of Russia hacking the Democratic Party and giving their emails to WikiLeaks, meeting with Donald Trump, Jr. at Trump Tower, any shenanigans with well-hydrated Russian prostitutes, or indeed anything tying the troll farm to Trump or the Russian government at all.

The focus instead is on people disguising their identities to troll Americans on social media, which we have now learned constitutes a "conspiracy to defraud the United States." As Disobedient Media's Elizabeth Lea Vos rightly points out , it is also behavior that the Hillary Clinton campaign is known to have funded and engaged in extensively.

In response to this underwhelming revelation, Democrats and Never-Trumpers are howling for new Cold War escalations with Russia. This despite the fact that this administration has already killed Russians in Syria , greatly escalated nuclear tensions with Russia, allowed the sale of arms to Ukraine (a move Obama refused for fear of angering Moscow), established a permanent military presence in Syria with the goal of effecting regime change, forced RT and Sputnik to register as foreign agents, expanded NATO with the addition of Montenegro, assigned Russia hawk Kurt Volker as special representative to Ukraine, shut down a Russian consulat e in San Francisco and expelled Russian diplomats as part of continued back-and-forth hostile diplomatic exchanges.

We are already at an extremely dangerous point in the ongoing trend of continuous escalations with a country that is armed with thousands of nuclear warheads. And these deranged lunatics want more.

"Special Counsel Mueller's indictments are further proof that Vladimir Putin directed a campaign to interfere with our elections, with the goal of tipping the outcome," tweeted Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. "Given these indictments, @realDonaldTrump should implement the sanctions that Congress passed immediately."

Steven Schmidt, MSNBC analyst and former strategist for George W. Bush and John McCain, said that the word "meddling" is not a sufficiently inflammatory word, because "What Russia did is ATTACK the United States. Trump and the Corrupted GOP majority refuse to defend the sovereignty of the country from this outside THREAT from a hostile state actor."

Congressmen Ted Lieu and Adam Schiff , Senator Bernie Sanders , popular commentators Preet Bharara and Joe Walsh have all joined in the pile-on, along with many, many others, all demanding that the president do more to escalate tensions with Russia even further than he already has.

This is exactly what renowned U.S.-Russian relations expert Stephen Cohen has been warning of : an extremely dangerous mixture of continually escalating Cold War tensions coexisting with hot proxy wars between two nuclear superpowers, with a president facing immense political pressures to keep advancing and never, ever back down. A narcissist in the White House being baited by his political enemies into a game of nuclear "chicken," without the ability to swerve when necessary.

Meanwhile what are Republicans talking about? Why, they're all crowing about the fact that these Russia revelations began on Obama's watch and don't show collusion, of course.

Do you see what is happening here? There is never, ever going to be any proof of Trump-Russia collusion, because that has never been what this is about. We've talked about this before : America's unelected power establishment doesn't care about impeaching Trump, it cares about hobbling Russia in order to prevent the rise of a potential rival superpower in its ally China. All this lunacy makes perfect sense when you realize this. The U.S. deep state is using the hysterical cult of anti-Trumpism to manufacture support for increasing escalations with Russia, and the anti-Trumpists are playing right along under the delusion that pushing for moves against Russia will hurt Trump.

Well they will not hurt Trump, because there has never been any Trump-Russia collusion. If there had been it would have been picked up by America's sprawling surveillance networks and leaked to the Washington Post before the end of 2016, and if Trump were a Putin puppet he wouldn't be continually escalating toward direct conflict with Russia in ways his predecessor Obama never would have dreamed of doing. They aren't hurting Trump with these loud cries for increased sanctions and hawkishness, they're imperiling us all.

Democrats, it is time to stop letting them bait you into calling for even more escalations with a nuclear superpower and start calling for detente instead. Republicans, it is time for you to stop putting partisan politics ahead of the survival of our species and start pushing against these dangerous escalations that your president has been playing right along with. These escalations are extremely dangerous and getting ever more so, and in the name of all that is holy I implore you to stop before the unthinkable happens.

On my knees I beg you all to stop this madness, for the sake of my children and yours. You lunatics on both sides of the political divide are going to get us all killed. In God's name, stop. Please.

Caitlin Johnstone is a rogue journalist, poet, and utopia prepper who publishes regularly at Medium . Follow her work on Facebook , Twitter , or her website. She has a podcast and a new book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers . This article was re-published with permission.

[Feb 18, 2018] This Mueller revelation of 13 Russians flipping a combined campaign amount of 6.9 billion dollars spent by both American presidential candidates, is awl inspiring, and convinces me to if I were to run for public office I would do myself well to get these 13 Russians to work for my campaign

Notable quotes:
"... Besides that Rosenstein did his duty, as to redirect our attention from those nasty FISA court accusations, made by the Nunes Memo how conveniently timed. Although, Mueller's fantastic work (not my words but Rachel's) did not implicate any Russian involvement, and to the disappointment of many Democrates Mueller didn't imply that Vladimir Putin gave his permission to flip Hillary's win, but all the same .the Russians are up to no good, period. ..."
"... Mueller's Russia investigation is the le creme de le crumb of FBI investigations ..."
"... Fox news was thrilled, and patted themselves on the back for knowing it was a lie all along, at least the part where Russia helped Trump get elected. However they continued with their anti-Russia rhetoric and repeatedly brought up Hillary's sale of Uranium to Russia. Now Trump is out there acknowledging, yes Russia interfered in our elections. Our interventionism on a world wide scale makes this all quite nauseating. ..."
"... Those Russians created discord, well, they really didn't have to bother since Americans were so good at it, they didn't need any outside help. I haven't had the stomach to see how CNN, and MSNBC are going to handle this since they were such proponents of Russia-gate. ..."
"... Annie I'm glad you bring up the predictable timing of Rosenstein's release of the Mueller Russia-gate investigation, for these new allegations of Russian interference could replace the news of that awful shooting down in Florida ..."
"... I am now convinced that the indictment is a fraud upon the court deserving of sanctions being imposed on Mueller by the Court. ..."
"... The Mueller indictment is a highly unusual document. It's extraordinarily verbose for an indictment. Coupled with the fact that Mueller knew there was no way he would ever be required to prove what was charged (the U.S. has no extradition treaty with Russia), the indictment is not in reality addressed to a judge or jury; it's fodder for propaganda purposes and as discussed below, is intended to protect the indictment's entire subject matter from Freedom of Information Act requests. ..."
"... The document is overflowing with information that would be filed under seal if it was not fictional. A host of classified intelligence sources and methods would be on full display if the information in the indictment was factual. E.g., we get internal Russian company documents and private emails. Those records would have to be authenticated at trial with admissible proof of how DoJ and the FBI acquired them (sources and methods) if the indictment was intended for a judge and jury. But we get a 37-page detailed document without a single redaction for classified information. Are we to seriously believe that the Deep State is willing to burn the identities of private actor spies in Russia so they can testify that they stole company documents and emails in a foreign country? Or are we to believe that the FISA Court issued search warrants for FBI or NSA to penetrate the company's networks for a criminal rather than foreign intelligence purpose? ..."
"... Since we are purportedly dealing with Russians, one would also expect at least most of the quotes to be in Russian, requiring translation to English, yes? But we have here perfect English language smoking gun quotes and lots of them, without any indication that they have been translated from Russian as would be required if they had been. And they all speak for themselves, without need for interpretation. Even one such quote would be rare in criminal cases. But to have a bunch of them, all in English? It beggars belief. ..."
Feb 18, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Joe Tedesky

This Mueller revelation of 13 Russians flipping a combined campaign amount of 6.9 billion dollars spent by both American presidential candidates, is awl inspiring, and convinces me to if I were to run for public office I would do myself well to get these 13 Russians to work for my campaign utterly amazing, these Russian trolls could flip such an overly expensive long term election with so little.

Besides that Rosenstein did his duty, as to redirect our attention from those nasty FISA court accusations, made by the Nunes Memo how conveniently timed. Although, Mueller's fantastic work (not my words but Rachel's) did not implicate any Russian involvement, and to the disappointment of many Democrates Mueller didn't imply that Vladimir Putin gave his permission to flip Hillary's win, but all the same .the Russians are up to no good, period.

This story barely tops the exclusion of Russian athletes from the Olympics for drug doping, but Mueller's Russia investigation is the le creme de le crumb of FBI investigations . Florida 19 year old shooter, not so much.

In the end, this will just be another day in an America life, while Mueller and company wind this thing down, and with the hopes the open sore FISA court insinuation goes away.

This whole thing is maddening.

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 1:20 pm

Here's some extra reading .

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/02/16/falsehoods-and-lies-inciting-war-war-crime.html

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 1:27 pm

Read this it shows the quality of stupidity that is running our country, or at least is a part of the small cabal that is lying to us.

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/02/15/when-former-spies-turn-into-tv-experts.html

Annie , February 17, 2018 at 2:37 pm

Joe, you do have to ask yourself why Mueller came out with their non-findings on Friday when everyone's attention was drawn to the school shootings in Florida where the FBI was given warnings, but neglected to pay attention, and the governor of Florida is calling for Wray's resignation, and heads to roll.

Fox news was thrilled, and patted themselves on the back for knowing it was a lie all along, at least the part where Russia helped Trump get elected. However they continued with their anti-Russia rhetoric and repeatedly brought up Hillary's sale of Uranium to Russia. Now Trump is out there acknowledging, yes Russia interfered in our elections. Our interventionism on a world wide scale makes this all quite nauseating.

Those Russians created discord, well, they really didn't have to bother since Americans were so good at it, they didn't need any outside help. I haven't had the stomach to see how CNN, and MSNBC are going to handle this since they were such proponents of Russia-gate.

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 3:10 pm

Annie I'm glad you bring up the predictable timing of Rosenstein's release of the Mueller Russia-gate investigation, for these new allegations of Russian interference could replace the news of that awful shooting down in Florida.

I actually picture Mueller & Rosenstein as planning this long before the shooting, and I can just see them figuring out that during the next mass shooting on a Friday before a weekend news cycle, that bringing up the Russia thing would not only distract our attention away from how the FBI dropped the ball on catching a 19 year old shooter who had tons of red flags surrounding him, while adding some new life to all that is bad about Russians, was the go to point.

I'm not surprised, although disappointed, that FOX is on the anti-Russian band wagon. This keeping Russia in the dog house has been discussed, and written about on this comment board, so keeping Russia & especially Putin in the spot light of all that is evil, to me comes as no surprise.

It would appear that the U.S. is eventually going to go to war with Russia, or do we dare? Neocon's are good at dropping bombs on far away places, but will they be any good at ducking them when the bombs drop here?

And yes we Americans don't need any help from any Russians in order to screw up our democracy, we are perfectly great at doing that ourselves. Joe

Paul E. Merrell, J.D. , February 17, 2018 at 7:46 pm

Annie, I'll reply to your question in another comment. But I'm going to pile onto your near-top comment to spread some important information in its own right before commenting. Bernard at Moon of Alabama has just convincingly put the lie to Mueller's indictment by building upon an article he posted last October. http://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/02/mueller-indictement-the-russian-influence-is-a-commercial-marketing-scheme.html

I am now convinced that the indictment is a fraud upon the court deserving of sanctions being imposed on Mueller by the Court. I'll add some reasons for believing that in my follow-up comment.

Joe Tedesky , February 18, 2018 at 1:33 am

Paul that was the best so far of anything I read, or learned, about this Mueller/Rosenstein travesty. Joe

john wilson , February 18, 2018 at 6:04 am

Also Paul, did you know that the vice chairman of Face book has just announced that most of the Russian advertising spend happened AFTER the election. Read it for yourself on the zero hedge site.

Paul E. Merrell, J.D. , February 18, 2018 at 6:14 am

Yes, Joe. I'd really like to see VIPS dive into what b presented.

The Mueller indictment is a highly unusual document. It's extraordinarily verbose for an indictment. Coupled with the fact that Mueller knew there was no way he would ever be required to prove what was charged (the U.S. has no extradition treaty with Russia), the indictment is not in reality addressed to a judge or jury; it's fodder for propaganda purposes and as discussed below, is intended to protect the indictment's entire subject matter from Freedom of Information Act requests.

As further indications that the document is a work of fiction not intended for a judge or jury:

1. The document is overflowing with information that would be filed under seal if it was not fictional. A host of classified intelligence sources and methods would be on full display if the information in the indictment was factual. E.g., we get internal Russian company documents and private emails. Those records would have to be authenticated at trial with admissible proof of how DoJ and the FBI acquired them (sources and methods) if the indictment was intended for a judge and jury. But we get a 37-page detailed document without a single redaction for classified information. Are we to seriously believe that the Deep State is willing to burn the identities of private actor spies in Russia so they can testify that they stole company documents and emails in a foreign country? Or are we to believe that the FISA Court issued search warrants for FBI or NSA to penetrate the company's networks for a criminal rather than foreign intelligence purpose?

2. There are way too many perfect smoking gun English language quotes. It's rare to get smoking gun quotes from defendants and they almost always require context to interpret them. Since we are purportedly dealing with Russians, one would also expect at least most of the quotes to be in Russian, requiring translation to English, yes? But we have here perfect English language smoking gun quotes and lots of them, without any indication that they have been translated from Russian as would be required if they had been. And they all speak for themselves, without need for interpretation. Even one such quote would be rare in criminal cases. But to have a bunch of them, all in English? It beggars belief.

3. In a normal criminal case, an indictment's allegations would be tested at a public trial and the public would then learn what the evidence actually is. But with a case where the defendants will never be extradited to stand trial, the entire case file is exempt from public disclosure under the law enforcement records Freedom of Information Act exemption so long as the investigation is ongoing. By vastly increasing the level of detail beyond what is required for an indictment, Mueller sweeps far more evidence into what is clearly exempt from public disclosure.

4. Grand jury procedure permits what bernard describes, although it is highly unethical and violates a lawyer's duty of candor to the grand jury and the court. In a grand jury, the prosecution is not required to show any evidence tending to establish the defendants' innocence. Just enough evidence for the grand jury to find that the prosecution can present a prima facie case of guilt. That means Mueller did not have to show the grand jury any of the Internet communications that favored Hillary Clinton rather than Trump. But we know from bernard's October article and from MSM reports when the Facebook ads were disclosed to Congress that the pro-Clinton communications exist too. In other words, Mueller apparently cherry picked the evidence to support his charge that the communications all favored Trump instead of Clinton.

5.The indictment presents a wacky theory that the defendants conspired to defraud the United States that is riddled with First Amendment issues. Conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud, that's not obviously a bad argument. But that fraud conspiracy claim smells like a very long distance stretch to me (caveat, I have not yet researched it thoroughly). But what's fraudulent about reports you never filed with the FEC and DoJ? Why not just charge them with not filing the reports? Is it just so you can trumpet "conspiracy to commit fraud on the United States?"

There's more but those are the major points I've got so far.

[Feb 18, 2018] It pains me to once again be confronted with the fact that Sanders is a neocon hack

Feb 18, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Zachary Smith

Congressmen Ted Lieu and Adam Schiff, Senator Bernie Sanders , popular commentators Preet Bharara and Joe Walsh have all joined in the pile-on .

It pains me to once again be confronted with the fact that Sanders is a neocon hack.

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 1:30 pm

Your right Zachary in as much as Sanders has been inspiring, he along time ago should have dispelled this Russia-gate Bull, and went forward promoting his progressive goals. Joe

LaNinya , February 17, 2018 at 2:44 pm

I wrote off Bernie Sanders as a serious contender when, upon losing the Democratic nomination, instead of falling back on his life-long status as an Independent and socialist to throw his support to the Stein/Baraka ticket, he full-throatedly exhorted his supporters to vote for Hillary (Dick Cheney with lipstick) Clinton. Which, to me, indicated that he lacks faith in his own convictions.

It's interesting, though, that running as a "socialist" he attracted such great crowds and enthusiastic support. Remember how almost shocking that was? That anyone would be so bold as to run for president as a "socialist"?

And yet it hasn't been that long ago that the Communist Party itself would routinely field presidential candidates to run in the elections. Indeed, turns out John Brennan himself had voted for the communist candidate (Gus Hall) back in 1976.

When and how did the United States allow it's political discourse to get so cramped and narrow? Does anyone remember?

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 3:19 pm

I think the U.S. was captured into the net as far back as maybe starting with the midnight vote to establish the Federal Reserve in 1913. Another place would be the right wing Dem's putting Harry Truman on the VP ticket in 1944. And how could we analyze this downfall without including the assassination era, starting with JFK in 1963? Yes LaNinya it's been a long slow process, and it ain't over until the fascist take total control.

The public's yearning to hear Socialist Sanders, is interesting, but does anyone for one minute take the time to realize that Bernie at best is a tat to the right of an FDR new Dealer? Although you go with the best you got, it is a shame that there aren't more truly Leftist candidates, because I think Americans want them. Joe

mijkmild , February 17, 2018 at 3:39 pm

Add to that the end of the draft in 1973, which we thought was a victory, only to see a corporate military rise as the only means of access to "education" and "employment". A military corporation dedicated to war, death and destruction for profit, as well as censorship of its ultimate goals, and an industrial output of propaganda to encourage and prop up its agenda.

Rave on Sasha Alexandre. Rave on Jara. I am not your enemy. 173 Oudezijds Achterburgwal, Amsterdam Centrum.

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 4:04 pm

You raise a memorial point, milkmild. I just got off active duty around the time the draft was ended. As happy as I was, I also recall giving some thought to what would our military do, without all of us Constitutional pesky civilians around to nag the warmongering brass, as we did? Well now I know. Joe

mike k , February 17, 2018 at 3:07 pm

Sanders is a turncoat traitor to those he misled.

nonsense factory , February 17, 2018 at 3:51 pm

Sanders is interesting, in that he was basically running against Clinton just so she could say that she had an opponent. The Sanders platform is basically FDR-limited, in that if you look back to 1933 you can see FDR running on a very similar (but much more anti-Wall Street) platform.

My one piece of advice on Sanders is, don't trust politicians in this system to fix problems – we live in a seriously plutocratic system with remarkable similarities to Brezhnev's Soviet Union. Our politics is largely theater – Sanders was to be the foil to Clinton, and Trump's rise in the Republican Party was largely engineered by corporate allies of Hillary Clinton who thought he'd be easier to defeat than GW Bush. The Republican wing of the plutocracy wanted either Bush or Rubio, for similar reasons.

Trump was never supposed to win the general election, and Sanders was never supposed to get anywhere near Clinton in the primary. Somehow the whole program went off the rails, and the neolib/neocon crowd in Washington and Wall Street didn't see it coming. Now they're trying to pick up the pieces. . .

But I don't think all the king's horses and all the king's men, will be able to put the American Empire back together again. So I'm betting that the Soviet Union collapse scenario is going to play out in the United States; Gorbachev,Yeltsin, Putin. If we can find someone like Putin who will throw our politically-minded oligarchs in jail or exile them, as Putin did with Khodorkovsky, Berezovsky and Gusinsky, then we'll be much better off and the pain will not last as long.

As far as Russia vs. the USA, no, China holds all the cards, on renewable energy, on technology, on diplomacy. We should all learn to speak Chinese and Russian, anyway . . . Just so we can communicate with our equals on a level field. Bye bye Empire, bye bye. . .

[Feb 18, 2018] The Mueller indictment describes a common clickbait operation through a most hysterical and paranoid lens. Absurd madness. It's "commies are poisoning our vital bodily fluids" level stuff. Imposing controls on the internet is one endgame here

Feb 18, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Herman

"The U.S. deep state is using the hysterical cult of anti-Trumpism to manufacture support for increasing escalations with Russia, and the anti-Trumpists are playing right along under the delusion that pushing for moves against Russia will hurt Trump."

On the mark, but the strategy goes beyond the deep state which I take to mean actors within our government. Cui bono, and that includes suspects that make no pretense of what they are after. The problems with their plans is that it assumes they have their hand on the switch that can turn this putsch on and off and somewhere in between.

Jessika , February 17, 2018 at 5:28 pm

Absolutely, politics is mostly theater, as nonsense factory stated. Tom Welsh and mike k, what a great exchange on humans as stupid as sand fleas! The western nations are floundering because of their slavish dependence on money and military might, and the US is set for economic collapse soon with $20tn debt and unbelievable deficit and continuing to rise to aid oligarchs; meanwhile with desperate masses, many of whom can't even put a roof over their heads without help. The Goldman has Sacked US. Notice how Goldman Sachs has been in charge of the gold since Bill Clinton? These fiends are using displacement because they have made the bloodiest mess of American society so they blame Russia for what they do, they're psychopathic. We've got to call them on it. Do read that article at The Saker, "A Brief History of the Kremlin Trolls". The imprint of CIA is all over this.

jaycee , February 17, 2018 at 6:01 pm

The Mueller indictment describes a common clickbait operation through a most hysterical and paranoid lens. Absurd madness. It's "commies are poisoning our vital bodily fluids" level stuff. Imposing controls on the internet is one endgame here.

Gregory Herr , February 17, 2018 at 8:42 pm

I put myself through the excruciation of watching a bit of Chris Hayes tonight talking with Nadler (D-NY) and some guy from the Clinton campaign who were both calling the so-called "interference" an "attack" tantamount to Pearl Harbor. Hayes played the straight man and poohed the comparison a bit, but they were insistent and Hayes suggested the logical conclusion of what they were demanding in response was war. Nadler stopped short of that but said the Russians must pay a heavy price (more sanctions) and the other guy said the new war would be of the cyber variety. I think you are right that "imposing controls on the internet is one endgame here".

David G , February 17, 2018 at 9:30 pm

The rhetorical slippery slope started with "hacking the DNC" (not that I'm conceding the reality of that), and slid rapidly through:
"hacking the election" to
"hacking our democracy" to
"attacking our democracy" to
"attacking our country",
and now what you saw on MSNBC, Gregory Herr, is the norm.

I've seen: What is the difference between what the Russians did here and if they'd occupied the Aleutian Islands?

How to rationally engage with argle-bargle paranoia like that?

David G , February 17, 2018 at 9:19 pm

jaycee, I think that is actually a key point that should be foregrounded in commentary on this nonsense: the psychological drivers are concerns about *purity* and *contamination*.

I've read about studies that show such preoccupations correlate with right-wing, or "conservative", political orientation, which absolutely describes the Russia-gate construct, despite its demographic base on the Dem-partisan, allegedly liberal, side of the aisle/populace.

KiwiAntz , February 17, 2018 at 6:26 pm

I'm from NZ so I'm going to use a Lord of the Rings analogy? America & it's Deepstate is the evil "Sauron" of the World"? Sauron (like the US) is a cowardly bully who wants to dominate all life on earth using his Ork minions (MIC) & one ring (nuclear weapons) to rule them all? What did it take to stop Sauron (& what will it take to stop the US?) A last alliance of men, elves & all the other people's of middle earth (planet earth) uniting & standing together as one to confront this grave threat to life on earth?? JRR Toiken understood the situation only to well I think? Simplistic solution,but a time is coming when all Nations of the Earth are going to have to stand up too & destroy the greatest existential threat too life on Earth, that has ever been, which is the American Empire & USA? A greater threat than Nazi Germany ever was? The survival of the human race is at stake as your lunatic leaders are leading us to permanent destruction! You'd be surprised at the amount of rich Americans, think Peter Thiel for one example, buying end times, survival prepper, bolt holes in my Country of NZ as they can see what your insane, hysterical Nation is leading us too? When the rich start abandoning the Country, like rats leaving a sinking ship, ITS TIME TO TAKE NOTICE? Just as one small hobbit, the most unlikeliest of hero's changed the outcome & the fate of middle earth, it set a precedent that ordinary people or small people of the World could stand up to & unite against EVIL & become the most unlikeliest of heroes in order to SAVE our Earth? God help us all?

mike k , February 17, 2018 at 6:53 pm

Well said!

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 7:12 pm

My dying last warning to you KiwiAntz while I'm stuck here on the USA mainland is when those rich creeps of ours do come to your beloved New Zealand .immediately arrest them, and put then in jail. Since I'm not big on capital punishment that's the best advice I can give you, but if you would rather I could hand this over to my cousins in Jersey, because their good at making things disappear. Be careful, watch yourself KiwiAntz. Joe

Jessika , February 17, 2018 at 6:43 pm

Good one, KiwiAntz! I agree with you and I also think that Mother Earth is sending messages to humans, too. Too many people allowing (mis)leaders to lead us over a cliff.

mike k , February 17, 2018 at 7:00 pm

"Worse than Hitler" hits Uncle Sam right on the head. Our leaders learned a lot from Hitler and his gang, but they have gone far beyond what Hitler accomplished. Racism, power lust, torture, fiendish weapons, mass murder – we have the whole package now in spades.

Marko , February 18, 2018 at 8:26 am

Worse , indeed , but what bothers me most is that we ( the American people ) have allowed the situation to get this bad.

I used to wonder : " How could the German people have allowed Hitler to obtain and maintain his power ? Were they blind , or were they just as evil as he was ? " Now I don't have to wonder any more – I'm experiencing the phenomenon first-hand , in real time. If the Guiness Book of World Records ever comes up with a category called " Nation With the Most Irresponsible Populace " , Germany no longer has to fear being named the record-holder , thanks to us.

Euroyankee , February 17, 2018 at 7:38 pm

To say that what the Russians did had any effect on the election is like claiming it was the fly fart in the tornado that blew the roof off.

Zachary Smith , February 17, 2018 at 7:45 pm

Lately I've seen some quips which are really memorable. "Fly fart in a tornado" is great, and the one by mike k the other day also made my day:

Voting in a crooked system is like pissing in the ocean – it's OK if you have nothing better to do .

jose , February 17, 2018 at 8:32 pm

You are correct when you assert that : "It's all been gossip and innuendo" Somebody ought to tell Mr. Mueller " clay, clay, clay for without it, I cannot make bricks" I have not seen anything remotely resembling hard evidence. This entire Russia debacle reminds me of the 2007 movie of Batman in which at the end the joker states the following: "Madness as you know is like gravity, all it takes is a little push" The worse part in all this is that millions of Americans believe this Russia meddeling as a given without demanding any solid prove. The grip of the American doctrinal system is very powerful, indeed.

Rael Nidess, M.D. , February 17, 2018 at 10:02 pm

"In God's name, stop. Please."

The voice of sanity.

Jessika , February 17, 2018 at 10:34 pm

Everything written here by Caitlin Johnstone makes sense except that you can't beg a psychopath to stop what they're doing. Like asking a serial killer not to kill you.

MLS , February 17, 2018 at 11:25 pm

The more I see the same commenters congratulating themselves on their respective confident, cognitive bias-laden assertions, the more painfully obvious it becomes that while posters here may know what they have read and heard, none have any clue what is going on.

Where exactly is the factual basis, for example, for this stunning paragraph:

"Well they will not hurt Trump, because there has never been any Trump-Russia collusion. If there had been it would have been picked up by America's sprawling surveillance networks and leaked to the Washington Post before the end of 2016, and if Trump were a Putin puppet he wouldn't be continually escalating toward direct conflict with Russia in ways his predecessor Obama never would have dreamed of doing. They aren't hurting Trump with these loud cries for increased sanctions and hawkishness, they're imperiling us all."

?

Because Caitlin said so? If/then theoreticals? Please.

The great Robert Parry did research. Journalistic legwork.

The cynicism olympics of small-time blogsylvania is no substitute.

BobS , February 18, 2018 at 12:11 am

Forget it Jake, it's Chinatown.

backwardsevolution , February 18, 2018 at 4:35 am

MLS – well, where's the evidence? Please enlighten us.

[Feb 18, 2018] My question is, is the American public wittingly or nonwittingly going along for the ride on this Russia-gate bus to no where?

Feb 18, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Mild - ly - Facetious

Mueller Indictments Miss The Mark On Trump Russia Collusion

By Jonathan Turley
2/17/18

http://thehill.com/opinion/judiciary/374312-mueller-indictments-still-miss-the-mark-on-trump-russia-collusion

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 2:05 pm

My question is, is the American public wittingly or nonwittingly going along for the ride on this Russia-gate bus to no where?

nonsense factory , February 17, 2018 at 4:00 pm

Based on what looks, at first glance, as widespread censorship of comment sections on this story in the corporate media across the English-speaking world, I'm guessing that the general public is not really buying it, outside the hardcore center of wealthy Clinton-Blair supporters and MIC insiders. That's just my impression, though.

When empires begin to collapse, the centers of wealth and power draw inwards and set up walls in a desperate bid to retain control; but the harder they try to grasp it the more slips through their fingers. They also tend to blame external forces for their own incompetence and Byzantine corruption, which is why all the finger-pointing at Russia. That's what I'm seeing, anyway.

Prophecy is never to be trusted; who knows how this will turn out? But it sure doesn't look good for the status quo of the Clinton-Bush-Obama era; those days are likely gone forever. Trump is ramping up wealth inequality with his massive tax cuts and huge military-industrial budget – again, much like the end days of the Soviet Union, when the apparatchiks had their Black Sea villas while the rest of the country lived in poverty.

Joe Tedesky , February 17, 2018 at 4:06 pm

I'm growing to like hearing from you nonsense factory, thanks for your input. Joe

nonsense factory , February 17, 2018 at 8:24 pm

Thans Joe, I have used a wide variety of outlets to post my samizdat commentary but Consortium is one of the few places where both the publishers and the commentariat seem to be honest people, not playing some manipulative game.

Joe Tedesky , February 18, 2018 at 1:36 am

That's great, and you fit right in. Stay with us, we all might learn something. Joe

[Feb 18, 2018] Mueller No Collusion between Trump and Putin, but the Russia Card is Bigger than Ever by Boyd D. Cathey

Feb 18, 2018 | www.unz.com

Earlier in February, according to various Fox and Neoconservative pundits, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was close to being labeled "the devil incarnate," the man responsible for naming Robert Mueller as Special Counsel (and who had basically given him carte blanche to engage in a slow-burn campaign, an ideological investigative war, based on a spurious made-up dossier, against President Trump). Calls went out that Rosenstein should be replaced, even fired.

Now, a few days later -- and thirteen indictments from one of Mueller's grand juries, announced by the very same Rosenstein, specifically against more "Russian players" who reportedly "meddled" in the 2016 American elections, but without any connivance by the Trump campaign -- and Rosenstein is feted as a veritable savior of the republic by those same commenters. Those Neocons who now selectively support the president and those bitterly anti-Russian Fox pundits (with the possible exception of Tucker Carlson) are absolutely giddy with delight! For too long, in their defense of President Trump against the charge of collusion, they had found themselves in the extremely uncomfortable situation (for them) of having to mount an attempt to exculpate the Russians, or at least lessen their culpability.

But now, Rosenstein has presented them with one of those exquisite "Aha!" moments: at last, the onerous burden of disputing Russian connections with the Trump campaign has been lifted, but they can still, with more reason, keep those evil Russkies in the cross hairs as the supreme enemy of America!

And this fits to a tee their ideological predispositions. For the Neocons (and most of the Fox punditry) -- who are the dominant voice of the so-called contemporary "conservative movement" and the intellectual brain trust for much of the GOP -- are inveterate Russophobes. It makes no difference to them that Russia in 2018 is definitely not Russia of the old Soviet days; it makes little difference to them that since 1991 Russia has emerged as the leading global power in opposition to the secularist New World Order, and that its political and cultural trajectory is, if anything, more conservative and traditionalist. They ignore the fact that Gorbachev voluntarily agreed with George H. W. Bush to dissolve the Warsaw Pact (which he did), ending the Communist control of Eastern Europe, on condition that the United States not advance NATO further east (which is exactly what the United States then proceeded to do). They have repeatedly ignored and rejected Russian overtures for partnership, collaboration and cooperation (not the subinfeudation and subjection that Paul Wolfowitz and Charles Krauthammer demanded). They rip out of context Putin's statement that the dissolution of the old Soviet Union was "a monumental catastrophe" for Russia, failing to understand that his comments dealt specifically with the radical and disastrous ethnic and political consequences of the break up, with millions of ethnic Russians now in regions that were always part of Russia, now separated from the Mother Country, economically adrift and incapable of true independence.

Back on February 6 , in an effort to briefly explain some of the background for this zealous Russophobia, I wrote the following in a column:

"The Neocons, of course, owe their intellectual origin decades ago to that other major stream of Marxist thought, identified with Leon Trotsky and his zealous internationalism. Early on for those intellectual descendants of Trotsky their opposition to Soviet Communism was just as much a hatred for Russia, which they saw as anti-Semitic (e.g., the infamous "doctors' plot") and "reactionary," as it was for what they perceived as Stalin's (and Brezhnev's) perversion of the original "humanist" and "democratic core" of Marxist theory. Thus, even with the daily revelations, the reports and all the accounts of skulduggery by agents of the Deep State that seem to seep out, the narrative of "the Russians Did It!" must be maintained, by both Progressivists AND the Neocons. Either the Russians and that "new Hitler" (to use Neocon Max Boot's ill-chosen comparison) Putin were somehow directing Donald Trump like a puppet master controls a stick puppet, or the Russians and that "new Hitler" were working with Hillary and the DNC to blacken Donald Trump's good name and unseat him. Either way "the Russians Did It!"

So, now we hear the news from Rosenstein that thirteen individual Russians and Russian organizations, beginning back in 2014, two years prior to the 2016 elections (and before Donald Trump was even mentioned as a real candidate), are charged with "attempted meddling" in our national elections using mainly the Internet and social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.). But no American citizens were compromised, and there was no collusion with the Trump campaign.

Duh. So? This is news? That a major world power spent a paltry million dollars (in a campaign in which a total of billions of dollars were spent) in some rather uniformly unsuccessful attempts to "meddle" here?

You would think that the Japs had bombed Pearl Harbor or that Putin's Cossacks had landed and seized Miami Beach! This story has nearly displaced the tragedy of the school shooting in Broward County, at least on Fox. With obvious satisfaction, Laura Ingraham (whom I do like on occasion), intoned on her Fox program: "I've been warning about the Russians for years!" But when she asked her guest former CIA director Admiral R. James Woolsey if we ever "meddled" in other countries' elections and governments, he simply laughed a bit nervously and attempted to avoid answering. (The answer is of course we do and have done so for decades : Guatemala, Iran, the Kennedy-approved assassination of President Diem, the recent Ukrainian coup against a popularly-elected but pro-Russian president, our funding of candidates subservient to our interests -- the list is endless.)

Another Fox pundit, Tucker Carlson on his program, briefly mentioned the "meddling" of Chinese operatives and organizations in the United States (where literally billions of dollars have been spent to shape American opinion and a major percentage of American commerce is now controlled by Beijing). Where is the Special Counsel investigating Chinese "meddling" and influence on American elections? Where are the congressional committees examining the extraordinary control by the Chinese of American business?

And what about Mexico which, using its various consulates scattered across the United States, helped engineer the registration of Mexican voters who would vote in the 2016 American elections? How many of those were -- are -- illegals? Except for such groups as ALIPAC, NumbersUSA, NC Listen, FAIR, VDare.com, and a few others, not a word and certainly, no congressional hearings.

Then, there is Saudi Arabia and the billions of oil-based petrodollars that have found their way into the coffers of American political leaders. When was the last time that you heard a serious critique of the Saudis (or their virtual, if remote responsibility for much of the Islamic extremism in the Middle East)?

And, lastly, and most significantly -- and this is the white elephant in the room -- what about the incredible influence of Israel in American politics? Okay, I recognize that you're not supposed to notice this, at least not mention it, lest you be labeled an "anti-semite" -- an accusation, a stain, like the charge of racism that is difficult, if not impossible, to expunge. Yet, can anyone rationally deny the immense influence of Israel -- and its "meddling" -- in our elections and politics?

I will make no judgments here whether the issues advanced by Israel and its supporters, the positions pushed, are good or bad, whether they are in our national interest or not. Israel has been an ally since its foundation in 1948, and the cultural and political bonds between our two nations have been and are very strong. But that doesn't change the facts: Israel is a major player in our politics, and such extremely powerful lobbying/public interest groups like AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) and the ADL (Anti-Defamation League) generally serve the interests of the State of Israel and attempt to identify them with American interests.

"Meddling" is an understatement when it comes to Israel. Remember the Jonathan Pollard espionage case? Pollard was a major American Israeli spy, whose spying and pilfering of top American secrets on behalf of Israel got him life imprisonment. And, politically, we only need to cast a brief glance to the past -- to the defeat of Senators J. William Fulbright (Arkansas) and Chuck Percy (Illinois), and Congressman Paul Findley (Illinois), and the attempted defeat of Representative Walter Jones Jr. more recently in North Carolina (e.g, Bill Kristol's million-dollar campaigns to defeat Jones in GOP primaries) -- all of whom refused to go along with unquestioning support of a pro-Israeli American agenda, or who raised some embarrassing questions, even in the most respectful and mildest manner.

Years ago, when working with the founder of the older conservative movement, Dr. Russell Kirk in Michigan, I met Dr. Alfred Lilienthal, a thoughtful Jewish opponent of Zionism and of the kind of international entanglements that he sincerely believed gave the Jewish state and Jews universally a negative reputation. Later on he presented me with copies of his major documented study on the topic, The Zionist Connection (original edition, 1978, and revised, 1982), which were revelatory for me.

More recently, Dr. Stephen J. Sniegoski's impressively documented, The Transparent Cabal: The Neoconservative Agenda, War in the Middle East, and the National Interest of Israel (2008), and Drs. John Mearsheimer's and Stephen Walt's The Israel Lobby and U. S. Foreign Policy (2007) have deepened aspects of Dr. Lilienthal analysis. And additional research and discussion by such writers as Philip Giraldi ( "Are America's Jews Driving America's Wars," 2017), and such distinguished authors of Jewish descent as Professors Walter Block ( "Is It Permissible to Criticize Jews?" January 2018) and Paul Gottfried ( his review of Neil Jumonville's The New York Intellectuals , 2008, on the relationship between Russian Jewish emigres centered in New York and their powerful influence in American culture and politics), have raised questions that should be examined calmly and rationally, but probably won't.

The shadowy Russians purportedly spent a million dollars to "meddle" and "sow confusion" in American politics, beginning two years before the 2016 elections. And the Neocon narrative, the template that indicts Russia, is preserved, and that is all you need to know. An anti-Trump "demonstration" in New York with forty-five sullen attendees, some fake ads on Facebook (which is literally filled with millions of other fake ads), some cyber interference, some phony URLs -- and the Russophobes go literally wild.

And all the while the major players in meddling and espionage and influence here in the US -- they skate, are ignored with a wink-and-a-smile, dollar signs in the eyes of the supposed guardians of the Republic!

Sheer hypocrisy and crass dishonesty incarnate.

[A portion of this essay has appeared at: http://boydcatheyreviewofbooks.blogspot.com/2018/02/february-17-2018-my-corner-russians.html ]


Jonathan Mason , February 18, 2018 at 6:23 am GMT

Never mind, Mueller can now further boost his pension prospects by taking a leaf out of Kenneth Starr's book and start investigating Trumpian payoffs to bimbos, and consider indictments for adultery. That should give him another couple of years of pensionable Deep State service.
Ace , February 18, 2018 at 6:26 am GMT
** cultural and political bonds between our two nations **

Israel is an enemy and a financial parasite. There are no bonds between us.

NoseytheDuke , February 18, 2018 at 7:13 am GMT
Israel has been CALLED an ally. Israel has never actually been an ally.

[Feb 18, 2018] And, what about all the foreign nationals who post here in this forum on this blog? I daresay most offer opinions not complementary of the US government and its political menagerie.

"I swear that Russiagate is nothing more than trying to cover up the blatant corruption of the DNC, Hillary Clinton, the FBI, CIA and The Department of Justice. Keep everybody busy with Russiagate and don't allow the corruption (with the help of the press) to see the light of day. Otherwise, people in high places would be going to jail.
Notable quotes:
"... As many commentators have pointed out, we are a country of completely brain washed people now. Schiff, Schumer, Sanders . . . they are all cut from the same cloth. There is not one politician left in the country who will challenge the The Ruling Power Structure's narrative. Even in Russia, there are lot of opposition leadership voices who are making noises against the System they disagree with. ..."
"... They can't make "hacking" stick 'cause it's false. They can't make "Trump is a Putin puppet" stick 'cause it's false. So now the whole damn dumb show–regurgitated by either shameless war profiteers or straight-faced useful idiots–comes down to so-called Russian social media trolls exercising the same "speech" that we are supposedly so proud to call "free" in this country. ..."
"... The Thought Police use surveillance and psychological monitoring to find and eliminate members of society who challenge the party's authority and ideology. ..."
"... Anyone who has questioned the intelligence agencies narrative that Russians and Trump colluded to win the election are viewed with suspicion as potential enemies of the state. ..."
"... What is the end goal? The end goal is to prop up a long in the tooth multi-decade cold war with Russia to justify massive military spending. Do you want to know the answer to your question of whether or not the US defense industry and our intelligence agencies are trying to spark a war with Russia? ..."
"... The answer is yes they are. As crazy as that sounds, the hungry defense industry with its insatiable appetite for more weapons has decided to go for the ultimate win the lottery strategy and foment war with Russia. It had been happening under Obama and now it is happening under Trump. They are trying to box him into a corner where he will feel enough pressure to go against Russia. Perhaps they can goad him into attacking Russia which is what I believe they want to do. Our national media plays along and is in bed with the intelligence agencies as much as ever just like they spouted the lies of Chalabi in Iraq War II falsely believing his claims that Saddam Hussein had nuclear and chemical and biological weapons. ..."
"... "Yet still they want more as Caitlin Johnstone pointed out. What they want now to do is to do the same thing they have been doing under Obama and enlist Trump on the grandest military adventure of all. War with Russia." ..."
"... The Russiagate affair has been going on for almost a year and I would think Mueller is under a lot of pressure to find something to stick. This indictment may be it. ..."
"... Once again, Russia's reputation will be taken down a few notches and made to suffer another humiliation. And the US will move on to the next allegation, "UK and US blame Russia for the malicious NotPetya cyberattack" (headline on BBC). ..."
Feb 18, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

"Realist , February 17, 2018 at 3:27 pm

Essentially, all Mueller did yesterday was to indict a bunch of private Russian citizens for expressing their opinions about the candidates in the last presidential election via public media (mainly Facedbook and Twitter), and the individual Russians contacted by the press about it did not deny doing so. Mueller made no links to the Russian government, Putin, the FSB or even their alleged puppet Donald Trump. Just private individuals being persecuted for expressing an opinion on American politics in public because they are foreigners. Doesn't matter whether the opinions were true, false, complementary or disparaging because they were subjective just like anyone else's opinions (you know, opinions are like a-holes, everybody's got one).

So, if that move by Mueller is allowed to stand and serve as a precedent in American jurisprudence, doesn't that mean that journalists from foreign lands, like Caitlin herself, are at risk of being indicated at any moment by the US Justice Department if they express opinions that the insiders in the Deep State do not like? And, what about all the foreign nationals who post here in this forum on this blog? I daresay most offer opinions not complementary of the US government and its political menagerie. And, to be honest, many do so in order to either change minds or solidify shared beliefs with others, including great swirling drifts of snowflake Americans.

This free exchange of thoughts is now to be verboten because someone other than Uncle Sam may have an influence or even change the mind of a precious American citizen? This is madness. That the most educated and articulate amongst us do not see this, but rather participate in the feeding frenzy upon the carcass of what is left of our liberal democracy is absolutely stupifying. As I have been saying for some time now, someone or some force must be imposing a form of mass hypnosis upon the population and only a few of us (including most here) seem to be immune to its effects. Maybe something we consume acts as an antidote. Perhaps your Italian grandma's muffalettas or calzones, Joe? Or my mother's German rouladen?

Dave P. , February 17, 2018 at 5:01 pm

Realist –

"As I have been saying for some time now, someone or some force must be imposing a form of mass hypnosis upon the population and only a few of us (including most here) seem to be immune to its effects."

You are dead right on that. My wife was yelling and screaming last night that why I was not watching this "Russia trolls" show with her on CNN, MSNBC, and PBS; to learn how the Russians have destroyed our beautiful democracy. She had seen the World too, mostly for fun and experiences; she taught English in Malaysia – British colony until 1957 – as a peace Corps volunteer during 1960's. There you have it. As many commentators have pointed out, we are a country of completely brain washed people now. Schiff, Schumer, Sanders . . . they are all cut from the same cloth. There is not one politician left in the country who will challenge the The Ruling Power Structure's narrative. Even in Russia, there are lot of opposition leadership voices who are making noises against the System they disagree with.

Gregory Herr , February 17, 2018 at 6:21 pm

They can't make "hacking" stick 'cause it's false. They can't make "Trump is a Putin puppet" stick 'cause it's false. So now the whole damn dumb show–regurgitated by either shameless war profiteers or straight-faced useful idiots–comes down to so-called Russian social media trolls exercising the same "speech" that we are supposedly so proud to call "free" in this country. They not only take us for moronic fools, but they can't even see that that they are insulting us further by insinuating that our voting decisions are completely unsophisticated and easily swayed to the point that 13 Russians could have an impact amidst a sea of election season campaign "propaganda" from both major parties and an array of special interest influence peddling. Like the Clinton campaign didn't hire Facebook trolls!
Bye Bye First Amendment no one in the halls of power takes it seriously enough to defend it unless you're spouting groupthink right Bernie?

Zachary Smith , February 17, 2018 at 8:00 pm

Essentially, all Mueller did yesterday was to indict a bunch of private Russian citizens for expressing their opinions about the candidates in the last presidential election via public media (mainly Facedbook and Twitter), and the individual Russians contacted by the press about it did not deny doing so.

I'll echo Drew Hunkins in calling this a brilliant condensation of the issue. What worries me is what the morons-in-charge might have in mind as a follow-up to this lunacy.

CitizenOne , February 18, 2018 at 2:31 am

Perhaps we are entering into the Orwellian dawn of Thought Crimes which are any feelings or thinking a Citizen has which are counter to the State Propaganda put out by the Ministry of Truth. The Thought Police (thinkpol in Newspeak) are the secret police of the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four. It is their job to uncover and punish thoughtcrime. The Thought Police use surveillance and psychological monitoring to find and eliminate members of society who challenge the party's authority and ideology.

Anyone who has questioned the intelligence agencies narrative that Russians and Trump colluded to win the election are viewed with suspicion as potential enemies of the state.

It would appear to be allegations of thought crime because 15 foreign nationals posted things on social media. We have been under the perception that social media is a free forum for discourse but now, like China, we are seeing the formation of a witch hunt for foreign devils who have infiltrated the social mediascape and are on trial for the results of a national election.

We are literally burning some innocent teenager for the calamity we are convinced was not of our own making. We need to find a witch to brew some witchcraft to explain how our current situation has arisen.

Not sure if anyone alive today believes the Salem Witch Trials served justice and created a restoration of civil harmony. I'm fairly sure that everyone looks at those dark days as a travesty of justice.

Yes we are living in a time of universal deceit and the act of telling the truth has become a revolutionary act just as Orwell portrayed in his novel.

Thought crimes are fairly scary and they imply that our government is willing to indict the thoughts of whoever it deems to be an enemy of the state and bring the thinkers of thought crime as defined by the state as anyone who questions the official fake narrative of Russia Gate to "justice".

What is the end goal? The end goal is to prop up a long in the tooth multi-decade cold war with Russia to justify massive military spending. Do you want to know the answer to your question of whether or not the US defense industry and our intelligence agencies are trying to spark a war with Russia?

The answer is yes they are. As crazy as that sounds, the hungry defense industry with its insatiable appetite for more weapons has decided to go for the ultimate win the lottery strategy and foment war with Russia. It had been happening under Obama and now it is happening under Trump. They are trying to box him into a corner where he will feel enough pressure to go against Russia. Perhaps they can goad him into attacking Russia which is what I believe they want to do. Our national media plays along and is in bed with the intelligence agencies as much as ever just like they spouted the lies of Chalabi in Iraq War II falsely believing his claims that Saddam Hussein had nuclear and chemical and biological weapons.

Even the analysis on North Korea which opines that NK will use all weapons first as a first strike in a scenario the USA has called the "Use it or Lose it" fell short and was proved a false scenario or that there were really no actual WMDs in Iraq as the UN claimed.

Either way, the likely outcomes of a WMD armed Iraqi leader facing imminent demise which would cause him to use all available weapons at his disposal did not happen. There are only two conclusions to the outcome. Saddam did not have these weapons or the likely scenario of "Use it or Lose it" is all wrong.

Either way the premise of the war was shown to be false.

Unfortunately in the aftermath of that war there was no US counterpart to the British Chilcot Report and the US went on to engage in regime change in other nations like Ukraine, Syria, Libya and elsewhere.

There is no sense to it other than to destabilize nations, foment violence and create international tensions which have the effect of causing our elected leaders to pony up more money for defense to combat the new enemies we just created.

Yet still they want more as Caitlin Johnstone pointed out. What they want now to do is to do the same thing they have been doing under Obama and enlist Trump on the grandest military adventure of all. War with Russia.

I agree with her assessment that this is crazy. This is the most irresponsible thing yet but it has been enabled by a fake news press just as it was enabled by the fake news media all the times before.

I agree with you Joe that a form of mass hypnosis has gripped our democrat officials and a large segment of our population. We have been handed a leader they don't like and they are ready and able to make hay with the election outcome to persuade us by force to support more military adventures.

Dave P. , February 18, 2018 at 3:53 am

Citizen One –

"Yet still they want more as Caitlin Johnstone pointed out. What they want now to do is to do the same thing they have been doing under Obama and enlist Trump on the grandest military adventure of all. War with Russia."

I agree with her assessment that this is crazy. This is the most irresponsible thing yet but it has been enabled by a fake news press just as it was enabled by the fake news media all the times before."

Yes. This scenario is getting more and more likely. All steps point to that direction.

Skeptigal , February 17, 2018 at 11:10 pm

Unfortunately I'm not as confident. Here is the complete indictment at http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-43091945 . There are three counts (with almost 70 allegations): 1. Conspiracy to Defraud the United States 2. Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud And Bank Fraud and 3. Aggravated Identity Theft. It ends with a forfeiture allegation seeking property, real or personal from the defendants.

The Russiagate affair has been going on for almost a year and I would think Mueller is under a lot of pressure to find something to stick. This indictment may be it. Mueller will be the hero; Trump may be saved as the interference started in 2014, before his campaign began; the Hillary emails and Nunes memo will be cast aside; and the USA can say to the world "see I told you so."

Once again, Russia's reputation will be taken down a few notches and made to suffer another humiliation. And the US will move on to the next allegation, "UK and US blame Russia for the malicious NotPetya cyberattack" (headline on BBC).

Martin - Swedish citizen , February 18, 2018 at 1:15 am

If the allegations are true, they need to be put in perspective:
– what might be the rational behind? Eg tit-for-tat for Western meddling, arms race,
– do other nations engage in similar projects? What are the scale of those?

Starting in 2014 could it have been triggered by the Kiev coup and Nuland's was it five billion?

[Feb 18, 2018] The faction in the USA that seems to desperately want a nuclear war is now prosecuting people who opposed their candidate who virtually promised that nuclear war as a part of her campaign platform.

Notable quotes:
"... That "faction" is the trump regime (cough) justice department. They are who indicted the 13. Do the math. The trump regime is the "deep state". ..."
"... The 13 indictments were brought by Special Prosecutor Mueller. Due to Jeff Sessions recusal, he is answerable only to Deep State Globalist, Asst. AG Rod Rosenstein. 0% Trump involvement. ..."
"... The indictments are so sketchy they are almost certain to collapse. https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2018/02/16/asst-attorney-general-rod-rosenstein-announces-robert-muellers-russian-election-interference-indictments/ ..."
Feb 18, 2018 | thesaker.is

Anonymous on February 16, 2018 , · at 2:38 pm UTC

On a related note . it is now apparently illegal to have opposed the Deep State's candidacy of Hillary for President. 13 people indicted by the US prosecutors for "supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump and disparaging Hillary Clinton."

https://www.rt.com/news/419044-us-election-meddling-indicts/

The faction in the USA that seems to desperately want a nuclear war is now prosecuting people who opposed their candidate who virtually promised that nuclear war as a part of her campaign platform. Trying to save humanity is no defence apparently against charges that one interfered with the Deep State's plans for nuclear war.

Note, that this is not an isolated ruling. The people like priests and nuns who've protested against America's nuclear arsenal have had judges rule in court that arguments about the illegality of such programs (in violation of nuclear non-proliferation treaty) nor the immorality of planning to kill every living human and wipe out the human race are not permissible defenses to make against the charges filed against them.

Apparently one is now free to either die in a nuclear holocaust or to spend probably years in a US prison. The land of the free!

vot tak on February 16, 2018 , · at 5:00 pm UTC
"The faction in the USA that seems to desperately want a nuclear war is now prosecuting people who opposed their candidate who virtually promised that nuclear war as a part of her campaign platform."

That "faction" is the trump regime (cough) justice department. They are who indicted the 13. Do the math. The trump regime is the "deep state".

A123 on February 16, 2018 , · at 10:59 pm UTC
The 13 indictments were brought by Special Prosecutor Mueller. Due to Jeff Sessions recusal, he is answerable only to Deep State Globalist, Asst. AG Rod Rosenstein. 0% Trump involvement.

The indictments are so sketchy they are almost certain to collapse. https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2018/02/16/asst-attorney-general-rod-rosenstein-announces-robert-muellers-russian-election-interference-indictments/

[Feb 17, 2018] Empire actually don t know what Russia don t know or do know. It has to be noted that the Kremlin is very silent on this subject. May be becuase speaking of paranoiacs with mania of world domination is not such a good idea

Russia became a standard punch ball in the US political games. As in "Russia dog eat my homework."
Notable quotes:
"... This article is very important and outlines the destructive effort being done to Russia by the USA. It should be noted and clearly displayed by the psychopathic nature of USA meddling in Russian affairs. ..."
"... "With the current uproar about Russia interfering in the USA elections. It has to be noted that the Kremlin is very silent on this subject." ..."
"... It is extremely difficult and time consuming for an ordinary person to find the truth in the millions of pages on the Internet, the ordinary mushroom knowing that the MSM only serves you sh't and keeps you in the dark. ..."
"... Yea, just a common internet malpractice called spoofing, that any IT professional, especially one working in IT security, knows about. I suspected all along that most or all of this "Russian Hacking" and "Russians did it" was exactly that. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | thesaker.is

Nick on October 16, 2017 , · at 1:06 am UTC

With the current uproar about Russia interfering in the USA elections. It has to be noted that the Kremlin is very silent on this subject. It is more important now than ever to bring forth information from Russia in exposing how serious the problem is from the USA interfering in not only Russian affairs but how the intelligence community continues unabated in interfering in most countries.

This article is very important and outlines the destructive effort being done to Russia by the USA. It should be noted and clearly displayed by the psychopathic nature of USA meddling in Russian affairs.

One has to wonder why people cannot see how the current government of the USA is totally out of control around the world.

Everything has its cycle of life and the USA is no exception to this theory. When humanity is controlled in such a fashion, by that I mean that the USA is supported by the four pillars consisting of GREED, CORRUPTION, POWER and CONTROL. They are sitting on the top of these structures and are desperately trying to maintain their grip over the world.

smr on October 16, 2017 , · at 3:01 am UTC
"With the current uproar about Russia interfering in the USA elections. It has to be noted that the Kremlin is very silent on this subject."

thank goodness! Trying to reason with drunken punks is hopeless and makes you look like a fool yourself.

Anonymous on October 16, 2017 , · at 11:02 am UTC
Perhaps the purpose is to "open Russia" to debunk those silly "Kremlin hacking" claims and give Empire more important information inside Russia. E.g how to go deep through military security defense line.

Empire actually don't know what Russia don't know or do know. Is this chess where you have to sacrifice pawn or two or even knight to secure queen and king? Or why to shoot fly with cannon?

Den Lille Abe on October 16, 2017 , · at 7:47 pm UTC
"One has to wonder why people cannot see how the current government of the USA is totally out of control around the world." end quote.

It is extremely difficult and time consuming for an ordinary person to find the truth in the millions of pages on the Internet, the ordinary mushroom knowing that the MSM only serves you sh't and keeps you in the dark. The most reliable method (not 100 % though) is the "Follow the money" method, who has to gain by this or that development, but even that can lead to false conclusions. Always count on that everyone has a hidden agenda, but watch out you are not gripped by paranoia.

MarkinPNW on October 16, 2017 , · at 2:27 am UTC
Yea, just a common internet malpractice called spoofing, that any IT professional, especially one working in IT security, knows about. I suspected all along that most or all of this "Russian Hacking" and "Russians did it" was exactly that.
Tom Welsh on October 16, 2017 , · at 4:55 am UTC
What a pathetic waste of time. American society and government are really getting very low.

And, of course, reality is actually defined as "what you cannot change by speaking about it". You can change reality, a very little bit at a time, by doing honest physical work.

[Feb 17, 2018] The only member of Shaltay-Boltay left on the loose reveals details on their work

Notable quotes:
"... Much later, in mid-2013, the idea of Shaltay-Boltay appeared. ..."
"... Anikeev had sources of information, the information itself, important and interesting one. Anikeev decided to leave the information and analytical structure for which he had been working, and start his own project. ..."
"... His role has been greatly exaggerated. He's just our mutual old friend. When we were getting significant numbers of files that had to be processed, we would ask Teplyakov to help, for a fee. We knew him and trusted him. ..."
"... Just then, I was beginning to get annoyed with the country, I decided to go to Thailand. When I started discussing this project with Anikeev, it seemed okay: you could engage in an interesting and promising business from home. What did I expect in financial terms? Definitely not the sale of arrays of information. I was rather thinking about advertising or administration fee. Lite-version. ..."
"... All the information came from Anikeev. I published the received information, perhaps, by illegal means, but I have nothing to do with how it was obtained. Yesterday, I sent a letter to the former President of Estonia Toomas Hendrik Ilves. I think by our actions, especially in 2014, when we were working on the idea, I deserved asylum in Estonia. So far no response was received. ..."
"... The Anonymous International published a lot of information from the correspondence of officials and businessmen between 2014 and 2016. Among the disclosed information was Dmitry Medvedev's hacked Twitter, and e-mail, Facebook, iPhone and iPad of owner of NewsMedia Holding Aram Gabrellyanov; e-mail and WhatsApp of TV host Dmitry Kiselev, official correspondence between the employees of "Prosecutor's Office" and the "Ministry of State Security" of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, and a lot of other, equally interesting information. ..."
"... Before Anikeev's detention, Shaltay-Boltay also obtained the correspondence of the presidential assistant Vladislav Surkov. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | en.crimerussia.com

St. Petersburg programmer Alexander Glazastikov, who was hiding under the mask of Shaltay-Boltay (Humpty Dumpty), hoping for a political asylum reached out to the former President of Estonia. He is the only member of Anonymous International who remains at large.

Fontanka has been chasing the last Shaltay-Boltay member for a week. One member of the mysterious hacker group, which has been leaking e-mails of businessmen and officials for three years was found in Estonia, but shied away from a direct talk.

After the news came that Anonymous International members Vladimir Anikeev, Konstantin Teplyakov, and Filinov were arrested, it was not difficult to single out their colleague Alexander Glazastikov. The 'scary hackers' themselves, as it turned out, were quite unrestrained on social networks and left striking marks on the Internet.

Five days ago, Alexander Glazastikov gave an evasive answer to the straight question sent by Fontanka via e-mail. Three days ago, he admitted to being one of the Anonymous International on condition of anonymity. Then, he agreed to an interview saying "Come to Estonia".

When, on the arranged day, a Fontanka reporter arrived to Tartu, Alexander dropped a bombshell: "I'm on my way to Tallinn: already twenty kilometers away from Tartu." He suggested: "I can wait at the gas station Valmaotsa. Drive up, let's go together." It was the offer, from which one cannot refuse. A taxi was found quickly.

When the meeting took place, the Shaltay-Boltay member, who was easily recognizable due to the photos from the web, surprised the journalist once again: he silently passed him the ignition keys from the SUV. After a question, he explained: "You will have to drive, I was drinking beer while waiting." There wasn't much of a choice, and the correspondent of Fontanka drove the hackers group member to Tallinn to meet with the crew of Dozhd TV-channel and Ksenia Sobchak. 180 kilometers and two hours of time was enough to have a decent conversation.

- Alexander, you are probably the only member of the Anonymous International who managed to remain at large. You're in Estonia, the Russian justice is far away, can I call you by your name and surname?

- Perhaps, you can. Anyway, tomorrow or the day after, I will officially reach out to the authorities for a political asylum. The FSB already knows my name.

- They know the surname. And who are you in the Anonymous International: Shaltay or Boltay?

- Shaltay, Boltay ... what a mess. Initially, when starting this project, Shaltay-Boltay was supposed to be a spokesman for the Anonymous International. Mainly, I was doing this job. Then, Anikeev started introducing himself to the reporters as Lewis and got everyone confused.

- How many people initiated the Anonymous International?

- Me, Anikeev. Teplyakov helped with some things, but purely technical aspects.

- Who is Filinov, whose arrest was reported in connection with Shaltay-Boltay?

- I don't know the man. He was not involved in the creation of the Anonymous International. I think this is Anikeev's acquaintance, who accidentally got under the press. I've heard his name for the first time, when the media wrote about his arrest.

- Have you known Anikeev and Teplyakov for a long time?

- For a long time... There was a resource called Damochka.ru. When basically no social networks existed, and VKontakte only began to emerge, everyone was on this website, it was one of the most fun projects. In the real world, meetings of the website users were held, some users just organized those parties – Dima Gryzlov, Nikolai Bondarik, and Anikeev. That's how we met. Much later, in mid-2013, the idea of Shaltay-Boltay appeared.

- How? Did you just decide that you would steal e-mails of bad people?

- Anikeev had sources of information, the information itself, important and interesting one. Anikeev decided to leave the information and analytical structure for which he had been working, and start his own project.

- Could this project be called a business?

- It depends It was assumed that the project will bring substantial financial result, but initially it was made partly out of ideological considerations.

- But Anikeev is not a hacker at all, judging by the stories of his former colleagues.

- True. If he needed to install any software on the computer, he would usually ask me to do it.

- But Teplyakov is a programmer.

- His role has been greatly exaggerated. He's just our mutual old friend. When we were getting significant numbers of files that had to be processed, we would ask Teplyakov to help, for a fee. We knew him and trusted him.

- And why did you join this project?

- Just then, I was beginning to get annoyed with the country, I decided to go to Thailand. When I started discussing this project with Anikeev, it seemed okay: you could engage in an interesting and promising business from home. What did I expect in financial terms? Definitely not the sale of arrays of information. I was rather thinking about advertising or administration fee. Lite-version.

- With a reference to the investigation, there was information that Shaltay-Boltay has a whole network of agents with special equipment, who, at places popular among local officials, steal information by creating fake Wi-Fi connections. Do you have a network?

- Complete nonsense. There were discussions about getting to know technical possibilities like this. As far as I know, and I know a lot, in fact, we didn't have it.

- Where did you get the information from, then?

- From specialized hacking sites, one can order hacking someone else's e-mail box for a few thousand rubles.

- It worked successfully. If you remember 2014 was the most fruitful year. Serious stories, serious figures, and no commerce. Strelkov, Prigozhin...

- Out of the three years that the project existed, 2014 was the most significant. I am proud of that year.

- But, from 2015, the Anonymous International has become almost a purely commercial project. How much money did you manage to earn?

- Only one or two million dollars.

- So, you are now a rich man?

- No. Most of the money was spent on operating expenses, so to speak. There were about fifty boxes in the work. Plus, there were variants in which a transaction was made not via bitcoins, but with the help of Anikeev's friends; these intermediaries could ask for two thirds of the whole amount.

- Was there anyone above you and Anikeev? For several years, people have been wondering who Shaltay-Boltay works for?

- Funny. Everyone is looking for conspiracy, but, in fact, it was a 'quick and dirty' project made by me and Anikeev. However, at some point, in the summer or in the spring of 2016, Anikeev said that some person from the FSB found us, he knew our names. Allegedly, military counterintelligence was looking for us, but the FSB found our meadow attractive and decided to take control of our petty pranks. They, supposedly, were uninterested in the commercial part of the project: the scale was much bigger, but they wanted to supervise the project and to have the veto right. Mikhailov's name was not voiced, in fact, no one's was. Nothing, actually, happened: no one used the veto right and no one leaked any information. If these mysterious people existed at all. And who turned whom in: they – Anikeev or Anikeev – them, or even third force got them all, I do not know.

- How quickly did you find out about Anikeev's arrest?

- The next morning. He sent me a selfie from Pulkovo Airport, wrote that he checked in and flies to Minsk. The next morning, it was reported that he was arrested and transported to Moscow. Given the subsequent events, it could be the game of the FSB. Then, he contacted me, convinced that he solved all the issues and now works under the control of the FSB, called in me to Russia, but I didn't believe him for some reason.

- Did Teplyakov believe?

- Teplyakov, in the summer of 2016, moved from Thailand to Kiev. He had no permanent earnings, he depended on Anikeev. When the game was on, and it was claimed that the project would continue, but he needs to come to Russia and work there under supervision, for safety reasons, as well, Teplyakov didn't have much of a choice. He went to Russia.

- Is there somewhere a chest with Shaltay-Boltay's information?

- Good question. I need to think how to respond. Well no, not really. What was sold and purchased by the clients was deleted. What was sold was fairly deleted and this information doesn't exist anymore. Perhaps, some of our customers are now concerned about this question, but what was declared, was implemented. Some operative material that we had been working on, I also deleted. Maybe a couple of screenshots were left in the trash bin, but nothing more.

- Alexander, you're going to submit a request for a political asylum. Aren't you afraid that Estonians will simply put you in a cell? In this country, they are very sensitive to computer security, and the specificity of computer crimes lies in the fact that, for committing them, one can be prosecuted in almost any country?

- My position is that I was not personally involved in the cracking of passwords and sending malicious links. To me all that information was already delivered in an open form. Yes, it was, probably, stolen...

- So were you ordering its thefts or not?

- No.

- Who did, then?

- All the information came from Anikeev. I published the received information, perhaps, by illegal means, but I have nothing to do with how it was obtained. Yesterday, I sent a letter to the former President of Estonia Toomas Hendrik Ilves. I think by our actions, especially in 2014, when we were working on the idea, I deserved asylum in Estonia. So far no response was received.

We drove to Tallinn. More and more texts came to Alexander's telephone from Dozhd TV journalists, who were preparing to shoot with Ksenia Sobchak. After leaving the car in the parking lot, we said goodbye. Alexander Glazastikov promised to inform when he receives a reply from the Estonian government.

It is to be recalled that Glazastikov's colleagues from the Anonymous International are awaiting trial in a predetention center. The law enforcement agencies arrested Vladimir Anikeev and his two probable accomplices: Konstantin Teplyakov and Alexander Filinov. The latter two were arrested as early as November 2016, and, on February 1, the judge of the Lefortovo District Court of Moscow extended their detention until April. The alleged leader of the Anonymous International, who was acting under the nickname Lewis, was arrested on January 28 after a short time spent in the company of police officers; he confessed.

All three are charged with the crimes stipulated under part 3 of Art. 272 of the Russian Criminal Code (Illegal access to legally-protected computer information, which caused a major damage or has been committed because of vested interest or committed by a group of persons by previous concert through his/her official position).

Initially, the media associated their criminal case with the investigation on the FSB staff and the manager of the Kaspersky Lab, who were accused of treason, but later, the lawyer of one of the defendants denied this information.

The Anonymous International published a lot of information from the correspondence of officials and businessmen between 2014 and 2016. Among the disclosed information was Dmitry Medvedev's hacked Twitter, and e-mail, Facebook, iPhone and iPad of owner of NewsMedia Holding Aram Gabrellyanov; e-mail and WhatsApp of TV host Dmitry Kiselev, official correspondence between the employees of "Prosecutor's Office" and the "Ministry of State Security" of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, and a lot of other, equally interesting information.

Before Anikeev's detention, Shaltay-Boltay also obtained the correspondence of the presidential assistant Vladislav Surkov.

[Feb 17, 2018] Russia condemned and defined as the enemy of America with laughably little evidence (effing Facebook posts being about the extent of it) .... not a word about JEWISH MONEY controlling the entire political system in the USA. When Netanyahu gets 29 standing ovations from Congress should that not have triggered an FBI Investigation

Taking oil price to 30th or 40th is a strategic goal of the USA in relation to Russia. Listen at 3:30.
Notable quotes:
"... Appeasing interview with a shockingly cheap incompetent former CIA head Woolsey. If this man seriously represents the intellectual level of the CIA, then the USA will implode even faster than in ten years. ..."
"... You are exactly right. U$ politicians are uninformed, stupid, detached from reality, selfish and they think like schoolyard kids do. ..."
"... They are the product of the US society as a whole. ..."
"... Craig Murray nailed this issue stone dead for all time a few years ago, when he wrote:"[neo]liberal interventionism, the theory that bombing brown people is good for them". ..."
"... In the former The Ukraine, the Jewish Quisling oligarch dictator, Poroshenko, has been appointing foreigners to positions of power (SackOfShvilli is but one). He supported this by stating: "Ukrainians are too corrupt to rule themselves." When will we in America hear such a statement from our leaders to justify the appointment of Jews and paid Judaeophiles to all positions of power? ..."
"... I'm just waiting for Yevgeny Prigozhin to hold a press conference in Russia to claim that Hillary Clinton paid him to run the Internet Research Agency to besmirch her opponent- watch the fireworks :) It's all a hall of mirrors. ..."
"... The Internet Research Agency couldn't have possibly been more ineffective, which points to it's main purpose being to besmirch Trump (more more likely it was just an unimportant hobby of Prigozhin). ..."
"... Sure the United States has, they have been doing it since 1953 with the overthrow of Iran, to as recently as 2012 Russian Election, 2014 Ukraine Election, the UK referendum on 23 June 2016 on Brexit and currently trying to overthrow it this year. These are just a few and there is a very long list of other countries also. The United States in now in Russia and Hungry today meddling it their elections. Got to get the right people in office so they will cow-tow to the United States. ..."
"... What an admission! trump doesn't want more drilling for oil to Americans to use. It is for export and for foreign interference ..."
"... and if the price of oil would go down to 30/40$ that would make a unhappy input and so would be the saudis and you fracking industry would go down the toilet and thy will drag the banks with them. What a moron. And US oil companies would like that alot too ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | theduran.com

Gano1 , February 17, 2018 10:31 AM

The USA has lost all morality, they are so hypocritical it is risible.

Patricia Dolan , February 17, 2018 10:25 AM

What Russian expansionism??? Look at the US expansionism..........get a grip!

Ann Johns Patricia Dolan , February 17, 2018 2:51 PM

Another tiresome, butthurt yank/wank? Between the new One Belt, One Road Chinese initiative, the Russians taking control of ME oil production and the fact that america has NO answers to help it's declining empire, it would seem to the non-partisan observer that america is well and truly f***ed. You must be talking about their debt expansionism, $20 TRILLION and rising by the second.

Vera Gottlieb Patricia Dolan , February 17, 2018 2:29 PM

US expansionism...really? Where? 😜

Mario8282 Vera Gottlieb , February 17, 2018 2:58 PM

Syria? Libya? Yemen? Africa, Afgh...

Vera Gottlieb Mario8282 , February 17, 2018 3:00 PM

And you left out Latin America...

Mario8282 Vera Gottlieb , February 17, 2018 3:05 PM

This is why I left with the dots... The list would end up with America itself (an endless spree of false flags and deception schemes).

Patricia Dolan Mario8282 , February 17, 2018 6:11 PM

Thank you Mario......let's not forget Ukraine, Kosovo, Bosnia, the entirety of eastern Europe, the entirety of northern Africa, Rwanda, the Congo, Venezuela, Chili, Guatemala, Panama, Jeeeeeeeze etc......

Patricia Dolan Vera Gottlieb , February 17, 2018 6:07 PM

get a grip......and turn your TV off!

Terry Ross Patricia Dolan , February 17, 2018 6:08 PM

'twas sarcasm Patricia.

Patricia Dolan Terry Ross , February 17, 2018 6:18 PM

I guess the WINKS need to be LARGER!!!! LOL

ThereisaGod , February 17, 2018 10:05 AM

Russia condemned and defined as the enemy of America with laughably little evidence (effing Facebook posts being about the extent of it) .... not a word about JEWISH MONEY controlling the entire political system in the USA. When Netanyahu gets 29 standing ovations from Congress should that not have triggered an FBI "Investigation"? Nah ... nothing happening there. It is breathtaking that THIS is the Alice-In-Wonderland world we inhabit.

Ton Jacobs, Human Guardians , February 17, 2018 10:02 AM

Appeasing interview with a shockingly cheap incompetent former CIA head Woolsey. If this man seriously represents the intellectual level of the CIA, then the USA will implode even faster than in ten years.

christianblood Ton Jacobs, Human Guardians , February 17, 2018 12:32 PM

(...If this man seriously represents the intellectual level of the CIA, then the USA will implode even faster than in ten years...)

You are exactly right. U$ politicians are uninformed, stupid, detached from reality, selfish and they think like schoolyard kids do.

Jesse Marioneaux christianblood , February 17, 2018 12:43 PM

They are the product of the US society as a whole.

christianblood Jesse Marioneaux , February 17, 2018 12:57 PM

They indeed are! U$A! U$A! U$A!

tom , February 17, 2018 11:14 AM

Craig Murray nailed this issue stone dead for all time a few years ago, when he wrote:"[neo]liberal interventionism, the theory that bombing brown people is good for them".

journey80 , February 17, 2018 12:37 PM

Yeah, that's hilarious. Join the murdering creep in a giggle, Laura, that's cute. Here's a global criminal who should have been hung years ago for crimes against humanity. No one in their right mind would treat this creep with anything but contempt and horror, let alone find him funny.

Franz Kafka , February 17, 2018 12:17 PM

In the former The Ukraine, the Jewish Quisling oligarch dictator, Poroshenko, has been appointing foreigners to positions of power (SackOfShvilli is but one). He supported this by stating: "Ukrainians are too corrupt to rule themselves." When will we in America hear such a statement from our leaders to justify the appointment of Jews and paid Judaeophiles to all positions of power?

journey80 Franz Kafka , February 17, 2018 12:34 PM

We don't need to hear it, we're living it.

Franz Kafka journey80 , February 17, 2018 3:33 PM

My profound and sincere condolences. You are getting the 'Democracy Treatment' by the West. I hope some of you survive to tell the tale and take revenge.

Franz Kafka , February 17, 2018 12:09 PM

Are those ears or bat-wings? WOW! Yet another Jewe, pretending not be be. I guess he would say that the USA murdered all the Indians and enslaved Africans 'for their own good' as well.
Talmudo-Satanism is the pernicious underlying ideology of the people who have taken over, not just the USA, but, lets face it, the entire West.

Vera Gottlieb , February 17, 2018 2:28 PM

What a bunch of ingrates we are...not appreciating all that the CIA is doing for us. We must thank them instead of complaining.

Trauma2000 , February 17, 2018 5:30 PM

Lets not forget that the U.$.A. meddled in Australia's election of the Whitlam Government. (And several governments there after as soon as they realised they could get away with it an nothing would happen to them). The United States are a bunch of sick puppies; really sick puppies the way they have treated Australia.

So much for being allies. With allies like the United States you don't need enemies (Unless the U.$. doctors them up for you to force you to pay them more money for weapons and protection).

And it makes me sick that so many 'naive' people around the world keep falling for the SH*T that comes out of their mouths.

When dealing with the United States there are a few rules to follow. (Apologies to the innocent Americans out there but 'they' allow their government to do some unspeakable horrors to the world.)

And that goes for the entire planet no matter who the United States is speaking to.

End of story.

Shue Trauma2000 , February 17, 2018 5:51 PM

Worst part is the our Gov can't think ahead, if they keep antagonising China on behalf of the Seppo's China will eventually pull their mineral imports and our economy will crash overnight.

HappyCynic , February 17, 2018 4:31 PM

Yes, nobody doubts that the US interferes with elections in other countries - we're the good guys, so this is ok :)

I'm just waiting for Yevgeny Prigozhin to hold a press conference in Russia to claim that Hillary Clinton paid him to run the Internet Research Agency to besmirch her opponent- watch the fireworks :) It's all a hall of mirrors.

The Internet Research Agency couldn't have possibly been more ineffective, which points to it's main purpose being to besmirch Trump (more more likely it was just an unimportant hobby of Prigozhin).

John R Balch Jr , February 17, 2018 6:31 PM

Sure the United States has, they have been doing it since 1953 with the overthrow of Iran, to as recently as 2012 Russian Election, 2014 Ukraine Election, the UK referendum on 23 June 2016 on Brexit and currently trying to overthrow it this year. These are just a few and there is a very long list of other countries also. The United States in now in Russia and Hungry today meddling it their elections. Got to get the right people in office so they will cow-tow to the United States.

Graeme Pedersen , February 17, 2018 6:11 PM

I believe john Key was sent from the U$A (Merrill Lynch) to ruin our economy in New Zealand as well.

janbn , February 17, 2018 5:37 PM

What an admission! trump doesn't want more drilling for oil to Americans to use. It is for export and for foreign interference.

Aidi Deduction , February 17, 2018 4:51 PM

Frederick the Great concluded that to allow governments to be dominated by the majority would be disastrous: "A democracy, to survive, must be, like other governments a minority persuading a majority to let itself be led by a minority."

General Kreeg , February 17, 2018 4:13 PM

Russian Trolls are all of a sudden the Russian Gov't.

fredd , February 17, 2018 3:18 PM

and if the price of oil would go down to 30/40$ that would make a unhappy input and so would be the saudis and you fracking industry would go down the toilet and thy will drag the banks with them. What a moron. And US oil companies would like that alot too

Mario8282 , February 17, 2018 2:56 PM

...and the US bombed half of the world's countries for their own good too. US made Libya a slave market for humanity's good as well. Oboomer even got the Nobel Peace Prize for it.

K Walker , February 17, 2018 2:55 PM

I would be greatly relieved if the USA government merely tweeted instead of invading and indulging in regime change.

Kevin S , February 17, 2018 12:55 PM

Talk about the pinnacle of hypocrisy!

[Feb 17, 2018] The US people swallowed the hogwash about Kremlin disinformation trolls working to undermine the West's irrepressible belief in itself

Notable quotes:
"... . As usual, the most appropriate response amounts to contemptuous, refined amusement ..."
"... It's not as though we have a lack of ludicrous, ridiculous material. As the inventor of this site once described, how did the people in the late-era Soviet Union fight their declining regime? Jokes. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | thesaker.is

Nussiminen on October 18, 2017 , · at 3:20 pm UTC

Frankly, I don't really see too big a problem with people swallowing the hogwash about "Kremlin disinformation trolls" working to undermine the West's irrepressible belief in itself. As usual, the most appropriate response amounts to contemptuous, refined amusement:

"They seem to know indeed what they are talking about -- well worth their salary for doing honest work."

If you cannot change the Weltanschau of Ziomedia addicts, then at least you're fully entitled to have some fun at the slobs' expense.

Internal Exile USA on October 19, 2017 , · at 9:20 pm UTC
Absolutely, humor is one of the best weapons around. The more pompous a person is, the more they hate being dropped down to size. Pop goes the balloon of hot air.

Humor has probably woken more people up than any other method.

It's not as though we have a lack of ludicrous, ridiculous material. As the inventor of this site once described, how did the people in the late-era Soviet Union fight their declining regime? Jokes.

[Feb 17, 2018] A Brief History of the Kremlin Trolls The Vineyard of the Saker

Notable quotes:
"... Out of nowhere, my gentleman acquaintance brought up the topic of the day: Russia hacking the elections. The more things change, the more they are not the same anymore. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | thesaker.is

Scott on October 17, 2017 · at 3:03 pm UTC

to Mujo

That's what my research is about, despite Ivan Pavlov's defense denying the connection between the Shaltay-Boltay group and former FSB officers convicted for treason. https://en.crimerussia.com/gromkie-dela/defendant-in-high-treason-case-personally-detained-shaltay-boltay-s-leader-/

But that's what a good defense is for, to deny.

Treason is very serious charge that includes working for foreign governments intelligence services. I believe I have enough to prove my point, using, of course, only information openly available on the internet. However, if these people worked for SBU or Mossad, I will write about this, also.

See also, Arrested Russian FSB Agents Allegedly Passed Information to CIA

http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/01/31/arrested-russian-fsb-agents-allegedly-passed-information-to-cia-trump-putin/ https://www.cbsnews.com/news/russia-treason-fsb-spies-kaspersky-labs-us-intelligence-denies-cia-hacking/ https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jan/31/russian-cybersecurity-experts-face-treason-charges-cia https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/01/26/report-arrested-russian-intel-officer-allegedly-spied-us/97094696/ https://www.rbth.com/politics_and_society/2017/02/02/fsb-officers-charged-with-treason-media-claim-cia-ties_693641

You wrote "(2) Why did they defect from the FSB to join the CIA? Do we have any insight on this?"

Maybe they defected, or maybe they started working there after being recruited by the foreign intelligence services. We will find out. ­

Mujo on October 18, 2017 , · at 5:58 am UTC

Scott,

Thanks for these follow-up links -- very helpful.

I also found this interview with Alexander Glazastikov (Humpty), which you have probably read:

The only member of Shaltay-Boltay left on the loose reveals details on their work

As described by various media sources, the basic story about Shaltay-Boltay is that they formed in mid-2013 to hack e-mail, social media, and data of officials and businessmen in Russia, and then sold this data for large amounts of money through the digital underground. In particular, this happened through a portal called "Exchange of Information", a kind of anonymous auction site for stolen data. Glazastikov says Shaltay-Boltay "was supposed to be a spokesman for the Anonymous International", and was created by himself, Vladimir Anikeev, and Konstantin Teplyakov.

Although most all of the Western media sources insinuate some connection between Shaltay-Boltay, the FSB officers who were arrested, and the putative "hacking" of the 2016 U.S. election, Glazastikov denies any interest in targets outside Russia.

There is also disagreement around the connection between Shaltay-Boltay and the FSB. Glazastikov says that the FSB contacted him, saying they were aware of Shaltay-Boltay's activity, and wanted to assert "control" and veto power in exchange for not arresting them. Russia Beyond claims that it was Sergei Mikhailov (FSB) who took control of Shaltay-Boltay and "received kickbacks from its founder, Vladimir Anikeyev". However, Glazastikov's testimony contradicts that of Anikeev, his lawyer (Ruslan Koblev), and Ivan Pavlov, lawyer for one of the FSB defendants, all of whom deny any working relationship between Shaltay-Boltay and the FSB.

Interestingly, Glazastikov notes that neither Anikeev nor Teplyakov had technical expertise. Moreover, Glazastikov makes it sound like even he was not primarily involved in hacking, and the "Exchange of Information" admins claim no connection with Shaltay-Boltay. For the heavy lifting, Shaltay-Boltay would use "specialized hacking sites" where they outsourced pay-to-order hacks with IT mercenaries. A target e-mail address could be hacked for a few thousand rubles. And even this, Glazastikov states, wasn't really the original idea for Shaltay-Boltay. Instead, he imagined they would be doing "advertising or administration fee".

Perhaps more significantly, it has more recently been claimed that members of Shaltay-Boltay have admitted to forging some parts of the correspondence that they hacked. The putative aim was to boost the profile of their group.

Reading between the lines of this, I find more support for Scott's angle on this story. Shaltay-Boltay were indeed not hackers in a conventional sense. They were traders in an illicit information economy, and apparently weren't above fabricating that information if it would raise their profile. For the extent and nature of that fabrication, i look forward to Scott's next report!

Internal Exile USA on October 17, 2017 , · at 4:29 pm UTC
This is incredible research, you put most YTube new journalists to shame. I hope this material makes its way into your next book. "Enemy of the State" is an instant classic full of insights on how to live life that are a soothing balm to children of the Sick West with senses of humor somewhat intact.

On the east coast of the U.S., the mundane worlds of the Masters of (their imagined) Universe can be seen fairly easily, especially if you wander into places and act like you belong there.

Regarding the kinds of people that instigate the madness you describe above: I recently had the opportunity to visit a very interesting social club that was opened to the public for one day only. Three Ivy league schools I'm sure you've heard of. On the walls upstairs were listed all the latest presidents in different colors, like red for an "H" school: Obama, Clinton, Bush II, Bush I . Kennedy John Quincy Adams, etc. I can't remember Nixon or Carter being there, but I talked to someone who's name is on another wall, and it struck me that members of this club did not hate Trump because of his manners, parents, background, politics, or alleged business acumen. Instead, they hated the fact that his name couldn't be written on their wall. It's really only acceptable to be President if you've been BMOC at Harvard.

Out of nowhere, my gentleman acquaintance brought up the topic of the day: Russia hacking the elections. The more things change, the more they are not the same anymore.

There were pictures of famous football teams from years gone by, the place had a charm but it was shabby, and the ceiling looked like sprayed styrafoam, an aesthetic disgrace that these imaginary jocks failed to appreciate. The drinks, by the way, were terrible. They must make their highballs with Minute Maid. The creativity and intelligence, not to mention taste of the West are surely at a low ebb.

[Feb 17, 2018] Comment Set Free: the Mueller indictment

Notable quotes:
"... What this guy did (who is not "Putin's Chef", a term that uses the ever-favorite smear of putting something next to Putin to make people think there is guilt among both parties) is what every sleazy purveyor of fake profiles and fake likes does. If you have done any work in marketing or social platforms, you will have seen dozens of the same outfits. ..."
"... They're also happy to sell you ads that will target these fake people, pocketing the cash without achieving any results for the business owner buying the ads. Meanwhile, the US Cointelpro operation continues, masquerading as an actual investigatio ..."
"... Of course the New York Times and Washington Post have reacted to this like US Cavalry coming to the rescue in the last reel of a 1950's B-movie by demanding that Trump apologizes and accepts that their stories about Russian interference in the elections, were true and had nothing to do with 'fake news.' How convenient for them! After all this time, this is what Mueller can come up with, give me a break! ..."
"... Maybe they should sue Mueller for libel, go on the offensive? So Mueller's accusations are 'free', cause he knows the Russians can't really reply. It's a kind of smear. ..."
"... And what about conflating 'Russians' with 'Russia' all the time? A hacker or troll living in Russia doesn't represent 'Russia.' There's this ghastly wave of hysteria sweeping the United States and it's dangerous. ..."
"... With this indictment: Rod Rosenstein has come clean and delivered on solemn oath that the entire Russiagate farrago is baseless and evidence free. The only thing he has truly indicted is the obvious and continually developing disassociation of the American ruling class psyche from reality. ..."
"... "'We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality." ..."
"... An empire of unreality that can no longer be connected to the experiential, discernible and true. Such men are the architects of the demise of the dominant culture of lies? ..."
"... "a grand jury would 'indict a ham sandwich,' if that's what you wanted." – Sol Wachtler ..."
"... Well, they (Cocaine Importing Authority) do have history ..."
"... I personally know almost all pro-Russian English-speakers that have an influence on English language alternative and social media. None of them are Russians. If they ever were, they emigrated decades ago. There is no one that can translate Russian talking points from Russian society and media into the English speaking world. ..."
"... When will we discover who in Britain gave Steele authority to send his Dossier to the Clinton campaign? He needed that approval because the information was gleaned when in post as the Head of the Russian Desk of MI6 in quite recent times, apart from the normal requirements of the Official Secrets Act. Given that MI6 are an Intelligence Agency it's fair to assume they knew the Dossier's destination and the purpose to which it was to be put. Wasn't that interfering in the US election? ..."
"... The absurdity is that America spends billions on doing exactly these sort of things. $5 billion on Ukraine before pulling off the coup, according to Nuland. But that's just a crumb of the total mis-information cake. It's what the CIA spends most of its time doing! ..."
"... Since 1992, the government has spent about $5.1 billion to support democracy-building programs in Ukraine, Thompson said, with money flowing mostly from the Department of State via U.S. Agency for International Development, as well as the departments of Defense, Energy, Agriculture and others. The United States does this with hundreds of other countries. ..."
"... About $2.4 billion went to programs promoting peace and security, which could include military assistance, border security, human trafficking issues, international narcotics abatement and law enforcement interdiction, Thompson said. More money went to categories with the objectives of "governing justly and democratically" ($800 million), "investing in people" ($400 million), economic growth ($1.1 billion), and humanitarian assistance ($300 million). ..."
"... The descriptions are a bit vague, which could lead people to think the money was used for some clandestine purpose. ..."
"... But let's be clear, by "democracy building programs" they mean sending in NGOs to promote the "values" of austerity and debt, and they mean funding candidates for elections approved by the IMF because they have agreed to promote austerity and debt. They aren't promoting democracy, they are promoting the western political belief system. They are also acting to disenfranchise and discredit people who don't support this system. Just as Yeltsin in Russia, so Yarushenko, Yatseniuk & Poroshenko in Ukraine – men prepare to tank the standard of living for ordinary people and asset-strip the country. ..."
"... An indictment is simply an accusation. Since all 13 (what a magical number) of these people are in Russia, and there's no extradition agreement with Russia, they will never be able to get a trial to exonerate themselves. ..."
"... Meanwhile, Clinton was running a fraudulent charity and accepted 145 million dollars in "donations" from Russian Banks. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | off-guardian.org

David C. Lee (@worldblee) says February 18, 2018

Indeed, b was one this in 2017 as well.

What this guy did (who is not "Putin's Chef", a term that uses the ever-favorite smear of putting something next to Putin to make people think there is guilt among both parties) is what every sleazy purveyor of fake profiles and fake likes does. If you have done any work in marketing or social platforms, you will have seen dozens of the same outfits.

I've even seen them in operation, delivering tons of fake followers and such. The goal is straight up sleazy commerce, and it should be noted that ALL the social platforms, especially Facebook, not only tolerate this but turn a blind eye as it makes their platform appear to have more users than it actually does.

They're also happy to sell you ads that will target these fake people, pocketing the cash without achieving any results for the business owner buying the ads. Meanwhile, the US Cointelpro operation continues, masquerading as an actual investigation.

MichaelK says February 17, 2018
More dreadful stuff from the Guardian's conspiracy farm https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/feb/17/putins-chef-a-troll-farm-and-russias-plot-to-hijack-us-democracy

It's a really awful sign of the times we live in, when the Guardian, supposedly a beacon of truth and true liberal, left-of-centre values, is so eager to swallow stuff like this latest report from Mueller on face value alone without any examination of the wider internal US context; the people and forces Mueller represent.

MichaelK says February 17, 2018
Of course the New York Times and Washington Post have reacted to this like US Cavalry coming to the rescue in the last reel of a 1950's B-movie by demanding that Trump apologizes and accepts that their stories about Russian interference in the elections, were true and had nothing to do with 'fake news.' How convenient for them! After all this time, this is what Mueller can come up with, give me a break!

It's all so pathetic. There's no way these Russians will receive a fair trial in the US, even if they decided to turn up for a hearing. Maybe they should sue Mueller for libel, go on the offensive? So Mueller's accusations are 'free', cause he knows the Russians can't really reply. It's a kind of smear.

And what about conflating 'Russians' with 'Russia' all the time? A hacker or troll living in Russia doesn't represent 'Russia.' There's this ghastly wave of hysteria sweeping the United States and it's dangerous. What's appalling is how the left/liberal press, typified by the ghastly Guardian, goes along with it all, without a murmur of protest, criticism or real searching analysis.

intergenerationaltrauma says February 17, 2018
The title and description of the linked article is right from the Time Magazine web site:

(( Yanks to the Rescue: the Secret Story of How American Advisors Helped Yeltsin Win ))

article description from Time's site –

"THE SECRET STORY OF HOW FOUR U.S. ADVISERS USED POLLS, FOCUS GROUPS, NEGATIVE ADS AND ALL THE OTHER TECHNIQUES OF AMERICAN CAMPAIGNING TO HELP BORIS YELTSIN WIN"

https://ccisf.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/201612201405.pdf

This is how you really "rig an election" to get "your puppet" into power in a foreign nation.

Binra (@onemindinmany) says February 17, 2018
What we do 'in secret' we must expect to be secretly arraigned against us, and the knowledge that we do such thinks enforces the conviction the 'Other' is a deceiver, whatever they say or do. Because such is our own false witness.
Big B says February 17, 2018
With this indictment: Rod Rosenstein has come clean and delivered on solemn oath that the entire Russiagate farrago is baseless and evidence free. The only thing he has truly indicted is the obvious and continually developing disassociation of the American ruling class psyche from reality.

"'We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality."

An empire of unreality that can no longer be connected to the experiential, discernible and true. Such men are the architects of the demise of the dominant culture of lies?

TJ says February 17, 2018
"a grand jury would 'indict a ham sandwich,' if that's what you wanted." – Sol Wachtler

Grand Jury indicts Yevgeny V. Prigozhin of Concord Catering, that among other things does school meals such as ham sandwiches.

The USA is a farce, wrapped in a satire, inside a parody.

Kaiama says February 17, 2018
https://thesaker.is/a-brief-history-of-the-kremlin-trolls/

The best article on the "trolls" is here.

Mikalina says February 17, 2018
Well, they (Cocaine Importing Authority) do have history ..
MLS says February 18, 2018
Well the fact you find it per se impossible the CIA would run a fake "Russian troll" outfit says more about your utter naivety than anything else. I'm not completely convinced that is what is going on in Savushkina Street. I think MoA is closer in pointing out it's just a slightly dodgy internet marketing outfit who are paid to say nice or nasty things about a whole range of things, mostly non-political.

http://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/02/mueller-indictement-the-russian-influence-is-a-commercial-marketing-scheme.html#more

mathiasalexander says February 17, 2018
Have you noticed how nearly everybody in charge of the Amerikan state is past retirement age?
vexarb says February 17, 2018
@Matthias. Same fate for Britain in brilliant 1985 film Brazil. "Can you help me totter to the loo, young man?"
rtj1211 says February 17, 2018
Well we had Goldman Sachs CEO splashed all over the BBC website demanding UK remain in EU. After the Referendum. We had The Black Dude threatening to send us to the back of the queue if we were not subservient little vassals voting Remain. That was Headline News too. None of us asked the Black Dude to interfere in Our Referendum, but he did it anyway, because America does what it wants and everyone else gets indicted if they do the same thing back.

Just ask yourselves this: if you had a mad dog fascist HillaryBilly campaigning for US President saying: ' NUKE (insert your nation's name HERE)!', you would just sit by and say, 'Oh, none of my business'.

Basic lesson to subnormal, cretinous Yanks: as soon as your election campaigns on foreign wars, foreign blockades, foreign threats to nation state sovereignty, it is no longer just your business. Any politician eho says otherwise, in fact any Yank who says otherwise, has lost all right to human rights. Why? Because you have said that the right to safety within a doctrine of self-determination for the rest of the world does not exist without kissing America's ass .

Stop treating Americans as anything other than violent, psychopathic cretins who should be incarcerated for the safety of the world.

It is pointless treating them as human beings when they never behave like human beings ..

Binra (@onemindinmany) says February 17, 2018
I treat others as I would in truth be treated, not as a result of any set of rules of 'deservability' made in my mind or acquired from any other, but because such is a core sanity of being that does not give worthship to hate and thereby become the think it hates.
Oh I can feel hateful feelings – but these are MINE. and as mine they are in my power to release, rather than be defined and driven by.
So I appreciate your points, but not your personal result.

The elites operate on this sort of thinking: "It is pointless treating them as human beings when they never behave like human beings ."
WHO defines what is a human being and how they 'should' behave? A set of rules?

I agree that cause and consequence belong together – for only in recognising and accepting consequence can we reconnect with true cause – and so cause a different life than an attempt to deny and displace consequence to 'others' deemed unlike our self.

Power class operates (manipulates) its population while people use others (manipulate) to evade their own responsibilities ie they give power away in exchange for what they get, or believe they have got rid of. For example, they have got rid of guilt by assigning blame to others who failed to act as their 'rules' required. Except the results of guilt are still active in their own minds and bodies and not in those who 'fail us'.

Manipulation in a pure sense would be for example holding a tool correctly so as to attain the desired result, but in the sense of manipulative deceit, it holds the consciousness in distortion so as to achieve a wished for result.

Manipulative thinking – not Americans – runs the global agenda – and whatever agencies serve purpose, including the USA. It does so while conferring some sense of power and protection, in self specialness.

If you are too angry to read and consider, that's ok. But to assign it to a blanket blaming of Americans as unworthy of their humanity is playing the 'god' of vengeance. Perhaps this 'god' is the nature of the Beast.

Playing 'god' is the attempt to make reality be as your own Word defines. The lack of support, encountered rejection and sense of betrayal that follows is the 'wound' of a terror that generates the 'god' of rage as power and protection.

With regard to 'headline news', what ISN'T a psyop?

Mikalina says February 17, 2018
Whilst I fully appreciate the wisdom in removing the log from your own eye before you touch the splinter in someone else's eye, there comes a time when you have to take the f***er out.
writerroddis says February 17, 2018
What, all Americans? The problem, surely, is America's ruling class (definition available on request).
Petri Krohn says February 17, 2018
THE "INTERNET RESEARCH AGENCY" IS A HOAX

Mueller's indictment rests on the false claim that the suspended 'Russia-connected' Twitter and Facebook accounts were controlled by a non-existent company and 13 Russian individuals in Saint Petersburg. The only thing that connects the anonymous U.S. accounts to Russia or the hoax " Internet Research Agency " is that they may have used some Russian VPN service to hide their identities from NSA and FBI spies.

Twitter and Facebook self suspended the accounts based on some connection to Russia, including use of Russian IP addresses or Cyrillic letters in administrator names. They had no way of knowing if all accounts were controlled from a single "troll factory" or if that troll factory was operated by a company named "Internet Research Agency". (If they had such information, they would have said so.)

The whole thing is hoax. It is impossible for Russians to impersonate American internet personalities, when they are unable to speak up in English under their own names. Russia does not have the people and skills needed to maintain English language accounts that would influence and resonate among the American audience and electorate – yet alone do this at a minimum wage in a "troll factory" sweatshop.

I personally know almost all pro-Russian English-speakers that have an influence on English language alternative and social media. None of them are Russians. If they ever were, they emigrated decades ago. There is no one that can translate Russian talking points from Russian society and media into the English speaking world.

DiD says February 17, 2018
The amerikans will be relying on the Russians never getting their day in an open court. Can't have a repetition of the George Galloway business see here now can we?

The 'grand' jury process is even more corrupt deceitful and one sided than so called senate inquiries. At least with shit hurled from the hill, a bloke does eventually get the opportunity to speak against the allegations – albeit in a controlled environment where the accuser chairs the meeting, but a Grand Jury, which is similarly controlled by the prosecutor, provides no room for a defense argument.

The carefully hand selected 'jurors' unlike amerika's senators, most of whom are graduates of amerika's prestigious law schools, lack any legal training.

The law they are charged with investigating breaches of, is complex, riven with contradictory precedents and completely outside any retired contractor's area of expertise. So they rely on the prosecutor to tell em what's what.

amerikans are forthright in their condemnation of everyone else's legal system but the amerikan one has to be the most corrupt power serving travesty known to man.

Ask J. Assange who lives under the shadow of a so-called 'sealed indictment' which he's not even meant to know exists, much less what is contained in it and what deceits have been told by alleged 'co-conspirators' aka jailhouse snitches.

Assange will find out should he ever be kidnapped and abducted to amerika and held in solitary isolation under the 1917 espionage act – otherwise like many others including hundreds who have never even set foot in that arsehole of the universe, the us, also stitched up by grand jury, he must live in ignorance of the accusations and with no right of reply.

summitflyer says February 17, 2018
Thank you for the link to George Galloway's interrogation. He sure told them in no uncertain terms. The US justice system seems to be corrupt beyond redemption. So glad I don't live there and feel sorry for the ones that do to be honest.
Paul says February 17, 2018
When will we discover who in Britain gave Steele authority to send his Dossier to the Clinton campaign? He needed that approval because the information was gleaned when in post as the Head of the Russian Desk of MI6 in quite recent times, apart from the normal requirements of the Official Secrets Act. Given that MI6 are an Intelligence Agency it's fair to assume they knew the Dossier's destination and the purpose to which it was to be put. Wasn't that interfering in the US election?
Big B says February 17, 2018
Former intel analyst and regular UK Column guest, Alex Thomson, named Sir Richard Dearlove (he of dodgy dossier No1, seems to have had a hand in dodgy dossier N02?) However, I can't find the exact day or time for reference.
Paul says February 17, 2018
The absurdity is that America spends billions on doing exactly these sort of things. $5 billion on Ukraine before pulling off the coup, according to Nuland. But that's just a crumb of the total mis-information cake. It's what the CIA spends most of its time doing!
Matt says February 17, 2018
That $5 billion figure has been debunked.

Politifact directly asked the State Department and looked at public information released by the U.S. government since 2009 to sample what the money was spent on:

http://www.politifact.com/punditfact/statements/2014/mar/19/facebook-posts/united-states-spent-5-billion-ukraine-anti-governm/

Since 1992, the government has spent about $5.1 billion to support democracy-building programs in Ukraine, Thompson said, with money flowing mostly from the Department of State via U.S. Agency for International Development, as well as the departments of Defense, Energy, Agriculture and others. The United States does this with hundreds of other countries.

About $2.4 billion went to programs promoting peace and security, which could include military assistance, border security, human trafficking issues, international narcotics abatement and law enforcement interdiction, Thompson said. More money went to categories with the objectives of "governing justly and democratically" ($800 million), "investing in people" ($400 million), economic growth ($1.1 billion), and humanitarian assistance ($300 million).

The descriptions are a bit vague, which could lead people to think the money was used for some clandestine purpose.

But even if it that were so, the money in question was spent over more than 20 years. Yanukovych was elected in 2010. So any connection between the protests and the $5 billion is inaccurate.

The State Department created ForeignAssistance.gov to help taxpayers, journalists and others find out where the money is going, but the data is limited in the number of years available and not reported by all agencies.

From that website, we calculated the United States spent $456.4 million in Ukraine since 2009. Again, that's an incomplete picture based on incomplete data reporting.

Some examples? The United States spent about $20 million on Peace Corps programs in Ukraine over the past four years. It spent about $40 million through U.S. AID on health programs in the countries since 2010 -- fighting HIV/AIDs, malaria and providing for maternal and child health. The United States spent an additional $80 million or so working on projects related to weapons of mass destruction , according to ForeignAssistance.gov.

MLS says February 18, 2018

Since 1992, the government has spent about $5.1 billion to support democracy-building programs in Ukraine .

But let's be clear, by "democracy building programs" they mean sending in NGOs to promote the "values" of austerity and debt, and they mean funding candidates for elections approved by the IMF because they have agreed to promote austerity and debt. They aren't promoting democracy, they are promoting the western political belief system. They are also acting to disenfranchise and discredit people who don't support this system. Just as Yeltsin in Russia, so Yarushenko, Yatseniuk & Poroshenko in Ukraine – men prepare to tank the standard of living for ordinary people and asset-strip the country.

Whether that $5 billion was spent over ten years or twenty the result has been the same.

The United States spent about $20 million on Peace Corps programs in Ukraine over the past four years. It spent about $40 million through U.S. AID on health programs in the countries since 2010 -- fighting HIV/AIDs, malaria and providing for maternal and child health. The United States spent an additional $80 million or so working on projects related to weapons of mass destruction, according to ForeignAssistance.gov.

Have you noticed how whatever money is allegedly spent on this worthy projects the countries receiving never seem to improve? They all become debt-slaves, they all end up exporting cheap goods to western countries and letting the IMF tell them how to run things.

Richard Wicks says February 17, 2018
An indictment is simply an accusation. Since all 13 (what a magical number) of these people are in Russia, and there's no extradition agreement with Russia, they will never be able to get a trial to exonerate themselves.

Meanwhile, Clinton was running a fraudulent charity and accepted 145 million dollars in "donations" from Russian Banks..

[Feb 17, 2018] Koroviev,Behemoth Woland LLP

Feb 17, 2018 | disqus.com

February 16, 2018 9:52 PM

Hide

[Feb 17, 2018] Mueller indicts some Russians; clears Trump campaign of collusion (detailed analysis of latest indictment) by Alexander Mercouris

Notable quotes:
"... There is no possibility that any of the Russians named in the indictment will ever be extradited to the US to stand trial there. Special Counsel Mueller cannot therefore obtain convictions against these people, which begs the question of why an indictment was issued at all. ..."
"... The short answer is that the indictment is intended to give credence to the claim of 'Russian meddling' in the US election, which has been made both privately and publicly ever since campaigning in the US began in 2015. ..."
"... Presumably, by giving that claim credence, more reasons can now be offered for keeping Special Counsel Mueller in his job. ..."
"... Nowhere in the indictment is the Russian government or any official of the Russian government or any agency of the Russian government mentioned at all. Nor at any point in the indictment is it suggested that any of the persons indicted were employed by the Russian government or were acting under its instructions or on its behalf. ..."
"... I would add that the indictment shows that US intelligence has successfully hacked the Internet Research Agency, LCC, a fact which by the way suggests that its internal security systems are very weak. The result is that US intelligence is very well informed about its structure, funding, personnel and activities. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | theduran.com

Indictment describes botched and amateur attempt to use social media, but no one in the Trump Campaign was involved

A recurring pattern of the Russiagate investigation is that whenever pressure increases on the FBI and on Special Counsel Mueller an indictment appears.

This happened in October when following the FBI's admission that the Trump Dossier – the keystone in the "evidence" of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia – could not be verified and the Wall Street Journal called for Special Counsel Mueller to resign, indictments against Paul Manafort, Rick Gates and George Papadopoulos appeared.

It happened again in December when growing demands from Congress – from Senator Lindsey Graham in particular – for another Special Counsel to be appointed were followed by the indictment of Michael Flynn.

It has now happened again.

Hot on the heels of the publication of the GOP memorandum, which catalogued a succession of breaches of due process by the Justice Department and the FBI in seeking surveillance warrants against Carter Page, we have a new indictment, this time against 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities.

In every case the indictment is received with rapture by the Russiagate conspiracy theorists.

In every case the indictment appears to be intended to give the impression that progress in the Russiagate investigation is being made, presumably so as to justify keeping Special Counsel Mueller in his job.

In every case it turns out that the indictment is a damp squib, taking the whole Russiagate conspiracy theory no further forward.

The latest indictment against 13 Russian citizens and three Russian entities is a case in point.

The first thing to say about this indictment is that it is entirely declamatory.

There is no possibility that any of the Russians named in the indictment will ever be extradited to the US to stand trial there. Special Counsel Mueller cannot therefore obtain convictions against these people, which begs the question of why an indictment was issued at all.

The short answer is that the indictment is intended to give credence to the claim of 'Russian meddling' in the US election, which has been made both privately and publicly ever since campaigning in the US began in 2015.

Presumably, by giving that claim credence, more reasons can now be offered for keeping Special Counsel Mueller in his job.

The second thing to say about the indictment is that as even Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has admitted , it makes no claim that any US citizen or any member of the Trump campaign in any way colluded with Russia or with any of the persons named in the indictment either before or after the election.

Rosenstein was very clear about this in the press conference he held directly following the publication of the indictment

Now, there is no allegation in this indictment that any American was a knowing participant in this illegal activity. There is no allegation in the indictment that the charged conduct altered the outcome of the 2016 election ..

QUESTION: On page 4 of the indictment, paragraph 6, it specifically talks about the Trump campaign, saying that defendants communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump campaign.

My question is, later in the indictment, campaign officials are referenced, not by their name; by "campaign official 1" or "2" or "3." Were campaign officials cooperative, or were they duped? What is their relationship with this?

ROSENSTEIN: Again, there's no allegation in this indictment that any American had any knowledge. And the nature of the scheme was the defendants took extraordinary steps to make it appear that they were ordinary American political activists, even going so far as to base their activities on a virtual private network here in the United States so, if anybody traced it back to that first jump, they appeared to be Americans.

President Trump is treating this admission as further confirmation that there was no collusion between his campaign and Russia, and he is right.

Russia started their anti-US campaign in 2014, long before I announced that I would run for President. The results of the election were not impacted. The Trump campaign did nothing wrong – no collusion!

-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 16, 2018

The third thing to say about the indictment – and a point which has been almost universally overlooked in all the feverish commentary about it – is that it makes no claim that the Russian government was in any way involved in any of the activities of the persons indicted.

Nowhere in the indictment is the Russian government or any official of the Russian government or any agency of the Russian government mentioned at all. Nor at any point in the indictment is it suggested that any of the persons indicted were employed by the Russian government or were acting under its instructions or on its behalf.

Again Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's press conference is most revealing about this, with him speaking of the persons named in the indictment as if they were private persons

The indictment charges 13 Russian nationals and three Russian companies for committing federal crimes while seeking to interfere in the United States political system, including the 2016 presidential election.

The defendants allegedly conducted what they called information warfare against the United States, with the stated goal of spreading distrust towards the candidates and the political system in general.

According to the allegations in the indictment, 12 of the individual defendants worked, at various times, for a company called Internet Research Agency, LLC, a Russian company based in St. Petersburg.

The other individual defendant, Yevgeny Viktorovich Prigozhin, funded the conspiracy through companies known as Concord Management and Consulting, LLC; Concord Catering; and many affiliates and subsidiaries. The conspiracy was part of a larger operation called Project Lakhta. Project Lakhta included multiple components, some involving domestic audiences within the Russian Federation, and others targeting foreign audiences in multiple countries.

Internet Research Agency allegedly operated through Russian shell companies. It employed hundreds of people in its online operations, ranging from creators of fictitious personas, to technical and administrative support personnel, with an annual budget of millions of dollars.

Internet Research Agency was a structured organization headed by a management group and arranged into departments, including graphics, search engine optimization, information technology and finance departments.

In 2014, the company established a translator project focused on the United States. In July of 2016, more than 80 employees were assigned to the translator project. Two of the defendants allegedly traveled to the United States in 2014 to collect intelligence for their American influence operations.

Note that there is nothing here that ties any of the individuals or entities named by Rosenstein to the Russian government.

The arch conspirator is said to be a Russian businessman called Yevgeny Prigozhin, who is alleged to have masterminded and funded the whole project.

Prigozhin has in fact long been identified in Russia as the owner of the notorious Internet Research Agency, LLC, the supposed Russian "troll farm" operating out of a nondescript building in St. Petersburg (shown in caption photograph).

It has moreover often been suggested in Russia that Internet Research Agency, LLC, is Prigozhin's own personal project.

Certainly no public information linking the Internet Research Agency, LLC, to the Russian government or to any Russian state institution has ever come to light.

Perhaps Rosenstein and Mueller have information that Prigozhin was indeed acting at the behest and on behalf of the Russian government. Perhaps they may have some reason for not disclosing the fact in their indictment.

However, for what it's worth, the indictment lends support to the theory that the Internet Research Agency, LLC, is indeed Prigozhin's own personal project, and that the Russian government is not involved in it.

I would add that the indictment shows that US intelligence has successfully hacked the Internet Research Agency, LCC, a fact which by the way suggests that its internal security systems are very weak. The result is that US intelligence is very well informed about its structure, funding, personnel and activities.

That suggests that if there really was some connection between the Internet Research Agency, LLC, and the Russian government the US authorities would be well informed about it.

The fact that neither the indictment nor Rosenstein in his press conference had anything to say about such a connection rather suggests that no evidence for a connection has been discovered, probably because it does not exist.

I would add – though this will be fiercely denied by some people – that it would be a grave mistake to think that it is impossible for an agency like the Internet Research Agency, LLC, to be set up in Russia on someone's private initiative. On the contrary, those genuinely familiar with the country know that such things go on there all the time.

The fourth thing to say about the indictment is that it centres exclusively on the social media activities about which so much has been said in the last few months as the evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia has failed to appear.

I have said very little about this aspect of the Russiagate affair up to now because I have felt that this aspect of the affair was not in any way important.

This is because the social media activities of which the Internet Research Agency, LLC, and its employees have been accused of have looked both astonishingly incoherent (witness that the indictment says that they were promoting both pro- and anti-Trump rallies on the same day) and quantitatively insignificant, making their impact on the election inconsequential.

The indictment gives no reason to change that view.

The highest number of followers of any of the bogus social media accounts that were set up is alleged by the indictment to have been in the hundreds of thousands, whereas social media activity on any given day runs into the tens of millions.

The social media advertisements mentioned in the indictment appear to have been par for the course during the election, and to have attracted no special interest.

The indictment fails to give numbers for any of the rallies which the persons who have been indicted allegedly tried to organise via social media; that suggests that the number of persons who attended these rallies was insignificant.

The whole project seems to have cost around $1.2 million a month, spent it appears mostly on salaries in Russia, a trivial amount compared to the $2.4 billion spent in the 2016 US Presidential election as a whole, of which $768 million was spent by Hillary Clinton's campaign, and $398 million by Donald Trump's.

That even some of those involved were not taking the project wholly seriously is shown by this frivolous episode solemnly recorded in paragraphs 12 (a) and (b) of the indictment

a.PRIGOZHIN approved and supported the ORGANIZATION's operations, and Defendants and their co-conspirators were aware of PRIGOZHIN's role.

b.For example, on or about May 29, 2016, Defendants and their co-conspirators, through an ORGANIZATION-controlled social media account, arranged for a real U.S. person to stand in front of the White House in the District of Columbia under false pretenses and hold a sign that read "Happy 55th Birthday Dear Boss." Defendants and their co-conspirators informed the real U.S. person that the sign was for someone who "is a leader here and our boss our funder." PRIGOZHIN's Russian passport identifies his date of birth as June 1, 1961.

This silly stunt provides more reason for thinking Prigozhin was the author of the whole project.

I do not wish to trivialise what happened.

Assuming that the claims made in the indictment are true – as I believe they are – then multiple serious crimes were committed.

These included cruel deceptions of innocent people, as well as cases of identity theft. The latter especially is a very serious crime, the impact or seriousness of which should not be minimised.

However I cannot believe that any of this activity – which looks like a botched and amateur attempt by Prigozhin to copy some of the highly professional 'colour revolution' activities carried out around the world by various US and Western NGOs – had any conceivable bearing on the outcome of the US election.

No less a person than Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has moreover said as much

There is no allegation in the indictment that the charged conduct altered the outcome of the 2016 election

QUESTION: Jack, is there concern that this -- the (ph) indictment undermines the outcome of the election?

ROSENSTEIN: Well, haven't I (ph) identified for you the allegations in the indictment? There's no allegation in the indictment of any effect on the outcome of the election.

In summary, the latest indictment to have come from Special Counsel Mueller's team, far from causing problems for President Trump, actually helps him.

In the one part of the Russiagate conspiracy theory in which some evidence of Russian activity exists – the part relating to social media – it turns out that President Trump's campaign was not involved, and those members of his campaign who got drawn into the activities of Prigozhin and his people were completely innocent dupes.

As for the activity itself, the indictment shows that it was carried out on far too small a scale and in far too amateur and disorganised a way for it to have had any impact on the election, and the US authorities do not claim that it did.

It is also my personal view that what we are looking at is a private project cooked up by Yevgeny Prigozhin, who appears to fancy himself a sort of Russian anti-Soros.

If I am right about that then it is clear that Prigozhin has neither the high level backing nor the skill to play that role successfully, and his clumsy attempts to do so have instead simply caused Russia embarrassment and trouble.

I accept that the latter view will be disputed by many – though the evidence in my opinion supports it – but even if I am wrong about that, it does not detract from the fundamental fact that no evidence of collusion between anyone in the Trump campaign and Russia appears in the latest indictment, and that the activities catalogued in the indictment can have had no effect on the outcome of the election, and the US authorities do not say that they did.

[Feb 17, 2018] Russia has paid for a few Facebook trolls. Boo hoo. Better that than the typical US method of kidnapping and torturing opposition leaders we don t like.

Feb 17, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Expat Sat, 02/17/2018 - 18:28 Permalink

How is this "news"? The US has been meddling in foreign elections for hundreds of years. When we can't change the results, we change the leader. We have assassinated foreign leaders. We have organized revolutions. We have carried out false flag "terrorist" attacks to destabilize countries.

Russia has paid for a few Facebook trolls. Boo hoo. Better that than the typical US method of kidnapping and torturing opposition leaders we don't like. Fuck America and it's brutish hypocrisy.

Son of Captain Nemo Sat, 02/17/2018 - 17:59 Permalink

Woolsey is one of many profiles in the "machine" that turns out the worst socio/psychopaths called Langley!... Much like the Department of Defense they train them to believe they are the most highly intelligent and capable in espionage even when they "lose" and lose "badly"!

They look at themselves as superior beings in every way that deserve and expect no restraint. And are repeatedly rewarded with pay and responsibility even when failure on missions includes the worst "blowback"!

If there ever was a government agency alongside the DOD that deserves the honorary title of total betrayal to their motto " And You Shall Know The Truth And It Shall Set You Free "... that has economically and politically SINGLE HANDEDLY done the opposite of EVERYTHING DEMOCRACY STANDS FOR in it's TOTAL DESTRUCTION -- this agency is the personification without equal and "without question"!

[Feb 17, 2018] In the Mueller indictment it also notes (page 23) that "Trump is Not my President" NYC, Novermber 12 2016, was a Russian idea. So by Mueller logic the Resistance is a Russian idea. How many members of congress should get expelled over being Putin's puppets?

Notable quotes:
"... Is this all he has to show for millions of dollars and how many damned months of investigation? How about all the NGOs that get foreign donations? When the hell are they going to get investigated for "defrauding" the United States? Better not ask, that would violate the narrative . God help us. ..."
"... And then there was a pink-pussy D.C. riot and the DisruptJ20 protest group riot against Trump. Have Mueller and Rosenstein had a sudden onset of dementia and forgotten the mass protests? ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Fred ,

Publius,

In the Mueller indictment it also notes (page 23) that "Trump is Not my President" NYC, November 12 2016, was a Russian idea. So by Mueller logic the Resistance is a Russian idea. How many members of congress should get expelled over being Putin's puppets?

Is this all he has to show for millions of dollars and how many damned months of investigation? How about all the NGOs that get foreign donations? When the hell are they going to get investigated for "defrauding" the United States? Better not ask, that would violate the narrative . God help us.

Anna , 16 February 2018 at 03:14 PM
Russian meddling -- Finally some "evidence" for the gullible: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-02-16/special-counsel-robert-mueller-indicts-13-russians-hacking-during-us-election

"Defendant ORGANIZATION had a strategic goal to sow discord in the U.S. political system, including the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Defendants posted derogatory information about a number of candidates, and by early to mid-2016, Defendants' operations included supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump ("Trump Campaign") and disparaging Hillary Clinton."

-- Really? Somehow the righteous Mueller and Rosenstein have missed very important Intel:

Comment section: "Sixteen thousand Facebook users said that they planned to attend a Trump protest on Nov. 12, 2016, organized by the Facebook page for BlackMattersUS, a Russian-linked group [?!!] that sought to capitalize on racial tensions between black and white Americans. The event was shared with 61,000 users. As many as 5,000 to 10,000 protesters actually convened at Manhattan's Union Square. They then marched to Trump Tower, according to media reports at the time. ... The group's protest was the fourth [4th!] consecutive anti-Trump rally in New York following election night, and one of many across the country." http://thehill.com/policy/technology/358025-thousands-attended-protest-organized-by-russians-on-facebook

-- And then there was a pink-pussy D.C. riot and the DisruptJ20 protest group riot against Trump. Have Mueller and Rosenstein had a sudden onset of dementia and forgotten the mass protests? Who was financing and organizing the logistics for the anti-Trump protests? Was there any investigation of the organizers of the protests against the elected POTUS? http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/what-i-saw-at-the-anti-trump-riot-in-dc/article/2612548
http://www.businessinsider.com/pussy-hats-womens-march-washington-trump-inauguration-2017-2

BillWade , 16 February 2018 at 03:14 PM
It sounds like the indictment makes 13 Russian trolls into felons. How many trolls do we have? Where do they work, will other governments decide they are felons as well? This isn't a "nothingburger", it's a "veginothingburger". Hasn't President Trump now been exonerated as well, "unwittings" versus "colluders"?
Keith Harbaugh , 16 February 2018 at 03:52 PM
Okay, let me try again. I tried to post what appears below the line to PT's post http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/02/pieces-of-the-coup-puzzle-fall-into-place-by-publius-tacitus.html but it was not accepted.

Given PT's reference to RFE/VoA in the post above, let me repeat the question:

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

I have read numerous accounts of how the U.S. has attempted to influence political developments in:

Back during the Cold War we were told that the USSR would try to block or jam VoA/RFE broadcasts from reaching their citizens.

So, my very sincere question is: Just how did U.S. efforts to influence the population of the USSR via the broadcasts of VoA/RFE differ from the alleged efforts of Russia to support what the media calls far-right parties and policies in the U.S. and Europe?

A Pols , 16 February 2018 at 03:52 PM
So these 13 Russians are accused of trolling and planting rumors?

Since the same thing is being done by Americans and, yes, Israelis, it seems ludicrous to suggest this is really "meddling" in the election. More like "feeding red meat to grey dogs" in the sense of stoking the fires of internecine culture wars already ongoing in this country.

If we actually end up arresting any of these individuals there will be tit for tat since there are still American financed NGOs operating in Russia whose personnel can be easily arrested on similar charges of promoting chaos and discord. Maybe the Germans can rent us that famous Berlin Bridge where "spies" were exchanged in various cold war movies.

Richardstevenhack , 16 February 2018 at 04:24 PM
See my comment in TTG's thread about who these "Internet Research Agency" people actually are. Scott Humor over at The Saker dug deep into these people and determined that they are actually anti-Russian Russians who were allegedly proven in court to be CIA spies!

I link to Scott's piece in the TTG thread. Hell, might as well link it here, too:

A Brief History of the "Kremlin Trolls" https://thesaker.is/a-brief-history-of-the-kremlin-trolls/

This is a clever move on Mueller's part -- indict a bunch of Russians who (some) already have been arrested by the Russians and therefore are in no position to defend themselves against a US indictment.

I suppose Brennan doesn't care that a bunch of Russians recruited as CIA assets get dumped on their own resources. Good luck recruiting any more Russians to help you!

It's a measure of Mueller's desperation, nothing more.

Keith Harbaugh , 16 February 2018 at 04:38 PM
PT, if I understand you correctly you think the 2017 IC "assessment" that Russia meddled does not really reflect an IC consensus. If that is your view, how do you reconcile it with these statements:

https://youtu.be/6AHaOwU0_ZY?t=45m50s

(By the way, I am not hostile to you or your view, but simply interested in the truth.)

Valissa , 16 February 2018 at 04:38 PM
"Russians Did Not Alter The Outcome Of The Elections": Highlights From Rosenstein's Press Conference https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-02-16/russians-did-not-alter-outcome-elections-highlights-rosensteins-press-conference

To summarize: in 2014, 13 Russians launched a campaign to interfere with the US political system by "disparaging" candidates. This continued until ultimately Trump was elected, meanwhile, "there is no allegation in this indictment that any American was a knowing participant in this illegal activity. There is no allegation in the indictment that the [Russians'] conduct altered the outcome of the 2016 election."

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

How nice and simple and tidy. '13 Russians'... has nice ring to it... will make a great propaganda movie.

Seriously though, will this face saving result in any way encourage the Dems to pick a new strategy for "success" the Republicans? Or will they simply triple down on dumb?

BillWade , 16 February 2018 at 05:46 PM
Aren't the economic sanctions imposed upon Russia due to Russian meddling in our elections? Might it not be prudent for Putin to round the 13 yokels up and put them on the next flight to NY (with lots of publicity)?
iowa steve , 16 February 2018 at 05:47 PM
During the campaign any voter using social media could come across literally hundreds of posts effectively proclaiming "Hillary is trash" and "Trump is trash".

Or for that matter the voters could see much the same by reading the campaign literature in their mailboxes, or listening to speeches on television.

Yet, somehow, a few Russian trolls posting online claims that were indistinguishable from most of the "normal" election rhetoric is a threat to our democracy.

Imho, a far bigger threat to our elections is the massive amounts of money involved, and the funding of candidates by oligarchs. But the msm seems confortable with that.

And it goes without saying that one of the most immediate threats to our democracy generated by Russiagate are the ongoing attempts to silence alternative dissent to the status-quo and label it as coming from Russianbots.

bluetonga , 16 February 2018 at 07:17 PM
"anyone who was disparaging Clinton, may have "unwittingly" been a collaborator of the 13 Russian "specialists" who cost Hillary the election"

Sounds even more desperate than simply dumb to me. Comey and his kins seem so pressed by (the lack of) facts and the overall incoherence of their ludicrous tale that they finally see no other choice than resorting to the ultimate weapon in store : direct scolding and shaming of ordinary citizen bold enough to object HRC's wrongdoings, past, present and future.

I this vein, I also read in earlier comment threads speculations regarding a new, very cunning objective of the putative Russian attackers : getting willfully spotted in order to spread chaos within the US politics and doubt within the heart of citizen. Frankly this sounds a wee bit far-fetched, like machiavelous 2.3 with Putin and the Kremlin gang upgrading to 4-D chess politics. Wouldn't it have been bold enough for them to bet on the universally predicted loser Trump? What sense does it make to interfere ostenteously when precisely their vowed nemesis is bound to win? How would that have tarnished her victory if she had won despite their meddling? Doesn't hold any water to me, but desperation stimulates imagination, and truly, confusion. Contenders of this view seem well engaged in a perillous intellectual twister game.

Besides, such an account shows very little appreciation for the intelligence and critical thinking of American voters. I bet that if many came to distrust their institutions, it is out of their own experience and reflexion rather than out of foreign engineering.

Delusion, desperation, confusion, stupidity, whatever. But for sure the seams are creaking.

Alves , 16 February 2018 at 07:20 PM
The funny thing is that it looks like the Russian government jailed several people from IRA last year. It would be prudent to look into it and try to figure out what is going on for real.
plantman , 16 February 2018 at 08:04 PM
One comment on the Timeline...

You say: "Harry Reid was briefed by John Brennan on 25 August 2016, according to a 6 April 2017 NY Times piece by Eric Lichtblau.

Well, now that's pretty convenient timing, don't you think? After all, Trump didn't become the GOP candidate for prez until the GOP convention on July 16, 2016. That gave the scheming Brennan a month to make up this dumb story and start passing it around Capitol Hill.

Yeah, Right , 16 February 2018 at 08:32 PM
"anyone who was disparaging Clinton, may have "unwittingly" been a collaborator of the 13 Russian "specialists" who cost Hillary the election."

So the US-side-of-things isn't even a "conspiracy" any more, it has become a "collaboration" of dupes?

What next?

Is Mueller going to accuse Trump-followers of the heinous sin of "not being with the program"? Or of "bucking the system"?

Goddammit! Hillary was meant to be the winner. All the scales were tipped in her favour. How dare there be any other result! Heads. Must. Roll!!!

GeneO , 16 February 2018 at 09:20 PM
Publius Tacitus -

Regarding your claim that Mueller concluded "unwittingly collaborated":

According to the text of the indictment that our host, Pat Lang, posted Mueller made no such conclusion. I note you did not put it within quotation marks.

Is there a separate indictment floating around out there with those conclusions?

Fred -> Valissa... , 16 February 2018 at 09:20 PM
Valissa,

You mean Robby Mook is going to blow through $3 Billion next time out and still lose?

LondonBob said in reply to Richardstevenhack ... , 17 February 2018 at 06:19 AM
Well it is an organisation that has received a lot of publicity in the West for awhile so it is an odd choice, I would have thought they would want a less public organisation for any IO.

Comey was telling the truth: he was still in the delusional belief he could weasel out of it and continue on as FBI chief.

Peter AU , 17 February 2018 at 06:36 AM
PT, in the latest, US indictment against a number of Russians, as its only example, cites a US placard holder on the birthday of JFK as evidence of "Russian interference". Jeez, JFK was a Russian? What a friggin shambles the empire has become.
Bill H -> eakens... , 17 February 2018 at 10:30 AM
Yes indeed. As I said before in another thread. If the election is "disrupted" by voters altering their votes due to Russians posting on Facebook, then the problem is not that Russians are posting on Facebook, the problem is that voters are altering their votes based on posts they read on Facebook. There is little point in correcting the former problem without correcting the latter and vastly more serious problem.

The indictment accuses Russia of attempting to "diminish the public's faith in democracy," or some such thing. I really don't think our own voting public needs Russia's help in doing that.

J -> Bill H ... , 17 February 2018 at 11:51 AM
Nope, our crooked Politicians AND Intelligence/Law Enforcement entities are doing a good job of diminishing the public's faith. I don't know how many of my fellow Americans I have talked to have said to round them all the crooked politicians/intelligence/law enforcement and eradicate them from the earth permanently. That is why we see more and more the crooked politicians/intelligence/law enforcement understanding well their simmering public anger, and because of their fear of the angry public that they have created the surveillance grids (has nothing to do with misnomer terrorism), their legislation/laws that further restrict the public's ability to fight back against their crooked ways.

Diminished public faith, that's putting it mildly.

Sid_finster , 17 February 2018 at 02:32 PM
Mueller had a year and an unlimited budget, and all he has to show is an episode of "MTV's Catfish".

But that's not the point. The point is to distract from Deep State malfeasance, and use russiagate on domestic dissent.

Do you know whether that meme you are sharing didn't originate from.. RUSSIA!

different clue , 17 February 2018 at 03:26 PM
The Democrats remember how well the Republicans ( with help from Truman and others)
made Loyalty Oathism and HUACism and McCarthyism work for them. So the Democrats have decided to try making their own 2.0 version of Loyalty Oathism and HUACism and McCarthyism work for them. They will spend the next several-to-many years running their Reverse McCarthyism 2.0 operation.

They will accuse any Bitter Berners rejectful of yet-one-more-Clintonite of witless dupe-ness. If that doesn't win us over, they will accuse us of Russian subversive Fellow-Traveller-ism. If that doesn't win us over, they will accuse us of being Russian agents.

Of course they will try doing this to Republicans as well. If the Republicans complain, the Democrats will say such complaints are proof of Republican secret-Russian-agent subversionism; while quietly thinking to themselves " payback time for
McCarthy and HUAC").

DianaLC , 17 February 2018 at 03:26 PM
Thanks,PT, as usual.

I have no connection to intelligence agencies. I'm a mere citizen. I've been spending the last few days making cold calls to registered party members here in CO, trying to get them interested in the caucuses that are coming up. Remember how the caucuses became an issue when Trump was running?

Almost no one responded that they were going to attend. Several said they were so sick of politics they would definitely not attend. I'm beginning to believe that I and our precinct captain and her husband will be the only ones there.

What a sad state our country is in. Your last line is true, to a great extent, but I have to add to it. Yes, we need God to help American. And, yes, many Americans seem to have lost their mind. But what makes me sadder is that most of us who have not lost our minds are losing our belief that we could ever make a difference, to make things better.

[Feb 17, 2018] A federal judge has ordered Mueller to hand over all related documents to Flynn. If there is exculpatory evidence then Flynn could withdraw his plea and Mueller censured

Notable quotes:
"... I did read the indictment of the Russians and to my non-lawyer eyes, it read more like a political document rather than a criminal indictment. ..."
"... The charges seem very silly to me. And if ever there is a trial with these defendants challenging the prosecution I can see how they can win. But of course no one would pay any attention to the trial as the indictment is the desired endpoint that the media and the Democrats want. In comparison to the foreign money and influence operations of the zionists, the Saudis and of course many British politicians and their media during the last election, the operation by these Russians charged was more nonsensical. It would be absurd on the face of it that a bunch of Russian trolls could influence the election in any meaningful way. ..."
"... With respect to the potential conspiracy at the FBI, DOJ, and the IC, can Mueller really investigate his own colleagues and personal friends? I think he is a card carrying member of the Borg elite ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Jack

Sir

I agree with you that the questions you posed should be answered.

An interesting point in all this high stakes drama is that a federal judge has ordered Mueller to hand over all related documents to Flynn. If there is exculpatory evidence then Flynn could withdraw his plea and Mueller censured.

I did read the indictment of the Russians and to my non-lawyer eyes, it read more like a political document rather than a criminal indictment. Mueller provided both sides reinforcement of their talking points. Hillary and the Democrats can confirm she lost the election due to a bunch of Russian trolls who spent a few million dollars and upended her billion dollar campaign war chest. Trump gets to confirm that there was no collusion.

The charges seem very silly to me. And if ever there is a trial with these defendants challenging the prosecution I can see how they can win. But of course no one would pay any attention to the trial as the indictment is the desired endpoint that the media and the Democrats want. In comparison to the foreign money and influence operations of the zionists, the Saudis and of course many British politicians and their media during the last election, the operation by these Russians charged was more nonsensical. It would be absurd on the face of it that a bunch of Russian trolls could influence the election in any meaningful way.

With respect to the potential conspiracy at the FBI, DOJ, and the IC, can Mueller really investigate his own colleagues and personal friends? I think he is a card carrying member of the Borg elite.

[Feb 17, 2018] DNC "hack" hoax should be investigated as that involves screwing with the investigation of a Federal crime and has counterintelligence implications and could lead to lots of indictments

Notable quotes:
"... We need a separate, really non-partisan investigation for the rest of the list. I think it would be possible to find competent investigators outside of the more politicized agencies who could be vetted for any political bias before being assigned. Investigation is investigation - you just need a place to start and a list of people to talk to. Facts then shake out. ..."
"... If Mueller does not look sufficiently into the "rolling Soft-Coup" aspects of all this, let us hope that the Congress and the Administration together can force into existence a Special Counsel with all of the powers and staff and funding that Mueller currently has/ will have. . . . to look into the "rolling Soft-Coup" aspects of all this. ..."
"... If such a counsel would look into the "letting Clinton off the e-mail hook" aspects of all this and esPECially into the "who shot Seth Rich" and "e-mails . . . hacked or leaked?" aspects of all this, so much the better. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Richardstevenhack , 17 February 2018 at 03:07 PM

I agree that the list should be investigated - especially the DNC "hack" hoax as that involves screwing with the investigation of a Federal crime and has counterintelligence implications and could lead to lots of indictments.

However, as someone else pointed out in the last thread, Mueller's only remit was to find evidence of Russian government "meddling" in the election and/or "collusion" with Trump and the Trump campaign - which he has not found yet and is highly unlikely to find. The 13 indictments are a joke in that regard.

We need a separate, really non-partisan investigation for the rest of the list. I think it would be possible to find competent investigators outside of the more politicized agencies who could be vetted for any political bias before being assigned. Investigation is investigation - you just need a place to start and a list of people to talk to. Facts then shake out.

different clue , 17 February 2018 at 03:07 PM
If Mueller does not look sufficiently into the "rolling Soft-Coup" aspects of all this, let us hope that the Congress and the Administration together can force into existence a Special Counsel with all of the powers and staff and funding that Mueller currently has/ will have. . . . to look into the "rolling Soft-Coup" aspects of all this.

If such a counsel would look into the "letting Clinton off the e-mail hook" aspects of all this and esPECially into the "who shot Seth Rich" and "e-mails . . . hacked or leaked?" aspects of all this, so much the better.

[Feb 17, 2018] Rosenstein unaccountably failed to mention yesterday Mueller's having landed a really, really big fish on February 2, the unwitting colluder and witless Ricard Pinedo (age 28), a small town scammer who operates a fake ID business out of Santa Paula

Looks like now Rosenstein is a marked man.
Feb 17, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Newmarket

All very good questions and one more either related to, or subsumed within #s 3 and 6 is whether Steele/MI6 are "targetable" for having meddled in the 2016 election.

Rosenstein unaccountably failed to mention yesterday Mueller's having landed a really, really big fish on February 2, the unwitting colluder and witless Ricard Pinedo (age 28), a small town scammer who operates a fake ID business out of Santa Paula, CA, a 80% Hispanic farm worker town in boondocks California. Pinedo plead guilty to one count of identify fraud and had, apparently, profited to the extent of some $10,000 or so from the sale of identify and banking information on-line with only a minimal amount sourced from any of the 13 defendants in the indictments. http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-richard-pinedo-mueller-investigation-20180216-story.html. The MSM, apparently, like Mr. Mueller has decided not to make a big deal out of the Pinedo indictment for reasons which remain the subject of speculation.

[Feb 17, 2018] Robert Mueller charges 13 Russians with interfering in US election to help Trump

Building a cage on a flatbed track with Hillary in prison uniform played by an actor inside is directly from Gene Sharp playbook and could be Otpor! activity ;-) No that bad idea for a anti-Hillary rally actually :-)
Was internet Research Agency a real company or fake ? One author think that it was a fake: A Brief History of the "Kremlin Trolls" by Scott Humor
Notable quotes:
"... Mueller alleged that Russian operatives "communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump campaign", but the indictment did not address the question of whether anyone else in Trump's team had knowingly colluded. ..."
"... Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, said at a press conference in Washington: "There is no allegation in this indictment that any American had any knowledge." Rosenstein added that the charges did not mean the Russian activity had an effect on the outcome of the election. ..."
"... In a statement on Friday, Trump suggested that what he called "outlandish partisan attacks, wild and false allegations, and far-fetched theories" relating to possible collusion were serving to further the Russian agenda. ..."
"... "This indictment serves as a reminder that people are not always who they appear to be on the internet," said Rosenstein. He alleged that the Russians had "worked to promote discord in the United States and undermine public confidence in democracy," adding: "We must not allow them to succeed." ..."
"... Prigozhin, who has also been linked to the Wagner Group, a shadowy Kremlin-linked private military contractor believed to be operating in Syria, -> was included on a US sanctions list in July . ..."
"... Speaking to the RIA Novosti state news agency on Friday, Prigozhin said: "The Americans are really impressionable people, they see what they want to see. I have great respect for them. If they want to see the devil -- let them see him." ..."
"... Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called the allegations "absurd". "Thirteen people carried out interference in the US elections? Thirteen people against special services with a budgets of billions?" she wrote in a Facebook post. ..."
Oct 15, 2017 | -> www.theguardian.com
-> Robert Mueller , the special counsel, announced on Friday.

Mueller's office said 13 Russians and three Russian entities, including the notorious state-backed "troll farm" the Internet Research Agency, had been indicted by a federal grand jury in Washington DC .

A 37-page indictment alleged that the Russians' operations "included supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J Trump ... and disparaging Hillary Clinton," his Democratic opponent.

Mueller alleged that Russian operatives "communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump campaign", but the indictment did not address the question of whether anyone else in Trump's team had knowingly colluded.

Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, said at a press conference in Washington: "There is no allegation in this indictment that any American had any knowledge." Rosenstein added that the charges did not mean the Russian activity had an effect on the outcome of the election.

Trump and the White House seized on Rosenstein's remarks to falsely claim that the indictment proved there had been no collusion and that the election result had definitely not been impacted.

In a statement on Friday, Trump suggested that what he called "outlandish partisan attacks, wild and false allegations, and far-fetched theories" relating to possible collusion were serving to further the Russian agenda.

The Russians allegedly posed as Americans to operate bogus social media accounts, buy advertisements and stage political rallies. They stole the identities of real people in the US to post online and built computer systems in the US to hide the Russian origin of their activity, according prosecutors.

"This indictment serves as a reminder that people are not always who they appear to be on the internet," said Rosenstein. He alleged that the Russians had "worked to promote discord in the United States and undermine public confidence in democracy," adding: "We must not allow them to succeed."

The charges state that from as far back as 2014, the defendants conspired together to defraud the US by "impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of government" through interference with the American political and electoral processes.

One defendant, Yevgeniy Prigozhin, is accused of using companies he controlled – including Concord Management and Consulting, and Concord Catering – to finance the operations against the US. The operation at one stage had a monthly budget of $1.25m, according to Mueller, which paid for operatives' salaries and bonuses.

Events were organised by Russians posing as Trump supporters and as groups opposed to Trump such as Black Lives Matter , according to prosecutors. One advertisement shortly before the election promoted the Green party candidate Jill Stein, who is blamed by some Clinton backers for splitting the anti-Trump vote.

In August 2016, Russian operatives communicated with Trump campaign staff in Florida through their "@donaldtrump.com" email addresses to coordinate a series of pro-Trump rallies in the state, according to Mueller, and then bought advertisements on social media to promote the events.

At one rally in West Palm Beach, a Russian operative is even alleged to have paid Americans to build a cage on a flatbed truck and to have an actor posing as Clinton in a prison uniform stand inside.

-> Facebook Twitter Pinterest 55 Savushkina Street, St Petersburg, said to be the headquarters of Russia's 'troll army'. Photograph: Shaun Walker for the Guardian

One defendant, Irina Kaverzina, is accused of admitting her involvement in the operation and a subsequent coverup in an email to a relative in September last year, after Mueller's inquiry had begun. "We had a slight crisis here at work: the FBI busted our activity," Kaverzina allegedly wrote, "so I got preoccupied with covering tracks together with the colleagues."

The Russians are also accused of working to suppress turnout among ethnic minority voters. They allegedly created an Instagram account posing as "Woke Blacks" and railed against the notion that African Americans should choose Clinton as "the lesser of two devils" against Trump.

In early November 2016, according to the indictment, the Russian operatives used bogus "United Muslims of America" social media accounts to claim that "American Muslims [are] boycotting elections today."

Following Trump's victory, the Russian operation promoted allegations of voter fraud by the Democratic party, according to Mueller's team. Around that time, Trump repeatedly claimed without evidence that he would have won the popular vote if not for large-scale voter fraud.

The individuals charged are Mikhail Ivanovich Bystrov, Mikhail Leonidovich Burchik, Aleksandra Yuryevna Krylova, Anna Vladislavovna Bogacheva, Sergey Pavlovich Polozov, Maria Anatolyevna Bovda, Robert Sergeyevich Bovda, Dzheykhun Nasimi Ogly Aslanov, Vadim Vladimirovich Podkopaev, Gleb Igorevitch Vasilchenko, Irina Viktorovna Kaverzina, Yevgeny Viktorovich Prigozhin and Vladimir Venkov.

All were charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States. Three defendants were charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, and five defendants were charged with aggravated identity theft.

Separately, Mueller's office announced that Richard Pinedo, of Santa Paula, California, had pleaded guilty to identity fraud . Pinedo, 28, admitted to running a website that offered stolen identities to help customers get around the security measures of major online payment sites. It was not made clear whether his service had been used by the Russian operatives.

Rosenstein said no contact had been made with Russian authorities regarding the charges so far, but that US officials intended to seek extradition of the defendants.

US intelligence agencies previously concluded that Russians mounted an attack on the US election system aimed at electing -> Donald Trump to the presidency.

Mueller is conducting a criminal inquiry into interference by Russians and possible collusion by Trump's campaign. Two Trump campaign advisers have pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. Two others have been charged with federal crimes.

US investigators have long signalled their belief that Prigozhin, a 56-year-old billionaire businessman, is behind Russia's internet troll factories.

Nicknamed the "Kremlin's chef", Prigozhin once ran Putin's favourite restaurant in St Petersburg, after which he was awarded multi-billion pound state catering contracts. He provided catering for Dmitry Medvedev's presidential inauguration in 2008, and also has lucrative contracts to feed Russia's army and Moscow's schoolchildren.

Prigozhin, who has also been linked to the Wagner Group, a shadowy Kremlin-linked private military contractor believed to be operating in Syria, -> was included on a US sanctions list in July .

Speaking to the RIA Novosti state news agency on Friday, Prigozhin said: "The Americans are really impressionable people, they see what they want to see. I have great respect for them. If they want to see the devil -- let them see him."

Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called the allegations "absurd". "Thirteen people carried out interference in the US elections? Thirteen people against special services with a budgets of billions?" she wrote in a Facebook post.

Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Russian media he had not yet had a chance to study the indictments.

[Feb 17, 2018] Isn t sowing discord like the main mission of the CIA, both here and in other countries? . Is the Internet Research Agency a CIA hacking group?

Notable quotes:
"... The Russian organization named in the indictment - the Internet Research Agency - and the defendants began working in 2014 - so one year before the Trump candidacy was even announced - to interfere in U.S. elections, according to the indictment in Washington. ..."
"... 2014.......um, yeah, what a crock of bullshit. ..."
"... Seriously though, what is illegal about what they did? Sowing discord? Hell CNN and all of Soros' org would be guilty of the same thing wouldn't they? Isn't 'sowing discord' like the main mission of the CIA, both here and in other countries? ..."
"... B-but the Russians conspired ... to commit free speech. They obstructed ... by speaking . (The story doesn't mention if what was said was true.) Mr. Mueller, please stop wasting our time and money. ..."
Feb 16, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

dexter_morgan Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:03 Permalink

The Russian organization named in the indictment - the Internet Research Agency - and the defendants began working in 2014 - so one year before the Trump candidacy was even announced - to interfere in U.S. elections, according to the indictment in Washington.

They used false personas and social media while also staging political rallies and communicating with "unwitting individuals" associated with the Trump campaign, it said.

2014.......um, yeah, what a crock of bullshit.

Seriously though, what is illegal about what they did? Sowing discord? Hell CNN and all of Soros' org would be guilty of the same thing wouldn't they? Isn't 'sowing discord' like the main mission of the CIA, both here and in other countries?

Not a lawyer, but seems this cannot hold up in court.

Noktirnal Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:14 Permalink

Sounds to me like they're being indicted for exercising free speech. Does that only apply to citizens?

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

It restricts Congress .

I believe political speech is the most protected form of speech. I think there's a Supreme Court ruling on that topic.

B-but the Russians conspired ... to commit free speech. They obstructed ... by speaking . (The story doesn't mention if what was said was true.) Mr. Mueller, please stop wasting our time and money.

SirBarksAlot Fri, 02/16/2018 - 17:09 Permalink

I'm re-posting this from an earlier post someone else made. The Internet Research Agency is a CIA hacking group!

The best way to get information is to make it up.

Everything what we know now about the so-called "Kremlin trolls from the Internet Research Agency paid by Putin's favorite chef," came from one source, a group of CIA spies that used the mascot of Shaltay-Boltay, or Humpty-Dumpty, for their collective online persona.

http://thesaker.is/a-brief-history-of-the-kremlin-trolls/

[Feb 17, 2018] Documents Show How Russia's Troll Army Hit America

This is the same online site which published Steele dossier
As for daily workloads those nasty Russians looks like real neoliberal slave owners not that dissimilar to Amazon packers, or WalMart cashiers ;-) "The documents show instructions provided to the commenters that detail the workload expected of them. On an average working day, the Russians are to post on news articles 50 times. Each blogger is to maintain six Facebook accounts publishing at least three posts a day and discussing the news in groups at least twice a day. By the end of the first month, they are expected to have won 500 subscribers and get at least five posts on each item a day. On Twitter, the bloggers are expected to manage 10 accounts with up to 2,000 followers and tweet 50 times a day. "
In A Brief History of the "Kremlin Trolls" The Vineyard of the Saker this "leak" is attributed to the Shaltay-Boltay group which was specializing of forgeries of compromising for Russia documents, claiming that those files were "hacked".
Notable quotes:
"... Osadchy told BuzzFeed he had never worked for the Internet Research Agency and that the extensive documents -- including apparent budgeting for his $35,000 salary -- were an "unsuccessful provocation." He declined to comment on the content of the leaks. The Kremlin declined to comment. The Internet Research Agency has not commented on the leak. ..."
"... "What, you think crazy Russians all learned English en masse and went off to comment on articles?" said Leonid Bershidsky, a media executive and Bloomberg View columnist. ..."
Feb 17, 2018 | www.buzzfeed.com

Plans attached to emails leaked by a mysterious Russian hacker collective show IT managers reporting on a new ideological front against the West in the comments sections of Fox News, Huffington Post , The Blaze, Politico , and WorldNetDaily .

The bizarre hive of social media activity appears to be part of a two-pronged Kremlin campaign to claim control over the internet, launching a million-dollar army of trolls to mold American public opinion as it cracks down on internet freedom at home.

"Foreign media are currently actively forming a negative image of the Russian Federation in the eyes of the global community," one of the project's team members, Svetlana Boiko, wrote in a strategy document. "Additionally, the discussions formed by comments to those articles are also negative in tone.

"Like any brand formed by popular opinion, Russia has its supporters ('brand advocates') and its opponents. The main problem is that in the foreign internet community, the ratio of supporters and opponents of Russia is about 20/80 respectively."

The documents show instructions provided to the commenters that detail the workload expected of them. On an average working day, the Russians are to post on news articles 50 times. Each blogger is to maintain six Facebook accounts publishing at least three posts a day and discussing the news in groups at least twice a day. By the end of the first month, they are expected to have won 500 subscribers and get at least five posts on each item a day. On Twitter, the bloggers are expected to manage 10 accounts with up to 2,000 followers and tweet 50 times a day.

They are to post messages along themes called "American Dream" and "I Love Russia." The archetypes for the accounts are called Handkerchief, Gay Turtle, The Ghost of Marius the Giraffe, Left Breast, Black Breast, and Ass, for reasons that are not immediately clear.

According to the documents, which are attached to several hundred emails sent to the project's leader, Igor Osadchy, the effort was launched in April and is led by a firm called the Internet Research Agency. It's based in a Saint Petersburg suburb, and the documents say it employs hundreds of people across Russia who promote Putin in comments on Russian blogs.

Osadchy told BuzzFeed he had never worked for the Internet Research Agency and that the extensive documents -- including apparent budgeting for his $35,000 salary -- were an "unsuccessful provocation." He declined to comment on the content of the leaks. The Kremlin declined to comment. The Internet Research Agency has not commented on the leak.

Definitively proving the authenticity of the documents and their authors' ties to the Kremlin is, by the nature of the subject, not easy. The project's cost, scale, and awkward implementation have led many observers in Russia to doubt, however, that it could have come about in any other way.

"What, you think crazy Russians all learned English en masse and went off to comment on articles?" said Leonid Bershidsky, a media executive and Bloomberg View columnist. "If it looks like Kremlin shit, smells like Kremlin shit, and tastes like Kremlin shit too -- then it's Kremlin shit."

Despite efforts to hire English teachers for the trolls, most of the comments are written in barely coherent English. "I think the whole world is realizing what will be with Ukraine, and only U.S. keep on fuck around because of their great plans are doomed to failure," reads one post from an unnamed forum, used as an example in the leaked documents.

[Feb 16, 2018] Moscow charges ex-FSB Kaspersky staff with treason 'in interests of US' lawyer

Notable quotes:
"... "treason in favor of the US," ..."
"... "There is no mention of the CIA at all. [The entity] in question is the US, not the CIA," ..."
"... 'Shaltai Boltai' ..."
"... "no personnel changes" ..."
Feb 01, 2017 | www.rt.com

Two senior FSB officers and a high-level manager of Russia's leading cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab are facing official charges of treason in the interests of the US, a lawyer representing one of the defendants has confirmed to Interfax. Ruslan Stoyanov, head of Kaspersky Lab's computer incidents investigations unit, Sergey Mikhailov, a senior Russian FSB officer, and his deputy Dmitry Dokuchayev are accused of "treason in favor of the US," lawyer Ivan Pavlov said on Wednesday, as cited by Interfax. Read more © Michael Weber / Global Look Press 70mn cyberattacks, mostly foreign, targeted Russia's critical infrastructure in 2016 – FSB

Pavlov chose not to disclose which of the defendants he represents, adding, however, that his client denies all charges.

The charges against the defendants do not imply they were cooperating with the CIA, Pavlov added. "There is no mention of the CIA at all. [The entity] in question is the US, not the CIA," he stressed, according to TASS.

The lawyer maintained the court files included no mention of Vladimir Anikeev, an alleged leader of 'Shaltai Boltai', a hacking group that previously leaked emails from top Russian officials, including Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

The hacking group's name was in the news earlier in January, when Russian media reports linked Mikhailov and Dokuchayev to 'Shaltai Boltai' . In an unsourced article last Wednesday, Rosbalt newspaper claimed Mikhailov's unit was ordered in 2016 to work with the group.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told RIA Novosti on Wednesday the treason charges do not relate to the US suspicions of Russia being behind the alleged cyberattacks on the 2016 presidential elections. He added that President Vladimir Putin is receiving regular updates on the current investigation.

Russian media reports said Mikhailov was arrested during a conference of top FSB leadership. He was reportedly escorted out of the room with a bag placed over his head. His deputy, Dokuchayev, is said to be a well-known hacker who allegedly began cooperating with the FSB several years ago. Kaspersky Lab manager Stoyanov was also placed under arrest several weeks ago.

Stoyanov is still employed by Kaspersky Lab, the company told RIA Novosti later on Wednesday, adding there were "no personnel changes" at this point.

Treason charges mean that the defendants could be handed a sentence of up to 20 years in prison. The treason charges also mean any trial will not be public due to its sensitive nature.

[Feb 16, 2018] What is the definition of a fake social media account ? What is the crime for operatine a fake social medial account? Is this the standard by which we will all be judged?

Notable quotes:
"... So, did Mueller address the crime committed by the then FBI head who refused to allow a FBI informant to address Congress on the Uranium One scam before it was authorized? Uh, that would be Mueller, his very self, so the answer is no. ..."
"... What is the definition of a "fake social media account"? What is the crime for operate a fake social medial account? Is this the standard by which we will all be judged? ..."
"... "In other words, anyone who was disparaging Clinton, may have "unwittingly" been a collaborator of the 13 Russian "specialists" who cost Hillary the election." No, not "in other words." That's not what he said at all. Idiot propagandist. ..."
"... And Hillary has done nothing criminal in the last 40 years. All of the evidence has been a fabrication. The Russians perfected time travel technology in the 70's, and have been conspiring against her and planting evidence since then. ..."
"... The goal of the MSM was the opposite. To unfairly disparage Trump and assist the election of Hillary Clinton. So why no indictments of members of the American MSM? ..."
"... What a bunch of horseshit. Mueller did nothing to locate just as much foreign or Russian support for Hillary. Grand Jury is just another one-sided court that passes judgment without any input from the other side. Now where have we seen that before? FISA. ..."
"... What is wrong with anyone doing what they want to support a candidate? If that is somehow illegal interference, why is Soros running loose in the world? ..."
"... I have a friend that was a US Federal Prosecutor. He once told me that the most un-American concepts that exist are grand juries and conspiracy laws. I'm sure he would have included FISA if it existed then. ..."
Feb 16, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Genby Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:51 Permalink

Mueller effectively called himself an idiot and degenerate.

13 people won against the whole apparatus of FBI (including Mueller). That makes FBI a herd of idiots and degenerates (including Mueller).

SirBarksAlot -> rgraf Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:44 Permalink

What crime?

Impersonating an American?

Practicing freedom of speech?

Trying to influence an election?

I don't see any crimes.

Joiningupthedots Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:31 Permalink

When does Mueller get charged? He is part of the fabric of the Clinton Gang along with Comey and others. How many people have posted derogatory comments about Clinton on ZH alone. This sounds like when they ludicrously charged and entire unit of the Chinese PLA.

FringeImaginigs Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:31 Permalink

Agreed, it's against the law to steal identities and operate bank accounts and all that. But really, compared to the fraud committed by just one bank - Wells Fargo- this is smal small potatoes.

And did I miss it or did the indictment not even mention the value of the ads bought on Facebook - $100,000. (nope, not missing any zeros).

And it all started in 2014 while Donald was playing golf and sticking his dick in some whore.

And a few ruskies got into the good ol USofA with false statements on their visas.

While the courts fought Trump on the fact that immigration from a few countries need to be stopped because there was not way of checking data. I get it - somebody driving too fast gets a speeding ticket, and Muellers investigation gets to issue an indictment. I'm sure we all feel better now.

Lostinfortwalton Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:32 Permalink

So, did Mueller address the crime committed by the then FBI head who refused to allow a FBI informant to address Congress on the Uranium One scam before it was authorized? Uh, that would be Mueller, his very self, so the answer is no.

Grandad Grumps Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:35 Permalink

What is the definition of a "fake social media account"? What is the crime for operate a fake social medial account? Is this the standard by which we will all be judged?

Or is it that Mueller has NOTHING and is too big of a corrupt idiot to admit it.

Rick Cerone Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:36 Permalink

Putin should define what a NGO is. He should tell the world how the US uses NGO's to destabilize elections. He wont do it because he's digging tunnels for the big day.

BigPunny Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:36 Permalink

"In other words, anyone who was disparaging Clinton, may have "unwittingly" been a collaborator of the 13 Russian "specialists" who cost Hillary the election." No, not "in other words." That's not what he said at all. Idiot propagandist.

devnickle Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:36 Permalink

And Hillary has done nothing criminal in the last 40 years. All of the evidence has been a fabrication. The Russians perfected time travel technology in the 70's, and have been conspiring against her and planting evidence since then.

What planet am I living on again? We have now stepped into the twilight zone. Facepalm.....

moneybots Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:55 Permalink

"Ultimately, and this is the punchline, the goal was to disparage Hillary Clinton and to assist the election of Donald Trump."

The goal of the MSM was the opposite. To unfairly disparage Trump and assist the election of Hillary Clinton. So why no indictments of members of the American MSM?

Montana Cowboy Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:03 Permalink

What a bunch of horseshit. Mueller did nothing to locate just as much foreign or Russian support for Hillary. Grand Jury is just another one-sided court that passes judgment without any input from the other side. Now where have we seen that before? FISA.

What is wrong with anyone doing what they want to support a candidate? If that is somehow illegal interference, why is Soros running loose in the world?

I have a friend that was a US Federal Prosecutor. He once told me that the most un-American concepts that exist are grand juries and conspiracy laws. I'm sure he would have included FISA if it existed then.

dot_bust Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:03 Permalink

The indictment adds that the Russians " were instructed to post content that focused on 'politics in the USA' and to 'use any opportunity to criticize Hillary and the rest (except Sanders and Trump -- we support them)' ."

Criticizing Hillary Clinton constitutes election interference? This is the dumbest thing I've ever heard.

Over half the United States said she was corrupt and morally bankrupt. Does that mean all those Americans interfered in the election?

Son of Captain Nemo Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:04 Permalink

"Some Defendants, posing as U.S. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities."

I thought this was our "shtick" for subverting and overthrowing government(s) since 194_?... Fast forward to 2012 and subverting sovereign foreign government(s) using other means then election(s) ( https://jasirx.wordpress.com/ )

Just ask this person ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CL_GShyGv3o ) who handed out cookies before starting an "overthrow of a sovereign government" right before a Winter Olympics?... And while we're on the subject of subversion of sovereign Nation(s) "OCONUS" ask this fat shit how it's going in the Middle East with it's "partners" ( https://southfront.org/meeting-between-us-state-secretary-and-lebanese- ) Nor should we forget 22 within the Russian diplomatic community in the last 6 years "eliminated" for early retirement courtesy of the U.S. government...

And if all this is true why isn't Muelller indicting government officials within the FBI Department of immigration and Homeland Security that would allow "some defendants" to impersonate Americans after 9/11 and the security infrastructure we built around U.S. to prevent "future attacks" that were obviously (here illegally)???...

On second thought DON'T ANSWER THAT!!!

atabrigade Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:05 Permalink

Our enemies are not overseas. They are right here at home.

Son of Captain Nemo -> atabrigade Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:13 Permalink

That did this ( http://www.ae911truth.org/ ) to their own to grab oil everyplace else they didn't control it!

Concertedmaniac Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:08 Permalink

What a complete load of horseshit. Waste of time and money while the crimes of the clintons and collaborators remain unpunished, including Mueller himself.

wobblie Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:08 Permalink

"Mueller describes a sweeping, years-long, multimillion-dollar conspiracy by hundreds of Russians aimed at criticizing Hillary Clinton and supporting Senator Bernie Sanders and Trump"

Only in the idiot world of Liberalism and Conservatism is this not a laughable statement.

Stupid fucks.

https://therulingclassobserver.com/

Obamaroid Ointment Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:10 Permalink

13 Russian bots to get life sentences in Twitter jail? Is a prisoner exchange with Putin for American bots a possibility?

[Feb 16, 2018] The Russiagate Intelligence Wars What We Do and Don t Know

Steele dossier became hot potato for anti-Trump color revolution plotters. That's why probably 13 Russians were extracted from the back pocket
Feb 16, 2018 | www.thenation.com

In a recent interview, James Clapper, who served as President Obama's director of national intelligence, said explicitly that the Intelligence Community Assessment itself had nothing whatsoever to do with the dossier. "We briefed, John [Brennan, then CIA director] and I, briefed the president-elect [Trump] at the time, on January 6. He viewed what we presented to him, which had very high confidence levels in what we presented him, which by the way, a point I'll make, had nothing to do with the dossier. We did not draw on the dossier. The dossier, the infamous dossier, was not a part of our Intelligence Community Assessment," said Clapper. "His first reaction to it was that this caused a question about the legitimacy of his election."

Jeffrey Harrison says: February 16, 2018 at 6:08 pm

It's interesting that the Russians set this all up to boost Trump and disparage Three Names before Trump even announced he was running. The basic set up for this was going on in 2014 whereas Trump announced in 2015.

Carla Skidmore says: February 16, 2018 at 7:29 pm

No, not really. Trump was making gestures of interest in the presidency in 2012

Jeffrey Harrison says: February 16, 2018 at 8:30 pm

Pfui. He also made noises about running in the 2012 election. People don't set up organizations to do stuff just on the off chance that some politician or wannabe is going to run. These guys ain't got nothin'.

It's been a year since Mueller went to work and what's he got? A couple of Republican political operatives being political operatives. Their crime was not reporting to the USG that they were working for Ukraine.

Now we're down to social media posts. You're probably one of those people who say, I saw it on the internet so it must be true. If the government is going to be upset about crap they see on social media from foreign parties, they need to start by telling said social media that they can't solicit advertising from foreign entities with political overtones as facebook did of RT.

Francis Louis Szot says: February 16, 2018 at 6:05 pm

Apparently, it comes down to trolls who planted various "fake news" stories.

Stipulate to all of that; the worst of it.

How does THAT begin to stack–up against the murderous coup that the USA OPENLY fomented in the Ukraine a couple of years earlier by bankrolling dozens of Non-governmental organizations whose sole purpose was "regime change"?

Maybe come back to me about all of this when the FBI can convincingly prove that the Russian government armed and funded a Neo–nazi para–military group that assaulted and burned–down the North Carolina State House.

Clark M Shanahan says: February 16, 2018 at 3:44 pm

I'm hoping the hush-money passed on to two of Trump's romantic caprices, during the election, gets traction.

Tell me, as soon as you can, when having skepticism on the Russia/Election Meddling story is finally permitted. I heard tell, we've lately dropped the "Treason" narration. Now the spin du jour is that Trump & Co were all duped by them clever Ruskies.

Whatever floats your boat.

[Feb 16, 2018] Mueller indicts non-existent Internet Research Agency, also known as Putin's Troll Factory in Saint Petersburg

Feb 16, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Petri Krohn | Feb 16, 2018 2:36:54 PM

BREAKING: Mueller indicts non-existent Internet Research Agency , also known as Putin's Troll Factory in Saint Petersburg.

Mueller Accuses Russians of Pro-Trump, Anti-Clinton Meddling - Bloomberg

U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller unveiled the details of a widespread and coordinated campaign by Russians to influence the U.S. presidential election in favor of Donald Trump, delivering on his initial mandate by the Justice Department.

In an indictment disclosed in Washington on Friday, Mueller describes a sweeping, years-long, multimillion-dollar conspiracy by hundreds of Russians aimed at criticizing Hillary Clinton and supporting Senator Bernie Sanders and Trump. He charged 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities and accused them of defrauding the U.S. government by interfering with the political process.

The Internet Research Agency, a Russian organization, and the defendants began working in 2014 to interfere in U.S. elections, according to the indictment. They used false personas and social media while also staging political rallies and communicating with "unwitting individuals" associated with the Trump campaign, it said.

Click here to read the indictment in full.

The documents point to a broader conspiracy beyond the pages of the indictment, saying the grand jury has heard about other people with whom the Russians allegedly conspired in their efforts.

[Feb 16, 2018] Mueller Drops Hammer with Indictment of 13 Russians in Election Meddling Conspiracy Breitbart

Notable quotes:
"... New York Times' ..."
Feb 16, 2018 | www.breitbart.com

Bloomberg News cited a "person with knowledge" of Mueller's investigation in a report on Friday afternoon to note that this indictment is just the beginning of actions to be expected and avenues to be explored by Mueller in the coming months ahead. Bloomberg's Chris Strohm wrote .:

Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his prosecutors haven't concluded their investigation into whether President Donald Trump or any of his associates helped Russia interfere in the 2016 election, according to a person with knowledge of the probe. Friday's indictment of a St. Petersburg-based "troll farm" and 13 Russian nationals should be seen as a limited slice of a comprehensive investigation, the person said. Mueller's work is expected to continue for months and also includes examining potential obstruction of justice by Trump, said the person, who requested anonymity to discuss an investigation that is largely confidential.

The indictment targets 13 Russians as well as Internet Research Agency, LLC, which is a Saint Petersburg-based organization that pushes influence operations on behalf of the Russian government. The indictment alleges that those 13 Russians and Internet Research Agency, as well as fellow Russian firms Concord Management and Consulting LLC and Concord Catering,

knowingly and intentionally conspired with each other (and with persons known and unknown to the Grand Jury) to defraud the United States by impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the government through fraud and deceit for the purpose of interfering with the U.S. political and electoral processes, including the presidential election of 2016.

The scheme, the indictment alleges, began as far back as 2014 and continued until after the 2016 presidential election. U.S. intelligence authorities and officials say the Russians intend to engage in similar actions in 2018's midterm elections here in the United States, and future elections thereafter.

While the indictment does not say how much money these Russian entities spent on this, it does say that Concord and Russian oligarch and Vladimir Putin ally Yevgeny Prigozhin "spent significant funds to further" the operations of Internet Research Agency and "to pay the remaining defendants" along with others not charged in this indictment but employed by Internet Research Agency.

In a Friday report filed from Saint Petersburg, the New York Times' Neil MacFarqhuar noted that Prigozhin is a Russian oligarch with deep connections to Putin.

"Despite his humble, troubled youth, Mr. Prigozhin became one of Russia's richest men, joining a charmed circle whose members often share one particular attribute: their proximity to President Vladimir V. Putin," MacFarqhuar wrote . "The small club of loyalists who gain Mr. Putin's trust often feast, as Mr. Prigozhin has, on enormous state contracts. In return, they are expected to provide other, darker services to the Kremlin as needed."

Prigozhin himself, per the Times quoting him via Russian state media outlet Ria Novosti, responded to the indictment in dark terms.

"The Americans are very impressionable people, they see what they want to see," Prigozhin said. "I have a lot of respect for them. I am not upset at all that I ended up on this list. If they want to see the devil, let them see him."

The Mueller indictment alleges that these Russian actors engaged in paid and other social media efforts as well as staging political rallies and sowing discord in the United States using identity politics by propping up causes like Black Lives Matter, pro-Islamic causes, religious entities, and more. And they did it by posing as U.S. persons with falsified or stolen identities. The indictment reads:

Defendants, posing as U.S. persons and creating false U.S. personas, operated social media pages and groups designed to attract U.S. audiences. These groups and pages, which addressed divisive U.S. political and social issues, falsely claimed to be controlled by U.S. activists when, in fact they were controlled by Defendants. Defendants also used the stolen identities of real U.S. to post on ORGANIZATION-controlled social media accounts. Over time, these social media accounts became Defendants' means to reach significant numbers of Americans for purposes of interfering with the U.S. political system, including the presidential election of 2016." Some of these Russia-based Defendants, the indictment alleges, "traveled to the United States under false pretenses for the purpose of collecting intelligence" and obtained and "procured and used computer infrastructure" that was partially American-based "to hide the Russian origin of their activities and to avoid detection by U.S. regulators and law enforcement.

The indictment also details contacts that these Russians, posing as Americans with assumed or stolen identities, had multiple contacts with "unwitting" campaign officials with President Trump's campaign.

Internet Research Agency, the indictment says, had a "strategic goal to sow discord in the U.S. political system" and that the Defendants "posted derogatory information about a number of candidates, and by early to mid-2016, Defendants' operations included supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump ('Trump Campaign') and disparaging Hillary Clinton." The indictment reads:

Defendants made various expenditures to carry out those activities, including buying political advertisements on social media in the names of U.S. persons and entities. Defendants also stages political rallies inside the United States, and while posing as U.S. grassroots entities and U.S. persons, and without revealing their Russian identities and ORGANIZATION affiliation, solicited and compensated real U.S. persons to promote or disparage candidates. Some Defendants, posing as U.S. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who is overseeing Mueller's investigation after the recusal of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, said in a press appearance announcing these indictments that no real U.S. persons who communicated with these fake U.S. persons who were really Russians actually knew that they were talking with Russians about these activities. Presumably, Rosenstein's comments would include the various Trump campaign officials and associates who were in contact with them. Rosenstein said at the press conference:

There is no allegation in this indictment that any American had any knowledge, and the nature of the scheme was the Defendants took extraordinary steps to make it appear as though they were ordinary American political activists even going so far as to base their activities on a virtual private network based here in the United States. If anybody traced it back to that first jump, they would appear to be Americans.

Rosenstein also said there is nothing in this indictment that suggests that the outcome of the election was impacted. "There is no allegation in the indictment of any effect on the outcome of the election," Rosenstein said.

But the allegation does detail a sophisticated scheme by which Russians tried to influence the American political discourse at such a volatile time in U.S. politics -- and that they did it through "fraud and deceit" by "making expenditures in connection with the 2016 U.S. presidential election without proper regulatory disclosure" and "failing to register as foreign agents carrying out political activities within the United States" as well as "obtaining visas through false and fraudulent statements."

The indicted Russian organization Internet Research Agency allegedly created a team of "specialists" who were "tasked to create social media accounts that appeared to be operated by U.S. persons" then "divided into day-shift and night-shift hours and instructed to make posts in accordance with the appropriate U.S. time zone." Internet Research Agency also allegedly "circulated lists of U.S. holidays so that specialists could develop and post appropriate account activity" and that said specialists were "instructed to write about topics germane to the United States such as U.S. foreign policy and U.S. economic issues."

They created social media groups designed to enflame the fringes of American society, including pushing Black Lives Matter, immigration control, religious groups, and certain geographic areas inside the United States. Examples cited in the indictment include accounts called things like Blacktivist, United Muslims of America, Army of Jesus, Secured Borders, South United, and Heart of Texas.

"By 2016, the size of many ORGANIZATION-controlled groups had grown to hundreds of thousands of online followers," the indictment says.

The Defendants also allegedly bought social media ads starting in or around 2015 designed to promote their controlled entities, "spending thousands of U.S. dollars every month." They falsely made a Twitter account called @TEN_GOP to make it appear as though they were the Republican Party of Tennessee, a major political party in a U.S. State.

As Rosenstein detailed in the press conference, the indictment also explains how the Russians allegedly hid their Russian identities by buying "space on computer servers located inside the United States in order to set up virtual private networks ('VPNs')."

"Defendants and their co-conspirators connected from Russia to the U.S.-based infrastructure by way of these VPNs and conducted activity inside the United States -- including accessing online social media accounts, opening new accounts, and communicating with real U.S. persons -- while masking the Russian origin and control of the activity," the indictment says.

They also stole U.S. persons' identities -- or used stolen identities -- to engage in this scheme so they could create PayPal accounts. The indictment says:

In or around 2016, Defendants and their co-conspirators also used, possessed, and transferred, without lawful authority, the social security numbers and dates of birth of real U.S. persons without those persons' knowledge or consent. Using these means of identification, Defendants and their co-conspirators opened account at PayPal, a digital payment service provider; created false means of identification, including fake driver's licenses; and posted on ORGANIZATION-controlled social media accounts using the identities of these U.S. victims. Defendants and their co-conspirators also obtained, and attempted to obtain, false identification documents to use as proof of identity in connection with maintaining accounts and purchasing advertisements on social media sites.

Regarding the 2016 election, the Defendants' efforts began per the indictment as far back as 2014 -- and over time became clearer as to their intentions. "They engaged in operations primarily intended to communicate derogatory information about Hillary Clinton, to denigrate other candidates such as Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, and to support Bernie Sanders and then-candidate Donald Trump," the indictment says.

In line-item number 45 on page 17 of the indictment, it says that the Russians "also used false U.S. personas to communicate with unwitting members, volunteers, and supporters of the Trump Campaign involved in local community outreach, as well as grassroots groups that supported then-candidate Trump."

"These individuals [the American Trump backers referenced] and entities at times distributed the ORGANIZATION's materials through their own accounts via retweets, reposts, and similar means," the indictment says. "Defendants and their co-conspirators then monitored the propagation of content through such participants."

In addition, via an Instagram account controlled by the Russian Internet Research Agency called "Woke Blacks," in the weeks before the general election the account encouraged American minorities not to vote at all. Another Russian-controlled Instagram account called "Blacktivist" urged black people to vote for Green Party candidate Jill Stein, something that would hurt Hillary Clinton's chances. And in early November 2016, the indictment says a Russian controlled "United Muslims of America" account encouraged Muslims not to vote for Clinton.

The indictment also says that the Russians from April 2016 through November 2016, while using false identities, "began to produce, purchase, and post advertisements on U.S. social media and other online sites expressly advocating for the election of then-candidate Trump or expressly opposing Clinton."

"Defendants and their co-conspirators did not report their expenditures to the Federal Election Commission, or register as foreign agents with the U.S. Department of Justice," the indictment says about the ads.

In addition, to pay for the ads, the Russians "established various Russian bank accounts and credit cards, often registered in the names of fictitious U.S. personas created and used by the ORGANIZATION on social media." They also allegedly used PayPal accounts.

The ads, several examples of which are detailed on line-item number 50 in the indictment on page number 20, are expressly political pleas to vote for Trump or oppose Clinton.

Perhaps even more significantly, the indictment alleges that these Russian operatives engaged in the staging of political rallies in the United States to further their objectives, starting approximately in June 2016.

"To conceal the fact that they were based in Russia, Defendants and their co-conspirators promoted these rallies while pretending to be U.S. grassroots activists who were located in the United States but were unable to meet or participate in person," the indictment says, adding that the Russians used their social media presence and contacts at they had spent years building to promote the rallies.

One particularly interesting tidbit comes on line-item 53 on page 21, where it says the Russian-controlled group "United Muslims of America" promoted a rally titled: "Support Hillary. Save American Muslims," a July 9, 2016 rally in Washington, D.C.

"Defendants and their co-conspirators recruited a real U.S. person to hold a sign depicting Clinton and a quote attributed to her stating 'I think Sharia Law will be a powerful new direction of freedom,'" the indictment says. "Within three weeks, on or about July 26, 2016, Defendants and their co-conspirators posted on the same Facebook page that Muslim voters were 'between Hillary Clinton and a hard place.'"

In June, July, and August 2016, the indictment says, other pro-Trump Russian-controlled social media accounts organized and promoted a variety of pro-Trump or anti-Clinton rallies in New York and "offered money to certain U.S. persons to cover rally expenses."

They also pushed to create pro-Trump rallies in Florida around this time, and in Pennsylvania. Then, after the election, the Russians organized rallies for and against then-President-elect Donald Trump.

In the case of the Florida efforts, the indictment details how the Russians created a false U.S. persona named "Matt Skiber" in August 2016 to communicate with real people connected with the Trump campaign. The indictment says:

On or about August 15, 2016, Defendants and their co-conspirators received an email at one of their false U.S. persona accounts from a real U.S. person, a Florida-based political activist identified as the 'Chair of the Trump Campaign' in a particular Florida county. The activist identified two additional sites in Florida for possible rallies. Defendants and their co-conspirators subsequently used their false U.S. persona accounts to communicate with the activist about logistics and an additional rally in Florida.

The Russians then allegedly used an Instagram account they controlled to buy ads to push the rally. The indictment continues:

On or about August 18, 2016, the real 'Florida for Trump' Facebook account responded to the false U.S. persona 'Matt Skiber' account with instructions to contact a member of the Trump Campaign ('Campaign Official 1') involved in the campaign's Florida operations and provided Campaign Official 1's email address at the campaign domain donaldtrump.com. On approximately the same day, Defendants and their co-conspirators used the email address of a false U.S. persona, joshmilton024@gmail.com, to send an email to Campaign Official 1 at that donaldtrump.com email account

In the email, which is partially quoted, the Russian posing an American writes to the unidentified unassuming Trump campaign official that they are organizing a rally on Aug. 20, 2016, to support Trump. The Russian wrote:

Let us introduce ourselves first. 'Being Patriotic' is a grassroots conservative online movement trying to unite people offline [W]e gained a huge lot of followers and decided to somehow help Mr. Trump get elected. You know, simple yelling on the Internet is not enough. There should be real action. We organized rallies in New York before. Now we're focusing on purple states such as Florida.

The email, per the indictment, identifies "thirteen 'confirmed locations' in Florida for the rallies and requested the campaign provide 'assistance in each location.'"

They also sent money via wire transfer to a separate U.S. person "to build a cage large enough to hold an actress depicting Clinton in a prison uniform" then communicated again with a second Trump campaign official via official email -- and then the Russians used the fake "Matt Skiber" Facebook account to communicate with a real third Trump campaign official in Florida. The indictment then details several other rallies in Florida, New York, and Pennsylvania that the fake Russians helped organize, including payment via interstate wire transfer for costs.

That all is part of count one in the indictment, Conspiracy to Defraud the United States. Count two, Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud and Bank Fraud, as well as counts three through eight -- all Aggravated Identity Theft charges -- all build upon many of the revelations in the first part of the indictment.

[Feb 16, 2018] The defendants began working in 2014 - so one year before the Trump candidacy was even announced - to interfere in U.S. elections

Feb 16, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

dexter_morgan Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:03 Permalink

The Russian organization named in the indictment - the Internet Research Agency - and the defendants began working in 2014 - so one year before the Trump candidacy was even announced - to interfere in U.S. elections, according to the indictment in Washington. They used false personas and social media while also staging political rallies and communicating with "unwitting individuals" associated with the Trump campaign, it said.

2014.......um, yeah, what a crock of bullshit.

Seriously though, what is illegal about what they did? Sowing discord? Hell CNN and all of Soros' org would be guilty of the same thing wouldn't they? Isn't 'sowing discord' like the main mission of the CIA, both here and in other countries?

Not a lawyer, but seems this cannot hold up in court.

[Feb 16, 2018] The United States, which has interfered in the domestic affairs of nearly every country on the planet, including not only elections but armed attacks, government overthrows and assassinations, was terribly hurt by some Facebook ads placed by people who conspired to defraud this helpless government. The horrors!

Feb 16, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Don Bacon | Feb 16, 2018 6:18:32 PM | 47

The United States, which has interfered in the domestic affairs of nearly every country on the planet, including not only elections but armed attacks, government overthrows and assassinations, was terribly hurt by some Facebook ads placed by people who conspired to defraud this helpless government. The horrors!

from the indictment

From in or around 2014 to the present, in the Dustrict of Columbia and elsewhere, Defendants, together with others known and unknown to the grand Jury, knowingly and intentionally conspired to defraud the United States by impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the Federal Election Commission, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the U.S. Department of State in administering federal requirements for disclosure of foreign involvement in certain domestic activities. . . here

[Feb 16, 2018] Isn t sowing discord like the main mission of the CIA, both here and in other countries? .  Is the Internet Research Agency a CIA hacking group?

Feb 16, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

dexter_morgan Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:03 Permalink

The Russian organization named in the indictment - the Internet Research Agency - and the defendants began working in 2014 - so one year before the Trump candidacy was even announced - to interfere in U.S. elections, according to the indictment in Washington. They used false personas and social media while also staging political rallies and communicating with "unwitting individuals" associated with the Trump campaign, it said.

2014.......um, yeah, what a crock of bullshit.

Seriously though, what is illegal about what they did? Sowing discord? Hell CNN and all of Soros' org would be gulty of the same thing wouldn't they?

Isn't 'sowing discord' like the main mission of the CIA, both here and in other countries?

Not a lawyer, but seems this cannot hold up in court.

Noktirnal Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:14 Permalink

Sounds to me like they're being indicted for exercising free speech.

Does that only apply to citizens?

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

It restricts Congress .

I believe political speech is the most protected form of speech. I think there's a Supreme Court ruling on that topic.

B-but the Russians conspired ... to commit free speech. They obstructed ... by speaking . (The story doesn't mention if what was said was true.)

Mr. Mueller, please stop wasting our time and money.

SirBarksAlot Fri, 02/16/2018 - 17:09 Permalink

I'm re-posting this from an earlier post someone else made. The Internet Research Agency is a CIA hacking group! The best way to get information is to make it up. Everything what we know now about the so-called "Kremlin trolls from the Internet Research Agency paid by Putin's favorite chef," came from one source, a group of CIA spies that used the mascot of Shaltay-Boltay, or Humpty-Dumpty, for their collective online persona.

http://thesaker.is/a-brief-history-of-the-kremlin-trolls/

[Feb 16, 2018] Did Russians tried to imitate Israelis?

So 13 Russians managed materially influence the USA elections. Nice... As ne ZeroHedge commenter noted "13 Russians can change the course of US history by going on-line and posting stuff. Okay, sure I buy that BS"
Feb 16, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Tachyon5321 Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:42 Permalink

This makes Mueller look like a clown.

For starters, MIKHAIL IVANOVICH BYSTROV is the former head of the Police in Moscow...While Yevgeny Viktorovich Prigozhin is a businessman(Friend of Putin) with high-end Russian restaurants all across the country(In Russia).

So now Russia will go after the NSA trolls and charge them with interfering with their election, which we did do...

Kernighan Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:23 Permalink

Part of the PsyOps going on as the US public (and really much of the world) becomes MORE and MORE familiar with the Deep State operation undertaken by three letter agencies, FBI and DOJ, and the White House in 2016 and expanded after Nov 2016. The Special Council now needs to provide material to the rabid "Resist" crowd, and even though this entire set of indictments cannot possibly demonstrate a material alteration of election results, in so large a country as the USA, this would serve to feed the crowd who will believe this all to be "definitive". These are primarily political battles, since no one is going to bring Russian nationals over to the USA to serve time. This helps also to show "results" of the expensive and mostly useless Special Counsel project.

Posa Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:26 Permalink

Wow. Desperation time for Mueller.

Around page 12 the indictments says a total of two (2) Russian nationals entered the US and toured for a short while. How they were able to get rally permits, hand out fliers organize speakers etc isn't stated. So those claims remain entirely bogus.

The rest of the nefarious plot includes re-posting articles from the MSM or BLM sites... zero impact... Pathetic nonsense.

Meanwhile Israeli agents and dual-passport types pour hundreds of millions into the election. Crickets.

escapeefromOZ -> SamAdams Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:28 Permalink

AIPAC against the wall . Shoot the bastards

JSBach1 -> SamAdams Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:54 Permalink

Yes they are paid for their hasbara work:

Plan: using students who go on delegations abroad on behalf of the Union (approximately 250 students a year) for hasbara purposes. Before each delegation the students will undergo a hasbara workshop on behalf of the Ministry of Hasbara, which will give them the tools and information to contend with the questions and the critical salvos and the ability to present in their stead "a different Israel."

After selecting the students for a delegation, the students will undergo a hasbara workshop given on behalf of the Ministry of Hasbara, where the logistics are coordinated by the Department head. This training will be a condition for the student's going on any delegation this year.

https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/israels-pretty-face-h

"With Israel coming under ever-increasing criticism for its human rights abuses and war crimes against Palestinians and other Arabs, changing the subject is a common tactic for Israel's PR flacks and official propaganda or hasbara efforts .

Attempting to shift the conversation over to Israeli technology in this way is sometimes dubbed " techwashing ." Similar tactics include " greenwashing " – the effort to market Israel as supposedly environmentally friendly (something Israel21c is involved in too ) – and " pinkwashing " – the effort to market Israel as LGBT-friendly and progressive as well as a welcoming destination for gay-male sex tourism .

The main point about such cynical strategies is that, even were these stories all true, it would not in any way mitigate Israeli atrocities , such as its most recent round of slaughter in the Gaza Strip "

https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/asa-winstanley/israel-tech-site-pa

Hasbara "War rooms" at universities in Isreal

"But in fact, these are campaigns of organized lying, orchestrated with government-approved talking points and crowdsourced volunteers and stipend recipients," Shunra added..."

"...Working in 30 languages, the students working this comment far target online forums including so called "anti-Israel" pages on Facebook and comments sections of online media."

https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/israel-student-union-

The Israel Project's 2009 GLOBAL LANGUAGE DICTIONARY ( Hasbara communication guide )

https://www.transcend.org/tms/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/sf-israel-proj

mkkby -> SamAdams Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:49 Permalink

Require valid ID to vote. How many mexicans vote multiple times? How many *activists* get bused around from county to county, voting multiple times?

The blue team loves this so no go. It's racist to require ID because blacks are too stupid to get one That's the democrats talking out of both sides of their mouths.

brianshell -> SamAdams Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:58 Permalink

Nominated for best comment.

Mueller may be trying to jump the shark and improve on Ken Starr's operation by diverting to the other side of the investigation.

Perhaps his prime directive is to obfuscate until the end of Trump's term.

War Machine -> SamAdams Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:18 Permalink

RT.com had to register as a foreign agent - and you know what, fair enough...

But AIPAC has been allowed to violate the law requiring them to do so by a DOJ that, admin to admin, never enforces the law as to Israel.

Meanwhile the Jewish/Israel Lobby, with the eager support of US politicians, are continuing their assault on the 1st Amendment. They want to criminalize boycotts and criticism of the state/govt of Israel.

And the media is, predictably, silent - and for the record a number of Jewish lawyers and libertarian writers have been vociferous in their opposition to the assault on free speech - but the ADL/AIPAC/neocon matrix is all in to criminalize speech that is both fair and factual.

Which brings me to this indictment, gents.

I'm no lawyer, and would be very happy to get comment/criticism/correction - but how in the fuck is posting anti-Hillary (or anti-anyone) comments on facebook not protected 1st Amendment speech?

So far as I know it is not a crime to pretend to be someone else on the internet absent actual fraud/theft. Israelis quite literally are paid to do so all the time, and while irritating - that's part of free speech and the free exchange of ideas.

This indictment, apart from more Deep State poking the bear, and distraction from the FBI's obstruction of justice and felony misrepresentation to a federal judge... is a direct assault on the 1st Amendment.

How is it 'interfering' with an election to present people with ideas? If presenting slanted, even false information to voters is now a crime - why arent the executives of CNN and the Times under indictment?

The Left's hatred of Trump (and I'm not a fan given his moves in Syria and deficit spending etc) has made them absolutely boond to the dangers to civil liberties, nevermind world war.

Apart from the idea of some internet trolls having any influence relative to the cia/dni controlled media being absurd on its face, how can an 'indictment' to 'conspire' to talk about some political issue even be brought given the 1st Amendment?

If they can indict some Russians for pretending to be Joe Six-pack to help a candidate - who else can they try to jail for saying the Establishment candidate is a lying cheating warmonger who belongs in prison?

Stuck on Zero -> SamAdams Fri, 02/16/2018 - 15:41 Permalink

Add George Soros to the list of enemies of humanity.

any_mouse -> SamAdams Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:01 Permalink

What about Soros?

The "Russians are coming!" is ridiculous.

Cloward Priven were Russians?

Alinsky was Russian?

Cruz was a Canadian until 2014. The People had enough with Obama.

The People had enough of Bush-Clinton from 1989 through 2008.

The odds are that Trump is controlled opposition.

The election process has been corrupted internally since the beginning.

Lincoln was installed by Northeast Industrialists and the Media. His opponent that was promoted by the large newspapers was the Democrat least likely to threaten Lincoln in an election.

Dr. Ron Paul received zero Media attention in 2012. Trump was in the news 24 by 7 in 2016.

escapeefromOZ -> Belrev Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:26 Permalink

Those people are only guilty of trolling and that is not a crime . I found ridiculous in the extreme that Mueller thinks he can seize the property of the agency in question is Russia ! ah,ah,ah, Nobody has told that ass hole that the USA has no Jurisdiction in other countries ? ah,ah,ah !

And then how many times that USA has in the past and in the present tried to interfere with Russian elections and those of other countries ? What about the coup d'etat in Kiev and the colored revolution ? Has that buffoon got no memory ?

That buffoon is out of his mind , Who believes his bullshit ? There are a lot personalities in the USA that buy favorable comments to their Facebook accounts . Thera ere firms specialist in opening FAKE accounts and writing fake favorable comments for customers . I am talking about tens of thousands and much more of favorable comments on Facebook and others social BLS networks . In conclusion this is a fake trumped up operation to continue with the farce

of the Russian / Trump investigation .

t0mmyBerg -> escapeefromOZ Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:36 Permalink

Exactly. They tried to change hearts and minds. Are we going to criminilaize politics then? PACs and millions of peoplel try to argue often using anonymous or false identities. What a load of horseshit this whole thing is.

Btw, the number 13 is a great number. That was my hockey jersey. Also my class rank after my bitch choir and glee club teacher got the grade for my last 2 years and gave me cs and ds despite the fact i was the president of the group. Dropped me from like 5th to 13th. Still pisses me off. And the Templars were burned at the stake on Friday the 13th werent they? Good enough for me

NumberNone -> Precious Hawk Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:49 Permalink

If we are chasing down foreign nationals attempting to influence the elections, I'm waiting on the indictment against Vincente Fox.

"Former Mexican President Vicente Fox is urging US voters to look before they leap. The global consequences would be dramatic if Donald Trump won the presidency, he told DW's James Blears in Mexico City."

I'm with Schiff, there's ample evidence of election hacking if you are willing to see it.

BlueGreen -> NumberNone Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:11 Permalink

So true, the hypocrisy and I'll say glee at watching the unintended consequences of their ill planned "findings", comments/ general stupidity (iq's just high enough to be a danger to society, but not high enough to keep society working well)

Killtruck -> Joe Davola Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:03 Permalink

Any news on the Secret Society indictments, Bob?

nmewn -> TeethVillage88s Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:36 Permalink

There is against the violation of a persons civil rights, perjury, using government resources for personal gain, knowingly introducing falsified evidence to a federal court, unmasking individuals found by use of said falsified evidence, theft and destruction of government documents.

Broadly called, a conspiracy and obstruction of justice ;-)

New_Meat -> nmewn Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:03 Permalink

I'm going to start a go-fund-me page to buy mirrors for Rosenstein and Mueller, and the love-birds (who I surmise have had their wings clipped) and others.

nmewn -> New_Meat Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:34 Permalink

As a point of interest, Rosenstein is the only one left of those who signed off on the now known to be specious FISA warrant or it's reauthorizations after this known false evidence had been submitted to a federal court.

The reauthorizations are key, they knew what the "Steele intel dossier" was by then.

And Rosenstein appointed Mueller on the basis of Comey stealing government documents and giving them to an unauthorized friend.

Basically, Mueller is illegitimate in everyone's eyes except the federal bureaucracies...hell, even one of the FISA judges recused himself after it came to light that the Hillary campaign paid Steele for what is, in essence, tabloid muck raking.

New_Meat -> nmewn Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:51 Permalink

Maybe we'll be able to afford two mirrors for Rosie, so he can be doubly sure who the bastards are.

Meanwhile, Mueller handing down these "indictments" is further making a joke of his investigation. He's surrounded himself with all of the Hillary partisans, keeping them closer. It will be worth all of the money and all of the spilled (digital) ink for the investigation to be a self-discrediting evolution.

I'll disagree with your "everyone" statement--it is only creeping to 50%. It needs to get up to landslide numbers (>60% or so) for a true black hole implosion.

That'll be fun ;-)

- Ned

SDShack -> nmewn Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:30 Permalink

Hey Bob, ever hear of Uranium One?

NumberNone -> nmewn Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:54 Permalink

This honestly looks like a surrender moment. He's saying there were bad people trying to portray Hillary in a negative light (as if anyone really needed to do that) but Trump's team were unwitting participants if they participated.

He had to show something for his work but clearly there's no trail of deliberate scheming and collusion leading to the Trump team. He even throws in the caveat that they were also working for Sanders.

Stick a fork in it..this is over and MSM once again are full of shit for all to see no matter how they spin it.

nmewn -> NumberNone Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:42 Permalink

In a land where freedom of speech is sacred, Mueller has just indicted thirteen people for exercising freedom of speech.

It will be interesting to see how those fine, freedom loving leftists try to spin a defense of him for that ;-)

Belrev -> Joe Davola Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:04 Permalink

13 Russians can influence US elections meanwhile US CIA and State Department spend $1 BIllion every year on opposition groups inside Russia without success.

curbjob -> Belrev Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:08 Permalink

"13 Russians can influence US elections meanwhile US CIA and State Department spend $1 BIllion every year on opposition groups inside Russia without success."

... and a billion is but a drop in the bucket compared to what Israel has spent influencing US elections over the last 4 decades.

Kafir Goyim -> Belrev Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:15 Permalink

Israel has built a money machine. They spend money to bribe politicians in the form of campaign contributions and PACS. They tell those politicians to vote on large aid packages to Israel. They take a small portion of the money from those aid packages and spend it to bribe politicians in the form of campaign contributions and PACS ... rinse and repeat forever. A wonderful machine that they have built for themselves to endlessly siphon blood and treasure from the USA for their benefit.

Lanka -> Kafir Goyim Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:42 Permalink

There are more than 50 Dem congressional reps that are dual citizens; start with deporting them.

FoggyWorld -> Kafir Goyim Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:57 Permalink

You left out trips to Israel for our congresspeople and their spouses to see Bethlehem up close and personal.

i poop pink ic -> Kafir Goyim Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:32 Permalink

Yes. THIS is the real scandal. Israhell using U.S. aid (U.S. taxpayer dollars) to buy off U.S. politicians who then undermine the U.S. taxpayers by increasing Israhelli control over U.S. politics.

silverserfer -> Belrev Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:16 Permalink

yes more JEW propaganda and their GOY puppets chasing their tails.

This investigation should be directed at Israel!

escapeefromOZ -> curbjob Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:37 Permalink

But according to Mueller the Zionist can buy members of Congress and the Senate , but Russian trolls are not allowed ........ ah,ah,ah,ah,

So there is the "good interference" , when it is done by the Rogue state in the Middle East and then there us the " bad " interference created by foreign trolls .

Pandelis -> Belrev Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:08 Permalink

it is like investing in bitcoin last january and getting out last december ... small cash big return - i suppose got to know how to do it.

TeethVillage88s -> Joe Davola Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:09 Permalink

Must be fake, Meuller never did anything in like 15 years as head of FBI.

ReasonForLife -> Joe Davola Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:13 Permalink

What a Mule!

BabaLooey -> Joe Davola Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:04 Permalink

Akin to trying to arrest Ivan The Terrible....

Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeuuuuuler's in Dodge....Ivan's drinking vodka, watching porn and laughing...

..in a Gorky bar....

...................THIS is what we are blowing tax dollars for????

Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck me!

Mueller? Bueller? ..................anyone?

Justin Case -> Joe Davola Fri, 02/16/2018 - 16:12 Permalink

Concord Catering was serving Smirnoff for sure. That's very influential and definitely swayed voters. The rest on the list are back ups in case.

What a farce this witch hunt is. USSA is on cruise control and everyone is in the back of the Winnebago swinging at each other. This is neglect of the electorate and the country as it spirals into bankruptcy. (again)

Moe Hamhead -> Pandelis Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:02 Permalink

Yeah, and it's Friday!

Moonchichi -> Pandelis Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:33 Permalink

" Pandelis ParkAveFlasher Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:00 Permalink "

innit

shankster -> Pandelis Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:37 Permalink

Nyet!

Dilluminati -> Pandelis Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:38 Permalink

Defendants posted derogatory information about a number of candidates, and by early to mid-2016, Defendants' operations included supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump ("Trump Campaign") and disparaging Hillary Clinton .

(now what could these people possibly tell me about that ridiculous cunt Hillary that I didn't already know?)

divingengineer -> Pandelis Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:56 Permalink

"13 an interesting number ... it does not signal good things for the world"

I think its more complex than that.

1 and 3 are both prime numbers, 1 X 3 = 3 a prime number. 1+3=4, not a prime number. 3+4=7, another prime number!!!

What does all this mean? I have no fucking clue.

Russian boogey men.

Croesus -> Pandelis Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:23 Permalink

"Defendants also staged political rallies inside the United States, and while posing as U.S. grassroots entities" -

Meanwhile, George Soros runs free...give me a mother****ing break.

Bastiat -> ParkAveFlasher Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:01 Permalink

Is he indicting the DNC for subverting the primaries?

Normalcy Bias -> Bastiat Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:03 Permalink

The 'Real' Russian was named Seth Rich, but since he was MURDERED, Mueller can't indict him.

silverserfer -> Normalcy Bias Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:17 Permalink

I would love to abuduct Muller and tatoo "His name was Seth Rich" on his forehead.

BigJim -> Bastiat Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:08 Permalink

No, they were Americans who did that (or, at least, "dual citizens"). "Subverting" democracy in the US is only illegal if carried out by foreign agents.

... with the exception of Saudi Arabia, Israel, Qatar...

GUS100CORRINA -> Bastiat Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:11 Permalink

Special Counsel Robert Mueller Indicts 13 Russians For Hacking During US Election

My response: ROFL!!!! Since they (MARXIST PROGRESSIVE LIBERALS) could NOT get TRUMP, they have now decided that they are going after the RUSSIANS directly.

This action is probably really going to piss off PUTIN rightly or wrongly.

WAR DRUMS ARE BEATING AGAIN.

I now believe that a market CRASH is a real distinct possibility.

TeethVillage88s -> GUS100CORRINA Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:16 Permalink

Exactly, 17 intel agencies failed since the birth of the internet... then super icon steps in & makes them all look impotent.

- ROFLMAF

Omen IV -> Bastiat Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:18 Permalink

Mueller is cherry picking a small effect in the market place when there was huge subversion by Hillary et al - In NYC 125,000 registrations went missing and "the party in charge fired" at the Board of Elections who had direct line via family to Hillary - overwhelming number denied access to primary vote were young new residents - white people to Brooklyn - primarily Bernie voters

things elsewhere the same - Ohio / Iowa but not as much in your face

This is beginning of hit job by Mueller - is it sustainable?

Gold Pedant -> ParkAveFlasher Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:01 Permalink

...for Killary.

And afterward, thousands tried to subvert!

Thomas Paine -> ParkAveFlasher Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:03 Permalink

More likely with Russians

jfp661 -> ParkAveFlasher Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:27 Permalink

I'd like to see from Muellers analysis how many votes that swayed. Curious if it's as many as the illegal votes allowed in California. I'm sure the Russians had a huge impact in West Virginia (being sarcastic)

Bemused Observer -> khnum Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:48 Permalink

Let's allow them to hack the next one and see who they pick...maybe we should start thinking outside the box here...

God, this whole thing must just be an unending source of confusion for Putin. Guy's got to be watching this, thinking, "What the fuck is wrong with these people?". In fact, anyone expecting the US to be a source of leadership in the future has to feel like Shelley Duvall after she found out that Jack Nickolsen's months of work consisted only of typewritten sheets with "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy." over and over and over again...Her face as she flips through all those pages is EXACTLY how I imagine Putin's expression as he watches this unfold...

"Oh my god, it's so much worse than I ever suspected, and winter's only half over..."

. . . _ _ _ . . . Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:06 Permalink

I don't see the word "hack" anywhere except in the title.

http://theduran.com/new-evidence-shows-dnc-server-files-were-downloaded

Thebighouse Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:07 Permalink

Where are the AwAN brothers? and washermouthoutwithsoap-schultz?

Who had seth rich killed.

Why isn't podesta behind bars with obummer for interference with an election.

Why isn't the fbi focused on arresting for assault all the assholes threatening either people or institutions when

they state they want to harm them.

Mueller belongs in hell with clintons and podesta and obummer and all the politicized FBI jerks. Treason is punishable by hanging

ChanceIs -> Thebighouse Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:16 Permalink

How about where was Mueller when the Tsarnov (sp) brothers (Boston Marathon) when Vladimir warned him about them.

I see that on January 5th, somebody phoned the FBI about the soon-to-be Florida shooter. This is not to be confused with the September contact which the FBI couldn't track down.

So where was the FBI? Certainly not manning up and resigning in protest about all of the corruption anybody could see/smell on the 7th floor. Probably watching porn and whacking off on the job like so many SEC employees.

Robert Peters: SEC pornography scandal shows harms of obscene material

New York City, N.Y., Apr 24, 2010 / 07:02 am ( CNA/EWTN News ).-

The exposure of workplace pornography use at the Securities and Exchange Commission while the 2008 financial crisis was unfolding shows ........

https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/robert_peters_sec_pornography_s

Dumpster Elite Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:11 Permalink

SO, according to this indictment, if I'm reading it correctly, we also need to indict every single foreigner that spoke highly, in a positive way, or tried to influence an American citizen, about Killary? Looks like a lot of indictments to be handed out to pretty much every Globalist on the planet.

Mike Masr Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:12 Permalink

I thought Mueller's job was to find out if Trump colluded with Russia.

Over a year now and he hasn't found jack shit!

So now he is going off in different directions. Small fry Russian actors on social media.

There are MUCH bigger crooks in the DOJ and FBI to catch.

Roger Ramjet Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:13 Permalink

Per the indictment, "Individuals had a strategic goal of sowing discord in the U.S. political system"

That's a crock, we really didn't need Russian help to make our political system any more broken and divided than it already is.

Come on, do you really believe the Russians were responsible for the absolute dismal choice of the two candidates we were stuck with in the last election? And that their effort made any difference in the outcome.

The indictment seems a bit of a stretch.

Full Court Lug Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:15 Permalink

LOLOLOLOLOL

Read the documents. Read what Muller is actually accusing them of:

- Buying a few thousand bucks worth of ads

- Holding a sparsely attended fake rally

- Trying to contact members of the Trump campaign without identifying themselves (this right here is the full limit of their vaunted "collusion", if it's even true)

Are any of those things even illegal? Does anyone, anywhere, actually think any of those things influenced the election in the slightest?

Meanwhile the DNC was paying Russian spies for fake intel so they could use illegally-obtained surveillance warrants to spy on US citizens and try to stage a coup on a duly-elected President.

Tick tock, mofos

Dumpster Elite -> Full Court Lug Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:19 Permalink

These indictments are basically just Mueller running out of ideas to prolong his meddling. He had to do something, or else Congress was gonna start saying, "OK, so what do you have? This has gone on long enough."

Tiger Rocks Dale Fri, 02/16/2018 - 13:42 Permalink

Look at the phrasing, "hacking the elections" which is a general term. Doesn't specify they hacked any specific voting machines. Per CNBC

So basically trolling online. 13 Russian internet trolls swayed the ENTIRE election, therefore the entire anti-Russian rhetoric, sanctions and a new cold war is justified!.

CARONTE-RAPTOR Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:04 Permalink

20 security and espionage agencies! Hundreds of billions in counterintelligence operations around the world. A fire-armed uprising around RUSSIA! And with just 13 people a few accounts in faceboock and a few thousand dollars, what does not billions spent on political campaigns achieve ???? Damn Russians!!??

FoggyWorld -> J J Pettigrew Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:54 Permalink

Rosenstein explained it differently. He claims that these ads or whatever were done for the benefit of both candidates because Russia wanted to sow dissension and rip the US apart.

Soros did a much more effective job than that and certainly spent more than the Russians.

But Mueller doesn't chose to see things as they were and are.

hooligan2009 Fri, 02/16/2018 - 14:23 Permalink

so ...is israel about to be indicted because of the spies listed on this link?

https://govbanknotes.files.wordpress.com/2017/06/us-senators-and-repres

all libtard socialist demoNrats - except Cantor.

[Feb 16, 2018] Some defendants, posing as U.S. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities

Notable quotes:
"... First defendant: The Internet Research Agency. On a very ..."
"... "Fake News and Bots May Be Worrisome, but Their Political Power Is Overblown" [ New York Times ]. "Much more remains to be learned about the effects of these types of online activities, but people should not assume they had huge effects. Previous studies have found, for instance, that the effects of even television advertising (arguably a higher-impact medium) are very small. According to one credible estimate, the net effect of exposure to an additional ad shifts the partisan vote of approximately two people out of 10,000. In fact, a recent meta-analysis of numerous different forms of campaign persuasion, including in-person canvassing and mail, finds that their average effect in general elections is zero." ..."
Feb 16, 2018 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

New Cold War

"The office of special counsel Robert Mueller on Friday announced indictments against 13 Russian nationals and a trio of Russian entities on charges related to the Kremlin's efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election" [ Politico ]. "Charges in the indictment include conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud and aggravated identity theft "Some defendants, posing as U.S. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities," the indictment said." Here's the indictment . Finally we get to look at some evidence? First defendant: The Internet Research Agency. On a very quick read: The theory of the case is that the defendants used social media to "sow discord"; a search on "vot" yields zero hits.

Realignment and Legitimacy

UPDATE "Fake News and Bots May Be Worrisome, but Their Political Power Is Overblown" [ New York Times ]. "Much more remains to be learned about the effects of these types of online activities, but people should not assume they had huge effects. Previous studies have found, for instance, that the effects of even television advertising (arguably a higher-impact medium) are very small. According to one credible estimate, the net effect of exposure to an additional ad shifts the partisan vote of approximately two people out of 10,000. In fact, a recent meta-analysis of numerous different forms of campaign persuasion, including in-person canvassing and mail, finds that their average effect in general elections is zero."

"From Where I Sit, The Trump Era Began In 2014" [ FiveThirtyEight ]. "Numbers can't prove that 2014 was a pivotal year for the Trumpian political era to come, but they can show it was a year when Americans' institutional trust bottomed out, something that would come into play in 2016. A few days after the election, I wrote about the erosion of trust in American institutions over the past decade. There was a link, I wrote then, between our loss of trust and electing a man who promised to start a new American order. And in 2014, overall trust in American institutions, which started falling in the mid-2000s, hit 31 percent -- its lowest point since Gallup starting tracking the metric in 1993 . Trump's ultimately brilliant political intuition was to burrow deep into this recess of the American mind and to reflect back the sense of creeping disarray. He capitalized on racial and economic fears, but his campaign kickoff proclamation that "the American dream is dead" didn't just resonate with the people who might have voted for populist and nativist campaigns of the past. Trump's appeal was broad, resonating with the relatively well-off and the well-educated ."

UPDATE "A significant minority of Americans say they could support a military takeover of the U.S. government" [ WaPo ]. "Our research finds that, in fact, substantial numbers of U.S. adults say they would embrace ruptures in the constitutional order [and I thought I was the only one who used this term routinely], which is in keeping with Bright Line Watch findings that experts believe that measures of U.S. democracy have declined under President Trump . In 2017, about 25 percent of Democrats and 30 percent of Republicans said they favored a military intervention if the country faced rampant crime or corruption. The figure below shows the average support for a military coup when there is widespread corruption." More Third World stuff! Indeed: "U.S. public opinion on these questions resembles that of Argentina, Chile and Uruguay, countries with a history of military coups and dictatorships." Let us not, however, focus only on the military! We have an intelligence community, too!


Rob P , February 16, 2018 at 2:23 pm

Don't see anything about the DNC or Podesta hacks in the indictment. Isn't that what this whole thing was about? Changing the 'Russian hacking' meme to mean social media posts was an amazing feat of goalpost-moving.

Lambert Strether Post author , February 16, 2018 at 3:28 pm

And changing "Russian puppet" to "Russian hacking" is also impressive.

That said, there may be more shoes to drop. People who are smarter about investigations than I am can determine whether this is indicting the small fry to catch the big fish, or not. As a layperson, it's not clear to me how you do that by indicting Russians, if, as my very quick reading of the Politico story (and not the indictment), witting cooperation by the Trump campaign is ruled out. No doubt there will be a good deal of commentary to come!

DJG , February 16, 2018 at 4:00 pm

Rob P and Lambert Strether: The "vindicated" regular Democrats on my FacetoBook thread are passing around Greg Sargent's WaPo column. Sargent's summary of the indictments:

"Falsely posing as Americans to operate social media to influence voters; employing active efforts to suppress the turnout of minority groups; creating additional fictional U.S. personas to sway public opinion; purchasing large numbers of ads on social media; and much more."

Russkies? Uber? Israelis? Saudis? Tell me more. And are those fictional personas swaying our opinions, ohh, say, Apple and other tax avoiders?

Next up? The Democratic Party praying for a coup, on the assumption that their children won't be dragged off to jail to be tortured. (Ask South Americans how that worked out.)

Carolinian , February 16, 2018 at 6:18 pm

Next up? The Democratic Party praying for a coup

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2018/02/16/a-significant-minority-of-americans-say-they-would-support-a-military-takeover-of-the-u-s-in-the-right-circumstances/

25 percent of Dems in the poll were open to a military takeover.

foghorn longhorn , February 16, 2018 at 6:23 pm

I am pretty sure it has already occurred.

Sid Finster , February 16, 2018 at 4:33 pm

What, you think that these indicted Russians will now flip?

This is a pure PR exercise.

rd , February 16, 2018 at 5:38 pm

I think these indictments are to show credibility of a Russian issue.

I think the Popadopolous and now potentially Gates roll-ups are the missing links to connect the dots between the campaign and the ongoing operation by the Russians. This really is how organized crime investigations generally work.

I don't think the claim was ever that the campaign started the Russians doing things; simply that they were willing to work with them towards a mutual goal. This would be similar to the GOP claims about the Steele dossier; they leave out that it was begun by a conservative GOP group and Clinton only got involved when the conservatives dropped out of the race.

Sid Finster , February 16, 2018 at 4:32 pm

Worse, now it is apparently unlawful for a non-US citizen to express in public a preference with regard to a US election.

This in spite of the fact that UK and other non-US papers do so all the time, and even put their preferences out there ON THE INTERNET where innocent trusting Americans may stumble upon them. Not only that, the the Guardian even organized phone banks for Brits to call Ohio voters in key districts and urge them to vote for Team D.

Surely indictments are forthcoming, right? But let's consider the implications – does Yves need to check the citizenship status of every poster in a political thread? If not, is she aiding and abetting "fraud against the United States"? Is Yves now an unindicted co-conspirator?

Seriously, the implications of this move are terrifying. If that weren't enough, the indictment was careful to mention Bernie Sanders' name at every opportunity. The insinuation being that if you support any candidate outside the mainstream of Team D or Team R, then you are supporting ..

RUSSIA!

Jim Haygood , February 16, 2018 at 2:23 pm

Inquisitor Mueller indicts thirteen Russians:

"They engaged in operations primarily intended to communicate derogatory information about Hillary Clinton, to denigrate other candidates such as Lyin' Ted Cruz and Little Marco Rubio, and to support Bernie Sanders and then-candidate Donald Trump."

-- page 17 of Mueller's indictment

So now we know -- Bernie's candidacy was foisted on us by Russians sending thousands of tainted $27 donations. /snark

' The mountains labored, and brought forth a ridiculous mouse. ' -- Latin proverb

Carolinian , February 16, 2018 at 3:19 pm

Don't laugh. He'd better get a lawyer.

Hardball Chicago style.

MyLessThanPrimeBeef , February 16, 2018 at 3:38 pm

It's interesting only Russians were interfering.

No other foes, or friends, bothered.

Why couldn't the Russians have just sent better-looking cheerleaders from Moscow to this country? Why did they keep their armies of beauties in their Motherland?

Tom Stone , February 16, 2018 at 4:14 pm

It's not interference when Israel does it.

Sid Finster , February 16, 2018 at 5:17 pm

Hell, UK papers express their preferred outcomes for US elections all the time. And ZOMG! on the INTERNET! where innocent Americans might stumble across them and be "influenced"! ZOMG!

The Guardian even organized phonebanking campaigns to urge Ohio voters in key districts to vote Team D.

So when is the indictment coming down?

Lambert Strether Post author , February 16, 2018 at 3:44 pm

The "sowing discord" argument makes me crazy, because it's exactly like "outside agitators" in the segregated South. If only it weren't for Russian bots, "those damned n*****s voters wouldn't have gotten uppity."

I mean, does anybody really believe there was no discord in American politics before the 2016 elections and social media?

(This is not a theory of the case; something can be wrong and/or illegal even if there are no ill effects; but to my cynical mind, this is all about creating a casus belli , and that does require ill effects, I would think.)

Lee , February 16, 2018 at 3:54 pm

"Is sowing discord a crime?" I googled it and got something interesting and perhaps instructive:

http://english.khamenei.ir/news/4438/Global-arrogance-sowing-discord-among-Muslims-since-2-centuries

Carolinian , February 16, 2018 at 4:02 pm

Speaking as a Southerner I'd say you are exactly right. The assumption seems to be that simple minded voters are the puppets of rabble rousers rather than intelligent beings able to think for themselves.

foghorn longhorn , February 16, 2018 at 4:11 pm

A couple of things,
Watched a lot of russians in the Olympics over the years and these names look incredibly fake.
Usually when you drop news on a Friday afternoon of a three day weekend you want it to get buried.

MIKHAIL IVANOVICH BYSTROV,
MIKHAIL LEONIDOVICH BURCHIK,
ALEKSANDRA YURYEVNA KRYLOVA,
ANNA VLADISLAVOVNA BOGACHEVA,
SERGEY PAVLOVICH POLOZOV,
MARIA ANATOLYEVNA BOVDA,
ROBERT SERGEYEVICH BOVDA,
DZHEYKHUN NASIMI OGLY ASLANOV,
VADIM VLADIMIROVICH PODKOPAEV,
GLEB IGOREVICH VASILCHENKO,
IRINA VIKTOROVNA KAVERZINA,
VLADIMIR VENKOV
YEVGENIY VIKTOROVICH PRIGOZHIN

NotTimothyGeithner , February 16, 2018 at 4:11 pm

America was pure as snow. In fact, Russians are responsible for Jim Crow. Bear with me. The Czar, an autocrat if there ever was one, sailed the White Fleet in support of Abraham Lincoln. Perhaps, the British and French would have intervened on behalf of the CSA, thus allowing the Southern states to secede. Logic dictates this would have meant no Jim Crow. Yes, slavery would have continued, but it would be in a different country.

Summer , February 16, 2018 at 4:54 pm

"Sowing discord"

Sounds like a typical election.

lyman alpha blob , February 16, 2018 at 5:15 pm

As I'm sure NC readers are aware, there are emails from the Clinton campaign talking about calling in favors with the media to promote Trump's primary campaign , the thought being Trump would be easier for Clinton to beat.

So if manipulating the media to promote Trump is a crime

Not sure why those debunking the Russiagate nonsense haven't been pushing this more.

Sid Finster , February 16, 2018 at 5:19 pm

Because manipulating an election is OK, except when a Russian person is accused.

voteforno6 , February 16, 2018 at 3:10 pm

Re: Mueller Indictments

As noted by Rob P above, there is no mention of email hacking. Maybe that's coming later, but I doubt it. Instead, they indicted alleged Russian operators of troll farms. The implication, I guess, is that these people somehow swayed the election in favor of Trump. Some questions I have:

– What was the volume of their social media posts? How does that compare to the total volume of election-related social media posts?
– When were these posts actually made? Did they all occur prior to the election?
– Did these troll farms make any posts in favor of Clinton? Were there other Russians posting items in favor of Clinton?
– Is there any indication that these posts had any demonstrable impact on the outcome of the election?

It would be interesting to see these people go on trial. I imagine that a competent defense attorney would have fun with discovery. But, there's a part of me that suspects that these Russians were indicted, with the expectation that they won't go on trial. After all, it's a lot easier to control the narrative, when there's nobody pushing back against it.

So, what we're left with is the impression that the Russians were responsible for all the bullshirt flying around during the election. Bullshirt being, of course, anything that was anti-Hillary, or promoted an opponent of hers. All the pro-Hillary stuff doesn't count, of course. I guess I'm a Russophile for asking the question, but is this really all that they've got?

Reply
voteforno6 , February 16, 2018 at 3:30 pm

Also, I haven't read the indictment, but is there any allegation that these troll farms were acting in any capacity on behalf of the Russian government?

Reply
PKMKII , February 16, 2018 at 3:46 pm

The indictment indicates that there was some pro-Hillary posts/activity, but the bulk of it was anti-Hillary/Pro-Trump. Posts were both prior to and after the election. It doesn't look like the indictment is outright arguing that their activities swayed votes, but just that the activities violated bank/wire fraud laws (including fraud via cryptocurrencies!) and electioneering laws (which does not mean that votes were swayed; handing out flyers too close to a polling site is a violation of electioneering laws).

Looks less like the ultimate smoking gun, and more like another move, such as with Manafort, to get the small fry to tell on someone higher up.

Reply
voteforno6 , February 16, 2018 at 4:08 pm

That's the expectation for how a criminal investigation should take place. But, this is not a normal criminal investigation. The small fry in this case are Russians, and I'm not sure if indicting them has the same impact that it would for, say, a similar group of Americans. How does Mueller flip these Russians? Doesn't he have to get them into custody first?

Reply
Elizabeth Burton , February 16, 2018 at 5:43 pm

Indeed. The article on this much ado about not much done by the BBC:

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said there was no allegation that any American was "a knowing participant in this illegal activity" nor was it alleged that the meddling altered the election outcome.

Which, of course, doesn't prevent the brainwashed from dancing with glee and attacking as a Trump supporter anyone who so much as points out the above. The least offensive response I've had today was that these things are incremental so this is likely just the starting point. It no longer matters whether the alleged interference had any effect on the election -- all sense of logic on this subject has evaporated even among people I know are intelligent enough they should know better.

Reply
edmondo , February 16, 2018 at 3:53 pm

So Mueller spent 12 months to come up with enough "evidence" to produce one episode of MTV's Catfish ?

Are they going to indict all those Democratic Party superdelegates who "colluded

Lambert Strether Post author , February 16, 2018 at 3:57 pm

Why I added the information on how hard it is to actually change opinion. IIRC, most of the contemporary hash tag tracking is coming from the highly dubious Hamilton68 dashboard, which is being treated as an authority even though, last I checked, they hadn't exposed their data or methods.

Adding, which is pretty funny, when you think about it; depending on whether the IRA was a contractor for the Russian government, and what its actual mission was*, the Russian government probably has a stronger case for fraud against them then Mueller does.

* Provoke a Bush-like blundering over-reaction?

PKMKII , February 16, 2018 at 4:41 pm

Putin's government overpaid for a intelligence tech contractor that promised way more than it was capable of delivering? Perhaps the Russians aren't so different from us after all.

Lee , February 16, 2018 at 4:17 pm

I guess I'm a Russophile for asking the question .

Yeah, you're sowing discord, which in some countries, other and the U.S., is a crime. Oh, wait .

ewmayer , February 16, 2018 at 5:45 pm

o "Fake News and Bots May Be Worrisome, but Their Political Power Is Overblown" [New York Times] -- Oh, I dunno, methinks the Grey lady is being far too pessimistic here. After all, the NYT's own fake-news project re. Saddam's WMDs 15 years back led to an actual large-scale hot war, $trillions in juicy defense contracts for US and foreign mercenary/logistics firms and upwards of a million dead Iraqis whose 'sacrifice', as former SoS and heroic liberal R2P goddess Madeleine Albright reminded us, was "worth it". So maybe the high-profile-ness and political connections of the fake news source might play a crucial role in its impact?

will_f , February 16, 2018 at 6:27 pm

Madeleine Albright made that comment in response to a publishing of a study which found that the US economic sanctions against Iraq resulted in the deaths of more than 500,000 children.

https://www.reddit.com/r/conspiracy/comments/3183zk/madeleine_albright_the_deaths_of_500000_iraqi/

Otherwise your point is valid. As Yves herself has mentioned regarding Judith Miller, the NYT did indeed publish a lot of "fake news" (also known as "propaganda") in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq.

[Feb 16, 2018] Meet the 13 Russians charged in Mueller probe

Was internet Reserach Agency a real company ? Here the author is thinking that they were a fake: A Brief History of the "Kremlin Trolls" by Scott Humor
Notable quotes:
"... Thirteen Russian nationals were charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States. Three defendants were also charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud. Five defendants were charged with aggravated identity theft. Here's a rundown: ..."
Feb 16, 2018 | www.kgw.com
Takeaways from Mueller's indictment of Russian nationals who meddled in 2016 election

More: Information warriors: Here's how the U.S. is combating 'fake news' from Russia

The defendants are accused of working in conjunction with the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency, which is also under indictment for allegedly conducting information operations to influence the 2016 election in the United States.

The Internet Research Agency operated what's become known as "troll farm" in Russian President Vladimir Putin's hometown that employed hundreds of English speakers to pose as Americans and gin up controversy and discord on Twitter, Facebook and other social media websites during the months leading up to the election.

The company, referred to as the "ORGANIZATION" in the indictment, "had a strategic goal to sow discord in the U.S. political system, including... supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump and disparaging Hillary Clinton," according to the indictment.

Thirteen Russian nationals were charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States. Three defendants were also charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud. Five defendants were charged with aggravated identity theft. Here's a rundown:

Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin

Prigozhin, 56, is a businessman from St. Petersburg who's been called "Putin's chef" by Russian media because his restaurants and catering businesses have hosted dinners between Putin and foreign dignitaries.

Prigozhin is on the list of those sanctioned by the U.S., according to the Associated Press.

Prigozhin is accused of funding the Internet Research Agency, through companies he controlled -- Concord Management and Consulting, and Concord Catering -- and using them to launch operations against America. He paid the "ORGANIZATION," all the rest of the defendants and other unnamed employees, the indictment said.

Prigozhin's co-defendants arranged through social media for a U.S. person to stand in front of the White House on May 29, 2016, three days before Prigozhin's birthday, with a sign saying "Happy 55th Birthday Dear Boss."

"The Americans are very impressionable people, they see what they want to see," Prigozhin reportedly told the Russian state news agency Ria Novosti on Friday. "I have a lot of respect for them. I am not upset at all that I ended up on this list. If they want to see the devil, let them see him."

Mikhail Ivanovich Bystrov

Bystrov allegedly was named the general director of the Internet Research Agency, and served as the head of various other entities it used to mask its activities, including Glavset LLC, where he was also listed as general director.

He is accused of holding regular meetings with Prigozhin around 2015 and 2016. Bystrov is a retired police colonel, according to Voice of America.

Mikhail Leonidovich Burchik

According to the indictment, Burchik was named executive director of the "ORGANIZATION" as of March 2014, holding the second-highest ranking position. During operations to interfere in the U.S. political system, including the 2016 presidential election, Burchik was a manager involved in operational planning, infrastructure and personnel.

Burchik is described in a 2015 New York Times report as a young tech entrepreneur connected to the "Masss Post" tool used to create bulk social media postings.

Aleksandra Yuryevna Krylova

Krylova worked for the IRA from around 2013 to at least November 2014, according to the indictment, and was its third-highest ranking employee. She allegedly entered the U.S. on false pretenses in June 2014 and traveled through Nevada, California, New Mexico, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, Louisiana, Texas and New York to "gather intelligence."

Sergey Pavlovich Polozov

Polozov "served as the manager of the IT department and oversaw the procurement of US. servers and other computer infrastructure that masked the Russian location when conducting operations within the United States," according to the indictment.

An unnamed co-conspirator who worked for the company traveled to Atlanta in November 2016, and shared information gathered with Polozov, according to the indictment.

He traveled to the U.S. to create virtual private networks to hide his organization's ties to Russia, while communicating with U.S. citizens, the indictment said.

Anna Vladislavovna Bogacheva

According to the indictment, Bogacheva oversaw the IRA's data analysis group, and allegedly traveled through the U.S. in 2014 to gather intelligence along with Krylova.

Together with Krylova, Bogacheva planned travel itineraries, purchased equipment such as cameras, SIM cards and disposable phones and discussed security measures, including "evacuation scenarios" for defendants who traveled to the U.S., the indictment said.

Maria Anatolyevna Bovda

Bovda worked at the company from November 2013 to October 2014 as head of the translator project.

The project "focused on the U.S. population and conducted operations on social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter," according to the indictment.

Robert Sergeyevich Bovda

Robert Bovda served as deputy head of the translator project and tried to travel to the U.S. under false pretenses to collect intelligence but could not obtain a visa, according to the indictment.

Irina Viktorovna Kaverzina

The defendant is accused of admitting her involvement in the operation and a subsequent coverup in an email to a relative in September last year, after Mueller's probe had started.

"We had a slight crisis here at work: the FBI busted our activity," Kaverzina allegedly wrote, "so I got preoccupied with covering tracks together with the colleagues."

She also wrote: "I created all these pictures and posts and the Americans believed that it was written by their people."

Dzheykhun "Jay" Aslanov

Aslanov was described by a manager at the ORGANIZATION's "troll farm" in St. Petersburg," according to an October interview on Moscow's Dozhd TV with former employee Alan Baskayev. Baskayev was the third former troll to identify Aslanov as a supervisor at the facility, according to the Moscow Times , which described the interview.

"Jay was a really bad manager: not the most competent in this field, well, frankly speaking, generally incompetent, but he had assistants," Baskayev told Dozhd TV.

Vadim Vladimirovich Podkopaev

Podkopaev allegedly was responsible for conducting U.S.-focused research and drafting social media content for the IRA, according to the indictment.

Gleb Igorevich Vasilchenko

Vasilchenko was allegedly "responsible for posting, monitoring, and updating the social media content" for many IRA-controlled accounts "while posing as U.S. persons or U.S. grassroots organizations."

Vladimir Venkov

Venkov allegedly "operated multiple U.S. personas, which he used to post, monitor, and update social media content," the indictment stated.

[Feb 16, 2018] BREAKING Mueller concludes Russians posted mean things on social media about Hillary Clinton

Feb 16, 2018 | theduran.com

BREAKING: Mueller concludes Russians posted mean things on social media about Hillary Clinton Mueller indicts 13 Russians and 3 companies for hacking the US election.

by Alex Christoforou February 16, 2018, 22:21 687 Views

[Feb 16, 2018] Kremlin quick to respond to Mueller's conclusion that 13 Russian nationals outsmarted America's democracy

Feb 16, 2018 | theduran.com

The indictment of 13 Russian nationals and three entities over allegations by the DOJ that Russians interfered in US elections – but "did not alter the outcome of the 2016 election" nor that any American was a knowing participant in this activity – are absurd, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Friday.

"13 people interfered in the US elections?! 13 against an intelligence services budget of billions? Against intelligence and counterintelligence, against the latest developments and technologies? Absurd? Yes," Zakharova wrote in a post on Facebook .

Then again, what else could she say.

Furthermore, as noted in the DOJ complaint, the funding for the Russian operation came from catering and management companies controlled by defendant Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin, a Russian businessman often referred to as "Putin's chef" in the media because his organizations had hosted dinners for Russian President Vladimir Putin and foreign leaders, the AP reported.

Prigozhin was quoted in Russian state media responding to the indictments, saying, "Americans are really impressionable people. They see what they want to see. I greatly respect them. I'm not upset at all that I am on this list. If they want to see the devil, let them see him."

This probably means that Russia will not exactly rush to extradite the 13 named officials to the US.

"Have you had any assurances by the Russians that they will provide these individuals for prosecution?"
Rosenstein: "We have no communications with the Russians about this. We will follow the ordinary process of seeking cooperation and extradition." https://t.co/oShWvKYDRW pic.twitter.com/vOT0iH6Cu0

-- CBS News (@CBSNews) February 16, 2018

[Feb 16, 2018] My favorite parts of this indictment: 1. Trump and his campaign are no longer involved, 2. the Russians did NOT influence the election, 3. they were supposedly advocating for Bernie as well as Trump.

Feb 16, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

frances , Feb 16, 2018 3:33:09 PM | 37

re:So Mueller indict russians for... talking about the american election in russia? What farce have this become? Posted by: Anon | Feb 16, 2018 3:15:09 PM | 35
Farce is certainly the operative word; two of the 13 Russians are the former head of Moscow Police and the other is a restaurateur friend of Putin.
And if there were " millions" spent then their is a financial paper trail certainly. Can't wait to see it...

My favorite parts of this indictment: 1. Trump and his campaign are no longer involved, 2. the Russians did NOT influence the election, 3. they were supposedly advocating for Bernie as well as Trump.


Lastly,so much "news" in the last few days; we have a possible Florida false flag, Russia hacking the world and now this. What are we not meant to see?? My first thought is they are moving forward with the Syrian chemical attack psy op; next week perhaps?

Anon , Feb 16, 2018 3:40:09 PM | 38
frances

Yeah, apparentlty these Russians sought to expand the political commentary and voice support for candidates, how is this even illegal? Ridiculous but this will give the anti-russia actors 100% more fuel for decades to come. That Trump will even talk with Putin is out of the question by now unfortunately. WW3 just came closer sigh.

stonebird , Feb 16, 2018 3:49:41 PM | 39
francis @37

One of the best bits about the indictement is the mention ;"arranging for a Real US person to stand in front of the White House in the district of Colombia with a sign that read; "Happy 55th birthday dear boss" (May 29, in 2016)" America must have trembled. (or maybe they were shaking with laughter?).

NemesisCalling , Feb 16, 2018 4:14:31 PM | 40
People read these accusational headlines, probably just the headlines, and it acts as a virus and penetrates the membrane of the collective subconscious, without even a moments thought to question the assertion.

In time, the virus breaks down the will of the rational consumer to weigh evidence fairly, though it is also aided by further bombardment of fake news, which increases the rate of infection. The virus then blossoms into a fairly beautiful and uniform flower with clean, geometric edges and universal appeal which catches the gaze of others and so is able to double the rate of infection from this secondary source.

This flower, the Ruskiesdidittous, is the result of haphazard propogation, though its ability to survive and thrive is notable due to a carrier population already enfeebled by a diet of Dr. Pepper and a lack of discernible vegetables.

I tremble for my countrymen.

Don Bacon , Feb 16, 2018 4:25:01 PM | 41
...adding to the remarks in #40...

The indictment includes charges not yet proven in a court of law, yet prominent Americans are treating the indictment as fact. from CNN:

>House Speaker Paul Ryan called the Russians' alleged actions "a conspiracy to subvert the process, and take aim at democracy itself." "We have known that Russians meddled in the election, but these indictments detail the extent of the subterfuge," Ryan said in a statement.

>Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement that given the indictments, Trump should "immediately" implement the Russia sanctions that Congress passed last summer to punish Moscow for its election meddling. "The administration needs to be far more vigilant in protecting the 2018 elections, and alert the American public any time the Russians attempt to interfere," Schumer said.

>House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said in a statement that the indictments "make absolutely clear" that Russians tried to influence the presidential election to support Trump's campaign and continue to try to interfere with our elections. "We are on the eve of the 2018 midterm elections," the statement added. "There is no time to waste to defend the integrity of our elections and our democracy."

>Robby Mook, Clinton's former campaign manager, tweeted: "The intelligence community has repeatedly told us Russia meddled. Now criminal indictments from DOJ. We were attacked by a foreign adversary. Will our Congress and President stand strong and take action? Or let it happen again?"

[Feb 14, 2018] Robert Mueller, who was FBI Director at that time of anthrax attack, buried the investigation and closed it as unresolved

Feb 14, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Daniel , Feb 12, 2018 7:19:23 PM | 26

Speaking of weird 9/11 stuff, what about The Donald Jr.'s wife opening a possible anthrax letter ?


Remember the murderous Anthrax terrorism that happened as Congress was passing the USA PATRIOT Act? Remember how our current VP, Pence testified to Congress about it being Saddam's fault?


And that anthrax strain actually was traced to US's Ames Biological Weapons lab?

And FBI Director at that time, Robert Mueller buried the investigation? What ever happened to that FBI Director who closed a murderous terrorist attack without having "solved" it?

[Feb 14, 2018] The Anti-Trump Coup by Michael S. Rozeff

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... One objective is to keep in place an anti-Russian policy. The coup's instigators want to prevent Trump from letting up on the pressure (sanctions) on Russia and from cooperating with Russia. The coup forces are all anti-Russia, and that serves to unite them. A second objective is to maintain the positions, power, and influence of the coup's seekers. ..."
"... This is a "seed crystal" coup. The model for the seed crystal coup is the Watergate scandal. The operational goal is to crystallize and solidify the disunited Trump opposition into a movement that has irresistible momentum. In much the same way that seed crystals can accelerate a phase change from liquid to solid, the coup perpetrators introduce reports, accusations, and leaks over time in order to create the impression that a widening scandal is occurring. Each component has no merit but the media accept them at face value and provide publicity that creates new adherents and coherence among the anti-Trump forces. The anti-Trump forces are anxious to replicate the success in getting Nixon to resign. ..."
"... The anti-Trump media are critical in this effort. The anti-Trump media keep up a drumbeat of anti-Trump reporting. They slant the news, manufacture stories, repeat them and create fake news. ..."
"... The media must paint Russia and Putin as enemies for this propaganda effort to succeed. The media provide a focal point that coordinates the coup's backers even if they never sit down and conspire with one another. Everyone can observe the media stories and through that the effects of their anti-Trump leaks, reports, and innuendos. This allows them to plan their next moves. ..."
"... Social media have played a role in uprisings during the Arab Spring. The same thing can happen in America. There is a host of groups who are anti-Trump on grounds other than Russia. They can coordinate through social media. These groups seek to de-legitimize Trump so as to maintain items on their agenda. Aides to Hillary Clinton's failed campaign are now piling on to the effort. ..."
"... Positing a coup attempt is the simplest and most comprehensive hypothesis that ties together and explains a host of known facts that we know have occurred. Being a model of events, it is imperfect; but it's better than no model because it still helps us to understand what's going on. We are not seeing a train of unconnected events that just happen to be anti-Trump. It is easier to understand it as a concerted effort going on to emasculate the Trump presidency and possibly see him replaced; and that effort is centered in the CIA. ..."
"... The second victim of the coup is Michael T. Flynn, who resigned as Trump's National Security Advisor after only three weeks in that post. Leaks of tapped phone calls showed that intelligence operatives were behind this shark attack ..."
"... Mainly, unnamed intelligence officials and operatives who are in the CIA or recently retired from such. A number of media outfits are exceptionally active in propagating negative headlines and stories about Trump and his administration. Elements of other intelligence agencies and departments of government are possibly involved. We do not know the names of those operating against Trump, and this is a weakness of the coup hypothesis. ..."
Feb 21, 2017 | www.lewrockwell.com

Q. Will the coup succeed in removing Trump from office?

A. Not in its present form. It is currently destined to fail because the investigating agencies and enemies of Trump haven't found a smoking gun against him on the basis of Russian ties or influence. No one can prove that Trump is being controlled by Putin, and so he won't resign for that reason. The coup will peter out unless it comes up with new and more explosive anti-Trump material that's not obviously specious or doubtful as much of the current material is. Furthermore, Trump hasn't yet counterattacked and he has plenty of ammunition.

Q. What are the objectives of the coup?

A. One objective is to keep in place an anti-Russian policy. The coup's instigators want to prevent Trump from letting up on the pressure (sanctions) on Russia and from cooperating with Russia. The coup forces are all anti-Russia, and that serves to unite them. A second objective is to maintain the positions, power, and influence of the coup's seekers.

Q. How is the coup being conducted?

A. This is a "seed crystal" coup. The model for the seed crystal coup is the Watergate scandal. The operational goal is to crystallize and solidify the disunited Trump opposition into a movement that has irresistible momentum. In much the same way that seed crystals can accelerate a phase change from liquid to solid, the coup perpetrators introduce reports, accusations, and leaks over time in order to create the impression that a widening scandal is occurring. Each component has no merit but the media accept them at face value and provide publicity that creates new adherents and coherence among the anti-Trump forces. The anti-Trump forces are anxious to replicate the success in getting Nixon to resign.

Q. What is the role of the establishment media in the coup?

A. The anti-Trump media are critical in this effort. The anti-Trump media keep up a drumbeat of anti-Trump reporting. They slant the news, manufacture stories, repeat them and create fake news. They try to convince the public that the coup's promoters are on the side of the angels (as in protecting national security and the election system's purity) and Trump is on the side of the devils (as in making concessions to a dangerous foe and being too respectful to Putin). The media must paint Russia and Putin as enemies for this propaganda effort to succeed. The media provide a focal point that coordinates the coup's backers even if they never sit down and conspire with one another. Everyone can observe the media stories and through that the effects of their anti-Trump leaks, reports, and innuendos. This allows them to plan their next moves.

Q. What is the role of social media in the coup attempt?

A. Social media have played a role in uprisings during the Arab Spring. The same thing can happen in America. There is a host of groups who are anti-Trump on grounds other than Russia. They can coordinate through social media. These groups seek to de-legitimize Trump so as to maintain items on their agenda. Aides to Hillary Clinton's failed campaign are now piling on to the effort.

These groups are distinct from the coup's perpetrators. They might launch a coup attempt of their own or they may become a front line of the existing coup, that is, merge with it as a force to reckon with that Trump has to address.

Q. How do you answer those who deny that there is an ongoing coup attempt?

A. Positing a coup attempt is the simplest and most comprehensive hypothesis that ties together and explains a host of known facts that we know have occurred. Being a model of events, it is imperfect; but it's better than no model because it still helps us to understand what's going on. We are not seeing a train of unconnected events that just happen to be anti-Trump. It is easier to understand it as a concerted effort going on to emasculate the Trump presidency and possibly see him replaced; and that effort is centered in the CIA.

The people behind the coup are operating partly openly and partly covertly. They are not so far using military means or physically threatening means so that the coup is not clearly recognizable as such. They are more like sharks circling their intended victims, with each one being hungry and attacking its own, as opposed to making pre-arranged attacks. Their coordination is achieved through publicity and a common goal.

We can see these attacks, and they show a pattern, a common goal and a recognizable origin, primarily among U.S. intelligence agencies, especially the CIA.

Q. What attacks are you referring to?

A. The first victim was Paul Manafort who resigned in mid-August 2016 as Trump's campaign chairman. His lobbying efforts on behalf of the ousted head of Ukraine, Victor Yanukovych, resulted in a dirt campaign against him. That attack stemmed from anti-Russian sources in Ukraine whom the U.S. government supports. Attacks from foreign origins conceal their true U.S. origins. They are a sign of a CIA operation behind the scenes.

The second victim of the coup is Michael T. Flynn, who resigned as Trump's National Security Advisor after only three weeks in that post. Leaks of tapped phone calls showed that intelligence operatives were behind this shark attack .

Q. Who is behind the coup attempt ?

A. Mainly, unnamed intelligence officials and operatives who are in the CIA or recently retired from such. A number of media outfits are exceptionally active in propagating negative headlines and stories about Trump and his administration. Elements of other intelligence agencies and departments of government are possibly involved. We do not know the names of those operating against Trump, and this is a weakness of the coup hypothesis.

... ... ...

Michael S. Rozeff [ send him mail ] is a retired Professor of Finance living in East Amherst, New York. He is the author of the free e-book Essays on American Empire: Liberty vs. Domination and the free e-book The U.S. Constitution and Money: Corruption and Decline .

[Feb 14, 2018] Is John Brennan the Mastermind behind Russiagate by Mike Whitney

Notable quotes:
"... Bottom line: Despite the denials of former-CIA Director John Brennan, the dossier may have been used in the ICA. ..."
"... Most disturbing is the fact that Steele reportedly received information from friends of Hillary Clinton. (supposedly, Sidney Blumenthal and others) ..."
"... These are just a few of the questions Steele will undoubtedly be asked if he ever faces prosecution for lying to the FBI. But, so far, we know very little about man except that he was a former M16 agent who was paid $160,000 for composing the dubious set of reports that make up the dossier. We don't even know if Steele's alleged contacts or intermediaries in Russia actually exist or not. ..."
"... Some analysts think the whole thing is a fabrication based on the fact that he hasn't worked the Russia-scene since the FSB (The Russian state-security organization that replaced the KGB) was completely overhauled. Besides, it would be extremely dangerous for a Russian to provide an M16 agent with sensitive intelligence. And what would the contact get in return? According to most accounts, Steele's sources weren't even paid, so there was little incentive for them to put themselves at risk? All of this casts more doubt on the contents of the dossier. ..."
"... What is known about Steele is that he has a very active imagination and knows how to command a six-figure payoff for his unique services. We also know that the FBI continued to use him long after they knew he couldn't be trusted which suggests that he served some other purpose, like providing the agency with plausible deniability, a 'get out of jail free' card if they ever got caught surveilling US citizens without probable cause. ..."
"... Since then, GOP lawmakers have been quietly buzzing about allegations that an Obama-era State Department official passed along information from allies of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that may have been used by the FBI to launch an investigation into whether the Trump campaign had improper contacts with Russia. ..."
"... Regular readers of this column know that we have always believed that the Russiagate psyops originated with Brennan. Just as the CIA launched its disinformation campaigns against Saddam Hussein and Muammar Gadhafi, so too, Russia has emerged as Washington's foremost rival requiring a massive propaganda campaign to persuade the public that America faces a serious external threat. In any event, the demonizing of Russia had already begun by the time Hillary and Co. decided to hop on the bandwagon by blaming Moscow for hacking John Podesta's emails. The allegations were never persuasive, but they did provide Brennan with some cover for the massive Information Operation (IO) that began with him. ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... It all started with Brennan. After Putin blocked Brennan's operations in both Ukraine and Syria, Brennan had every reason to retaliate and to use the tools at his disposal to demonize Putin and try to isolate Russia. The "election meddling" charges (promoted by the Hillary people) fit perfectly with Brennan's overall strategy to manipulate perceptions and prepare the country for an eventual confrontation. It provided him the opportunity to kill two birds with one stone, to deliver a withering blow to Putin and Trump at the very same time. The temptation must have been irresistible. ..."
"... But now the plan has backfired and the investigations are gaining pace. Trump's allies in the House smell the blood in the water and they want answers. Did the CIA surveil members of the Trump campaign on the basis of information they gathered in the dossier? Who saw the information? Was the information passed along to members of the press and other government agencies? Was the White House involved? What role did Obama play? What about the Intelligence Community Assessment? Was it based on the contents of the Steele report? Will the "hand-picked" analysts who worked on the report vouch for its conclusions in or were they coached about what to write? How did Brennan persuade the reluctant Comey into opening a counterintelligence investigation on members in the Trump campaign when he knew it would be perceived as a partisan attempt to sabotage the elections by giving Hillary an edge? ..."
"... Brennan, Clapper, Clinton, Blumenthal, Abedin, Mills, Podesta, Strzok, McCabe whoever might have been mastermind or mere footsoldier in the drama, one cannot escape the fact that the Capo di tutti capi is Barak Hussein Obama, even if only on the "Buck stops here" principle. ..."
"... Last September Brennan began a two-year stint as a distinguished fellow for global security at Fordham Law School. Brennan is a 1977 college graduate of this Jesuit institution which undoubtedly laid the groundwork for a career of duplicity and malfeasance ..."
Feb 13, 2018 | www.unz.com

The report ("The Dossier") that claims that Donald Trump colluded with Russia, was paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign. The company that claims that Russia hacked DNC computer servers, was paid by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign. The FBI's counterintelligence probe into Trump's alleged connections to Russia was launched on the basis of information gathered from a report that was paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign.

The surveillance of a Trump campaign member (Carter Page) was approved by a FISA court on the basis of information from a report that was paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign.

The Intelligence Community Analysis or ICA was (largely or partially) based on information from a report that was paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign. (more on this below)

The information that was leaked to the media alleging Russia hacking or collusion can be traced back to claims that were made in a report that was paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign.

The entire Russia-gate investigation rests on the "unverified and salacious" information from a dossier that was paid for by the DNC and Hillary Clinton Campaign. Here's how Stephen Cohen sums it up in a recent article at The Nation:

"Steele's dossier was the foundational document of the Russiagate narrative from the time its installments began to be leaked to the American media in the summer of 2016, to the US "Intelligence Community Assessment" of January 2017 .the dossier and subsequent ICA report remain the underlying sources for proponents of the Russiagate narrative of "Trump-Putin collision." ("Russia gate or Intel-gate?", The Nation)

There's just one problem with Cohen's statement, we don't really know the extent to which the dossier was used in the creation of the Intelligence Community Assessment. (The ICA was the IC's flagship analysis that was supposed to provide ironclad proof of Russian meddling in the 2016 elections.) According to some reports, the contribution was significant. Check out this excerpt from an article at Business Insider:

"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)

Bottom line: Despite the denials of former-CIA Director John Brennan, the dossier may have been used in the ICA.

In the last two weeks, documents have been released that have exposed the weak underpinnings of the Russia investigation while at the same time revealing serious abuses by senior-level officials at the DOJ and FBI. The so called Nunes memo was the first to point out these abuses, but it was the 8-page "criminal referral" authored by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley and Senator Lindsey Graham that gave credence to the claims. Here's a blurb from the document:

"It appears the FBI relied on admittedly uncorroborated information, funded by and obtained for Secretary Clinton's presidential campaign, in order to conduct surveillance of an associate of the opposing presidential candidate. It did so based on Mr. Steele's personal credibility and presumably having faith in his process of obtaining the information. But there is substantial evidence suggesting that Mr. Steele materially misled the FBI about a key aspect of his dossier efforts, one which bears on his credibility."

There it is. The FBI made a "concerted effort to conceal information from the court" in order to get a warrant to spy on a member of a rival political campaign. So –at the very least– there was an effort, on the part of the FBI and high-ranking officials at the Department of Justice, to improperly spy on members of the Trump team. And there's more. The FBI failed to mention that the dossier was paid for by the Hillary campaign and the DNC, or that the dossier's author Christopher Steele had seeded articles in the media that were being used to support the dossier's credibility (before the FISA court), or that, according to the FBI's own analysts, the dossier was "only minimally corroborated", or that Steele was a ferocious partisan who harbored a strong animus towards Trump. All of these were omitted in the FISA application which is why the FBI was able to deceive the judge. It's worth noting that intentionally deceiving a federal judge is a felony.

Most disturbing is the fact that Steele reportedly received information from friends of Hillary Clinton. (supposedly, Sidney Blumenthal and others) Here's one suggestive tidbit that appeared in the Graham-Grassley" referral:

" Mr. Steele's memorandum states that his company "received this report from REDACTED US State Department," that the report was the second in a series, and that the report was information that came from a foreign sub-source who "is in touch with REDACTED, a contact of REDACTED, a friend of the Clintons, who passed it to REDACTED."

It is troubling enough that the Clinton campaign funded Mr. Steele's work, but that these Clinton associates were contemporaneously feeding Mr. Steele allegations raises additional concerns about his credibility." (Lifted from The Federalist)

What are we to make of this? Was Steele shaping the dossier's narrative to the specifications of his employers? Was he being coached by members of the Hillary team? How did that impact the contents of the dossier and the subsequent Russia investigation?

These are just a few of the questions Steele will undoubtedly be asked if he ever faces prosecution for lying to the FBI. But, so far, we know very little about man except that he was a former M16 agent who was paid $160,000 for composing the dubious set of reports that make up the dossier. We don't even know if Steele's alleged contacts or intermediaries in Russia actually exist or not.

Some analysts think the whole thing is a fabrication based on the fact that he hasn't worked the Russia-scene since the FSB (The Russian state-security organization that replaced the KGB) was completely overhauled. Besides, it would be extremely dangerous for a Russian to provide an M16 agent with sensitive intelligence. And what would the contact get in return? According to most accounts, Steele's sources weren't even paid, so there was little incentive for them to put themselves at risk? All of this casts more doubt on the contents of the dossier.

What is known about Steele is that he has a very active imagination and knows how to command a six-figure payoff for his unique services. We also know that the FBI continued to use him long after they knew he couldn't be trusted which suggests that he served some other purpose, like providing the agency with plausible deniability, a 'get out of jail free' card if they ever got caught surveilling US citizens without probable cause.

But that brings us to the strange case of Carter Page, a bit-player whose role in the Trump campaign was trivial at best. Page was what most people would call a "small fish", an insignificant foreign policy advisor who had minimal impact on the campaign. Congressional investigators, like Nunes, must be wondering why the FBI and DOJ devoted so much attention to someone like Page instead of going after the "big fish" like Bannon, Flynn, Kushner, Ivanka and Trump Jr., all of whom might have been able to provide damaging information on the real target, Donald Trump. Wasn't that the idea? So why waste time on Page? It doesn't make any sense, unless, of course, the others were already being surveilled by other agencies? Is that it, did the NSA and the CIA have a hand in the surveillance too?

It's a moot point, isn't it? Because now that there's evidence that senior-level officials at the DOJ and the FBI were involved in improperly obtaining warrants to spy on members of the opposite party, the investigation is going to go wherever it goes. Whatever restrictions existed before, will now be lifted. For example, this popped up in Saturday's The Hill:

"House Intelligence Committee lawmakers are in the dark about an investigation into wrongdoing at the State Department announced by Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) on Friday. Nunes told Fox News on Friday that, "we are in the middle of what I call phase two of our investigation. That investigation is ongoing and we continue work toward finding answers and asking the right questions to try to get to the bottom of what exactly the State Department was up to in terms of this Russia investigation."

Since then, GOP lawmakers have been quietly buzzing about allegations that an Obama-era State Department official passed along information from allies of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that may have been used by the FBI to launch an investigation into whether the Trump campaign had improper contacts with Russia.

"I'm pretty troubled by what I read in the documents with respect to the role the State Department played in the fall of 2016, including information that was used in a court proceeding. I am troubled by it," Gowdy told Fox News on Tuesday." ("Lawmakers in dark about 'phase two' of Nunes investigation", The Hill)

So the State Department is next in line followed by the NSA and, finally, the Russia-gate point of origin, John Brennan's CIA. Here's more background on that from Stephen Cohen's illuminating article at The Nation:

" .when, and by whom, was this Intel operation against Trump started?

In testimony to the House Intelligence Committee in May 2017, John Brennan, formerly Obama's head of the CIA, strongly suggested that he and his agency were the first, as The Washington Post put it at the time, "in triggering an FBI probe." Certainly both the Post and The New York Times interpreted his remarks in this way. Equally certain, Brennan played a central role in promoting the Russiagate narrative thereafter, briefing members of Congress privately and giving President Obama himself a top-secret envelope in early August 2016 that almost certainly contained Steele's dossier. Early on, Brennan presumably would have shared his "suspicions" and initiatives with James Clapper, director of national intelligence. FBI Director Comey may have joined them actively somewhat later .

When did Brennan begin his "investigation" of Trump? His House testimony leaves this somewhat unclear, but, according to a subsequent Guardian article, by late 2015 or early 2016 he was receiving, or soliciting, reports from foreign intelligence agencies regarding "suspicious 'interactions' between figures connected to Trump and known or suspected Russian agents."

In short, if these reports and Brennan's own testimony are to be believed, he, not the FBI, was the instigator and godfather of Russiagate." ("Russiagate or Intelgate?", Stephen Cohen, The Nation)

Regular readers of this column know that we have always believed that the Russiagate psyops originated with Brennan. Just as the CIA launched its disinformation campaigns against Saddam Hussein and Muammar Gadhafi, so too, Russia has emerged as Washington's foremost rival requiring a massive propaganda campaign to persuade the public that America faces a serious external threat. In any event, the demonizing of Russia had already begun by the time Hillary and Co. decided to hop on the bandwagon by blaming Moscow for hacking John Podesta's emails. The allegations were never persuasive, but they did provide Brennan with some cover for the massive Information Operation (IO) that began with him.

According to 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."

It all started with Brennan. After Putin blocked Brennan's operations in both Ukraine and Syria, Brennan had every reason to retaliate and to use the tools at his disposal to demonize Putin and try to isolate Russia. The "election meddling" charges (promoted by the Hillary people) fit perfectly with Brennan's overall strategy to manipulate perceptions and prepare the country for an eventual confrontation. It provided him the opportunity to kill two birds with one stone, to deliver a withering blow to Putin and Trump at the very same time. The temptation must have been irresistible.

But now the plan has backfired and the investigations are gaining pace. Trump's allies in the House smell the blood in the water and they want answers. Did the CIA surveil members of the Trump campaign on the basis of information they gathered in the dossier? Who saw the information? Was the information passed along to members of the press and other government agencies? Was the White House involved? What role did Obama play? What about the Intelligence Community Assessment? Was it based on the contents of the Steele report? Will the "hand-picked" analysts who worked on the report vouch for its conclusions in or were they coached about what to write? How did Brennan persuade the reluctant Comey into opening a counterintelligence investigation on members in the Trump campaign when he knew it would be perceived as a partisan attempt to sabotage the elections by giving Hillary an edge?

Soon the investigative crosshairs will settle on Brennan. He'd better have the right answers.


El Dato , February 13, 2018 at 9:31 pm GMT

Deepstate ain't gonna go quietly.

Watch out for distractions in the national or international sphere.

(Btw, Russia warns via RT of an upcoming false flag attack using chlorine in Syria. Can't get an even break.)

Anon Disclaimer , February 13, 2018 at 10:02 pm GMT
That the whole media can be in service of a such a fraud and beam their relentless lies across millions of TV screens even in a democracy like America goes to tell you that the Power ultimately decides what is 'fiction' and 'non-fiction'.

Why else would most of Big Media be spreading all these lies about Russia Hacking or 'Russiagate' when the only real 'gate' is Deepstategate and Jewishhategate. The anti-Trump hysteria is nothing but an act of arson set by Jewish globalists who hate him.

The Alarmist , February 14, 2018 at 12:32 am GMT
Brennan, Clapper, Clinton, Blumenthal, Abedin, Mills, Podesta, Strzok, McCabe whoever might have been mastermind or mere footsoldier in the drama, one cannot escape the fact that the Capo di tutti capi is Barak Hussein Obama, even if only on the "Buck stops here" principle.
nsa , February 14, 2018 at 5:12 am GMT
Planting stories in the kept lugenpresse then citing the resulting articles as evidence is a common technique of the national security state. Anyone remember DickiePoo Cheney (the man with no heart) planting bogus weapons-of-mass-destruction stories with "reporter" Judith (the jooie) Miller whose stuff was dutifully published in the rapidly anti arab Jew York Times. DickiePoo then cited the stories as evidence that Iraq needed to be invaded and destroyed. This kind of propaganda is quite effective and very long lasting to this day something like 60% of the american public still believe Saddam had a hand in the 911 false flag operation and probably future history books will agree.
JNDillard , February 14, 2018 at 5:32 am GMT
Investigative reporting at its best. Thank you, Mike Whitney. Every member of Congress should read this.
Dan Hayes , February 14, 2018 at 5:39 am GMT
Last September Brennan began a two-year stint as a distinguished fellow for global security at Fordham Law School. Brennan is a 1977 college graduate of this Jesuit institution which undoubtedly laid the groundwork for a career of duplicity and malfeasance .

His appointment is in the grand tradition of Jesuitical sucking up to the powers-that-be.

An especially egregious example of this would be the current Jesuit "Bishop of Rome" (his preferred parlance) playing footsie with communist China. And in the process throwing faithful Chinese under the proverbial bus – just being chalked up as collateral damage!

The beat goes on.

Toby Keith , February 14, 2018 at 6:07 am GMT
@The Alarmist

Every President after Kennedy has been a kosher puppet. Obama masterminded nothing, and it's a very Hasbara thing to suggest he did.

[Feb 11, 2018] Republican investigations put Blumenthal in spotlight

Notable quotes:
"... Steele also gave the dossier to Winer, who flagged to his superiors at the State Department, according to the source. Kerry was eventually briefed on its existence, and that it wasn't known how much was true. ..."
Feb 11, 2018 | www.cnn.com

How Shearer's notes got to Steele

Shearer, an independent journalist, decided to investigate potential Trump-Russia connections after seeing stories about the hacking of the Democratic National Committee, the source said.

Shearer's so-called dossier is actually a set of notes based on conversations with reporters and other sources, according to the person who spoke to CNN, and he circulated those notes to assorted journalists, as well as to Blumenthal.

Blumenthal then passed the notes to Jonathan Winer, who was a State Department special envoy for Libya under former Secretary of State John Kerry, the source said. Winer had a previous relationship with Steele, and he passed it along to Steele in order to get his assessment.

Carter Page struggles to explain how he could advise both Kremlin and Trump team

Related Article: Carter Page struggles to explain how he could advise both Kremlin and Trump team

Blumenthal, according to the source, did not know that Winer would consult Steele on the Shearer document, and said Winer made that decision on his own.

After Winer gave Steele the notes from Shearer, Steele wrote that he found it interesting and it tended to corroborate some of what he found, but he also noted that it was uncorroborated, the source said.

Shearer's notes, a copy of which were obtained by CNN, make uncorroborated allegations involving Trump and Russia, and they cite unnamed Russian intelligence and Turkish sources.

Steele provided Shearer's notes to the FBI in October 2016.

What are the GOP allegations? Steele was being paid for his research by the opposition research firm Fusion GPS, which was hired by a law firm on behalf of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee. A key allegation in last week's Nunes memo was that Steele's political connections to Democrats were not told to the FISA court, and Republicans are charging that Shearer's involvement could show Steele was receiving information from Clinton associates that went into the dossier he gave to the FBI. The criminal referral from Grassley and Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham -- which was unclassified with some redactions this week -- states that Shearer's notes went to Steele through an official at the State Department and another person who was a "friend of the Clinton's." "It is troubling enough that the Clinton Campaign funded Mr. Steele's work, but that these Clinton associates were contemporaneously feeding Mr. Steele's allegations raises additional concerns about his credibility," the senators wrote in the criminal referral, which does not accuse Steele of wrongdoing but urges the Justice Department to investigate the matter. Winer worked with Steele from 2014 through 2016, according to another source familiar with their interactions. Steele provided Winer with reports related to the conflict in Ukraine and Russia as a courtesy, which was not unusual and considered one source among many used for assessing the situation on the ground in Ukraine, the source said.

Former CIA Director Brennan says Nunes 'abused his office' Steele also gave the dossier to Winer, who flagged to his superiors at the State Department, according to the source. Kerry was eventually briefed on its existence, and that it wasn't known how much was true.

Senior State Department officials showed the dossier to Kerry once it was clear the document was in wide circulation around Washington, according to the source. Kerry was not briefed on the Shearer document, the source said. Lee Wolosky, an attorney for Winer, said in a statement that Winer was "concerned in 2016 about information that a candidate for the presidency may have been compromised by a hostile foreign power." "Any actions he took were grounded in those concerns," Wolosky said.

"Today's attacks are nothing more than a further attempt to undermine the independence and credibility of special (counsel Robert) Mueller's ongoing investigation into those and related issues." What are Republicans saying? Republicans haven't come out and accused Blumenthal of any wrongdoing, but they've hinted in public appearances that raw intelligence may have been distributed for partisan purposes. Rep. Trey Gowdy, who chairs the House Oversight Committee and is a senior Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, discussed Nunes' State Department investigation a Fox News interview Tuesday, saying he was "troubled" by the role the State Department played. Gowdy read the classified FISA documents that the Justice Department gave congressional committees access to on the condition that only one member of the majority and minority would view them. "When you hear who the source, or one of the sources of that information is, you're going to think, 'Oh, my gosh, I've heard that name somewhere before. Where could he possibly have been?'" the South Carolina Republican said.

Gowdy: Memo has no impact on Russia probe "A domestic source. I'm trying to think of Secretary Clinton defined him. I think she said he was an old friend who emailed her from time to time," Gowdy continued. "Sidney Blumenthal?" Fox News' Martha MacCallum asked. "That would be really warm," Gowdy concluded. Nunes made headlines over the weekend when he predicted more memos would be coming from his committee, but he says that the investigation into the State Department has already been in the works. "We have an active investigation into the State Department. That has been ongoing for a while now," Nunes told Fox News' Sean Hannity.

Nunes has repeatedly declined to discuss his investigations with CNN, saying he doesn't discuss committee business "in the halls." Graham declined to discuss Blumenthal's role in the committee's investigation into Steele, but said the State Department is one element of it. "There's some connections outside the Department of Justice and the dossier that we're looking at. One of them goes to the State Department," Graham told CNN. "It's clear to me he was using the dossier for political purposes and that should have been more alarming than it was."

Who are the players?

Blumenthal is no stranger to congressional investigations, playing a role in the House Benghazi Select Committee investigation that was led by Gowdy. Blumenthal testified behind closed doors as part of the Benghazi investigation, and he provided the committee with emails he exchanged with Clinton , who was secretary of state when the 2012 Benghazi attack occurred. Blumenthal sent Clinton dozens of emails while she was secretary of state on various foreign policy topics, some of which were unsolicited and others that were requested by Clinton.

A former journalist, Blumenthal has known the Clintons for more than 30 years, and he worked in the Clinton White House as senior adviser from 1997 to 2001. He's been by the family's side during difficult moments, including President Bill Clinton's impeachment trial.

[Feb 08, 2018] The Nunes Memo and the Death of American Journalism The American Conservative

Notable quotes:
"... One key question, she suggests, was whether the FBI had cause to initiate a full-blown counterintelligence probe into an active presidential campaign. "That's a breathtakingly consequential and unprecedented action," writes Strassel, "and surely could not be justified without much more than an overheard drunken conversation or an unsourced dossier. What hard evidence did the FBI have?" ..."
"... Strassel also notes that the government has few tools more powerful or frightening than the ability to spy on American citizens. Indeed, we are in delicate territory here. "If the FBI obtained permission from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to monitor Trump aide Carter Page based on information from the Christopher Steele dossier," she says, "that in itself is a monumental scandal." In other words, the small details don't really matter. If the FBI knew that the allegations of Steele's now-famous dossier remained unverified and used them anyway, that would constitute an abuse of power and an effort to manipulate the FISA court. ..."
"... Later that day, the Nunes memo was released, and, sure enough, it revealed that all of Strassel's questions were answered in the affirmative. That's what prompted the Journal , in a Saturday editorial, to suggest that the FBI had been used as "a tool of anti-Trump political actors" in an effort to influence the 2016 presidential election. ..."
"... by all accounts Page ended up cooperating with the FBI during that 2013 investigation and was never prosecuted. Third, why is a supposedly objective journalist carrying water for the opposition in trying to discredit the Nunes memo before people have a chance to digest it? Isn't that what editorialists and commentators do? ..."
"... Savage dismisses Nunes' suggestion that Steele admitted in British court filings that he had met with Yahoo News at the direction of Fusion GPS and that the Perkins Coie law firm knew this as early as 2016. Those court filings, writes Savage, were dated after the initial surveillance application and after at least one renewal request. ..."
"... As Strassel points out, surely the FBI took note when those news articles began appearing, and surely officials would see that the substance of the articles matched the substance of the Steele dossier, which they had studied in detail. Thus do we see another gotcha effort on the part of Savage that fizzles upon inspection. ..."
"... Savage's annotations represent a kind of reflection of modern journalism, a far cry from the kind that prevailed in America before the decay that emerged with cable news, web discourse, and social media. In those more distant times, journalists didn't align themselves with one side of a dispute or the other, ostentatiously answering serious allegations with counter-speculation by way of spreading confusion and thus undermining the allegations. Rather they rushed out to find the facts without regard to the political narratives of competing factions. They sought to remain above the fray. Does that sound quaint? ..."
"... "Much of the outrage, I think, is being fueled by people who want a new Cold War with Russia. Russiagate, true or false, helps keep the all important fear and loathing of Russia on the front page." ..."
Feb 08, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Charlie Savage is a clever guy. The New York Times reporter managed to get a full-fledged editorial into the news section of his paper when the controversial Nunes memo was released on Friday. He did it through a journalistic device that is likely to be more widely used in the future as standards of objectivity and fairness continue to wither: an "annotated" version of the original document.

The memo, three and a half pages long and compiled by House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes, documents what the Wall Street Journal calls "disturbing facts about how the FBI and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court appear to have been used to influence the 2016 election and its aftermath." The Journal adds, "You don't have to be a civil libertarian to be shocked by the details."

Savage clearly isn't shocked. But he shouldn't be, at least not outwardly -- not in his reporting on the document. His job is to be dispassionate. On the other hand, neither should he reveal his own stark bias through deft selections on what precisely he wishes to annotate and how he wishes to do so.

Charlie Savage is not alone. The country's liberal establishment has joined ranks in dismissing the memo. It has attacked its veracity, portraying it as a conscious effort to mislead the American people on FBI and Justice Department efforts to get a surveillance order on a U.S. citizen connected to Donald Trump's presidential campaign. This intense spin was on full display even before the memo was released, and then reached full flower afterward.

This was not surprising. The hysteria reflects a recent development in American politics whereby disturbing facts and suspicions, if they contradict the embraced narrative, are simply ignored or dismissed as combatants hammer away from their usual scripts. This isn't confined to liberals; you can see it at a high pitch every night on Sean Hannity's Fox News program.

But the liberal establishment's response to the Nunes memo has been something to behold, and Charlie Savage's annotated version represents a distilled specimen of this unfortunate decline in American political discourse -- and the decline also in the journalistic values of old. For purposes of clarification, let's look at the Savage annotations in juxtaposition with the Wall Street Journal 's take, which has the merit of being on the editorial page.

We begin with Kimberley A. Strassel's Journal column on Friday, which counseled readers on how to read the memo once it appeared. One key question, she suggests, was whether the FBI had cause to initiate a full-blown counterintelligence probe into an active presidential campaign. "That's a breathtakingly consequential and unprecedented action," writes Strassel, "and surely could not be justified without much more than an overheard drunken conversation or an unsourced dossier. What hard evidence did the FBI have?"

Strassel also notes that the government has few tools more powerful or frightening than the ability to spy on American citizens. Indeed, we are in delicate territory here. "If the FBI obtained permission from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to monitor Trump aide Carter Page based on information from the Christopher Steele dossier," she says, "that in itself is a monumental scandal." In other words, the small details don't really matter. If the FBI knew that the allegations of Steele's now-famous dossier remained unverified and used them anyway, that would constitute an abuse of power and an effort to manipulate the FISA court.

Another fundamental question, in Strassel's view, was whether the FBI used news stories unleashed through Steele leaks to corroborate the allegations of the dossier. She writes: "If the FBI used the conspiracy stories Mr. Steele was spinning as actual justification -- evidence -- to the court, that's out of bounds."

Finally, she urges readers to pay attention to whether the FBI withheld from the court that Steele was working ultimately for the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee, with the gumshoe Fusion GPS firm and the Perkins Coie law firm as cutouts and conduits of cash to Steele.

Later that day, the Nunes memo was released, and, sure enough, it revealed that all of Strassel's questions were answered in the affirmative. That's what prompted the Journal , in a Saturday editorial, to suggest that the FBI had been used as "a tool of anti-Trump political actors" in an effort to influence the 2016 presidential election.

This is serious stuff, even without definitive answers on all matters involved. It goes without saying that when the government puts a U.S. citizen under surveillance, the legal punctilio, as crafted by Congress, should be observed. The evidence suggests that in this instance the prescribed safeguards may have been ignored. This is not something that can be dismissed as phony; it must be considered grounds for an exhaustive investigation.

You wouldn't get any sense of the seriousness of this, however, by reading Charlie Savage's annotations. Some are simply frivolous, others seriously misleading. None of them reflect any appreciation for the gravity of the matter at hand, particularly with regard to the issue of civil liberties.

Annotating a passage in which the Nunes memo identifies the signatories of the surveillance requests (the original one and subsequent renewals), Savage notes out of the blue that if President Trump were to use the wiretapping controversy to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, "the president could install someone who might be more willing to constrain or end the investigation" of independent counsel Robert Mueller, who is looking into possible Trump campaign collusion with the Russians.

This is a diversionary aside. If Trump did that, the political backlash would be overwhelming. But in any event, this merely distracts attention from the central questions identified by Strassel and her editorial page. Whatever the merits of the Nunes memo, or lack of them, Trump's use of it is irrelevant to any serious assessment.

Responding to the Nunes suggestion that "material and relevant information was omitted" in the surveillance order requests of the FBI and DOJ, Savage notes that the "memo's critics" accuse Nunes himself of withholding important information. That includes that other evidence not connected to Steele, "much of which remains classified," was also part of the surveillance requests. Savage mentions as an example the fact that Carter Page, the subject of the surveillance order, had attracted the FBI's interest back in 2013, when it appeared two Russian agents were trying to recruit him.

Three points here: First, if Nunes withheld relevant and material information about other evidence used to secure the wiretap orders, then his memo will end up being seriously discredited. But Savage doesn't seem to have any such information at hand. When he does he should report it; until then it is a smokescreen. Second, by all accounts Page ended up cooperating with the FBI during that 2013 investigation and was never prosecuted. Third, why is a supposedly objective journalist carrying water for the opposition in trying to discredit the Nunes memo before people have a chance to digest it? Isn't that what editorialists and commentators do?

Next, Savage annotates this quote from Nunes: "Neither the initial application in October 2016 nor any of the renewals discloses the role of the DNC and the Clinton campaign or any party/campaign in funding Steele's efforts, though the FBI knew this."

Savage trots out a "FISA expert" named David Kris, who calls this the memo's "money quote." It is, says Kris, "potentially problematic and worthy of further review." But he adds that, if the opposition funding had been disclosed in a general way -- with a notation, say, that it had been funded "by people motivated to undermine Trump's campaign" -- then the FISA application "would be fine." But neither Kris nor Savage has any idea if this was the case. So what is Savage's purpose in attempting to fuzz up this Nunes allegation? There's only one answer: to discredit it, without evidence.

Nunes makes much of the FISA application seeking to corroborate the Steele dossier with a Yahoo News article containing many of the same allegations. As the memo states: "This article does not corroborate the Steele dossier because it is derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo news." Savage promptly quotes Nunes' chief adversary on his committee, ranking member Adam Schiff of California, as calling this "a serious mischaracterization." The article, says Schiff, was not used to corroborate the dossier. Savage quotes Kris as saying it would be "much more likely" for officials to cite news articles to demonstrate a certain urgency due to increasing public exposure.

But there is no evidence that Kris knows anything about this particular case, and some journalists -- including Strassel, who has been covering this story meticulously for months -- have written that officials do indeed sometimes use news reporting to corroborate evidence used in seeking surveillance clearance.

But here again we have Savage countering a congressional report with speculation on the part of a man who doesn't know the details and a countercharge from a partisan opponent.

This particular annotation helps crystallize what's going on here. This is a pivotal matter in the controversy. If Schiff is correct that Nunes perpetrated a "serious mischaracterization" on such a matter, then the entire memo will be discredited. If, on the other hand, Nunes is correct, his overall critique of the FBI and Justice will demand further attention. There was a time, not too many years ago, when journalists saw their jobs as going out to get the answers to such questions. That doesn't seem to be how Savage views his responsibilities, at least in this instance.

Savage dismisses Nunes' suggestion that Steele admitted in British court filings that he had met with Yahoo News at the direction of Fusion GPS and that the Perkins Coie law firm knew this as early as 2016. Those court filings, writes Savage, were dated after the initial surveillance application and after at least one renewal request. Thus, he asks, how was this relevant to the matter of those FISA applications? But the question here is not when Steele acknowledged his media leaks but whether they took place and whether the FBI knew he was peddling dirt on Trump to news organizations during the crucial weeks of the campaign. That's not a trivial matter, and it's impossible to believe the Bureau didn't know. As Strassel points out, surely the FBI took note when those news articles began appearing, and surely officials would see that the substance of the articles matched the substance of the Steele dossier, which they had studied in detail. Thus do we see another gotcha effort on the part of Savage that fizzles upon inspection.

Savage's annotations represent a kind of reflection of modern journalism, a far cry from the kind that prevailed in America before the decay that emerged with cable news, web discourse, and social media. In those more distant times, journalists didn't align themselves with one side of a dispute or the other, ostentatiously answering serious allegations with counter-speculation by way of spreading confusion and thus undermining the allegations. Rather they rushed out to find the facts without regard to the political narratives of competing factions. They sought to remain above the fray. Does that sound quaint?

In the wake of the Nunes memo's release, there's still much we don't know about how federal officials went about getting approval for placing a U.S. citizen -- and a presidential campaign -- under surveillance, including what evidence was marshaled for that purpose. Perhaps Nunes' critics are correct in saying his memo raises more questions than it answers. But those questions are serious. Charlie Savage no doubt possesses the journalistic capacity to go find some of the answers. That would be a pursuit of elevated value.

Robert W. Merry, longtime Washington, D.C., journalist and publishing executive, is editor of The American Conservative . His latest book, President McKinley: Architect of the American Century , was released in September.

VikingLS February 6, 2018 at 5:28 pm

"Much of the outrage, I think, is being fueled by people who want a new Cold War with Russia. Russiagate, true or false, helps keep the all important fear and loathing of Russia on the front page."

There's definitely that, but I also think there is a sincere belief amongst some anti-Trumpers that the Mueller investigation is going finally find something that will get rid of Trump.

Given how leaky this whole affair is, I think that's increasingly unlikely, but they don't.

[Feb 07, 2018] FBI lovers texts show Obama wanted info on Clinton probe

A comment to the article "
"
Feb 07, 2018 | dailymail.co.uk

An FBI lawyer wrote in a text to her lover in late 2016 that then-president Barack Obama wanted updates on the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

Two months before the presidential election, Lisa Page wrote to fellow FBI official Peter Strzok that she was working on a memo for then-FBI director James Comey because Obama 'wants to know everything we're doing.'

Obama had said five months earlier during a Fox News Channel interview that he could 'guarantee' he wouldn't interfere with that investigation.

'I do not talk to the attorney general about pending investigations. I do not talk to FBI directors about pending investigations. We have a strict line,' he said on April 10, 2016.

'I guarantee it. I guarantee that there is no political influence in any investigation conducted by the Justice Department or the FBI, not just in this case but in any case. Full stop. Period,' he said.' --> --> -->

The September 2, 2016 text message was among more 50,000 texts the pair sent during a two-year extramarital affair.

Fox News was first to report on the latest batch, which is to be released by Republicans on the Senate Homeland Security Committee.

The committee members will soon publish a report titled 'The Clinton Email Scandal and the FBI's Investigation of it.'

President Donald Trump tweeted on Wednesday: 'NEW FBI TEXTS ARE BOMBSHELLS!'

Comey testified to Congress in June 2017: 'As FBI director I interacted with President Obama. I spoke only twice in three years, and didn't document it.'

He didn't address possible memos or other written reports he may have sent to the Obama White House.

But Comey did document his 2017 meetings with President Donald Trump, he said, because he feared Trump would interfere with the Russia probe.

Strzok was the lead investigator on the probe examining Clinton's illicit use of a private email server to handle her official State Department messages while she was America's top diplomat.

He was later a member of special counsel Robert Mueller's team investigating alleged links betwen Donald Trump's presidential campaign and Russia.

Comey was to give Obama an update on the Clinton email investigation before the 2016 election, according to Page; he testified before Congress in 2017 that he only spoke to Obama twice as FBI director – but didn't mention whether he had sent him written reports

Comey announced in July 2016 that he had cleared Clinton of criminal wrongdoing in the email probe, saying that 'we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information.'

On October 28, 2016, Comey said in a letter to Congress that the FBI was reviewing new emails related to Clinton's tenure as secretary of State.

That revelation threw the presidential election into chaos.

On November 6, 2016, Comey told lawmakers that a review of those newly discovered emails had not altered the agency's view that Clinton should not face criminal charges.

The text messages between Page and Strzok that emerged earlier showed their hatred for Donald Trump.

In August 2016 Strzok wrote to her that he wanted to believe '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 you die before you're 40.' --> --> -->

It's unclear what that 'insurance policy' was, but the Justice Department was at the time debating an approach to a federal court for a surveillance warrant against Trump adviser Carter Page.

Strzok was elevated to overseeing the Trump Russia probe a month earlier.

In a text sent on October 20, 2016, Strzok called the Republican presidential nominee a 'f***ing idiot.'

On Election Day, Page wrote to him: 'OMG THIS IS F***ING TERRIFYING.'

Strzok replied, 'Omg, I am so depressed.'

Five days later, Page texted him again: 'I bought all the president's men. Figure I need to brush up on watergate.'

[Feb 07, 2018] Their future, their legacy, their WORLD depends on getting Trump out of there. Nothing else matters

Feb 07, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Noktirnal -> Thought Processor Feb 7, 2018 11:57 AM Permalink

These are what they want. Chaos is one way to get there. Unity is another.

onewayticket2 -> holdbuysell Feb 7, 2018 9:11 AM Permalink

MIA. They want NOTHING to do with these crimes. Their future, their legacy, their WORLD depends on getting Trump out of there. Nothing else matters.

Sharyl Attkison on Fox: This goes WELL beyond the 2016 FISA applications....it's been going on for much longer.

gatorengineer -> onewayticket2 Feb 7, 2018 9:23 AM Permalink

This is all for the entertainment of the masses..... If you believe otherwise you are foolish. Just because we are just seeing these texts, doesnt mean that Grandpa sessions hasnt had them for months... And...... CRICKETS....

Donald J. Trump -> gatorengineer Feb 7, 2018 9:31 AM Permalink

They tried to squash the FISA memo but the people relentlessly got it released. The people will not settle for crickets on this.

herbivore -> Butifldrm Feb 7, 2018 9:31 AM Permalink

The absence of prosecutions will prove they were correct in their assessment that they were/are above the law. No one is more above the law than Barack Obama and it does not matter how complicit he was in all of this. Half the country worships him. With HRC, maybe 20% of the population worships her but that's enough to give her immunity from prosecution too, not to mention her assassins who will eliminate anyone who might pose a threat to her freedom. We are not a country of laws, we are a country of fame and fortune. The more fame and fortune you acquire, the more above the law you become.

[Feb 05, 2018] CONFIRMED Mueller admits no collusion at Trump Tower meeting

Feb 05, 2018 | theduran.com

As is now becoming the way as the Russiagate scandal unravels, confirmation of the collapse of one of its central pillars – the claim of proof of collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign which some have claimed to see in the meeting in Trump Tower in June 2016 between the Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya and Donald Trump Junior – has slipped out in the most covert way possible.

Nonetheless the confirmation is there and originates in what all the indications suggest is a deliberate leak either from Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team or from the White House's legal team.

The confirmation is provided in an NBC News article which reads as follows

Two sources familiar with the questions Mueller's team have been asking about the meeting say the investigators are most interested in why the president crafted a misleading statement about the meeting much later, in July 2017, after a New York Times report about it. The sources say Mueller's office is trying to confirm every detail it can about the meeting.

Mueller's team is less interested in the meeting as a direct example of collusion, the sources said, although Trump Jr. accepted the meeting after being told he would receive incriminating information about Hillary Clinton as part of the Russian government effort to help his father.

No evidence has emerged publicly to contradict Veselnitskaya's account that she wanted to press a case about U.S. Magnitsky Act sanctions, and that she did not possess significant derogatory information about Clinton, despite the email from a music promoter to Trump Jr. promising incriminating details about the Democrat.

Moreover, no evidence has emerged publicly that connects the Russians in the meeting with the Russian intelligence effort to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.

The issue of Donald Trump's supposedly misleading statement about the meeting is a red herring since it can have no possible connection to the collusion allegations which Mueller's inquiry is supposed to be investigating.

Even assuming that Trump's statement was misleading – which some might question – it would hardly be the first case of a US President making a misleading statement, and it is impossible to see how it can possibly give rise to a law enforcement issue for Mueller to investigate.

Of much more importance is the confirmation that Mueller's team now acknowledge that there is no evidence to connect Veselnitskaya to Russian intelligence and that her and Donald Trump Junior's accounts of their meeting must be accepted as true since there is no evidence to contradict them.

In truth this was obvious from the start as I pointed out in an article I wrote on 12th July 2017, written immediately after details of the meeting came to light

The meeting with Veselnitskaya duly took place on 9th June 2016. It turned out that she had no information about Hillary Clinton to offer and was not a "Russian government attorney". Instead she wanted to discuss the Magnitsky Act, upon which a baffled Donald Trump Junior politely showed her the door.

That is the unanimous account of all the participants of the meeting including Donald Trump Junior and Veselnitskaya herself. All agree that the meeting lasted no more than 20 minutes.

There is no evidence that contradicts their account and the absence of any follow-up to the meeting essentially corroborates their account.

It seems that Donald Trump Junior and Veselnitskaya have never met since and have had no further contact with each other.

There is no evidence here of any crime or wrongdoing being committed or – contrary to what many are saying – of any intention to commit one.

Russiagate would not however be Russiagate if this important news that Mueller and his team have come to the same conclusion was not smuggled out in an NBC News article whose title gives the impression that it is about the totally meaningless fact that Veselnitskaya after leaving the meeting with Donald Trump Junior had a brief encounter in the lift of Trump Tower with a blonde woman who might – or might not – have been Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka.

To such ridiculous lengths to conceal embarrassing truths about Russiagate is the media in the US increasingly reduced to.

Though the Veselnitskaya-Trump Junior meeting is now being finally acknowledged to be the red herring it always was, there is one further point about it to make.

In my 12th July 2017 article I speculated that the meeting might have been a sting intended to corroborate the collusion allegations between the Trump campaign and Russia which were to achieve written form in the first 20th June 2016 entry of the Trump Dossier, written a few weeks after the Veselnitskaya-Trump Junior took place.

What led others subsequently to speculate along the same lines was that there appeared to be a connection between Veselnitskaya and Fusion GPS, the political consultancy firm which commissioned the Trump Dossier on behalf of the DNC and the Hillary Clinton campaign.

Glenn Simpson's testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee should put all this speculation to rest.

It turns out that Veselnitskaya was not working for Fusion GPS but rather Fusion GPS was working for her, in connection with her work on the Magnitsky case.

That in itself makes it inherently unlikely that she was acting as a catspaw for Fusion GPS when she met Donald Trump Junior.

More to the point, Glenn Simpson's comments about Veselnitskaya are anything but complimentary. He basically describes her – rather convincingly – as a self-important busybody and a minor league player, and expresses incredulity at the suggestion that she was a Russian intelligence agent who was working for the Kremlin.

Simpson's characterisation of Veselnitskaya in testimony in which he strongly promotes the Russiagate collusion allegations and vouches for the truth of the Trump Dossier makes it all but inconceivable Veselnitskaya was involved in a sting to set Trump Junior up.

Despite taking place at a time when the Trump-Russia collusion allegations were about to take off, Veselnitskaya's meeting with Trump Junior must instead be seen as one of those annoying coincidences which lawyers, journalists, policemen and the public automatically distrust, but which happen in real life.

[Feb 04, 2018] How Trump was set up by Rosenstein

Feb 04, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

TGF Texas -> Dratpmurt Feb 3, 2018 11:20 AM Permalink

Yeah, except for those pesky facts like, Rosenstein wrote the letter requesting Commey's firing, which was approved by Sessions, and sent to Trump...

Dam, facts suck, don't they!

WillyGroper -> DuneCreature Feb 3, 2018 9:33 PM Permalink

Lisa Barsoomian

Mrs. Lisa Barsoomian is an attorney; but most importantly is that she is the wife of Rod Rosenstein, Deputy Attorney General for the United States Department of Justice. Prior to that, he served as the United States Attorney for the District of Maryland. Surely you don't want to read about that, therefore check out the 5 facts we found about Mrs. Barsoomian Rosenstein

50-year-old Mrs. Barsoomian was born on January 15, 1968. She is the daughter of Armenian immigrants. Together they have two beautiful daughters; Julie, 18, and Allison, 15.

She graduated from Georgetown Law. Moreover, according to reports, she represented Hillary Clinton, between 1991 to 2017; she also represented Bill Clinton, James Comey, Barack Obama, Kathleen Sebellius and Robert Muller. Furthermore, Lisa Barsoomian Rosenstein works for R. Craig Lawrence.

R. Craig Lawrence helped seal Obama's college records to prevent inquiry into his application for full scholarship as a foreign exchange student.

NuYawkFrankie Feb 3, 2018 10:47 AM Permalink

Yeah - who is ULTIMATELY responsible ???

All signs point to, and roads lead to that NeoCon-infested Nest Of Vipers know as the USSA State Dept...

a cabal of ISISrael Firsters that will stop at no subterfuge , no slander, no dissimulation, no criminal undertaking to stoke THEIR Wars For A Greater ISISrael ... even if it means removing a sitting President to get the job done as fast as Hillary most assuredly promised her "sponsors"... and even if it means igniting World War 3 blaming Russia.

THE ENEMY IS WITHIN THE GATES!

[Feb 01, 2018] Michael Wolff Kicked Off Morning Joe By Mika Brzezinski Mid-Interview

Notable quotes:
"... On Thurdsay morning, in a rare example of the antipathy many journalists feels toward "Fire and Fire" author Michael Wolff, MSNBC co-host Mika Brzezinski abruptly cut off her interview with Wolff on Morning Joe, after the author of the scandalous, if largely fictional, "tell all" book of the Trump presidency, said he never suggested that U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley had an affair with President Donald Trump. ..."
"... To that Brzezinski replied, " You might be having a fun time playing a little game dancing around this, but you're slurring a woman. It's disgraceful." ..."
"... Melania feelings dont seem to worry her ..."
"... "Hey...you cannot lie on our show...we're the only ones allowed to do that".. ..."
Feb 01, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

The anti-Trump "resistance" appears to be turning on itself.

On Thurdsay morning, in a rare example of the antipathy many journalists feels toward "Fire and Fire" author Michael Wolff, MSNBC co-host Mika Brzezinski abruptly cut off her interview with Wolff on Morning Joe, after the author of the scandalous, if largely fictional, "tell all" book of the Trump presidency, said he never suggested that U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley had an affair with President Donald Trump.

To that Brzezinski replied, " You might be having a fun time playing a little game dancing around this, but you're slurring a woman. It's disgraceful."

"We're done" the Morning Joe then cut off the interview after asking, with a straight face, " are you kidding? you're on the set of Morning Joe, we don't BS here."

The exchange comes after Wolff recently appeared on Real Time With Bill Maher, where he said he was "absolutely sure" the president was having an affair with someone, and alluded to who that person was in one paragraph of his White House tell-all -- that person being Haley, according to the Daily Beast . In the following days, Haley - a former South Carolina governor - has vehemently denied any relationship with Trump.

Minutes after Wolff was kicked off, he tweeted: " My bad, the President is right about Mika "...


Cognitive Dissonance Feb 1, 2018 10:18 AM Permalink

Righteous indignation in all its glory. First you destroy the others, then you destroy your own, then you destroy yourself. It is the inevitable conclusion to the self reinforcing insanity of righteous indignation.

Badsamm -> Cognitive Dissonance Feb 1, 2018 10:21 AM Permalink

Melania feelings dont seem to worry her

eclectic syncretist -> DownWithYogaPants Feb 1, 2018 11:17 AM Permalink

"We don't BS here" ROFLMFAO!

Jerry Springer is Amateur hour compared to these assclowns.

j0nx -> Nameshavebeenc Feb 1, 2018 10:31 AM Permalink

Mika and Joe never had terrible things to say about Trump until he didn't let them into his little party and tweeted about her bloody post-surgery face. It's such a personal vendetta with them at this point that it isn't even legitimate news TV anymore. Has nothing to do with him or his policies. They are just pissed that he dissed them. They have lost all relevance. Sad.

CheapBastard -> j0nx Feb 1, 2018 10:40 AM Permalink

One slime bag bashing another slime bag. Glorious! Winning!

northern vigor -> Nameshavebeenc Feb 1, 2018 10:39 AM Permalink

"Hey...you cannot lie on our show...we're the only ones allowed to do that"..

newmacroman -> Nameshavebeenc Feb 1, 2018 10:43 AM Permalink

ZBigly embarrassing

[Jan 31, 2018] Ironically, in RussiaGate truth is on Trump's side. Will a domestic political victory for Trump over RussiaGate provide him with the courage to retake control over foreign policy? Or will CIA do something reprehensible in order to deflect the fallout?

Jan 31, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 | Jan 29, 2018 8:11:38 PM | 29

In further thinking about those two op/eds, the authors wasted their time trying to sway Trump as he's disowned being the policy leader on Syria, with Defense, State and CIA vying for leadership despite every policy move they've made ending as gross failures seriously degrading the Empire's brand which was already eroding under Obama/Kerry. With the FBI/DNC/HRC related Scandals all reaching their acme in a manner that will exonerate Trump, I don't see him needing to provoke an overseas distraction as he greatly desires to take down those that tried to do him in. Indeed, exposing the massive rot and corruption at the core of the federal government would actually give him a campaign promise victory, one I would applaud. Of the three agencies, the CIA followed by Defense would be most injured by the scandal fallout; and of the two, the CIA would be more willing and able to create an overseas provocation in a desperate attempt to stave off the inevitable.

Wishful thinking--perhaps. Ironically, RussiaGate Truth is on Trump's side. Both RNC and DNC are vapid and corrupt to the max and the grave awaits them both. Will a domestic political victory for Trump over RussiaGate provide him with the courage to retake control over foreign policy? Or will CIA do something more reprehensible than 911 in order to deflect the fallout? Or ?

[Jan 29, 2018] NYT DOJ's Rod Rosenstein Extended Spy Warrant on Former Trump Campaign Adviser Carter Page

Notable quotes:
"... The people who spoke to the Times ..."
"... The memo, however, is expected to detail how the surveillance warrant was initially obtained inappropriately using the Trump dossier -- a political document funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee. ..."
"... It is expected to show that FBI and DOJ officials did not explain to the secret court granting spy warrants that the dossier was politically fueled opposition research. To obtain the warrant, the officials needed to show "probable cause" that Page was acting as an agent of Russia. ..."
"... The Trump dossier claimed he met with two high-level Russian officials on that trip, despite no evidence of it and Page's testimony under oath that he never met with them. Page has sued BuzzFeed for publishing the dossier. ..."
"... Rosenstein, after he was confirmed as the deputy attorney general in late April 2017, approved renewing the surveillance warrant, according to the Times ..."
Jan 29, 2018 | www.breitbart.com

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein approved an application to extend surveillance of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page shortly after taking office last spring, according to the New York Times .

That is one of the revelations in a memo compiled by House Intelligence Committee staffers that is set to be released within weeks, according to "three people familiar with it" who spoke to the Times .

The memo is expected to detail abuses by senior FBI officials in their investigation of the Trump campaign, which began the summer of 2016.

The House Intelligence Committee could vote to release the memo as early as Monday. It would give President Trump five days to object; otherwise, the memo will be released.

Democrats, as well as the Justice Department, have warned that releasing the memo to the public would be "extraordinarily reckless," although the leaks of the memo to the Times makes those claims dubious.

Democrats have also claimed that the memo, which summarizes classified information held by the Justice Department, is misleading and paints a "distorted" picture, and they have prepared their own counter memo they want to release.

The people who spoke to the Times argued that Rosenstein's renewal of a spy warrant on Carter Page, Trump's former campaign foreign policy adviser, "shows that the Justice Department under President Trump saw reason to believe that the associate, Carter Page, was acting as a Russian agent."

The memo, however, is expected to detail how the surveillance warrant was initially obtained inappropriately using the Trump dossier -- a political document funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

It is expected to show that FBI and DOJ officials did not explain to the secret court granting spy warrants that the dossier was politically fueled opposition research. To obtain the warrant, the officials needed to show "probable cause" that Page was acting as an agent of Russia.

Page joined the campaign in March 2016, around the time the team was under pressure to release names of foreign policy advisers.

The former investment banker and Navy officer took a personal trip to Moscow to deliver a speech at a graduation ceremony in July 2016, which fueled nascent allegations that Trump was somehow colluding with Russia. Page left the campaign in September.

The Trump dossier claimed he met with two high-level Russian officials on that trip, despite no evidence of it and Page's testimony under oath that he never met with them. Page has sued BuzzFeed for publishing the dossier.

The FBI had been tracking Page, who was previously based in Moscow, since 2013, but was never charged with any wrongdoing. The FBI reportedly received the surveillance warrant on him in fall of 2016, but Page had left the campaign by then.

Rosenstein, after he was confirmed as the deputy attorney general in late April 2017, approved renewing the surveillance warrant, according to the Times . When Trump fired then-FBI Director James Comey in May, Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller to lead a special counsel.

Rosenstein has been in charge of the Russia investigation since Attorney General Jeff Session recused himself.

[Jan 28, 2018] The democrats are angling with Mueller not for obstruction, but conspiracy to obstruct.

Jan 28, 2018 | theconservativetreehouse.com

The Boss , January 26, 2018 at 8:19 pm

The democrats are angling with Mueller not for obstruction, but conspiracy to obstruct.

This case extract fits nicely with the narrative of the day. (Notice it's from Chicago, and not too old – Aug 2014). This case might have been the inspiration for the WaPo / NYT fake news stories.

https://federalcrimesblog.com/tag/conspiracy-to-obstruct-justice/

[Jan 28, 2018] "You are Obstructing Justice" Trey Gowdy SMASH Rosenstein With Steve King

Notable quotes:
"... Mueller was also involved with 9-11-2001 ..."
"... Every single answer they give is nothing but circle talk. Its impossible for congress to do anything when they never find an end to the circle. These dirty bastards in power are lawyers for a damn good reason. ..."
"... Rosenstien does not know any information about the "Special Matter" Clinton email investigation. He did know enough to write a memo to President to fire Comey? How, without knowledge of basic information regarding the Clinton "Matter" did he conclude Comey should be fired for Comey's handling of the "Matter"? He is a liar. He is obstructing justice and part of setting up Trump. ..."
"... He knows exactly the kind of people he or Mueller is appointing in the Special Counsel Investigation. He is not objective and non-partisan. ..."
"... he reveals this by, instead of being outraged by these events , he treats them as if they were no big deal. Nothing to see here , move along. It is so obvious that Rosenstein is there to protect the guilty. ..."
"... Rosenstein rarely would look at the person who was questioning him, he'd just give them a quick glance now and then. Just my thoughts! I don't trust Rosenstein,, or the whole lot of them. ..."
"... FBI Agents do not take notes of interviews or interrogations. FBI agents do not record interviews or interrogation. When FBI agents finish a interview or interrogation they return to their office and write a report. In the report they write whatever they want to. ..."
"... What humans and Americans see is a biased Mueller team that conducted a false investigation based on false evidence (dossier) that was compromised of any justice or information. Knowing now that the Mueller team is corrupt, the investigation is void. ..."
"... An honest unbiased Deputy AG would be really pissed off that his employees were acting this way. They would want to get to the bottom of this mess and fire the shit out of some people. ..."
"... he's trying his best to cover for these corrupt individuals period. Mueller and his entire team need to be dissolved immediately with prejudice and if crimes are uncovered of abuse of authority, charges need to be filed. ..."
"... He's a weasel. and just another person whose testimony is infuriating to watch bc of the refusal to answer, the focus on semantics, denial of everything, and using roundabout tactics to purposefully avoid actually stating an opinion or fact. ..."
"... These hearings end up being pointless even though the reps make great points and lay out great analysis. ..."
Jan 28, 2018 | www.youtube.com

GameN'Guitar, 1 month ago

Mueller was also involved with 9-11-2001, and also approved the Uranium deal. Nail his ass to the wall with spikes !!!

Honest Fire Capt, 1 month ago

Do these people ever show up to work? Nobody knows anything! I had to generate a report if I changed a smoke alarm battery! Threaten their pension and watch their answers change! Corrupt pedo-politicians!

CHINHUMPER RAPEALOTOFFACE, 1 month ago

These investigations are nothing but a bullshit pony show. If we want change we need to do it ourselves. These slick ass lawyers are waaay too smart to run themselves over with Congress. Every single answer they give is nothing but circle talk. Its impossible for congress to do anything when they never find an end to the circle. These dirty bastards in power are lawyers for a damn good reason.

Sandra White, 1 month ago

Rosenstien does not know any information about the "Special Matter" Clinton email investigation. He did know enough to write a memo to President to fire Comey? How, without knowledge of basic information regarding the Clinton "Matter" did he conclude Comey should be fired for Comey's handling of the "Matter"? He is a liar. He is obstructing justice and part of setting up Trump.

Jeffrey Robert-Dicken, 1 month ago (edited)

his eyes tell the truth ...shady guy who knows more than he is telling and his boss is seriously vacant

Lolly Pedregosa, 1 month ago

Rosenstein should be fired from the DOJ because he is the Director of all these Dramas that is unfolding now. He knows exactly the kind of people he or Mueller is appointing in the Special Counsel Investigation. He is not objective and non-partisan.

stevie Flax, 1 month ago

Rosenstein is not to be trusted , the first order of defense for the Deep State to protect itself , would be to minimalize the damages that have been exposed , would be to have one of their own pretend as if the damages were not a big deal. That PERSON is Rosenstein and he reveals this by, instead of being outraged by these events , he treats them as if they were no big deal. Nothing to see here , move along. It is so obvious that Rosenstein is there to protect the guilty.

Sessions is either complicit or too feeble minded to handle what needs to be done here. He to needs to be replaced . He has sat far too long on the fence to be trust worthy, considering the unprecedented amount of corrupt that has appeared in the DOJ and the FBI . Has he even been able to charge even one of the many leakers yet ? Either he is very bad at AG or very unlucky, either way it doesn't recommend him much.

Mary Burns, 1 month ago (edited)

Always have had the belief that if a man/woman you are talking to won't look you face to face, eye to eye, when you're questioning them, there must be something they are trying to hide. I noticed throughout this hearing that Rosenstein rarely would look at the person who was questioning him, he'd just give them a quick glance now and then. Just my thoughts! I don't trust Rosenstein,, or the whole lot of them.

Walter Knight, 2 weeks ago

FBI Agents do not take notes of interviews or interrogations. FBI agents do not record interviews or interrogation. When FBI agents finish a interview or interrogation they return to their office and write a report. In the report they write whatever they want to.

I have confidence ( or I had confidence) that the FBI agents wrote their reports to the best of their memory. I worked at a State law enforcement agency. I always took notes and I relied on those notes. I guess this is just evidence of how intelligent Federal Agents are. My Trump clean up the FBI. Someday they may regain the reputation they once had.

tinmanrobby, 1 month ago (edited)

After the rambling from Gowdy, Rosenstein answered very witty. What humans and Americans see is a biased Mueller team that conducted a false investigation based on false evidence (dossier) that was compromised of any justice or information. Knowing now that the Mueller team is corrupt, the investigation is void.

It has produced information though, the DNC, FBI, DOJ, and H. Clinton have now been exposed as absolutely corrupt. Done with the fake collusion joke, now onto the real collusion and corruption, that would save Mueller his tarnished reputation.

J.P. Man, 1 month ago

An honest unbiased Deputy AG would be really pissed off that his employees were acting this way. They would want to get to the bottom of this mess and fire the shit out of some people.

Does this idiot seem like he's at all disturbed by the evidence being presented to him? No, he's trying his best to cover for these corrupt individuals period. Mueller and his entire team need to be dissolved immediately with prejudice and if crimes are uncovered of abuse of authority, charges need to be filed.

teri raser, 1 month ago (edited)

He's a weasel. and just another person whose testimony is infuriating to watch bc of the refusal to answer, the focus on semantics, denial of everything, and using roundabout tactics to purposefully avoid actually stating an opinion or fact.

These hearings end up being pointless even though the reps make great points and lay out great analysis.

[Jan 28, 2018] Rep. Gaetz Demands Deputy AG Rosenstein Explain Conflicts of Interest Within FBI, DOJ

Notable quotes:
"... It's time to bring in the lie detector as that will be the only way to get the truth out of him. ..."
Dec 13, 2017 | www.youtube.com

AgentPepsi1 , 1 month ago

Mr. Rosenstein, what do you actually know? I think you are lying in saying that you do not know, but protecting Hillary.

Salvatore pluchino , 1 month ago

MY FELLOW AMERICANS WE HAVE A CORRUPTED SYSTEM DOJ FBI AND THE GRAND ONE ITS SELF YES THE FUCKEN CIA

Barbara Dallaire , 1 month ago (edited)

Hon. Rosenstein is not very honorable at this moment as he is a stone waller holding it all up. It's time to bring in the lie detector as that will be the only way to get the truth out of him.

[Jan 27, 2018] President Trump Calls for Release of FISA Abuse Memo by S.Noble

Mueller investigation as a palace coup ?
Jan 27, 2018 | www.independentsentinel.com

President Trump has called for the release of the FISA abuse memo which reportedly lists abuses by the DoJ/FBI, The Washington Post reported Saturday. The DoJ warned against its release until they have had a chance to look it over. This is the same DoJ/FBI that is stonewalling and withholding information from Congress.

Trump reportedly told Attorney General Jeff Sessions through Chief of Staff John Kelly that he wants to see the memo released, believing that it will shed light on the special counsel investigation.

The decision rests with the House Intelligence Committee overseen by Chair Devin Nunes who has said he wants to release them as early as Monday.

[Jan 27, 2018] As of January 2018 Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey, is starting to look like something Trump should have done sooner.

Highly recommended!
This quote belongs to Pat Buchanan and was taken from In a Trump Hunt, Beware the Perjury Trap
Jan 27, 2018 | www.unz.com

Consider what is now known of how Comey and the FBI set about ensuring Hillary Clinton would not be indicted for using a private email server to transmit national security secrets. The first draft of Comey's statement calling for no indictment was prepared before 17 witnesses, and Hillary, were even interviewed. Comey's initial draft charged Clinton with "gross negligence," the requirement for indictment. But his team softened that charge in subsequent drafts to read, "extreme carelessness."

Attorney General Loretta Lynch, among others, appears to have known in advance an exoneration of Clinton was baked in the cake. Yet Comey testified otherwise.

Also edited out of Comey's statement was that Hillary, while abroad, communicated with then-President Obama, who had to see that her message came through a private server. Yet Obama told the nation he only learned Hillary had been using a private server at the same time the public did.

A trial of Hillary would have meant Obama in the witness chair being asked, "What did you know, sir, and when did you know it?"

[Jan 27, 2018] In a Trump Hunt, Beware the Perjury Trap by Pat Buchanan

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... For what Mueller is running here is not, as Trump suggests, a "witch hunt." It is a Trump hunt. ..."
"... Mueller's problem: He has no perjury charge to go with it. And the heart of his obstruction case, Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey, is starting to look like something Trump should have done sooner. ..."
"... More information has also been unearthed about FBI collusion with British spy Christopher Steele, who worked up -- for Fusion GPS, the dirt-divers of the Clinton campaign -- the Steele dossier detailing Trump's ties to Russia and alleged frolics with prostitutes in a Moscow hotel. ..."
"... Not only did the Steele dossier apparently trigger a wider FBI investigation of the Trump campaign, it served as the basis of FBI requests for FISA court warrants to put on Trump the kind of full-court press J. Edgar Hoover put on Dr. King for the Kennedys and LBJ. ..."
"... Amazing. Oppo-research dirt, unsourced and unsubstantiated, dredged up by a foreign spy with Kremlin contacts, is utilized by our FBI to potentially propel an investigation to destroy a major U.S. presidential candidate. And the Beltway media regard it as a distraction. ..."
"... This cabal appears to have set goals of protecting Obama, clearing Hillary, defeating Trump, and bringing down the new president the people had elected, before he had even taken his oath. Not exactly normal business for our legendary FBI. What have these people done to the reputation of their agency when congressmen not given to intemperate speech are using words like "criminal," "conspiracy," "corruption" and "coup" to describe what they are discovering went on in the FBI executive chambers? ..."
"... As for Trump, he should not sit for any extended interview by FBI agents whose questions will be crafted by prosecutors to steer our disputatious president into challenging or contradicting the sworn testimony of other witnesses. This a perjury trap. Let the special counsel submit his questions in writing, and let Trump submit his answers in writing. ..."
"... What is going on in the US is a travesty of justice. For an outside observer of American politics, I'm flappergasted about the corruption and criminal energy the top brass of the FBI, the DOJ, together with the Obama and Clinton mafia, to discredit not only candidate Trump but President-elect Trump and finally the sitting President. Mr. Buchanan is right, arguing that Trump should not sit in with Mueller's agents, who want to trap him. ..."
"... After this witch- or Trump hunt is over, the Trump administration has to be clean up the mess in the FBI, DOJ and the other US institutions. Simultaneously, Clinton, Lynch, Chomey, McCabe and all the political criminals, including former President Obama, have to be brought to justice. What this political gang initiated is unprecedented in US history. Even Watergate fades in the face of this conspiracy of American institutions against a sitting president. ..."
Jan 26, 2018 | www.unz.com

Asked if he would agree to be interviewed by Robert Mueller's team, President Donald Trump told the White House press corps, "I would love to do it as soon as possible. under oath, absolutely."

On hearing this, the special counsel's office must have looked like the Eagles' locker room after the 38-7 rout of the Vikings put them in the Super Bowl. If the president's legal team lets Trump sit for hours answering Mueller's agents, they should be disbarred for malpractice. For what Mueller is running here is not, as Trump suggests, a "witch hunt." It is a Trump hunt.

After 18 months investigating Trumpian "collusion" with Putin's Russia in hacking the DNC's and John Podesta's emails, the FBI has hit a stone wall. Failing to get Trump for collusion, the fallback position is to charge him with obstruction of justice. As a good prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich, the tactic is understandable.

Mueller's problem: He has no perjury charge to go with it. And the heart of his obstruction case, Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey, is starting to look like something Trump should have done sooner.

Consider what is now known of how Comey and the FBI set about ensuring Hillary Clinton would not be indicted for using a private email server to transmit national security secrets. The first draft of Comey's statement calling for no indictment was prepared before 17 witnesses, and Hillary, were even interviewed. Comey's initial draft charged Clinton with "gross negligence," the requirement for indictment. But his team softened that charge in subsequent drafts to read, "extreme carelessness."

Attorney General Loretta Lynch, among others, appears to have known in advance an exoneration of Clinton was baked in the cake. Yet Comey testified otherwise.

Also edited out of Comey's statement was that Hillary, while abroad, communicated with then-President Obama, who had to see that her message came through a private server. Yet Obama told the nation he only learned Hillary had been using a private server at the same time the public did.

A trial of Hillary would have meant Obama in the witness chair being asked, "What did you know, sir, and when did you know it?"

More information has also been unearthed about FBI collusion with British spy Christopher Steele, who worked up -- for Fusion GPS, the dirt-divers of the Clinton campaign -- the Steele dossier detailing Trump's ties to Russia and alleged frolics with prostitutes in a Moscow hotel. While the Steele dossier was shopped around town to the media, which, unable to substantiate its lurid and sensational charges, declined to publish them, Comey's FBI went all in.

Not only did the Steele dossier apparently trigger a wider FBI investigation of the Trump campaign, it served as the basis of FBI requests for FISA court warrants to put on Trump the kind of full-court press J. Edgar Hoover put on Dr. King for the Kennedys and LBJ.

Amazing. Oppo-research dirt, unsourced and unsubstantiated, dredged up by a foreign spy with Kremlin contacts, is utilized by our FBI to potentially propel an investigation to destroy a major U.S. presidential candidate. And the Beltway media regard it as a distraction.

An aggressive Republican Party on the Hill, however, has forced the FBI to cough up documents that are casting the work of Comey's cohorts in an ever more partisan and sinister light.

This cabal appears to have set goals of protecting Obama, clearing Hillary, defeating Trump, and bringing down the new president the people had elected, before he had even taken his oath. Not exactly normal business for our legendary FBI. What have these people done to the reputation of their agency when congressmen not given to intemperate speech are using words like "criminal," "conspiracy," "corruption" and "coup" to describe what they are discovering went on in the FBI executive chambers?

Bob Mueller, who inherited this investigation, is sitting on an IED because of what went on before he got there. Mueller needs to file his charges before his own investigation becomes the subject of a Justice Department investigation by a special counsel.

As for Trump, he should not sit for any extended interview by FBI agents whose questions will be crafted by prosecutors to steer our disputatious president into challenging or contradicting the sworn testimony of other witnesses. This a perjury trap. Let the special counsel submit his questions in writing, and let Trump submit his answers in writing.

At bottom, this is a political issue, an issue of power, an issue of whether the Trump revolution will be dethroned by the deep state it was sent to this capital to corral and contain.

If Trump is guilty of attempted obstruction, it appears to be not of justice, but obstruction of an injustice being perpetrated against him.

Trump should be in no hurry to respond to Mueller, for time no longer appears to be on Mueller's side.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, "Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever."


Ludwig Watzal , Website January 26, 2018 at 7:41 am GMT

What is going on in the US is a travesty of justice. For an outside observer of American politics, I'm flappergasted about the corruption and criminal energy the top brass of the FBI, the DOJ, together with the Obama and Clinton mafia, to discredit not only candidate Trump but President-elect Trump and finally the sitting President. Mr. Buchanan is right, arguing that Trump should not sit in with Mueller's agents, who want to trap him.

After this witch- or Trump hunt is over, the Trump administration has to be clean up the mess in the FBI, DOJ and the other US institutions. Simultaneously, Clinton, Lynch, Chomey, McCabe and all the political criminals, including former President Obama, have to be brought to justice. What this political gang initiated is unprecedented in US history. Even Watergate fades in the face of this conspiracy of American institutions against a sitting president.

To restore the credibility of the FBI, DOJ and all other government institutions, especially the Intel community, the US administration have to clean out the Augean stables.

Zogby , January 26, 2018 at 10:06 am GMT
I think some of the accusations being levelled against Mueller are blown out of proportion and show a misunderstanding of Mueller's task. His job is to investigate what happened, including the possibility that people working for Trump did illegal things that are not Trump's own fault. That doesn't imply Mueller is "out to get Trump".

Let me give an example. Michael Flynn conducted some informal contacts with the Russians during the transition under Trump's instruction and told by Trump not to disclose it. This is perfectly legal and legitimate. Flynn then mislead Pence, and later lied to the FBI about the contacts. This was a tactical mistake by Flynn, because he could have told both that he's under instruction from Trump not to disclose it and refuse to answer. Now Flynn says in his own defense to Mueller that he was acting under Trump's instruction. So Mueller wants to ask Trump if Flynn was acting under Trump's instruction. That doesn't mean it's illegal if Flynn was acting under Trump's instruction. But if Flynn was acting on his own – there may be a case against Flynn.

You could argue that Trump doesn't care about this – even if Flynn was acting on his own – which goes back to Trump having constitutional authority to shut down this fishing expedition because Trump has no interest in it.

The bottom line is that Trump has a problem with Republicans in Congress. Mueller can't do anything against Trump – only Congress can. Trump doesn't trust Republicans in Congress to protect him for doing what any President Elect and certainly President is entitled to do. If Trump could trust Republicans in Congress – he could fire Mueller, Rosenstein and Sessions and end the investigation.

The Alarmist , January 26, 2018 at 10:48 am GMT

Mueller: "Did you fire James Comey?"

Trump: "Yes."

Mueller: "Why?"

Trump: "It is within my Constitutional prerogatives to terminate officers who serve under me."

Mueller: "What were the grounds for the termination?"

Trump: "Asked and answered."

[Lather, rinse, repeat]

Mueller: "What is the nature of your contacts with Russian nationals or the Russian Government?"

Trump: "What contact? Do you have any specific contact in mind?"

Mueller: "Your meeting with X on [date]."

Trump: "Before I answer that, can you tell me and my counsel for the record how you were made aware of that?"

[Jan 27, 2018] Some advice to Trump about his interrogation by Mueller

Jan 27, 2018 | www.unz.com

The Alarmist , January 26, 2018 at 10:48 am GMT

Mueller: "Did you fire James Comey?"

Trump: "Yes."

Mueller: "Why?"

Trump: "It is within my Constitutional prerogatives to terminate officers who serve under me."

Mueller: "What were the grounds for the termination?"

Trump: "Asked and answered."

[Lather, rinse, repeat]

Mueller: "What is the nature of your contacts with Russian nationals or the Russian Government?"

Trump: "What contact? Do you have any specific contact in mind?"

Mueller: "Your meeting with X on [date]."

Trump: "Before I answer that, can you tell me and my counsel for the record how you were made aware of that?"

[Jan 27, 2018] Everybody We Know Robert Mueller Has Interviewed

Jan 27, 2018 | time.com

Special counsel Robert Mueller and congressional investigators have interviewed roughly 50 people who work at the White House or were involved in Donald Trump's campaign.

Based on a compilation of CBS of known interviews, that number includes at least 20 White House employees and one Cabinet official: Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

[Jan 26, 2018] Mueller's investigation accidentally exposes FBI cover-up of Saudi role in 9-11

Notable quotes:
"... Under Mueller's leadership, the FBI tried to discredit the story, publicly countering that agents found no connection between the Sarasota Saudi family and the 2001 terrorist plot. The reality is that the FBI's own files contained several reports that said the opposite, according to the Ft. Lauderdale-based news group's ongoing investigation . Files obtained by reporters in the course of their lengthy probe reveal that federal agents found "many connections" between the family and "individuals associated with the terrorist attacks on 9/11/2001." The FBI was forced to release the once-secret reports because the news group sued in federal court when the information wasn't provided under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). ..."
"... "find out who really knocked down the World Trade Center," ..."
"... Trump's visit with Saudi King Salman occurred on May 20 - just four days after Judge Altonaga ruled that the FBI should face a Freedom of Information trial in an attempt to pursue transparency surrounding the funding of the 9/11 attacks. During the visit, Trump announced plans for a $110 BILLION weapons deal with Saudi Arabia, which adds a new level of context that should be considered when looking at why Altonaga then reversed her decision on June 29. ..."
"... Now, Americans are told we must believe the outcome of these "investigations" into Russian interference as the man behind them has been exposed as complicit in covering for the people responsible for the deadliest terror attack ever carried out on American soil ..."
Jan 24, 2018 | www.sott.net

Further deteriorating the propaganda surrounding the government's probe into alleged interference by Russia in the 2016 election, recently discovered court documents have just revealed that the person leading the investigation, Special Counsel Robert Mueller, was complicit in covering up Saudi Arabia's role in 9/11. Not only did Mueller cover for the Florida Saudi family but, according to the documents, he released intentionally deceptive statements to muddy the official investigation.

The new report, released by Florida Bulldog is nothing short of bombshell.

According to the CIA's database, 15 of the 19 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia, and when they first arrived in the United States, nine of them arrived in Florida.

As TFTP previously reported, Florida Bulldog, a team of investigative journalists that has spent years probing the connections between the 9/11 hijackers and Saudi Arabia, sued the FBI in 2012 for details on the ties between the hijackers and a rich Saudi family that mysteriously left all of their belongings and abandoned their luxury home in Sarasota, Florida, just two weeks before the attacks. The lawsuit led to the release of materials from a 2002 FBI report, which found "many connections" between the Saudi family and "individuals associated with the terrorist attacks on 9/11/2001."

The idea that a federal judge would go from supporting a group of investigative journalists and pushing for transparency, to supporting the FBI and insisting that protecting the location of a security camera was worth covering up the funding of the 9/11 attacks, may seem bizarre - but it is a common practice under all administrations.

As Judicial Watch reports,

Under Mueller's leadership, the FBI tried to discredit the story, publicly countering that agents found no connection between the Sarasota Saudi family and the 2001 terrorist plot. The reality is that the FBI's own files contained several reports that said the opposite, according to the Ft. Lauderdale-based news group's ongoing investigation . Files obtained by reporters in the course of their lengthy probe reveal that federal agents found "many connections" between the family and "individuals associated with the terrorist attacks on 9/11/2001." The FBI was forced to release the once-secret reports because the news group sued in federal court when the information wasn't provided under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

The disingenuous statements were issued by FBI officials in Miami and Tampa in a desperate effort to disparage a 2011 story exposing the agency's covert investigation of the Sarasota Saudis as well as reporting that it had been concealed from Congress. Mueller is referenced in a document index that was ordered by a federal judge to be created in late November 2017. The south Florida judge, William J. Zloch, a Ronald Reagan appointee, asked the FBI to explain where it had discovered dozens of pages of documents in the public-records case filed six years ago. The index reference to then-FBI Director Mueller appears in an item involving an agency white paper written a week after the publication of a news story about the abrupt departure of Saudis Abdulaziz and Anoud al-Hijji from their Sarasota area home about two weeks before 9/11. The couple left behind their cars, clothes, furniture, jewelry and other personal items. "It was created to brief the FBI Director concerning the FBI's investigation of 4224 Escondito Circle," the al-Hijjis' address, the index says.

Though the recently filed court documents reveal Mueller received a briefing about the Sarasota Saudi investigation, the FBI continued to publicly deny it existed and it appears that the lies were approved by Mueller. Not surprisingly, he didn't respond to questions about this new discovery emailed to his office by the news organization that uncovered it. Though the mainstream media has neglected to report this relevant development, it's difficult to ignore that it chips away at Mueller's credibility as special counsel to investigate if Russia influenced the 2016 presidential election. Even before the Saudi coverup documents were exposed by nonprofit journalists, Mueller's credentials were questionable to head any probe. Back in May Judicial Watch reminded of Mueller's misguided handiwork and collaboration with radical Islamist organizations as FBI director.

What's more, under Mueller's leadership, the FBI purged all anti-terrorism material deemed "offensive" to Muslims in an attempt to grovel and give in to multiple radical Islamist groups.

As The Free Thought Project has reported , Trump is also complicit in covering for the Saudis, as he went from calling for holding Saudi Arabia accountable for its involvement in 9/11, to ignoring the idea that the country could have had any involvement at all.

After months on the campaign trail, in which he pledged that if he was elected, Americans would "find out who really knocked down the World Trade Center," Trump made Saudi Arabia the first foreign nation he visited as president of the U.S.

Trump's visit with Saudi King Salman occurred on May 20 - just four days after Judge Altonaga ruled that the FBI should face a Freedom of Information trial in an attempt to pursue transparency surrounding the funding of the 9/11 attacks. During the visit, Trump announced plans for a $110 BILLION weapons deal with Saudi Arabia, which adds a new level of context that should be considered when looking at why Altonaga then reversed her decision on June 29.

Now, Americans are told we must believe the outcome of these "investigations" into Russian interference as the man behind them has been exposed as complicit in covering for the people responsible for the deadliest terror attack ever carried out on American soil .

Matt Agorist is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world. Agorist is also the Editor at Large at the Free Thought Project.

[Jan 25, 2018] Trump, in the coming Trump-Mueller interview, doesn't know what Mueller may already know from his interviews with others so if he spins and lies he's toast

Notable quotes:
"... I do not think Mueller can get Trump on collusion with Russia ..specifically because there was no collusion with the Kremlin/official Government. Instead there were a lot of contacts with individual Russians seeking to get a deal on something to boost their own Russian creds with Putin or for their own private financial gain. ..."
"... Mueller's investigation has, according to this article, accidentally turned up something that should put Mueller in prison: https://www.sott.net/article/375184-Muellers-investigation-accidentally-exposes-FBI-cover-up-of-Saudi-role-in-9-11 ..."
Jan 25, 2018 | www.unz.com

renfro , Next New Comment January 25, 2018 at 3:08 am GMT

Back to the matter at hand

I do not think Mueller can get Trump on collusion with Russia ..specifically because there was no collusion with the Kremlin/official Government.
Instead there were a lot of contacts with individual Russians seeking to get a deal on something to boost their own Russian creds with Putin or for their own private financial gain.
Also outreach by Kushner to Russian money men and bankers for his 1 billion in debt.

Mueller has a better chance of getting Trump on obstruction of justice and maybe lying to the FBI because Trump, in the coming trump- Mueller interview, doesn't know what Mueller may already know from his interviews with others so if he spins and lies he's toast.

I don't care about Trump being impeached as much as I care about removing Kushner. Kushner is dirtier than pig shit and using his position to trade influence for money for the Kushners in every foreign contact he makes.

Trumps relationship with Kushner is beyond weird, really, really weird .something ties them together and I would bet money that's its being party to money laundering thru their real estate deals and loans. Trump cant be the genius he claims to be, and claims Jared is. and they not know all the money flowing to them from Russian oligarchs and other known money movers isn't dirty as hell.

Twodees Partain , Next New Comment January 25, 2018 at 3:52 am GMT
@renfro

Mueller's investigation has, according to this article, accidentally turned up something that should put Mueller in prison: https://www.sott.net/article/375184-Muellers-investigation-accidentally-exposes-FBI-cover-up-of-Saudi-role-in-9-11

If Trump was the stable genius he says he is, he would have seen to it that Kushner would never have married his daughter. If he is even a little smart, he would give Kushner the boot now, though it's probably too late to avoid the consequences of his appointment of Kushner.

Dimwit that I am, my conclusion is that Trump isn't a genius after all.

Cloak And Dagger , Next New Comment January 25, 2018 at 4:33 am GMT
@Twodees Partain

Interesting link.

As The Free Thought Project has reported, Trump is also complicit in covering for the Saudis, as he went from calling for holding Saudi Arabia accountable for its involvement in 9/11, to ignoring the idea that the country could have had any involvement at all.

After months on the campaign trail, in which he pledged that if he was elected, Americans would "find out who really knocked down the World Trade Center," Trump made Saudi Arabia the first foreign nation he visited as president of the U.S.

Trump's visit with Saudi King Salman occurred on May 20 – just four days after Judge Altonaga ruled that the FBI should face a Freedom of Information trial in an attempt to pursue transparency surrounding the funding of the 9/11 attacks.

During the visit, Trump announced plans for a $110 BILLION weapons deal with Saudi Arabia, which adds a new level of context that should be considered when looking at why Altonaga then reversed her decision on June 29.

That is an unexpected twist!

[Jan 24, 2018] Wolff book: Hope Hicks is his daughter and Ivanka his wife

This sleazy Wolff just can't stop...
This "Trump chicks theme" was definitely underutilized in fire and Fury" Wolff later tried to revive and capitalize of it as the tool to support the declining book sales with "Triumph mistress" rumor.
Notable quotes:
"... Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, who Trump blames for the bulk of the book, as he was one of Wolff's most prominent sources, reportedly told people that 'The daughter ... will bring down the father.' ..."
"... Me thinks Mr. Wolff has got bats in the belfry. ..."
"... ''I have included that which I believe to be true'' - a quote from Wolff himself. Also, The Author's Note to Wolff's book states the quotes in it are all "recreations". ..."
Jan 22, 2018 | dailymail.co.uk

Hope Hicks is his real daughter and Ivanka is his real WIFE: How Trump can't say no to his family and is totally reliant on his communications director

With Melania Trump often keeping a low profile, White House staffers refer to first daughter Ivanka Trump as her father's 'real wife' and Communications Director Hope Hicks as the president's 'real daughter,' a new book alleged.

Author Michael Wolff, who wrote the forthcoming 'Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House' revealed these designations in the context of who is now closest to Trump, with many high-level aides leaving within the president's first year.

That distinction goes to Hicks, the president's 29-year-old former campaign press secretary who Wolff said is now Trump's 'most powerful White House advisor.'

'Hicks' primary function was to tend to the Trump ego, to reassure him, to protect him, to buffer him, to soothe him,' Wolff wrote in a story about the writing of his book, published Thursday by the Hollywood Reporter.

'It was Hicks who, attentive to his lapses and repetitions, urged him to forgo an interview that was set to open the 60 Minutes fall season,' the author continued. 'Instead, the interview went to Fox News' Sean Hannity who, White House insiders happily explained, was willing to supply the questions beforehand.'

In a preview of the book published Thursday in the Hollywood Reporter, Wolff also explained how Trump couldn't say no to his kids, casting this characteristic as 'foolishness.'

'It's a littleee, littleee complicated,' the president reportedly told his first Chief of Staff Reince Priebus when explaining why he wanted to give Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner official White House jobs.

They're now serving as senior advisers in the West Wing. However, Wolff did not describe their tenure as a happy one. 'By July, Jared and Ivanka, who had, in less than six months, traversed from socialite couple to royal family to the most powerful people in the world, were now engaged in a desperate dance to save themselves, which mostly involved blaming Trump himself,' Wolff wrote Thursday in the Hollywood Reporter.

'It was all his idea to fire Comey!' the couple nicknamed 'Javanka' reportedly said, referring to Trump's ouster of the former FBI director that prompted the appointment of a special counsel.

Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, who Trump blames for the bulk of the book, as he was one of Wolff's most prominent sources, reportedly told people that 'The daughter ... will bring down the father.'

Ashley Parker is a White House reporter for The Washington Post. She joined The Post in 2017, after 11 years at The New York Times, where she covered the 2012 and 2016 presidential campaigns and Congress, among other things.  Follow @ashleyrparker

EmmaJanesMommy , Jacksonville, United States, 2 weeks ago

Me thinks Mr. Wolff has got bats in the belfry.

Sen Dog, Everywhere, United Kingdom, 2 weeks ago

''I have included that which I believe to be true'' - a quote from Wolff himself. Also, The Author's Note to Wolff's book states the quotes in it are all "recreations". Nice try liberals .

[Jan 23, 2018] Hope Hicks Famous For 'Hard-To-Maneuver-In Short Skirts,' According To 'Fire And Fury' Author by Paula Mooney

This "Trump chicks theme" was definitely underutilized in fire and Fury" Wolff later tried to revive and capitalize of it as the tool to support the declining book sales with "Triumph mistress" rumor.
Notable quotes:
"... Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... The Stepford Wives ..."
"... Dallas Observer ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... Morning Joe ..."
Jan 22, 2018 | www.inquisitr.com
Hope Hicks is featured prominently in Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House by Michael Wolff, as proven by book excerpts that have made it to the public, as reported by the Inquisitr . The tome speaks of the 29-year-old Hicks' unlikely rise to become one of President Donald Trump's closest confidantes, even relating Hope's preferred manner of dressing to one that aligns with Trump's favorite look.

"Ten days before Donald Trump's inauguration as the forty-fifth president, a group of young Trump staffers -- the men in regulation Trump suits and ties, the women in the Trump-favored look of high boots, short skirts, and shoulder-length hair -- were watching President Barack Obama give his farewell speech as it streamed on a laptop in the transition offices."

Wolff notes that Hope was a 26-year-old when she was hired onto the Trump campaign as the first official hire. Hailing from Greenwich, Connecticut, Hicks worked as a model prior to getting into the PR business and working for Ivanka Trump's fashion line. After Ivanka captured Hope for her dad's political campaign in 2015, Hicks took the political ride of a lifetime to become the gatekeeper to President Trump.

Michael writes about Hope's family, who worried about Hicks "having been taken captive" into the Trump world, with friends and loved ones joking that Hope would need therapy once her time in the White House was done. Wolff describes Hicks as a young woman who was inexperienced but "famous among campaign reporters for her hard-to-maneuver-in short skirts."

Book: Hope Hicks Famous For 'Hard-To-Maneuever-In' Short Skirts, Rumored Uniform Trump Liked In White House Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

The overall tenor of Hope's portrayal in the best-seller paints her as a "yes woman" who is way too overeager to seek Trump's approval. Fearful of making errors, Hicks was protected by Trump from blame -- an act that baffled others, claimed the author. Hope rose in the ranks to become Trump's most trusted aide, albeit one who was assigned the difficult task of getting Trump positive press in the form of a winning New York Times article.

Hope always backed Trump's point-of-view, according to Fire and Fury , with Hicks often landing firmly on Trump's side when the president complained of the media being out to get him with negativity. Hicks even developed an instinct for the types of articles that would make Trump happy, with Hope presenting those clips to the president, even as others brought Trump bad news.

Wolff even likened Hope to the classic robotic wives seen in The Stepford Wives , calling Hicks "a kind of Stepford factotum, as absolutely dedicated to and tolerant of Mr. Trump as anyone who had ever worked for him." According to the Dallas Observer , even crossing the line and allegedly calling Hicks a " piece of tail " hasn't apparently dampened Hope's enthusiasm in working for Trump, in Wolff's estimation, with Hicks failing to get the coveted and positive New York Times coverage.

"That, in the president's estimation, had yet failed to happen, 'but Hope tries and tries,' the president said. On more than one occasion, after a day -- one of the countless days -- of particularly bad notices, the president greeted her, affectionately, with 'You must be the world's worst PR person.'"

Hicks was also the person who greeted Trump each morning, "quaking" to tell him what the latest Morning Joe episode said about the president in the wake of Trump refusing to watch the show. Either way, Trump's closeness with Hope was something that not only baffled White House insiders but caused concern and alarm.

Michael wrote that "the relationship of the president and Hope Hicks, long tolerated as a quaint bond between the older man and a trustworthy young woman, began to be seen as anomalous and alarming." Existing as a go-between in the middle of President Trump and the media, Hope's complete devotion to Trump and her accommodating nature to him was being blamed as part of the reason for Trump's "unmediated behavior."

"His impulses and thoughts -- unedited, unreviewed, unchallenged -- not only passed through him, but, via Hicks, traveled out into the world without any other White House arbitration. 'The problem isn't Twitter, it's Hope,' observed one communication staffer."

[Jan 22, 2018] Fire and Fury SMU's Hope Hicks' Star Turn in Michael Wolff's Scathing Trump Book by Stephen Young

This "Trump chicks theme" was definitely underutilized in fire and Fury" Wolff later tried to revive and capitalize of it as the tool to support the declining book sales with "Triumph mistress" rumor.
Jan 08, 2018 | www.dallasobserver.com
Hope Hicks can now add "being objectified by the president of the United States" to the narrow list of accomplishments she's racked up as she's gone from SMU English major to White House communications director .

According to Michael Wolff's new presidential tell-all Fire and Fury , Hicks, a former model and Gossip Girl novelization cover star who caught Trump's eye while modeling for Ivanka Trump's clothing line, had on an on-again, off-again relationship with former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski. Hicks and Lewandowski's liaison culminated in a Page Six-covered screaming match on 61st Street near Park Avenue and Manhattan in May 2016.

The next month, Trump fired Lewandowski. In a moment of compassion, Hicks, who'd by then become one of Trump's closest, and tight-lipped, confidants, asked Trump how she could help Lewandowski.

"Why?" Trump replied, Wolff writes. "You've already done enough for him. You're the best piece of tail he'll ever have."

Hicks immediately fled the room after Trump's comments, according to Wolff, but it wasn't enough to stop her rise through the campaign's ranks. When Trump dumped former communications director Anthony Scaramucci last summer, Hicks, who did not return a request to comment on the contents of the book, took over as his interim replacement. In November, she took over the job full time.

Trump has disputed both the content of the book and Wolff's claim that he was granted extensive access to the White House in 2017. "I authorized Zero access to White House (actually turned him down many times) for author of phony book! I never spoke to him for book. Full of lies, misrepresentations and sources that don't exist," the president tweeted last week.

Sarah Sanders, the White House press secretary, called the book a "complete fantasy," during a press conference Thursday, the day before Fire and Fury 's release.

[Jan 22, 2018] US Intelligence Could Well Have Wiretapped Trump by Ron Paul

Notable quotes:
"... Unable to come to terms with losing the 2016 election, Democrats are still pushing the 'Russiagate' probe and blocking the release of a memo describing surveillance abuses by the FBI, former Congressman Ron Paul told RT. ..."
"... I don't think anybody is seeking justice or seeking truth as much as they're seeking to get political advantage ..."
"... "I would be surprised if they haven't spied on him. They spy on everybody else. And they have spied on other members of the executive branch and other presidents." ..."
"... "The other day when they voted to get FISA even more power to spy on American people, the president couldn't be influenced by the fact that they used it against him. And I believe they did, and he believes that." ..."
"... "I've always maintained that government ought to be open and the people ought to have their privacy. But right now the people have no privacy and all our government does is work on secrecy and then it becomes competitive between the two parties, who get stuck with the worst deal by arguing, who's guilty of some crime," the politician explained. ..."
"... Paul also blasted the infamous 'Russian Dossier' compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele, and which the Democrats used in their attack on Trump, saying it ..."
"... "has no legitimacy being revealing [in terms of] of Trump being associated with Russia. From the people I know The story has been all made up, essentially." ..."
"... "I'm no fan of Trump. I'm not a supporter of his, but I think that has been carried way overboard. I think the Democrats can't stand the fact that they've lost the election, and they can't stand the fact that Trump is a little bit more independent minded than they like," he said. ..."
Jan 20, 2018 | www.informationclearinghouse.info

Unable to come to terms with losing the 2016 election, Democrats are still pushing the 'Russiagate' probe and blocking the release of a memo describing surveillance abuses by the FBI, former Congressman Ron Paul told RT.

A top-secret intelligence memo, believed to reveal political bias at the highest levels of the FBI and the DOJ towards President Trump, may well be as significant as the Republicans say, Ron Paul told RT. But, he added, "there's still to many unknowns, especially, from my view point."

"Trump connection to the Russians, I think, has been way overblown, and I'd like to just get to the bottom of this the new information that's coming out, maybe this will reveal things and help us out," he said.

"Right now it's just a political fight," the former US Congressman said. "I think they're dealing with things a lot less important than the issue they ought to be talking about Right now, I don't think anybody is seeking justice or seeking truth as much as they're seeking to get political advantage."

Trump's claims that he was wiretapped by US intelligence agencies on the orders of the Obama administration may well turn out to be true, Paul said.

"I would be surprised if they haven't spied on him. They spy on everybody else. And they have spied on other members of the executive branch and other presidents."

However, he criticized Trump for doing nothing to prevent the Senate from voting in the expansion of warrantless surveillance of US citizens under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) earlier this week.

"The other day when they voted to get FISA even more power to spy on American people, the president couldn't be influenced by the fact that they used it against him. And I believe they did, and he believes that."

"I've always maintained that government ought to be open and the people ought to have their privacy. But right now the people have no privacy and all our government does is work on secrecy and then it becomes competitive between the two parties, who get stuck with the worst deal by arguing, who's guilty of some crime," the politician explained.

The fact that Democrats on the relevant committees have all voted against releasing the memo "might mean that Trump is probably right; there's probably a lot of stuff there that would exonerate him from any accusation they've been making," he said.

Paul also blasted the infamous 'Russian Dossier' compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele, and which the Democrats used in their attack on Trump, saying it

"has no legitimacy being revealing [in terms of] of Trump being associated with Russia. From the people I know The story has been all made up, essentially."

"I'm no fan of Trump. I'm not a supporter of his, but I think that has been carried way overboard. I think the Democrats can't stand the fact that they've lost the election, and they can't stand the fact that Trump is a little bit more independent minded than they like," he said.

This article was originally published by RT -

[Jan 22, 2018] Trump Jr. on FISA memo Media, Democrats working together to deceive Americans

Jan 22, 2018 | www.washingtonexaminer.com

Donald Trump Jr. called for the release of a memo that allegedly contains information about Obama administration surveillance abuses and suggested that Democrats are complicit with the media in misleading the public.

"It's the double standard that the people are fed by the Democrats in complicity with the media, that's why neither have any trust from the American people anymore," Trump said on Fox News Friday.

[Jan 22, 2018] Michael Wolff Hints at Current Trump Infidelity Hidden in Fire and Fury

"These people are the lowest form of life; vicious, ignorant, scheming, petty, savage, manipulative -- if given the opportunity and the right incentive, he would stab any one of them, and not lose a minute's sleep... Again, what was his motivation -- something is missing from this puzzle. Drugs or drink or mental illness? ... those rats in that sinking sack, they're fighting... He may be the dictionary definition of a firestarter to some, to me he's a rancid piece of filth." Guardian comment
"If you think abandoning your wife and cashing in on your "batty" mother-in-law's home is cruel, it turns out this is par for the course."
"And, really, sex with someone other than his wife and the attention of other people is all Michael Wolff really wants, at the end of the day."
"A clue to Wolff's character emerged in 2009, when the "bald, trout-pouted" 55-year-old was caught sleeping with a 28-year-old intern at Vanity Fair. His wife kicked him out of their Manhattan home, but not before joining him in an attempt to evict her 85-year-old mother because they wanted to sell the apartment she lived in. As you can tell, he's a charmer."
This is really sleazy interview... Typical project of Wolff own behavior as in
Wolff: "If this is a book that will bring down his President.." And the only topic he is capable to discuss is dirty rumors about President infidelity. For Trump the book title "The great transition" ;-)
Notable quotes:
"... Maher asked if it was about a woman, to which Wolff answered, "Yeah. I didn't have a blue dress." ..."
"... Without hesitation, Wolff said yes. "You just have to read between the lines," he said, adding that it's toward the end of the book. "Now that I've told you, when you hit that paragraph you're going to say bingo." ..."
Jan 22, 2018 | www.thewrap.com

Everybody has been talking about Michael Wolff's best seller "Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House" since it came out Jan. 5, but the author said there is one thing hinted at in its pages that he is surprised no has asked him about.

"Real Time With Bill Maher" kicked off its 16th season Friday night with Wolff, who hinted there was a tidbit near the end of the book that he thought would get tongues wagging. At first cagey, he said it's something he is "absolutely sure of, but was so incendiary that I just didn't have the ultimate proof."

Maher asked if it was about a woman, to which Wolff answered, "Yeah. I didn't have a blue dress."

Of course, the "blue dress" he's referring to is Monica Lewinsky's infamous outfit that was said to be stained with President Bill Clinton's semen.

His curiosity piqued, Maher wondered if it was somebody Trump is "f -- ing now?"

Without hesitation, Wolff said yes. "You just have to read between the lines," he said, adding that it's toward the end of the book. "Now that I've told you, when you hit that paragraph you're going to say bingo."

Watch the full interview above.


landshark123 , January 20, 2018 4:48 PM

25 years ago it would be categorized as nothing more then a Kitty Kelly gossip rag.

He wouldn't answer Bill's question because he didn't want to get his butt sued into oblivion. He seems to be reveling in how he BS'd his way into there.

Afra , January 20, 2018 10:16 AM

IMAGINE -- in your wildest imaginings -- that this was President O.
The more sordid America becomes the more his hyperverbal "base", along with our traditional "enemies", celebrate.

ErikKC2 , January 20, 2018 7:06 AM

And, it will only get more "interesting" over the next couple of weeks. I ordered the book on the first day I could. In fact, I pre-ordered it. And, it was just shipped today. Give it a couple of weeks for the shipments from Amazon to be delivered, and the book digested.

And, of course, it's Hope Hicks.

Afra ErikKC2 , January 20, 2018 10:18 AM

I'm going to say a creeper in that back door he mentioned. I like to give the young lady a little more credit. In my head. 😟

I Heart Suckabees , January 20, 2018 4:35 AM

get it, Sarah Sanders!

[Jan 22, 2018] Sleazy Wolff tried to prolong his five minutes of fame

This is the real Wolff -- sleazy and unscrupulous gossip columnist
Notable quotes:
"... Wolff said Friday on HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher" that he was "absolutely sure" of such a tryst, but acknowledged that he lacked "ultimate proof." "I didn't have the blue dress," Wolff told Maher, referring to the key piece of evidence from Bill Clinton's notorious Oval Office dalliance with Monica Lewinsky. ..."
Jan 20, 2018 | www.nydailynews.com

Originally from: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/michael-wolff-claims-trump-affair-white-house-article-1.3767521

President Trump may be having an extramarital affair in the White House, according to the latest bombshell claim from "Fire and Fury" author Michael Wolff.

Wolff said Friday on HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher" that he was "absolutely sure" of such a tryst, but acknowledged that he lacked "ultimate proof." "I didn't have the blue dress," Wolff told Maher, referring to the key piece of evidence from Bill Clinton's notorious Oval Office dalliance with Monica Lewinsky.

[Jan 22, 2018] Michael Wolff's Trump Affair Clues Point to Nikki Haley, and We Hate This Story (Column) by Tim Molloy

Yahoo tried to amplify the unsubstantiated and malicious rumor. Not the first time, not the last. So Yahoo bottom feeders are happy to feast on Wolff's excrements...
Notable quotes:
"... By October, however, many on the president's staff took particular notice of one of the few remaining Trump opportunists: Nikki Haley, the UN ambassador. Haley -- 'as ambitious as Lucifer," in the characterization of one member of the senior staff -- had concluded that Trump's tenure would last, at best, a single term, and that she, with requisite submission, could be his heir apparent. Haley had courted and befriended Ivanka, and Ivanka had brought her into the family circle, where she had become a particular focus of Trump's attention, and he of hers. ..."
"... Bingo? Wolff adds that Trump "had been spending a notable amount of private time with Haley on Air Force One and was seen to be grooming her for a political future." Wolff cited one "senior Trumper" who said the problem with Trump mentoring Haley "is that she is so much smarter than him." ..."
"... The White House, Haley and Wolff did not immediately respond to a request for comment. There are many problems with this theory, aside from Wolff going on national television to accuse people of having affairs. Among them: Haley, the former governor of South Carolina, was one of Trump's early Republican critics. ..."
"... She campaigned for Marco Rubio and then supported Ted Cruz. When she gave the Republican response to President Obama's final State of the Union address, she seemed to criticize Trump when she said: "During anxious times, it can be tempting to follow the siren call of the angriest voices." Trump responded by calling her "weak" on immigration . ..."
Jan 22, 2018 | www.yahoo.com

"Fire and Fury" author Michael Wolff's accusation that President Trump is currently having an affair set off online speculation Saturday about who the other party might be. Based on Wolff's clues, it appears he's making insinuations about UN Ambassador Nikki Haley.

A quick side note before we go further: This is gross on every level. We don't have any evidence whatsoever to suggest that what Wolff is hinting at is true, so please consider this a story about an author making an accusation he admits he can't prove.

That said, Wolff went on "Real Time With Bill Maher" Friday to provide some encouragement to readers who may have given up halfway through "Fire and Fury" when he said a passage near the end of his book hints at the affair.

Also Read: Trump Demands Babies Not Be Born After Nine Months: No, Really, He Said This

"Now that I've told you, when you hit that paragraph you're going to say bingo," Wolff told Maher.

We've read the book. While there are icky descriptions about Trump's behavior with his spokeswoman, Hope Hicks, they come before the book's midway point. ("You're the best piece of tail he'll ever have!" Trump is quoted as telling Hicks about an ex, which Wolff says sent Hicks "running from the room.")

The only passage we've found near the end of the book that references a Trump relationship with a woman who isn't his wife or daughter is this one:

By October, however, many on the president's staff took particular notice of one of the few remaining Trump opportunists: Nikki Haley, the UN ambassador. Haley -- 'as ambitious as Lucifer," in the characterization of one member of the senior staff -- had concluded that Trump's tenure would last, at best, a single term, and that she, with requisite submission, could be his heir apparent. Haley had courted and befriended Ivanka, and Ivanka had brought her into the family circle, where she had become a particular focus of Trump's attention, and he of hers.

Bingo? Wolff adds that Trump "had been spending a notable amount of private time with Haley on Air Force One and was seen to be grooming her for a political future." Wolff cited one "senior Trumper" who said the problem with Trump mentoring Haley "is that she is so much smarter than him."

Also Read: 'Real Time': Michael Wolff Hints at Current Trump Infidelity Hidden in Bombshell Book (Video)

The White House, Haley and Wolff did not immediately respond to a request for comment. There are many problems with this theory, aside from Wolff going on national television to accuse people of having affairs. Among them: Haley, the former governor of South Carolina, was one of Trump's early Republican critics.

She campaigned for Marco Rubio and then supported Ted Cruz. When she gave the Republican response to President Obama's final State of the Union address, she seemed to criticize Trump when she said: "During anxious times, it can be tempting to follow the siren call of the angriest voices." Trump responded by calling her "weak" on immigration .

... ... ...

[Jan 22, 2018] Clapper may have been the one behind using British intelligence to spy on Trump.

Highly recommended!
Jan 22, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

MK ULTRA Alpha -> SethPoor Jan 22, 2018 10:22 AM Permalink

I read about this, it was quickly brushed under the rug. Didn't know it was as extensive because media coverage on this angle hasn't been clear. Good report.

And if this is covered closely, then we may get some traction about how it was done and who pulled the strings. This maybe why former NSC Clapper is running scared, he set up his own personal intelligence network (there were reports early on, Clapper had his own intelligence network besides the 17 official intel agencies) to spy for the Obama WH, both he and former CIA Brennan were running intel ops for the Obama WH. Brennan ran political intel for the Obama election campaign. Indicating the Deep State intelligence apparatus is deeply involved in presidential elections. Brennan political campaign intel network using Deep State assets, next Obama;s NSC, next Obama's CIA director and was said to be the most political CIA director in history by CIA employees.

Clapper may have been the one behind using British intelligence to spy on Trump. It would explain Clappers irrational statements about Trump, sabotage and incitement of government employees not to follow Trump's orders. We got that from Clapper, Brennan and former CIA director Hayden. All three have joined forces in LA, using celebrities to continue the coup against Trump. They formed, essentially a convert political action group using celebrities, to make their case in the media. It's illogical for Clapper to continue with the coup, there is no reward in it unless, he is guilty of treason and must continue the coup to protect himself. In other words, this isn't for Hillary Clinton.

[Jan 22, 2018] The Justice Department and FBI set up the meeting at Trump Tower between Trump Jr., Manafort and Kushner with controversial Russian officials to make Trump's associates appear compromised

Highly recommended!
People are really angry, judging from comments
Notable quotes:
"... Six U.S. agencies created a stealth task force, spearhead by CIA's Brennan, to run domestic surveillance on Trump associates and possibly Trump himself. ..."
"... To feign ignorance and to seemingly operate within U.S. laws, the agencies freelanced the wiretapping of Trump associates to the British spy agency GCHQ. ..."
"... GCHQ did not work from London or the UK. In fact the spy agency worked from NSA's headquarters in Fort Meade, MD with direct NSA supervision and guidance to conduct sweeping surveillance on Trump associates. ..."
"... Following the Trump Tower sit down, GCHQ began digitally wiretapping Manafort, Trump Jr., and Kushner. ..."
"... OK Ron Johnson (R-WI), the author was Steven Boyd, Assistant for Legislative Affairs / DOJ - Hold him in contempt of congress. ..."
Jan 22, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

SethPoor -> BennyBoy Jan 22, 2018 9:47 AM Permalink

Jim in MN -> SethPoor Jan 22, 2018 9:52 AM Permalink

Bottom Line:

The party in power used the apparatus of the police state to spy on and damage an opposition candidate.

There really isn't a higher crime in our supposed system.

THEN there's the cover-up.....as in deleting files and pretending you never had them even though the IG already does.

otschelnik Jan 22, 2018 8:55 AM Permalink

OK Ron Johnson (R-WI), the author was Steven Boyd, Assistant for Legislative Affairs / DOJ - Hold him in contempt of congress. Have him arrested. During questioning, press him to the wall, get him to tell him who in the FBI told him 'they couldn't find them.' Then go arrest that guy too. Rinse and repeat. Look what these bastards did to Mike Flynn. Go get 'em. NOW!!!

VideoEng_NC Jan 22, 2018 9:10 AM Permalink

One of the silver linings in this mess is the clear view that the FBI is ridiculously compromised & has chucked its standard of non-political leanings right out the window. Shutting it down may have once seemed a long shot, now maybe not so much. If you haven't noticed, another Trump boomerang has happened to the Left with their favorite word starting with the letter S. This time I'm thinking Storm is what's about to follow instead of hole or house.

stustd Jan 22, 2018 9:14 AM Permalink

Business as usual continues: Comey to teach ethical leadership course at William & Mary:

http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/369695-comey-to-teach-ethical-leadership-course-at-william-mary

wcole225 Jan 22, 2018 9:21 AM Permalink

If the republican leadership hiccup here on the release of the memo then it's things as usual and forget a full on war from them. I don't trust those bastards as far as I can throw them. Trump then needs to fire Sessions and Mueller and go full on attack mode with a press conference doing what he does and light the left's hair on fire like never before. This is war and it needs kicked off in grand fashion. The left's ability to guilt shame has been neutered and they know it and are scared to death.

CatInTheHat -> wcole225 Jan 22, 2018 11:03 AM Permalink

Why do people think Trump is going to do anything? When his actions say he is doing exactly what the WARMONGERING fuckers want??

Trump is Barry is Clinton is Bush...

the not so mig Jan 22, 2018 9:31 AM Permalink

these FBI Stazi guys are no good, shutter down

two hoots Jan 22, 2018 9:33 AM Permalink

The Genius has lost control. Washington is oozing and dripping its corrupt, manipulating, narcissistic and deceiving bile. Just one thin mint is all it will take. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HJZPzQESq_0

wobblie Jan 22, 2018 9:50 AM Permalink

Nothing like a colossal waste of time to distract the herd.

https://therulingclassobserver.com/2018/01/07/unity-at-the-top-division

azusgm Jan 22, 2018 10:10 AM Permalink

At one point, Peter Strzok made reference to a phone that "could not be traced". He probably had a 2nd phone for a period. I'd be willing to bet it was a BlackBerry. While he had (if he had) that 2nd phone, he could have used that more secure phone for his communications with Lisa Page.

The IG may have all of Strzok's text messages with Lisa Page from his official phone, but none from the 2nd phone.

azusgm -> azusgm Jan 22, 2018 10:35 AM Permalink

Here's an article that includes the reference to the 2nd phone.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/peter-strzok-lisa-page-texts-trump-idiot/

The article says that it was Lisa Page who suggested using the 2nd phone. That message from her was in March 2016.

"Also in March, Page seems to be concerned about whether the things they say about Mr. Trump can be found out. "So look, you say we can text on that phone when we talk about Hillary because it cant be traced," she wrote."

Haven't read through the entire thread here, but the end date of the interval for the missing data is also the date that Mueller was appointed.

Lostinfortwalton Jan 22, 2018 10:34 AM Permalink

All of this shit is at the NSA Blufdale, Utah, facility. Why are the taxpayers spending umpteen billion dollars collecting and storing this stuff if the government is going to pretend it doesn't exist? You can bet this internet post, and anyone who replies to it, is archived there. We are supposed to be afraid of being surveiled by assholes like Clapper and Brennan. Guess what? We're not.

enough of this Jan 22, 2018 10:34 AM Permalink

If Horowitz now claims he really didn't receive all the text messages he requested, then he too is part of a massive cover-up and any report that is issued by the DOJ's Inspector General's office can't be believed by definition.

insanelysane -> enough of this Jan 22, 2018 10:41 AM Permalink

It's possible Horowitz lied then to placate the Congressional inquiry. I believe that the Deep State believes that they can get Trump impeached before the shit hits the fan with the Sedition by the FBI. There is always Plan B for the Deep State but 50 years after they rid the world of 2 Kennedys the general population isn't buying it.

BendGuyhere Jan 22, 2018 10:37 AM Permalink

The FACT PATTERN supports a RICO indictment and prosecution.

RUDY GIULIANI for SPECIAL PROSECUTOR.

Hang Comey, Lynch, Mueller, Clinton, TO MAKE SURE IT NEVER HAPPENS AGAIN!

MrBoompi Jan 22, 2018 11:00 AM Permalink

If I understand how US communication systems work, every network has a splitter which copies all transmissions to NSA, or related agencies, storage devices. I would be shocked if they didn't collect everything from FBI or DOJ employees, and I mean everything, from FBI devices or their private devices. If the files are sitting safe and secure on NSA storage devices, only the NSA could really "lose" them. And this would also be true for every one of Clinton's messages. Why don't we ever see Congress ask NSA for anything? Is that verboten?

Arrow4Truth Jan 22, 2018 11:58 AM Permalink

"This glaring contradiction suggests someone is lying or perhaps simply incompetent." Wrong! It's both.

currency Jan 22, 2018 12:34 PM Permalink

FBI and DOJ and the Weasel Liar Rosenstein are LIARS. They don't want the world and the American people know what Liars, corrupt, in the tank for Hilray to know what they did are still trying to due. Trump needs to clean house of the FBI and DOJ of all Clinton and Obama people.

[Jan 22, 2018] From Elizabeth Taylor to Donald Trump Insinuations, Half Truths and Lies by Dr. Fred Eichelman

Notable quotes:
"... "No, it can really hurt" she replied. She went on to tell us how in one story the cover headline announced "Elizabeth Taylor is slowly killing her mother." As it turned out the story was about how her mom worried about her daughter's health and travels. Elizabeth went on to relate that in the United Kingdom you could not get away with such stories. She had sued successfully 15 times, winning each. "I did not need or want the money" she confided. "I just wanted a retraction. That is not possible in the United States." ..."
"... These kind of distortions about Elizabeth were not just prevalent in magazines. Books have done the same thing. There is a biography of Elizabeth Taylor by an author known for penning page turners about celebrities with as much dirt as possible. In one story she described an argument between Elizabeth and John during a political gathering locally here in the Roanoke Valley. One that had her storming off and not returning. We were there with other friends and no such thing happened. ..."
"... Now I am a strong supporter of the First Amendment and the idea of freedom of speech. I also know I do not have the right to go into a theater showing a film and shout "FIRE" if there is no fire. I could be rightfully arrested for that because of the possible danger to public safety. ..."
"... Today we see people in the liberal media distributing fake news with every opportunity they can find. They have done every thing they possibly can to see the presidency of Donald Trump fail. The Michael Wolff book makes a case that every one around the president, including family, think he is not competent and not smart. He is fair game for such fake news. ..."
Jan 13, 2018 | politichicks.com

The title may cause readers to think this is strictly about the half baked book by Michael Wolff on the Trump Administration. That is already being debunked by even some liberal sources like the Washington Post which has been finding errors on every page. The only criticism I would make is that too much is being said about it and that makes sales of the book go up. The old adage that "Get banned in Boston if you want a best seller" holds true.

The concern here is the interpretation by the courts of the First Amendment that people with a public position are fair game for the spreading of information whether true or untrue. This has been going on for some time and the first I became aware of it was with the entertainment media.

Dr. Fred Eichelman and Elizabeth Taylor

Back in the late seventies my wife Carolyn and I were privileged to host Elizabeth Taylor several times when her husband John Warner was running for the U.S. Senate here in Virginia. We found Elizabeth a very open person and easy to talk with and there was one question I had to ask.

I had seen a number of covers on Super Market magazines with stories hinting of scandals and Elizabeth Taylor was a popular subject. I had heard that Hollywood stars did not mind that sort of thing as bad publicity was still good publicity as long as it kept their name in the news. I had to ask Elizabeth if this was true in her case.

"No, it can really hurt" she replied. She went on to tell us how in one story the cover headline announced "Elizabeth Taylor is slowly killing her mother." As it turned out the story was about how her mom worried about her daughter's health and travels. Elizabeth went on to relate that in the United Kingdom you could not get away with such stories. She had sued successfully 15 times, winning each. "I did not need or want the money" she confided. "I just wanted a retraction. That is not possible in the United States."

These kind of distortions about Elizabeth were not just prevalent in magazines. Books have done the same thing. There is a biography of Elizabeth Taylor by an author known for penning page turners about celebrities with as much dirt as possible. In one story she described an argument between Elizabeth and John during a political gathering locally here in the Roanoke Valley. One that had her storming off and not returning. We were there with other friends and no such thing happened.

Now I am a strong supporter of the First Amendment and the idea of freedom of speech. I also know I do not have the right to go into a theater showing a film and shout "FIRE" if there is no fire. I could be rightfully arrested for that because of the possible danger to public safety.

Today we see people in the liberal media distributing fake news with every opportunity they can find. They have done every thing they possibly can to see the presidency of Donald Trump fail. The Michael Wolff book makes a case that every one around the president, including family, think he is not competent and not smart. He is fair game for such fake news. People with common sense know that a man who was an honor student in college, became a billionaire, was a success on TV and able to get elected president is no small potatoes. The success with our economy alone should erase such ideas.

Of course not being a born politician Donald Trump believes in fighting back and he makes ample use of Twitter for this. This is also not news as when Ronald Reagan was president his competence and ability to lead was often called into question. Speaker of the House Tip O'Neil labeled President Ragean as an "amiable dunce." Reagan made ample use of television to go over the heads of congressional critics and the media. In this digital age Donald Trump is only doing what many wish they could do to protect themselves.

While our president can protect himself, you have to wonder about so many others in government, business. the entertainment world and elsewhere who have found untrue criticism in the media too much to handle. The definition of what people are not exempt from untrue news keeps broadening. This sort of thing is even happening on college campuses where conservative teachers have found themselves under attack by student publications using the First Amendment as their defense even when not telling the truth.

There is no easy answer here and we can only wish that someday common sense will find a solution to protect us all from such attacks.

Dr. Fred Eichelman is a retired teacher and a director for Point North Outreach, a Christian media organization. He recently had a book published, Faith, Family, Film-A Teacher's Trek. Fred is a former local Republican Committee chairman and has attended hundreds of conventions from political to science fiction. He sees the two as compatible. Fred also tells us he values very much a title we gave him since he could not be a PolitiChick. PolitiDude.

[Jan 22, 2018] Gowdy Steve Bannon's Testimony Presented Personal 'Credibility Issue'

Notable quotes:
"... House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) said that after lengthy closed-door testimony by two former top Trump aides, he found that one of the men appears to have a "credibility" problem. ..."
"... But, he said that Bannon's testimony was more eventful. Gowdy said that at one point, Bannon attempted to dodge questions by exercising a privilege that does not exist. "That was his slip-up," Gowdy said. "He got this notion that 'hey, I'm going to create a privilege that no one's ever heard of before that doesn't exist in the law." Gowdy said the only "dangerous" issue for President Donald Trump is if "credible evidence" is presented. ..."
"... He said Bannon's credibility has taken a hit, since he once said there was no chance the Russian lawyer who met with Donald Trump Jr. did not meet Trump Sr. ..."
"... But, after he was fired, Bannon reportedly told author Michael Wolff that there was no chance the meeting hadn't occurred. ..."
"... "This is the same witness that said that members of the president's family committed acts of treason. So, he's got a credibility issue," Gowdy said. "If they're hinging the entire case on Steve Bannon's credibility, good luck to the prosecution." ..."
Jan 17, 2018 | Fox News Insider

As seen on The Story with Martha MacCallum

House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) said that after lengthy closed-door testimony by two former top Trump aides, he found that one of the men appears to have a "credibility" problem.

Former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and former White House adviser Steve Bannon spent several hours testifying before Gowdy's committee Tuesday.

Gowdy said Lewandowski wanted to answer every question posed to him, but that his lawyers advised him against answering those regarding his work after he left the campaign. "That [onus is] on the lawyer, not the witness. Corey is going to come back and answer every question anyone has," Gowdy said.

But, he said that Bannon's testimony was more eventful. Gowdy said that at one point, Bannon attempted to dodge questions by exercising a privilege that does not exist. "That was his slip-up," Gowdy said. "He got this notion that 'hey, I'm going to create a privilege that no one's ever heard of before that doesn't exist in the law." Gowdy said the only "dangerous" issue for President Donald Trump is if "credible evidence" is presented.

He said Bannon's credibility has taken a hit, since he once said there was no chance the Russian lawyer who met with Donald Trump Jr. did not meet Trump Sr.

But, after he was fired, Bannon reportedly told author Michael Wolff that there was no chance the meeting hadn't occurred.

"This is the same witness that said that members of the president's family committed acts of treason. So, he's got a credibility issue," Gowdy said. "If they're hinging the entire case on Steve Bannon's credibility, good luck to the prosecution."

Watch more above.

[Jan 22, 2018] Michael Wolff's 'Fire and Fury' to Become TV Series (Exclusive) by Lesley Goldberg, Andy Lewis

Notable quotes:
"... Endeavor Content -- the financing and sales arm formed in October between sister companies William Morris Endeavor and IMG -- has purchased film and television rights to the No. 1 best-selling book. The massive deal is said to be in the seven-figure range. ..."
Jan 17, 2018 | www.hollywoodreporter.com

Michael Wolff's controversial Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House is coming to television.

Endeavor Content -- the financing and sales arm formed in October between sister companies William Morris Endeavor and IMG -- has purchased film and television rights to the No. 1 best-selling book. The massive deal is said to be in the seven-figure range. Endeavor Content plans to adapt the book as a TV series. A network is not yet attached, as Endeavor will now begin shopping the project.

Wolff will executive produce the series, with veteran Channel 4 and BBC executive Michael Jackson -- now CEO of indie producer Two Cities Television -- also on board to produce.

[Jan 22, 2018] How Michael Wolff duped the White House into giving him access to Trump's aides by Allahpundit

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... According to Bloomberg , Wolff didn't even initiate this project. It fell into his lap when Trump dialed him up out of the blue to compliment him on a CNN appearance in which Wolff bashed the media's coverage of the president. So susceptible is POTUS to flattery and so eager is he to satisfy his eternal grudge with the press that a little bit of cheerleading from Wolff was all it took for him to place his trust, essentially blindly, in a far more devious reporter than the ones he's always complaining about. ..."
"... CNN drives him nuts so he turned to Michael farking Wolff, of all people, to try to balance the scales. The irony is as thick and dense as the brain matter of White House deputies who went along. ..."
"... In fact, for the first six months of Trump's presidency no one in his White House -- including then-Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and then-Press Secretary Sean Spicer -- stopped Wolff from repeatedly scheduling appointments in the West Wing. He visited about 17 times, according to a person familiar with the matter. Nor did they monitor what Trump's aides were telling the controversial author ..."
"... [An] Obama aide said his communications team kept strict tabs on authors' work -- micromanaging access to the White House, assigning press aides to mind the authors during interviews or asking staff for summaries afterward, closely tracking lines of questioning and making sure writers were escorted off the grounds after their appointments. ..."
"... Some of Bloomberg's sources claim that Kellyanne Conway gave him access more than once and appears to have spoken with him at some length. Conway's a longtime political player. What's her excuse for not knowing Wolff's reputation and intervening to protect Trump from him? ..."
"... Dubke left the job in late May but Trump's fateful phone call to Wolff allegedly happened in early February 2017, with Wolff conducting interviews at the White House not long afterward. Dubke's a right-wing media-relations pro of longstanding. He didn't speak up about Wolff either? ..."
"... In the end, though, it all falls on Hope Hicks, who was Trump's informal communications director before being formally appointed to the job in September at the tender age of 29 after Dubke quit. Although she had no leadership role in the West Wing until the fall, she's an old-school Trump deputy who was with him before the campaign. She's either the unofficial head of the Praetorian Guard or she's a very high-ranking member. Where the hell was she when Wolff came knocking? Did she do any due diligence as to whether he could be trusted to write the sort of book he was proposing to write? If so, how did she miss the high-profile critiques of his methods in magazines like Brill's Content and The New Republic ? It's tempting to accuse Hicks of being too young or simply out of her depth to do her job effectively for Trump -- but then how do you explain the apparent negligence on Conway's and Dubke's parts, too? ..."
"... Wolff's going to end up filthy rich from all this, and not just from book royalties. "Fire & Fury" will soon be a TV show (although, more likely, a TV miniseries) with Wolff himself as executive producer. And given the propensity of Trump staffers to leak, he's probably already hard at work on "Fire & Fury 2: More Fiery, More Furious." Congrats to Hope and everyone else for sharpening a knife and handing it to Wolff before allowing him to stab their boss repeatedly with it. Exit question via a million different people: Isn't there already a "Fire & Fury" TV show on cable news every day? ..."
Jan 17, 2018 | hotair.com

... According to Bloomberg , Wolff didn't even initiate this project. It fell into his lap when Trump dialed him up out of the blue to compliment him on a CNN appearance in which Wolff bashed the media's coverage of the president. So susceptible is POTUS to flattery and so eager is he to satisfy his eternal grudge with the press that a little bit of cheerleading from Wolff was all it took for him to place his trust, essentially blindly, in a far more devious reporter than the ones he's always complaining about.

... ... ...

[Jan 22, 2018] Michael Wolff discusses Fire and Fury

British interviewer is heads above US MSM interviewers. He also approach Wolff with kid gloves, but he pins a couple of time his ego ;-)
Of cause BBC is a neoliberal swap and they interviewed Wolff half-dozen times :-)
In his BBC interview and this interview Wolff clearly state that Trump is not fit for the office "mentally unfit for office" ;-). Here Wolff also claims is Trump is like a child.
Also on the question of allegation of "collision with Russia" Wolff state that "emperor has no clothes" while in reality it is Wolff who has no cloth doing this hatcet job without verification of even basic facts. He also pushed Bannon under the bas.
When confronted with that fact that Bannon challenged of Wolff claims, he just start blabbing.
The interviewer suggested that this book is a fascinating gossip taken at the heat of the moment, that this is one dimensional book.
Jan 06, 2018 | bbc.co.uk

Michael Wolff discusses his book Fire and Fury, about US President Donald Trump's first nine months in office, with Nick Robinson. Mr Trump has accused the author of making up stories and has called him a "total loser".

[Jan 22, 2018] EPIC: CNN Host GOES OFF On Anti-Trump Michael Wolff for what he did on Live Tv

Highly recommended!
Nice exposure of duplicitous character Wolff "I certainly said whatever necessary to get the story"
Key question: Did you misrepresent yourself trying to get access to Trump. "I like the person" "I want to humanize the president" "You know that I like him" "Nobody is doing it" "I might be able to change perceptions"
Another interesting question: "Where all those pledges accurate when you made them? " Why you present yourself as a beacon to combat bias against the President.
Jan 21, 2018 | www.youtube.com
Tom S., 3 days ago
Mainstream media turned into political party! Mainstream media professional liars are political assassins for the worst people on this planet. Mainstream media is a political apparatus which is bought and paid off by champagne-socialists, thieves set-up-entirely to serves rich and powerful to extract from small and weak. Mainstream media professional liars will continue to support political scum and their style of cronyism and rampant corruption that is stunting the country's development.

Mainstream media will make sure to siphon off large chunks of targeted electoral subsidies and Lobbying cash which will enable them to preserve their fancy cars, apartments and privileged status as American people suffer!

JD Mott, 1 week ago
Like everything the Left thinks is Nirvana this too is turning against them. Wolfe is well known for injecting fiction into his recollection.

[Jan 22, 2018] CNN's Brian Stelter owned by Michael Wolff: No disrespect, you border on being a ridiculous figure

Notable quotes:
"... CNN, Michael Wolff -- Reliable Sources. HaHaHaHaHaHa! ..."
Feb 01, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Daniel Stetson

CNN, Michael Wolff -- Reliable Sources. HaHaHaHaHaHa! 

Daniel Jansen, 1 month ago
The media is totally ignorant of real issues that matter to the American people they are so involved in defending their own opinions that they have forgotten their purpose of keeping the public informed of what's happening they have taken it upon them self to defend the Democrats and their corrupt world order agenda
Keith M, 2 weeks ago

Media=fake news

 Official Jayo, 1 week ago

Pot meet kettle. I now believe Wolff knew exactly what he was doing with the fake book. He knew the media would eat it up and he could ride off into the sunset with one last big payday.

Frankie Dog Turner, 1 week ago

CNN is just very fake news. Brian Stelter is a ridiculous figure and so if Wolfe. Like Uncle Fester and Mini-Me two pitiful idiots on stage together..

Raymond Armatino, 1 week ago

This was staged. Its there to make Wolf seem like he is telling truth in his book and I dont buy it for many reasons.

[Jan 21, 2018] Mifsud Offering Alu Tubes to Papadopoulos?

Looks like another false flag operation , now with the participation of Italian intelligence services.
Notable quotes:
"... Appears Prof. Mifsud of Maltese descent has close links to former Italian Minister of the Interior Vincenzo Scotti and the Italian Intelligence Agency. See more information from the Link Campus based in Rome. With links to a corrupt Saudi Prince, getting some sense now of a covert operation or a piggy-back Mossad act with knowledge of Intelligence gained from Five Eyes raw data ... ..."
"... "We are very excited to be partnering with the Link Campus Foundation to fund and enable important scholarship that looks to build bridges of mediation in conflict regions around the world," ..."
"... "We have respected the work of Link Campus for some time. The Centre hopes to play an important role in contributing to its efforts toward creating peace and good governance by strengthening the ability of researchers, media, and civil society to speak out and be informed on vital contemporary issues." ..."
"... "The Centre will take a very pragmatic approach to helping bring smarter and more relevant thinking to the area of conflict mediation." ..."
"... "Offering this research platform for experts is EDOF's way of trying to support those who are doing the heavy thinking as to how we can bring resolution to some of the more intractable conflicts in our world." ..."
"... Prince Turki Al Faisal said the evidence, disclosed by the United States late, was "overwhelming" and "clearly shows official Iranian responsibility". "Somebody in Iran will have to pay the price," said Prince Turki , who also served as his country's envoy to Britain and the US. ..."
"... ... Prince Turki al-Faisal , the chairman of the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies, is a former director of Saudi Arabia's intelligence services and ambassador to the United States. ..."
Jan 21, 2018 | www.boomantribune.com

Appears Prof. Mifsud of Maltese descent has close links to former Italian Minister of the Interior Vincenzo Scotti and the Italian Intelligence Agency. See more information from the Link Campus based in Rome. With links to a corrupt Saudi Prince, getting some sense now of a covert operation or a piggy-back Mossad act with knowledge of Intelligence gained from Five Eyes raw data ...

[The Maltese government send a warning to Colonel Gaddafi when the F-111 fighter bombers were en route to Libya in the 1980s.]

Partenariats of EDOF

EDOF & the Link Campus Foundation
Establishing the Essam & Dalal Obaid Foundation Centre for War and Peace Studies at Link Campus University in Rome.

The EDOF Centre will work closely with the various interdisciplinary academic departments at the Link Campus University as well as with international governments and organizations in order to support experts, academics, researchers, diplomats, governments, and civil society activists in their attempts to help countries in conflict, crisis and transition around the world. The Partnership Agreement was signed in Rome on May 8, 2017.

"We are very excited to be partnering with the Link Campus Foundation to fund and enable important scholarship that looks to build bridges of mediation in conflict regions around the world," said EDOF's CEO, Dr. Nawaf Obaid . "We have respected the work of Link Campus for some time. The Centre hopes to play an important role in contributing to its efforts toward creating peace and good governance by strengthening the ability of researchers, media, and civil society to speak out and be informed on vital contemporary issues."

Professor Joseph Mefsud will be appointed the Founding Director of the Centre for a period of three years. Scholarships and bursaries will be allocated in the field of War and Peace studies. The Centre will also hold international seminars and conferences, produce research publications, and appoint Senior Fellows in the field of War and Peace studies.

According to Tarek Obaid ( 1 ), Founder of EDOF, "The Centre will take a very pragmatic approach to helping bring smarter and more relevant thinking to the area of conflict mediation." It will achieve this by having three areas of concentration: training, mentoring, and providing platforms for professional and expert seminars; building up the capacity of institutions and civic groups; and working with independent and official partners to remove barriers to free expression, robust public debate and open citizen engagement. "Offering this research platform for experts is EDOF's way of trying to support those who are doing the heavy thinking as to how we can bring resolution to some of the more intractable conflicts in our world."

[( 1 ) Source: Sarawak Report ]

Belfer Center - Nawaf Obaid Biography

Nawaf Obaid is the Visiting Fellow for Intelligence & Defense Projects at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. He is also a weekly columnist for the pan-Arab daily, Al Hayat Newspaper.

He is currently the CEO of the Essam and Dalal Obaid Foundation (EDOF).

From 2004 to 2007, he was Special Advisor for Strategic Communications to Prince Turki Al Faisal , while Prince Turki was the Saudi Ambassador to the United Kingdom & Ireland, and then the United States. And from 2007 to 2011, he worked with the Saudi Royal Court, where he was seconded as a Special Advisor to the Saudi Information Minister. Most recently, he served as the Special Counselor to the Saudi Ambassador to the United Kingdom from 2011 to 2015.

Joseph Mifsud: Brexit: stepping off a cliff or indipendence day?

Il 20 marzo alle ore 10:30 presso l'Università degli Studi Link Campus University, si è tenuto il convegno "Brexit: stepping off a cliff or indipendence day?"

Il convegno determina il primo atto di una collaborazione italo-britannica post Brexit, ed è stato organizzato in occasione della firma del Protocollo d'intesa tra l'Università degli Studi Link Campus University e la London School of Economics and Political Science, tenutasi lo stesso giorno nella sede dell'università romana.

Sono intervenuti: Franco Frattini - Presidente del Corso in Studi Strategici e Scienze Diplomatiche e Presidente della SIOI, Vincenzo Scotti - Presidente dell'Università degli Studi Link Campus University, Michael Cox - Direttore della LSE IDEAS e Professore di Relazioni Internazionali presso la LSE.

Link Campus University - Vincenzo Scotti, President
Portrait of a Political Leader: Vincenzo Scotti

Linked to Saudi Prince Turki Al Faisal ...

Hariri Caught In Sudairi Power Struggle - US Policy
Iranian dissident does not believe in 'Saudi ambassador' plot

Prince Turki Al Faisal said the evidence, disclosed by the United States late, was "overwhelming" and "clearly shows official Iranian responsibility". "Somebody in Iran will have to pay the price," said Prince Turki , who also served as his country's envoy to Britain and the US.

...
Prince Turki al-Faisal , the chairman of the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies, is a former director of Saudi Arabia's intelligence services and ambassador to the United States.

[Jan 21, 2018] Michael Wolff: Everyone in the liberal media is a Trump enemy

This Jul 12, 2017 interview of Wolff when he took somewhat pro-Trump stance...
Jul 12, 2017 | BBC Newsnight

Explicit statement of Wolff on FBI-contractor organized meeting in Trump tower that definitely suggests malice.

[Jan 21, 2018] Michael Wolff's Book: Trump lawyers threaten ex-aide Bannon - BBC

BBC presstitutes on meeting in Trump tower
Jan 04, 2018 | bbc.co.uk

Tony Blair disclaimed the statement of Wolff in the book

[Jan 21, 2018] The Government Shutdown Is Not Shutting Down Robert Mueller's Russia Probe

Jan 21, 2018 | www.huffingtonpost.com

The Justice Department confirmed this week that employees in Mueller's office are exempt from the shutdown and can continue their work. His office is not funded through the regular congressional appropriations process.

[Jan 20, 2018] Will Steve Bannon s Testimony Bring Down Jared by Abigail Tracy

A more interesting question is how those testimonies might affect Bannon -- he is in a very hot water now. If he thought that the meeting was so incriminating why he did not contact FBI and just decided to feed juicy gossip to Wolff?
Also he was not present at the meeting and was not a member of Trump team until two months later. From who he got all this information ? Was is just a slander by disgruntled employee?
Notable quotes:
"... To reiterate, those comments were not aimed at Don Jr. ..."
"... Bannon has denied that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government during the election ..."
"... Wolff also quotes the former White House strategist as saying, "This is all about money laundering. [Robert] Mueller chose [senior prosecutor Andrew] Weissmann first and he is a money-laundering guy. Their path to fucking Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr., and Jared Kushner . . . It's as plain as a hair on your face." ..."
"... Bannon then zeroed in on Kushner specifically, adding that "[i]t goes through Deutsche Bank and all the Kushner shit. The Kushner shit is greasy. They're going to go right through that. They're going to roll those two guys up and say play me or trade me." ..."
Jan 16, 2018 | www.vanityfair.com

"The three senior guys in the campaign thought it was a good idea to meet with a foreign government inside Trump Tower in the conference room on the 25th floor -- with no lawyers. They didn't have any lawyers," Bannon is quoted as saying in Fire and Fury. "Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it's all of that, you should have called the F.B.I. immediately." Bannon reportedly speculated that the chance the eldest Trump son did not involve his father in the meeting "is zero."

When Bannon's comments became public, Trump excoriated his former strategist, whom he accused of having "lost his mind." But while Bannon has since apologized for the remarks and sought to walk back a number of the quotes, he's stopped short of denying that he viewed the Trump Tower meeting as treasonous. Instead, he's merely shifted the blame away from Trump Jr. and onto Manafort. "My comments were aimed at Paul Manafort, a seasoned campaign professional with experience and knowledge of how the Russians operate. He should have known they are duplicitous, cunning, and not our friends. To reiterate, those comments were not aimed at Don Jr. ," Bannon said in a statement to Axios. ( Bannon has denied that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government during the election .)

... ... ...

Though the Trump Tower meeting took place before Bannon joined the Trump campaign, Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House panel, told CNN last week that he plans to question Bannon about "why this meeting at Trump Tower represented his treason and certainly unpatriotic at a minimum."

Jared Kushner's "greasy shit"

Wolff also quotes the former White House strategist as saying, "This is all about money laundering. [Robert] Mueller chose [senior prosecutor Andrew] Weissmann first and he is a money-laundering guy. Their path to fucking Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr., and Jared Kushner . . . It's as plain as a hair on your face." (Trump Jr., Kushner, and Manafort have all denied wrongdoing.) Bannon then zeroed in on Kushner specifically, adding that "[i]t goes through Deutsche Bank and all the Kushner shit. The Kushner shit is greasy. They're going to go right through that. They're going to roll those two guys up and say play me or trade me."

He and Trump's son-in-law have never seen eye to eye; their White House feuds were a poorly kept secret, and following his ouster, Bannon has given numerous interviews knocking Kushner, including one to my colleague Gabriel Sherman in which he questioned Kushner's maturity level. If Bannon has dirt on Kushner, he will likely get his chance to reveal it; Schiff also declared his intent to question Bannon on "the basis of his concern over money laundering."