7:32 PM 10/16/2017 – The Profile Of Mass Shooter and The Neuro-Psychological (“Psychotronic”) Manipulation Of Voting Behaviors Online

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The Profile Of Mass Shooter and The Neuro-Psychological Manipulation Of Voting Behaviors Online

Active and purposeful manipulation of the voter’s psychology and mindsets online: the threat of the “psychotronic” weapons  | Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link

by Michael Novakhov

There is a hypothetical, implied link between these two seemingly unrelated phenomena which puts them in a single perspective. Sad, utilitarian, practical, and logical perspective. This hypothesis should be studied and tested, it seems to me. 

There are some more ominous and potentially the more dangerous aspects and possibilities in these “psychographic profiling” types of voter targeting and the selective, targeted advertising, as they were practiced by “Cambridge Analytica”. Especially if these practices were influenced by the Russian ideas or practices: not only tailoring the pre-election advertising according to the voters’ psychological profiles combined with the other data (keep in mind the recent massive hacks also), but:

Active and purposeful manipulation of voter’s psychology and mindsets: perceptions, associations, thinking, preferences, etc., online, in other words creating and maintaining “an emotional leash” to influence and to direct the voting behaviors, effectively producing the “voting robots”.

(“I’ve called it an emotional leash,” Woolley said…

“The benefit of this kind of data is that it allows data companies like Cambridge Analytica to develop more sophisticated psychological profiles of internet users (more data points means more predictive power)…

When you consider how a few thousands votes in a handful of swing states determined the election, this is no small thing…

This sounds like the sci-fi, but this approach was studied and researched by the Russians for a long time, especially in the security services and in the military intelligence. It is very much in vein with their traditional social concepts and practices. They even invented the special term for this: “psychotronic” techniques or weapons. 

“On September 16, 2013, Aaron Alexis fatally shot twelve people and injured three others in the Washington Navy Yard using a shotgun on which he had written “my ELF weapon”, before being killed by responding police officers.[10][11][12] The FBI federal law enforcement agency concluded that Alexis suffered from “delusional beliefs” that he was being “controlled or influenced by extremely low frequency electromagnetic waves”.[13]

“In 2012, Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin commented on plans to draft proposals for the development of psychotronic weapons.[24] NBC News Science Editor Alan Boyle dismissed notions that such weapons actually existed, saying, “there’s nothing in the comments from Putin and Serdyukov to suggest that the Russians are anywhere close to having psychotronic weapons.”[24]

This field is surrounded by secrecy and the deliberate disinformation. One of the researchers in this field was Igor Smirnov, who was quite a disturbed individual. I was personally acquainted with him, we studied in the same First Moscow Medical Institute. He was a son of infamous SMERSH (wartime military counter-intelligence) chief, Victor Abakumov, and apparently had extensive connections with the network of his father’s friends, even after his execution. I wrote about this before in my blogs. Dr. Smirnov was well known to the FBI and others for his assumed and not a very clear role in Waco siege.

The possibility of hostile or foreign online manipulations cannot be discounted and should be explored further. Another factor that contributes to these suspicions are the particulars of the provisional profile of mass shooter described by me earlier

  • The absence of any apparent or direct motive in most cases. 
  • Addiction to computing and/or video games (in Paddock’s case, video gambling, video poker), with possible influence (some kind of the sophisticated manipulation, or “prepping”, or “priming”) on the vulnerable and susceptible person’s mental and psychological functioning online (!!!) by the “psychotronic“, or similar, or other techniques, as a part of the package of studying and influencing the individual’s “online behavior”, including possibly for purposes of  manipulations of voting preferences and behavior (see also “Cambridge Analytica“), among the other purposes, more sinister and dangerous ones, as in mass/active shooting.
  • Human handler (the presence of the somewhat odd “significant other”, the “sphinx”), possibly used for the direct control (of which the handler might be completely unaware), corrections, and the directions of the targeted individual’s behavior. 
  • Taking the psychiatric medication, (Valium in the case of Paddock), or the overt, documented, or in some other ways, definitely present psychiatric or neuropsychiatric illness or condition, which makes the individual susceptible and vulnerable to online manipulations. 

See also: mass shooter psychological profile – GS

People with the mental illness or emotional disturbances, and also with the various types and degrees of intellectual deficiencies (who have and exercise their full voting rights) may be especially susceptible and vulnerable to these types of manipulations online. 

In my very humble opinion, the precepts and the practices of “Cambridge Analytica” should be the focus of intense attention by Mr. Mueller’s investigative team and should include also the forensic neuro-psychiatric evaluation of the effects of the targeted ads, specifically the video ads, and the specifics of the targeted populations. I have an inkling that their software and database packages might be of the Russian origin. They have to be examined ASAP. The samples of all the ads should be preserved for further studies. The social media companies should be prevented from the destruction of all ads in question if it is not too late. 

The hypothetical connection between the mass shooter profiling and the “psychographic profiling”, with its effects and practices, which is their common element, the cyber connection,  possibly the addiction to video games and the hypothetical susceptibility to the neuro-psychiatric manipulations online, should be addressed and researched further. The importance of this issue is difficult to overestimate. 

Michael Novakhov 

10.16.17   

Links 

9:52 AM 10/16/2017 Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained
Mon, 16 Oct 2017 13:54:41 +0000
Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained Monday October 16th, 2017 at 9:49 AM Vox – All 1 Share The Daily Beast reported last week that the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is looking into a data analytics company called Cambridge Analytica as part of its investigation into possible collusion between … Continue reading

Story image for Cambridge Analytica from Vox

Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump …

Vox10 hours ago
Cambridge Analytica specializes in what’s called “psychographic” profiling, meaning they use data collected online to create personality …

“Cambridge Analytica specializes in what’s called “psychographic” profiling, meaning they use data collected online to create personality profiles for voters. They then take that information and target individuals with specifically tailored content (more on this below)…

According to the Daily Beast report, congressional investigators believe that Russian hackers might have received help in their efforts to distribute “fake news” and other forms of misinformation during the 2016 campaign. Hence the focus on Cambridge Analytica…

Pro-Trump programmers “carefully adjusted the timing of content production during the debates, strategically colonized pro-Clinton hashtags, and then disabled activities after Election Day.”

…Trump’s campaign “was using 40-50,000 variants of ads every day that were continuously measuring responses and then adapting and evolving based on that response.”

These online ads were spread primarily through bots on social media platforms. The ads that got liked, shared, and retweeted the most were reproduced and redistributed based on where they were popular and who they appealed to.

The benefit of this kind of data is that it allows data companies like Cambridge Analytica to develop more sophisticated psychological profiles of internet users (more data points means more predictive power)…

When you consider how a few thousands votes in a handful of swing states determined the election, this is no small thing…

But we know that congressional and DOJ investigators believe that Trump’s campaign might have helped guide Russia’s voter targeting scheme and that Flynn, who worked for Trump’s campaign and with Cambridge Analytica, is suspected of having extensive ties with Russian operatives…

In a 2016 speech, Alexander Nix, the CEO of Cambridge Analytica, unfurled the company’s methodology: “We’ve rolled out a long-form quantitative instrument to probe the underlying traits that inform personality,” he proclaimed. “If you know the personality of the people you’re targeting, you can nuance your messaging to resonate more effectively with those key groups.” …

Cambridge Analytica has built models that translate the data they harvest into personality profiles for every American adult — Nix claims to have “somewhere close to 4 or 5 thousand data points on every adult in the US.”

Kosinski and his colleagues developed a model that linked subjects’ Facebook likes with their OCEAN scores. OCEAN refers to a questionnaire used by psychologists that describes personalities along five dimensions — openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism.

Cambridge Analytica has combined this social psychology with data analytics. They collect data from Facebook and Twitter (which is perfectly legal) and have purchased an array of other data — about television preferences, airline travel, shopping habits, church attendance, what books you buy, what magazines you subscribe to — from third-party organizations and so-called data brokers.

They take all this information and use it for what Nix calls “behavioral microtargeting” — basically individualized advertising.

Instead of tailoring ads according to demographics, they use psychometrics.

The success of this approach hinges on the accuracy of the company’s psychological profiles. But how much can they know about someone’s psyche on the basis of a few tweets or likes? Quite a lot, apparently…

Combine this kind of predictive power with an army of bots and you’ve got a potent propaganda tool. As Woolley told me, “One person controlling a thousand bot accounts is able to not just affect the people in their immediate circle but also potentially the algorithm of the site on which their operating.”

Bots are even more effective, as they’re able to react instantly to trending topics on Twitter and Facebook, producing targeted posts, images, and even YouTube videos.

“I’ve called it an emotional leash,” Woolley said…

We don’t know if the data produced by Cambridge Analytica ever found its way to Russians. And if it did, we don’t know for sure how it got there or how much it helped or if the company was aware of it…

One thing we do know is that data companies like Cambridge Analytica have changed things. Facebook is already under fire for allowing Russia to manipulate its algorithms during the 2016 election. And we’ve likely just scratched the surface in terms of how state actors are able to weaponize information online. The role of companies like Cambridge Analytica in these efforts remains something of a mystery, however…

But if the ongoing investigations conclude that the Trump campaign did help Russia target voters, expect to hear more about Cambridge Analytica.

It’s entirely possible that such collusion could have occurred and the work of Cambridge Analytica had nothing to do with it; however, that would be strange, since targeting voters is precisely what the company was hired to do.”

Data Firm Says ‘Secret Sauce’ Aided Trump; Many Scoff – NYT

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But a dozen Republican consultants and former Trump campaign aides, along with current and former Cambridge employees, say the company’s ability to exploit personality profiles — “our secret sauce,” Mr. Nix once called it — is exaggerated.

Cambridge executives now concede that the company never used psychographics in the Trump campaign. The technology — prominently featured in the firm’s sales materials and in media reportsthat cast Cambridge as a master of the dark campaign arts — remains unproved, according to former employees and Republicans familiar with the firm’s work.

“They’ve got a lot of really smart people,” said Brent Seaborn, managing partner of TargetPoint, a rival business that also provided voter data to the Trump campaign. “But it’s not as easy as it looks to transition from being excellent at one thing and bringing it into politics. I think there’s a big question about whether we think psychographic profiling even works.”

At stake are not merely bragging rights, but also an emerging science that many believe could reshape American politics and commerce. Big data companies already know your age, income, favorite cereal and when you last voted. But the company that can perfect psychological targeting could offer far more potent tools: the ability to manipulate behavior by understanding how someone thinks and what he or she fears.

A voter deemed neurotic might be shown a gun-rights commercial featuring burglars breaking into a home, rather than a defense of the Second Amendment; political ads warning of the dangers posed by the Islamic State could be targeted directly at voters prone to anxiety, rather than wasted on those identified as optimistic.

“You can do things that you would not have dreamt of before,” said Alexander Polonsky, chief data scientist at Bloom, a consulting firm that offers “emotion analysis” of social networks and has worked with the center-right Republican Party in France.

“It goes beyond sharing information,” he added. “It’s sharing the thinking and the feeling behind this information, and that’s extremely powerful.”

Both conservatives and liberals are eager to harness that power. In Washington, some Democratic operatives are scrambling to develop personality-profiling capabilities of their own. But even as Cambridge seeks to expand its business among conservative groups, questions about its performance have soured many Republicans in Mr. Trump’s orbit.

Cambridge is no longer in contention to work for Mr. Trump at the Republican National Committee, a company spokesman confirmed, nor is it working for America First Policies, a new nonprofit formed to help advance the president’s agenda.

In recent months, the value of Cambridge’s technology has been debated by technology experts and in some media accounts. But Cambridge officials, in recent interviews, defended the company’s record during the 2016 election, saying its data analysis helped Mr. Trump energize critical support in the Rust Belt. Mr. Nix said the firm had conducted tens of thousands of polls for Mr. Trump, helping guide his message and identify issues that mattered to voters.

But when asked to name a single race where the firm’s flagship product had been critical to victory, Mr. Nix declined.

“We bake a cake, it’s got 10 ingredients in it. Psychographics is one of them,” he said. “It’s very difficult to isolate exactly what the impact of that ingredient is.”

Drawn to America

Cambridge’s parent company, the London-based Strategic Communication Laboratories Group, has a long record of trying to understand and influence behavior. Founded in 1993 by a former British adman, the firm has worked for companies and candidates around the world, as well as for government and military clients. SCL has studied Pakistani jihadists for the British government and provided intelligence assessments for American defense contractors in Iran, Libya and Syria, according to company documents obtained by The New York Times.

“Their approach was seen as serious and focused,” said Mark Laity, chief of strategic communications at NATO’s military headquarters in Europe, who has taken part in NATO-affiliated conferences where SCL has made presentations.

In recent years, the company has moved to exploit the revolution in big data to predict human behavior more precisely, working with scientists from the Cambridge University Psychometrics Center. The United States represented a critical new market. Europe has strict privacy protections that limit the use of personal information, but America is more lightly regulated, allowing the sale of huge troves of consumer data to any company or candidate who can afford them.

In 2013, Cambridge Analytica was created as SCL’s American operation, and the two companies today share many of their roughly 200 employees, several top executives, and offices in New York and Washington.

To develop its profiling system, Cambridge conducts detailed psychological surveys — by phone and online — of tens of thousands of people, differentiating them by five traits, a model widely used by behavioral researchers.

Uniquely, the company claims to be able to extrapolate those findings to millions of other people it has not surveyed, assigning them one of 32 distinct personality types. Cambridge then blends those profiles with commercial data and voting histories, revealing “hidden voter trends and behavioral triggers,” according to a 2016 company brochure.

Those profiles, in turn, would allow campaigns to customize advertising, direct-mail slogans and door-knocking scripts, each calibrated to prod the targeted voter toward — or away from — a candidate.

The promise of psychometrics appealed to Mr. Mercer, a computer scientist who made a fortune helping to lead Renaissance Technologies, a Long Island-based hedge fund. Mr. Mercer and his daughter Rebekah presided over a growing political empire that included millions of dollars in contributions to conservative groups and a stake in Breitbart, whose nationalist and racially antagonistic content prefigured Mr. Trump’s presidential campaign.

Mr. Mercer became Cambridge’s principal investor, according to two former employees. (Like several others interviewed for this article, they spoke on the condition of anonymity, citing nondisclosure agreements and the threat of lawsuits.) Mr. Bannon, the family’s political guru, also advised the company and served as vice president of its board, according to Delaware public records.

Mr. Mercer has never spoken publicly about his policy views in depth, but his giving is eclectic: He has financed anti-Clinton documentaries, right-wing media watchdogs, libertarian think tanks and both Senator Ted Cruz, a religious conservative, and Mr. Trump, a thrice-married nationalist.

“The genius here is Bob, and the billionaire in this is Bob, and the person with the extreme views of how the world should be is Bob,” said David Magerman, a Renaissance research scientist who was recently suspended after criticizing his boss’s support for Mr. Trump.

In the run-up to the 2014 elections, Breitbart, under Mr. Bannon, set up a London office and made common cause with populist conservatives in Europe. But back in the United States, Cambridge was at first slow to land big accounts. It was rebuffed by the political network overseen by the billionaire conservative brothers Charles G. and David H. Koch, to which the Mercers were major donors. Federal Election Commission records show that the firm had nine clients in House and Senate races that year, among them three “super PACs” partly financed by Mr. Mercer.

As the 2016 presidential campaign began, however, Cambridge landed a marquee political client: Mr. Cruz, the Texas senator. Mr. Mercer seeded a super PAC with $11 million to support him.

Cambridge had a talented salesman in Mr. Nix, an Eton-educated SCL director chosen to lead the American effort. Among colleagues, his skills at cajoling clients are legendary. At an office party at a London dog track in the summer of 2015, one young employee offered an affectionate toast.

“He is so smooth he’ll rub shoulders with politicians and their campaigns,” the employee joked, according to a video of the event posted on YouTube, “and, in their face, tell them he’s going to rip them off.”

‘Not About Tricking People’

But Cambridge’s psychographic models proved unreliable in the Cruz presidential campaign, according to Rick Tyler, a former Cruz aide, and another consultant involved in the campaign. In one early test, more than half the Oklahoma voters whom Cambridge had identified as Cruz supporters actually favored other candidates. The campaign stopped using Cambridge’s data entirely after the South Carolina primary.

“When they were hired, from the outset it didn’t strike me that they had a wide breadth of experience in the American political landscape,” Mr. Tyler said.

Ms. Mercer and Mr. Bannon were aggressive advocates for Cambridge. When the campaign disputed a $2.5 million invoice, they lit into Mr. Cruz’s senior campaign team during a conference call, according to the consultant. Cambridge Analytica, Ms. Mercer and Mr. Bannon claimed, was the only thing keeping Mr. Cruz afloat. (The company declined to comment on the exchange, as did a personal spokeswoman for Mr. Bannon and the Mercers.)

After the Cruz campaign flamed out, Mr. Nix persuaded Mr. Trump’s digital director, Brad Parscale, to try out the firm. Its data products were considered for Mr. Trump’s critical get-out-the-vote operation. But tests showed Cambridge’s data and models were slightly less effective than the existing Republican National Committee system, according to three former Trump campaign aides.

Mr. Bannon at one point agreed to expand the company’s role, according to the aides, authorizing Cambridge to oversee a $5 million purchase of television ads. But after some of them appeared on cable channels in Washington, D.C. — hardly an election battleground — Cambridge’s involvement in television targeting ended.

In postelection conversations with potential clients, Cambridge has promoted itself as the brains behind Mr. Trump’s upset victory. One brochure circulated to clients this year, which details Cambridge’s expertise in behavioral targeting, also calls the company’s “pivotal role” in electing Mr. Trump its “biggest success politically in the United States.”

Trump aides, though, said Cambridge had played a relatively modest role, providing personnel who worked alongside other analytics vendors on some early digital advertising and using conventional microtargeting techniques. Later in the campaign, Cambridge also helped set up Mr. Trump’s polling operation and build turnout models used to guide the candidate’s spending and travel schedule. None of those efforts involved psychographics.

In some recent public settings, Cambridge executives have acknowledged that. “I don’t want to break your heart; we actually didn’t do any psychographics with the Trump campaign,” Matt Oczkowski, Cambridge’s head of product, said at a postelection panel hosted by Google in December.

The firm’s claims about its client base have also shifted. As recently as October, the firm said it had 50 clients in the 2016 elections. But a company spokesman said federal elections records showing just a dozen were correct.

The spokesman also said neither Cambridge nor SCL had done any work, paid or unpaid, with the pro-“Brexit” Leave.eu campaign last year, although Mr. Nix once claimed that Cambridge had helped “supercharge” Leave.eu’s social media campaign. British authorities are now investigating the company’s exact role with Leave.eu and whether Cambridge’s techniques violated British and European privacy laws.

At a conference in Munich last month, Alexander Tayler, Cambridge’s chief data officer, dodged a question about whether Cambridge would work with far-right parties in European elections this year. He also played down the role of psychological profiling in the company’s work, much of which, Mr. Tayler suggested, is still based on traditional data analytics and marketing.

“It’s not about being sinister,” Mr. Tayler said. “It’s not about tricking people into voting for a candidate who they wouldn’t otherwise support. It’s just about making marketing more efficient.”

Looking to Expand

Even before the election, according to one former employee, Cambridge employees attended sessions about soliciting government business in the United States — where Mr. Trump now oversees the federal bureaucracy and Mr. Bannon is arguably the White House’s most powerful staff member. According to documents obtained by The Times, SCL is pursuing work for at least a dozen federal agencies, including the Commerce Department and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Mr. Bannon’s spokeswoman said he stepped down from the Cambridge board in August, when he joined the Trump campaign, and “has no financial involvement” with the firm currently. She declined to say whether Mr. Bannon previously held equity in the firm.

Late last month, SCL executives met with Pentagon officials who advise the Joint Chiefs of Staff on information warfare. A reference document submitted in advance of that meeting indicates that the company has worked as a subcontractor on roughly a dozen Pentagon projects, many of them “counter-radicalization” assessments in Pakistan and Yemen.

Such intelligence work is the bread and butter of SCL’s government contracting in other countries. And the firm’s experience in trying to influence Muslim sentiment abroad dovetails with Mr. Trump and Mr. Bannon’s focus on combating the Islamic State.

The Washington Post reported last month that SCL had secured a contract for a similar program at the State Department and was seeking military and Homeland Security work.

In an email, a Joint Chiefs spokesman confirmed that the Pentagon meeting, first reported by BuzzFeed, had occurred, but said he could not elaborate on the discussions “in order to avoid any undue influence or unintended consequences.”

The New York Times would like to hear from readers who want to share messages and materials with our journalists.

At the moment, according to former employees, Cambridge has relatively few well-known corporate clients in the United States. Among them are ECI New York, a clothing company, and Goldline, which sells gold coins and markets heavily to listeners of conservative talk radio.

A spokesman for MasterCard declined to say if it would do business with Cambridge. The Yankees did not sign on.

But Mr. Nix appears to have bigger ambitions. “I think were are on the cusp of something enormous,” he said.

Data science is about to reshape marketing, Mr. Nix maintained, and the big advertising conglomerates would survive only by developing their own targeting technology — or acquiring companies like Cambridge.

“Those agencies that don’t adapt will die,” Mr. Nix said.

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2:08 PM 10/16/2017 – RECENT POSTS

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Clinton on Putin: ‘Keep an eye on him, because he’s not done’
CNN
Washington (CNN) Hillary Clinton acknowledged that Russian President Vladimir Putin has notched some victories against the US and issued a warning that he still poses a significant threat. “Keep an eye on him, because he’s not done,” Clinton, the  
Donald Trump’s Twitter use is a risk to global security, Hillary Clinton saysThe Guardian
Julian Assange worked with Russia to help Donald Trump win elections, alleges Hillary ClintonScroll.in
‘The whole world should be concerned’: Hillary Clinton on Donald Trump’s presidencyThe New Daily
9news.com.auNew VisionThe Hill
all 81 
Clinton warns on Putin: ‘Keep an eye on him, he’s not done’The Hill
How Netanyahu Pulls Trump’s StringsConsortium News

all 214 news articles »

“*Donald Trump has become radioactive

“*Donald Trump has become radioactive

Donald Trump has become radioactive

This is stunning

“*Donald Trumps own people are now finishing him off

“*Donald Trumps own people are now finishing him off

Donald Trumps own people are now finishing him off

We’ve never seen anything like this

Donald Trump and WikiLeaks arent even trying to hide their collusion anymore

Investigators are still piecing together how the Donald Trump campaign and international cyberterrorist group WikiLeaks were communicating and coordinating their efforts during the course of the 2016 election. Although Trump’s longtime friend Roger Stone bragged that he was using backchannels to coordinate with WikiLeaks, the rest of the effort was a secret one. However, at this point, Trump and WikiLeaks are no longer even trying to hide it.

Last night Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks and a wanted fugitive who’s spent years hiding out in a basement closet, had an unhinged meltdown about Hillary Clinton. Assange posted a series of deranged tweets about Clinton’s “menacing glares” and far worse. It raised the question of whether perhaps Assange should be taken to a mental institution instead of a prison once he’s eventually apprehended. It was also one more reminder that WikiLeaks, the Russian government, and the Donald Trump campaign treasonously conspired to rig the election in in favor of Trump and against Clinton.

So how did Donald Trump handle Assange’s meltdown about Clinton? By joining in. Trump hadn’t tweeted about her in quite some time. Yet this morning he couldn’t wait to tweet “I was recently asked if Crooked Hillary Clinton is going to run in 2020? My answer was, ‘I hope so!’” It’s not a coincidence that Assange and Trump suddenly have the same message: they’re colluding as we speak to create a media distraction. They must know that a bombshell story is about to surface which helps expose their election rigging scheme, and they’re trying to force that bombshell to share some headline space with the Hillary controversy they’re manufacturing.

During the course of the 2016 election, Russian government hackers stole personal information from the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party. It then gave that information to Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, which often altered that information to appear scandalous. WikiLeaks coordinated with the Donald Trump campaign to release that (dis)information at the most opportune time for Trump. Everyone knows this. All that’s left is to prove it, so everyone involved can face charges.

The post Donald Trump and WikiLeaks aren’t even trying to hide their collusion anymore appeared first on Palmer Report.

Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena – The News Tribune


The Spokesman-Review
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena
The News Tribune
The dossier contends that Russia amassed compromising information about Trump and engaged in an effort to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election on his behalf. … Both panels are also investigating Russian meddling in theelection.
Dossier Firm’s Lawyers Accuse Devin Nunes Of ‘Unprofessional Conduct’TPM

all 12 news articles »

12:28 PM 10/16/2017 Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events

Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites) FBI News Review: 12:12 PM 10/16/2017 FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting Canada Free Press (blog) FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting Canada Free … Continue reading“12:28 PM 10/16/2017 – Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events”
12:36 PM 10/16/2017 Surveillance Reform: The Fourth Amendments Long, Slow, Goodbye

Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites) FBI News Review: 12:12 PM 10/16/2017 FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting Canada Free Press (blog) FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting Canada Free … Continue reading“12:36 PM 10/16/2017 – Surveillance Reform: The Fourth Amendments Long, Slow, Goodbye”
Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena – Bloomberg


Bloomberg
Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena
Bloomberg
Washington (AP) — A political research firm behind a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump’s connections toRussia is balking at subpoenas from the House intelligence committee. A lawyer for the firm questioned the legitimacy of the

and more »

Russia tried to use Pokemon Go to stoke racial tensions in the US – Fox News


Fox News
Russia tried to use Pokemon Go to stoke racial tensions in the US
Fox News
Russia’s meddling in U.S. politics and society ahead of the 2016 presidential election keeps getting weirder. The Kremlin-backed campaign of so-called fake news employed … The Don’t Shoot Us YouTube page, which is simply titled Don’t Shoot 

11:55 AM 10/16/2017 TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017

SYRIA The U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (S.D.F.) began their final push to oust Islamic State militants from Raqqa yesterday, marking the last phase to combat the militants in their de facto capital in Syria and after a significant number of militants surrendered as part of a locally brokered deal. John Davison and Ellen Francis report … Continue reading“11:55 AM 10/16/2017 – TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION – from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017”
12:03 PM 10/16/2017 How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election Axios

Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites) Trump – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News Fox News Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ Fox News President Trump tweeted Monday that he hopes Crooked … Continue reading“12:03 PM 10/16/2017 – How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios”
Inside the ‘adult day-care center’: How aides try to control and coerce Trump – Washington Post


Washington Post
Inside the ‘adult day-care center’: How aides try to control and coerce Trump
Washington Post
During the campaign, when President Trump’s advisers team wanted him to stop talking about a certain issue such as when he attacked a Gold Star military family they sometimes presented him with polls demonstrating how the controversy was harming his … 
The Note: Trump moves to break governing deadlock but can’t just go it aloneABC News
Juan Williams: Trump is becoming a failed presidentThe Hill
Trump team claims US families will receive extra $4000 a year from tax cutsThe Guardian

all 38 news articles » 

and more »

Trump allies worry that losing the House means impeachment – CNN


CNN
Trump allies worry that losing the House means impeachment
CNN
If Republicans forfeit the House, Democrats will almost certainly create a spectacle that will derail conservatives’ agenda and the remainder of Trump’s first term — a spectacle complete with a raft of new subpoenas, a spotlight on the Russia 
The Daily 202: Trump’s attacks on Senate Republicans are paying political dividendsWashington Post

all 85 news articles »

7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trumps America?

Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary Trumps supposed 2020 reelection effort may be even more fraudulent than previously known  »  10:59 AM 10/15/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Palmer Report »  Donald Trump: Further reading 16/10/17 01:12 from 1. Trump from mikenova (5 sites) Donald Trump Donald Trump further reading Monday October 16th, 2017 at 7:38 AM 1 Share   The Donald Trump Continue reading“7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trumps America?”
Dissident on Trump era: ‘China, Russia, they all laugh about it’ – The Hill (blog)


The Hill (blog)
Dissident on Trump era: ‘China, Russia, they all laugh about it’
The Hill (blog)
Chinese dissident and artist Ai Weiwei said in a new interview that China and Russia are laughing at the U.S. under PresidentTrump. Weiwei told Politico that the U.S. is in danger of losing the rights it’s known for under Trump. He also said the 

and more »

Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained – Vox


Vox
Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained
Vox
The Daily Beast reported last week that the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is looking into a data analytics company called Cambridge Analytica as part of its investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia 

and more »

9:02 AM 10/16/2017 Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton The Guardian

Saved Stories Trump Investigations Report Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian “*Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major … Continue reading“9:02 AM 10/16/2017 – Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian”
9:17 AM 10/16/2017 Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell

Posts on G+ from mikenova (1 sites) Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretary Trump’s supposed … Continue reading“9:17 AM 10/16/2017 – Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell”
Trump reportedly mocks Mike Pence’s ultraconservative views, once joking that he ‘wants to hang’ all gay people – Business Insider


Business Insider
Trump reportedly mocks Mike Pence’s ultraconservative views, once joking that he ‘wants to hang’ all gay people
Business Insider
Mayer cited a longtime Trump associate as saying the president liked to keep Pence in check. Mayer reported that Trumpoften mocked Pence’s conservative views, like his desire to see Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that established women’s …
Trump joked Pence ‘wants to hang’ all gay people, New Yorker reportsThe Hill
Even Trump Reportedly Thinks Mike Pence Is a Crazed Anti-LGBTQ ZealotSplinter (blog)

all 109 news articles »

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12:36 PM 10/16/2017 – Surveillance Reform: The Fourth Amendments Long, Slow, Goodbye

9/11

It was the invisible and probably more significant than the physical destruction: the attack on the American collective psyche, the soul of the people, on the society’s sense of invulnerability, stability, prosperity, and the purposeful, progressive direction. We deal with these sequelae of the country’s posttraumatic stress syndrome, in its various and still poorly understood manifestations every day, from personal to the governmental levels. The increased distrust and paranoia of the mass surveillance apparently made it only worse, and this approach does not appear to help in solving the problem. 

Michael Novakhov

10.16.17

Image: The NSA’s headquarters in Fort Meade, Maryland/Getty

“Sixteen years after creating the biggest unconstitutional mass surveillance dragnet in American history, we have documentary evidence—from the federal government’s own records—of repeated, systemic abuses of these authorities. We also know they’re costing taxpayers, whose digital communications are swept up by these programs, tens of millions of dollars annually. What we don’t have is any public evidence that these surveillance practices have made us safer.”  creating the biggest unconstitutional mass surveillance dragnet in American history, we have documentary evidence—from the federal government’s own records—of repeated, systemic abuses of these authorities. We also know they’re costing taxpayers, whose digital communications are swept up by these programs, tens of millions of dollars annually. What we don’t have is any public evidence that these surveillance practices have made us safer.” 

Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts

Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites)
FBI News Review: 12:12 PM 10/16/2017 FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting
Canada Free Press (blog) FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting Canada Free Press (blog) As a result, your [FOIA] request has been reopened (Surprisingly, the Trump Justice … The meeting occurred during the then-ongoing investigation of Mrs. Clinton’s email server, and mere hours before the Benghazi report was released publicly …FBI News Review

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Trump – from Huffington Post

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Donald Trump: Trump On Gays: Pence Wants To ‘Hang Them All’
A New Yorker article says Trump teases the socially conservative vice president about religion, abortion and gay rights.Donald Trump

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1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)
Trump Investigations Report: 12:03 PM 10/16/2017 How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election Axios
Trump Investigations Report: 11:55 AM 10/16/2017 TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
michael flynn – Google News: Ivanka Trump reportedly took over one of Chris Christie’s transition team meetings and asked Michael Flynn what job … – Business Insider
Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
Donald Trump – Google News: Newly Surfaced Video Reveals Donald Trump Boasting About Hiring ‘Beautiful’ Teenage Waitress – PEOPLE.com
1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites): Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV
trump as danger to National Security – Google News: Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)
Just Security: National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
analysis of trump electorate – Google News: The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
trump and putin – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV
Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV
putin and trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WSAZ-TV
Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: The Week That Will Be
FBI politicization – Google News: Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
michael flynn – Google News: Report: Trump Joked Pence ‘Wants to Hang’ Gays – Daily Beast
trump under federal investigation – Google News: Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour
Russian Intelligence services – Google News: Clinton calls Assange ‘a tool of Russian intelligence’ – Politico
Trump and the Mob – Google News: No, There’s No Excuse for ‘Conservative’ Shout-Downs – National Review
Just Security: Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events
organized crime and terrorism – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)
organized crime and intelligence – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)

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Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena – Bloomberg
Russia tried to use Pokemon Go to stoke racial tensions in the US – Fox News
Yahoo: Russian trolls watched ‘House of Cards’ to learn about US politics – CNN
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena – Washington Post
Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events
Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour
Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV
The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)
Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV
Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
11:55 AM 10/16/2017 TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
12:03 PM 10/16/2017 How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election Axios
What Melania Trump could learn from Monica Lewinsky – Chicago Tribune
Republican lawmakers’ troubles deepen as Koch donors and Bannon take aim – Los Angeles Times
Inside the ‘adult day-care center’: How aides try to control and coerce Trump – Washington Post
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops – TOLOnews
Trump allies worry that losing the House means impeachment – CNN
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops – TOLOnews
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch – Patheos (blog)

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1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)
Trump Investigations Report: 12:03 PM 10/16/2017 How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election Axios
Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites) Trump – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News Fox News Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ Fox News President Trump tweeted Monday that he hopes Crooked … Continue reading”12:03 PM 10/16/2017 – How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios”Trump Investigations Report
Trump Investigations Report: 11:55 AM 10/16/2017 TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
SYRIA The U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (S.D.F.) began their final push to oust Islamic State militants from Raqqa yesterday, marking the last phase to combat the militants in their de facto capital in Syria and after a significant number of militants surrendered as part of a locally brokered deal. John Davison and Ellen Francis report … Continue reading”11:55 AM 10/16/2017 – TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION – from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017″Trump Investigations Report
michael flynn – Google News: Ivanka Trump reportedly took over one of Chris Christie’s transition team meetings and asked Michael Flynn what job … – Business Insider

Business Insider
Ivanka Trump reportedly took over one of Chris Christie’s transition team meetings and asked Michael Flynnwhat job …
Business Insider
Ivanka Trump once “took over” one of Chris Christie’s transition team meetings last fall and essentially told Michael Flynn that he could have whatever job he wanted because of his “amazing loyalty” to her father, President Donald Trump, The New Yorker …

michael flynn – Google News

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
Last week on our Foreign Policy feed, we wrote about how the USA Liberty Act, which is the House Judiciary Committee’s proposal to reauthorize the Section 702 surveillance program, takes for granted that a “clean reauthorization” is impossible and imposes reforms for the sake of reform. The piece begins:What happens when you start with panicky civil libertarians, sprinkle in some right-wing conspiracy theories about unmasking intelligence, and polish it off with a healthy dose of congressional dysfunction and a self-imposed legislative deadline? You get bad surveillance policy in the name of reform. Dont look now, but thats whats shaping up in Congress at this moment.

In a little less than three months, Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which authorizes the government to monitor, without an individualized warrant, the communications of non-U.S. persons reasonably believed to be overseas is set to expire. Section 702 is a very big deal; it cannot be allowed to expire for any length of time without real damage to ongoing intelligence operations. So the closer we get to the sunset, the more opportunity there is to include mischievous reforms that the intelligence community simply has to accept everyone knows the intelligence community would rather take some very bitter pills than lose a program it needs to accomplish its mission.

Last week, the House Judiciary Committee introduced legislation to reauthorize the 702 authority, but it included a number of changes including a few that are quite significant. No, this bill isnt the worst thing in the world. The sky isnt falling. And plenty of other proposals to reform 702 would inflict far more serious harms than this one would. But its not a good bill either. It would make the FBIs job harder for no good reason. It responds to imagined risks, rather than real abuses.

The Judiciary Committee bill is the product of an endeavor that was flawed from the outset. Its drafters were operating from the apparent premise that while 702 is a critical national security authority that must be preserved, a clean reauthorization of it without changes is currently a political impossibility. Why is that? Liberals and civil libertarians have always had anxieties about 702. Libertarian conservatives and tea party types have more recently joined the fray. Over the last year, the fraudulent unmasking controversy most of which has nothing to do with 702 has stoked these anxieties. And lots of people have instinctive difficulty vesting powerful authorities in the hands of the intelligence community under President Donald Trump. The House Judiciary Committee is one of the Houses more polarized committees, so the apparent goal was to thread the needles and draft a bipartisan bill that might satisfy calls for reform while minimizing operational impacts. And if it passes the Judiciary Committee, the bill has a good chance to become law.

If you accept the premise that precluded a clean reauthorization, the committees bill is a decent though far from perfect effort.

We dont accept the premise, however, but start with a different one: This is an already dense and complicated area of law in which it is tough for national security operators to do their jobs. To make it denser and more complicated, you need a reason. Reform for reforms sake is not a good enough reason to add complexity.

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices

Donald Trump – Google News: Newly Surfaced Video Reveals Donald Trump Boasting About Hiring ‘Beautiful’ Teenage Waitress – PEOPLE.com

PEOPLE.com
Newly Surfaced Video Reveals Donald Trump Boasting About Hiring ‘Beautiful’ Teenage Waitress
PEOPLE.com
A newly uncovered video of Donald Trump from before he was president shows the former businessman bragging about hiring a teenage waitress just because she was so pretty. In the footage unearthed by NowThis, Trump is shown lecturing at a seminar, …
Donald Trump’s Campaign Is Being Subpoenaed for All Documents Related to Sexual-Assault ClaimsGQ Magazine
Donald Trump Campaign Subpoenaed By Former ‘Apprentice’ Contestant In Defamation SuitDeadline
Trump campaign subpoenaed over sexual assault allegationsCNN
Glamour –BuzzFeed News –The Independent
all 64 news articles »

Donald Trump – Google News

1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites): Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV

WILX-TV
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands
WILX-TV
The White House said that in South Korea, Trump will meet with President Moon Jae-in and “call on the international community to join together in maximizing pressure on North Korea.” In Japan, Trump will meet with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and 
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US electionAxios
Vladimir Putin’s bored — life is too easyUPI.com
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?The Conversation US
Express.co.uk
all 31 news articles »

Putin Trump – Google News

1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites)

trump as danger to National Security – Google News: Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)

The Independent (blog)
Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq
The Independent (blog)
But the language that Mr Trump is using is dangerous, just as the language he is using about North Korea is verydangerous, things can get out of control. And we have a situation where Trump is refusing to accept what the UN is saying that Iran is and more »

trump as danger to National Security – Google News

Just Security: National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
Just Security

Tuesday, October 17

10:00am Senate Committee of the Judiciary Nominations: Gregory G. Katsas to be United States Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia Circuit; Jeffrey Uhlman Beaverstock to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of Alabama; Emily Coody Marks to be United States District Judge for the Middle District of Alabama; Brett Joseph Talley to be United States District Judge for the Middle District of Alabama; Holly Lou Teeter to be United States District Judge for the District of Kansas (here)

2:30pm Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Nomination of Christopher Sharpley to be Inspector General of the Central Intelligence Agency (here)

Wednesday, October 18

10:00am Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Nominations: Jeff T.H. Pon to be Director of the Office of Personnel Management; Michael J. Rigas to be Deputy Director of the Office of Personnel Management; Emily W. Murphy to be Administrator of the General Services Administration (here)

10:00am Senate Committee of the Judiciary Oversight of the U.S. Department of Justice (here)

2:30pm Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Nominations: Mr. Thomas L. Carter of South Carolina for the Rank of Ambassador during his Tenure of Service as Representative of the United States of America on the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization; Ms. Jennifer Gillian Newstead of New York to be Legal Adviser of the Department of State; Ms. Manisha Singh of Florida to be an Assistant Secretary Of State (Economic And Business Affairs) (here)

2:30pm Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Federal Spending Oversight and Emergency Management Subcommittee Broken Beakers: Federal Support for Research (here)

 

Thursday, October 19

9:30am Senate Committee on Armed Services Roles and Responsibilities for Defending the Nation from Cyber Attack (here)

10:30am Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Modernizing the Food for Peace Program (here)

Read on Just Security »

Just Security

analysis of trump electorate – Google News: The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
The apprentice president
Emporia Gazette
A New York Times analysis concludes that Trump and his heirs would enjoy a $1.1 billion windfall under his tax plan. Fairy dust has infected the administration’s … “Donald Trump got elected with minority support from the American electorate, and most and more »

analysis of trump electorate – Google News

trump and putin – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV

KXII-TV
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands
KXII-TV
The White House said that in South Korea, Trump will meet with President Moon Jae-in and “call on the international community to join together in maximizing pressure on North Korea.” In Japan, Trump will meet with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and and more »

trump and putin – Google News

Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV

KXII-TV
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands
KXII-TV
The White House said that in South Korea, Trump will meet with President Moon Jae-in and “call on the international community to join together in maximizing pressure on North Korea.” In Japan, Trump will meet with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and 
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US electionAxios
Vladimir Putin’s bored — life is too easyUPI.com
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?The Conversation US
Express.co.uk –Gears Of Biz
all 31 news articles »

Putin Trump – Google News

putin and trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WSAZ-TV

WSAZ-TV
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands
WSAZ-TV
The White House said that in South Korea, Trump will meet with President Moon Jae-in and “call on the international community to join together in maximizing pressure on North Korea.” In Japan, Trump will meet with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and 
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US electionAxios
Vladimir Putin’s bored — life is too easyUPI.com
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?Midland Daily News
Express.co.uk –Gears Of Biz
all 31 news articles »

putin and trump – Google News

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: The Week That Will Be
Event Announcements (More details on the Events Calendar)Tuesday, October 17 at 10:00 am: The New America Foundation will hold an event with the American Bar Associations Standing Committee on Law and National Security and Pitt Cyber titled Old Laws and New Technology: How Can We Keep Up? Former U.S. Attorney Paul Hickton will give the keynote address. A panel featuring Paul Cohen, Harvey Rishikof, Ian Wallace, and Kiersten Todt will follow. RSVP.

Tuesday, October 17 at 3:30 pm: The Georgetown Laws Center on National Security and the Law will host an event on Unpacking the Trump-Russia Investigations. Carol Bruce, Mieke Eoyang, Adam Entous and M. Tia Johnson will take part in a panel discussion. RSVP here and see more details here.

Wednesday, October 18 at 10:00 am: The Center for Strategic and International Studies will host a book talk on Lawrence Freedmans The Future of War: A History. Kathleen Hicks and Mark Moyar will discuss the book with Freedman. Register or watch the live webcast.

Wednesday, October 18 at 10:00 am: Attorney General Jeff Sessions will testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee at a Department of Justice oversight hearing. Location: Hart Senate Office Building 216. More details hereLawfare will post a livestream of the hearing.

Thursday, October 19 at 4:30 pm: Lawfare and the Brookings Institution will host a screening of the documentary Icarus followed by a discussion on What Icarus Tells Us about Russias Meddling in International Affairs. Director Bryan Fogel will join a panel with producer Dan Cogan, Benjamin Wittes, Strobe Talbott, and Julia Ioffe. Register to attend.

 

Employment Announcements (More details on the Job Board)

 

Cyber Initiative and Special Projects Fellow, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is seeking a Cyber Initiative and Special Projects Fellow, a three-year fixed term position, to be based in Menlo Park, California.

About the Foundation

The Hewlett Foundation is a nonpartisan, private charitable foundation that advances ideas and supports institutions to promote a better world. For 50 years, the foundation has supported efforts to advance education for all, preserve the environment, improve lives and livelihood in developing countries, promote the health and economic well-being of women, support vibrant performing arts, strengthen Bay Area communities, and make the philanthropy sector more effective. The Hewlett Foundations assets are more than $9 billion with annual awards of grants totaling more than $400 million. More information about the Hewlett Foundation is available at: www.hewlett.org.

About the Position

As the job title suggests, the Cyber Initiative and Special Projects Program Fellow will play an integral role in two distinct grantmaking efforts housed in the foundation Presidents office.

The fellow will work closely with the Program Officer for The Cyber Initiative, who will provide the fellow with direction on the Initiatives grantmaking activities. Launched in March 2014, the goal of the Initiative (and its $70 million grantmaking budget) is to build a capable field of cyber policy experts and expertise. The Cyber Initiative takes a broad view of cyber policy to include issues ranging from encryption to net neutrality to Internet governance to cyber conflict. Moreover, the 2016 election dramatically raised awareness about cybersecurity and democratic institutionshighlighting new needs, but also creating new opportunities.

Working directly with Foundation President, Larry Kramer, the fellow will help shape and implement grantmaking for the Special Projects portfolio. Special Projects grants are diverse ranging from support for public broadcasting to exploration of artificial intelligence and the future of work — sometimes ad hoc, and require nimble and thoughtful attention to detail and execution. They strive to promote internal collaboration between different foundation programs, external collaboration with other funders, and/or discrete opportunities outside of the foundations core interest areas.

This position presents a unique opportunity to engage in both the strategic and tactical aspects of grantmaking under the Cyber Initiative and Special Projects program. As such, the fellow must be comfortable working across a changing and evolving landscape of work and juggling multiple projects at the same time.

The broad goals and responsibilities for the fellow are:

  • Partner with the Cyber Initiative team to implement the Initiatives strategy, evaluate potential grantees, suggest new grant awards to the Foundation president and board, and manage its grants portfolio.
  • Work with the Cyber Initiative team to evaluate the effectiveness of its grantmaking, monitor its progress, and recommend strategy improvements.
  • Work with the foundation president to plan and execute Special Projects grants.
  • Manage the Special Projects budget, tracking all active and planned grants and other funding commitments.
  • Manage relationships and communications with grantees and serve as their primary point of contact.
  • Represent the foundation at meetings with key stakeholders from civil society, government, the private sector, and academia.
  • Attend and represent the foundation at external events, including speaking on panels.
  • Follow the cyber policy debate globally, stay abreast of trends and developments, and identify new opportunities for the foundations grant-making.
  • Travel to conduct site visits and attend conferences.

Professional Qualifications and Personal Attributes

Candidates should exhibit the following professional qualifications and personal attributes:

Professional Experience:

  • An undergraduate or advanced degree as appropriate in law, policy, business, computer science, engineering, or related disciplines (preferred).
  • Demonstrated interest and work experience in areas relevant to the Cyber Initiative.
  • Excellent research and critical thinking skills and ability to conceptualize, think creatively, and thoughtfully approach assigned projects.
  • Demonstrated capability to process and present complex information (both quantitative and qualitative) in a compelling manner both orally and in writing.
  • Proficiency with technology tools and applications including MS Office.
  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills.
  • Willingness and interest in work travel to conduct site visits and participate in relevant conferences and meetings.

Personal Attributes:

  • Possess an open-minded curiosity and willingness to carry out both substantive and administrative tasks.
  • Passionate commitment to the values and mission of the Hewlett Foundation.
  • Poise and comfort representing the foundation externally and engaging a diverse array of partner organizations.
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to pay attention to details, along with a demonstrated track record of consistently meeting deadlines.
  • Independent initiative, a sense of humor, and a collegial spirit in sharing ideas and receiving feedback. Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively.
  • Personal integrity, excellent judgment and flexibility.
  • Outstanding communication and interpersonal skills.

Compensation

Compensation for the Fellow, Presidents Office includes a competitive salary, and an excellent package of health and other employee benefits.

Physical Demands/Work Environment

The physical demands described are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this position, the employee is regularly required to sit for extended periods of time and to travel via various modes of transportation for extended periods of time.

To Apply:

Interested candidates should submit a resume and cover letter responding specifically to the experience and qualifications being sought to: Daniel Sherman, President, Explore Company at resumes@explorecompany.com. Refer to Hewlett/SPF in the subject line. No phone inquiries please.

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and invites individuals who bring a diversity of culture, experience and ideas to apply.

All correspondence will remain confidential.

Legal Intern – International Humanitarian Law (Spring and Summer 2018), The International Committee of the Red Cross

FUNCTION DESCRIPTION

Intern International Humanitarian Law

OBJECTIVE:  The Intern in the IHL Department at the Washington Regional Delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) provides research and writing on topics of IHL, other branches of international law, and U.S. law as needed, thus contributing to the thematic and operational priorities of the legal team.

Minimum required knowledge & experience:

  • Basic knowledge of IHL and a related legal field (e.g. National Security or Human Rights Law).
  • Excellent oral and written English skills, good understanding of French an asset
  • Currently pursuing a U.S. J.D. or LLM degree (or JD graduate pursuing another graduate degree)
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents (student work permits are excluded)

JOB DESCRIPTION

Main Responsibilities

Work with the IHL team to provide legal advice to the delegation in Washington, and to the ICRC as a whole on matters of IHL, human rights law, national security law, or other U.S. legal issues.

  1. Research and Writing. Research such topics as scope of application of IHL, detention, conduct of hostilities, cyber/new technology and weapons, and other related topics.  Possibility of authoring articles or other short pieces for the ICRCs U.S. blog (intercrossblog.icrc.org).
  2. Monitor Legal Developments Regular monitoring of legal blogs and news coverage to identify significant legal developments of interest to the delegation.  In addition to research, the intern will attend conferences and meetings in order to monitor developments on specific legal issues on behalf of the legal team.
  3. Reporting. Regular and timely reporting and analysis on meetings and events attended, as well as a weekly report on any relevant legal developments reported in external sources such as legal blogs.  Reports are written for the purpose of ensuring the institution is informed of developments in U.S. policy, as well as to advance its thinking on key issues.

Management and Reporting Line. The IHL Intern reports directly to the IHL Legal Advisor.  He/she is expected to collaborate with colleagues throughout the delegation in order to carry out these and other reasonably related duties.

For the spring semster, the intern will be expected to work 20 hours a week for 12 weeks between January and May. For the summer, the intern will be expected to work 40 hours a week for 12 weeks between May and August. Starting and ending date are negotiable.  This is a paid internship.  For information about the position, please contact Andrea Harrison at anharrison@icrc.org.  To apply, please send CV and optional cover letter to Mackenzie Chernushin at mchernushin@icrc.org. Applications are due October 31, 2017.

Congressional Nuclear Security Fellowship, Nuclear Security Working Group at the George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs

The Nuclear Security Working Group at the George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs is seeking applications for its 2018-2019 Congressional Nuclear Security Fellowship program.

Fellows will spend one year (January 2018 January 2019) working in a designated House or Senate office. Stipends range from $45,000 to $80,000 depending on qualifications. We will award up to six Fellowships this year.

Fellows duties will include supporting the priorities and activities of House and Senate offices and organizing bipartisan briefings and events on timely national and nuclear security issues for Members and staff. Fellows will also help develop relationships with the broader security policy community for their respective offices.

This is an excellent opportunity for promising scholars and policy practitioners who may be transitioning to mid-career or for any outstanding professional seeking to contribute to and gain valuable experience in the legislative branch.

Details about eligibility requirements and instructions about how to apply are available on the NSWG website at this link: http://nuclearsecurityworkinggroup.org/nuclear-security-working-group-congressional-fellowship-now-accepting-applications/.

Please help us circulate this information about this important opportunity to your friends and colleagues. We much appreciate your help in identifying and encouraging exceptional candidates.

Applications will be accepted until October 31, 2017. Finalists will be interviews in person. Fellows must be ready to begin work by early January 2018 and must be willing to commit for a full calendar year.

Any questions should be directed to nswg@email.gwu.edu.

Markle Director for Policy (Rework America Task Force)

Background

A defining challenge of our time is ensuring that all Americans are included in the benefits of the digital economy as automation and technology transform the workforce in unprecedented fashion. After more than a decade of work in health and national security, the Markle Foundation created Skillful, an initiative with LinkedIn, the state of Colorado and others to create a skills-based labor market. Launched in 2016, Skillful is centered on the skills job seekers have, not the degrees. Skillful is enabling Americans, including the nearly seven out of 10 American adults who do not have a college degree, to learn the skills needed for todays rapidly changing jobs. To learn more see www.Skillful.com.

Building on Skillfuls progress, Markles Rework America Task Force will be a national-level, non-partisan and multi-stakeholder effort to drive clear policy objectives and initiatives to support a skills-based labor market. It will serve as an incubator for fresh ideas, new collaborations, shovel-ready proposals and proliferation of best practices including leveraging data to bring transparency to the labor market. Ideas from the task force will be offered to help inform the actions of federal and state policymakers, employers, technology providers and other influential labor market players. We intend for the Task Force to engage in and support the much-needed broad-based, long-term national conversation about how the technological revolution can serve all Americans in the new economy.

Job Summary and Responsibilities

The Director for Policy will be responsible for providing the Rework America Task Force chair, Task Force members and associated Working Groups with substantive guidance and policy advice surrounding U.S. labor market trends, related impacts of automation and technological advancements, workforce management, worker education and upskilling, and employer matching with needed skilled labor. The incumbent will drive deliverables from the Task Force that will support the Task Force mission of enabling all Americans continued access to the American Dream. The principal responsibilities include:

  • Participate in developing the substantive underpinnings for Task Force objectives. Prepare materials, engage experts, supervise work product development and deliverables.
  • Provide advice and assistance to the RATF Chair, in the form of written products, research, articles for publication and RATF meeting materials, as directed.
  • Provide policy expertise and substantive direction to RATF Working Groups, guiding their outputs consistent with the goals of the RATF generally and the RATF Chair, specifically.
  • Conduct outreach to experts, policymakers, and other relevant actors to inform RATF objectives and outcomes.
  • Support preparation for the Task Force meetings and those of its associated Advisory Board.
  • Collaborate with Task Force staff and contractors as necessary to ensure appropriate subject matter expertise is available to Task Force members and Working Groups.
  • Support the development of materials and deliverables for multiple convenings both in person and virtually in terms of timeliness milestones, interdependencies and other elements.
  • Identify opportunities for the Task Force to engage in the national debate surrounding the future of work and ways to incentivize change in the U.S. labor market.

Required Competencies

  • Substantive knowledge of workforce, labor market and related national-level policy issues
  • Possesses strong organization skills, with ability to multitask and manage several work streams, partners / vendors, and projects at any one time
  • Writing: Demonstrated ability to write clearly and concisely for a variety of audiences.
  • Active learner: Positive attitude with an openness and willingness to learn. Demonstrates ability to receive and apply feedback and continues to improve.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills: Emanates a collaborative demeanor that builds rapport and establishes credibility with partners. Applies critical interpersonal and judgment skills to affect outcomes. Has complete comfort and confidence in offering helpful advice and counsel to colleagues at all levels. Is a team player.
  • Communication skills: Demonstrated ability to clearly convey summary data from multiple sources as a set of findings. Comfortable speaking in public settings.

Preferred Competencies:

  • General professional experience: 10-20 years of working experience
  • Experience in leading multi-sector collaborative processes including development of specific, actionable recommendations, such as policy proposal, pilot projects, impact assessments, etc.
  • Displays an intellectual curiosity and passion for the mission at hand.
  • Analytics experience: Ability to summarize detailed data, identify trends, and draw insights from the data. Able to make recommendations based on conclusions.
  • Demonstrated ability to thrive and lead in a small, analytically rigorous organization that values direct, honest, and respectful transfer of ideas.
  • Entrepreneurial mindset: Possesses a natural instinct to seek out the next challenge and think outside constraints and get things done. Operates with a clear sense of purpose while being comfortable with ambiguity and change.

Job Details

  • Location: New York, NY or Washington, D.C.
  • Title: Director
  • Report: Senior Principal
  • Status: Full-time
  • Salary: Competitive
  • Travel: Moderate
  • Degree or credential Requirements:  None.
  • Markle is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.  All applicants receive consideration for employment without regard to race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender expression age, physical or mental ability, veteran status, military obligations and marital status.
  • Applying: Please submit cover letter and resume to: DirPolicy-RATF@markle.org

Markle

The Rework America Task Force and Skillful are projects of the Markle Foundation (www.markle.org), whose mission is to identify intractable problems, invest seed capital to incubate and test solutions, harness the power of technology and innovation, and build strategic partnerships to achieve scale and generate broad social impact. While Markles work has evolved through the years, its mission to meet the needs of the American people has endured. Currently, Markle is engaged in a nationwide initiative aimed at driving innovations that expand opportunities for employment and broaden ways for all Americans to learn and train for the work of the future.

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices

FBI politicization – Google News: Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy
The Ledger
Perhaps the most famous case in the past two decades is the Patriot Act. Shortly after 9/11, congress implemented and passed the Patriot Act. This act allowed three-letter agencies such as the NSA or the FBI to expand their power and ability to

FBI politicization – Google News

michael flynn – Google News: Report: Trump Joked Pence ‘Wants to Hang’ Gays – Daily Beast

Daily Beast
Report: Trump Joked Pence ‘Wants to Hang’ Gays
Daily Beast
Michael Flynn into a meeting being run by then-transition leader Chris Christie. According to Mayer, Christie tried to reclaim control of the meeting, but Ivanka took over. Praising Flynn’s ‘amazing loyalty to my father,’ she turned to him and asked and more »

michael flynn – Google News

trump under federal investigation – Google News: Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour

PBS NewsHour
Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers
PBS NewsHour
In 2013, federal investigators obtained a warrant under a 1986 law for emails from an account they believe was being used in illegal drug transactions as well as identifying information about the user of the email account. Microsoft turned over the 
Justices to Hear Government’s Email Dispute With MicrosoftU.S. News & World Report
Supreme Court to consider major digital privacy case on Microsoft email storageWashington Postall 34 news articles »

trump under federal investigation – Google News

Russian Intelligence services – Google News: Clinton calls Assange ‘a tool of Russian intelligence’ – Politico

CNN
Clinton calls Assange ‘a tool of Russian intelligence’
Politico
WikiLeaks has come under fired from the intelligence community and drawn the scrutiny of ongoing congressional probes into 2016 Russian election interference. CIA Director Mike Pompeo called WikiLeaks a “hostile intelligence service” and former FBI …
Clinton brands WikiLeaks boss ‘tool of Russian intelligenceMiami Herald
Assange hits back at ‘cold and creepy’ Clinton9news.com.au
Hillary Clinton says Julian Assange colluded with Russia to help Donald Trump win US election – Donald Trump’s …ABC
The Guardian –The Guardian –Twitter
all 115 news articles »

Russian Intelligence services – Google News

Trump and the Mob – Google News: No, There’s No Excuse for ‘Conservative’ Shout-Downs – National Review

National Review
No, There’s No Excuse for ‘Conservative’ Shout-Downs
National Review
As Stanley Kurtz noted on Friday, pro-Trump protesters shouted-down California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and California State Assembly Leader Ian Calderon during an appearance at California’s Whittier College. This is a terrible development. Thus and more »

Trump and the Mob – Google News

Just Security: Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events
Artin Afkhami

Did President Donald Trump or other U.S. officials engage in an obstruction of justice with respect to the Russia investigation? There are three scenarios which raise that question. Its important to keep each of them in mind as one thinks about incriminating and exculpatory information, and patterns of related behavior.

Before setting out each scenario and then the Timeline, it may bear reminding that under U.S. federal criminal law, the definition of obstruction of justice includes anyone who corruptly or by any threatening letter or communication endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede a criminal investigation. According to the U.S. Attorneys Manual, even a mere attempt to pursue those ends is enough for obstruction, regardless of whether the attempt succeeds. The criminal standard matters if prosecutors were ever to consider pressing charges while Trump is President (a period in which he may be immune from indictment) or after he leaves office. The federal definition could also serve as a background for impeachment proceedings, although Congress would not be tied to the strict definitions of existing criminal law. Finally, there is always the court of public opinion.

What are the three scenarios that prosecutors, members of Congress, and the public could consider under the heading of obstruction of justice?

First, any attempts to unlawfully have FBI Director James Comey drop the investigation of Michael Flynn Second, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with FBI or congressional investigations into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials during the 2016 election Third, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with the FBI or congressional investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election (having nothing to do with any alleged collusion)It is also important to keep in mind that one form of obstruction may be in getting officials to drop an investigation (which is very difficult to ever pick back up) and another form may be in firing officials with authority over the investigation.

The following is a Timeline of events that could be relevant to considerations of the obstruction of justice. It adheres as much as possible to the most directly relevant information, but also includes some other evidence that may be relevant to investigators who are looking for patterns of behavior (for example, Trumps treatment of Preet Bharara).

Timeline

Late July 2016 According to the New York Times and later confirmed by former FBI Director James Comey, the FBI begins investigating the Russian governments attempts to interfere with the 2016 U.S. election. The investigation includes examining whether Donald Trumps presidential campaign was connected to those efforts. The catalyst for the FBI investigation includes Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Pages trip to Moscow to deliver a pro-Russia foreign policy speech at a prestigious Russian institute that same month.

Dec. 29, 2016 In retaliation for Russian interference in the election, the Obama administration ordersthe expulsion of Russian intelligence agents and imposes new sanctions on Russian state agencies and individuals suspected of hacking U.S. computer systems. The CIA and FBI had previously concluded that Russia had interfered in the election multiple times including leaking damaging information to assist the Trump campaign.

Jan. 6, 2017 According to Senate testimony by James Comey, he first meets Trump at Trump Tower on this date as part of an Intelligence Community assessment briefing on Russian election interference. After the meeting ends, Comey meets with Trump privately and assures Trump he is not beingpersonally investigated. He writes a memo about the meeting after he returns to his car. Later testifying to Congress Comey says, I was honestly concerned that he might lie about the nature of our meeting, and so I thought it really important to document.

Jan. 6, 2017 The New York Times reports that the IC concluded in its assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a campaign to influence the outcome of the 2016 election, initially seeking to weaken Hillary Clinton, but later developing a clear preference for Trump. The Times reports that at the IC assessment meeting earlier that morning, Trump responded by acknowledging, for the first time, that Russia had sought to hack into the Democratic National Committees computer systems,but asserted that these activities did not influence the elections outcome, and he did not address the IC conclusion that Putin had favored his campaign.

Jan. 19, 2017 The New York Times first reports that U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies are conducting a counterintelligence investigation into links between Russian officials and Trump associates. The investigation centers partly on past business dealings between Trump advisers and Russia. The FBI is leading the investigation, alongside the CIA, NSA, and the Treasury Departments financial crimes unit. The associates under investigation include former campaign manager Paul Manafort and advisers Carter Page and Roger Stone.

Jan. 27, 2017 According to Comeys testimony, Trump invites Comey to what he believes will be a group dinner at the White House, but which turns out to be a private dinner meeting with the then-FBI Director. Trump asks whether Comey wants to remain FBI Director, and Comey responds affirmatively. During the dinner, Trump repeatedly tells Comey that he needs loyalty, and Comey responds, You will always get honesty from me. Trump responds, Thats what I want, honest loyalty. Comey responds, You will get that from me, hoping to end the conversation. Comey later testifies to Congress that, given the one-on-one nature of the meeting and the substance of their talk, Comey believed the dinner was in part an effort to create a patronage relationship.

Feb. 13, 2017 National Security Advisor Michael Flynn resigns after revelations that he misled Vice President Mike Pence and other administration officials about a conversation with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in December 2017 about U.S. sanctions against Russia.

Feb. 14, 2017 According to Comeys Senate testimony, Comey and other IC leaders deliver a counter-terrorism briefing at the Oval Office. Trump signals the end of the briefing by thanking everyone and saying he wanted to meet with Comey privately. Trump tells Comey, I want to talk about Mike Flynn, adding that Flynn had not done anything wrong, but had to resign because he misled Pence. Trump then tells Comey, I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go. Comey later testifies that he had understood the President to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn in connection with false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December.

Immediately after the meeting, Comey prepared a memo of the communication and presented the issue to FBI senior leadership. Comey interpreted Trumps communication as a direction to drop the FBI investigation as it related to Flynns alleged false statements about his meetings with the Russian Ambassador in December 2016.

The FBI leadership team and Comey believed that it was important not to infect the investigative team with Trumps request, and decided to refuse the directive. The team concluded it would not have made sense to disclose Trumps request to Sessions, who had recused himself from the Russia investigation, or the Deputy AG, who was soon to be replaced. They believed it was best to keep the communication closely held, although they might decide to disclose it to other officials as the investigation progressed.

Shortly thereafter, Comey also met with Sessions and told him that what had just happened   him being asked to leave while the FBI Director, who reports to the AG, remained behind was inappropriate and should never happen. He said he implored Sessions to ensure that no further private communications occur between Trump and himself. Nevertheless, he did not disclose the content of Trumps request regarding dropping the Flynn investigation.

In his written statement for the Senate, Comey said the Attorney General did not reply and then told Senators in open session that Sessions was just kind of looking at me and his body language gave me a sense like, What am I going to do?

In his own testimony before the Senate, Sessions said Comeys account was incorrect and said, I did affirm the long-standing written policies of the Department of Justice concerning communications with the White House.

Mar. 2, 2017 Sessions announces that he is recusing himself from any investigations into charges that Russia meddled in the 2016 election. Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente takes over the Russia investigation following Sessions recusal.

Mar. 9, 2017 Trumps assistant calls U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bhararas office and leaves a message asking Bharara to call Trump back. Trumps direct communication request violates protocols governing presidential contact with federal prosecutors. Bharara notifies an adviser to AG Sessions of the presidential contact, and tells him he will not respond because of the protocol violation. Bharara then calls Trumps assistant to say that he cannot speak with the president directly because of the protocol violation.

Mar. 10, 2017 Trump orders Bharara and 46 other U.S. Attorneys appointed by Barack Obama to resign. The request surprises Bhararas office because in November, he had met with Trump and advisers including Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner at Trump Tower, and Trump had personally asked him to stay in the position. Bharara publicly refuses to resign.

Mar. 11, 2017 Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente calls Bharara and tells him that he is one of the 46 U.S. Attorneys being asked to resign. Bharara tells him that he is interpreting that as being fired, and Boente repeats that he is being asked to resign.

Bharara tweets that afternoon that he has just been fired by Trump:

I did not resign. Moments ago I was fired. Being the US Attorney in SDNY will forever be the greatest honor of my professional life.

— Preet Bharara (@PreetBharara) March 11, 2017

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Because Bharara served as U.S. attorney of the S.D.N.Y., his jurisdiction included Trump Tower, and he would likely have known whether Trump Tower had been wiretapped by federal investigators as Trump claimed, as well as other Tower-related information potentially relevant to the Russia investigation, or to any other investigations involving the finances or other activities of Trump and his companies.

Mar. 20, 2017 In testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, Comey confirms that the FBI is investigating whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election. He also dismisses Trumps claims that President Obama wiretapped him during the presidential campaign.

Mar. 22, 2017 The Washington Post reports that Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and other senior officials participate in an Oval Office briefing, after which Trump asks Coats and CIA Director Mike Pompeo to stay for a private meeting. Trump complains to them about Comeys handling of the Russia investigation and asks them to intervene with Comey to get the FBI to stop investigating Flynn.

After the meeting, Coats discusses Trumps request with other officials and decides that against Trumps requests to issue a public statement and to intervene with Comey regarding Flynn, believing both would be inappropriate.

A day or two after Mar. 22, 2017 Shortly after the Mar. 22 meeting, Trump reportedly makes separate telephone calls to both Coats and NSA Director Adm. Michael Rogers and requests that they issue public statements denying the existence of any evidence of collusion between Trump officials and the Russian government. Both officials view the requests as inappropriate and refuse.

Then Deputy Director of the NSA Richard Ledgett writes an internal NSA memo documenting Trumps conversation with Rogers. During the call, Trump questions the accuracy of the IC Assessment that Russia had interfered with the election, in addition to trying to convince Rogers to issue a public statement.

In addition to Trumps requests, senior White House officials separately requested that top intelligence officials consider the possibility of intervening with Comey directly to have the FBI withdraw its probe of Flynn. Their lines of questioning included: Can we ask him to shut down the investigation? Are you able to assist in this matter?

Mar. 30, 2017 According to Comeys Senate testimony, on this date, Trump calls Comey at his office and tells Comey that the Russia investigation is a cloud inhibiting his ability to act as President. Trump assures Comey that he has had nothing to do with Russia and asks Comey what he can do to lift the cloud. Comey responds that the FBI is investigating the matter as quickly as it can, and that a full investigation is in Trumps best interests.

Trump then asks about why Comey had confirmed the FBI investigation into coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign at a Congressional hearing, and Comey explains that he was responding to Congressional leaders demands. Comey explains that he has briefed those leaders on who exactly the FBI is investigating and informed them that Trump is not personally under investigation. Trump repeatedly urges Comey to get the fact that he himself is not under investigation out to the public.

Comey later testifies to the Senate that the FBI and DOJ were reluctant to make a public statement that they did not have an open case on Trump for a number of reasons, most importantly because it would create a duty to correct, should that change.

Mar. 30, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Mike Flynn has informed the FBI and congressional officials of his willingness to be interviewed by House and Senate investigators as part of the investigation into Trump campaign ties to Russia, in exchange for immunity from prosecution. Flynns lawyer released a statement confirming only that discussions with Congressional investigators were taking place, though it concluded: no reasonable person, who has the benefit of advice from counsel, would submit to questioning in such a highly politicized, witch-hunt environment without assurances against unfair prosecution. The New York Times reports that congressional officials are unwilling to make a deal with Flynn until they are further along in their inquiries and have a better idea of the information Flynn might offer.

Mar. 31, 2017 Trump applauds Flynns request for immunity, tweeting:

Mike Flynn should ask for immunity in that this is a witch hunt (excuse for big election loss), by media & Dems, of historic proportion!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 31, 2017

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Apr. 11, 2017 According to Comeys testimonyTrump calls Comey again and asks what he has done about Trumps request to publicize the fact that he is not personally under investigation. Comey tells Trump that he relayed Trumps request to Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente but that he has not heard back. Trump reiterates that the cloud is interfering with his ability to act as President, and asks whether he should have his staff contact Boente. Comey advises Trump of the traditional channel, which is for White House Counsel to contact DOJ leadership to make such requests. Trump says he will do so and tells Comey, Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.Comey responds by reiterating that the proper channel for Trumps request is for Trump to follow the DOJ chain of command. Trump agrees and ends the call.

Comey testifies that in light of Trumps requests, Our our absolute primary concern was, we cant infect the investigative team. We dont want the agents and analysts working on this to know the president of the United States has has asked and when it comes from the president, I took it as a direction to get rid of this investigation, because were not going to follow that that request.

Apr. 25, 2017 Rod Rosenstein is confirmed as Deputy AG by the Senate and will serve as the official overseeing the Russia investigation in light of Sessions recusal. Rosenstein told Senators he would handle it the way I would handle any investigation, adding: I dont know the details of what, if any, investigation is ongoing, but I can certainly assure you if its America against Russia, or America against any other country, I think everyone in this room knows which side Im on.

May 8, 2017 According to the New York Times, Trump summons VP Pence, his chief of staff, top lawyers, and other senior advisors to the Oval Office and informs them that he plans to get rid of Comey, showing them an at least four-page letter, singe-spaced consisting of a long-running series of thoughts on why Comey should be fired that Trump dictated to aide Stephen Miller. The draft criticizes Comey for failing to publicly disclose that Trump was not personally under investigation and for his handling of both the Russia and Clinton email investigations.

White House Counsel Donald McGahn opposes the letter as problematic in multiple ways. His objections include the letters angry tone and its references to private conversations between Trump and Comey. He successfully convinces Trump not to use the draft. Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein then composes his own letter, which becomes a central part of the administrations public rationale for the removal. The New York Times reports that Mr. Sessions had been charged with coming up with reasons to fire him, according to administration officials.

May 8, 2017 Trump implicitly accuses former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates of leaking classified information in a tweet. Because Yates was scheduled to testify on the Flynn investigation before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee later in May, and because she had previously warned the White House that Flynn might have been compromised, this tweet could provide supporting evidence for an attempt to intimidate a witness in the Flynn investigation.

Ask Sally Yates, under oath, if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. Counsel.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 8, 2017

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May 9, 2017 Trump fires Comey from his post as FBI Director, removing the nations top law enforcement official while he was leading a criminal investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government to influence the 2016 election as well as an investigation into former NSA Adviser Michael Flynn for potentially making a false statement to the FBI. The firing raised questions about political interference in an ongoing criminal investigation that could implicate Trump and his top advisers.

In the official announcement, Trump cites letters written by AG Sessions and DAG Rosenstein that recommend [Comeys] dismissal, adding that he has accepted their recommendation and therefore is terminating Comey. The letters largely deal with the Clinton email investigation, and Trump also publicly cites Comeys handling of the Clinton investigation in announcing the change. However, Trumps letter also references the Russia investigation and Comeys actions toward Trump personally: While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the Bureau.

Of the two letters Trump cites, Sessions brief letter does recommend Comeys dismissal, and cites the reasoning in Rosensteins letter. Rosensteins letter, however, does not explicitly recommend dismissal; instead, it only outlines Comeys serious mistakes in handling the Clinton e-mail investigation. It concludes that the FBI will be unlikely to regain public trust until a new Director is put in place. White House officials say that Sessions and Rosenstein pushed for Comeys removal, but observers in Washington, including veteran former FBI agents, view the letters as pretextual.

May 9, 2017 ABC News reports that Rosenstein was so upset that he was on the verge of resigning because of Trumps public statements, and statements by White House officials, that Trump was acting on Rosensteins recommendation in firing Comey. Rosenstein tells the Sinclair Broadcast Group: No, I’m not quitting.

May 9, 2017 Late that night, the White House announces that Trump will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey V. Lavrov in the Oval Office the next day.

May 10, 2017 Trump meets with Lavrov and Ambassador Kislyak in the Oval Office and speaks to them about the Russia investigation and Comeys firing. He reportedly tells the senior Russian officials: I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut jobI faced great pressure because of Russia. Thats taken offIm not under investigation.

According to the Times, Press Secretary Sean Spicer did not dispute the account. Instead, he claimed in a statement that: By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russias actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia. Spicer adds, The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it. Once again, the real story is that our national security has been undermined by the leaking of private and highly classified conversations.

May 11, 2017 In an interview with NBC Newss Lester Holt, Trump admits that even before he consulted Rosenstein, I was going to fire Comey. Theres no good time to do it, by the way. Holt mentions that in Trumps letter outlining the reasons for Comeys firing, he cited Rosensteins letter, and Trump responds, Oh, I was going to fire regardless of recommendation.

Then, while addressing how he would have fired Comey regardless, he adds: And in fact when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have wonThis was an excuse for having lost an election.

When Holt asks him about whether he was angry with Comey because of the FBIs Russia investigation, Trumps responds that he never tried to pressure Comey to drop it. He adds: Maybe I’ll expand that, you know, lengthen the time (of the Russia probe) because it should be over with, in my opinion, should have been over with a long time ago. ‘Cause all it is, is an excuse but I said to myself, I might even lengthen out the investigation, but I have to do the right thing for the American people. He added, I want that to be so strong and so good. And I want it to happen.”

May 12, 2017 Trump tweets, James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations, suggesting Trump may have recorded such tapes, and may decide to release them. The tweet follows a New York Times report the day prior describing the dinner between Trump and Comey at which Trump asked Comey for a pledge of loyalty.

James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 12, 2017

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The Times reports that both the president and his spokesman refused to confirm or deny whether Trump tapes his conversations with visitors. When asked about whether such tapes existed by a Fox News host later that day, Trump reiterated: That I cant talk about. I wont talk about itAll I want is for Comey to be honest. Spokesman Sean Spicer, when asked, would not give a definitive response, saying only, The president has nothing further to add on that. Spicer further denied that Trump was threatening Comey, saying Thats not a threatHe simply stated a fact. The tweet speaks for itself. Im moving on.

May 17, 2017 Rosenstein appoints former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to serve as the DOJs Special Counsel to investigate Russian interference in the election and possible coordination between Trump associates and Russia.

Trump responds by saying, a thorough investigation will confirm what we already know there was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity. I look forward to this matter concluding quickly. In the meantime, I will never stop fighting for the people and the issues that matter most to the future of our country.

However, Trump decries the decision on Twitter:

This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special counsel appointed!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel appointed!; This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!

May 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump berated Sessions in an Oval Office meeting and told him he should resign, shortly after learning of the appointment of a Special Counsel to investigate links between the Trump campaign and Russia. Trump accuses Sessions of disloyalty and then launches into a series of insults against Sessions. Sessions became emotional and told Trump he would quit, and then drafted and sent a resignation letter to the White House. The Times reports that Sessions would later tell colleagues that Trumps dressing down was the most humiliating experience he had ever had in public life.

Trump eventually rejects the resignation in May after senior administration officials argue that it would only create more problems for him. But the Times also reports that he wished to remove Sessions again in July, though he did not act on it at that time. The Times reports that Trump believes the moment Sessions recused himself is the moment Trump lost control over the Russia investigation.

This dressing down represents the low point in the relationship between Trump and Sessions, a Senator who broke ranks with fellow Senators to become one of Trumps first supporters. The Timesreports that their relationship would marginally improve over time, partly because of Sessions taking a strong public stance against leakers later on.

May 18, 2017 Rosenstein testifies before a closed-door Senate briefing that he knew Trump wanted to fire Comey before he wrote his letter justifying Comeys removal.  Rosenstein adds that Trump asked him to write the letter. He tells Senators that on May 8 he knew that Trump was planning to fire Comey.

June 6, 2017 Washington Post reporter Robert Costa reports on NBC News that The President is expected to be Tweeting on Thursday in response to Comey not to stay quiet during the testimony because he himself wants to be the one driving the process.

Costa later tweets:

I’m told by two WH sources that Pres. Trump does not plan to put down Twitter on Thursday. May live tweet if he feels the need to respond.

— Robert Costa (@costareports) June 6, 2017

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June 7, 2017 DNI Coats and NSA Director Rogers both refuse to testify about their personal interactions with Trump and whether Trump asked them to intervene in the Russia investigation at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing.

Coats tells the Committee, I dont believe its appropriate for me to address that in a public session, when asked about whether Trump requested he intervene in the Russia investigation. Coats adds, however: But I am more than willing to sit before this committee during its investigative process in a closed session and answer your questions. Roger says, I am not going to discuss the specifics of interactions that I may or may have not had with the President.

Both men deny being pressured to intervene. Coats says, I have never felt pressure to intervene or interfere in any way and shape — with shaping intelligence, in a political way or in relationship to an ongoing investigation. Rogers tells the Committee, To the best of my recollection, I have never been directed to do anything I believe to be illegal, immoral, unethical or inappropriate.

June 8, 2017 Trumps personal lawyer Marc Kasowitz responds to Comeys testimony  claiming Comey admitted that he unilaterally and surreptitiously made unauthorized disclosures to the press of privileged communications with the President.

However, legal experts say that the executive privilege could not have been implicated by Comeys memos, because executive privilege functions as a shield against compelled rather than voluntary disclosure, and in any case, the leaks did not disclose any classified information or break any laws, since they dealt solely with private interactions with the President (the kind of internal communications of which many insider books are written).

June 16, 2017 Trump attacks Deputy AG Rosenstein on Twitter:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 22, 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump officially announces that he does not have taped recordings of his conversations with James Comey, citing Trumps tweet:

With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea…

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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…whether there are “tapes” or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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The Times report notes that Trumps tweet leaves open the possibility that others may have recorded their conversations, potentially without permission, such as the Intelligence Community generally or FBI in particular.

The Times report notes that legal experts have said Trumps initial tweet threatening that tapes existed could serve as part of a potential obstruction of justice case, because the tweet could be construed as pressuring Comey not to reveal details about his and Trumps conversations relating to the Russia investigation to federal investigators. Others say the threat of existence of tapes suggest Trump was trying to keep Comey honest.

June 16, 2017 Trump attacks Rosenstein and the expanding Russia probe in a series of tweets:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 23, 2017 In a Fox television interview, in response to a Fox interviewer suggesting that the possibility of recordings of Comeys conversations with Trump may have ensured Comeys honesty in his Senate testimony, Trump says: Well, it wasnt very stupid, I can tell you that. He added that in response to the possibility of Comeys conversations being recorded, I think his story may have changed.

July 8, 2017 The New York Times reports that Donald Trump Jr. arranged a meeting at Trump Tower with a Kremlin-linked Russian lawyer in June 2016, shortly after his father won the Republican nomination. Campaign manager Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner also attended. Though Trump Jr. initially releases a statement saying the meeting was primarily about an adoption program, emailsreleased later show meeting occurred because Trump Jr. was promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton by the Russian lawyer.

Trump personally dictates a statement for Trump Jr., stating that he and the Russian lawyer primarily discussed a program about the adoption of Russian children, and that the subject of the meeting was not a campaign issue at the time. These claims are later proven to be false. Before the revelation of the presidents involvement in these deliberations, Trumps lawyer repeatedly denied Trump was involved in drafting them. Eventually, the White House confirms that Trump weighed in on the drafting of the misleading statement.

July 10, 2017 Trump tweets that Comey illegally leaked classified information to the media:

James Comey leaked CLASSIFIED INFORMATION to the media. That is so illegal!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 10, 2017

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July 19, 2017 In an interview with the New York Times, Trump says that had he known Sessions was going to recuse himself from the Russia investigation, he would not have nominated him to be Attorney General:

TRUMP: Look, Sessions gets the job. Right after he gets the job, he recuses himself.

BAKER: Was that a mistake?

TRUMP: Well, Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job, and I would have picked somebody else.

Trump repeats that he relied on the Rosenstein letter in deciding to fire Comey:

TRUMP: [] Rosenstein becomes extremely angry because of Comeys Wednesday press conference, where he said that he would do the same thing he did a year ago with Hillary Clinton, and Rosenstein became extremely angry at that because, as a prosecutor, he knows that Comey did the wrong thing. Totally wrong thing. And he gives me a letter, O.K., he gives me a letter about Comey. And by the way, that was a tough letter, O.K. Now, perhaps I would have fired Comey anyway, and it certainly didnt hurt to have the letter, O.K.

Trump asserts again that Comey leaked confidential information in his Senate testimony, and oddly suggests that, in their initial meeting, Comey told Trump to treat Flynn good (when Comey testified that Trump had asked him to let go of the Flynn investigation):

TRUMP: Comey also says that he did something in order to get the special prose special counsel. He leaked. The reason he leaked. So, he illegally leaked.

TRUMP: So think of this. [NYT reporter] Mike [L. Schmidt]. He illegally leaks, and everyone thinks it is illegal, and by the way, it looks like its classified and all that stuff. So he got not a smart guy he got tricked into that, because they didnt even ask him that question. They asked him another question, O.K.?

________

TRUMP: He said I said hope I hope you can treat Flynn good or something like that. I didnt say anything.

Later in the interview, Trump contends that Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe has a conflict of interest involving Hillary Clinton. Days later, he repeats his claim on Twitter:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Why didn’t A.G. Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, a Comey friend who was in charge of Clinton investigation but got….

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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…big dollars ($700,000) for his wife’s political run from Hillary Clinton and her representatives. Drain the Swamp!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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Jill McCabe, McCabes wife, received nearly $500,000 in 2015 campaign donations from a political action committee associated with Va. Gov. Terry McAuliffe during an unsuccessful Virginia Senate run. McAuliffe is close with both Bill and Hillary Clinton.

July 24, 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump aide and son-in-law Jared Kushner meet with Senate investigators looking into the Russia investigation on the Senate Intelligence Committee. After meeting with investigators behind closed doors, Kushner released a statement to news media: All of my actions were proper and occurred in the normal course of events of a very unique campaignI did not collude with Russians, nor do I know of anyone in the campaign who did. He is the first member of the Trump inner circle to confer with congressional investigators.

July 2425, 2017 In a series of early morning tweets, Trump renews his attacks against Sessions.

So why aren’t the Committees and investigators, and of course our beleaguered A.G., looking into Crooked Hillarys crimes & Russia relations?

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 24, 2017

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a VERY weak position on Hillary Clinton crimes (where are E-mails & DNC server) & Intel leakers!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump campaign – “quietly working to boost Clinton.” So where is the investigation A.G. @seanhannity

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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He also repeated his claims regarding McCabe having a conflict of interest with respect to the Clintons:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Aug. 1, 2017 In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump again berates Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation:

WSJ: Hes the Russian guy. So Sessions has recused himself, but is Bob Muellers job safe? There is speculation

TRUMP: No, were going to see. I mean, I have no comment yet, because its too early. But well see. Were going to see. Heres the good news: I was never involved with Russia. There was nobody in the campaign. Ive got 200 people that will say that theyve never seen anybody on the campaign. Heres another he was involved early. Theres nobody on the campaign that saw anybody from Russia. We had nothing to do with Russia. They lost an election and they came up with this as an excuse. And the only ones that are laughing are the Democrats and the Russians. Theyre the only ones that are laughing. And if Jeff Sessions didnt recuse himself, we wouldnt even be talking about this subject.

And Trump further suggests that Sessions early campaign endorsement was not a sign of loyalty:

WSJ: Just on Sessions, just one thing. Would you like to see him step aside? Would you like to see him resign? Would it be in the countrys best interest just

TRUMP: Im just very disappointed in him. Im disappointed in, you know, a number of categories. I told you, the leakers. He should have he should be after them. So many people say to me: Why are they going after you on nothing and they leave Hillary Clinton alone on, you know, really major things? And it is so Im disappointed in him. And dont forget, when they say he endorsed me, I went to Alabama. I had 40,000 people, you may have been there, remember, in Mobile?

WSJ: I remember.

TRUMP: I had 40,000 people. He was the senator from Alabama. I won the state by a lot, massive numbers. A lot of the states I won by massive numbers. But he was a senator. He looks at 40,000 people and he probably says, what do I have to lose, and he endorsed me. So its not like a great, loyal thing about the endorsement. But Im very disappointed in Jeff Sessions.

Aug. 3, 2017 Vox reports that, in late May, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe told several people in high-level FBI management that they should consider themselves potential witnesses in any potential obstruction of justice investigation involving Trump. He told colleagues that he could also be a potential witness himself.

Aug. 26, 2017 The Washington Post reports that sometime this past spring, Trump approached AG Sessions and asked whether the DOJ could possibly drop its case against former Maricopa County, Arizona Sherriff Joe Arpaio, whom Trump has long respected. Sessions advised him that it would have been inappropriate to drop the case, after which Trump decided to let the case go to trial and subsequently grant a pardon. Legal experts believe that Trumps handling of the Arpaio case may be relevant to determining his intent in speaking to Comey about the FBIs Michael Flynn investigation (I hope you can let this go) in an obstruction of justice probe.

Aug. 31, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Trumps lawyers have met with Mueller several times in recent months and have submitted several memos to him contending that Trump didnt obstruct justice by firing Comey and questioning Comeys reliability as a potential witness.

Sept. 19, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Muellers office interviewed DAG Rosenstein in June or July 2017 about Trumps removal of Comey. A source told CNN that Rosenstein has no current plans to recuse himself from the investigation, suggesting he does not view himself as a key witness in the obstruction of justice investigation. DOJ Spokesperson Ian Prior released a statement saying, As the deputy attorney general has said numerous times, if there comes a time when he needs to recuse, he will. However, nothing has changed.

[Editor’s Note: For more analysis, readers may be interested in: “A Round-Up of Just Securitys Obstruction of Justice Coverage”]

Read on Just Security »

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organized crime and terrorism – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)

Global Risk Insights (blog)
ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem
Global Risk Insights (blog)
For instance, on 13 September, an Improved Database System was launched for ASEAN National Police (ASEANAPOL) in order to improve connectivity and information exchange regarding terrorism and organized crime. While the web-based system was …and more »

organized crime and terrorism – Google News

organized crime and intelligence – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)

Global Risk Insights (blog)
ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem
Global Risk Insights (blog)
For instance, on 13 September, an Improved Database System was launched for ASEAN National Police (ASEANAPOL) in order to improve connectivity and information exchange regarding terrorism and organized crime. While the web-based system was launched in and more »

organized crime and intelligence – Google News

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Surveillance Reform: The Fourth Amendments Long, Slow, Goodbye
Patrick Eddington

Over 16 years after the 9/11 attacks and the subsequent repeated passage or renewal of draconian temporary but emergency domestic surveillance laws in response, its fair to ask: Have we officially abandoned the Fourth Amendment in the Bill of Rights?

With the expiration of Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act (FAA) less than three months away, now is a good time to review the effects of these surveillance laws in the seemingly endless War on Terror. But first, a quick recap of Americas embrace of mass surveillance in the post-9/11 era.

Within six weeks of the terrorist attacks in 2001, and with virtually no serious debate, Congress passed the behemoth PATRIOT Act. The law created vast new government surveillance powers that abandoned the Fourth Amendments across-the-board probable cause warrant requirement. In an October 11, 2001 speech discussing the Senate version of the legislation, Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) assured terrified civil libertarians that the PATRIOT Acts five-year sunset clause governing 15 of the bills provisions would serve as a valuable check on the potential abuse of the new powers granted in the bill.

Unbeknownst to the public and most members of Congress, the Bush administration allowed key authorities of the PATRIOT Act to be abused, a fact only brought to light in 2013 by Edward Snowdens revelations of mass telephone surveillance conducted under Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act.

Section 215 is one of the 15 temporary provisions that has been renewed repeatedly since 2001, making a mockery of Feinsteins assurance that the sunset provision would act as a check on any abuse of the law. Today, 12 of those 15 temporary and emergency surveillance measures are permanent law.

Thanks to another document made public by Snowden, we know that three days after the 9/11 attacks, then-NSA Director Michael Hayden initiated a secret warrantless surveillance program encompassing Americans in contact with anyone in Afghanistan. Over the ensuing weeks, it would become a multi-pronged warrantless spying effort code-named STELLAR WIND. After the New York Times revealed this unconstitutional surveillance in December 2005,  thanks to the help of a whistleblower at the Justice Department, the Congress and the Bush administration spent the next two years trying to make the illegal surveillance legal. Their final product, passed in 2008, was the FAArenewed with little debate in 2012 and now, because of a sunset provision, is set to expire on December 31.

The key provision of the FAA that is the primary focus of debate is Section 702, which allows the government to target the communications of foreign entities even if the government knows it will likely sweep up the emails, text messages, and phone calls of innocent Americans in the process.

Have FAAs authorities been used to subvert the Fourth Amendment and the constitutional rights of Americans, just as the PATRIOT Act has? Yes. Repeatedly.

In September, the politically progressive group Demand Progress issued a scathing report on documented abuses of the FAA, drawing directly from partially declassified Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) records. The findings showed that aspects of the governments Section 702 information collection, revealed in 2011, acquired “non-targeted, entirely domestic communications,” violating the Fourth Amendment. Indeed, the FISC found that the NSA engaged for 12 years in types of surveillance that FISC would eventually deem unlawful, with NSA only ceasing the violations under repeatedbut ultimately emptythreats of criminal sanctions.

This report was preceded earlier this year by the publication of Stanford law professor (and Just Security editor) Jennifer Granicks excellent book American Spies, which chronicles in detail the rights violations and false claims of effectiveness of the PATRIOT Act and the FAA by NSA and FBI officials.

Sixteen years after creating the biggest unconstitutional mass surveillance dragnet in American history, we have documentary evidencefrom the federal governments own recordsof repeated, systemic abuses of these authorities. We also know theyre costing taxpayers, whose digital communications are swept up by these programs, tens of millions of dollars annually. What we dont have is any public evidence that these surveillance practices have made us safer.

Whats the response of Congress? Its proposing to reauthorize the same Section 702 program, which has led to these abuses.

On Oct. 6, on a bipartisan basis, the House Judiciary Committee introduced the ill-named USA Liberty Act (HR 3989). In my initial analysis of the bill, I noted that the proposed legislation ignored every major problem highlighted in the Demand Progress report. The bills authors also ignored an even longer list of Section 702 reform proposals put forward by nearly 60 civil society groups.

Meanwhile, the Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, NSA Director Adm. Mike Rogers, and FBI Director Christopher Wray have mounted a public campaign to renew Section 702 unchanged. At a meeting with reporters on Sept. 25, Coats and his colleagues argued that 702 is a vital surveillance authority that has helped thwart numerous terrorist plots. On background, I asked one of the reporters who attended that meeting whether Coats, Rogers, or Wray offered a single example of 702 stopping an attack on the United States. They did notwhich tracks with Granicks findings in American Spies.

Despite the lack of public, independently confirmed evidence that 702 has prevented terrorist attacks on America, Coats, Rogers, and Wray are winning the argument that 702 should remain the law of the land.

If you think about it, the indifference of the House Judiciary Committee leadership to these proposals is not terribly surprising. The overwhelming majority of the groups calling for changes to a surveillance law that should never have existed have no political power.

Unlike the National Rifle Association, they operate no political action committee or similar electoral vehicle that could be used to strike fear into House or Senate members who dare to put forward such proposals. Thus, House and Senate members know that they can safely ignore these groups, no matter how many press releases, Facebook posts, or completely fact-based reports about surveillance abuses they churn out–just as they have ignored these same groups for nearly 20 years as Congress has passed or reauthorized laws that, bit by bit, have eviscerated the Fourth Amendment.

My prediction: Absent another Snowden-like revelation, Section 702 of the FAA will be reauthorized largely without change, and any changes will be cosmetic, and almost certainly abused. Whether it has a sunset provision or not is now politically and practically meaningless.

After this latest assault on the Bill of Rights has been signed into law by President Donald Trump later this year or early next, opponents will have one moreand probably finalchance to roll back the damage already done when the three remaining PATRIOT Act provisions subject to sunset come due at the end of 2019. Unless the privacy and civil liberties community revamps its entire approach and structure for advocacy on these issues, the long, slow goodbye to the Fourth Amendment will come to an end just before Christmas in 2019.

Image: The NSA’s headquarters in Fort Meade, Maryland/Getty Read on Just Security »

Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena – Bloomberg

Bloomberg
Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena
Bloomberg
Washington (AP) — A political research firm behind a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump’s connections toRussia is balking at subpoenas from the House intelligence committee. A lawyer for the firm questioned the legitimacy of theand more »
Russia tried to use Pokemon Go to stoke racial tensions in the US – Fox News

Fox News
Russia tried to use Pokemon Go to stoke racial tensions in the US
Fox News
Russia’s meddling in U.S. politics and society ahead of the 2016 presidential election keeps getting weirder. The Kremlin-backed campaign of so-called fake news employed … The Don’t Shoot Us YouTube page, which is simply titled Don’t Shoot 
Yahoo: Russian trolls watched ‘House of Cards’ to learn about US politics – CNN

CNN
Yahoo: Russian trolls watched ‘House of Cards’ to learn about US politics
CNN
He was referring to a story he wrote, published on Sunday, in which an interview broadcast in Russian with a former member of the troll factory revealed the Russians were part of President Vladimir Putin’s campaign to influence the 2016 election.
Russian internet trolls were ordered to watch ‘House of Cards’ before 2016 election attack: reportRaw Story
Employee reveals how Russian trolls targeted Hillary Clinton before election – after studying House of CardsTelegraph.co.ukall 12 news articles »
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena – Washington Post

The Olympian
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena
Washington Post
WASHINGTON A political research firm behind a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump’s connections toRussia is balking at subpoenas from the House intelligence committee. A lawyer for the firm questioned the legitimacy of the panel’s …
The founders of the firm behind the TrumpRussia dossier say they’ll refuse to testify before the House Intelligence …Business Insiderall 6 news articles »
Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events
Artin Afkhami

Did President Donald Trump or other U.S. officials engage in an obstruction of justice with respect to the Russia investigation? There are three scenarios which raise that question. Its important to keep each of them in mind as one thinks about incriminating and exculpatory information, and patterns of related behavior.

Before setting out each scenario and then the Timeline, it may bear reminding that under U.S. federal criminal law, the definition of obstruction of justice includes anyone who corruptly or by any threatening letter or communication endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede a criminal investigation. According to the U.S. Attorneys Manual, even a mere attempt to pursue those ends is enough for obstruction, regardless of whether the attempt succeeds. The criminal standard matters if prosecutors were ever to consider pressing charges while Trump is President (a period in which he may be immune from indictment) or after he leaves office. The federal definition could also serve as a background for impeachment proceedings, although Congress would not be tied to the strict definitions of existing criminal law. Finally, there is always the court of public opinion.

What are the three scenarios that prosecutors, members of Congress, and the public could consider under the heading of obstruction of justice?

First, any attempts to unlawfully have FBI Director James Comey drop the investigation of Michael Flynn Second, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with FBI or congressional investigations into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials during the 2016 election Third, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with the FBI or congressional investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election (having nothing to do with any alleged collusion)It is also important to keep in mind that one form of obstruction may be in getting officials to drop an investigation (which is very difficult to ever pick back up) and another form may be in firing officials with authority over the investigation.

The following is a Timeline of events that could be relevant to considerations of the obstruction of justice. It adheres as much as possible to the most directly relevant information, but also includes some other evidence that may be relevant to investigators who are looking for patterns of behavior (for example, Trumps treatment of Preet Bharara).

Timeline

Late July 2016 According to the New York Times and later confirmed by former FBI Director James Comey, the FBI begins investigating the Russian governments attempts to interfere with the 2016 U.S. election. The investigation includes examining whether Donald Trumps presidential campaign was connected to those efforts. The catalyst for the FBI investigation includes Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Pages trip to Moscow to deliver a pro-Russia foreign policy speech at a prestigious Russian institute that same month.

Dec. 29, 2016 In retaliation for Russian interference in the election, the Obama administration ordersthe expulsion of Russian intelligence agents and imposes new sanctions on Russian state agencies and individuals suspected of hacking U.S. computer systems. The CIA and FBI had previously concluded that Russia had interfered in the election multiple times including leaking damaging information to assist the Trump campaign.

Jan. 6, 2017 According to Senate testimony by James Comey, he first meets Trump at Trump Tower on this date as part of an Intelligence Community assessment briefing on Russian election interference. After the meeting ends, Comey meets with Trump privately and assures Trump he is not beingpersonally investigated. He writes a memo about the meeting after he returns to his car. Later testifying to Congress Comey says, I was honestly concerned that he might lie about the nature of our meeting, and so I thought it really important to document.

Jan. 6, 2017 The New York Times reports that the IC concluded in its assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a campaign to influence the outcome of the 2016 election, initially seeking to weaken Hillary Clinton, but later developing a clear preference for Trump. The Times reports that at the IC assessment meeting earlier that morning, Trump responded by acknowledging, for the first time, that Russia had sought to hack into the Democratic National Committees computer systems,but asserted that these activities did not influence the elections outcome, and he did not address the IC conclusion that Putin had favored his campaign.

Jan. 19, 2017 The New York Times first reports that U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies are conducting a counterintelligence investigation into links between Russian officials and Trump associates. The investigation centers partly on past business dealings between Trump advisers and Russia. The FBI is leading the investigation, alongside the CIA, NSA, and the Treasury Departments financial crimes unit. The associates under investigation include former campaign manager Paul Manafort and advisers Carter Page and Roger Stone.

Jan. 27, 2017 According to Comeys testimony, Trump invites Comey to what he believes will be a group dinner at the White House, but which turns out to be a private dinner meeting with the then-FBI Director. Trump asks whether Comey wants to remain FBI Director, and Comey responds affirmatively. During the dinner, Trump repeatedly tells Comey that he needs loyalty, and Comey responds, You will always get honesty from me. Trump responds, Thats what I want, honest loyalty. Comey responds, You will get that from me, hoping to end the conversation. Comey later testifies to Congress that, given the one-on-one nature of the meeting and the substance of their talk, Comey believed the dinner was in part an effort to create a patronage relationship.

Feb. 13, 2017 National Security Advisor Michael Flynn resigns after revelations that he misled Vice President Mike Pence and other administration officials about a conversation with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in December 2017 about U.S. sanctions against Russia.

Feb. 14, 2017 According to Comeys Senate testimony, Comey and other IC leaders deliver a counter-terrorism briefing at the Oval Office. Trump signals the end of the briefing by thanking everyone and saying he wanted to meet with Comey privately. Trump tells Comey, I want to talk about Mike Flynn, adding that Flynn had not done anything wrong, but had to resign because he misled Pence. Trump then tells Comey, I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go. Comey later testifies that he had understood the President to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn in connection with false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December.

Immediately after the meeting, Comey prepared a memo of the communication and presented the issue to FBI senior leadership. Comey interpreted Trumps communication as a direction to drop the FBI investigation as it related to Flynns alleged false statements about his meetings with the Russian Ambassador in December 2016.

The FBI leadership team and Comey believed that it was important not to infect the investigative team with Trumps request, and decided to refuse the directive. The team concluded it would not have made sense to disclose Trumps request to Sessions, who had recused himself from the Russia investigation, or the Deputy AG, who was soon to be replaced. They believed it was best to keep the communication closely held, although they might decide to disclose it to other officials as the investigation progressed.

Shortly thereafter, Comey also met with Sessions and told him that what had just happened   him being asked to leave while the FBI Director, who reports to the AG, remained behind was inappropriate and should never happen. He said he implored Sessions to ensure that no further private communications occur between Trump and himself. Nevertheless, he did not disclose the content of Trumps request regarding dropping the Flynn investigation.

In his written statement for the Senate, Comey said the Attorney General did not reply and then told Senators in open session that Sessions was just kind of looking at me and his body language gave me a sense like, What am I going to do?

In his own testimony before the Senate, Sessions said Comeys account was incorrect and said, I did affirm the long-standing written policies of the Department of Justice concerning communications with the White House.

Mar. 2, 2017 Sessions announces that he is recusing himself from any investigations into charges that Russia meddled in the 2016 election. Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente takes over the Russia investigation following Sessions recusal.

Mar. 9, 2017 Trumps assistant calls U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bhararas office and leaves a message asking Bharara to call Trump back. Trumps direct communication request violates protocols governing presidential contact with federal prosecutors. Bharara notifies an adviser to AG Sessions of the presidential contact, and tells him he will not respond because of the protocol violation. Bharara then calls Trumps assistant to say that he cannot speak with the president directly because of the protocol violation.

Mar. 10, 2017 Trump orders Bharara and 46 other U.S. Attorneys appointed by Barack Obama to resign. The request surprises Bhararas office because in November, he had met with Trump and advisers including Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner at Trump Tower, and Trump had personally asked him to stay in the position. Bharara publicly refuses to resign.

Mar. 11, 2017 Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente calls Bharara and tells him that he is one of the 46 U.S. Attorneys being asked to resign. Bharara tells him that he is interpreting that as being fired, and Boente repeats that he is being asked to resign.

Bharara tweets that afternoon that he has just been fired by Trump:

I did not resign. Moments ago I was fired. Being the US Attorney in SDNY will forever be the greatest honor of my professional life.

Preet Bharara (@PreetBharara) March 11, 2017

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Because Bharara served as U.S. attorney of the S.D.N.Y., his jurisdiction included Trump Tower, and he would likely have known whether Trump Tower had been wiretapped by federal investigators as Trump claimed, as well as other Tower-related information potentially relevant to the Russia investigation, or to any other investigations involving the finances or other activities of Trump and his companies.

Mar. 20, 2017 In testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, Comey confirms that the FBI is investigating whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election. He also dismisses Trumps claims that President Obama wiretapped him during the presidential campaign.

Mar. 22, 2017 The Washington Post reports that Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and other senior officials participate in an Oval Office briefing, after which Trump asks Coats and CIA Director Mike Pompeo to stay for a private meeting. Trump complains to them about Comeys handling of the Russia investigation and asks them to intervene with Comey to get the FBI to stop investigating Flynn.

After the meeting, Coats discusses Trumps request with other officials and decides that against Trumps requests to issue a public statement and to intervene with Comey regarding Flynn, believing both would be inappropriate.

A day or two after Mar. 22, 2017 Shortly after the Mar. 22 meeting, Trump reportedly makes separate telephone calls to both Coats and NSA Director Adm. Michael Rogers and requests that they issue public statements denying the existence of any evidence of collusion between Trump officials and the Russian government. Both officials view the requests as inappropriate and refuse.

Then Deputy Director of the NSA Richard Ledgett writes an internal NSA memo documenting Trumps conversation with Rogers. During the call, Trump questions the accuracy of the IC Assessment that Russia had interfered with the election, in addition to trying to convince Rogers to issue a public statement.

In addition to Trumps requests, senior White House officials separately requested that top intelligence officials consider the possibility of intervening with Comey directly to have the FBI withdraw its probe of Flynn. Their lines of questioning included: Can we ask him to shut down the investigation? Are you able to assist in this matter?

Mar. 30, 2017 According to Comeys Senate testimony, on this date, Trump calls Comey at his office and tells Comey that the Russia investigation is a cloud inhibiting his ability to act as President. Trump assures Comey that he has had nothing to do with Russia and asks Comey what he can do to lift the cloud. Comey responds that the FBI is investigating the matter as quickly as it can, and that a full investigation is in Trumps best interests.

Trump then asks about why Comey had confirmed the FBI investigation into coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign at a Congressional hearing, and Comey explains that he was responding to Congressional leaders demands. Comey explains that he has briefed those leaders on who exactly the FBI is investigating and informed them that Trump is not personally under investigation. Trump repeatedly urges Comey to get the fact that he himself is not under investigation out to the public.

Comey later testifies to the Senate that the FBI and DOJ were reluctant to make a public statement that they did not have an open case on Trump for a number of reasons, most importantly because it would create a duty to correct, should that change.

Mar. 30, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Mike Flynn has informed the FBI and congressional officials of his willingness to be interviewed by House and Senate investigators as part of the investigation into Trump campaign ties to Russia, in exchange for immunity from prosecution. Flynns lawyer released a statement confirming only that discussions with Congressional investigators were taking place, though it concluded: no reasonable person, who has the benefit of advice from counsel, would submit to questioning in such a highly politicized, witch-hunt environment without assurances against unfair prosecution. The New York Times reports that congressional officials are unwilling to make a deal with Flynn until they are further along in their inquiries and have a better idea of the information Flynn might offer.

Mar. 31, 2017 Trump applauds Flynns request for immunity, tweeting:

Mike Flynn should ask for immunity in that this is a witch hunt (excuse for big election loss), by media & Dems, of historic proportion!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 31, 2017

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Apr. 11, 2017 According to Comeys testimonyTrump calls Comey again and asks what he has done about Trumps request to publicize the fact that he is not personally under investigation. Comey tells Trump that he relayed Trumps request to Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente but that he has not heard back. Trump reiterates that the cloud is interfering with his ability to act as President, and asks whether he should have his staff contact Boente. Comey advises Trump of the traditional channel, which is for White House Counsel to contact DOJ leadership to make such requests. Trump says he will do so and tells Comey, Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.Comey responds by reiterating that the proper channel for Trumps request is for Trump to follow the DOJ chain of command. Trump agrees and ends the call.

Comey testifies that in light of Trumps requests, Our our absolute primary concern was, we cant infect the investigative team. We dont want the agents and analysts working on this to know the president of the United States has has asked and when it comes from the president, I took it as a direction to get rid of this investigation, because were not going to follow that that request.

Apr. 25, 2017 Rod Rosenstein is confirmed as Deputy AG by the Senate and will serve as the official overseeing the Russia investigation in light of Sessions recusal. Rosenstein told Senators he would handle it the way I would handle any investigation, adding: I dont know the details of what, if any, investigation is ongoing, but I can certainly assure you if its America against Russia, or America against any other country, I think everyone in this room knows which side Im on.

May 8, 2017 According to the New York Times, Trump summons VP Pence, his chief of staff, top lawyers, and other senior advisors to the Oval Office and informs them that he plans to get rid of Comey, showing them an at least four-page letter, singe-spaced consisting of a long-running series of thoughts on why Comey should be fired that Trump dictated to aide Stephen Miller. The draft criticizes Comey for failing to publicly disclose that Trump was not personally under investigation and for his handling of both the Russia and Clinton email investigations.

White House Counsel Donald McGahn opposes the letter as problematic in multiple ways. His objections include the letters angry tone and its references to private conversations between Trump and Comey. He successfully convinces Trump not to use the draft. Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein then composes his own letter, which becomes a central part of the administrations public rationale for the removal. The New York Times reports that Mr. Sessions had been charged with coming up with reasons to fire him, according to administration officials.

May 8, 2017 Trump implicitly accuses former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates of leaking classified information in a tweet. Because Yates was scheduled to testify on the Flynn investigation before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee later in May, and because she had previously warned the White House that Flynn might have been compromised, this tweet could provide supporting evidence for an attempt to intimidate a witness in the Flynn investigation.

Ask Sally Yates, under oath, if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. Counsel.

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 8, 2017

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May 9, 2017 Trump firesComey from his post as FBI Director, removing the nations top law enforcement official while he was leading a criminal investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government to influence the 2016 election as well as an investigation into former NSA Adviser Michael Flynn for potentially making a false statement to the FBI. The firing raised questions about political interference in an ongoing criminal investigation that could implicate Trump and his top advisers.

In the official announcement, Trump cites letters written by AG Sessions and DAG Rosenstein that recommend [Comeys] dismissal, adding that he has accepted their recommendation and therefore is terminating Comey. The letters largely deal with the Clinton email investigation, and Trump also publicly cites Comeys handling of the Clinton investigation in announcing the change. However, Trumps letter also references the Russia investigation and Comeys actions toward Trump personally: While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the Bureau.

Of the two letters Trump cites, Sessions brief letter does recommend Comeys dismissal, and cites the reasoning in Rosensteins letter. Rosensteins letter, however, does not explicitly recommend dismissal; instead, it only outlines Comeys serious mistakes in handling the Clinton e-mail investigation. It concludes that the FBI will be unlikely to regain public trust until a new Director is put in place. White House officials say that Sessions and Rosenstein pushed for Comeys removal, but observers in Washington, including veteran former FBI agents, view the letters as pretextual.

May 9, 2017 ABC News reports that Rosenstein was so upset that he was on the verge of resigning because of Trumps public statements, and statements by White House officials, that Trump was acting on Rosensteins recommendation in firing Comey. Rosenstein tells the Sinclair Broadcast Group: No, Im not quitting.

May 9, 2017 Late that night, the White House announces that Trump will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey V. Lavrov in the Oval Office the next day.

May 10, 2017 Trump meets with Lavrov and Ambassador Kislyak in the Oval Office and speaks to them about the Russia investigation and Comeys firing. He reportedly tells the senior Russian officials: I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut jobI faced great pressure because of Russia. Thats taken offIm not under investigation.

According to the Times, Press Secretary Sean Spicer did not dispute the account. Instead, he claimed in a statement that: By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russias actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia. Spicer adds, The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it. Once again, the real story is that our national security has been undermined by the leaking of private and highly classified conversations.

May 11, 2017 In an interview with NBC Newss Lester Holt, Trump admits that even before he consulted Rosenstein, I was going to fire Comey. Theres no good time to do it, by the way. Holt mentions that in Trumps letter outlining the reasons for Comeys firing, he cited Rosensteins letter, and Trump responds, Oh, I was going to fire regardless of recommendation.

Then, while addressing how he would have fired Comey regardless, he adds: And in fact when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made up story, its an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have wonThis was an excuse for having lost an election.

When Holt asks him about whether he was angry with Comey because of the FBIs Russia investigation, Trumps responds that he never tried to pressure Comey to drop it. He adds: Maybe Ill expand that, you know, lengthen the time (of the Russia probe) because it should be over with, in my opinion, should have been over with a long time ago. Cause all it is, is an excuse but I said to myself, I might even lengthen out the investigation, but I have to do the right thing for the American people. He added, I want that to be so strong and so good. And I want it to happen.

May 12, 2017 Trump tweets, James Comey better hope that there are no tapes of our conversations, suggesting Trump may have recorded such tapes, and may decide to release them. The tweet follows a New York Times report the day prior describing the dinner between Trump and Comey at which Trump asked Comey for a pledge of loyalty.

James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 12, 2017

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The Times reports that both the president and his spokesman refused to confirm or deny whether Trump tapes his conversations with visitors. When asked about whether such tapes existed by a Fox News host later that day, Trump reiterated: That I cant talk about. I wont talk about itAll I want is for Comey to be honest. Spokesman Sean Spicer, when asked, would not give a definitive response, saying only, The president has nothing further to add on that. Spicer further denied that Trump was threatening Comey, saying Thats not a threatHe simply stated a fact. The tweet speaks for itself. Im moving on.

May 17, 2017 Rosenstein appoints former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to serve as the DOJs Special Counsel to investigate Russian interference in the election and possible coordination between Trump associates and Russia.

Trump responds by saying, a thorough investigation will confirm what we already know there was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity. I look forward to this matter concluding quickly. In the meantime, I will never stop fighting for the people and the issues that matter most to the future of our country.

However, Trump decries the decision on Twitter:

This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special counsel appointed!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel appointed!; This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!

May 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump berated Sessions in an Oval Office meeting and told him he should resign, shortly after learning of the appointment of a Special Counsel to investigate links between the Trump campaign and Russia. Trump accuses Sessions of disloyalty and then launches into a series of insults against Sessions. Sessions became emotional and told Trump he would quit, and then drafted and sent a resignation letter to the White House. The Times reports that Sessions would later tell colleagues that Trumps dressing down was the most humiliating experience he had ever had in public life.

Trump eventually rejects the resignation in May after senior administration officials argue that it would only create more problems for him. But the Times also reports that he wished to remove Sessions again in July, though he did not act on it at that time. The Times reports that Trump believes the moment Sessions recused himself is the moment Trump lost control over the Russia investigation.

This dressing down represents the low point in the relationship between Trump and Sessions, a Senator who broke ranks with fellow Senators to become one of Trumps first supporters. The Timesreports that their relationship would marginally improve over time, partly because of Sessions taking a strong public stance against leakers later on.

May 18, 2017 Rosenstein testifies before a closed-door Senate briefing that he knew Trump wanted to fire Comey before he wrote his letter justifying Comeys removal.  Rosenstein adds that Trump asked him to write the letter. He tells Senators that on May 8 he knew that Trump was planning to fire Comey.

June 6, 2017 Washington Post reporter Robert Costa reports on NBC News that The President is expected to be Tweeting on Thursday in response to Comey not to stay quiet during the testimony because he himself wants to be the one driving the process.

Costa later tweets:

I’m told by two WH sources that Pres. Trump does not plan to put down Twitter on Thursday. May live tweet if he feels the need to respond.

Robert Costa (@costareports) June 6, 2017

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June 7, 2017 DNI Coats and NSA Director Rogers both refuse to testify about their personal interactions with Trump and whether Trump asked them to intervene in the Russia investigation at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing.

Coats tells the Committee, I dont believe its appropriate for me to address that in a public session, when asked about whether Trump requested he intervene in the Russia investigation. Coats adds, however: But I am more than willing to sit before this committee during its investigative process in a closed session and answer your questions. Roger says, I am not going to discuss the specifics of interactions that I may or may have not had with the President.

Both men deny being pressured to intervene. Coats says, I have never felt pressure to intervene or interfere in any way and shape with shaping intelligence, in a political way or in relationship to an ongoing investigation. Rogers tells the Committee, To the best of my recollection, I have never been directed to do anything I believe to be illegal, immoral, unethical or inappropriate.

June 8, 2017 Trumps personal lawyer Marc Kasowitz responds to Comeys testimony  claiming Comey admitted that he unilaterally and surreptitiously made unauthorized disclosures to the press of privileged communications with the President.

However, legal experts say that the executive privilege could not have been implicated by Comeys memos, because executive privilege functions as a shield against compelled rather than voluntary disclosure, and in any case, the leaks did not disclose any classified information or break any laws, since they dealt solely with private interactions with the President (the kind of internal communications of which many insider books are written).

June 16, 2017 Trump attacks Deputy AG Rosenstein on Twitter:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 22, 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump officially announces that he does not have taped recordings of his conversations with James Comey, citing Trumps tweet:

With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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whether there are “tapes” or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings.

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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The Times report notes that Trumps tweet leaves open the possibility that others may have recorded their conversations, potentially without permission, such as the Intelligence Community generally or FBI in particular.

The Times report notes that legal experts have said Trumps initial tweet threatening that tapes existed could serve as part of a potential obstruction of justice case, because the tweet could be construed as pressuring Comey not to reveal details about his and Trumps conversations relating to the Russia investigation to federal investigators. Others say the threat of existence of tapes suggest Trump was trying to keep Comey honest.

June 16, 2017 Trump attacks Rosenstein and the expanding Russia probe in a series of tweets:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 23, 2017 In a Fox television interview, in response to a Fox interviewer suggesting that the possibility of recordings of Comeys conversations with Trump may have ensured Comeys honesty in his Senate testimony, Trump says: Well, it wasnt very stupid, I can tell you that. He added that in response to the possibility of Comeys conversations being recorded, I think his story may have changed.

July 8, 2017 The New York Times reports that Donald Trump Jr. arranged a meeting at Trump Tower with a Kremlin-linked Russian lawyer in June 2016, shortly after his father won the Republican nomination. Campaign manager Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner also attended. Though Trump Jr. initially releases a statement saying the meeting was primarily about an adoption program, emailsreleased later show meeting occurred because Trump Jr. was promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton by the Russian lawyer.

Trump personally dictates a statement for Trump Jr., stating that he and the Russian lawyer primarily discussed a program about the adoption of Russian children, and that the subject of the meeting was not a campaign issue at the time. These claims are later proven to be false. Before the revelation of the presidents involvement in these deliberations, Trumps lawyer repeatedly denied Trump was involved in drafting them. Eventually, the White House confirms that Trump weighed in on the drafting of the misleading statement.

July 10, 2017 Trump tweets that Comey illegally leaked classified information to the media:

James Comey leaked CLASSIFIED INFORMATION to the media. That is so illegal!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 10, 2017

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July 19, 2017 In an interview with the New York Times, Trump says that had he known Sessions was going to recuse himself from the Russia investigation, he would not have nominated him to be Attorney General:

TRUMP: Look, Sessions gets the job. Right after he gets the job, he recuses himself.

BAKER: Was that a mistake?

TRUMP: Well, Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job, and I would have picked somebody else.

Trump repeats that he relied on the Rosenstein letter in deciding to fire Comey:

TRUMP: [] Rosenstein becomes extremely angry because of Comeys Wednesday press conference, where he said that he would do the same thing he did a year ago with Hillary Clinton, and Rosenstein became extremely angry at that because, as a prosecutor, he knows that Comey did the wrong thing. Totally wrong thing. And he gives me a letter, O.K., he gives me a letter about Comey. And by the way, that was a tough letter, O.K. Now, perhaps I would have fired Comey anyway, and it certainly didnt hurt to have the letter, O.K.

Trump asserts again that Comey leaked confidential information in his Senate testimony, and oddly suggests that, in their initial meeting, Comey told Trump to treat Flynn good (when Comey testified that Trump had asked him to let go of the Flynn investigation):

TRUMP: Comey also says that he did something in order to get the special prose special counsel. He leaked. The reason he leaked. So, he illegally leaked.

TRUMP: So think of this. [NYT reporter] Mike [L. Schmidt]. He illegally leaks, and everyone thinks it is illegal, and by the way, it looks like its classified and all that stuff. So he got not a smart guy he got tricked into that, because they didnt even ask him that question. They asked him another question, O.K.?

________

TRUMP: He said I said hope I hope you can treat Flynn good or something like that. I didnt say anything.

Later in the interview, Trump contends that Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe has a conflict of interest involving Hillary Clinton. Days later, he repeats his claim on Twitter:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Why didn’t A.G. Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, a Comey friend who was in charge of Clinton investigation but got.

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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big dollars ($700,000) for his wife’s political run from Hillary Clinton and her representatives. Drain the Swamp!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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Jill McCabe, McCabes wife, received nearly $500,000 in 2015 campaign donations from a political action committee associated with Va. Gov. Terry McAuliffe during an unsuccessful Virginia Senate run. McAuliffe is close with both Bill and Hillary Clinton.

July 24, 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump aide and son-in-law Jared Kushner meet with Senate investigators looking into the Russia investigation on the Senate Intelligence Committee. After meeting with investigators behind closed doors, Kushner released a statement to news media: All of my actions were proper and occurred in the normal course of events of a very unique campaignI did not collude with Russians, nor do I know of anyone in the campaign who did. He is the first member of the Trump inner circle to confer with congressional investigators.

July 2425, 2017 In a series of early morning tweets, Trump renews his attacks against Sessions.

So why aren’t the Committees and investigators, and of course our beleaguered A.G., looking into Crooked Hillarys crimes & Russia relations?

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 24, 2017

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a VERY weak position on Hillary Clinton crimes (where are E-mails & DNC server) & Intel leakers!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump campaign “quietly working to boost Clinton.” So where is the investigation A.G. @seanhannity

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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He also repeated his claims regarding McCabe having a conflict of interest with respect to the Clintons:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Aug. 1, 2017 In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump again berates Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation:

WSJ: Hes the Russian guy. So Sessions has recused himself, but is Bob Muellers job safe? There is speculation

TRUMP: No, were going to see. I mean, I have no comment yet, because its too early. But well see. Were going to see. Heres the good news: I was never involved with Russia. There was nobody in the campaign. Ive got 200 people that will say that theyve never seen anybody on the campaign. Heres another he was involved early. Theres nobody on the campaign that saw anybody from Russia. We had nothing to do with Russia. They lost an election and they came up with this as an excuse. And the only ones that are laughing are the Democrats and the Russians. Theyre the only ones that are laughing. And if Jeff Sessions didnt recuse himself, we wouldnt even be talking about this subject.

And Trump further suggests that Sessions early campaign endorsement was not a sign of loyalty:

WSJ: Just on Sessions, just one thing. Would you like to see him step aside? Would you like to see him resign? Would it be in the countrys best interest just

TRUMP: Im just very disappointed in him. Im disappointed in, you know, a number of categories. I told you, the leakers. He should have he should be after them. So many people say to me: Why are they going after you on nothing and they leave Hillary Clinton alone on, you know, really major things? And it is so Im disappointed in him. And dont forget, when they say he endorsed me, I went to Alabama. I had 40,000 people, you may have been there, remember, in Mobile?

WSJ: I remember.

TRUMP: I had 40,000 people. He was the senator from Alabama. I won the state by a lot, massive numbers. A lot of the states I won by massive numbers. But he was a senator. He looks at 40,000 people and he probably says, what do I have to lose, and he endorsed me. So its not like a great, loyal thing about the endorsement. But Im very disappointed in Jeff Sessions.

Aug. 3, 2017 Vox reports that, in late May, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe told several people in high-level FBI management that they should consider themselves potential witnesses in any potential obstruction of justice investigation involving Trump. He told colleagues that he could also be a potential witness himself.

Aug. 26, 2017 The Washington Post reports that sometime this past spring, Trump approached AG Sessions and asked whether the DOJ could possibly drop its case against former Maricopa County, Arizona Sherriff Joe Arpaio, whom Trump has long respected. Sessions advised him that it would have been inappropriate to drop the case, after which Trump decided to let the case go to trial and subsequently grant a pardon. Legal experts believe that Trumps handling of the Arpaio case may be relevant to determining his intent in speaking to Comey about the FBIs Michael Flynn investigation (I hope you can let this go) in an obstruction of justice probe.

Aug. 31, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Trumps lawyers have met with Mueller several times in recent months and have submitted several memos to him contending that Trump didnt obstruct justice by firing Comey and questioning Comeys reliability as a potential witness.

Sept. 19, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Muellers office interviewed DAG Rosenstein in June or July 2017 about Trumps removal of Comey. A source told CNN that Rosenstein has no current plans to recuse himself from the investigation, suggesting he does not view himself as a key witness in the obstruction of justice investigation. DOJ Spokesperson Ian Prior released a statement saying, As the deputy attorney general has said numerous times, if there comes a time when he needs to recuse, he will. However, nothing has changed.

[Editors Note: For more analysis, readers may be interested in: A Round-Up of Just Securitys Obstruction of Justice Coverage]

Read on Just Security »

Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour

PBS NewsHour
Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers
PBS NewsHour
In 2013, federal investigators obtained a warrant under a 1986 law for emails from an account they believe was being used in illegal drug transactions as well as identifying information about the user of the email account. Microsoft turned over the 
Justices to Hear Government’s Email Dispute With MicrosoftU.S. News & World Report
Supreme Court to consider major digital privacy case on Microsoft email storageWashington Postall 34 news articles »
Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy
The Ledger
Perhaps the most famous case in the past two decades is the Patriot Act. Shortly after 9/11, congress implemented and passed the Patriot Act. This act allowed three-letter agencies such as the NSA or the FBI to expand their power and ability to
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV

KXII-TV
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands
KXII-TV
The White House said that in South Korea, Trump will meet with President Moon Jae-in and “call on the international community to join together in maximizing pressure on North Korea.” In Japan, Trump will meet with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and and more »
The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
The apprentice president
Emporia Gazette
A New York Times analysis concludes that Trump and his heirs would enjoy a $1.1 billion windfall under his tax plan. Fairy dust has infected the administration’s … “Donald Trump got elected with minority support from the American electorate, and most and more »
National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
Just Security

Tuesday, October 17

10:00am Senate Committee of the Judiciary Nominations: Gregory G. Katsas to be United States Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia Circuit; Jeffrey Uhlman Beaverstock to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of Alabama; Emily Coody Marks to be United States District Judge for the Middle District of Alabama; Brett Joseph Talley to be United States District Judge for the Middle District of Alabama; Holly Lou Teeter to be United States District Judge for the District of Kansas (here)

2:30pm Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Nomination of Christopher Sharpley to be Inspector General of the Central Intelligence Agency (here)

Wednesday, October 18

10:00am Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Nominations: Jeff T.H. Pon to be Director of the Office of Personnel Management; Michael J. Rigas to be Deputy Director of the Office of Personnel Management; Emily W. Murphy to be Administrator of the General Services Administration (here)

10:00am Senate Committee of the Judiciary Oversight of the U.S. Department of Justice (here)

2:30pm Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Nominations: Mr. Thomas L. Carter of South Carolina for the Rank of Ambassador during his Tenure of Service as Representative of the United States of America on the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization; Ms. Jennifer Gillian Newstead of New York to be Legal Adviser of the Department of State; Ms. Manisha Singh of Florida to be an Assistant Secretary Of State (Economic And Business Affairs) (here)

2:30pm Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Federal Spending Oversight and Emergency Management Subcommittee Broken Beakers: Federal Support for Research (here)

 

Thursday, October 19

9:30am Senate Committee on Armed Services Roles and Responsibilities for Defending the Nation from Cyber Attack (here)

10:30am Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Modernizing the Food for Peace Program (here)

Read on Just Security »

Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)

The Independent (blog)
Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq
The Independent (blog)
But the language that Mr Trump is using is dangerous, just as the language he is using about North Korea is verydangerous, things can get out of control. And we have a situation where Trump is refusing to accept what the UN is saying that Iran is and more »
Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV

WILX-TV
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands
WILX-TV
The White House said that in South Korea, Trump will meet with President Moon Jae-in and “call on the international community to join together in maximizing pressure on North Korea.” In Japan, Trump will meet with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and 
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US electionAxios
Vladimir Putin’s bored — life is too easyUPI.com
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?The Conversation US
Express.co.uk
all 31 news articles »

Putin Trump – Google News

Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
Last week on our Foreign Policy feed, we wrote about how the USA Liberty Act, which is the House Judiciary Committee’s proposal to reauthorize the Section 702 surveillance program, takes for granted that a “clean reauthorization” is impossible and imposes reforms for the sake of reform. The piece begins:What happens when you start with panicky civil libertarians, sprinkle in some right-wing conspiracy theories about unmasking intelligence, and polish it off with a healthy dose of congressional dysfunction and a self-imposed legislative deadline? You get bad surveillance policy in the name of reform. Dont look now, but thats whats shaping up in Congress at this moment.

In a little less than three months, Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which authorizes the government to monitor, without an individualized warrant, the communications of non-U.S. persons reasonably believed to be overseas is set to expire. Section 702 is a very big deal; it cannot be allowed to expire for any length of time without real damage to ongoing intelligence operations. So the closer we get to the sunset, the more opportunity there is to include mischievous reforms that the intelligence community simply has to accept everyone knows the intelligence community would rather take some very bitter pills than lose a program it needs to accomplish its mission.

Last week, the House Judiciary Committee introduced legislation to reauthorize the 702 authority, but it included a number of changes including a few that are quite significant. No, this bill isnt the worst thing in the world. The sky isnt falling. And plenty of other proposals to reform 702 would inflict far more serious harms than this one would. But its not a good bill either. It would make the FBIs job harder for no good reason. It responds to imagined risks, rather than real abuses.

The Judiciary Committee bill is the product of an endeavor that was flawed from the outset. Its drafters were operating from the apparent premise that while 702 is a critical national security authority that must be preserved, a clean reauthorization of it without changes is currently a political impossibility. Why is that? Liberals and civil libertarians have always had anxieties about 702. Libertarian conservatives and tea party types have more recently joined the fray. Over the last year, the fraudulent unmasking controversy most of which has nothing to do with 702 has stoked these anxieties. And lots of people have instinctive difficulty vesting powerful authorities in the hands of the intelligence community under President Donald Trump. The House Judiciary Committee is one of the Houses more polarized committees, so the apparent goal was to thread the needles and draft a bipartisan bill that might satisfy calls for reform while minimizing operational impacts. And if it passes the Judiciary Committee, the bill has a good chance to become law.

If you accept the premise that precluded a clean reauthorization, the committees bill is a decent though far from perfect effort.

We dont accept the premise, however, but start with a different one: This is an already dense and complicated area of law in which it is tough for national security operators to do their jobs. To make it denser and more complicated, you need a reason. Reform for reforms sake is not a good enough reason to add complexity.

11:55 AM 10/16/2017 TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
SYRIA The U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (S.D.F.) began their final push to oust Islamic State militants from Raqqa yesterday, marking the last phase to combat the militants in their de facto capital in Syria and after a significant number of militants surrendered as part of a locally brokered deal. John Davison and Ellen Francis report … Continue reading”11:55 AM 10/16/2017 – TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION – from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017″
12:03 PM 10/16/2017 How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election Axios
Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites) Trump – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News Fox News Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ Fox News President Trump tweeted Monday that he hopes Crooked … Continue reading”12:03 PM 10/16/2017 – How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios”
What Melania Trump could learn from Monica Lewinsky – Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune
What Melania Trump could learn from Monica Lewinsky
Chicago Tribune
Melania Trump could learn a thing or two about courage from Lewinsky. America seemingly has given Trump a pass on her obligations as first lady. It is clear why she might feel more comfortable in her husband’s shadow. His unpresidential behavior in the …
Republican lawmakers’ troubles deepen as Koch donors and Bannon take aim – Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Times
Republican lawmakers’ troubles deepen as Koch donors and Bannon take aim
Los Angeles Times
For other lawmakers, however, the GOP dilemma has become an existential question. The party remains deeply split between its establishment class including billionaires Charles and David Koch, whose groups declined to support Trump for president …
Poll: Majority think GOP tax plan will benefit the wealthyPolitico
Trump’s Executive Actions May Mean More Headaches For Struggling CongressNPR
ASCH: Trump’s rhetoric has infected Republican politicsUniversity of Virginia The Cavalier Daily
Albany Times Union –Washington Examiner –Seeking Alpha
all 83 news articles »
Inside the ‘adult day-care center’: How aides try to control and coerce Trump – Washington Post

Washington Post
Inside the ‘adult day-care center’: How aides try to control and coerce Trump
Washington Post
During the campaign, when President Trump’s advisers  wanted him to stop talking about a certain issue such as when he attacked a Gold Star military family they sometimes presented him with polls demonstrating how the controversy was harming his …
The Note: Trump moves to break governing deadlock but can’t just go it aloneABC News
Juan Williams: Trump is becoming a failed presidentThe Hill
Trump team claims US families will receive extra $4000 a year from tax cutsThe Guardianall 38 news articles »
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops – TOLOnews

TOLOnews
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops
TOLOnews
The report said that Russia’s intelligence services are sending fleets of fuel tankers into Afghanistan through the Hairatan border crossing with Uzbekistan to companies operating on behalf of the Taliban. The Times reported that about $2.5 million USD and more »
Trump allies worry that losing the House means impeachment – CNN

CNN
Trump allies worry that losing the House means impeachment
CNN
If Republicans forfeit the House, Democrats will almost certainly create a spectacle that will derail conservatives’ agenda and the remainder of Trump’s first term — a spectacle complete with a raft of new subpoenas, a spotlight on the Russia 
The Daily 202: Trump’s attacks on Senate Republicans are paying political dividendsWashington Postall 85 news articles »
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops – TOLOnews

TOLOnews
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops
TOLOnews
The report said that Russia’s intelligence services are sending fleets of fuel tankers into Afghanistan through the Hairatan border crossing with Uzbekistan to companies operating on behalf of the Taliban. The Times reported that about $2.5 million USD and more »
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios

Axios
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election
Axios
U.S. investigators are probing whether Russia relied on clandestine American help to identify political soft spots and pressure points in its campaign to disrupt the 2016 election. But experts say that, even without local assistance, Russia’s own 
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?San Francisco Chronicle
Inside Russia’s alliance with white nationalists across the globeThinkProgressall 12 news articles »
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios

Axios
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election
Axios
U.S. investigators are probing whether Russia relied on clandestine American help to identify political soft spots and pressure points in its campaign to disrupt the 2016 election. But experts say that, even without local assistance, Russia’s own 
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? Midland Daily News
Inside Russia’s alliance with white nationalists across the globeThinkProgressall 31  news articles »
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch – Patheos (blog)

Patheos (blog)
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch
Patheos (blog)
It’s the place where Russian oligarchs and organized crime (but I repeat myself), including Putin himself, launder their money through banks. And guess who was vice chairman of … Trump’s Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. While he was on the board of and more »

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FEATURED POSTS: 7:57 AM 9/20/2017 – PUTIN’S PRO-TRUMP OPERATION MAY HAVE BEEN FAR BIGGER THAN WE YET KNOW – MOTHER JONES | ANATOMY OF A RUSSIAN ATTACK

“We don’t know what these Facebook ads looked like, we don’t know who they were targeting, and we don’t know how many millions of Americans may have been exposed to them.”

Putin’s Pro-Trump Operation May Have Been Far Bigger Than We Yet Know
Did the Kremlin help make Trump the “first Facebook president”?
BILL BUZENBERG – SEP. 20, 2017 6:00 AM

M.N.: And we have to know the answers to these and many other questions. 

12:26 PM 9/20/2017 – “Political marketing” and possible use of the “psychotronic weapons” techniques in targeted advertising

_________________________________

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12:28 PM 10/16/2017 – Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events

Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts

Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites)
FBI News Review: 12:12 PM 10/16/2017 FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting

Canada Free Press (blog) FBI: Oh, by the way, we just found 30 pages of information about the Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting Canada Free Press (blog) As a result, your [FOIA] request has been reopened (Surprisingly, the Trump Justice … The meeting occurred during the then-ongoing investigation of Mrs. Clinton’s email server, and mere hours before the Benghazi report was released publicly …

FBI News Review

Trump – from Huffington Post

Trump – from Huffington Post from mikenova (2 sites)
Donald Trump: Trump On Gays: Pence Wants To ‘Hang Them All’

A New Yorker article says Trump teases the socially conservative vice president about religion, abortion and gay rights.

Donald Trump

Trump News Review

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)
Trump Investigations Report: 12:03 PM 10/16/2017 How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election Axios
Trump Investigations Report: 11:55 AM 10/16/2017 TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
michael flynn – Google News: Ivanka Trump reportedly took over one of Chris Christie’s transition team meetings and asked Michael Flynn what job … – Business Insider
Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites): Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV
trump as danger to National Security – Google News: Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)
Just Security: National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
analysis of trump electorate – Google News: The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
trump and putin – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV
Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV
putin and trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WSAZ-TV
Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: The Week That Will Be
FBI politicization – Google News: Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
michael flynn – Google News: Report: Trump Joked Pence ‘Wants to Hang’ Gays – Daily Beast
trump under federal investigation – Google News: Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour
Russian Intelligence services – Google News: Clinton calls Assange ‘a tool of Russian intelligence’ – Politico
Trump and the Mob – Google News: No, There’s No Excuse for ‘Conservative’ Shout-Downs – National Review
Just Security: Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events
crime and terror – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)
organized crime and terrorism – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)
organized crime and intelligence – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)

 

Saved Stories – 1. Trump
Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour
Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – KXII-TV
The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)
Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV
Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
11:55 AM 10/16/2017 TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
12:03 PM 10/16/2017 How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election Axios
What Melania Trump could learn from Monica Lewinsky – Chicago Tribune
Republican lawmakers’ troubles deepen as Koch donors and Bannon take aim – Los Angeles Times
Inside the ‘adult day-care center’: How aides try to control and coerce Trump – Washington Post
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops – TOLOnews
Trump allies worry that losing the House means impeachment – CNN
Russia Funding Taliban in War Against NATO Troops – TOLOnews
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch – Patheos (blog)
7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trumps America?
Dissident on Trump era: ‘China, Russia, they all laugh about it’ – The Hill (blog)
The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
In Puerto Rico, Tesla is Doing What Donald Trump Isn’tFixing it – Newsweek
The Health 202: Trump has badly undercut his own administration on Puerto Rico – Washington Post

Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events 

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Did President Donald Trump or other U.S. officials engage in an obstruction of justice with respect to the Russia investigation? There are three scenarios which raise that question. It’s important to keep each of them in mind as one thinks about incriminating and exculpatory information, and patterns of related behavior.

Before setting out each scenario and then the Timeline, it may bear reminding that under U.S. federal criminal law, the definition of obstruction of justice includes anyone who “corruptly … or by any threatening letter or communication … endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede” a criminal investigation. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Manual, even a mere attempt to pursue those ends is enough for obstruction, regardless of whether the attempt succeeds. The criminal standard matters if prosecutors were ever to consider pressing charges while Trump is President (a period in which he may be immune from indictment) or after he leaves office. The federal definition could also serve as a background for impeachment proceedings, although Congress would not be tied to the strict definitions of existing criminal law. Finally, there is always the court of public opinion.

What are the three scenarios that prosecutors, members of Congress, and the public could consider under the heading of obstruction of justice?

First, any attempts to unlawfully have FBI Director James Comey drop the investigation of Michael Flynn Second, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with FBI or congressional investigations into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials during the 2016 election Third, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with the FBI or congressional investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election (having nothing to do with any alleged collusion)It is also important to keep in mind that one form of obstruction may be in getting officials to drop an investigation (which is very difficult to ever pick back up) and another form may be in firing officials with authority over the investigation.

The following is a Timeline of events that could be relevant to considerations of the obstruction of justice. It adheres as much as possible to the most directly relevant information, but also includes some other evidence that may be relevant to investigators who are looking for patterns of behavior (for example, Trump’s treatment of Preet Bharara).

Timeline

Late July 2016 – According to the New York Times and later confirmed by former FBI Director James Comey, the FBI begins investigating the Russian government’s attempts to interfere with the 2016 U.S. election. The investigation includes examining whether Donald Trump’s presidential campaign was connected to those efforts. The catalyst for the FBI investigation includes Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Page’s trip to Moscow to deliver a pro-Russia foreign policy speech at a prestigious Russian institute that same month.

Dec. 29, 2016 – In retaliation for Russian interference in the election, the Obama administration ordersthe expulsion of Russian intelligence agents and imposes new sanctions on Russian state agencies and individuals suspected of hacking U.S. computer systems. The CIA and FBI had previously concluded that Russia had interfered in the election multiple times including leaking damaging information to assist the Trump campaign.

Jan. 6, 2017 – According to Senate testimony by James Comey, he first meets Trump at Trump Tower on this date as part of an Intelligence Community assessment briefing on Russian election interference. After the meeting ends, Comey meets with Trump privately and assures Trump he is not beingpersonally investigated. He writes a memo about the meeting after he returns to his car. Later testifying to Congress Comey says, “I was honestly concerned that he might lie about the nature of our meeting, and so I thought it really important to document.”

Jan. 6, 2017 – The New York Times reports that the IC concluded in its assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a campaign to influence the outcome of the 2016 election, initially seeking to weaken Hillary Clinton, but later developing a “clear preference” for Trump. The Timesreports that at the IC assessment meeting earlier that morning, Trump “responded by acknowledging, for the first time, that Russia had sought to hack into the Democratic National Committee’s computer systems,” but asserted that these activities did not influence the election’s outcome, and he did not address the IC conclusion that Putin had favored his campaign.

Jan. 19, 2017 – The New York Times first reports that U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies are conducting a counterintelligence investigation into links between Russian officials and Trump associates. The investigation centers partly on past business dealings between Trump advisers and Russia. The FBI is leading the investigation, alongside the CIA, NSA, and the Treasury Department’s financial crimes unit. The associates under investigation include former campaign manager Paul Manafort and advisers Carter Page and Roger Stone.

Jan. 27, 2017 – According to Comey’s testimony, Trump invites Comey to what he believes will be a group dinner at the White House, but which turns out to be a private dinner meeting with the then-FBI Director. Trump asks whether Comey wants to remain FBI Director, and Comey responds affirmatively. During the dinner, Trump repeatedly tells Comey that he “needs loyalty,” and Comey responds, “You will always get honesty from me.” Trump responds, “That’s what I want, honest loyalty.” Comey responds, “You will get that from me,” hoping to end the conversation. Comey later testifies to Congress that, given the one-on-one nature of the meeting and the substance of their talk, Comey believed the dinner was in part an effort to create a “patronage relationship.”

Feb. 13, 2017 – National Security Advisor Michael Flynn resigns after revelations that he misled Vice President Mike Pence and other administration officials about a conversation with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in December 2017 about U.S. sanctions against Russia.

Feb. 14, 2017 – According to Comey’s Senate testimony, Comey and other IC leaders deliver a counter-terrorism briefing at the Oval Office. Trump signals the end of the briefing by thanking everyone and saying he wanted to meet with Comey privately. Trump tells Comey, “I want to talk about Mike Flynn,” adding that Flynn had not done anything wrong, but had to resign because he misled Pence. Trump then tells Comey, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.” Comey later testifies that he “had understood the President to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn in connection with false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December.”

Immediately after the meeting, Comey prepared a memo of the communication and presented the issue to FBI senior leadership. Comey interpreted Trump’s communication as “a direction” to drop the FBI investigation as it related to Flynn’s alleged false statements about his meetings with the Russian Ambassador in December 2016.

The FBI leadership team and Comey believed that it was important not to “infect the investigative team with Trump’s request,” and decided to refuse the directive. The team concluded it would not have made sense to disclose Trump’s request to Sessions, who had recused himself from the Russia investigation, or the Deputy AG, who was soon to be replaced. They believed it was best to keep the communication “closely held,” although they might decide to disclose it to other officials as the investigation progressed.

Shortly thereafter, Comey also met with Sessions and told him “that what had just happened –  him being asked to leave while the FBI Director, who reports to the AG, remained behind – was inappropriate and should never happen.” He said he “implored” Sessions to ensure that no further private communications occur between Trump and himself. Nevertheless, he did not disclose the content of Trump’s request regarding dropping the Flynn investigation.

In his written statement for the Senate, Comey said the Attorney General “did not reply” and then told Senators in open session that Sessions was “just kind of looking at me” and “his body language gave me a sense like, ‘What am I going to do?’”

In his own testimony before the Senate, Sessions said Comey’s account was “incorrect” and said, “I did affirm the long-standing written policies of the Department of Justice concerning communications with the White House.”

Mar. 2, 2017 – Sessions announces that he is recusing himself from any investigations into charges that Russia meddled in the 2016 election. Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente takes over the Russia investigation following Sessions’ recusal.

Mar. 9, 2017 – Trump’s assistant calls U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara’s office and leaves a message asking Bharara to call Trump back. Trump’s direct communication request violates protocols governing presidential contact with federal prosecutors. Bharara notifies an adviser to AG Sessions of the presidential contact, and tells him he will not respond because of the protocol violation. Bharara then calls Trump’s assistant to say that he cannot speak with the president directly because of the protocol violation.

Mar. 10, 2017 – Trump orders Bharara and 46 other U.S. Attorneys appointed by Barack Obama to resign. The request surprises Bharara’s office because in November, he had met with Trump and advisers including Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner at Trump Tower, and Trump had personally asked him to stay in the position. Bharara publicly refuses to resign.

Mar. 11, 2017 – Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente calls Bharara and tells him that he is one of the 46 U.S. Attorneys being asked to resign. Bharara tells him that he is interpreting that as being fired, and Boente repeats that he is being asked to resign.

Bharara tweets that afternoon that he has just been fired by Trump:

I did not resign. Moments ago I was fired. Being the US Attorney in SDNY will forever be the greatest honor of my professional life.

— Preet Bharara (@PreetBharara) March 11, 2017

//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Because Bharara served as U.S. attorney of the S.D.N.Y., his jurisdiction included Trump Tower, and he would likely have known whether Trump Tower had been wiretapped by federal investigators as Trump claimed, as well as other Tower-related information potentially relevant to the Russia investigation, or to any other investigations involving the finances or other activities of Trump and his companies.

Mar. 20, 2017 – In testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, Comey confirms that the FBI is investigating whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election. He also dismisses Trump’s claims that President Obama wiretapped him during the presidential campaign.

Mar. 22, 2017 – The Washington Post reports that Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and other senior officials participate in an Oval Office briefing, after which Trump asks Coats and CIA Director Mike Pompeo to stay for a private meeting. Trump complains to them about Comey’s handling of the Russia investigation and asks them to intervene with Comey to get the FBI to stop investigating Flynn.

After the meeting, Coats discusses Trump’s request with other officials and decides that against Trump’s requests to issue a public statement and to intervene with Comey regarding Flynn, believing both would be inappropriate.

A day or two after Mar. 22, 2017 – Shortly after the Mar. 22 meeting, Trump reportedly makes separate telephone calls to both Coats and NSA Director Adm. Michael Rogers and requests that they issue public statements denying the existence of any evidence of collusion between Trump officials and the Russian government. Both officials view the requests as inappropriate and refuse.

Then Deputy Director of the NSA Richard Ledgett writes an internal NSA memo documenting Trump’s conversation with Rogers. During the call, Trump questions the accuracy of the IC Assessment that Russia had interfered with the election, in addition to trying to convince Rogers to issue a public statement.

In addition to Trump’s requests, senior White House officials separately requested that top intelligence officials consider the possibility of intervening with Comey directly to have the FBI withdraw its probe of Flynn. Their lines of questioning included: “Can we ask him to shut down the investigation? Are you able to assist in this matter?”

Mar. 30, 2017 – According to Comey’s Senate testimony, on this date, Trump calls Comey at his office and tells Comey that the Russia investigation is a “cloud” inhibiting his ability to act as President. Trump assures Comey that he has had nothing to do with Russia and asks Comey what he can do to “lift the cloud.” Comey responds that the FBI is investigating the matter as quickly as it can, and that a full investigation is in Trump’s best interests.

Trump then asks about why Comey had confirmed the FBI investigation into coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign at a Congressional hearing, and Comey explains that he was responding to Congressional leaders’ demands. Comey explains that he has briefed those leaders on who exactly the FBI is investigating and informed them that Trump is not personally under investigation. Trump repeatedly urges Comey to get the fact that he himself is not under investigation out to the public.

Comey later testifies to the Senate that the FBI and DOJ were reluctant to make a public statement that they did not have an open case on Trump “for a number of reasons, most importantly because it would create a duty to correct, should that change.”

Mar. 30, 2017 – The Wall Street Journal reports that Mike Flynn has informed the FBI and congressional officials of his willingness to be interviewed by House and Senate investigators as part of the investigation into Trump campaign ties to Russia, in exchange for immunity from prosecution. Flynn’s lawyer released a statement confirming only that discussions with Congressional investigators were taking place, though it concluded: “no reasonable person, who has the benefit of advice from counsel, would submit to questioning in such a highly politicized, witch-hunt environment without assurances against unfair prosecution.” The New York Times reports that congressional officials are unwilling to make a deal with Flynn until they are further along in their inquiries and have a better idea of the information Flynn might offer.

Mar. 31, 2017 – Trump applauds Flynn’s request for immunity, tweeting:

Mike Flynn should ask for immunity in that this is a witch hunt (excuse for big election loss), by media & Dems, of historic proportion!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 31, 2017

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Apr. 11, 2017 – According to Comey’s testimonyTrump calls Comey again and asks what he has done about Trump’s request to publicize the fact that he is not personally under investigation. Comey tells Trump that he relayed Trump’s request to Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente but that he has not heard back. Trump reiterates that the “cloud” is interfering with his ability to act as President, and asks whether he should have his staff contact Boente. Comey advises Trump of the traditional channel, which is for White House Counsel to contact DOJ leadership to make such requests. Trump says he will do so and tells Comey, “Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.” Comey responds by reiterating that the proper channel for Trump’s request is for Trump to follow the DOJ chain of command. Trump agrees and ends the call.

Comey testifies that in light of Trump’s requests, “Our — our absolute primary concern was, we can’t infect the investigative team. We don’t want the agents and analysts working on this to know the president of the United States has — has asked — and when it comes from the president, I took it as a direction — to get rid of this investigation, because we’re not going to follow that — that request.

Apr. 25, 2017 – Rod Rosenstein is confirmed as Deputy AG by the Senate and will serve as the official overseeing the Russia investigation in light of Sessions’ recusal. Rosenstein told Senators he would handle it “the way I would handle any investigation,” adding: “I don’t know the details of what, if any, investigation is ongoing, but I can certainly assure you if it’s America against Russia, or America against any other country, I think everyone in this room knows which side I’m on.”

May 8, 2017 – According to the New York Times, Trump summons VP Pence, his chief of staff, top lawyers, and other senior advisors to the Oval Office and informs them that he plans to get rid of Comey, showing them an at least four-page letter, singe-spaced consisting of a long-running series of thoughts on why Comey should be fired that Trump dictated to aide Stephen Miller. The draft criticizes Comey for failing to publicly disclose that Trump was not personally under investigation and for his handling of both the Russia and Clinton email investigations.

White House Counsel Donald McGahn opposes the letter as “problematic” in multiple ways. His objections include the letter’s angry tone and its references to private conversations between Trump and Comey. He successfully convinces Trump not to use the draft. Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein then composes his own letter, which becomes a central part of the administration’s public rationale for the removal. The New York Times reports that “Mr. Sessions had been charged with coming up with reasons to fire him,” according to administration officials.

May 8, 2017 — Trump implicitly accuses former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates of leaking classified information in a tweet. Because Yates was scheduled to testify on the Flynn investigation before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee later in May, and because she had previously warned the White House that Flynn might have been compromised, this tweet could provide supporting evidence for an attempt to intimidate a witness in the Flynn investigation.

Ask Sally Yates, under oath, if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. Counsel.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 8, 2017

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May 9, 2017 – Trump fires Comey from his post as FBI Director, removing the nation’s top law enforcement official while he was leading a criminal investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government to influence the 2016 election as well as an investigation into former NSA Adviser Michael Flynn for potentially making a false statement to the FBI. The firing raised questions about political interference in an ongoing criminal investigation that could implicate Trump and his top advisers.

In the official announcement, Trump cites letters written by AG Sessions and DAG Rosenstein that “recommend [Comey’s] dismissal,” adding that he has accepted their recommendation and therefore is terminating Comey. The letters largely deal with the Clinton email investigation, and Trump also publicly cites Comey’s handling of the Clinton investigation in announcing the change. However, Trump’s letter also references the Russia investigation and Comey’s actions toward Trump personally: “While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the Bureau.”

Of the two letters Trump cites, Sessions’ brief letter does recommend Comey’s dismissal, and cites the reasoning in Rosenstein’s letter. Rosenstein’s letter, however, does not explicitly recommend dismissal; instead, it only outlines Comey’s “serious mistakes” in handling the Clinton e-mail investigation. It concludes that the FBI will be unlikely to regain public trust until a new Director is put in place. White House officials say that Sessions and Rosenstein pushed for Comey’s removal, but observers in Washington, including veteran former FBI agents, view the letters as pretextual.

May 9, 2017 – ABC News reports that Rosenstein was so upset that he was on the verge of resigning because of Trump’s public statements, and statements by White House officials, that Trump was acting on Rosenstein’s recommendation in firing Comey. Rosenstein tells the Sinclair Broadcast Group: “No, I’m not quitting.”

May 9, 2017 – Late that night, the White House announces that Trump will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey V. Lavrov in the Oval Office the next day.

May 10, 2017 –Trump meets with Lavrov and Ambassador Kislyak in the Oval Office and speaks to them about the Russia investigation and Comey’s firing. He reportedly tells the senior Russian officials: “I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job…I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off…I’m not under investigation.”

According to the Times, Press Secretary Sean Spicer did not dispute the account. Instead, he claimed in a statement that: “By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russia’s actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia. Spicer adds, “The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it. Once again, the real story is that our national security has been undermined by the leaking of private and highly classified conversations.”

May 11, 2017 – In an interview with NBC News’s Lester Holt, Trump admits that even before he consulted Rosenstein, “I was going to fire Comey. There’s no good time to do it, by the way.” Holt mentions that in Trump’s letter outlining the reasons for Comey’s firing, he cited Rosenstein’s letter, and Trump responds, “Oh, I was going to fire regardless of recommendation.”

Then, while addressing how he would have fired Comey regardless, he adds: “And in fact when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won…This was an excuse for having lost an election.”

When Holt asks him about whether he was angry with Comey because of the FBI’s Russia investigation, Trumps responds that he never tried to pressure Comey to drop it. He adds: “Maybe I’ll expand that, you know, lengthen the time (of the Russia probe) because it should be over with, in my opinion, should have been over with a long time ago. ‘Cause all it is, is an excuse but I said to myself, I might even lengthen out the investigation, but I have to do the right thing for the American people.” He added, “I want that to be so strong and so good. And I want it to happen.”

May 12, 2017 – Trump tweets, “James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations,” suggesting Trump may have recorded such tapes, and may decide to release them. The tweet follows a New York Times report the day prior describing the dinner between Trump and Comey at which Trump asked Comey for a pledge of loyalty.

James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 12, 2017

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The Times reports that both the president and his spokesman refused to confirm or deny whether Trump tapes his conversations with visitors. When asked about whether such tapes existed by a Fox News host later that day, Trump reiterated: “That I can’t talk about. I won’t talk about it…All I want is for Comey to be honest.” Spokesman Sean Spicer, when asked, would not give a definitive response, saying only, “The president has nothing further to add on that.” Spicer further denied that Trump was threatening Comey, saying “That’s not a threat…He simply stated a fact. The tweet speaks for itself. I’m moving on.”

May 17, 2017 – Rosenstein appoints former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to serve as the DOJ’s Special Counsel to investigate Russian interference in the election and possible coordination between Trump associates and Russia.

Trump responds by saying, “a thorough investigation will confirm what we already know — there was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity. I look forward to this matter concluding quickly. In the meantime, I will never stop fighting for the people and the issues that matter most to the future of our country.”

However, Trump decries the decision on Twitter:

This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special counsel appointed!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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“With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel appointed!;” “This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!”

May 2017 – The New York Times reports that Trump berated Sessions in an Oval Office meeting and told him he should resign, shortly after learning of the appointment of a Special Counsel to investigate links between the Trump campaign and Russia. Trump accuses Sessions of “disloyalty” and then launches into a series of insults against Sessions. Sessions became emotional and told Trump he would quit, and then drafted and sent a resignation letter to the White House. The Times reports that Sessions would later tell colleagues that Trump’s dressing down was the most humiliating experience he had ever had in public life.

Trump eventually rejects the resignation in May after senior administration officials argue that it would only create more problems for him. But the Times also reports that he wished to remove Sessions again in July, though he did not act on it at that time. The Times reports that Trump believes the moment Sessions recused himself is the moment Trump lost control over the Russia investigation.

This dressing down represents the low point in the relationship between Trump and Sessions, a Senator who broke ranks with fellow Senators to become one of Trump’s first supporters. The Timesreports that their relationship would marginally improve over time, partly because of Sessions’ taking a strong public stance against leakers later on.

May 18, 2017 – Rosenstein testifies before a closed-door Senate briefing that he knew Trump wanted to fire Comey before he wrote his letter justifying Comey’s removal.  Rosenstein adds that Trump asked him to write the letter. He tells Senators that on May 8 he knew that Trump was planning to fire Comey.

June 6, 2017 – Washington Post reporter Robert Costa reports on NBC News that “The President is expected to be Tweeting on Thursday in response to Comey — not to stay quiet during the testimony — because he himself wants to be the one driving the process.”

Costa later tweets:

I’m told by two WH sources that Pres. Trump does not plan to put down Twitter on Thursday. May live tweet if he feels the need to respond.

— Robert Costa (@costareports) June 6, 2017

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June 7, 2017 – DNI Coats and NSA Director Rogers both refuse to testify about their personal interactions with Trump and whether Trump asked them to intervene in the Russia investigation at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing.

Coats tells the Committee, “I don’t believe it’s appropriate for me to address that in a public session,” when asked about whether Trump requested he intervene in the Russia investigation. Coats adds, however: “But I am more than willing to sit before this committee during its investigative process in a closed session and answer your questions.” Roger says, “I am not going to discuss the specifics of interactions that I may or may have not had with the President.”

Both men deny being pressured to intervene. Coats says, “I have never felt pressure to intervene or interfere in any way and shape — with shaping intelligence, in a political way or in relationship to an ongoing investigation.” Rogers tells the Committee, “To the best of my recollection, I have never been directed to do anything I believe to be illegal, immoral, unethical or inappropriate.

June 8, 2017 – Trump’s personal lawyer Marc Kasowitz responds to Comey’s testimony  claiming Comey “admitted that he unilaterally and surreptitiously made unauthorized disclosures to the press of privileged communications with the President.”

However, legal experts say that the executive privilege could not have been implicated by Comey’s memos, because executive privilege functions as a shield against compelled rather than voluntary disclosure, and in any case, the leaks did not disclose any classified information or break any laws, since they dealt solely with private interactions with the President (the kind of internal communications of which many insider books are written).

June 16, 2017 – Trump attacks Deputy AG Rosenstein on Twitter:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 22, 2017 – The New York Times reports that Trump officially announces that he does not have taped recordings of his conversations with James Comey, citing Trump’s tweet:

With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea…

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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…whether there are “tapes” or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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The Times report notes that Trump’s tweet leaves open the possibility that others may have recorded their conversations, potentially without permission, such as the Intelligence Community generally or FBI in particular.

The Times report notes that legal experts have said Trump’s initial tweet threatening that tapes existed could serve as part of a potential obstruction of justice case, because the tweet could be construed as pressuring Comey not to reveal details about his and Trump’s conversations relating to the Russia investigation to federal investigators. Others say the threat of existence of tapes suggest Trump was trying to keep Comey honest.

June 16, 2017 – Trump attacks Rosenstein and the expanding Russia probe in a series of tweets:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 23, 2017 – In a Fox television interview, in response to a Fox interviewer suggesting that the possibility of recordings of Comey’s conversations with Trump may have ensured Comey’s honesty in his Senate testimony, Trump says: “Well, it wasn’t very stupid, I can tell you that.” He added that in response to the possibility of Comey’s conversations being recorded, “I think his story may have changed.”

July 8, 2017 – The New York Times reports that Donald Trump Jr. arranged a meeting at Trump Tower with a Kremlin-linked Russian lawyer in June 2016, shortly after his father won the Republican nomination. Campaign manager Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner also attended. Though Trump Jr. initially releases a statement saying the meeting was primarily about an adoption program, emailsreleased later show meeting occurred because Trump Jr. was promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton by the Russian lawyer.

Trump personally dictates a statement for Trump Jr., stating that he and the Russian lawyer “primarily discussed a program about the adoption of Russian children,” and that the subject of the meeting was “not a campaign issue at the time.” These claims are later proven to be false. Before the revelation of the president’s involvement in these deliberations, Trump’s lawyer repeatedly denied Trump was involved in drafting them. Eventually, the White House confirms that Trump “weighed in” on the drafting of the misleading statement.

July 10, 2017 – Trump tweets that Comey illegally leaked classified information to the media:

James Comey leaked CLASSIFIED INFORMATION to the media. That is so illegal!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 10, 2017

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July 19, 2017 – In an interview with the New York Times, Trump says that had he known Sessions was going to recuse himself from the Russia investigation, he would not have nominated him to be Attorney General:

TRUMP: Look, Sessions gets the job. Right after he gets the job, he recuses himself.

BAKER: Was that a mistake?

TRUMP: Well, Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job, and I would have picked somebody else.

Trump repeats that he relied on the Rosenstein letter in deciding to fire Comey:

TRUMP: […] Rosenstein becomes extremely angry because of Comey’s Wednesday press conference, where he said that he would do the same thing he did a year ago with Hillary Clinton, and Rosenstein became extremely angry at that because, as a prosecutor, he knows that Comey did the wrong thing. Totally wrong thing. And he gives me a letter, O.K., he gives me a letter about Comey. And by the way, that was a tough letter, O.K. Now, perhaps I would have fired Comey anyway, and it certainly didn’t hurt to have the letter, O.K.

Trump asserts again that Comey leaked confidential information in his Senate testimony, and oddly suggests that, in their initial meeting, Comey told Trump to “treat Flynn good” (when Comey testified that Trump had asked him to let go of the Flynn investigation):

TRUMP: Comey also says that he did something in order to get the special prose— special counsel. He leaked. The reason he leaked. So, he illegally leaked.

TRUMP: So think of this. [NYT reporter] Mike [L. Schmidt]. He illegally leaks, and everyone thinks it is illegal, and by the way, it looks like it’s classified and all that stuff. So he got — not a smart guy — he got tricked into that, because they didn’t even ask him that question. They asked him another question, O.K.?

________

TRUMP: He said I said “hope” — “I hope you can treat Flynn good” or something like that. I didn’t say anything.

Later in the interview, Trump contends that Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe has a conflict of interest involving Hillary Clinton. Days later, he repeats his claim on Twitter:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Why didn’t A.G. Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, a Comey friend who was in charge of Clinton investigation but got….

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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…big dollars ($700,000) for his wife’s political run from Hillary Clinton and her representatives. Drain the Swamp!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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Jill McCabe, McCabe’s wife, received nearly $500,000 in 2015 campaign donations from a political action committee associated with Va. Gov. Terry McAuliffe during an unsuccessful Virginia Senate run. McAuliffe is close with both Bill and Hillary Clinton.

July 24, 2017 – The New York Times reports that Trump aide and son-in-law Jared Kushner meet with Senate investigators looking into the Russia investigation on the Senate Intelligence Committee. After meeting with investigators behind closed doors, Kushner released a statement to news media: “All of my actions were proper and occurred in the normal course of events of a very unique campaign…I did not collude with Russians, nor do I know of anyone in the campaign who did.” He is the first member of the Trump inner circle to confer with congressional investigators.

July 24–25, 2017 — In a series of early morning tweets, Trump renews his attacks against Sessions.

So why aren’t the Committees and investigators, and of course our beleaguered A.G., looking into Crooked Hillarys crimes & Russia relations?

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 24, 2017

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a VERY weak position on Hillary Clinton crimes (where are E-mails & DNC server) & Intel leakers!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump campaign – “quietly working to boost Clinton.” So where is the investigation A.G. @seanhannity

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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He also repeated his claims regarding McCabe having a conflict of interest with respect to the Clintons:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Aug. 1, 2017 – In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump again berates Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation:

WSJ: He’s the Russian guy. So Sessions has recused himself, but is Bob Mueller’s job safe? There is speculation –

TRUMP: No, we’re going to see. I mean, I have no comment yet, because it’s too early. But we’ll see. We’re going to see. Here’s the good news: I was never involved with Russia. There was nobody in the campaign. I’ve got 200 people that will say that they’ve never seen anybody on the campaign. Here’s another – he was involved early. There’s nobody on the campaign that saw anybody from Russia. We had nothing to do with Russia. They lost an election and they came up with this as an excuse. And the only ones that are laughing are the Democrats and the Russians. They’re the only ones that are laughing. And if Jeff Sessions didn’t recuse himself, we wouldn’t even be talking about this subject.

And Trump further suggests that Sessions’ early campaign endorsement was not a sign of loyalty:

WSJ: Just on Sessions, just one thing. Would you like to see him step aside? Would you like to see him resign? Would it be in the country’s best interest just –

TRUMP: I’m just very disappointed in him. I’m disappointed in, you know, a number of categories. I told you, the leakers. He should have – he should be after them. So many people say to me: Why are they going after you on nothing and they leave Hillary Clinton alone on, you know, really major things? And it is – so I’m disappointed in him. And don’t forget, when they say he endorsed me, I went to Alabama. I had 40,000 people, you may have been there, remember, in Mobile?

WSJ: I remember.

TRUMP: I had 40,000 people. He was the senator from Alabama. I won the state by a lot, massive numbers. A lot of the states I won by massive numbers. But he was a senator. He looks at 40,000 people and he probably says, what do I have to lose, and he endorsed me. So it’s not like a great, loyal thing about the endorsement. But I’m very disappointed in Jeff Sessions.

Aug. 3, 2017 – Vox reports that, in late May, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe told several people in high-level FBI management that they should consider themselves potential witnesses in any potential obstruction of justice investigation involving Trump. He told colleagues that he could also be a potential witness himself.

Aug. 26, 2017 – The Washington Post reports that sometime this past spring, Trump approached AG Sessions and asked whether the DOJ could possibly drop its case against former Maricopa County, Arizona Sherriff Joe Arpaio, whom Trump has long respected. Sessions advised him that it would have been inappropriate to drop the case, after which Trump decided to let the case go to trial and subsequently grant a pardon. Legal experts believe that Trump’s handling of the Arpaio case may be relevant to determining his intent in speaking to Comey about the FBI’s Michael Flynn investigation (“I hope you can let this go”) in an obstruction of justice probe.

Aug. 31, 2017 – The Wall Street Journal reports that Trump’s lawyers have met with Mueller several times in recent months and have submitted several memos to him contending that Trump didn’t obstruct justice by firing Comey and questioning Comey’s reliability as a potential witness.

Sept. 19, 2017 – The Wall Street Journal reports that Mueller’s office interviewed DAG Rosenstein in June or July 2017 about Trump’s removal of Comey. A source told CNN that Rosenstein has no current plans to recuse himself from the investigation, suggesting he does not view himself as a key witness in the obstruction of justice investigation. DOJ Spokesperson Ian Prior released a statement saying, “As the deputy attorney general has said numerous times, if there comes a time when he needs to recuse, he will. However, nothing has changed.”

[Editor’s Note: For more analysis, readers may be interested in: “A Round-Up of Just Security’s Obstruction of Justice Coverage”]

Read on Just Security »

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U.S. investigators are probing whether Russia relied on clandestine American help to identify political soft spots and pressure points in its campaign to disrupt the 2016 election. But experts say that, even without local assistance, Russia’s own 
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?Midland Daily News
Inside Russia’s alliance with white nationalists across the globeThinkProgress

all 31 news articles »

Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch – Patheos (blog)

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Patheos (blog)
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch
Patheos (blog)
It’s the place where Russian oligarchs and organized crime (but I repeat myself), including Putinhimself, launder their money through banks. And guess who was vice chairman of … Trump’sCommerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. While he was on the board of 

and more »

7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Moron’s Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading – FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trump’s America? 

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Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretary Trump’s supposed 2020 reelection effort may be even more fraudulent than previously known  » 10:59 AM 10/15/2017 – The Method To The Moron’s Madness » Palmer Report » Donald Trump: Further reading 16/10/17 01:12 from 1. Trump from mikenova (5 sites) Donald Trump Donald Trump – further … Continue reading “7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Moron’s Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading – FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trump’s America?”

The Early Edition: October 16, 2017 

Trump Investigations Report | Latest Posts

Trump Investigations Report from mikenova (18 sites)
Trump – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News

Fox News
Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’
Fox News
President Trump tweeted Monday that he hopes Crooked Hillary Clinton runs for president again, even as the former secretary of state was telling an Australian media outlet that former FBI Director James Comey gave her the “shiv.” I was recently 
Trump: ‘I hope’ Hillary Clinton runs in 2020Politico
Hillary Clinton warns that Trump may start a nuclear warBusiness Insiderall 111 news articles »

Trump – Google News

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Trump – from Huffington Post

Trump – from Huffington Post from mikenova (2 sites)
Donald Trump: Trump On Gays: Pence Wants To ‘Hang Them All’
A New Yorker article says Trump teases the socially conservative vice president about religion, abortion and gay rights.Donald Trump

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Trump News Review 

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)
Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites): Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV
trump as danger to National Security – Google News: Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)
Just Security: National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
analysis of trump electorate – Google News: The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: The Week That Will Be
FBI politicization – Google News: Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
trump under federal investigation – Google News: Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour
Trump and the Mob – Google News: No, There’s No Excuse for ‘Conservative’ Shout-Downs – National Review
Just Security: Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events
crime and terror – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)
organized crime and terrorism – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)
putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Yahoo: Russian trolls watched ‘House of Cards’ to learn about US politics – CNN
Rudy Giuliani – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News
Trump – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News
1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites): Rudy Giuliani – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News
Russian Intelligence services – Google News: Taliban admit Russia’s support, claims British newspaper – Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)
trump and russia – Google News: Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena – Bloomberg
Trump and Russia – Google News: Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena – Bloomberg
donald trump russia – Google News: Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena – ABC News
2016 elections and mental health – Google News: Baldacci, Faircloth won’t seek re-election to Bangor council – Bangor Daily News

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Saved Stories – 1. Trump
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch – Patheos (blog)
7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trumps America?
Dissident on Trump era: ‘China, Russia, they all laugh about it’ – The Hill (blog)
The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
In Puerto Rico, Tesla is Doing What Donald Trump Isn’tFixing it – Newsweek
The Health 202: Trump has badly undercut his own administration on Puerto Rico – Washington Post
Gay conservatives shocked that the Trump Administration is anti-LGBT – LGBTQ Nation
Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained – Vox
9:02 AM 10/16/2017 Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton The Guardian
Idea of Islamic State gaining even while territory is lost – UPI.com
9:17 AM 10/16/2017 Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell
Trump reportedly mocks Mike Pence’s ultraconservative views, once joking that he ‘wants to hang’ all gay people – Business Insider
Heres the Memo the Kremlin-Linked Lawyer Took to the Meeting With Donald Trump Jr. – Foreign Policy (blog)
Ukraine’s ‘Most Wanted’ Oligarch – Forbes
9:52 AM 10/16/2017 Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained
Mexican Border State Authorities Probing Assassination of Intel Agent – Breitbart News
Trump On Gays: Pence Wants To ‘Hang Them All’
Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena – ABC News
Taliban admit Russia’s support, claims British newspaper – Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)
Microsoft Email-Access Fight With US Gets Supreme Court Review – Bloomberg
Trump to meet Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, accused of extrajudicial killings, during Asian visit
The deadly ambush Donald Trump hasn’t yet acknowledged – MSNBC

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1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)
Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: Don’t Reform Section 702 Just for the Sake of Reform
Last week on our Foreign Policy feed, we wrote about how the USA Liberty Act, which is the House Judiciary Committee’s proposal to reauthorize the Section 702 surveillance program, takes for granted that a “clean reauthorization” is impossible and imposes reforms for the sake of reform. The piece begins:What happens when you start with panicky civil libertarians, sprinkle in some right-wing conspiracy theories about unmasking intelligence, and polish it off with a healthy dose of congressional dysfunction and a self-imposed legislative deadline? You get bad surveillance policy in the name of reform. Dont look now, but thats whats shaping up in Congress at this moment.

In a little less than three months, Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which authorizes the government to monitor, without an individualized warrant, the communications of non-U.S. persons reasonably believed to be overseas is set to expire. Section 702 is a very big deal; it cannot be allowed to expire for any length of time without real damage to ongoing intelligence operations. So the closer we get to the sunset, the more opportunity there is to include mischievous reforms that the intelligence community simply has to accept everyone knows the intelligence community would rather take some very bitter pills than lose a program it needs to accomplish its mission.

Last week, the House Judiciary Committee introduced legislation to reauthorize the 702 authority, but it included a number of changes including a few that are quite significant. No, this bill isnt the worst thing in the world. The sky isnt falling. And plenty of other proposals to reform 702 would inflict far more serious harms than this one would. But its not a good bill either. It would make the FBIs job harder for no good reason. It responds to imagined risks, rather than real abuses.

The Judiciary Committee bill is the product of an endeavor that was flawed from the outset. Its drafters were operating from the apparent premise that while 702 is a critical national security authority that must be preserved, a clean reauthorization of it without changes is currently a political impossibility. Why is that? Liberals and civil libertarians have always had anxieties about 702. Libertarian conservatives and tea party types have more recently joined the fray. Over the last year, the fraudulent unmasking controversy most of which has nothing to do with 702 has stoked these anxieties. And lots of people have instinctive difficulty vesting powerful authorities in the hands of the intelligence community under President Donald Trump. The House Judiciary Committee is one of the Houses more polarized committees, so the apparent goal was to thread the needles and draft a bipartisan bill that might satisfy calls for reform while minimizing operational impacts. And if it passes the Judiciary Committee, the bill has a good chance to become law.

If you accept the premise that precluded a clean reauthorization, the committees bill is a decent though far from perfect effort.

We dont accept the premise, however, but start with a different one: This is an already dense and complicated area of law in which it is tough for national security operators to do their jobs. To make it denser and more complicated, you need a reason. Reform for reforms sake is not a good enough reason to add complexity.

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices

1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites): Putin Trump – Google News: UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands – WILX-TV

WILX-TV
UPDATE – Putin halts North Korea ties in line with UN demands
WILX-TV
The White House said that in South Korea, Trump will meet with President Moon Jae-in and “call on the international community to join together in maximizing pressure on North Korea.” In Japan, Trump will meet with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and 
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US electionAxios
Vladimir Putin’s bored — life is too easyUPI.com
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?The Conversation US
Express.co.uk
all 31 news articles »

Putin Trump – Google News

1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites)

trump as danger to National Security – Google News: Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq – The Independent (blog)

The Independent (blog)
Donald Trump risks repeating the errors made in the run up to the invasion of Iraq
The Independent (blog)
But the language that Mr Trump is using is dangerous, just as the language he is using about North Korea is verydangerous, things can get out of control. And we have a situation where Trump is refusing to accept what the UN is saying that Iran is and more »

trump as danger to National Security – Google News

Just Security: National Security-Related Congressional Hearings, October 16-21
Just Security

Tuesday, October 17

10:00am Senate Committee of the Judiciary Nominations: Gregory G. Katsas to be United States Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia Circuit; Jeffrey Uhlman Beaverstock to be United States District Judge for the Southern District of Alabama; Emily Coody Marks to be United States District Judge for the Middle District of Alabama; Brett Joseph Talley to be United States District Judge for the Middle District of Alabama; Holly Lou Teeter to be United States District Judge for the District of Kansas (here)

2:30pm Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Nomination of Christopher Sharpley to be Inspector General of the Central Intelligence Agency (here)

Wednesday, October 18

10:00am Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Nominations: Jeff T.H. Pon to be Director of the Office of Personnel Management; Michael J. Rigas to be Deputy Director of the Office of Personnel Management; Emily W. Murphy to be Administrator of the General Services Administration (here)

10:00am Senate Committee of the Judiciary Oversight of the U.S. Department of Justice (here)

2:30pm Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Nominations: Mr. Thomas L. Carter of South Carolina for the Rank of Ambassador during his Tenure of Service as Representative of the United States of America on the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization; Ms. Jennifer Gillian Newstead of New York to be Legal Adviser of the Department of State; Ms. Manisha Singh of Florida to be an Assistant Secretary Of State (Economic And Business Affairs) (here)

2:30pm Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Federal Spending Oversight and Emergency Management Subcommittee Broken Beakers: Federal Support for Research (here)

 

Thursday, October 19

9:30am Senate Committee on Armed Services Roles and Responsibilities for Defending the Nation from Cyber Attack (here)

10:30am Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Modernizing the Food for Peace Program (here)

Read on Just Security »

Just Security

analysis of trump electorate – Google News: The apprentice president – Emporia Gazette
The apprentice president
Emporia Gazette
A New York Times analysis concludes that Trump and his heirs would enjoy a $1.1 billion windfall under his tax plan. Fairy dust has infected the administration’s … “Donald Trump got elected with minority support from the American electorate, and most and more »

analysis of trump electorate – Google News

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: The Week That Will Be
Event Announcements (More details on the Events Calendar)Tuesday, October 17 at 10:00 am: The New America Foundation will hold an event with the American Bar Associations Standing Committee on Law and National Security and Pitt Cyber titled Old Laws and New Technology: How Can We Keep Up? Former U.S. Attorney Paul Hickton will give the keynote address. A panel featuring Paul Cohen, Harvey Rishikof, Ian Wallace, and Kiersten Todt will follow. RSVP.

Tuesday, October 17 at 3:30 pm: The Georgetown Laws Center on National Security and the Law will host an event on Unpacking the Trump-Russia Investigations. Carol Bruce, Mieke Eoyang, Adam Entous and M. Tia Johnson will take part in a panel discussion. RSVP here and see more details here.

Wednesday, October 18 at 10:00 am: The Center for Strategic and International Studies will host a book talk on Lawrence Freedmans The Future of War: A History. Kathleen Hicks and Mark Moyar will discuss the book with Freedman. Register or watch the live webcast.

Wednesday, October 18 at 10:00 am: Attorney General Jeff Sessions will testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee at a Department of Justice oversight hearing. Location: Hart Senate Office Building 216. More details hereLawfare will post a livestream of the hearing.

Thursday, October 19 at 4:30 pm: Lawfare and the Brookings Institution will host a screening of the documentary Icarus followed by a discussion on What Icarus Tells Us about Russias Meddling in International Affairs. Director Bryan Fogel will join a panel with producer Dan Cogan, Benjamin Wittes, Strobe Talbott, and Julia Ioffe. Register to attend.

 

Employment Announcements (More details on the Job Board)

 

Cyber Initiative and Special Projects Fellow, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is seeking a Cyber Initiative and Special Projects Fellow, a three-year fixed term position, to be based in Menlo Park, California.

About the Foundation

The Hewlett Foundation is a nonpartisan, private charitable foundation that advances ideas and supports institutions to promote a better world. For 50 years, the foundation has supported efforts to advance education for all, preserve the environment, improve lives and livelihood in developing countries, promote the health and economic well-being of women, support vibrant performing arts, strengthen Bay Area communities, and make the philanthropy sector more effective. The Hewlett Foundations assets are more than $9 billion with annual awards of grants totaling more than $400 million. More information about the Hewlett Foundation is available at: www.hewlett.org.

About the Position

As the job title suggests, the Cyber Initiative and Special Projects Program Fellow will play an integral role in two distinct grantmaking efforts housed in the foundation Presidents office.

The fellow will work closely with the Program Officer for The Cyber Initiative, who will provide the fellow with direction on the Initiatives grantmaking activities. Launched in March 2014, the goal of the Initiative (and its $70 million grantmaking budget) is to build a capable field of cyber policy experts and expertise. The Cyber Initiative takes a broad view of cyber policy to include issues ranging from encryption to net neutrality to Internet governance to cyber conflict. Moreover, the 2016 election dramatically raised awareness about cybersecurity and democratic institutionshighlighting new needs, but also creating new opportunities.

Working directly with Foundation President, Larry Kramer, the fellow will help shape and implement grantmaking for the Special Projects portfolio. Special Projects grants are diverse ranging from support for public broadcasting to exploration of artificial intelligence and the future of work — sometimes ad hoc, and require nimble and thoughtful attention to detail and execution. They strive to promote internal collaboration between different foundation programs, external collaboration with other funders, and/or discrete opportunities outside of the foundations core interest areas.

This position presents a unique opportunity to engage in both the strategic and tactical aspects of grantmaking under the Cyber Initiative and Special Projects program. As such, the fellow must be comfortable working across a changing and evolving landscape of work and juggling multiple projects at the same time.

The broad goals and responsibilities for the fellow are:

  • Partner with the Cyber Initiative team to implement the Initiatives strategy, evaluate potential grantees, suggest new grant awards to the Foundation president and board, and manage its grants portfolio.
  • Work with the Cyber Initiative team to evaluate the effectiveness of its grantmaking, monitor its progress, and recommend strategy improvements.
  • Work with the foundation president to plan and execute Special Projects grants.
  • Manage the Special Projects budget, tracking all active and planned grants and other funding commitments.
  • Manage relationships and communications with grantees and serve as their primary point of contact.
  • Represent the foundation at meetings with key stakeholders from civil society, government, the private sector, and academia.
  • Attend and represent the foundation at external events, including speaking on panels.
  • Follow the cyber policy debate globally, stay abreast of trends and developments, and identify new opportunities for the foundations grant-making.
  • Travel to conduct site visits and attend conferences.

Professional Qualifications and Personal Attributes

Candidates should exhibit the following professional qualifications and personal attributes:

Professional Experience:

  • An undergraduate or advanced degree as appropriate in law, policy, business, computer science, engineering, or related disciplines (preferred).
  • Demonstrated interest and work experience in areas relevant to the Cyber Initiative.
  • Excellent research and critical thinking skills and ability to conceptualize, think creatively, and thoughtfully approach assigned projects.
  • Demonstrated capability to process and present complex information (both quantitative and qualitative) in a compelling manner both orally and in writing.
  • Proficiency with technology tools and applications including MS Office.
  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills.
  • Willingness and interest in work travel to conduct site visits and participate in relevant conferences and meetings.

Personal Attributes:

  • Possess an open-minded curiosity and willingness to carry out both substantive and administrative tasks.
  • Passionate commitment to the values and mission of the Hewlett Foundation.
  • Poise and comfort representing the foundation externally and engaging a diverse array of partner organizations.
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to pay attention to details, along with a demonstrated track record of consistently meeting deadlines.
  • Independent initiative, a sense of humor, and a collegial spirit in sharing ideas and receiving feedback. Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively.
  • Personal integrity, excellent judgment and flexibility.
  • Outstanding communication and interpersonal skills.

Compensation

Compensation for the Fellow, Presidents Office includes a competitive salary, and an excellent package of health and other employee benefits.

Physical Demands/Work Environment

The physical demands described are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this position, the employee is regularly required to sit for extended periods of time and to travel via various modes of transportation for extended periods of time.

To Apply:

Interested candidates should submit a resume and cover letter responding specifically to the experience and qualifications being sought to: Daniel Sherman, President, Explore Company at resumes@explorecompany.com. Refer to Hewlett/SPF in the subject line. No phone inquiries please.

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is an equal opportunity employer and invites individuals who bring a diversity of culture, experience and ideas to apply.

All correspondence will remain confidential.

Legal Intern – International Humanitarian Law (Spring and Summer 2018), The International Committee of the Red Cross

FUNCTION DESCRIPTION

Intern International Humanitarian Law

OBJECTIVE:  The Intern in the IHL Department at the Washington Regional Delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) provides research and writing on topics of IHL, other branches of international law, and U.S. law as needed, thus contributing to the thematic and operational priorities of the legal team.

Minimum required knowledge & experience:

  • Basic knowledge of IHL and a related legal field (e.g. National Security or Human Rights Law).
  • Excellent oral and written English skills, good understanding of French an asset
  • Currently pursuing a U.S. J.D. or LLM degree (or JD graduate pursuing another graduate degree)
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents (student work permits are excluded)

JOB DESCRIPTION

Main Responsibilities

Work with the IHL team to provide legal advice to the delegation in Washington, and to the ICRC as a whole on matters of IHL, human rights law, national security law, or other U.S. legal issues.

  1. Research and Writing. Research such topics as scope of application of IHL, detention, conduct of hostilities, cyber/new technology and weapons, and other related topics.  Possibility of authoring articles or other short pieces for the ICRCs U.S. blog (intercrossblog.icrc.org).
  2. Monitor Legal Developments Regular monitoring of legal blogs and news coverage to identify significant legal developments of interest to the delegation.  In addition to research, the intern will attend conferences and meetings in order to monitor developments on specific legal issues on behalf of the legal team.
  3. Reporting. Regular and timely reporting and analysis on meetings and events attended, as well as a weekly report on any relevant legal developments reported in external sources such as legal blogs.  Reports are written for the purpose of ensuring the institution is informed of developments in U.S. policy, as well as to advance its thinking on key issues.

Management and Reporting Line. The IHL Intern reports directly to the IHL Legal Advisor.  He/she is expected to collaborate with colleagues throughout the delegation in order to carry out these and other reasonably related duties.

For the spring semster, the intern will be expected to work 20 hours a week for 12 weeks between January and May. For the summer, the intern will be expected to work 40 hours a week for 12 weeks between May and August. Starting and ending date are negotiable.  This is a paid internship.  For information about the position, please contact Andrea Harrison at anharrison@icrc.org.  To apply, please send CV and optional cover letter to Mackenzie Chernushin at mchernushin@icrc.org. Applications are due October 31, 2017.

Congressional Nuclear Security Fellowship, Nuclear Security Working Group at the George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs

The Nuclear Security Working Group at the George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs is seeking applications for its 2018-2019 Congressional Nuclear Security Fellowship program.

Fellows will spend one year (January 2018 January 2019) working in a designated House or Senate office. Stipends range from $45,000 to $80,000 depending on qualifications. We will award up to six Fellowships this year.

Fellows duties will include supporting the priorities and activities of House and Senate offices and organizing bipartisan briefings and events on timely national and nuclear security issues for Members and staff. Fellows will also help develop relationships with the broader security policy community for their respective offices.

This is an excellent opportunity for promising scholars and policy practitioners who may be transitioning to mid-career or for any outstanding professional seeking to contribute to and gain valuable experience in the legislative branch.

Details about eligibility requirements and instructions about how to apply are available on the NSWG website at this link: http://nuclearsecurityworkinggroup.org/nuclear-security-working-group-congressional-fellowship-now-accepting-applications/.

Please help us circulate this information about this important opportunity to your friends and colleagues. We much appreciate your help in identifying and encouraging exceptional candidates.

Applications will be accepted until October 31, 2017. Finalists will be interviews in person. Fellows must be ready to begin work by early January 2018 and must be willing to commit for a full calendar year.

Any questions should be directed to nswg@email.gwu.edu.

Markle Director for Policy (Rework America Task Force)

Background

A defining challenge of our time is ensuring that all Americans are included in the benefits of the digital economy as automation and technology transform the workforce in unprecedented fashion. After more than a decade of work in health and national security, the Markle Foundation created Skillful, an initiative with LinkedIn, the state of Colorado and others to create a skills-based labor market. Launched in 2016, Skillful is centered on the skills job seekers have, not the degrees. Skillful is enabling Americans, including the nearly seven out of 10 American adults who do not have a college degree, to learn the skills needed for todays rapidly changing jobs. To learn more see www.Skillful.com.

Building on Skillfuls progress, Markles Rework America Task Force will be a national-level, non-partisan and multi-stakeholder effort to drive clear policy objectives and initiatives to support a skills-based labor market. It will serve as an incubator for fresh ideas, new collaborations, shovel-ready proposals and proliferation of best practices including leveraging data to bring transparency to the labor market. Ideas from the task force will be offered to help inform the actions of federal and state policymakers, employers, technology providers and other influential labor market players. We intend for the Task Force to engage in and support the much-needed broad-based, long-term national conversation about how the technological revolution can serve all Americans in the new economy.

Job Summary and Responsibilities

The Director for Policy will be responsible for providing the Rework America Task Force chair, Task Force members and associated Working Groups with substantive guidance and policy advice surrounding U.S. labor market trends, related impacts of automation and technological advancements, workforce management, worker education and upskilling, and employer matching with needed skilled labor. The incumbent will drive deliverables from the Task Force that will support the Task Force mission of enabling all Americans continued access to the American Dream. The principal responsibilities include:

  • Participate in developing the substantive underpinnings for Task Force objectives. Prepare materials, engage experts, supervise work product development and deliverables.
  • Provide advice and assistance to the RATF Chair, in the form of written products, research, articles for publication and RATF meeting materials, as directed.
  • Provide policy expertise and substantive direction to RATF Working Groups, guiding their outputs consistent with the goals of the RATF generally and the RATF Chair, specifically.
  • Conduct outreach to experts, policymakers, and other relevant actors to inform RATF objectives and outcomes.
  • Support preparation for the Task Force meetings and those of its associated Advisory Board.
  • Collaborate with Task Force staff and contractors as necessary to ensure appropriate subject matter expertise is available to Task Force members and Working Groups.
  • Support the development of materials and deliverables for multiple convenings both in person and virtually in terms of timeliness milestones, interdependencies and other elements.
  • Identify opportunities for the Task Force to engage in the national debate surrounding the future of work and ways to incentivize change in the U.S. labor market.

Required Competencies

  • Substantive knowledge of workforce, labor market and related national-level policy issues
  • Possesses strong organization skills, with ability to multitask and manage several work streams, partners / vendors, and projects at any one time
  • Writing: Demonstrated ability to write clearly and concisely for a variety of audiences.
  • Active learner: Positive attitude with an openness and willingness to learn. Demonstrates ability to receive and apply feedback and continues to improve.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills: Emanates a collaborative demeanor that builds rapport and establishes credibility with partners. Applies critical interpersonal and judgment skills to affect outcomes. Has complete comfort and confidence in offering helpful advice and counsel to colleagues at all levels. Is a team player.
  • Communication skills: Demonstrated ability to clearly convey summary data from multiple sources as a set of findings. Comfortable speaking in public settings.

Preferred Competencies:

  • General professional experience: 10-20 years of working experience
  • Experience in leading multi-sector collaborative processes including development of specific, actionable recommendations, such as policy proposal, pilot projects, impact assessments, etc.
  • Displays an intellectual curiosity and passion for the mission at hand.
  • Analytics experience: Ability to summarize detailed data, identify trends, and draw insights from the data. Able to make recommendations based on conclusions.
  • Demonstrated ability to thrive and lead in a small, analytically rigorous organization that values direct, honest, and respectful transfer of ideas.
  • Entrepreneurial mindset: Possesses a natural instinct to seek out the next challenge and think outside constraints and get things done. Operates with a clear sense of purpose while being comfortable with ambiguity and change.

Job Details

  • Location: New York, NY or Washington, D.C.
  • Title: Director
  • Report: Senior Principal
  • Status: Full-time
  • Salary: Competitive
  • Travel: Moderate
  • Degree or credential Requirements:  None.
  • Markle is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.  All applicants receive consideration for employment without regard to race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender expression age, physical or mental ability, veteran status, military obligations and marital status.
  • Applying: Please submit cover letter and resume to: DirPolicy-RATF@markle.org

Markle

The Rework America Task Force and Skillful are projects of the Markle Foundation (www.markle.org), whose mission is to identify intractable problems, invest seed capital to incubate and test solutions, harness the power of technology and innovation, and build strategic partnerships to achieve scale and generate broad social impact. While Markles work has evolved through the years, its mission to meet the needs of the American people has endured. Currently, Markle is engaged in a nationwide initiative aimed at driving innovations that expand opportunities for employment and broaden ways for all Americans to learn and train for the work of the future.

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices

FBI politicization – Google News: Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy – The Ledger
Opinion: We must stop politicizing tragedy
The Ledger
Perhaps the most famous case in the past two decades is the Patriot Act. Shortly after 9/11, congress implemented and passed the Patriot Act. This act allowed three-letter agencies such as the NSA or the FBI to expand their power and ability to

FBI politicization – Google News

trump under federal investigation – Google News: Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers – PBS NewsHour

PBS NewsHour
Supreme Court to intervene over privacy of Trump administration, emails and Microsoft servers
PBS NewsHour
In 2013, federal investigators obtained a warrant under a 1986 law for emails from an account they believe was being used in illegal drug transactions as well as identifying information about the user of the email account. Microsoft turned over the 
Justices to Hear Government’s Email Dispute With MicrosoftU.S. News & World Report
Supreme Court to consider major digital privacy case on Microsoft email storageWashington Postall 34 news articles »

trump under federal investigation – Google News

Trump and the Mob – Google News: No, There’s No Excuse for ‘Conservative’ Shout-Downs – National Review

National Review
No, There’s No Excuse for ‘Conservative’ Shout-Downs
National Review
As Stanley Kurtz noted on Friday, pro-Trump protesters shouted-down California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and California State Assembly Leader Ian Calderon during an appearance at California’s Whittier College. This is a terrible development. Thus and more »

Trump and the Mob – Google News

Just Security: Timeline of Trump and Obstruction of Justice: Key Dates and Events
Artin Afkhami

Did President Donald Trump or other U.S. officials engage in an obstruction of justice with respect to the Russia investigation? There are three scenarios which raise that question. Its important to keep each of them in mind as one thinks about incriminating and exculpatory information, and patterns of related behavior.

Before setting out each scenario and then the Timeline, it may bear reminding that under U.S. federal criminal law, the definition of obstruction of justice includes anyone who corruptly or by any threatening letter or communication endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede a criminal investigation. According to the U.S. Attorneys Manual, even a mere attempt to pursue those ends is enough for obstruction, regardless of whether the attempt succeeds. The criminal standard matters if prosecutors were ever to consider pressing charges while Trump is President (a period in which he may be immune from indictment) or after he leaves office. The federal definition could also serve as a background for impeachment proceedings, although Congress would not be tied to the strict definitions of existing criminal law. Finally, there is always the court of public opinion.

What are the three scenarios that prosecutors, members of Congress, and the public could consider under the heading of obstruction of justice?

First, any attempts to unlawfully have FBI Director James Comey drop the investigation of Michael Flynn Second, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with FBI or congressional investigations into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials during the 2016 election Third, any attempts to unlawfully interfere with the FBI or congressional investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election (having nothing to do with any alleged collusion)It is also important to keep in mind that one form of obstruction may be in getting officials to drop an investigation (which is very difficult to ever pick back up) and another form may be in firing officials with authority over the investigation.

The following is a Timeline of events that could be relevant to considerations of the obstruction of justice. It adheres as much as possible to the most directly relevant information, but also includes some other evidence that may be relevant to investigators who are looking for patterns of behavior (for example, Trumps treatment of Preet Bharara).

Timeline

Late July 2016 According to the New York Times and later confirmed by former FBI Director James Comey, the FBI begins investigating the Russian governments attempts to interfere with the 2016 U.S. election. The investigation includes examining whether Donald Trumps presidential campaign was connected to those efforts. The catalyst for the FBI investigation includes Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Pages trip to Moscow to deliver a pro-Russia foreign policy speech at a prestigious Russian institute that same month.

Dec. 29, 2016 In retaliation for Russian interference in the election, the Obama administration ordersthe expulsion of Russian intelligence agents and imposes new sanctions on Russian state agencies and individuals suspected of hacking U.S. computer systems. The CIA and FBI had previously concluded that Russia had interfered in the election multiple times including leaking damaging information to assist the Trump campaign.

Jan. 6, 2017 According to Senate testimony by James Comey, he first meets Trump at Trump Tower on this date as part of an Intelligence Community assessment briefing on Russian election interference. After the meeting ends, Comey meets with Trump privately and assures Trump he is not beingpersonally investigated. He writes a memo about the meeting after he returns to his car. Later testifying to Congress Comey says, I was honestly concerned that he might lie about the nature of our meeting, and so I thought it really important to document.

Jan. 6, 2017 The New York Times reports that the IC concluded in its assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a campaign to influence the outcome of the 2016 election, initially seeking to weaken Hillary Clinton, but later developing a clear preference for Trump. The Times reports that at the IC assessment meeting earlier that morning, Trump responded by acknowledging, for the first time, that Russia had sought to hack into the Democratic National Committees computer systems,but asserted that these activities did not influence the elections outcome, and he did not address the IC conclusion that Putin had favored his campaign.

Jan. 19, 2017 The New York Times first reports that U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies are conducting a counterintelligence investigation into links between Russian officials and Trump associates. The investigation centers partly on past business dealings between Trump advisers and Russia. The FBI is leading the investigation, alongside the CIA, NSA, and the Treasury Departments financial crimes unit. The associates under investigation include former campaign manager Paul Manafort and advisers Carter Page and Roger Stone.

Jan. 27, 2017 According to Comeys testimony, Trump invites Comey to what he believes will be a group dinner at the White House, but which turns out to be a private dinner meeting with the then-FBI Director. Trump asks whether Comey wants to remain FBI Director, and Comey responds affirmatively. During the dinner, Trump repeatedly tells Comey that he needs loyalty, and Comey responds, You will always get honesty from me. Trump responds, Thats what I want, honest loyalty. Comey responds, You will get that from me, hoping to end the conversation. Comey later testifies to Congress that, given the one-on-one nature of the meeting and the substance of their talk, Comey believed the dinner was in part an effort to create a patronage relationship.

Feb. 13, 2017 National Security Advisor Michael Flynn resigns after revelations that he misled Vice President Mike Pence and other administration officials about a conversation with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in December 2017 about U.S. sanctions against Russia.

Feb. 14, 2017 According to Comeys Senate testimony, Comey and other IC leaders deliver a counter-terrorism briefing at the Oval Office. Trump signals the end of the briefing by thanking everyone and saying he wanted to meet with Comey privately. Trump tells Comey, I want to talk about Mike Flynn, adding that Flynn had not done anything wrong, but had to resign because he misled Pence. Trump then tells Comey, I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go. Comey later testifies that he had understood the President to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn in connection with false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December.

Immediately after the meeting, Comey prepared a memo of the communication and presented the issue to FBI senior leadership. Comey interpreted Trumps communication as a direction to drop the FBI investigation as it related to Flynns alleged false statements about his meetings with the Russian Ambassador in December 2016.

The FBI leadership team and Comey believed that it was important not to infect the investigative team with Trumps request, and decided to refuse the directive. The team concluded it would not have made sense to disclose Trumps request to Sessions, who had recused himself from the Russia investigation, or the Deputy AG, who was soon to be replaced. They believed it was best to keep the communication closely held, although they might decide to disclose it to other officials as the investigation progressed.

Shortly thereafter, Comey also met with Sessions and told him that what had just happened   him being asked to leave while the FBI Director, who reports to the AG, remained behind was inappropriate and should never happen. He said he implored Sessions to ensure that no further private communications occur between Trump and himself. Nevertheless, he did not disclose the content of Trumps request regarding dropping the Flynn investigation.

In his written statement for the Senate, Comey said the Attorney General did not reply and then told Senators in open session that Sessions was just kind of looking at me and his body language gave me a sense like, What am I going to do?

In his own testimony before the Senate, Sessions said Comeys account was incorrect and said, I did affirm the long-standing written policies of the Department of Justice concerning communications with the White House.

Mar. 2, 2017 Sessions announces that he is recusing himself from any investigations into charges that Russia meddled in the 2016 election. Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente takes over the Russia investigation following Sessions recusal.

Mar. 9, 2017 Trumps assistant calls U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bhararas office and leaves a message asking Bharara to call Trump back. Trumps direct communication request violates protocols governing presidential contact with federal prosecutors. Bharara notifies an adviser to AG Sessions of the presidential contact, and tells him he will not respond because of the protocol violation. Bharara then calls Trumps assistant to say that he cannot speak with the president directly because of the protocol violation.

Mar. 10, 2017 Trump orders Bharara and 46 other U.S. Attorneys appointed by Barack Obama to resign. The request surprises Bhararas office because in November, he had met with Trump and advisers including Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner at Trump Tower, and Trump had personally asked him to stay in the position. Bharara publicly refuses to resign.

Mar. 11, 2017 Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente calls Bharara and tells him that he is one of the 46 U.S. Attorneys being asked to resign. Bharara tells him that he is interpreting that as being fired, and Boente repeats that he is being asked to resign.

Bharara tweets that afternoon that he has just been fired by Trump:

I did not resign. Moments ago I was fired. Being the US Attorney in SDNY will forever be the greatest honor of my professional life.

— Preet Bharara (@PreetBharara) March 11, 2017

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Because Bharara served as U.S. attorney of the S.D.N.Y., his jurisdiction included Trump Tower, and he would likely have known whether Trump Tower had been wiretapped by federal investigators as Trump claimed, as well as other Tower-related information potentially relevant to the Russia investigation, or to any other investigations involving the finances or other activities of Trump and his companies.

Mar. 20, 2017 In testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, Comey confirms that the FBI is investigating whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Russian efforts to influence the 2016 election. He also dismisses Trumps claims that President Obama wiretapped him during the presidential campaign.

Mar. 22, 2017 The Washington Post reports that Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and other senior officials participate in an Oval Office briefing, after which Trump asks Coats and CIA Director Mike Pompeo to stay for a private meeting. Trump complains to them about Comeys handling of the Russia investigation and asks them to intervene with Comey to get the FBI to stop investigating Flynn.

After the meeting, Coats discusses Trumps request with other officials and decides that against Trumps requests to issue a public statement and to intervene with Comey regarding Flynn, believing both would be inappropriate.

A day or two after Mar. 22, 2017 Shortly after the Mar. 22 meeting, Trump reportedly makes separate telephone calls to both Coats and NSA Director Adm. Michael Rogers and requests that they issue public statements denying the existence of any evidence of collusion between Trump officials and the Russian government. Both officials view the requests as inappropriate and refuse.

Then Deputy Director of the NSA Richard Ledgett writes an internal NSA memo documenting Trumps conversation with Rogers. During the call, Trump questions the accuracy of the IC Assessment that Russia had interfered with the election, in addition to trying to convince Rogers to issue a public statement.

In addition to Trumps requests, senior White House officials separately requested that top intelligence officials consider the possibility of intervening with Comey directly to have the FBI withdraw its probe of Flynn. Their lines of questioning included: Can we ask him to shut down the investigation? Are you able to assist in this matter?

Mar. 30, 2017 According to Comeys Senate testimony, on this date, Trump calls Comey at his office and tells Comey that the Russia investigation is a cloud inhibiting his ability to act as President. Trump assures Comey that he has had nothing to do with Russia and asks Comey what he can do to lift the cloud. Comey responds that the FBI is investigating the matter as quickly as it can, and that a full investigation is in Trumps best interests.

Trump then asks about why Comey had confirmed the FBI investigation into coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign at a Congressional hearing, and Comey explains that he was responding to Congressional leaders demands. Comey explains that he has briefed those leaders on who exactly the FBI is investigating and informed them that Trump is not personally under investigation. Trump repeatedly urges Comey to get the fact that he himself is not under investigation out to the public.

Comey later testifies to the Senate that the FBI and DOJ were reluctant to make a public statement that they did not have an open case on Trump for a number of reasons, most importantly because it would create a duty to correct, should that change.

Mar. 30, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Mike Flynn has informed the FBI and congressional officials of his willingness to be interviewed by House and Senate investigators as part of the investigation into Trump campaign ties to Russia, in exchange for immunity from prosecution. Flynns lawyer released a statement confirming only that discussions with Congressional investigators were taking place, though it concluded: no reasonable person, who has the benefit of advice from counsel, would submit to questioning in such a highly politicized, witch-hunt environment without assurances against unfair prosecution. The New York Times reports that congressional officials are unwilling to make a deal with Flynn until they are further along in their inquiries and have a better idea of the information Flynn might offer.

Mar. 31, 2017 Trump applauds Flynns request for immunity, tweeting:

Mike Flynn should ask for immunity in that this is a witch hunt (excuse for big election loss), by media & Dems, of historic proportion!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 31, 2017

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Apr. 11, 2017 According to Comeys testimonyTrump calls Comey again and asks what he has done about Trumps request to publicize the fact that he is not personally under investigation. Comey tells Trump that he relayed Trumps request to Acting Deputy AG Dana Boente but that he has not heard back. Trump reiterates that the cloud is interfering with his ability to act as President, and asks whether he should have his staff contact Boente. Comey advises Trump of the traditional channel, which is for White House Counsel to contact DOJ leadership to make such requests. Trump says he will do so and tells Comey, Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.Comey responds by reiterating that the proper channel for Trumps request is for Trump to follow the DOJ chain of command. Trump agrees and ends the call.

Comey testifies that in light of Trumps requests, Our our absolute primary concern was, we cant infect the investigative team. We dont want the agents and analysts working on this to know the president of the United States has has asked and when it comes from the president, I took it as a direction to get rid of this investigation, because were not going to follow that that request.

Apr. 25, 2017 Rod Rosenstein is confirmed as Deputy AG by the Senate and will serve as the official overseeing the Russia investigation in light of Sessions recusal. Rosenstein told Senators he would handle it the way I would handle any investigation, adding: I dont know the details of what, if any, investigation is ongoing, but I can certainly assure you if its America against Russia, or America against any other country, I think everyone in this room knows which side Im on.

May 8, 2017 According to the New York Times, Trump summons VP Pence, his chief of staff, top lawyers, and other senior advisors to the Oval Office and informs them that he plans to get rid of Comey, showing them an at least four-page letter, singe-spaced consisting of a long-running series of thoughts on why Comey should be fired that Trump dictated to aide Stephen Miller. The draft criticizes Comey for failing to publicly disclose that Trump was not personally under investigation and for his handling of both the Russia and Clinton email investigations.

White House Counsel Donald McGahn opposes the letter as problematic in multiple ways. His objections include the letters angry tone and its references to private conversations between Trump and Comey. He successfully convinces Trump not to use the draft. Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein then composes his own letter, which becomes a central part of the administrations public rationale for the removal. The New York Times reports that Mr. Sessions had been charged with coming up with reasons to fire him, according to administration officials.

May 8, 2017 Trump implicitly accuses former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates of leaking classified information in a tweet. Because Yates was scheduled to testify on the Flynn investigation before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee later in May, and because she had previously warned the White House that Flynn might have been compromised, this tweet could provide supporting evidence for an attempt to intimidate a witness in the Flynn investigation.

Ask Sally Yates, under oath, if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. Counsel.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 8, 2017

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May 9, 2017 Trump fires Comey from his post as FBI Director, removing the nations top law enforcement official while he was leading a criminal investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government to influence the 2016 election as well as an investigation into former NSA Adviser Michael Flynn for potentially making a false statement to the FBI. The firing raised questions about political interference in an ongoing criminal investigation that could implicate Trump and his top advisers.

In the official announcement, Trump cites letters written by AG Sessions and DAG Rosenstein that recommend [Comeys] dismissal, adding that he has accepted their recommendation and therefore is terminating Comey. The letters largely deal with the Clinton email investigation, and Trump also publicly cites Comeys handling of the Clinton investigation in announcing the change. However, Trumps letter also references the Russia investigation and Comeys actions toward Trump personally: While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the Bureau.

Of the two letters Trump cites, Sessions brief letter does recommend Comeys dismissal, and cites the reasoning in Rosensteins letter. Rosensteins letter, however, does not explicitly recommend dismissal; instead, it only outlines Comeys serious mistakes in handling the Clinton e-mail investigation. It concludes that the FBI will be unlikely to regain public trust until a new Director is put in place. White House officials say that Sessions and Rosenstein pushed for Comeys removal, but observers in Washington, including veteran former FBI agents, view the letters as pretextual.

May 9, 2017 ABC News reports that Rosenstein was so upset that he was on the verge of resigning because of Trumps public statements, and statements by White House officials, that Trump was acting on Rosensteins recommendation in firing Comey. Rosenstein tells the Sinclair Broadcast Group: No, I’m not quitting.

May 9, 2017 Late that night, the White House announces that Trump will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey V. Lavrov in the Oval Office the next day.

May 10, 2017 Trump meets with Lavrov and Ambassador Kislyak in the Oval Office and speaks to them about the Russia investigation and Comeys firing. He reportedly tells the senior Russian officials: I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut jobI faced great pressure because of Russia. Thats taken offIm not under investigation.

According to the Times, Press Secretary Sean Spicer did not dispute the account. Instead, he claimed in a statement that: By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russias actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia. Spicer adds, The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it. Once again, the real story is that our national security has been undermined by the leaking of private and highly classified conversations.

May 11, 2017 In an interview with NBC Newss Lester Holt, Trump admits that even before he consulted Rosenstein, I was going to fire Comey. Theres no good time to do it, by the way. Holt mentions that in Trumps letter outlining the reasons for Comeys firing, he cited Rosensteins letter, and Trump responds, Oh, I was going to fire regardless of recommendation.

Then, while addressing how he would have fired Comey regardless, he adds: And in fact when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have wonThis was an excuse for having lost an election.

When Holt asks him about whether he was angry with Comey because of the FBIs Russia investigation, Trumps responds that he never tried to pressure Comey to drop it. He adds: Maybe I’ll expand that, you know, lengthen the time (of the Russia probe) because it should be over with, in my opinion, should have been over with a long time ago. ‘Cause all it is, is an excuse but I said to myself, I might even lengthen out the investigation, but I have to do the right thing for the American people. He added, I want that to be so strong and so good. And I want it to happen.”

May 12, 2017 Trump tweets, James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations, suggesting Trump may have recorded such tapes, and may decide to release them. The tweet follows a New York Times report the day prior describing the dinner between Trump and Comey at which Trump asked Comey for a pledge of loyalty.

James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 12, 2017

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The Times reports that both the president and his spokesman refused to confirm or deny whether Trump tapes his conversations with visitors. When asked about whether such tapes existed by a Fox News host later that day, Trump reiterated: That I cant talk about. I wont talk about itAll I want is for Comey to be honest. Spokesman Sean Spicer, when asked, would not give a definitive response, saying only, The president has nothing further to add on that. Spicer further denied that Trump was threatening Comey, saying Thats not a threatHe simply stated a fact. The tweet speaks for itself. Im moving on.

May 17, 2017 Rosenstein appoints former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to serve as the DOJs Special Counsel to investigate Russian interference in the election and possible coordination between Trump associates and Russia.

Trump responds by saying, a thorough investigation will confirm what we already know there was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity. I look forward to this matter concluding quickly. In the meantime, I will never stop fighting for the people and the issues that matter most to the future of our country.

However, Trump decries the decision on Twitter:

This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special counsel appointed!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017

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With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel appointed!; This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!

May 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump berated Sessions in an Oval Office meeting and told him he should resign, shortly after learning of the appointment of a Special Counsel to investigate links between the Trump campaign and Russia. Trump accuses Sessions of disloyalty and then launches into a series of insults against Sessions. Sessions became emotional and told Trump he would quit, and then drafted and sent a resignation letter to the White House. The Times reports that Sessions would later tell colleagues that Trumps dressing down was the most humiliating experience he had ever had in public life.

Trump eventually rejects the resignation in May after senior administration officials argue that it would only create more problems for him. But the Times also reports that he wished to remove Sessions again in July, though he did not act on it at that time. The Times reports that Trump believes the moment Sessions recused himself is the moment Trump lost control over the Russia investigation.

This dressing down represents the low point in the relationship between Trump and Sessions, a Senator who broke ranks with fellow Senators to become one of Trumps first supporters. The Timesreports that their relationship would marginally improve over time, partly because of Sessions taking a strong public stance against leakers later on.

May 18, 2017 Rosenstein testifies before a closed-door Senate briefing that he knew Trump wanted to fire Comey before he wrote his letter justifying Comeys removal.  Rosenstein adds that Trump asked him to write the letter. He tells Senators that on May 8 he knew that Trump was planning to fire Comey.

June 6, 2017 Washington Post reporter Robert Costa reports on NBC News that The President is expected to be Tweeting on Thursday in response to Comey not to stay quiet during the testimony because he himself wants to be the one driving the process.

Costa later tweets:

I’m told by two WH sources that Pres. Trump does not plan to put down Twitter on Thursday. May live tweet if he feels the need to respond.

— Robert Costa (@costareports) June 6, 2017

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June 7, 2017 DNI Coats and NSA Director Rogers both refuse to testify about their personal interactions with Trump and whether Trump asked them to intervene in the Russia investigation at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing.

Coats tells the Committee, I dont believe its appropriate for me to address that in a public session, when asked about whether Trump requested he intervene in the Russia investigation. Coats adds, however: But I am more than willing to sit before this committee during its investigative process in a closed session and answer your questions. Roger says, I am not going to discuss the specifics of interactions that I may or may have not had with the President.

Both men deny being pressured to intervene. Coats says, I have never felt pressure to intervene or interfere in any way and shape — with shaping intelligence, in a political way or in relationship to an ongoing investigation. Rogers tells the Committee, To the best of my recollection, I have never been directed to do anything I believe to be illegal, immoral, unethical or inappropriate.

June 8, 2017 Trumps personal lawyer Marc Kasowitz responds to Comeys testimony  claiming Comey admitted that he unilaterally and surreptitiously made unauthorized disclosures to the press of privileged communications with the President.

However, legal experts say that the executive privilege could not have been implicated by Comeys memos, because executive privilege functions as a shield against compelled rather than voluntary disclosure, and in any case, the leaks did not disclose any classified information or break any laws, since they dealt solely with private interactions with the President (the kind of internal communications of which many insider books are written).

June 16, 2017 Trump attacks Deputy AG Rosenstein on Twitter:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 22, 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump officially announces that he does not have taped recordings of his conversations with James Comey, citing Trumps tweet:

With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea…

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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…whether there are “tapes” or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 22, 2017

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The Times report notes that Trumps tweet leaves open the possibility that others may have recorded their conversations, potentially without permission, such as the Intelligence Community generally or FBI in particular.

The Times report notes that legal experts have said Trumps initial tweet threatening that tapes existed could serve as part of a potential obstruction of justice case, because the tweet could be construed as pressuring Comey not to reveal details about his and Trumps conversations relating to the Russia investigation to federal investigators. Others say the threat of existence of tapes suggest Trump was trying to keep Comey honest.

June 16, 2017 Trump attacks Rosenstein and the expanding Russia probe in a series of tweets:

I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017

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June 23, 2017 In a Fox television interview, in response to a Fox interviewer suggesting that the possibility of recordings of Comeys conversations with Trump may have ensured Comeys honesty in his Senate testimony, Trump says: Well, it wasnt very stupid, I can tell you that. He added that in response to the possibility of Comeys conversations being recorded, I think his story may have changed.

July 8, 2017 The New York Times reports that Donald Trump Jr. arranged a meeting at Trump Tower with a Kremlin-linked Russian lawyer in June 2016, shortly after his father won the Republican nomination. Campaign manager Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner also attended. Though Trump Jr. initially releases a statement saying the meeting was primarily about an adoption program, emailsreleased later show meeting occurred because Trump Jr. was promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton by the Russian lawyer.

Trump personally dictates a statement for Trump Jr., stating that he and the Russian lawyer primarily discussed a program about the adoption of Russian children, and that the subject of the meeting was not a campaign issue at the time. These claims are later proven to be false. Before the revelation of the presidents involvement in these deliberations, Trumps lawyer repeatedly denied Trump was involved in drafting them. Eventually, the White House confirms that Trump weighed in on the drafting of the misleading statement.

July 10, 2017 Trump tweets that Comey illegally leaked classified information to the media:

James Comey leaked CLASSIFIED INFORMATION to the media. That is so illegal!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 10, 2017

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July 19, 2017 In an interview with the New York Times, Trump says that had he known Sessions was going to recuse himself from the Russia investigation, he would not have nominated him to be Attorney General:

TRUMP: Look, Sessions gets the job. Right after he gets the job, he recuses himself.

BAKER: Was that a mistake?

TRUMP: Well, Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job, and I would have picked somebody else.

Trump repeats that he relied on the Rosenstein letter in deciding to fire Comey:

TRUMP: [] Rosenstein becomes extremely angry because of Comeys Wednesday press conference, where he said that he would do the same thing he did a year ago with Hillary Clinton, and Rosenstein became extremely angry at that because, as a prosecutor, he knows that Comey did the wrong thing. Totally wrong thing. And he gives me a letter, O.K., he gives me a letter about Comey. And by the way, that was a tough letter, O.K. Now, perhaps I would have fired Comey anyway, and it certainly didnt hurt to have the letter, O.K.

Trump asserts again that Comey leaked confidential information in his Senate testimony, and oddly suggests that, in their initial meeting, Comey told Trump to treat Flynn good (when Comey testified that Trump had asked him to let go of the Flynn investigation):

TRUMP: Comey also says that he did something in order to get the special prose special counsel. He leaked. The reason he leaked. So, he illegally leaked.

TRUMP: So think of this. [NYT reporter] Mike [L. Schmidt]. He illegally leaks, and everyone thinks it is illegal, and by the way, it looks like its classified and all that stuff. So he got not a smart guy he got tricked into that, because they didnt even ask him that question. They asked him another question, O.K.?

________

TRUMP: He said I said hope I hope you can treat Flynn good or something like that. I didnt say anything.

Later in the interview, Trump contends that Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe has a conflict of interest involving Hillary Clinton. Days later, he repeats his claim on Twitter:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Why didn’t A.G. Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, a Comey friend who was in charge of Clinton investigation but got….

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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…big dollars ($700,000) for his wife’s political run from Hillary Clinton and her representatives. Drain the Swamp!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017

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Jill McCabe, McCabes wife, received nearly $500,000 in 2015 campaign donations from a political action committee associated with Va. Gov. Terry McAuliffe during an unsuccessful Virginia Senate run. McAuliffe is close with both Bill and Hillary Clinton.

July 24, 2017 The New York Times reports that Trump aide and son-in-law Jared Kushner meet with Senate investigators looking into the Russia investigation on the Senate Intelligence Committee. After meeting with investigators behind closed doors, Kushner released a statement to news media: All of my actions were proper and occurred in the normal course of events of a very unique campaignI did not collude with Russians, nor do I know of anyone in the campaign who did. He is the first member of the Trump inner circle to confer with congressional investigators.

July 2425, 2017 In a series of early morning tweets, Trump renews his attacks against Sessions.

So why aren’t the Committees and investigators, and of course our beleaguered A.G., looking into Crooked Hillarys crimes & Russia relations?

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 24, 2017

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a VERY weak position on Hillary Clinton crimes (where are E-mails & DNC server) & Intel leakers!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump campaign – “quietly working to boost Clinton.” So where is the investigation A.G. @seanhannity

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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He also repeated his claims regarding McCabe having a conflict of interest with respect to the Clintons:

Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017

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Aug. 1, 2017 In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump again berates Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation:

WSJ: Hes the Russian guy. So Sessions has recused himself, but is Bob Muellers job safe? There is speculation

TRUMP: No, were going to see. I mean, I have no comment yet, because its too early. But well see. Were going to see. Heres the good news: I was never involved with Russia. There was nobody in the campaign. Ive got 200 people that will say that theyve never seen anybody on the campaign. Heres another he was involved early. Theres nobody on the campaign that saw anybody from Russia. We had nothing to do with Russia. They lost an election and they came up with this as an excuse. And the only ones that are laughing are the Democrats and the Russians. Theyre the only ones that are laughing. And if Jeff Sessions didnt recuse himself, we wouldnt even be talking about this subject.

And Trump further suggests that Sessions early campaign endorsement was not a sign of loyalty:

WSJ: Just on Sessions, just one thing. Would you like to see him step aside? Would you like to see him resign? Would it be in the countrys best interest just

TRUMP: Im just very disappointed in him. Im disappointed in, you know, a number of categories. I told you, the leakers. He should have he should be after them. So many people say to me: Why are they going after you on nothing and they leave Hillary Clinton alone on, you know, really major things? And it is so Im disappointed in him. And dont forget, when they say he endorsed me, I went to Alabama. I had 40,000 people, you may have been there, remember, in Mobile?

WSJ: I remember.

TRUMP: I had 40,000 people. He was the senator from Alabama. I won the state by a lot, massive numbers. A lot of the states I won by massive numbers. But he was a senator. He looks at 40,000 people and he probably says, what do I have to lose, and he endorsed me. So its not like a great, loyal thing about the endorsement. But Im very disappointed in Jeff Sessions.

Aug. 3, 2017 Vox reports that, in late May, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe told several people in high-level FBI management that they should consider themselves potential witnesses in any potential obstruction of justice investigation involving Trump. He told colleagues that he could also be a potential witness himself.

Aug. 26, 2017 The Washington Post reports that sometime this past spring, Trump approached AG Sessions and asked whether the DOJ could possibly drop its case against former Maricopa County, Arizona Sherriff Joe Arpaio, whom Trump has long respected. Sessions advised him that it would have been inappropriate to drop the case, after which Trump decided to let the case go to trial and subsequently grant a pardon. Legal experts believe that Trumps handling of the Arpaio case may be relevant to determining his intent in speaking to Comey about the FBIs Michael Flynn investigation (I hope you can let this go) in an obstruction of justice probe.

Aug. 31, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Trumps lawyers have met with Mueller several times in recent months and have submitted several memos to him contending that Trump didnt obstruct justice by firing Comey and questioning Comeys reliability as a potential witness.

Sept. 19, 2017 The Wall Street Journal reports that Muellers office interviewed DAG Rosenstein in June or July 2017 about Trumps removal of Comey. A source told CNN that Rosenstein has no current plans to recuse himself from the investigation, suggesting he does not view himself as a key witness in the obstruction of justice investigation. DOJ Spokesperson Ian Prior released a statement saying, As the deputy attorney general has said numerous times, if there comes a time when he needs to recuse, he will. However, nothing has changed.

[Editor’s Note: For more analysis, readers may be interested in: “A Round-Up of Just Securitys Obstruction of Justice Coverage”]

Read on Just Security »

Just Security

crime and terror – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)

Global Risk Insights (blog)
ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem
Global Risk Insights (blog)
While the web-based system was launched in 2006, the new version contains new features such as a discussion forum, which would allow law enforcement officials to share best practices, intelligence information and trends in crime and terrorism in an …and more »

crime and terror – Google News

organized crime and terrorism – Google News: ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem – Global Risk Insights (blog)

Global Risk Insights (blog)
ASEAN’s anti-terror coordination problem
Global Risk Insights (blog)
For instance, on 13 September, an Improved Database System was launched for ASEAN National Police (ASEANAPOL) in order to improve connectivity and information exchange regarding terrorism and organized crime. While the web-based system was …and more »

organized crime and terrorism – Google News

putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Yahoo: Russian trolls watched ‘House of Cards’ to learn about US politics – CNN

CNN
Yahoo: Russian trolls watched ‘House of Cards’ to learn about US politics
CNN
He was referring to a story he wrote, published on Sunday, in which an interview broadcast in Russian with a former member of the troll factory revealed the Russians were part of President Vladimir Putin’s campaign to influence the 2016 election.
Russian internet trolls were ordered to watch ‘House of Cards’ before 2016 election attack: reportRaw Story
Employee reveals how Russian trolls targeted Hillary Clinton before election – after studying House of CardsTelegraph.co.ukall 12 news articles »

putin won US 2016 election – Google News

Rudy Giuliani – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News

Fox News
Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’
Fox News
He did shiv me, yeah we also know that opponents of mine, like former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, knew something was coming, Clinton told Australia’s NewsCo.com. So there was clearly an effort to detail my campaign at the end. Clinton has repeatedly …
Hillary Clinton: How losing to Donald Trump changed herABC Onlineall 110 news articles »

Rudy Giuliani – Google News

Trump – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News

Fox News
Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’
Fox News
President Trump tweeted Monday that he hopes Crooked Hillary Clinton runs for president again, even as the former secretary of state was telling an Australian media outlet that former FBI Director James Comey gave her the “shiv.” I was recently 
Trump: ‘I hope’ Hillary Clinton runs in 2020Politico
Hillary Clinton warns that Trump may start a nuclear warBusiness Insiderall 111 news articles »

Trump – Google News

1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites): Rudy Giuliani – Google News: Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News

Fox News
Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’
Fox News
He did shiv me, yeah we also know that opponents of mine, like former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, knew something was coming, Clinton told Australia’s NewsCo.com. So there was clearly an effort to detail my campaign at the end. Clinton has repeatedly …
Hillary Clinton: How losing to Donald Trump changed herABC Onlineall 110 news articles »

Rudy Giuliani – Google News

1. Trump Circles: Elections from mikenova (16 sites)

Russian Intelligence services – Google News: Taliban admit Russia’s support, claims British newspaper – Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)

Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)
Taliban admit Russia’s support, claims British newspaper
Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)
The report said that Russia’s intelligence services were sending fleets of fuel tankers into Afghanistan through the Hairatan border crossing with Uzbekistan to companies operating on behalf of the Taliban. The Times reported that about $2.5 million 
Russia funds Taliban in war against Nato forcesThe Timesall 7 news articles »

Russian Intelligence services – Google News

trump and russia – Google News: Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena – Bloomberg

Bloomberg
Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena
Bloomberg
Washington (AP) — A political research firm behind a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump’s connections toRussia is balking at subpoenas from the House intelligence committee. A lawyer for the firm questioned the legitimacy of theand more »

trump and russia – Google News

Trump and Russia – Google News: Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena – Bloomberg

Bloomberg
Firm Behind Trump-Russia Dossier Balks at House Subpoena
Bloomberg
Washington (AP) — A political research firm behind a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump’s connections toRussia is balking at subpoenas from the House intelligence committee. A lawyer for the firm questioned the legitimacy of the
The founders of the firm behind the TrumpRussia dossier say they’ll refuse to testify before the House Intelligence …Business Insiderall 4 news articles »

Trump and Russia – Google News

donald trump russia – Google News: Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena – ABC News
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena
ABC News
A political research firm behind a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump’s connections to Russia is balking at subpoenas from the House intelligence committee. A lawyer for the firm questioned the legitimacy of the panel’s probe into 

donald trump russia – Google News

2016 elections and mental health – Google News: Baldacci, Faircloth won’t seek re-election to Bangor council – Bangor Daily News

Bangor Daily News
Baldacci, Faircloth won’t seek re-election to Bangor council
Bangor Daily News
… and I am proud of the job I’ve done, Baldacci said. Baldacci campaigned for the 2nd Congressional District seat in 2016against Republican incumbent Bruce Poliquin but dropped out of the race after he struggled to raise enough money. … Faircloth and more »

2016 elections and mental health – Google News

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Saved Stories – 1. Trump
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios

Axios
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election
Axios
U.S. investigators are probing whether Russia relied on clandestine American help to identify political soft spots and pressure points in its campaign to disrupt the 2016 election. But experts say that, even without local assistance, Russia’s own 
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?San Francisco Chronicle
Inside Russia’s alliance with white nationalists across the globeThinkProgressall 12 news articles »
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election – Axios

Axios
How history readied Putin to disrupt the US election
Axios
U.S. investigators are probing whether Russia relied on clandestine American help to identify political soft spots and pressure points in its campaign to disrupt the 2016 election. But experts say that, even without local assistance, Russia’s own 
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? Midland Daily News
Inside Russia’s alliance with white nationalists across the globeThinkProgressall 31  news articles »
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch – Patheos (blog)

Patheos (blog)
Manafort Got $60 Million from Russian Oligarch
Patheos (blog)
It’s the place where Russian oligarchs and organized crime (but I repeat myself), including Putin himself, launder their money through banks. And guess who was vice chairman of … Trump’s Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. While he was on the board of and more »
7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trumps America?
Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary Trumps supposed 2020 reelection effort may be even more fraudulent than previously known  »  10:59 AM 10/15/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Palmer Report »  Donald Trump: Further reading 16/10/17 01:12 from 1. Trump from mikenova (5 sites) Donald Trump Donald Trump further  Continue reading”7:22 AM 10/16/2017 The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading FT | » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trumps America?”
Dissident on Trump era: ‘China, Russia, they all laugh about it’ – The Hill (blog)

The Hill (blog)
Dissident on Trump era: ‘China, Russia, they all laugh about it’
The Hill (blog)
Chinese dissident and artist Ai Weiwei said in a new interview that China and Russia are laughing at the U.S. under PresidentTrump. Weiwei told Politico that the U.S. is in danger of losing the rights it’s known for under Trump. He also said the and more »
The Early Edition: October 16, 2017
Pouneh Ahari

Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Heres todays news.

SOMALIA

More than 300 have been killed in a double explosion in Somalias capital of Mogadishu on Saturday and the death toll is likely to rise, marking one of the deadliest attacks in the country since the Islamist insurgency started in 2007. Nicholas Bariyo reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The attack came after President Trump renewed efforts to rid Somalia of al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab militants, some analysts stating that the bombing may have been in retaliation for al-Shababs loss of territory and in response to the U.S. increased drone attacks. Hussein Mohamed, Eric Schmitt and Mohamed Ibrahim report at the New York Times.

The U.N. Secretary-General condemned the attack and urged all Somalis to unite in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism, in a statement by the Secretary-Generals spokesperson yesterday. The UN News Centre reports.

The Mogadishu attack may prompt the U.S. to step up its involvement in Somalia and to counter al-Shabab, who were almost certainly behind the attack. Jason Burke provides an analysis at the Guardian.

IRAN

We stand committed to the J.C.P.O.A. and its full implementation by all sides, a joint statement by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron said Friday, using the acronym for the Iran nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. The leaders made the statement following President Trumps decertification of Irans compliance with the accord and urged the Trump administration and Congress to consider the implications to the security of the U.S. and its allies before taking any steps to undermine the agreement. Laurence Norman reports at Wall Street Journal.

We will continue to stick to the deal and to cooperate with the [International Atomic Energy Agency] within the framework of international law, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Friday in response to Trumps decision to decertify Irans compliance, adding that the U.S. is more isolated than ever as a consequence of the presidents actions. Erin Cunningham reports at the Washington Post.

What were saying now with Iran is dont let it become the next North Korea, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley said yesterday, defending Trumps decision to decertify Irans compliance and arguing that the aim is to improve the situation and see how to make the nuclear agreement better. Eli Watkins reports at CNN.

If its not broke, dont fix it, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told Russias TASS news agency yesterday, responding to the Trumps decision to decertify Irans compliance, noting that the Trump administration has a habit of calling for improvements and amendments to already successful agreements. Olivia Beavers reports at the Hill.

Saudi Arabias King Salman praised President Trump for visionary new Iran strategy, the White House said yesterday in a read out of Saturdays call between Trump and King Salman. Mallory Shelbourne reports at the Hill.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Trump for his brave decision on the Iran deal in an interview yesterday, adding that we cannot allow this rogue regime 30 times the size of North Koreas economy to have a nuclear arsenal. Mallory Shelbourne reports at the Hill.

The U.S. is no longer not just unpredictable but unreliable, Irans Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said yesterday, stating that the strength of the agreement was that it was based on mutual mistrust but that Trump is widening the mistrust between Iran and the U.S. and between the U.S. and the international community. Rebecca Savransky reports at the Hill.

Syrias Foreign Ministry condemned the Trump administration yesterday for its decision on the Iran deal, Reuters reports.

The various reactions of global leaders to Trumps Iran strategy is provided by the BBC.

The Iran deal cannot be fixed because it is intrinsically misconceived, Iran cannot be trusted to comply with the agreement and the deal will breathe its last shortly. The former U.S. ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton writes at the Wall Street Journal.

Trumps Iran strategy foreshadows yet another crisis over the deal and perhaps a U.S. withdrawal in just three months time as the presidents decision to decertify Irans compliance has left Congress to deal with the mess he has created. Josh Rogin writes at the Washington Post 

The president has sent mixed messages to Congress about his intentions, which does not bode well for the future of the deal as Congress lacks the tools to make effective foreign policy decisions. Daniel B. Shapiro writes at POLITICO Magazine.

Iran carried out a cyberattack on the U.K. parliament and hacked 9,000 email accounts in June, including the account of Prime Minister Theresa May, according to a secret intelligence assessment. Francis Elliot and Fiona Hamilton report at the Times.

IRAQ

Iraqi forces and Kurdish troops have clashed in the northern oil-rich Iraqi province of Kirkuk today, amid a three-day standoff when Iraqi forces advanced into the disputed province which was included in last months controversial Iraqi Kurdistan independence referendum, where the Kurds voted overwhelmingly in favor of independence. Loveday Morris and Mustafa Salim report at the Washington Post.

The Iraqi forces were sent by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to impose security in the area and marks the first use of military force since the referendum vote, undermining the U.S.-backed efforts of the Iraqi army and Kurdish Peshmerga forces to combat Islamic State militants. David Zucchino reports at the New York Times.

The Iraqi central government accused the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Government (K.R.G.) of bringing Turkish Kurdistan Workers Party (P.K.K.) fighters to Kirkuk, labeling the move a declaration of war a K.R.G. official denying the claim as false and that there are only Peshmerga in Kirkuk. Reuters reports.

The Pentagon urged dialogue as the best option to defuse ongoing tensions and warned against destabilizing actions that distract from the fight against Islamic State militants and that would further undermine Iraqs stability. Reuters reports.

The Iraqi forces operation has allegedly caused lots of casualties, according to a Peshmerga commander, adding that the Iraqi forces burnt lots of houses and killed many people, the claims could not be independently verified. Al Jazeera reports.  

Iraqi forces have captured territory in Kirkuk today, including key several positions, the Iraqi military saying in a statement that they are continuing to advance. Reuters reports.

Iran shut its border crossings with Iraqi Kurdistan yesterday at the request of the Iraqi government, the Iraqi foreign ministry said in a statement. Reuters reports.

NORTH KOREA

Diplomatic efforts with North Korea will continue until the first bomb drops, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said in an interview yesterday, adding that the President has also made clear to me that he wants this solved diplomatically. Eli Watkins reports at CNN.

The U.S. and South Korea will begin five-day joint military exercises off the Korean Peninsula today, an exercise that was described by North Korea on Saturday as a reckless act of war and there has been speculation that the drills would prompt North Korea to launch a provocation, with one South Korean government source saying that Pyongyang is preparing to launch a missile. Eun-Young Jeong reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The U.S. military will conduct noncombatant evacuation exercises next week to prepare U.S. service members and their families in the event of war and other emergencies. Choe Sang-Hun reports at the New York Times.

North Korea and South Korea will not hold direct talks in Russia today, despite attending the same event and despite encouragement by Moscow to use the opportunity to talk. Reuters reports.

North Koreas ability to carry out cyberattacks poses a serious threat to the West and has achieved much more than many analysts expected, including targeting key state infrastructure, stealing hundreds of millions of dollars, and hacking into South Koreas military networks. David E. Sanger, David D. Kirkpatrick and Nicole Perlroth explain at the New York Times.

SYRIA

The U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (S.D.F.) began their final push to oust Islamic State militants from Raqqa yesterday, marking the last phase to combat the militants in their de facto capital in Syria and after a significant number of militants surrendered as part of a locally brokered deal. John Davison and Ellen Francis report at Reuters.

The locally brokered deal was arranged to minimize civilian casualties and purportedly excludes foreign Islamic State fighters, the U.S.-led coalition said in a statement, emphasizing that the coalition was not involved in the discussions for the deal. Louisa Loveluck reports at the Washington Post.

A senior Turkish official rejected Syrias call for Turkish troops to withdraw from the rebel-held Idlib province at the weekend, emphasizing that the Turkish forces are there in close cooperation with Russian forces and in order to establish a de-escalation zone. Umut Uras reports at Al Jazeera.

TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION

Trumps former campaign chairman Paul Manafort has around $60m worth of business dealings with Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, who has close ties to the Kremlin. Aggelos Petropoulos and Richard Engel report at NBC News.

Democrats and Republicans are stepping up efforts to secure the integrity of voting systems ahead of next years mid-term elections and in response to Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election. Michael Wines reports at the New York Times.

The America public deserve to know about the connections between the Democrats, opposition research firm Fusion GPS, former British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele and the F.B.I., and the medias focus on Trump-Russia has meant they have failed to pick up on stories that reveal wider Russian influence. The Wall Street Journal editorial board writes.

The PHILIPPINES

Two leaders of Islamic State-linked militants in the southern Philippine city of Marawi were killed by Philippine forces, a government spokesperson saying in a statement today that the bodies of the leaders one of whom was on the U.S. Department of Justice list of most-wanted terrorists world-wide were recovered today. Jake Maxwell Watts reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Around 30 militants remain in Marawi, the Philippines military chief said today, as the forces stage an operation to retake the city. The AP reports.

THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson defended his role in the Trump administration yesterday amid reports that he has a poor relationship with the president, Julia Manchester reports at the Hill.

The reports of a poor relationship between U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley and Tillerson are so ridiculous, Haley said in an interview yesterday, stating that she shares a great relationship with the Secretary of State. Jacqueline Klimas reports at POLITICO.

White House chief of staff John Kelly has been taking action to fill positions in the administration. Nancy Cook explains his efforts at POLITICO.

GUANTÁNAMO

The entire civilian legal team defending the alleged mastermind of the 2000 U.S.S. Cole bombing has quit due to a secret ethical conflict, throwing into doubt the future of the case. Carol Rosenberg reports at the Miami Herald.

The Pentagon has not yet said if it would extend the duty of the chief war crimes prosecutor Army Brig. Gen. Mark Martins, who is set to retire next month but has said would extend his service if asked to. Carol Rosenberg reports at the Miami Herald.

An al-Qaeda terrorist turned government informant was sentenced to 13 years in prison on Friday. Carol Rosenberg provides an overview of Ahmed al Darbis circumstances at the Miami Herald.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS

The Islamic State today claimed responsibility for firing two rockets yesterday from Egypts Sinai Peninsula into EgyptReuters reports.

The crisis in South Sudan has caused deep concern in the U.S., however the South Sudanese President Salva Kiir has dismissed the Trump administrations comments and shows no sign of changing his behavior. Kevin Sieff reports at the Washington Post.

Islamist militants carried out a daytime attack today in Egypts Sinai Peninsula today, killing seven according to officials. Ashraf Sweilam reports at the AP, also providing the context for the recent increased violence perpetrated by militants in Egypt.

Read on Just Security »

In Puerto Rico, Tesla is Doing What Donald Trump Isn’tFixing it – Newsweek

Newsweek
In Puerto Rico, Tesla is Doing What Donald Trump Isn’tFixing it
Newsweek
Almost one month after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, technology firms like Tesla are stepping in to fill the relief-effort void that many perceive President Donald Trump has created. Following through with a pledge by Elon Musk that his and more »
The Health 202: Trump has badly undercut his own administration on Puerto Rico – Washington Post

Washington Post
The Health 202: Trump has badly undercut his own administration on Puerto Rico
Washington Post
But Trump’s reassurances of support came only after several federal agencies scrambled Thursday to clarify that they’re as devoted to Puerto Rico’s relief effort as they were in Texas, Louisiana and Florida after Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. FEMA  and more »
Gay conservatives shocked that the Trump Administration is anti-LGBT – LGBTQ Nation

LGBTQ Nation
Gay conservatives shocked that the Trump Administration is anti-LGBT
LGBTQ Nation
With his political pandering and posturing to endear himself to the intolerant wing of the GOP over the last few years, it doesn’t surprise me that this administration will go down as the most anti-LGBT in history. Or maybe LaSalvia is just a terribleand more »
Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained – Vox

Vox
Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained
Vox
The Daily Beast reported last week that the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is looking into a data analytics company called Cambridge Analytica as part of its investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia and more »
9:02 AM 10/16/2017 Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton The Guardian
Saved Stories Trump Investigations Report Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian “*Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major … Continue reading”9:02 AM 10/16/2017 – Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian”
Idea of Islamic State gaining even while territory is lost – UPI.com

UPI.com
Idea of Islamic State gaining even while territory is lost
UPI.com
Oct. 16 (UPI) — Despite triumphal assertions from capitals such as Baghdad that the Islamic State has been “defeated” in Iraq and Syria, and that its self-professed caliph, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is on the run, the organization has in reality mutated 
9:17 AM 10/16/2017 Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell
Posts on G+ from mikenova (1 sites) Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretary Trump’s supposed … Continue reading”9:17 AM 10/16/2017 – Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell”
Trump reportedly mocks Mike Pence’s ultraconservative views, once joking that he ‘wants to hang’ all gay people – Business Insider

Business Insider
Trump reportedly mocks Mike Pence’s ultraconservative views, once joking that he ‘wants to hang’ all gay people
Business Insider
Mayer cited a longtime Trump associate as saying the president liked to keep Pence in check. Mayer reported that Trumpoften mocked Pence’s conservative views, like his desire to see Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that established women’s …
Trump joked Pence ‘wants to hang’ all gay people, New Yorker reportsThe Hill
Even Trump Reportedly Thinks Mike Pence Is a Crazed Anti-LGBTQ ZealotSplinter (blog)all 109 news articles »
Heres the Memo the Kremlin-Linked Lawyer Took to the Meeting With Donald Trump Jr. – Foreign Policy (blog)

Foreign Policy (blog)
Heres the Memo the Kremlin-Linked Lawyer Took to the Meeting With Donald Trump Jr.
Foreign Policy (blog)
Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya arrived at a June 2016 meeting with Donald Trump Jr. armed with a set of talking points arguing American officials were hoodwinked into slapping human rights sanctions on Russia in 2012 and that efforts to expand
Ukraine’s ‘Most Wanted’ Oligarch – Forbes

Forbes
Ukraine’s ‘Most Wanted’ Oligarch
Forbes
Some American investors are suffering as the result. … To Poroshenko’s credit, most of this happened under the previous administration of President Viktor Yanukovych, a close friend and political associate of Firtash’s, and a political ally of 
9:52 AM 10/16/2017 Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained
Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained Monday October 16th, 2017 at 9:49 AM Vox – All 1 Share The Daily Beast reported last week that the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is looking into a data analytics company called Cambridge Analytica as part of its investigation into possible collusion between … Continue reading”9:52 AM 10/16/2017 – Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained”
Mexican Border State Authorities Probing Assassination of Intel Agent – Breitbart News

Breitbart News
Mexican Border State Authorities Probing Assassination of Intel Agent
Breitbart News
Despite the significance of having a federal intelligence official murdered, the case went largely unnoticed in Mexico. … Robert Arce is a retired Phoenix Police detective with extensive experience working Mexican organized crime and street gangs 
Trump On Gays: Pence Wants To ‘Hang Them All’
A New Yorker article says Trump teases the socially conservative vice president about religion, abortion and gay rights.
Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’ – Fox News

Fox News
Trump dares ‘crooked’ Hillary to run again after she blames loss on Comey ‘shiv’
Fox News
Clinton has repeatedly blamed Comey and the investigation into Those Damn Emails (the title of one chapter in her book), but has also said voter ID laws, Chief Justice of the United States John Roberts, women and other factors contributed to the loss
Trump: ‘I hope’ Hillary Clinton runs in 2020Politico
Trump ‘may act alone on nukes’Rockhampton Morning Bulletinall 33 news articles »
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena – ABC News
Firm behind Trump-Russia dossier balks at House subpoena
ABC News
A political research firm behind a dossier of allegations about President Donald Trump’s connections to Russia is balking at subpoenas from the House intelligence committee. A lawyer for the firm questioned the legitimacy of the panel’s probe into 
Taliban admit Russia’s support, claims British newspaper – Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)

Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)
Taliban admit Russia’s support, claims British newspaper
Pajhwok Afghan News (blog)
The report said that Russia’s intelligence services were sending fleets of fuel tankers into Afghanistan through the Hairatan border crossing with Uzbekistan to companies operating on behalf of the Taliban. The Times reported that about $2.5 million 
Russia funds Taliban in war against Nato forcesThe Timesall 7 news articles »
Microsoft Email-Access Fight With US Gets Supreme Court Review – Bloomberg

Bloomberg
Microsoft Email-Access Fight With US Gets Supreme Court Review
Bloomberg
The justices will review a federal appeals ruling that the Trump administration says has become a major obstacle in criminalprobes. Already, Google Inc. and Yahoo, acquired by Verizon Communications Inc., have stopped complying with search warrants and more »
Trump to meet Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, accused of extrajudicial killings, during Asian visit
President Trump will meet with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte during a marathon trip to Asia next month, the White House announced Monday. The Presidents travel will underscore his commitment to long-standing United States alliances and partnerships, and reaffirm United States leadership in promoting a free and open Indo-Pacific region, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee […]
The deadly ambush Donald Trump hasn’t yet acknowledged – MSNBC

MSNBC
The deadly ambush Donald Trump hasn’t yet acknowledged
MSNBC
It’s been nearly two weeks since U.S. forces were ambushed in Niger, an attack that left four American servicemen dead. If it seems like this story hasn’t generated much in the way of national news, it may be because Donald Trump hasn’t said a word

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FEATURED POSTS: 7:57 AM 9/20/2017 – PUTIN’S PRO-TRUMP OPERATION MAY HAVE BEEN FAR BIGGER THAN WE YET KNOW – MOTHER JONES | ANATOMY OF A RUSSIAN ATTACK

“We don’t know what these Facebook ads looked like, we don’t know who they were targeting, and we don’t know how many millions of Americans may have been exposed to them.”

Putin’s Pro-Trump Operation May Have Been Far Bigger Than We Yet Know
Did the Kremlin help make Trump the “first Facebook president”?
BILL BUZENBERG – SEP. 20, 2017 6:00 AM

M.N.: And we have to know the answers to these and many other questions. 

12:26 PM 9/20/2017 – “Political marketing” and possible use of the “psychotronic weapons” techniques in targeted advertising

_________________________________

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11:55 AM 10/16/2017 – TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION – from The Early Edition: October 16, 2017

SYRIA

The U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (S.D.F.) began their final push to oust Islamic State militants from Raqqa yesterday, marking the last phase to combat the militants in their de facto capital in Syria and after a significant number of militants surrendered as part of a locally brokered deal. John Davison and Ellen Francis report at Reuters.

The locally brokered deal was arranged to “minimize civilian casualties” and “purportedly excludes” foreign Islamic State fighters, the U.S.-led coalition said in a statement, emphasizing that the coalition was not involved in the discussions for the deal. Louisa Loveluck reports at the Washington Post.

A senior Turkish official rejected Syria’s call for Turkish troops to withdraw from the rebel-held Idlib province at the weekend, emphasizing that the Turkish forces are there in close cooperation with Russian forces and in order to establish a de-escalation zone. Umut Uras reports at Al Jazeera.

TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION

Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort has around $60m worth of business dealings with Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, who has close ties to the Kremlin. Aggelos Petropoulos and Richard Engel report at NBC News.

Democrats and Republicans are stepping up efforts to secure the integrity of voting systems ahead of next year’s mid-term elections and in response to Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election. Michael Wines reports at the New York Times.

The America public deserve to know about the connections between the Democrats, opposition research firm Fusion GPS, former British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele and the F.B.I., and the media’s focus on Trump-Russia has meant they have failed to pick up on stories that reveal wider Russian influence. The Wall Street Journal editorial board writes.

THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson defended his role in the Trump administration yesterday amid reports that he has a poor relationship with the president, Julia Manchester reports at the Hill.

The reports of a poor relationship between U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley and Tillerson are “so ridiculous,” Haley said in an interview yesterday, stating that she shares a “great relationship” with the Secretary of State. Jacqueline Klimas reports at POLITICO.

White House chief of staff John Kelly has been taking action to fill positions in the administration. Nancy Cook explains his efforts at POLITICO.

The Early Edition: October 16, 2017 

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Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Here’s today’s news.

SOMALIA

More than 300 have been killed in a double explosion in Somalia’s capital of Mogadishu on Saturday and the death toll is likely to rise, marking one of the deadliest attacks in the country since the Islamist insurgency started in 2007. Nicholas Bariyo reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The attack came after President Trump renewed efforts to rid Somalia of al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab militants, some analysts stating that the bombing may have been in retaliation for al-Shabab’s loss of territory and in response to the U.S.’ increased drone attacks. Hussein Mohamed, Eric Schmitt and Mohamed Ibrahim report at the New York Times.

The U.N. Secretary-General condemned the attack and urged all Somalis “to unite in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism,” in a statement by the Secretary-General’s spokesperson yesterday. The UN News Centre reports.

The Mogadishu attack may prompt the U.S. to step up its involvement in Somalia and to counter al-Shabab, who were almost certainly behind the attack. Jason Burke provides an analysis at the Guardian.

IRAN

“We stand committed to the J.C.P.O.A. and its full implementation by all sides,” a joint statement by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron said Friday, using the acronym for the Iran nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. The leaders made the statement following President Trump’s decertification of Iran’s compliance with the accord and urged the Trump administration and Congress to “consider the implications to the security of the U.S. and its allies before taking any steps” to undermine the agreement. Laurence Norman reports at Wall Street Journal.

“We will continue to stick to the deal and to cooperate with the [International Atomic Energy Agency] within the framework of international law,” Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Friday in response to Trump’s decision to decertify Iran’s compliance, adding that the U.S. is “more isolated than ever” as a consequence of the president’s actions. Erin Cunningham reports at the Washington Post.

“What we’re saying now with Iran is don’t let it become the next North Korea,” the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley said yesterday, defending Trump’s decision to decertify Iran’s compliance and arguing that the aim is to “improve the situation” and “see how” to make the nuclear agreement “better.” Eli Watkins reports at CNN.

“If it’s not broke, don’t fix it,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told Russia’s TASS news agency yesterday, responding to the Trump’s decision to decertify Iran’s compliance, noting that the Trump administration has a habit of calling for improvements and amendments to already successful agreements. Olivia Beavers reports at the Hill.

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman “praised President Trump for visionary new Iran strategy,” the White House said yesterday in a read out of Saturday’s call between Trump and King Salman. Mallory Shelbourne reports at the Hill.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Trump for his “brave decision” on the Iran deal in an interview yesterday, adding that “we cannot allow this rogue regime 30 times the size of North Korea’s economy to have a nuclear arsenal.” Mallory Shelbourne reports at the Hill.

“The U.S. is no longer not just unpredictable but unreliable,” Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said yesterday, stating that the strength of the agreement was that it was based on “mutual mistrust” but that Trump is “widening the mistrust” between Iran and the U.S. and between the U.S. and the international community. Rebecca Savransky reports at the Hill.

Syria’s Foreign Ministry condemned the Trump administration yesterday for its decision on the Iran deal, Reuters reports.

The various reactions of global leaders to Trump’s Iran strategy is provided by the BBC.

The Iran deal cannot be “fixed” because it is “intrinsically misconceived,” Iran cannot be trusted to comply with the agreement and the deal “will breathe its last shortly.” The former U.S. ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton writes at the Wall Street Journal.

Trump’s Iran strategy foreshadows “yet another crisis over the deal and perhaps a U.S. withdrawal in just three months’ time” as the president’s decision to decertify Iran’s compliance has left Congress to deal with the mess he has created. Josh Rogin writes at the Washington Post 

The president has sent mixed messages to Congress about his intentions, which does not bode well for the future of the deal as Congress lacks the tools to make effective foreign policy decisions. Daniel B. Shapiro writes at POLITICO Magazine.

Iran carried out a cyberattack on the U.K. parliament and hacked 9,000 email accounts in June, including the account of Prime Minister Theresa May, according to a secret intelligence assessment. Francis Elliot and Fiona Hamilton report at the Times.

IRAQ

Iraqi forces and Kurdish troops have clashed in the northern oil-rich Iraqi province of Kirkuk today, amid a three-day standoff when Iraqi forces advanced into the disputed province which was included in last month’s controversial Iraqi Kurdistan independence referendum, where the Kurds voted overwhelmingly in favor of independence. Loveday Morris and Mustafa Salim report at the Washington Post.

The Iraqi forces were sent by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to impose security in the area and marks the first use of military force since the referendum vote, undermining the U.S.-backed efforts of the Iraqi army and Kurdish Peshmerga forces to combat Islamic State militants. David Zucchino reports at the New York Times.

The Iraqi central government accused the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Government (K.R.G.) of bringing Turkish Kurdistan Workers’ Party (P.K.K.) fighters to Kirkuk, labeling the move a “declaration of war” – a K.R.G. official denying the claim as “false” and that there are only Peshmerga in Kirkuk. Reutersreports.

The Pentagon urged dialogue as “the best option to defuse ongoing tensions” and warned against “destabilizing actions that distract” from the fight against Islamic State militants and that would “further undermine Iraq’s stability.” Reuters reports.

The Iraqi forces’ operation has allegedly caused “lots of casualties,” according to a Peshmerga commander, adding that the Iraqi forces “burnt lots of houses and killed many people,” the claims could not be independently verified. Al Jazeera reports.  

Iraqi forces have captured territory in Kirkuk today, including key several positions, the Iraqi military saying in a statement that they are “continuing to advance.” Reuters reports.

Iran shut its border crossings with Iraqi Kurdistan yesterday at the request of the Iraqi government, the Iraqi foreign ministry said in a statement. Reuters reports.

NORTH KOREA

Diplomatic efforts with North Korea “will continue until the first bomb drops,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said in an interview yesterday, adding that the “President has also made clear to me that he wants this solved diplomatically.” Eli Watkins reports at CNN.

The U.S. and South Korea will begin five-day joint military exercises off the Korean Peninsula today, an exercise that was described by North Korea on Saturday as “a reckless act of war” and there has been speculation that the drills would prompt North Korea to launch a provocation, with one South Korean government source saying that Pyongyang is preparing to launch a missile. Eun-Young Jeong reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The U.S. military will conduct noncombatant evacuation exercises next week to prepare U.S. service members and their families in the event of war and other emergencies. Choe Sang-Hun reports at the New York Times.

North Korea and South Korea will not hold direct talks in Russia today, despite attending the same event and despite encouragement by Moscow to use the opportunity to talk. Reuters reports.

North Korea’s ability to carry out cyberattacks poses a serious threat to the West and has achieved much more than many analysts expected, including targeting key state infrastructure, stealing hundreds of millions of dollars, and hacking into South Korea’s military networks. David E. Sanger, David D. Kirkpatrick and Nicole Perlroth explain at the New York Times.

SYRIA

The U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (S.D.F.) began their final push to oust Islamic State militants from Raqqa yesterday, marking the last phase to combat the militants in their de facto capital in Syria and after a significant number of militants surrendered as part of a locally brokered deal. John Davison and Ellen Francis report at Reuters.

The locally brokered deal was arranged to “minimize civilian casualties” and “purportedly excludes” foreign Islamic State fighters, the U.S.-led coalition said in a statement, emphasizing that the coalition was not involved in the discussions for the deal. Louisa Loveluck reports at the Washington Post.

A senior Turkish official rejected Syria’s call for Turkish troops to withdraw from the rebel-held Idlib province at the weekend, emphasizing that the Turkish forces are there in close cooperation with Russian forces and in order to establish a de-escalation zone. Umut Uras reports at Al Jazeera.

TRUMP-RUSSIA INVESTIGATION

Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort has around $60m worth of business dealings with Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, who has close ties to the Kremlin. Aggelos Petropoulos and Richard Engel report at NBC News.

Democrats and Republicans are stepping up efforts to secure the integrity of voting systems ahead of next year’s mid-term elections and in response to Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election. Michael Wines reports at the New York Times.

The America public deserve to know about the connections between the Democrats, opposition research firm Fusion GPS, former British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele and the F.B.I., and the media’s focus on Trump-Russia has meant they have failed to pick up on stories that reveal wider Russian influence. The Wall Street Journal editorial board writes.

The PHILIPPINES

Two leaders of Islamic State-linked militants in the southern Philippine city of Marawi were killed by Philippine forces, a government spokesperson saying in a statement today that the bodies of the leaders – one of whom was on the U.S. Department of Justice list of most-wanted terrorists world-wide – were recovered today. Jake Maxwell Watts reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Around 30 militants remain in Marawi, the Philippine’s military chief said today, as the forces stage an operation to retake the city. The AP reports.

THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson defended his role in the Trump administration yesterday amid reports that he has a poor relationship with the president, Julia Manchester reports at the Hill.

The reports of a poor relationship between U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley and Tillerson are “so ridiculous,” Haley said in an interview yesterday, stating that she shares a “great relationship” with the Secretary of State. Jacqueline Klimas reports at POLITICO.

White House chief of staff John Kelly has been taking action to fill positions in the administration. Nancy Cook explains his efforts at POLITICO.

GUANTÁNAMO

The entire civilian legal team defending the alleged mastermind of the 2000 U.S.S. Cole bombing has quit due to a secret ethical conflict, throwing into doubt the future of the case. Carol Rosenberg reports at the Miami Herald.

The Pentagon has not yet said if it would extend the duty of the chief war crimes prosecutor Army Brig. Gen. Mark Martins, who is set to retire next month but has said would extend his service if asked to. Carol Rosenberg reports at the Miami Herald.

An al-Qaeda terrorist turned government informant was sentenced to 13 years in prison on Friday. Carol Rosenberg provides an overview of Ahmed al Darbi’s circumstances at the Miami Herald.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS

The Islamic State today claimed responsibility for firing two rockets yesterday from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula into EgyptReuters reports.

The crisis in South Sudan has caused deep concern in the U.S., however the South Sudanese President Salva Kiir has dismissed the Trump administration’s comments and shows no sign of changing his behavior. Kevin Sieff reports at the Washington Post.

Islamist militants carried out a daytime attack today in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula today, killing seven according to officials. Ashraf Sweilam reports at the AP, also providing the context for the recent increased violence perpetrated by militants in Egypt.

Read on Just Security »

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9:52 AM 10/16/2017 – Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained

“The technologies can capture what people are thinking at a particular moment,” Albright told me, “and serve it back to them over and over again.” And with the benefit of psychographic profiling, he adds, they’re able to deliver “content on an individual basis on Twitter and Facebook feeds where people are being grabbed and pulled in certain directions through certain types of posts and stories.

“I’ve called it an emotional leash,” Woolley said.

Cambridge Analytica, the shady data firm that might be a key Trump-Russia link, explained

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The Daily Beast reported last week that the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is looking into a data analytics company called Cambridge Analytica as part of its investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election.

Cambridge Analytica specializes in what’s called “psychographic” profiling, meaning they use data collected online to create personality profiles for voters. They then take that information and target individuals with specifically tailored content (more on this below).

According to the Daily Beast report, congressional investigators believe that Russian hackers might have received help in their efforts to distribute “fake news” and other forms of misinformation during the 2016 campaign. Hence the focus on Cambridge Analytica.

So far there’s been a lot of speculation about the potential links between the Trump campaign and Russia, and most of the stories have orbited around the financial dealings of the Trump family and people like Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign manager. But this story is specifically about how team Trump might have facilitated Russia’s meddling in the US presidential election.

The stakes, in other words, are high.

So here’s what we know about Cambridge Analytica, its connections to the Trump campaign, and what sorts of things the House Intel probe is likely looking into.

Trump’s digital army

In June 2016, the Trump campaign hired Cambridge Analytica to take over its data operations.

We know from the reporting of Nicholas Confessore and Danny Hakim at the New York Times that Jared Kushner, who was charged with overseeing Trump’s digital operations, is the reason Cambridge Analytica joined the Trump campaign.

Kushner hired a man named Brad Parscale, a Texas-based digital expert who had worked previously for team Trump. According to Confessore and Hakim, Cambridge Analytica convinced Parscale (who has since agreed to be interviewed by the House Intelligence Committee) to “try out the firm.” The decision was reinforced by Trump’s campaign manager, Steve Bannon, who is also a former vice president of Cambridge Analytica.

It’s not clear to what extent Cambridge Analytica helped (Parscale denied that Cambridge was of any use in a recent 60 Minutes interview), but we do know that Trump’s digital operation was shockingly effective. Samuel Woolley, who heads the Computational Propaganda project at Oxford’s Internet Institute, found that a disproportionate amount of pro-Trump messaging was spread via automated bots and anti-Hillary propaganda. Trump’s bots, they reported at the time of the election, outnumbered Clinton’s five to one.

Pro-Trump programmers “carefully adjusted the timing of content production during the debates, strategically colonized pro-Clinton hashtags, and then disabled activities after Election Day.”

Martin Moore, director of the Centre for the Study of Media, Communication and Power at King’s College, told the Guardian’s Carole Cadwalladr that Trump’s campaign “was using 40-50,000 variants of ads every day that were continuously measuring responses and then adapting and evolving based on that response.”

These online ads were spread primarily thought bots on social media platforms. The ads that got liked, shared, and retweeted the most were reproduced and redistributed based on where they were popular and who they appealed to.

The benefit of this kind of data is that it allows data companies like Cambridge Analytica to develop more sophisticated psychological profiles of internet users (more data points means more predictive power).

Cambridge Analytica was also able to use this real-time information to determine which messages were resonating where and then shape Trump’s travel schedule around it. So, if there was a spike in clicks on an article about immigration in a county in Pennsylvania or Wisconsin, Trump would go there and give an immigration-focused speech.

When you consider how a few thousands votes in a handful of swing states determined the election, this is no small thing.

Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images

Flynn and the Russians

In early July, Shane Harris of the Wall Street Journal released a series of reports that offered some of the most compelling evidence yet that Trump’s campaign colluded with Russian hackers.

Harris interviewed a man named Peter Smith, a pro-Trump GOP operative who sought to acquire the 30,000 deleted emails from Hillary Clinton’s private server. Of the several hacker groups Smith reached out to, at least two had connections to Russia — that’s according to Smith.

Smith told Harris that he was in regular contact with Gen. Michael Flynn, who at the time was one of Trump’s closest confidants — and of course later became Trump’s national security adviser.

Here’s a key passage from the Harris report, which my Vox colleague Andrew Prokop highlighted at the time:

“He [Smith] said, ‘I’m talking to Michael Flynn about this — if you find anything, can you let me know?’” said Eric York, a computer-security expert from Atlanta who searched hacker forums on Mr. Smith’s behalf for people who might have access to the emails. …

…In phone conversations, Mr. Smith told a computer expert he was in direct contact with Mr. Flynn and his son, according to this expert. … The expert said that based on his conversations with Mr. Smith, he understood the elder Mr. Flynn to be coordinating with Mr. Smith’s group in his capacity as a Trump campaign adviser.

Harris examined intelligence reports that described the efforts of Russian hackers to retrieve emails from Clinton’s server and pass them along to Flynn, who would then share them with the Trump campaign.

By itself, Harris’s reporting makes no connection to Cambridge Analytica. But in August the Associated Press published a report that helped connect the dots. In an amended public financial filing, Flynn was forced to disclose “a brief advisory role with a firm related to a controversial data analysis company that aided the Trump campaign.”

The “data analysis company” is none other than Cambridge Analytica. The precise amount of money Cambridge paid to Flynn is unknown, as are the details of Flynn’s role.

But we know that congressional and DOJ investigators believe that Trump’s campaign might have helped guide Russia’s voter targeting scheme and that Flynn, who worked for Trump’s campaign and with Cambridge Analytica, is suspected of having extensive ties with Russian operatives.

A Cambridge Analytica spokesperson confirmed to Vox that the company is cooperating with the Russia investigation but flatly denied any wrongdoing.

“As one of the companies that played a prominent role in the election campaign, Cambridge Analytica has been asked by the House Intelligence Committee to provide it with information that might help its investigation,” the statement said. “We believe that other organizations that worked on the campaign have been asked to do the same. CA is not under investigation, and there is no suggestion of any wrongdoing by the company.”

What does Cambridge Analytica actually do?

If you use the internet or social media, you leave behind a digital trail of crumbs. Every post you like, every tweet you retweet, every thread you participate in — it’s all data up for collection and input.

Cambridge Analytica, a company created by Robert Mercer, a billionaire patron of right-wing outlets like Breitbart News, has been swallowing up all the data they can get. They’re not the only company doing this, but they appear to be the most prominent — in part because of their high-profile clients.

In a 2016 speech, Alexander Nix, the CEO of Cambridge Analytica, unfurled the company’s methodology: “We’ve rolled out a long-form quantitative instrument to probe the underlying traits that inform personality,” he proclaimed. “If you know the personality of the people you’re targeting, you can nuance your messaging to resonate more effectively with those key groups.”

By “your message” he means whoever pays the company for its services. But so far the firm has only taken on Republican clients, with Ted Cruz and Ben Carson being the most visible. They also worked on behalf of 2016 pro-Brexit “Leave” campaign, mining online data and using it to target and persuade British voters.

So what are they doing with all that data?

Cambridge Analytica has built models that translate the data they harvest into personality profiles for every American adult — Nix claims to have “somewhere close to 4 or 5 thousand data points on every adult in the US.”

Their models are based on the psychometric research of Michal Kosinski, who in 2013 was still a PhD candidate at the University of Cambridge (hence the name “Cambridge Analytica”). Kosinski and his colleagues developed a model that linked subjects’ Facebook likes with their OCEAN scores. OCEAN refers to a questionnaire used by psychologists that describes personalities along five dimensions — openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism.

Cambridge Analytica has combined this social psychology with data analytics. They collect data from Facebook and Twitter (which is perfectly legal) and have purchased an array of other data — about television preferences, airline travel, shopping habits, church attendance, what books you buy, what magazines you subscribe to — from third-party organizations and so-called data brokers.

They take all this information and use it for what Nix calls “behavioral microtargeting” — basically individualized advertising.

Instead of tailoring ads according to demographics, they use psychometrics. It’s a simple idea, really. Rather than assuming that all women or African Americans or working-class whites will respond to the same message, they target individual voters with emotionally charged content — in other words, ads designed to tug on emotional biases.

The success of this approach hinges on the accuracy of the company’s psychological profiles. But how much can they know about someone’s psyche on the basis of a few tweets or likes? Quite a lot, apparently. In a 2016 profile for Das Magazin, a Berlin-based culture magazine, Kosinski talked about the predictive power of his model.

Here’s how the authors summed it up:

The strength of their [Kosinski and his Cambridge colleagues] modeling was illustrated by how well it could predict a subject’s answers. Kosinski continued to work on the models incessantly: before long, he was able to evaluate a person better than the average work colleague, merely on the basis of ten Facebook “likes.” Seventy “likes” were enough to outdo what a person’s friends knew, 150 what their parents knew, and 300 “likes” what their partner knew. More “likes” could even surpass what a person thought they knew about themselves.

Combine this kind of predictive power with an army of bots and you’ve got a potent propaganda tool. As Woolley told me, “One person controlling a thousand bot accounts is able to not just affect the people in their immediate circle but also potentially the algorithm of the site on which their operating.”

Bots are even more effective, as they’re able to react instantly to trending topics on Twitter and Facebook, producing targeted posts, images, and even YouTube videos.

“The technologies can capture what people are thinking at a particular moment,” Albright told me, “and serve it back to them over and over again.” And with the benefit of psychographic profiling, he adds, they’re able to deliver “content on an individual basis on Twitter and Facebook feeds where people are being grabbed and pulled in certain directions through certain types of posts and stories.

“I’ve called it an emotional leash,” Woolley said.

Getty Images

There’s a lot we don’t know

We don’t know if Flynn actually passed any data to the Russians. Nor do we know if his numerous ties to Russia resulted in collusion.

We don’t know if the Trump campaign coordinated with the Russians to help their disinformation operation. We know only that there are many points of overlap. And if anyone in his campaign did coordinate with Russia, we don’t know if Trump himself was involved in any way.

We don’t know if the data produced by Cambridge Analytica ever found its way to Russians. And if it did, we don’t know for sure how it got there or how much it helped or if the company was aware of it.

We also don’t know how useful Cambridge Analytica’s work was to the Trump campaign. Researchers like Woolley told me that the company’s capabilities are a “bit overblown,” but we simply don’t know. We know only what they’ve admitted publicly about their methods and what they claim to be able to do.

One thing we do know is that data companies like Cambridge Analytica have changed things. Facebook is already under fire for allowing Russia to manipulate its algorithms during the 2016 election. And we’ve likely just scratched the surface in terms of how state actors are able to weaponize information online. The role of companies like Cambridge Analytica in these efforts remains something of a mystery, however.

In any event, no definitive evidence has emerged that connects Cambridge Analytica and the Trump campaign to Russia’s efforts to influence our election. What we’re left with, ultimately, is a ton of smoke and no fire. But if the ongoing investigations conclude that the Trump campaign did help Russia target voters, expect to hear more about Cambridge Analytica.

It’s entirely possible that such collusion could have occurred and the work of Cambridge Analytica had nothing to do with it; however, that would be strange, since targeting voters is precisely what the company was hired to do.

Read the whole story
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1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian

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The Guardian
Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton
The Guardian
Hillary Clinton embarked on a speaking tour of Britain with a message that the Brexit referendum was won on the basis of a big lie and warning that Vladimir Putin has been conducting a “cyber cold war” against the west. She urged more women to enter 
‘I’m worried’ says Hillary Clinton as she attacks Trump and Putin in Cheltenham Literature Festival talkGloucestershire Live
‘State of Denial’: Hillary Clinton Blames Nigel Farage, Macedonian Fake News Factories, for Losing ElectionBreitbart News
Hillary Clinton interviewed by Fareed Zakaria for Sunday, Oct. 15 at 10:00am Eastern and PacificCNN (blog)
Savannah Morning News –BlueRidgeNow.com
all 242 news articles »

 putin won US 2016 election – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

‪Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell ‬ 

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‪Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell ‬

Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell

Trump just keeps giving things away

Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes 

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Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

This is precisely what Donald Trump has been fearing

Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – San Francisco Chronicle

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The Daily Advertiser (blog)
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?
San Francisco Chronicle
Cybersecurity sleuths claim Russia used Pokemon Go to inflame racial tensions and accuse Twitter of deleting crucial data detailing Russian efforts to sow discord during the 2016presidential election. “Russia, Russia Everywhere,” read The New York 
Don’t make Russian election hack great againThe Daily Advertiser (blog)
Hillary Clinton Suggests Russian Interference In US Election Was A “Cyber 9/11”BuzzFeed Newsall 22 news articles »

Donald Trump – further reading

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The Donald Trump media feeding-frenzy is in full flow. But beyond all the fun stuff about the horse-race and the insults, have there been any really good articles explaining the Trump phenomenon? I have found two recent pieces particularly interesting. Thomas Edsall explains how – “The economic basis for voter anger has been building for over 40 years” – and has some interesting numbers on the stagnation of real wages, the shrinking of the middle-class, the disappearance of manufacturing jobs and the impact of Chinese accession to the WTO.

Another good analysis, this time on the Vox site, looks at the kinds of people who are attracted to Trump’s rhetoric – and in particular at political scientists’ work on the rise of authoritarian attitudes in America. Apparently, people’s attitudes to parenting are a good predictor of their attitudes to Trump. Those who value obedience in children, above all, are “authoritarian” types, who also like Trump. But there are also is a large group of people with “latent authoritarianism”, which is aroused when they feel under threat.

If you prefer full-throated condemnation to analysis, may I recommend this speech by Mitt Romney. It got covered a lot when it was made on Thursday, but it is worth reading in full. I suspect historians may judge that the speech was made several months too late. I also liked Robert Kagan’s eloquent condemnation of Trump in the Washington Post.

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Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretary 

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Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretary

Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretary

Trump’s supposed 2020 reelection effort may be even more fraudulent than previously known

8:12 PM 10/15/2017 – CNN’s YouTube Videos: Leading Democrat calls for Puerto Rico water investigation after CNN report

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1. News in Photos from mikenova (4 sites) WSJ.com: World News: Freed Family Tries to Rebuild as Dark Details Emerge About Ordeal The couple rescued by Pakistani military forces is moving to rebuild their life in a small Canadian town after five years in captivity in which they say an infant daughter was killed and … Continue reading “8:12 PM 10/15/2017 – CNN’s YouTube Videos: Leading Democrat calls for Puerto Rico water investigation after CNN report”

Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – Westport News

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Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?
Westport News
Cybersecurity sleuths claim Russia used Pokemon Go to inflame racial tensions and accuse Twitter of deleting crucial data detailing Russian efforts to sow discord during the 2016presidential election. “Russia, Russia Everywhere,” read The New York and more »

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Palmer Report: Here comes Donald Trump’s biggest meltdown about Rex Tillerson yet

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Donald Trump seems to desperately wish he could fire Secretary of State Rex Tillerson for having called him a “moron.” But by now it’s clear that Trump doesn’t have the guts to do it, either because he’s at his politically weakest point in general, or because Tillerson is a personal friend of Vladimir Putin. Regardless of the reason, Tillerson is now flaunting the fact that he apparently can’t be fired. Based on what Tillerson did on Sunday, we’re about to see Trump’s biggest meltdown about him to date.

For reasons known only to him, instead of laying low until “Morongate” blows over, Rex Tillerson decided to appear on CNN State of the Union on Sunday morning. He knew full well that he’d be asked yet again whether or not he really called Trump a moron. Sure enough, CNN’s Jake Tapper asked him the question. Tillerson once again refused to answer – which at this point is an absolute confirmation that he did call him a moron.

Trump has long had insecurities about his intellect. His poorly written and phonetically misspelled tweets suggest that he suffers from some sort of mild learning disability, which may drive his insecurities on the matter, even though learning disabilities are not counter-indicative to intellect. It’s not shocking that Trump responded to the “moron” insult by publicly calling for himself and Tillerson to take IQ tests.

Donald Trump watches the Sunday morning shows, at least when his own people are on, so he saw Rex Tillerson’s interview. He saw Tillerson once again refusing to deny that he called Trump a moron. That’ll be enough to set Trump off yet again, with a round of angry tweets about Tillerson on Monday – or perhaps not til Tuesday, if some other grievance distracts him. But we’re looking at the (supposed) President of the United States publicly attacking his own Secretary of State yet again.

The post Here comes Donald Trump’s biggest meltdown about Rex Tillerson yet appeared first on Palmer Report.

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 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

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I DO NOT LIKE YOU, FACEBOOK! 

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I DO NOT LIKE YOU, FACEBOOK!  You are cheap, pretentious, primitive, and mediocre, just like the majority of your customers. Like “faces”, like “books”, like “posts”, like the uniform mentality of your everywhere-nowhere “friends”. Somewhere between the kindergarten and the institution for the mentally challenged.  Not only its current COO, but the Facebook itself is … Continue reading “I DO NOT LIKE YOU, FACEBOOK! “

Sheryl Sandberg’s Russia talk was an insult to our intelligence – Google Search

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Story image for Sheryl Sandberg’s Russia talk was an insult to our intelligence from Markets Insider

Sheryl Sandberg’s Russia talk was an insult to our intelligence

Markets InsiderOct 12, 2017
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, says people were worried about hacking and not election interference before 2016.

Story image for Sheryl Sandberg’s Russia talk was an insult to our intelligence from Markets Insider

Facebook says fake accounts linked to Russia bought thousands of …

Markets InsiderSep 6, 2017
Our analysis suggests these accounts and Pages were affiliated with … The “vast majority” of ads related to the fake Russian accounts didn’t …
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Sheryl Sandberg’s Russia talk was an insult to our intelligence, Business Insider

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source
Axios

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, says people were worried about hacking and not election interference before 2016.

But that’s not true. Hillary Clinton and others were warning about Russia’s disinformation campaign as far back as 2011.

Facebook needs to stop talking about what it didn’t do for years and start talking about what it will do from today.In a live interview with the news website Axios on Thursday, Facebook’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, lamented that the company hadn’t found out about Russia’s use of the platform to spread disinformation and propaganda before the 2016 US elections.

“We were looking at this certainly not as early as we would have liked to, because we wish we had found it before it ever happened,” Sandberg said.

“If you think about 2015, 2016,” she later added, “the threats most people were worried about were hacking, taking down accounts, getting into your email account and sharing all of it.”

Oh.

Perhaps hacking is what users were worried about, but in national security and press circles, the idea of a Russian information war against the US had been gaining steam since 2011. TV channels like Russia Today and websites like Sputnik have long been unapologetic about towing the Kremlin line – about the fact that they are pushing Russian President Vladimir Putin’s will.

By 2015, Russian propaganda was all over Facebook in forms both formal and informal, and the platform had already helped Russia wreak havoc around the world, especially in Ukraine.

“There are those who claim the warnings are just the work of alarmist neo-conservatives,” Columbia professor Ann Cooper and I said in The Washington Post in 2015. “They’re not. The spread of ideas matters. If it didn’t, Russia wouldn’t be in the idea-spreading business.”

Connecting the dots that Russia may have a plan for the US presidential election would require one to pay attention. So let’s say Facebook wasn’t. That’s gross negligence. To ignore that the people purchasing space on Facebook were pushing lies and distortions, on the other hand, is beyond that – it’s willful ignorance and a stunning display of greed.

They’ll tell you

I know that we’re in an information war with Russia because I asked.

Back in 2015, as an adjunct professor at Columbia’s journalism school, I hosted staffers from RT, and they were very frank about their mission. They informed us that from 2008, when the US was critical of Russia’s annexation of a piece of Georgia, their aim was to show the world that the US was a flawed nation that’s inferior to Russia.

Take a quick look at the topics RT consistently used to prove its anti-American point and you might as well be at a buffet serving Facebook’s garbage media diet from the election. Going back as far as 2011, RT was playing on US racial tensions and shrilly accusing Hillary Clinton of warmongering and criminality.

I say 2011 because that’s when Clinton, then secretary of state, testified before Congress about Russia’s information war against the US. The Kremlin knew she was watching, and so the Kremlin went to war against her. No one who paid attention to this interaction was shocked that Putin favored Donald Trump in 2016.

But again, you had to be paying attention. Or you had to keep paying attention. After Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Congress again addressed the matter of Russian propaganda in testimony. The former RT journalist Liz Wahl explained how the Kremlin manipulated social media, and it might sound familiar to anyone in the US now.

From Wahl’s testimony (emphasis ours):

“Russian media provides a home for a spectrum of political beliefs as long as they are skeptical of the political establishment. While some of the theories peddled are outright absurd, there are a surprising amount of people prone to being manipulated that think it’s hip to believe in any alternative theory, feeling proud of perceiving themselves to be enlightened and even prouder when they amass sizable social media followers that hang on every misguided and outright false theory that is propagated. Russia is aware of this population of paranoid skeptics and plays them like a fiddle.

Sound familiar? Maybe it reminds you of a few arguments you had with Facebook-addicted family members over the holidays in 2016.

Another witness, Peter Pomeratsev, a journalist who spent years working in Russian television, was even more explicit mentioning Facebook by name.

“The Kremlin… funds ‘troll farms,’ regime-funded companies which hire people to spread messages on social media, using Facebook, Twitter, newspaper comment sections and many other spaces. Through these networks, Russia propagates conspiracy theories, disinformation and fake news…. Their aim was [is] not so much to persuade a potential viewer of any one version, but to trash the information space with so much disinformation so that a conversation based on actual facts would become impossible.”

Pomeratsev wrote a book about his time working in Russia called “Nothing is Real and Everything is Possible” – about how Russia became a fact-less nation. America now knows what he was talking about, but it’s something Facebook should’ve known before we had to find out.

No one wants to hear it, Sheryl

Facebook says it didn’t have an inkling of what was going on before the election, but we know that it knew the Kremlin’s agents were bullying Ukrainian activists, at the very least. Were Sandberg and Zuckerberg simply so naive they didn’t think that Putin would turn his eye on his most fearsome enemy?

Or were they just so greedy they didn’t care?

In the Axios interview, most of Sandberg’s comments were backward-looking and so, in a word, worthless. The 2018 elections are coming, and the far right has not tried to disguise its affinity for the Kremlin line. Steve Bannon’s Breitbart News is known for spreading its share of fact-melting misinformation that sounds as if it’s straight from the RT newsroom.

And – for so-called anti-globalists – Bannon has shown a willingness to collaborate with other international Putin-philes like the UK’s Nigel Farage and Hungary’s far right. Make no mistake: What they all have in common is not only “nationalism” but also a belief in Putin’s political system – fascism.

Opposing this and stamping it out shouldn’t be a question for Facebook. This isn’t a gray area. This an American value. We are not fascists. Millions of people around the world died not too long ago to reaffirm that. What Facebook (and Twitter and Google) has done – ignoring the spread of fascism, lies, and anti-American propaganda in the digital space – is a disgusting display of moral relativism and intellectual laziness that Silicon Valley has revealed it can wear as easily as a pair of Tevas and some cargo shorts.

We don’t want to hear about what Facebook missed. We want to hear that Facebook will not allow the agents of a fascist movement to continue to manipulate it as a distribution platform. We want to hear how attempts by these agents to engage the platform will be vetted and reported to the US government.

Read the whole story
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PBSNewsHour’s YouTube Videos: Iraqi, Kurdish forces in standoff over Kurdish independence 

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From: PBSNewsHour
Duration: 02:59

Iraqi army and Kurdish troops are in a standoff in Kirkuk, a city located in the Kurdistan region, which voted for independence from Iraq last month. Kirkuk holds 10 percent of Iraq’s oil reserves. Washington Post reporter Loveday Morris, who is covering the standoff, joins Hari Sreenivasan via Skype from Baghdad.

 PBSNewsHour’s YouTube Videos

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9:17 AM 10/16/2017 – Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell

Posts on G+ from mikenova (1 sites)
Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading

The Method To The Morons Madness » Donald Trump: Further reading

Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com

Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: 7:22 AM 10/16/2017 » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering…

7:22 AM 10/16/2017 » Donald Trump | The Guardian: How Fallon fell: why is the late-night host floundering in Trumps America?

Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report

Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report
Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes
Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – San Francisco Chronicle
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Elections 2016 Investigation videos – Google News: Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – Westport News
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Palmer Report: Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump – Google News: How Trump is about to make the ‘worst deal ever’ even worse – Washington Post
Mike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pull
Trump’s Executive Actions May Mean More Headaches For Struggling Congress – NPR
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): trump is politically immature – Google News: The Danger of President Pence – The New Yorker
7:26 PM 10/15/2017 Im intact, Tillerson says, brushing off drama with Trump CNBC
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): trump authoritarianism – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump Investigations Report: 7:36 PM 10/15/2017 Trumps Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany Reuters
8:12 PM 10/15/2017 CNNs YouTube Videos: Leading Democrat calls for Puerto Rico water investigation after CNN report
Trump campaign legal bills topped $1 million last quarter – Washington Post
Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump liar – Google News: America needs some vertebrates in the Grand Old Party – Kansas City Star (blog)
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Donald Trump | The Guardian: Clinton says WikiLeaks is now a ‘subsidiary of Russian intelligence’

 

Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian
 


The Guardian
Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton
The Guardian
Hillary Clinton embarked on a speaking tour of Britain with a message that the Brexit referendum was won on the basis of a big lie and warning that Vladimir Putin has been conducting a cyber cold war against the west. She urged more women to enter 
‘I’m worried’ says Hillary Clinton as she attacks Trump and Putin in Cheltenham Literature Festival talkGloucestershire Live
‘State of Denial’: Hillary Clinton Blames Nigel Farage, Macedonian Fake News Factories, for Losing ElectionBreitbart News
Hillary Clinton interviewed by Fareed Zakaria for Sunday, Oct. 15 at 10:00am Eastern and PacificCNN (blog)
Savannah Morning News –BlueRidgeNow.com
all 242 news articles »

 putin won US 2016 election – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

“*Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell

“*Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshellDonald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell

Trump just keeps giving things away
Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

Donald Trump’s obscene, sexist and racist outtakes from The Apprentice have become the stuff of legend. The tapes exist, and some outsiders claim to have seen them, but everyone involved has refused to officially make them public. Now, a sexual assault case filed last year by a former Apprentice contestant has finally resulted in a subpoena being served to Trump and his campaign. That subpoena appears to cover the tapes in question.Summer Zervos and her attorney Gloria Allred filed the suit against Donald Trump after the Access Hollywood tape surfaced of Trump bragging about sexually assaulting women. Zervos is seeking to forcibly expose all available evidence of Trump’s longtime pattern of sexual harassment and sexual assault. According to reporting from BuzzFeed and NBC News (link), the subpoena has in fact been served. That means, by legal definition, that a judge signed off on the subpoena after having ruled that the evidence is relevant.

Trump’s people are still trying a last ditch motion to dismiss, in the hope of getting the subpoena thrown out. But that seems unlikely, considering that a judge decided the subpoena was worthy to begin with. Because Zervos has stated that her goal is to publicly expose Trump, rather than getting a monetary judgment against him, the logical outcome of this is that the evidence in question will be made public.

Based on the manner in which the Apprentice tapes have been described by those who claim to have seen them, and by those who claim to have witnessed the tapings in person, these tapes represent Exhibit A in Donald Trump’s pattern of sexual harassment and sexual assault so they fall within the scope of the subpoena that has been served to Trump. It’s another story as to whether the Apprentice tapes documenting Trump’s racist remarks would also have to be turned over.

The post Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapesappeared first on Palmer Report.

Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapesDonald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

This is precisely what Donald Trump has been fearing
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – San Francisco Chronicle
 


The Daily Advertiser (blog)
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?
San Francisco Chronicle
Cybersecurity sleuths claim Russia used Pokemon Go to inflame racial tensions and accuse Twitter of deleting crucial data detailing Russian efforts to sow discord during the 2016 presidential election. Russia, Russia Everywhere, read The New York
Don’t make Russian election hack great againThe Daily Advertiser (blog)
Hillary Clinton Suggests Russian Interference In US Election Was A “Cyber 9/11”BuzzFeed Newsall 22 news articles »

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Elections 2016 Investigation videos – Google News: Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – Westport News
 

Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?
Westport News
Cybersecurity sleuths claim Russia used Pokemon Go to inflame racial tensions and accuse Twitter of deleting crucial data detailing Russian efforts to sow discord during the 2016 presidential election. Russia, Russia Everywhere, read The New Yorkand more »

 Elections 2016 Investigation videos – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Palmer Report: Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary

When Donald Trump began holding campaign rallies this year which were officially for his 2020 reelection campaign, observers couldn’t figure out what he was really up to until it was discovered that at least part of the money being raised was actually being funneled to pay Donald Trump Jr’s legal bills in the Russia scandal. Now it turns out those supposed “reelection” funds may also be going to Trump’s personal secretary.Legal activist group Citizens for Ethics (CREW) has been routinely suing Donald Trump and related entities in court in order to expose his various financial schemes and scams, and is backed by legal heavyweights including Laurence Tribe and Richard Painter. CREW has managed to piece together that the same attorney is representing both Donald Trump Jr and and Donald Trump’s personal secretary Rhona Graff in the Russia scandal (link). This means that the “reelection” money being funneled to that attorney may for the purpose of covering the secretary’s legal bills as well. This would have major practical implications on the scandal.

If Donald Trump is scheming to cover the legal bills for Graff, then it strongly suggests that he’s trying to motivate her not to testify about what she’s witnessed. Depending on legal interpretation, this could be considered an attempt at obstructing justice. It would be one thing for Trump to pay his son’s legal bills; that’s a family matter. But paying his secretary’s legal bills, when she’s potentially a star witness against him in a criminal case, is another matter.

Even if it can’t be proven that Donald Trump is trying to buy his secretary’s silence in bad faith, this could signal to Special Counsel Robert Mueller where he should be digging next. There would have been communications between Trump, Graff, and/or the attorney regarding the arrangement and those could be subpoenaed. Either way, if Trump’s “2020 reelection” funds are indeed going to his personal secretary, that’s a scandal in and of itself.

The post Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretaryappeared first on Palmer Report.

 Palmer Report

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary

Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trumps personal secretaryDonald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary

Trump’s supposed 2020 reelection effort may be even more fraudulent than previously known
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump – Google News: How Trump is about to make the ‘worst deal ever’ even worse – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
How Trump is about to make the ‘worst deal ever’ even worse
Washington Post
President Trump has called the North American Free Trade Agreement the worst deal ever, but one thing might actually be worse: no deal at all. The fourth round of negotiations to revise the agreement wraps up Oct. 17, but many people close to the
As Trump Moves To Renegotiate NAFTA, US Farmers Are Hopeful But NervousNPR
Trump’s Nafta ThreatWall Street Journalall 70 66 news articles »

 Trump – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

Mike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pull

Mike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pullMike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pull

No really, the GOP is blaming a tractor pull
Trump’s Presidency Is Bad for Business His Own – NBCNews.com
 


NBCNews.com
Trump’s Presidency Is Bad for Business His Own
NBCNews.com
Donald Trump’s presidency is bad for business his own. Unless his business is getting presidential business. From golf courses to hotels to fashion, the sprawling brands of the president and his family have been taking hits since Election Day, based and more »

Trump’s Executive Actions May Mean More Headaches For Struggling Congress – NPR
 


NPR
Trump’s Executive Actions May Mean More Headaches For Struggling Congress
NPR
President Trump has recently taken a series of what appear to be bold executive actions to reverse Obama-era policies: declining to re-certify the Iran nuclear deal, halting subsidy payments to insurance companies and setting an expiration date for the and more »

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): trump is politically immature – Google News: The Danger of President Pence – The New Yorker
 


The New Yorker
The Danger of President Pence
The New Yorker
After Trump threatened to totally destroy North Korea, Gail Collins, the Times columnist, praised Vice-President Mike Pence as someone who at least seems less likely to get the planet blown up. This summer, an opinion column by Dana Milbank, of the and more »

 trump is politically immature – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Russian Election Trolls Watched House Of Cards To Learn How To Manipulate Americans – Bleeding Cool News
 


Bleeding Cool News
Russian Election Trolls Watched House Of Cards To Learn How To Manipulate Americans
Bleeding Cool News
Professional Russian trolls tasked by Vladimir Putin to help Donald Trump win the 2016 presidential election used the Netflix drama House of Cards as a training video, according to a report from Yahoo News. The trolls used knowledge aboutAmerican …
‘House Of Cards’ Was Required Viewing At Russian ‘Troll Factory,’ Netflix Drama Used To Explain US PoliticsThe Inquisitrall 6 news articles »

 putin won US 2016 election – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

7:26 PM 10/15/2017 Im intact, Tillerson says, brushing off drama with Trump CNBC

Saved Stories Trump Investigations Report Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report ‘I’m intact,’ Tillerson says, brushing off drama with Trump – CNBC Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell Donald Trump may be trying to mount a mental incompetence defense after all Reince … Continue reading“7:26 PM 10/15/2017 – ‘I’m intact,’ Tillerson says, brushing off drama with Trump – CNBC”
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): trump authoritarianism – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian
 


The Guardian
Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton
The Guardian
Hillary Clinton at the London literary festival, speaking about her recently published memoir reflecting on her defeat by DonaldTrump. Photograph: Jack Taylor/Getty Images … Some Democrats had urged her to be silent after her defeat to Trump but she 
‘State of Denial’: Hillary Clinton Blames Nigel Farage, Macedonian Fake News Factories, for Losing ElectionBreitbart News
Hillary Clinton quizzed on parallels between Weinstein and ex-president husbandNews & Star
What Happened: Hillary Clinton charts the hurt of a campaign lostThe Australianall 240 news articles »

 trump authoritarianism – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump Investigations Report: 7:36 PM 10/15/2017 Trumps Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany Reuters

Saved Stories Trump Investigations Report Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report Trump Lies About Taxes, Health Care Amid Cabinet Scandals: A Closer Look President Trump Delivers Remarks on the Iran Strategy President Trump passing Iran policy to Congress? Trump’s Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany – Reuters Germany: Trump’s Iran plans … Continue reading“7:36 PM 10/15/2017 – Trump’s Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany – Reuters” Trump Investigations Report

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

7:36 PM 10/15/2017 Trumps Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany Reuters

Saved Stories Trump Investigations Report Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report Trump Lies About Taxes, Health Care Amid Cabinet Scandals: A Closer Look President Trump Delivers Remarks on the Iran Strategy President Trump passing Iran policy to Congress? Trump’s Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany – Reuters Germany: Trump’s Iran plans … Continue reading“7:36 PM 10/15/2017 – Trump’s Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany – Reuters”
8:12 PM 10/15/2017 CNNs YouTube Videos: Leading Democrat calls for Puerto Rico water investigation after CNN report

1. News in Photos from mikenova (4 sites) WSJ.com: World News: Freed Family Tries to Rebuild as Dark Details Emerge About Ordeal The couple rescued by Pakistani military forces is moving to rebuild their life in a small Canadian town after five years in captivity in which they say an infant daughter was killed and … Continue reading“8:12 PM 10/15/2017 – CNN’s YouTube Videos: Leading Democrat calls for Puerto Rico water investigation after CNN report”
Trump campaign legal bills topped $1 million last quarter – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Trump campaign legal bills topped $1 million last quarter
Washington Post
President Trump’s reelection committee spent more than $1 million on legal bills last quarter as investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 election pressed on through the summer, according to a disclosure filed Sunday with the Federal Election …
Trump campaign legal bills topped $1M in three monthsCNN
Trump Campaign Spending on Legal Fees Surges as Russia Inquiries WidenNew York Times
Trump campaign operation raises $11.6 million during third quarterPolitico re-election campaign raised $10 million in third quarter, spent $1.1 million on legal feesCNBC
Politico
USA TODAYBloomberg The Hill (blog)
all 19 

all 18
 news articles »
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – Westport News
 

Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?
Westport News
Cybersecurity sleuths claim Russia used Pokemon Go to inflame racial tensions and accuse Twitter of deleting crucial data detailing Russian efforts to sow discord during the 2016 presidential election. Russia, Russia Everywhere, read The New Yorkand more »

Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary

When Donald Trump began holding campaign rallies this year which were officially for his 2020 reelection campaign, observers couldn’t figure out what he was really up to until it was discovered that at least part of the money being raised was actually being funneled to pay Donald Trump Jr’s legal bills in the Russia scandal. Now it turns out those supposed “reelection” funds may also be going to Trump’s personal secretary.Legal activist group Citizens for Ethics (CREW) has been routinely suing Donald Trump and related entities in court in order to expose his various financial schemes and scams, and is backed by legal heavyweights including Laurence Tribe and Richard Painter. CREW has managed to piece together that the same attorney is representing both Donald Trump Jr and and Donald Trump’s personal secretary Rhona Graff in the Russia scandal (link). This means that the “reelection” money being funneled to that attorney may for the purpose of covering the secretary’s legal bills as well. This would have major practical implications on the scandal.

If Donald Trump is scheming to cover the legal bills for Graff, then it strongly suggests that he’s trying to motivate her not to testify about what she’s witnessed. Depending on legal interpretation, this could be considered an attempt at obstructing justice. It would be one thing for Trump to pay his son’s legal bills; that’s a family matter. But paying his secretary’s legal bills, when she’s potentially a star witness against him in a criminal case, is another matter.

Even if it can’t be proven that Donald Trump is trying to buy his secretary’s silence in bad faith, this could signal to Special Counsel Robert Mueller where he should be digging next. There would have been communications between Trump, Graff, and/or the attorney regarding the arrangement and those could be subpoenaed. Either way, if Trump’s “2020 reelection” funds are indeed going to his personal secretary, that’s a scandal in and of itself.

The post Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretaryappeared first on Palmer Report.

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump liar – Google News: America needs some vertebrates in the Grand Old Party – Kansas City Star (blog)
 


Kansas City Star (blog)
America needs some vertebrates in the Grand Old Party
Kansas City Star (blog)
So how does Ryan imagine that a Corker/Trump conversation might unfold? Over dinner, Corker accuses the president of being a chaotic, directionless, shallow liar who could start a nuclear war. Trump passes the peas and attacks Corker for being short.and more »

 Trump liar – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

Trump, Chieftain of Spite – New York Times
 


New York Times
Trump, Chieftain of Spite
New York Times
This is the existence of Donald Trump in the wake of President Barack Obama. Trump can’t hold a candle to Obama, so he’s taking a tiki torch to Obama’s legacy. Trump can’t get his bad ideas though Congress, but he can use the power of the presidency to …and more »

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Donald Trump | The Guardian: Clinton says WikiLeaks is now a ‘subsidiary of Russian intelligence’

Julian Assange may be on Putins payroll, defeated presidential candidate tells Australias Four Corners programHillary Clinton has repeated her claim that the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, colluded with the Russian government in the lead-up to the 2016 US election, describing him as a nihilistic opportunist who does the bidding of a dictator.

In an interview with the ABCs Four Corners program, to air on Monday night, Clinton alleges that Assange cooperated with the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, to disrupt the US election and damage her campaign for president.

Related: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton

Related: What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton digested read

There’s something wrong with Hillary Clinton. It is not just her constant lying. It is not just that she throws off menacing glares and seethes thwarted entitlement. Watch closely. Something much darker rides along with it. A cold creepiness rarely seen. https://t.co/JNw2dkXgdu

Continue reading…

 Donald Trump | The Guardian

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

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9:02 AM 10/16/2017 – Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian

Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report

Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report
Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – San Francisco Chronicle
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Elections 2016 Investigation videos – Google News: Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – Westport News
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Palmer Report: Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary
Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump – Google News: How Trump is about to make the ‘worst deal ever’ even worse – Washington Post
Mike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pull
Trump’s Presidency Is Bad for Business His Own – NBCNews.com
Trump’s Executive Actions May Mean More Headaches For Struggling Congress – NPR
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Russian Election Trolls Watched House Of Cards To Learn How To Manipulate Americans – Bleeding Cool News
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): trump authoritarianism – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump Investigations Report: 7:36 PM 10/15/2017 Trumps Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany Reuters
7:36 PM 10/15/2017 Trumps Iran plans driving EU toward Russia and China: Germany Reuters
8:12 PM 10/15/2017 CNNs YouTube Videos: Leading Democrat calls for Puerto Rico water investigation after CNN report
Trump campaign legal bills topped $1 million last quarter – Washington Post
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – Westport News
Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump liar – Google News: America needs some vertebrates in the Grand Old Party – Kansas City Star (blog)
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Donald Trump | The Guardian: Clinton says WikiLeaks is now a ‘subsidiary of Russian intelligence’

 

Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian
 


The Guardian
Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton
The Guardian
Hillary Clinton embarked on a speaking tour of Britain with a message that the Brexit referendum was won on the basis of a big lie and warning that Vladimir Putin has been conducting a cyber cold war against the west. She urged more women to enter 
‘I’m worried’ says Hillary Clinton as she attacks Trump and Putin in Cheltenham Literature Festival talkGloucestershire Live
‘State of Denial’: Hillary Clinton Blames Nigel Farage, Macedonian Fake News Factories, for Losing ElectionBreitbart News
Hillary Clinton interviewed by Fareed Zakaria for Sunday, Oct. 15 at 10:00am Eastern and PacificCNN (blog)
Savannah Morning News –BlueRidgeNow.com
all 242 news articles »

 putin won US 2016 election – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

“*Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell

“*Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshellDonald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell

Trump just keeps giving things away
Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

Donald Trump’s obscene, sexist and racist outtakes from The Apprentice have become the stuff of legend. The tapes exist, and some outsiders claim to have seen them, but everyone involved has refused to officially make them public. Now, a sexual assault case filed last year by a former Apprentice contestant has finally resulted in a subpoena being served to Trump and his campaign. That subpoena appears to cover the tapes in question.Summer Zervos and her attorney Gloria Allred filed the suit against Donald Trump after the Access Hollywood tape surfaced of Trump bragging about sexually assaulting women. Zervos is seeking to forcibly expose all available evidence of Trump’s longtime pattern of sexual harassment and sexual assault. According to reporting from BuzzFeed and NBC News (link), the subpoena has in fact been served. That means, by legal definition, that a judge signed off on the subpoena after having ruled that the evidence is relevant.

Trump’s people are still trying a last ditch motion to dismiss, in the hope of getting the subpoena thrown out. But that seems unlikely, considering that a judge decided the subpoena was worthy to begin with. Because Zervos has stated that her goal is to publicly expose Trump, rather than getting a monetary judgment against him, the logical outcome of this is that the evidence in question will be made public.

Based on the manner in which the Apprentice tapes have been described by those who claim to have seen them, and by those who claim to have witnessed the tapings in person, these tapes represent Exhibit A in Donald Trump’s pattern of sexual harassment and sexual assault so they fall within the scope of the subpoena that has been served to Trump. It’s another story as to whether the Apprentice tapes documenting Trump’s racist remarks would also have to be turned over.

The post Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapesappeared first on Palmer Report.

Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

Donald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapesDonald Trump has been served a subpoena to turn over his obscene Apprentice tapes

This is precisely what Donald Trump has been fearing
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – San Francisco Chronicle
 


The Daily Advertiser (blog)
Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?
San Francisco Chronicle
Cybersecurity sleuths claim Russia used Pokemon Go to inflame racial tensions and accuse Twitter of deleting crucial data detailing Russian efforts to sow discord during the 2016 presidential election. Russia, Russia Everywhere, read The New York
Don’t make Russian election hack great againThe Daily Advertiser (blog)
Hillary Clinton Suggests Russian Interference In US Election Was A “Cyber 9/11”BuzzFeed Newsall 22 news articles »

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Elections 2016 Investigation videos – Google News: Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation? – Westport News
 

Why are Russian media outlets hyping the Mueller investigation?
Westport News
Cybersecurity sleuths claim Russia used Pokemon Go to inflame racial tensions and accuse Twitter of deleting crucial data detailing Russian efforts to sow discord during the 2016 presidential election. Russia, Russia Everywhere, read The New Yorkand more »

 Elections 2016 Investigation videos – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Palmer Report: Donald Trump reelection campaign funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary

When Donald Trump began holding campaign rallies this year which were officially for his 2020 reelection campaign, observers couldn’t figure out what he was really up to until it was discovered that at least part of the money being raised was actually being funneled to pay Donald Trump Jr’s legal bills in the Russia scandal. Now it turns out those supposed “reelection” funds may also be going to Trump’s personal secretary.Legal activist group Citizens for Ethics (CREW) has been routinely suing Donald Trump and related entities in court in order to expose his various financial schemes and scams, and is backed by legal heavyweights including Laurence Tribe and Richard Painter. CREW has managed to piece together that the same attorney is representing both Donald Trump Jr and and Donald Trump’s personal secretary Rhona Graff in the Russia scandal (link). This means that the “reelection” money being funneled to that attorney may for the purpose of covering the secretary’s legal bills as well. This would have major practical implications on the scandal.

If Donald Trump is scheming to cover the legal bills for Graff, then it strongly suggests that he’s trying to motivate her not to testify about what she’s witnessed. Depending on legal interpretation, this could be considered an attempt at obstructing justice. It would be one thing for Trump to pay his son’s legal bills; that’s a family matter. But paying his secretary’s legal bills, when she’s potentially a star witness against him in a criminal case, is another matter.

Even if it can’t be proven that Donald Trump is trying to buy his secretary’s silence in bad faith, this could signal to Special Counsel Robert Mueller where he should be digging next. There would have been communications between Trump, Graff, and/or the attorney regarding the arrangement and those could be subpoenaed. Either way, if Trump’s “2020 reelection” funds are indeed going to his personal secretary, that’s a scandal in and of itself.

The post Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trump’s personal secretaryappeared first on Palmer Report.

 Palmer Report

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary

Donald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trumps personal secretaryDonald Trump “reelection campaign” funds may be going to Trumps personal secretary

Trump’s supposed 2020 reelection effort may be even more fraudulent than previously known
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): Trump – Google News: How Trump is about to make the ‘worst deal ever’ even worse – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
How Trump is about to make the ‘worst deal ever’ even worse
Washington Post
President Trump has called the North American Free Trade Agreement the worst deal ever, but one thing might actually be worse: no deal at all. The fourth round of negotiations to revise the agreement wraps up Oct. 17, but many people close to the
As Trump Moves To Renegotiate NAFTA, US Farmers Are Hopeful But NervousNPR
Trump’s Nafta ThreatWall Street Journalall 70 66 news articles »

 Trump – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

Mike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pull

Mike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pullMike Pences disastrous campaign rally couldnt compete with a local tractor pull

No really, the GOP is blaming a tractor pull
Trump’s Presidency Is Bad for Business His Own – NBCNews.com
 


NBCNews.com
Trump’s Presidency Is Bad for Business His Own
NBCNews.com
Donald Trump’s presidency is bad for business his own. Unless his business is getting presidential business. From golf courses to hotels to fashion, the sprawling brands of the president and his family have been taking hits since Election Day, based and more »

Trump’s Executive Actions May Mean More Headaches For Struggling Congress – NPR
 


NPR
Trump’s Executive Actions May Mean More Headaches For Struggling Congress
NPR
President Trump has recently taken a series of what appear to be bold executive actions to reverse Obama-era policies: declining to re-certify the Iran nuclear deal, halting subsidy payments to insurance companies and setting an expiration date for the and more »

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): trump is politically immature – Google News: The Danger of President Pence – The New Yorker
 


The New Yorker
The Danger of President Pence
The New Yorker
After Trump threatened to totally destroy North Korea, Gail Collins, the Times columnist, praised Vice-President Mike Pence as someone who at least seems less likely to get the planet blown up. This summer, an opinion column by Dana Milbank, of the and more »

 trump is politically immature – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Russian Election Trolls Watched House Of Cards To Learn How To Manipulate Americans – Bleeding Cool News
 


Bleeding Cool News
Russian Election Trolls Watched House Of Cards To Learn How To Manipulate Americans
Bleeding Cool News
Professional Russian trolls tasked by Vladimir Putin to help Donald Trump win the 2016 presidential election used the Netflix drama House of Cards as a training video, according to a report from Yahoo News. The trolls used knowledge aboutAmerican …
‘House Of Cards’ Was Required Viewing At Russian ‘Troll Factory,’ Netflix Drama Used To Explain US PoliticsThe Inquisitrall 6 news articles »

 putin won US 2016 election – Google News

 1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites)

7:26 PM 10/15/2017 Im intact, Tillerson says, brushing off drama with Trump CNBC

Saved Stories Trump Investigations Report Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Report ‘I’m intact,’ Tillerson says, brushing off drama with Trump – CNBC Donald Trump unwittingly tips off that the New York Times is about to drop a major Trump-Russia bombshell Donald Trump may be trying to mount a mental incompetence defense after all Reince … Continue reading“7:26 PM 10/15/2017 – ‘I’m intact,’ Tillerson says, brushing off drama with Trump – CNBC”
1. Trump from mikenova (196 sites): trump authoritarianism – Google News: Cyber cold war is just getting started, claims Hillary Clinton – The Guardian