6:20 AM 11/27/2017 – Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks: Trumps Russian Schizophrenia – POLITICO Magazine | Year’s end unlikely to bring end to Russia probe in Congress | Washington – AP

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Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Гройсман прилетел в Грузию обсудить перспективы сотрудничества (фото)
Merkel’s CDU agrees to pursue grand coalition in Germany
4:52 PM 11/26/2017 fbi criticism Google Search
fbi criticism – Google Search
Rutherford Institute – Wikipedia
Rutherford Institute – Google Search
Jared Kushners Vast Duties, and Visibility in White House, Shrink
‘Better than the Game of Thrones’: Ex-CIA officer Phil Mudd fascinated by timing of Mike Flynn revelations – Raw Story
Top firearms cops suspended in crime and misconduct probe – Scottish Daily Record
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – Washington Post
It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election Peskov Johnson’s Russia List
How to Identify the Kremlin Ruling Elite and its Agents
NEWSWATCH: Putin in the Boot; New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are http://russialist.org/newswatch-putin-in-the-boot-new-sanctions-are-about-to-bite-and-russias-elite-are-spooked-the-personal-sanctions-against-regime-cronies-are-especially-tough-the-economist/ pic.twitter.com/wfdbXX4H7s
Bridging the Scholarship-Policy Divide Johnson’s Russia List
US Envoy to Russia Slams Moscows Pending Curbs on US-funded News Outlets Johnson’s Russia List
Russian President Signs ‘Foreign Agents’ Media Legislation
Beware the Russian Elephant – Google Search
Beware the Russian Elephant – The American Interest
Trump moves to put his own stamp on Voice of America
BBG CEO and Director John F. Lansing – Google Search
Russia law on media not based on reciprocity
John F. Lansing – BBG
Statement from Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) CEO John F. Lansing Regarding the Russian

 

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Year’s end unlikely to bring end to Russia probe in Congress | Washington
 

mikenova shared this story from www.bozemandailychronicle.com – RSS Results in ap_news/washington of type article.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Some Republicans are hoping lawmakers will soon wrap up investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 election that have dragged on for most of the year. But with new details in the probe emerging almost daily, that seems unlikely.

Three congressional committees are investigating Russian interference and whether President Donald Trump’s campaign was in any way involved. The panels have obtained thousands of pages of documents from Trump’s campaign and other officials, and have done dozens of interviews.

The probes are separate from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. Mueller can prosecute for criminal activity, while Congress can only lay out findings, publicize any perceived wrongdoing and pass legislation to try to keep problems from happening again. If any committee finds evidence of criminal activity, it must refer the matter to Mueller.

All three committees have focused on a June 2016 meeting that Trump campaign officials held in Trump Tower with a Russian lawyer and others. They are also looking into outreach by several other Russians to the campaign, including involvement of George Papadopoulos, who pleaded guilty this month to lying to the FBI as part of Mueller’s probe. New threads continue to emerge, such as a recent revelation that Donald Trump Jr. was messaging with WikiLeaks, the website that leaked emails from top Democratic officials during the campaign.

A look at the committees that are investigating, and the status of their work when they return from their Thanksgiving break:

SENATE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE

The Senate intelligence panel, which has been the most bipartisan in its approach, has interviewed more than 100 people, including most of those attending the Trump Tower meeting. Chairman Richard Burr of North Carolina and the panel’s top Democrat, Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, have said they plan to bring in Donald Trump Jr. The president’s son was one of several Trump campaign officials in the meeting.

The committee has looked broadly at the issue of interference, and called in executives from Facebook, Twitter and Google, pushing them to take steps to prevent Russian election meddling on their platforms. Warner told The Associated Press the committee is still looking for more information from those companies, which were initially reluctant to cooperate.

Burr has said that he wants to wrap up the probe by early spring, when congressional primaries begin. While there are many areas of bipartisan agreement on the meddling, it’s unclear whether all members will agree to the final report. It’s also unclear if the report will make a strong statement on whether the Trump campaign colluded in any way with Russia.

Warner said it’s plain there were “unprecedented contacts” as Russians reached out to the Trump campaign but what’s not established is collusion.

HOUSE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE

In the House, Democrats hope the intelligence committee can remain focused on the Russia probe as the panel’s GOP chairman, Rep. Devin Nunes, and other Republicans have launched new, separate investigations into Democrat Hillary Clinton and a uranium deal during President Barack Obama’s administration. Nunes stepped back from the Russia probe in April after criticism that he was too close to the White House, but remains chairman of the committee.

Some Republicans on the panel have grown restless with the probe, saying it has amounted to a fishing expedition and pushing for it to end. Still, the committee has continued to interview dozens of witnesses involved with the Trump campaign, among them several participants in the 2016 meeting. On Nov. 30, the panel will interview Attorney General Jeff Sessions behind closed doors. Lawmakers are interested in Sessions’ knowledge about interactions between Trump campaign aides and Russians, and also his own contacts.

The top Democrat on the panel, California Rep. Adam Schiff, told AP the committee has multiple interviews before the New Year. He said the Republican investigations into Clinton and Obama could be “an enormous time drain,” but they have not yet fully organized. He says the committee must be thorough and he doesn’t believe the Russia investigation should end soon.

SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE

The Senate Judiciary Committee has also divided along partisan lines as Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the panel’s top Democrat, haven’t agreed on some interviews and subpoenas. But as in the House, the panel has proceeded anyway, conducting bipartisan, closed-door interviews with several people who were in the 2016 meeting.

The panel is showing recent signs that it is aggressively pursuing the investigation. The committee is the only one to have interviewed Trump Jr. And just before the Thanksgiving break, it sent Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, a letter asking him to be more forthcoming with the committee.

Grassley has been focused on a law that requires foreign agents to register and the firing of James Comey as FBI director. Along with the other committees, Judiciary is also looking into a dossier of allegations about Trump’s own connections to Russia.

It’s not known if the panel will issue a final report, or if its probe will conclude before next year’s elections.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Trumps Russian Schizophrenia – POLITICO Magazine
 

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The United States should send arms to Ukraine to help in its “self-defense” against Russian aggression. It should hold Russia accountable for its illegal “occupation” of territory there, and push for international peacekeepers. Russian President Vladimir Putin bears the blame for this conflict in Europe, and he will be the “decision maker” on whether to end it too.

At least, that’s according to Ambassador Kurt Volker, the Trump administration’s special envoy charged with ending the war in Ukraine. If this sounds like a perfectly reasonable American policy toward Russia, that’s because it is, and more or less one that either party would pursue. But of course, there’s just one big problem with this: It almost certainly does not fully reflect what the president of the United States actually thinks.

Story Continued Below

In a new interview for The Global Politico, his first extensive one with a U.S. publication since taking on the post this summer, Volker talked at length about just how troubled relations are with Russia these days despite Trump’s hoped-for reconciliation, how the several rounds of talks he’s held with a top Putin adviser have not yet made any progress, and what it’s like to be a special envoy for a secretary of state who’s vowed to get rid of them.

Overall, he said, prospects for peace are so dim he reckons it’s very likely that active fighting will continue a year from now in Ukraine, which has been embroiled in military conflict since 2014, when Russia forcibly annexed the Crimean Peninsula, the first such takeover since World War II in Europe, and fomented a separatist war in eastern Ukraine—leading to international condemnation and, ultimately, sanctions that Putin is desperate to lift.

How likely?

“I’d say it’s at least 80 percent,” Volker told me. “There’s a chance that there won’t be, but the most likely scenario is that this continues,” he added grimly, noting that more than 10,000 people in eastern Ukraine have been killed since the fighting broke out.

To spend time with Volker is to confront the essential schizophrenia of the Trump administration’s Russia policy. His version is what just about any U.S. administration’s view of Russia and the Ukraine conflict would have been. And it’s pretty much consistent with that of others inside the Trump administration with whom I’ve spoken recently: deeply critical of Putin and certainly not swayed by him; concerned that little or no progress can be made on key issues and that the bottom in U.S.-Russia relations has not yet been reached after this past year’s election hacking, tit-for-tat spying accusations, diplomatic expulsions and consulate closure.

Volker said Trump himself is now on board with this version of his Russia policy, if only because Putin’s moves have been so confrontational. “Russia brings it on,” Volker said. “That’s what the president always says: We would like to get along with Russia. But what Russia is doing makes it really hard.”

But of course, this Russia policy is still not exactly Donald Trump’s Russia policy.

Reminders of that come just about every day. Just a few hours before my interview with Volker, in fact, Trump had made a point of calling Putin, and the official readout of their more than hour-long conversation portrayed it as a wide-ranging discussion of Syria, Ukraine, North Korea, ISIS, the Middle East and Central Asia. The decision to speak with Putin drew literal groans from some administration Russia hands, given that it came the day after Putin had been photographed physically embracing the Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad during a meeting in Sochi, and Trump’s statement about the phone call made no mention of any criticism toward Putin’s backing of the Syrian regime or his recent decision to veto a U.N. investigation of the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons.

That did not seem accidental to anyone who has followed Trump’s dealings with the Russian leader. Despite the entreaties of his staff and their views – like Volker’s – that tend to be far more skeptical of the Kremlin strongman, Trump has never fully given up on his hopes of a friendly new era of Russian-American relations. On his recent trip to Asia, he even reignited the controversy over Putin’s 2016 intervention in the U.S. presidential election, suggesting he believed Putin’s denials – over the consistent findings of the U.S. intelligence community. (The White House later clarified, unconvincingly, that Trump hadn’t meant to suggest any such thing.)

All of which puts Kurt Volker right in the unlikely center of the most contentious foreign policy fight of the Trump presidency.

***

There’s no question that Volker, 52, is an unusual figure to have joined the Trump administration. His previous job was executive director of the institute started by Senator John McCain, perhaps Trump’s harshest foreign policy critic within his party and a Russia hawk of long standing who has been particularly pointed about Trump’s praise for Putin. And before that Volker served in a key role working with U.S. allies to counter Russian aggression as ambassador to NATO for President George W. Bush, whose foreign policy Trump spent much of the 2016 campaign bashing as expensive and inept.

Still, Volker pointedly did not sign the letter from a vast array of mainstream Republican national security types disavowing Trump during that campaign. A few of those who did sign it tell me they are glad he is on the case and running what appears to be his own version of a Ukraine policy they can live with; their only question is whether he, and the others who share his views within Trump’s administration, actually matter when it comes to making policy.

Volker also has the questionable distinction of being the only special envoy actually named to the job by Trump Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who has come to office vowing to reorganize the department and eliminate dozens of separate special envoy positions like the one he just created for Volker. And in fact, Volker told me he has only taken on the post in a temporary, volunteer capacity, and that it was necessary because of the “particularly difficult transition” that left the Trump State Department without any political appointee in place to deal with the Russians on Ukraine.

When we spoke, Volker had just returned the previous week from a face-to-face meeting in Belgrade with a top Putin adviser, Vladislav Surkov. The session was their third, but Volker was blunt about what it accomplished: nothing. The talks, he said, were a “step back,” with Surkov reverting to Russia’s initial proposal in September to deploy U.N. peacekeepers in eastern Ukraine along the line currently separating Ukrainian government forces and the Russia-backed separatists. Surkov told reporters after the meeting that Volker had presented 29 separate paragraphs to the Russians and that Surkov had agreed with just three of them.

Either way, the meeting’s failure speaks not only to the difficulty of making peace in Ukraine but also to the troubled state of the current U.S.-Russian relationship.

Just before the latest Ukraine talks, in fact, a new irritant had arisen: the failed effort to get Trump and Putin together during Trump’s recent Asia trip. I had been told that the Russians were angry that Trump and Putin had not held a formal bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the recent summit meeting of world leaders in Asia and that the Trump White House had stumbled in both directions, first rejecting the idea of a meeting between the two leaders and then, when it was clear the Russians were unhappy about it, proposing at the last minute to add a Trump-Putin session only to have the peeved Russians reject it. In fact, the ill-timed Trump phone call with Putin right before my Volker interview had been in part a U.S. effort to smooth over those Russian concerns.

In the interview, Volker seemed to agree that could have been part of the reason for why Surkov had seemed so intransigent at their latest session. “Our third meeting, as you said, was a step back,” Volker told me. “They went back to their original proposal again. I don’t know what the next step after this is. It could be that that happened for completely other reasons having nothing to do with Ukraine, just where we are in our U.S.-Russian relationship. It could have had to do with the lack of a bilateral meeting between President Putin and President Trump.”

In general, I found Volker hardly puffing up the prospects of a grand peace settlement with Putin. He said he found Surkov a useful interlocutor, in that the Kremlin adviser clearly has the president’s ear and comes in his capacity as a “political operative” talking about a fundamentally political decision, not as some powerless functionary from the Russian Foreign Ministry. And he said there are “glimmers” of hope suggesting Putin might actually be ready to find a way out of the “impasse” in eastern Ukraine, given that fighting has more or less stalled and Putin faces tough U.S. and European sanctions because of the Ukraine incursion.

Volker insisted Putin could turn that around by cutting a deal now to end hostilities and bring in outside peacekeepers.

“By invading the country and taking part of the territory, they’ve produced a more nationalist, more Western-oriented, more unified Ukraine than ever existed before,” Volker argued. “That’s exactly the opposite of what they wanted to produce, so it gives them a reason to say, ‘Well, we’re not getting out of this what we wanted. It’s costing us a lot to do it, both in a very specific sense of a military operation and civilian administration,’ but it’s also costing in terms of sanctions, their reputation, their relationship with the European Union, their relationship with the United States. So they might have an interest in resolving this.”

Still, to hear Volker’s account is not exactly to listen to a conflict on the brink of resolution. Not only is Trump’s personal commitment to pushing Putin and forging peace in Ukraine highly suspect, but Putin himself would seem to have little reason to take such action now – especially with his own reelection looming in March of 2018, and the conflict with Ukraine inevitably something that needs to be portrayed as a Russian success.

Then there’s the equally complicated U.S. side of the equation.

Volker and others inside the administration are clearly having to sell their mission to Trump too and not just the Russians. Their case to Trump goes something like this: You say you want better relations with Moscow. Well, that’s not possible with the Russians still supporting a shooting war in Ukraine and subject to tough U.S. and European sanctions as a result. “If we are going to have any improvement in U.S.-Russia relations,” Volker said, “we don’t want to stay where we are. We’d like for this to be more constructive,” and for that to be the case “we’re going to have to see progress in Ukraine.”

Volker says Trump gets it. “I know, having heard from the president directly on this, he wants to do this. He wants to make peace; he wants to see this resolved; he wants to see Ukraine get its territory back. It’s crystal clear.”

The most pressing current issue that could well blow up Volker’s talks – and further erode Trump’s hopes of improved relations with Putin – are weapons sales to Ukraine. After months of internal debates, both the Pentagon and the State Department have reportedly recommended Trump approve a $47 million package of arms, including Javelin anti-tank missiles that Ukraine has heavily lobbied for. But Trump himself has not yet signed off and many Russia watchers believe he remains reluctant to do so; with the Russian presidential election looming and the fate of the Ukraine talks with Surkov still unclear, it’s possible the U.S. may not act on the recommendation anytime soon. “There isn’t any decision here,” Volker said.

Several sources have told me Volker has been a strong advocate for the arms sales, and he made clear in our interview that he supports the idea.

“There isn’t anything compelling that I can see as to why Ukraine should be a special case, why we wouldn’t do that, especially when they’re actively trying to defend their territory,” Volker said, before walking through “the arguments that people made in the past” and which “I don’t think hold a lot of water,” from the prospect that sending advanced U.S. arms to the Ukrainians could actually backfire and cause an escalation in the fighting to the idea that it would embolden Ukrainians to keep fighting and refuse to come to the negotiating table.

I asked one veteran Russia hand, a former senior State Department official, what to think about those arguments. Volker, the former official said, is on the right side. But Trump – as far as anyone can tell – is not.

And what does that do to Volker’s credibility with the Russians he’s supposed to be negotiating with?

You don’t have to be a veteran Kremlinologist to know the answer to that one.

Susan B. Glasser is POLITICO’s chief international affairs columnist. Her new podcast, The Global Politico, comes out Mondays. Subscribe here. Follow her on Twitter @sbg1.

Гройсман прилетел в Грузию обсудить перспективы сотрудничества (фото)
 

mikenova shared this story from Информационное агентство УНИАН.

Гройсман начал официальный визит в Грузию / фото УНИАНГройсман начал официальный визит в Грузию / фото УНИАН

Грузия входит в топ-20 перспективных рынков для украинского экспорта, и страны планируют увеличить товарооборот до 1 млрд долл. в год.

Читайте такжеЕвропарламент поддержал новый формат “Восточного партнерства” для Украины, Грузии и Молдовы

Об этом сообщила пресс-служба правительства со ссылкой на слова премьер-министра Владимира Гройсмана во время встречи с главой правительства Грузии Георгием Квирикашвили.

Он отметил, что если в прошлом году товарооборот между государствами составил почти 500 млн долл, то за 7 месяцев текущего года превысил 345 млн долл.

«Сейчас мы ставим задачу довести товарооборот до 1 млрд долл, – сказал Гройсман. – Среди перспективных направлений сотрудничества – агросектор, туризм, энергетика”.

Гройсман также отметил, что одним из наиболее перспективных направлений работы является развитие транзитного потенциала двух государств. Он подчеркнул, что сочетание географических и транспортных возможностей Киева и Тбилиси может и должно стать важной составляющей международной инициативы «Новый шелковый путь».

Глава правительства Грузии поддержал украинского премьера.

“Новый шелковый путь невозможен без Украины. У вас есть выход в Европейский Союз, у нас – в Китай, с которым действует режим беспошлинной торговли”, – сказал Квирикашвили.

В этом контексте Гройсман напомнил, что в сентябре текущего года в Одессе подписан Меморандум о сотрудничестве между «Укрзализныцей», «Грузинской железной дорогой» и «Азербайджанской железной дорогой», который будет способствовать развитию железнодорожных маршрутов через Кавказ в направлении Украины и Евросоюза и в обратном направлении.

«У нас есть предварительные договоренности о создании совместных транспортных структур, тарифной политике. Надо ускорять этот процесс. Уверен, что наши переговоры дадут дополнительный импульс этому процессу», – отметил Гройсман.

Он также предложил грузинской стороне продумать возможности привлечения украинских компаний к реализации инфраструктурных проектов в рамках проекта «Нового шелкового пути».

Как сообщал УНИАН, премьер-министр Украины Владимир Гройсман 27 ноября начал официальный двухдневный визит в Грузию. Глава правительства проведет переговоры с Президентом Грузии Георгием Маргвелашвили, премьер-министром Грузии Георгием Квирикашвили, председателем парламента Грузии Иракли Кобахидзе, примет участие в экономическом форуме «Один пояс – один путь».

Merkel’s CDU agrees to pursue grand coalition in Germany
 

mikenova shared this story from Reuters: World News.

BERLIN (Reuters) – Leaders of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative party agreed on Sunday to pursue a “grand coalition” with the Social Democrats (SPD) to break the political deadlock in Europe’s biggest economy.

4:52 PM 11/26/2017 fbi criticism Google Search
 

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Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks fbi criticism – Google Search Rutherford Institute – Wikipedia Rutherford Institute – Google Search Jared Kushners Vast Duties, and Visibility in White House, Shrink ‘Better than the Game of Thrones’: Ex-CIA officer Phil Mudd fascinated by timing of Mike Flynn revelations – Raw Story Top firearms cops … Continue reading“4:52 PM 11/26/2017 – fbi criticism – Google Search”

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The Rutherford Institute is a non-profit organization based in Charlottesville, Virginia, US dedicated to the defense of civil liberties and human rights. The organization was founded in 1982 by John W. Whitehead, who continued to be its president as of 2015.[1] The Rutherford Institute offers free legal services to those who have had their rights threatened or violated. The Rutherford Institute has a network of affiliate attorneys across the United States and funds its efforts through donations. In addition to its offer of legal services, the organization offers free educational materials for those interested in the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights. The Rutherford Institute also publishes a weekly commentary by Whitehead which is published in hundreds of newspapers and web publications, including The Huffington Post and LewRockwell.com.[2]

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Jared Kushners Vast Duties, and Visibility in White House, Shrink
 

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Mr. Kelly disputed that in an interview on Friday. “There was honestly never a time when I contemplated getting rid of Jared and Ivanka,” Mr. Kelly said. He also said the Office of American Innovation, run by Mr. Kushner, had demonstrated its value, noting that he had recently sent some members of its team to Puerto Rico to report back on conditions on the hurricane-ravaged island.

And in an email forwarded by the White House, the president said on Friday that he still relied on Mr. Kushner. “Jared is working very hard on peace between Israel and the Palestinians, and the last thing I would ever do is get in the way of that possibility,” Mr. Trump said. “Jared has been very effective since the earliest days of the campaign and the same is true today. He understood the movement then and has been helpful implementing the agenda the American people voted for since.”

Determining anyone’s place in Mr. Trump’s orbit, of course, is a hazardous exercise. The president’s affections are fickle, and he tends to keep relationships open even if they are strained. At one point, Mr. Trump is said to depend less on Mr. Kushner, and the next he checks in with his son-in-law about the Roy Moore Senate race in Alabama to gauge his own potential reactions, according to one person familiar with the conversations.

But even Mr. Kushner’s supporters acknowledged that his role had evolved. In their view, that reflected his success, not failure. By helping to push out Mr. Priebus and Stephen K. Bannon, the president’s chief strategist and acerbic nationalist infighter, they said, Mr. Kushner helped stabilize the White House, allowing him to focus on his own projects rather than feeling compelled to weigh in on so many different issues.

In the first months of the administration, Mr. Kushner typically would spend five or six hours a day with the president in what his advocates described as playing defense, making sure others were not gaming the system by persuading Mr. Trump to make decisions without consulting others who had interest in the issues. Now under a less freewheeling system, Mr. Kushner and other aides are expected to stay in their own lanes.

Critics take a less generous view. Rick Tyler, a Republican strategist, said the “magical powers” ascribed to Mr. Kushner early on seemed to have faded. “As long as Jared was seen and not heard, he was able to play the role of wonder boy,” he said. “But now he is no longer seen, and we are only left to wonder about the boy whose father-in-law placed the hope of unraveling the world’s most intractable public policy puzzles from peace in the Middle East to reinventing government” in him.

Speculation about Mr. Kushner’s role comes as the long shadow of the special counsel’s investigation darkens the White House. Investigators have asked witnesses about Mr. Kushner’s foreign policy role during the campaign and the presidential transition, including his involvement in a debate over a United Nations Security Council resolution condemning Israel’s construction of settlements in the occupied West Bank, as The Wall Street Journal has reported.

One person familiar with the questioning, who asked not to be identified discussing the investigation, said the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, appeared to be exploring Mr. Kushner’s role as part of his examination of Michael T. Flynn, who went on to become Mr. Trump’s national security adviser before being forced out after 24 days for not being forthcoming about his contacts with Russia’s ambassador.

Mr. Kushner has yet to be interviewed by Mr. Mueller’s team. Worried that his conversations might have been picked up on a government-authorized wiretap or perhaps by Russia or China, Mr. Kushner has become increasingly cautious about how he communicates, even with friends.

The scrutiny by Mr. Mueller upended Mr. Kushner’s initial hopes, according to some colleagues. Mr. Kushner expressed relief over Mr. Mueller’s appointment in May, assuming that the prosecutor’s inquiry would effectively freeze congressional investigations and therefore free up the White House to pursue its legislative agenda.

To some, that suggested he did not get it, that he did not fully grasp how the special counsel would scrutinize every single thing he had done in business, during the transition and during the campaign. And the emergence of Mr. Mueller has not halted the House or Senate inquiries; Mr. Kushner has since been interviewed by congressional investigators.

Some friends said Mr. Kushner and his wife were at times so discouraged by their brief White House careers — and their shrinking social circle — that they would leap at a chance to gracefully return to New York. At one point this fall, a scenario circulated in which Ms. Trump could replace Nikki R. Haley as ambassador to the United Nations if Ms. Haley replaced Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson. (Aides to Mr. Trump said they never heard that discussed internally, and the latest betting now has Ms. Haley staying put.)

Others in the couple’s orbit, however, said that whatever their frustrations, they have found more satisfaction in recent months now that Mr. Bannon is no longer inside the West Wing fighting them, and that they are likelier to stay for the foreseeable future. Mr. Kushner’s father, Charles, has urged his son to hang on, arguing that otherwise he will become the fall guy for White House mistakes, according to someone in Jared Kushner’s circle.

“Jared’s role working for President Trump is just as important as it was Day 1, only now he doesn’t have to worry about babysitting others,” said Jason Miller, a campaign adviser who remains close to the White House. “His focus was always supposed to be the president’s big-picture, long-term projects, and now Jared can work on those uninterrupted.”

New York is not exactly a trouble-free zone for Mr. Kushner either. He would presumably resume running his family’s real estate empire, now struggling to save its crown jewel, a Manhattan skyscraper. The building at 666 Fifth Avenue is awash in $1.2 billion in debt, and a key business partner recently declared that a redevelopment plan created by Mr. Kushner before he joined the government is unfeasible.

Mr. Kushner arrived in the White House with an expansive portfolio. In addition to Middle East peace, he served as the president’s intermediary with MexicoChina and the Arab world. He traveled to Iraqwearing a flak vest over his blue blazer and button-down shirt. His high profile generated magazine covers and late-night comic riffs. Even some inside the West Wing began referring to him as “the secretary of state.”

In the early months, Mr. Kushner brokered a tense telephone call between Mr. Trump and Mexico’s president and arranged a summit meeting with President Xi Jinping of China that transformed his father-in-law’s approach toward Beijing. He organized Mr. Trump’s first overseas trip with an opening stop in Saudi Arabia, where the president aligned himself with Sunni Arabs confronting Iran.

Mr. Kushner has since stepped back from the China relationship. He joined Mr. Trump in Beijing this month but did not accompany the president on his entire Asia trip. He remains the point person with Saudi Arabia, where he recently visited and talked late into the night with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. He is also working with the team renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement and developing a plan to overhaul re-entry into American society for prisoners.

But Mr. Kushner, new to government, has found it confounding at times. And Mr. Priebus’s early question about the mandate of Mr. Kushner’s innovation office was never fully resolved. Sometimes called “Jared’s island” by White House aides, it has remained a jumble of seemingly random projects, ranging from addressing the nation’s opioid crisis and infrastructure needs to trying to modernize the government’s antiquated computer systems.

Corporate leaders were recruited to give input at round-table discussions organized by Mr. Kushner. But by last summer, some executives were fed up with talk-a-thons. They complained to Gary D. Cohn, the president’s national economic adviser, who in turn told Mr. Kushner’s aides not to convene another listening session unless it had a compelling purpose and produced results.

Two White House councils of business leaders were disbanded in August after an exodus of members upset with the president’s failure to more forcefully condemn violence at a rally of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va.

Other initiatives backed by Mr. Kushner have proved more fruitful. Congress appears to be on the verge of creating a $500 million fund to help agencies modernize outdated information technology systems, some of which are at least 40 years old.

With Mr. Kushner’s support, the Department of Veterans Affairs also developed a plan to erase a longstanding electronic gap between the medical records of service members and veterans that has hurt patient care for years.

But Mr. Kushner’s push for technological advances is hobbled by a lack of permanent officials to carry out policy changes at the agency level. The White House has failed to name chief information officers for nine major agencies, including Defense, Treasury and Homeland Security. Even the federal chief information officer is only an acting official, and the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy is largely a ghost town.

The innovation office is providing political cover and “a push from the top,” said Max Stier, the president of the Partnership for Public Service, a nonprofit organization that analyzes the effectiveness of the government. “But at the end of the day, what the White House does doesn’t matter if it doesn’t get implemented at the agencies where the real action takes place.”

Continue reading the main story

‘Better than the Game of Thrones’: Ex-CIA officer Phil Mudd fascinated by timing of Mike Flynn revelations – Raw Story
 

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Raw Story
‘Better than the Game of Thrones’: Ex-CIA officer Phil Mudd fascinated by timing of Mike Flynn revelations
Raw Story
Former CIA agent Phil Mudd explained to CNN’s Jim Acosta that the timing of revelations from special counsel Robert Mueller has been sequenced to increase pressure during each subsequent phase of the investigation. ‘Let’s focus on not only what he can …
Top firearms cops suspended in crime and misconduct probe – Scottish Daily Record
 

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Scottish Daily Record
Top firearms cops suspended in crime and misconduct probe
Scottish Daily Record
He was responsible for operational support, custody and criminal justice, which included firearms and counter terrorism. Both Kinnell and Glass reported to him on a daily basis. The new complaints are not linked to the separate PIRC investigations into …and more »
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – Washington Post
 

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FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
Washington Post
EDITOR’S NOTE _ One in a series of stories on the findings of an Associated Press investigation of the Russian hackers who disrupted the U.S. presidential election in 2016. Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not and more »
It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election Peskov Johnson’s Russia List
 

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Dmitry Peskov file photo adapted from image at kremlin.ru/wikimedia commonsMOSCOW. Nov 17 (Interfax) – Russian President Vladimir Putin has yet to announce whether he will run for re-election, his spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said.

“It is not yet unclear whether Putin will run for the re-election. As you know, he did not say anything about it,” Peskov told reporters, replying to a question as to whether the possibility of involving Alexei Kudrin in writing the economic section of the president’s electoral program was discussed at Putin’s meeting with him.

Peskov described this question as inappropriate in this regard.

Related

Interfax: Putin has not yet decided whether he will run for president in 2018 – PeskovJanuary 29, 2016In “Politics, Government, Protests, Elections”

Issue of Putin’s nomination as candidate in 2018 presidential elections not yet on Kremlin agenda – PeskovJuly 6, 2017In “Politics, Government, Protests, Elections”

Denying Putin Wedding, Peskov Says Leave the President AloneSeptember 26, 2013In “Politics, Government, Protests, Elections”

How to Identify the Kremlin Ruling Elite and its Agents
 

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November 13, 2017

Flowers were laid at the site where Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov was assassinated in Moscow on February 27, 2015. Nemtsov was a prominent critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin. (steven_n_maher, Flickr)

On August 2, 2017, US President Donald J. Trump

signedH.R. 3364, Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA),

 into law. Section 241 of the Act calls on “the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence and the Secretary of State” to submit to Congress a detailed report—with the option of making part of it classified—including “identification of the most significant senior foreign political figures and oligarchs in the Russian Federation, as determined by their closeness to the Russian regime and their net worth.” Section 241 mandates that the report address the relation of these persons with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and identify their corruption, estimated net worth, and known sources of income. The section also poses similar questions about Russian parastatal entities of diffuse ownership but serving the state. The Kremlin Report, as it might be termed, is due on or around February 1, 2018.

Section 241 has generated intense interest, even anxiety, within Moscow’s political and business classes, more so than any other section of H.R. 3364. It is clear why.

Speculation is abundant in Moscow

 about who among political figures, oligarchs, and others may be listed, and what that might mean for them, for Russia’s ruling political and business elite in general, and for Russia’s already beleaguered standing in the West.

These anxieties suggest that the Kremlin Report can serve US, Western, and genuine Russian interests in two ways:

 First, it can signal to the current Russian political and business classes that, as individuals, their interests would best be served by maintaining a distance from the Putin regime. It also may indicate that these groups would be better off if the Russian leadership refrained from starting new aggressive wars or attacking the political system of the United States and other democratic countries, as it did during the 2016 US presidential campaign and subsequent elections throughout Europe.

 Second, the Kremlin Report’s identification of corrupt individuals close to the Putin regime may expose them to increased scrutiny and potential action by those US government institutions enforcing US laws and regulations beyond sanctions, such as measures against money laundering and other financial malfeasance, e.g., Treasury’s Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), among others. That process could in turn lead to future actions to freeze the assets of corrupt individuals and, at the right point, legal processes to return ill-gotten assets to the Russian people.

Metrics for Identifying Senior Political Figures, Oligarchs, and Parastatal Entities Close to the Kremlin

Senior political figures, oligarchs, and parastatal entities constitute what we may call members of the Russian ruling elite. Section 241 stipulates several metrics to be used in the identification of them. We note two:

  • Closeness of senior political figures, business people, or parastatal entities to the Russian political regime. This could be measured a number of ways, including involvement (open or hidden) in the Putin regime’s aggressive (or even illegal) actions. Such actions include Russia’s interference in the 2016 US presidential election, as well as its military aggression against Georgia and Ukraine, including the purported annexation of Crimea; responsibility for bombing civilians in Chechnya and Syria; and murders of Yuriy Shchekochikhin, Anna Politkovskaya, Alexander Litvinenko, Sergei Magnitsky, Boris Nemtsov, and other opposition politicians, civil activists, journalists, and lawyers.
  • Involvement of political figures, businessmen, and parastatal entities close to the Putin regime in corruption that allowed them to enrich themselves at the expense of the Russian people. As Section 241 suggests, the Russian political elite has developed a sophisticated system of kleptocracy in which public assets are controlled (and regularly plundered) by a small circle of people close to Putin.

We, therefore, suggest that in compiling the report, the US administration apply the following three criteria:

  1. The person named is close to the Russian regime, measured by his or her involvement in planning, ordering, preparing, financing, executing, or otherwise supporting the aggressive, corrupt, or criminal actions noted above; or
  2. The person’s fortune has been made through corrupt commercial operations with the Putin regime for the sake of personal gain; or
  3. The person has held assets for Putin in what appears to be a corrupt fashion, even if he or she personally is not involved in the actions mentioned above, or his or her known personal fortune is not great enough to be considered of “oligarch” scale.


Earned wealth in itself should not be regarded as objectionable.

 Russians who have pursued the American (indeed, universal) dream of personal enrichment through outstanding entrepreneurship should be appreciated, not penalized. Further, formal rank is not dispositive. As the Panama Papers have revealed, often the big crooks are little known and have no official rank.

It is critical that persons are named in the Kremlin Report only on the basis of reliable information. Fortunately, the Kremlin political class, Putin, his friends, and their businesses have been extensively studied by credible researchers. The sources are many and the possibilities to cross check them for quality are ample. Plenty of disinformation exists, but with sufficient knowledge of how to assess sources, disinformation can be disregarded.

What Categories Should the Kremlin Report Include?  

Applying the criteria discussed above, the senior political figures, oligarchs, and parastatal entities in the Russian Federation linked to the Kremlin—those people intended to be listed in the Kremlin Report—are best grouped into seven categories:

 1.     Senior political figures, parastatal entities, or business people responsible for aggressive, corrupt, or criminal operations within and outside the Russian Federation as noted above.

  • We note a sub-category of oligarchs and others working with the Kremlin to advance aggressive foreign actions, such as organizing mercenary forces in Ukraine and Syria, or advancing cyberwarfare/disinformation, and recommend their inclusion;

2.     Putin’s close circle of contemporary friends from St. Petersburg, with whom he has done business since the early 1990s. They are commonly called his cronies and are well identified.  The US government and European Union (EU) have already designated a number of them in the Ukraine-related sanctions;

3.     Golden children.  To a considerable extent, cronies have transferred their wealth to their children, who in some cases have become top executives. These people appear to have become full-fledged cronies in their own right;

 4.     Personal friends of Putin who hold considerable wealth for him. Some have been revealed by the Panama Papers and Russian

Forbe

s;

 5.     The popularly-acclaimed “oligarchs,” who are big businessmen profiting greatly from direct business with the Kremlin. Some of these individuals are co-owners of companies with cronies. Others have operated as fronts for Kremlin leaders.

  • Note:  Russia’s wealthy businessmen should not be presumed to warrant listing simply by virtue of their wealth.  Many made their fortunes before Putin and, to survive, are forced to pay large tributes to the Kremlin. Including such persons in the Kremlin Report would not appear consistent with the intent of Section 241;

6.     Corrupt state enterprise managers who owe their positions to their close personal relations with Putin and utilize their positions for gross larceny; and

7.     The relevant parastatal entities that are companies owned by the people noted in category six.

Preparation of the Kremlin Report will be a labor-intensive project.  It is worth the effort because, among other things, it would demonstrate that whatever speculation exists to the contrary, the Trump administration, like previous US administrations, will respond with determination to counter Russian aggression against the United States, our European allies, and Russia’s neighbors—Ukraine and Georgia. Thus far, the administration appears to be taking Russia sanctions seriously, judging by the guidance for CAATSA implementation, which it recently issued.  It is our hope, and expectation, that the administration will show the requisite commitment to preparation of a strong, credible report as called for by CAATSA’s Section 241.

Anders Åslund is a senior fellow in the Atlantic Council’s Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center. He is a leading specialist on economic policy in Russia, Ukraine, and East Europe. He has served as an economic adviser to several governments, notably the government of Russia (1991-94), and he has published fourteen books, including three about Russia’s economic reforms. 
Daniel Fried is a distinguished fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Future Europe Initiative and Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center. In the course of his forty-year Foreign Service career, he played a key role in designing and implementing American policy in Europe after the fall of the Soviet Union. Ambassador Fried helped lead the West’s response to Moscow’s aggression against Ukraine starting in 2014: as State Department coordinator for sanctions policy, he crafted US sanctions against Russia, the largest US sanctions program to date, and negotiated the imposition of similar sanctions by Europe, Canada, Japan, and Australia.
Andrei Illarionov is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute’s Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity. From 2000 to December 2005, he was the chief economic adviser of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Andrei Piontkovsky is a visiting fellow at the Hudson Institute and senior adviser to the Free Russia Foundation. He is the author of several best-selling books on the Putin presidency in Russia, including, Another Look Into Putin’s Soul.

NEWSWATCH: Putin in the Boot; New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are http://russialist.org/newswatch-putin-in-the-boot-new-sanctions-are-about-to-bite-and-russias-elite-are-spooked-the-personal-sanctions-against-regime-cronies-are-especially-tough-the-economist/ pic.twitter.com/wfdbXX4H7s
 

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NEWSWATCH: “Putin in the Boot; New sanctions are about to bite, and Russia’s elite are…http://russialist.org/newswatch-putin-in-the-boot-new-sanctions-are-about-to-bite-and-russias-elite-are-spooked-the-personal-sanctions-against-regime-cronies-are-especially-tough-the-economist/ … 

Bridging the Scholarship-Policy Divide Johnson’s Russia List
 

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Bookcase file photo, adapted from image at nlm.nih.gov(PONARS Eurasia – ponarseurasia.org – Regina Smyth, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science and Law, Indiana University – November 16, 2017)

How can scholars make significant contributions to policy making? Reflecting on a grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York to strengthen regional studies training at U.S. universities, Indiana University’s Russian Studies Workshop organized a roundtable at last week’s ASEEES conference in Chicago that featured four outstanding scholar/practitioners. Panel chairperson, Michael Kimmage, professor of history at Catholic University and a former member of the U.S. Secretary of State’s Office of Policy Planning for Russia and Eurasia, prompted participants to identify how scholarly and think tank expertise has proven valuable in policy formation, and to highlight critical gaps in regional studies knowledge.

Panelists approached the questions by identifying Russian regional studies as a community of specialists that spans universities and colleges, government, think tanks, NGOs, the private sector, and foundations. Each speaker stressed the crucial role for networks, skills, and practices that can transcend the boundaries that divide the community and enable broad discussion aimed at more effective, fact-based policy decisions. Panelists unanimously agreed that academics’ greatest contribution to policy relevance lies in their core missions as university and college faculty: deep, original research and training of the next generation of regional specialists.

Dr. Celeste Wallander, president and CEO of the U.S. Russia Foundation and former special assistant to the president and senior director for Russia/Eurasia on the National Security Council, argued that university-based scholars make a profound contribution by preparing the next generation of informed and engaged students at all levels. At the same time, Dr. Wallander emphasized the need for universities to do a better job training students. The urgent demands of global events means that strong prior preparation is essential for effective decision-making as there is little time to stop and consider new research. She stressed that policymakers must have the skills to assess causality with fact-based analysis, and to communicate clearly in sharply argued, brief texts. While each panelist underlined this call for effective writing, Dr. Kimmage added that precision is also essential for oral communication, noting that fifteen-minutes constitutes a long presentation in the government context.

Dr. Jeffrey Mankoff, deputy director and senior fellow at the Russia and Eurasia Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and former adviser on U.S.-Russian relations at the U.S. Department of State, reiterated the critical role of university-based training and research in accumulating expertise. He argued that academics can do more to bridge the gap between the scholarly and policy communities. In general, he said, academic work often lacks influence because it is not accessible. He echoed the panel’s call for clearly articulated ideas, stressing that academic work permeates the policy community when it is closely tied to real world puzzles and challenges.

Dr. Mankoff argued that think tanks play an important role in forging networks of D.C-based scholars that inform the international policy community and shift decision-making frames. Echoing Dr. Wallander’s emphasis on the importance of university-based research, he argued that think tanks are distinct from universities in two ways. First, the boundaries between think tanks and government are porous. Ideas generated in think tanks filter into public discussions through personal networks, reports, media appearances, and participation in seminars and conferences. Yet, similar to the dynamics in government, research in think tanks is driven by the urgency of responding to real world problems and demonstrating clear influence in the policy process. The scholarly community works on a different logic, creating lasting knowledge that becomes relevant as real-world challenges shift. With effective communication and deep networks, these are complementary paths to improve policy decisions, inform foreign audiences, and increase popular understanding of Russia beyond the headlines.

Dr. John Slocum, visiting scholar at the Barcelona Center for International Affairs, added the perspective of a long-time program director at the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. For nearly a century, foundations worked to develop regional studies expertise. Initially, they funded policy-relevant research without creating direct linkages across the policy-university divide. This model shifted with the demise of the Soviet Union. Under David Hamburg, former president of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, foundations increasingly brought scholarly attention to critical global problems with the goal of identifying informed policy solutions. They also became more pro-active in constructing platforms for information exchange, interaction, and networks linking specialists in government and academia.

Dr. Slocum emphasized that foundations’ conceptions of policy influence is not limited to U.S. audiences. Foundations endeavor to increase global understanding of U.S. foreign policy goals and policy processes. Foundations also build global policy expertise by providing technical assistance, awarding individual grants, establishing graduate training programs and think tanks, supporting scholarly networks, and promoting outlets, such as journals, to showcase debates.

Dr. Kimmage brought the discussion back to substantive concerns. He identified three critical areas of research that are under-represented in the scholarly community: Russian military affairs and public support for the military, the role of the Russian Orthodox Church in national policy and society, and the complexities of Russian regional politics. Dr. Mankoff added that lack of understanding of U.S. foreign policy beyond the Beltway has emerged as a national security problem that needs to be addressed by a partnership across the regional studies community to educate U.S. citizens how to navigate the complexity of the globalized, international community.

Discussion among these scholars with experience across different regional studies community stressed the importance of continuing to increase the expert influence to produce more effective, fact-based policy decisions. The discussion highlighted steps to meet this challenge:

  • Understand the needs and challenges that face different groups of specialists within the broader regional studies community.
  • Continue to support university-based research and the tools to communicate findings to non-academic specialists.
  • Strengthen student training in essential skills, especially causal inference and clear and focused communication.
  • Sustain networks that link regional studies specialists at universities with those in government, NGOs, think tanks, foundations, and the private sector.
  • Construct a broader definition of relevance that draws on comprehensive research and looks beyond Washington, D.C., to inform non-specialists, and especially ordinary citizens, in the United States, Europe, and the broader global audience.

Article also appeared at ponarseurasia.org/article/tips-experts-bridging-scholarship-policy-divide with link to “Permissions & Citation Guidelines” at ponarseurasia.org/permissions-citation-guidelines bearing the following notice:

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[featured image is file photo]

US Envoy to Russia Slams Moscows Pending Curbs on US-funded News Outlets Johnson’s Russia List
 

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File Photo of John Huntsman, Men in Military Uniforms and Others, adapted from image at army.mil(Voice of America – VOA’s Daniel Schearf contributed to this report – WASHINGTON – November 20, 2017)

[Video and article also appeared at voanews.com/a/us-ambassador-to-russia-attacks-on-us-funded-agencies/4125489.html]

The U.S. ambassador to Russia has attacked Moscow’s move toward forcing nine United States government-funded news operations to register as “foreign agents” as “a reach beyond” what the U.S. government did in requiring the Kremlin-funded RT television network to register as such in the United States.

Ambassador Jon Huntsman said during a visit Friday to the Moscow bureau of the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty that the Russian reaction is not “reciprocal at all” and Moscow’s move toward regulation of the news agencies, if it is implemented, would make “it virtually impossible for them to operate” in Russia.

WATCH: Ambassador Jon Huntsman

He said the eight-decade-old Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA) under which RT has registered as a foreign agent is aimed at promoting transparency, but does not restrict the television network’s operation in the United States.

Russia’s lower house of parliament approved amendments Wednesday to expand a 2012 law that targets non-governmental organizations, including foreign media. A declaration as a foreign agent would require foreign media to regularly disclose their objectives, full details of finances, funding sources and staffing.

Media outlets also may be required to disclose on their social platforms and internet sites visible in Russia that they are “foreign agents.” The amendments also would allow the extrajudicial blocking of websites the Kremlin considers undesirable.

The Russian Justice Ministry said Thursday it had notified the Voice of America (VOA), Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) and seven separate regional outlets active in Russia they could be affected.

In response to a question from VOA, Huntsman said “It isn’t at all similar to what we’re doing under FARA – it’s a reach beyond. And, we just think the principles of free media, in any free society and democracy, are absolutely critical to our strength, health, and well-being. Freedom of speech is part of that. So, that’s why I care about the issue. That’s why we in the embassy care about the issue. And, it’s why we’re going to follow the work that is going on in the Duma and the legislation that is being drafted, very very carefully, because we’re concerned about it.”

The Justice Ministry said the new requirements in Russia were likely to become law “in the near future.”

VOA Director Amanda Bennett said last week that if Russia imposes the new restrictions, “We can’t say at this time what effect this will have on our news-gathering operations within Russia. All we can say is that Voice of America is, by law, an independent, unbiased, fact-based news organization, and we remain committed to those principles.”

RFE/RL President Tom Kent said until the legislation becomes law, “we do not know how the Ministry of Justice will use this law in the context of our work.”

Kent said unlike Sputnik and other Russian media operating in the United States, U.S. media outlets operating in Russia do not have access to cable television and radio frequencies.

“Russian media in the U.S. are distributing their programs on American cable television. Sputnik has its own radio frequency in Washington. This means that even at the moment there is no equality,” he said.

Serious blow to freedom

The speaker of Russia’s lower house, the Duma, said last week that foreign-funded media outlets that refused to register as foreign agents under the proposed legislation would be prohibited from operating in the country.

However, since the law’s language is so broad, it potentially could be used to target any foreign media group, especially if it is in conflict with the Kremlin. “We are watching carefully… to see whether it is passed and how it is implemented,” said Maria Olson, a spokeswoman at the U.S. embassy in Moscow.

The Russian amendments, which Amnesty International said would inflict a “serious blow” to media freedom in Russia if they become law, were approved in response to a U.S. accusation that RT executed a Russian-mandated influence campaign on U.S. citizens during the 2016 presidential election, a charge the media channel denies.

The U.S. intelligence community concluded in early 2017 that Russian President Vladimir Putin personally directed a campaign to undermine American democracy and help real estate mogul Donald Trump win the presidency. A criminal investigation of the interference is underway in the United States, as are numerous congressional probes.

The foreign registration amendments must next be approved by the Russian Senate and then signed into law by Putin.

RT, which is funded by the Kremlin to provide Russia’s perspective on global issues, confirmed last week it met the U.S. Justice Department’s deadline by registering as a foreign agent in the United States.

VOA’s Daniel Schearf contributed to this report.

[featured image is file photo from another occasion]

Russian President Signs ‘Foreign Agents’ Media Legislation
 

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed legislation that empowers the government to designate media outlets receiving funding from abroad as “foreign agents” and impose sanctions against them.

The new law was published on Russia’s official legal information Internet portal on Saturday.

The measure passed the Federation Council, the upper chamber of parliament, Wednesday in a unanimous 154-0 vote, with one abstention.

And it was unanimously approved in the third and final reading in the lower house, the State Duma, on November 15. Within hours, the Justice Ministry sent warnings to several Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) news services.

The letters did not specify what potential restrictions they could face, but lawmakers have said designated media could be subjected to detailed financial-reporting requirements and required to label published material as coming from a foreign agent.

RFE/RL was among several media outlets that Russian officials warned could be labeled a foreign agent, a list that also included the Voice of America (VOA), CNN, and Germany’s international broadcaster, Deutsche Welle.

In response to news that Putin signed the law, RFE/RL President Thomas Kent said, “We cannot speculate at this time on the effect of the new law, since no news organization has yet been specifically named as a ‘foreign agent’ and the restrictions to be imposed on such ‘agents’ have not been announced.”

“We remain committed to continuing our journalistic work, in the interests of providing accurate and objective news to our Russian-speaking audiences,” he added.

John Lansing, director of the Broadcasting Board of Governors which oversees VOA and RFE/RL, said in a statement Saturday, “RFE/RL, VOA, and the other networks of U.S. international media will remain committed to our mission, stipulated by U.S. law, to provide accurate, objective, and comprehensive journalism and other content to our global audiences, including in the Russian Federation.

“We will study carefully all communications we may receive from Russian authorities concerning our operations. While we will not speculate as to the effect that any new steps by the Russian government will have on our journalistic work, any characterization of such steps as reciprocity for U.S. actions severely distorts reality,” Lansing said.

The international rights organization Amnesty International has said the legislation would deal a “serious blow” to media freedom in Russia, although Russian officials have said it would not apply to domestic media.

Russian officials have called the new legislation a “symmetrical response” to what they describe as U.S. pressure on Russian media. On November 13, the Russian state-funded television channel RT registered in the United States under a decades-old law called the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

Lansing, however, denied Moscow’s actions were “symmetrical.” “Russian media, including RT and Sputnik, are free to operate in the United States and can be, and are, carried by U.S. cable television outlets and FM radio stations. However, U.S international media, including VOA and RFE/RL, are banned from television and radio in Russia,” he said in a statement released Saturday.

The U.S. Justice Department required RT to register in the wake of a January finding by U.S. intelligence agencies that RT and Russia’s Sputnik news agency spread disinformation as part of a Russian-government effort to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

In a November 15 statement, RFE/RL said the “situation regarding Russian media in the U.S. and U.S. media in Russia remains vastly unequal.”

“RT and Sputnik distribute freely in the U.S., whereas RFE/RL has lost its broadcast affiliates in Russia due to administrative pressures, and has no access to cable,” it said. “RFE/RL reporters are subject to harassment and even physical attack in Russia.”

Visiting the Moscow bureau of RFE/RL and VOA on November 17, U.S. Ambassador Jon Huntsman said that the Russian legislation was a “big concern” for the United States and that “the principles of free media in any free society and democracy are absolutely critical for strength and well-being.”

Beware the Russian Elephant – Google Search
 

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Beware the Russian Elephant – The American Interest
 

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Framing the Debate

Beware the Russian ElephantPeter Pomerantsev

As the West considers how to respond to the Kremlin’s use of bots, trolls, fake news, and hacks as tools of foreign policy, the way we describe things will define whether we prevail.

The most insidious element of Moscow’s information war could be the very idea of information war itself. In “Don’t Think of an Elephant” the cognitive linguist George Lakoff defines winning and losing in politics as being about framing issues in a way conducive to your aims. Defining the argument means winning it. If you tell someone not to think of an elephant they will end up thinking of an elephant. “When we negate a frame, we evoke the frame…when you are arguing against the other side, do not use their language. Their language picks out a frame—and it won’t…

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Published on: November 20, 2017

Trump moves to put his own stamp on Voice of America
 

mikenova shared this story .

Recent actions have raised fears that Voice of America could serve as an unfettered propaganda arm for President Donald Trump. | Getty

The president dispatches two aides to the broadcasting agency that came under fire over the weekend for its Trump coverage.

By TARA PALMERI

Updated

2017-01-24T07:01-0500

President Donald Trump on Monday dispatched two aides to scope out the studios of Voice of America, heightening concerns among some longtime staffers that Trump may quickly put his stamp on the broadcasting arm that has long pushed U.S. democratic ideals across the world.

The arrival of the two aides – both political operatives from Trump’s campaign – comes after Voice of America received blowback over the weekend for sending out a series of tweets about White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s claims about inauguration crowd size that looked to some like an endorsement of his false statements. The news outlet later deleted one of the tweets.

Story Continued Below

The concern among some staffers is especially acute because Trump’s administration is getting control over the broadcasting agency just weeks after Congress moved to eliminate the board of directors that had served as an integrity check on the organization, instead consolidating power with a CEO position appointed by the president.

As POLITICO reported last month, that change – along with a prior shift that allows the network to legally reach a U.S. audience — had stoked fears among some agency officials that Voice of America could serve as an unfettered propaganda arm for the former reality TV star.

On the first Monday of his administration, Trump, who has flirted with the idea of launching his own TV network, deployed two “transition officials” who will evaluate the managers and studios of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which has an annual budget of $800 million and includes Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, Radio Free Asia and the Middle East Broadcast Networks.

Trump campaign New Hampshire state director Matthew Ciepielowski and Wisconsin communications director Matthew Schuck will be “temporarily assigned” to the CEO suite at the BBG where they will work with senior management “to ensure an open, transparent and seamless transition of the BBG to the Trump Administration,” according to an email by CEO John F. Lansing to staff obtained by POLITICO.

In a statement to POLITICO on Tuesday, Lansing emphasized the agency’s independence.

“The BBG, including Voice of America and our other four networks, is an independent federal agency that is legally mandated to produce objective, professional and independent journalism designed to engage, inform and connect with people around the world in support of freedom and democracy,” Lansing said. “As is routine for many federal agencies during any presidential transition, yesterday we welcomed the two-person landing team from the Trump administration. We look forward to working with them as we continue to fulfill our mission, and support the independence of our journalists around the world.”

The timing of the Trump aides’ arrival is not necessarily unusual – the Obama administration also sent transition officials to the BBG during his transition in 2009.

But some senior staffers have already expressed reservations about the backgrounds of Trump’s political operatives. Schuck, a 2012 graduate from Montgomery College, was a staff writer for the right-wing website the Daily Surge until April 2015.

“There’s concern among the journalists about what these guys are going to be doing,” said the senior VOA staffer. “People are hanging tight, seeing what will happen.”

A spokesperson for Trump did not respond to a request for comment.

Public scrutiny of the broadcasting agency’s articles has already started.

Voice of America director Amanda Bennett explained that she pulled a tweet on VOA’s official account that featured Spicer’s erroneous statement that “this was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period — both in person and around the globe,” following blowback from the account’s 905,000 followers, some of whom argued the agency shouldn’t be promoting his comments without a fact check.

“Irony is that VOA’s reason for existing was to provide truth to those who lived where the government controlled the press,” tweeted Stuart Stevens, a former advisor to Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign, in response to the tweet.

Other Twitter followers called the network “pure propaganda” and “embarrassing,” and urged the network to have “self-respect” for tweeting out Spicer’s words, without additional fact-checking.

Bennett also said she temporarily pulled a story about an ethics complaint lodged against the Trump administration because it didn’t have a response from a Trump representative. The story was reposted later with a comment from Trump’s attorney Sheri Dillon.

Bennett said she was not ordered by the Trump administration to pull the story or the tweet.

“Ever since I arrived here in April I have been extremely firm that we need to follow absolutely the best journalistic practices – which include a diligent focus on facts and objectivity,” Bennett told POLITICO in an e-mail. “For the last nine months, we have been routinely pulling stories that do not meet those standards and asking that they be redone, or that additional reporting be done.”

In a phone conversation later on Monday, Bennett added, “I know that everyone is looking to say that we’re being manipulated by the Trump administration, we’re absolutely not.”

The Broadcasting Board of Governors is the largest public diplomacy program by the U.S. government, reaching an audience of 278 million by broadcasting in 100 countries and 61 languages. Voice of America was created in 1942 during World War II to send pro-democracy news across Europe, as it aimed to counter Nazi and Japanese propaganda. The agency has since evolved into a more traditional news operation, while still pushing out the virtues of democracy worldwide.

Early last month, a provision buried into the National Defense Authorization Act called for disbanding the bipartisan board of the BBG, pleasing critics who said the part-time board was ineffective but alarming others who feared an accountability layer was being swept away.

Story Continued Below

A former board member said on Monday that the editorial team may have not received marching orders from the new administration but that they’re aware of the new power of Trump’s team to take over the organization without the firewall of a bipartisan board.

“They’re clearly just trying to stay in stead with their new bosses to keep their jobs,” said the former BBG board member. “If they’re starting to turn this into Pravda before they are even told to.”

The status of the board is in limbo, however, since Obama added a signing statement to the NDAA, saying it was unconstitutional to get rid of the board because it violates his constitutional right of appointment. Another uncertainty is that Lansing can be replaced at any time for a CEO appointed by the president.

At the editorial level, there’s been caution against posting stories that don’t have a response from the Trump administration, according to a senior VOA staffer. “I think there’s going to be more of a focus on making sure that we’re balanced,” the staffer said.

Bennett said she met on Monday with Trump’s representatives, Schuck and Ciepielowski, who she said will not be involved in news decisions.

“I met with them, we gave them a briefing. We’re going to be showing them around,” she said. “If people are concerned, a lot of people have been through transitions before and this is standard procedure. We gave them the briefing book.”

When asked if she had any concerns about their prior jobs, she said, “They are who they are. They are filling a function that is exactly the same as it would be in any administration.”

And Bennett said Voice of America is not changing course under the new administration. “We are trying to do the best journalism we can, and follow the highest journalistic standards is the only way we’re going to operate,” she said.

BBG CEO and Director John F. Lansing – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from BBG CEO and Director John F. Lansing – Google News.

Story image for BBG CEO and Director John F. Lansing from PR Newswire (press release)

Statement from Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBGCEO John F …

PR Newswire (press release)11 hours ago
… from Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBGCEO John FLansing … under this law, even more restrictions may be placed on the BBG’s …

Story image for BBG CEO and Director John F. Lansing from Voice of America

US Broadcasting Exec: We Respond to Russian Propaganda with …

Voice of AmericaSep 14, 2017
US Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBGdirector John FLansing … with objective news, Broadcasting Board of Governors CEO John Lansing told a Senate panel. … Lansing detailed BBG efforts to counter Russian disinformation by reaching … WATCH: Lansing on countering Russian propaganda.

Story image for BBG CEO and Director John F. Lansing from Politico

Trump moves to put his own stamp on Voice of America

PoliticoJan 23, 2017
Trump campaign New Hampshire state director Matthew Ciepielowski … according to an email by CEO John FLansing to staff obtained by POLITICO. … “The BBG, including Voice of America and our other four networks, is an …

Story image for BBG CEO and Director John F. Lansing from RT

Voice of America faces budget cuts, vows to fight ‘Russian …

RTMay 24, 2017
… and uncensored news and information,” BBG CEO John FLansing … In January this year, former Director of National Intelligence James …
Russia law on media not based on reciprocity
 

mikenova shared this story from NEWS.am (English).

The agency that coordinates the US media believes that the new Russian law with respect to classifying foreign-funded media as “foreign agents” is not reciprocity for Washington’s limiting the Russian media—including RT and Sputnik—activities in the US.

US Broadcasting Board of Governors CEO John Lansing noted about the aforesaid in a statement, reported RIA Novosti news agency of Russia.

“While we will not speculate as to the effect that any new steps by the Russian government will have on our journalistic work, any characterization of such steps as reciprocity for U.S. actions severely distorts reality,” the statement reads, in particular.

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday signed a law, under which media receiving funding from abroad can be classified as “foreign agents.”

John F. Lansing – BBG
 

mikenova shared this story from BBG.

John F. Lansing joined the BBG as CEO and Director in September 2015. Lansing’s previous experience includes nine years as President of Scripps Networks, where he is credited with guiding the company to become a leading developer of unique content across various media platforms including television, digital, mobile and publishing.

Most recently, Lansing was President and Chief Executive Officer of Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing (CTAM), a marketing association comprised of 90 of the top U.S. and Canadian cable companies and television programmers. There, Lansing oversaw the development of business strategies and marketing initiatives that position cable television companies for continued growth as they compete with emerging digital content platforms.

Lansing also brings a deep understanding of journalism from roles as an award-winning Photojournalist and Field Producer, Assignment Manager, Managing Editor, and News Director at several television stations earlier in his career.

Last modified: September 12, 2017

Statement from Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) CEO John F. Lansing Regarding the Russian
 

mikenova shared this story .

RFE/RL, VOA, and the other networks of U.S. international media will remain committed to our mission, stipulated by U.S. law, to provide accurate, objective, and comprehensive journalism and other content to our global audiences, including in the Russian Federation.

We will study carefully all communications we may receive from Russian authorities concerning our operations.  While we will not speculate as to the effect that any new steps by the Russian government will have on our journalistic work, any characterization of such steps as reciprocity for U.S. actions severely distorts reality.  Russian media, including RT and Sputnik, are free to operate in the United States and can be, and are, carried by U.S. cable television outlets and FM radio stations.  However, U.S international media, including VOA and RFE/RL, are banned from television and radio in Russia.

In addition, our journalists on assignment are harassed by Russian authorities and face extensive restrictions on their work.  RFE/RL contributor Mykola Semena recently was sentenced by a Russian court for an article he wrote, and contributor Stanislav Asayev is being held by Russia-backed separatists in Ukraine.  RFE/RL journalists were knocked down and kicked while on assignment in Russia’s southern region of Krasnodar in March, and VOA correspondent Daniel Schearf has been denied a visa to re-enter Russia.

The BBG would be pleased if the current focus on reciprocity between Russian and American media ends by giving U.S. outlets – including U.S. international media such as VOA and RFE/RL – the same rights and opportunities in Russia that Russian networks have in the United States.

CONTACT: Nasserie Carew, 202-203-4400, publicaffairs@bbg.gov

View original content with multimedia:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/statement-from-broadcasting-board-of-governors-bbg-ceo-john-f-lansing-regarding-the-russian-federations-media-law-300561594.html

SOURCE Broadcasting Board of Governors

RELATED LINKS

http://bbg.gov


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12:57 PM 11/26/2017 – Recent Posts

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11:29 AM 11/26/2017 – Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump
10:57 AM 11/26/2017 – Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?
10:04 AM 11/26/2017 – How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – …
9:51 AM 11/26/2017 – Recent Posts
9:45 AM 11/26/2017 – Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you!
9:17 AM 11/26/2017 – AP – FBI didnt tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
All Selected Articles – Russia
6:58 AM 11/26/2017 – RECENT POSTS: It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election
6:48 AM 11/26/2017 – It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election – Peskov
6:33 AM 11/26/2017 – Tweets by +Mike Nova
5:27 AM 11/26/2017 – Beware the Russian Elephant
4:40 AM 11/26/2017 – Obama’s Revenge: New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are spooked…
4:40 AM 11/26/2017 – Obama’s Revenge: New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are spooked…
25.11.2017 19:12
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11:29 AM 11/26/2017 Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump
10:57 AM 11/26/2017 Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?
10:04 AM 11/26/2017 How Trump Will Turn Americas Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of Chinas Daily Beast
9:51 AM 11/26/2017 Recent Posts
9:45 AM 11/26/2017 Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you!
9:17 AM 11/26/2017 AP FBI didnt tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
6:58 AM 11/26/2017 RECENT POSTS: It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election
6:48 AM 11/26/2017 It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election Peskov
6:33 AM 11/26/2017 Tweets by @mikenov
5:27 AM 11/26/2017 Beware the Russian Elephant

 

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11:29 AM 11/26/2017 – Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

11:29 AM 11/26/2017 – Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump
10:57 AM 11/26/2017 – Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

10:57 AM 11/26/2017 – Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?
10:04 AM 11/26/2017 – How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – …

10:04 AM 11/26/2017 – How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast
9:51 AM 11/26/2017 – Recent Posts

9:51 AM 11/26/2017 – Recent Posts
9:45 AM 11/26/2017 – Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you!

9:45 AM 11/26/2017 – Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you!
9:17 AM 11/26/2017 – AP – FBI didnt tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails

9:17 AM 11/26/2017 – AP – FBI didnt tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
All Selected Articles – Russia

All Selected Articles – Russia
6:58 AM 11/26/2017 – RECENT POSTS: It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election

6:58 AM 11/26/2017 – RECENT POSTS: It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election
6:48 AM 11/26/2017 – It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election – Peskov

6:48 AM 11/26/2017 – It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election – Peskov
6:33 AM 11/26/2017 – Tweets by +Mike Nova

6:33 AM 11/26/2017 – Tweets by +Mike Nova
5:27 AM 11/26/2017 – Beware the Russian Elephant

5:27 AM 11/26/2017 – Beware the Russian Elephant
4:40 AM 11/26/2017 – Obama’s Revenge: New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are spooked…

4:40 AM 11/26/2017 – Obama’s Revenge: New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are spooked
4:40 AM 11/26/2017 – Obama’s Revenge: New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are spooked…

4:40 AM 11/26/2017 – Obama’s Revenge: New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are spooked
25.11.2017 19:12

12:05 PM 11/25/2017 – Ariel Cohen: Russia is roaring back to the Middle East while … | Ариэль Коэн…

12:05 PM 11/25/2017 – Ariel Cohen: Russia is roaring back to the Middle East while … | Ариэль Коэн о ситуации в Сирии: Это серьезная победа для России и Ирана
11:29 AM 11/26/2017 Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Saved Stories Saved Stories – None Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump WHISTLEBLOWING VS. LEAKING: THREAT AGAINST COMEY SPARKS BACKLASH – East County Magazine Dan Vallone: Trump has made a habit of appeasing thuggish leaders rather than defending democracy – Concord Monitor What’s Dangerous About Donald Trump’s Foreign Policy? – The Atlantic FBI didn’t … Continue reading“11:29 AM 11/26/2017 – Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump”
10:57 AM 11/26/2017 Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Saved Stories Saved Stories – None Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign? After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button ANALYSIS: Where Trump’s impact is real – The Providence Journal After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button Donald Trump – Google News: Trump … Continue reading“10:57 AM 11/26/2017 – Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?”
10:04 AM 11/26/2017 How Trump Will Turn Americas Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of Chinas Daily Beast

Saved Stories Saved Stories – None How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath – Daily Beast “*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign? Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative – HuffPost Donald … Continue reading“10:04 AM 11/26/2017 – How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast”
9:51 AM 11/26/2017 Recent Posts

The World News and Times 9:45 AM 11/26/2017 Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you! 2:06 PM 11/23/2017 Recent Posts  8:51 AM 11/23/2017 Harding Collusion 11:14 AM 11/22/2017 The Real Winner in Americas Russia Crisis Is China 4:51 AM 11/22/2017 US Navy plane carrying 11 crashes into Pacific Ocean off Japan Washington Post … Continue reading“9:51 AM 11/26/2017 – Recent Posts “
9:45 AM 11/26/2017 Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you!

The Brooklyn Bridge _____________________________ Saved Stories Saved Stories – None Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you! – Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier Trump’s assault on the administrative state will benefit America – Fox News Narcissism prevents global solutions to our shared problems – Press Herald US-Turkish political stew: Kurds, Flynn and even Bharara … Continue reading“9:45 AM 11/26/2017 – Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you!”

Download audio: https://audio.rferl.org/RU/2017/11/26/20171126-090000-RU081-program_hq.mp3

9:17 AM 11/26/2017 AP FBI didnt tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails

Technology FBI didnt tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails Traffic along Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington streaks past the Federal Bureau of Investigation headquarters building Wednesday night, Nov. 1, 2017. Scores of U.S. diplomatic, military and government figures were not told about attempts to hack into their emails even though the FBI knew they … Continue reading“9:17 AM 11/26/2017 – AP – FBI didnt tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails”
6:58 AM 11/26/2017 RECENT POSTS: It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election

6:48 AM 11/26/2017 It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election PeskovNovember 26, 2017 6:33 AM 11/26/2017 Tweets by @mikenovNovember 26, 2017 5:27 AM 11/26/2017 Beware the Russian ElephantNovember 26, 2017 5:14 AM 11/26/2017 Russia law on media not based on reciprocityNovember 26, 2017 4:40 AM 11/26/2017 Obamas Revenge: … Continue reading“6:58 AM 11/26/2017 – RECENT POSTS: It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election”
6:48 AM 11/26/2017 It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election Peskov

Mike Novas Shared NewsLinks Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election Peskov Johnson’s Russia List How to Identify the Kremlin Ruling Elite and its Agents NEWSWATCH: Putin in the Boot; New sanctions are about to bite, and Russias elite are http://russialist.org/newswatch-putin-in-the-boot-new-sanctions-are-about-to-bite-and-russias-elite-are-spooked-the-personal-sanctions-against-regime-cronies-are-especially-tough-the-economist/ pic.twitter.com/wfdbXX4H7s Bridging the Scholarship-Policy Divide Johnson’s Russia List … Continue reading“6:48 AM 11/26/2017 – It is yet unclear whether Putin to run for re-election – Peskov”
6:33 AM 11/26/2017 Tweets by @mikenov

Tweets by @mikenov Mike Nova@mikenov How to Identify the Kremlin Ruling Elite and its Agents http://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/new-atlanticist/how-to-identify-the-kremlin-ruling-elite-and-its-agents#new_tab  How to Identify the Kremlin Ruling Elite and its Agents Criteria for the US Administrations Kremlin Report On August 2, 2017, US President Donald J. Trump signed H.R. 3364, Countering Americas Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), into law…. atlanticcouncil.org 7m Mike … Continue reading“6:33 AM 11/26/2017 – Tweets by @mikenov”
5:27 AM 11/26/2017 Beware the Russian Elephant

Beware the Russian Elephant – Google Search Sunday November 26th, 2017 at 5:26 AM 1 Share Beware the Russian Elephant – The American Interest Sunday November 26th, 2017 at 5:24 AM Comments On: Beware The Russian Elephant 1 Share Framing the Debate Beware the Russian Elephant Peter Pomerantsev   As the West considers how to respond to the Kremlins … Continue reading

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11:29 AM 11/26/2017 – Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

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Saved Stories – None
Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump
WHISTLEBLOWING VS. LEAKING: THREAT AGAINST COMEY SPARKS BACKLASH – East County Magazine
Dan Vallone: Trump has made a habit of appeasing thuggish leaders rather than defending democracy – Concord Monitor
What’s Dangerous About Donald Trump’s Foreign Policy? – The Atlantic
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – ABC News
AP report: FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – PBS NewsHour
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – CBC.ca
Special counsel Robert Mueller to interview Trump’s White House communication chief Hope Hicks about Russian … – Daily Mail
CNN gets last laugh after being attacked by Donald Trump
Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?
After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button
ANALYSIS: Where Trump’s impact is real – The Providence Journal
After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button
Donald Trump – Google News: Trump lashes out at CNN, calls Fox News ‘MUCH more important’ – AOL
Robert Mueller goes all-in
Robert Mueller goes all-in
Michael Flynn flew. Donald Trump and Mike Pence knew.
James Comey tweets about freedom of the press right after Trump slams CNN – Business Insider
After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even bigger Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land
Russian President Putin signs ‘foreign agent’ media law – BBC News
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast
Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath – Daily Beast
“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?
Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative – HuffPost
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

 

Saved Stories – None
Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Earlier this week it was reported that Donald Trump told his daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner that they should resign from the White House and move back to New York in order to protect their own reputations. It was a clear sign of trouble within the Trump family. Now the details of that family feud are starting to leak out, and suffice it to say that Donald is now pissed at his daughter.

Ivanka publicly condemned Republican Senate candidate and alleged child molester Roy Moore, before Donald ultimately ended up endorsing Moore. This left Donald looking foolish, and Moore’s opponent Doug Jones promptly began running ads featuring Ivanka’s words. According to a New York Times report on Saturday night, Donald Trump is now furious at his daughter over the matter (link). He’s venting his “annoyance” at her. He’s muttering things like “Do you believe this?” We’ve heard stories of Trump acting this way toward his advisers before, and it’s only ever ended in one fashion.

It’s extraordinarily difficult to imagine that Donald Trump would outright fire his own daughter from the White House. Then again, he never outright fires anyone. He simply begins nudging them to resign, and making their lives miserable until they comply. We’ve seen him do it to everyone from Reince Priebus to Steve Bannon on down. In any case, there’s reason to believe that Ivanka and Jared really are about to resign and move back to New York City.

As Palmer Report previously laid out, Jared Kushner appears to have planted three stories in the media over the past four days two of them simultaneously with the aim of laying the groundwork for his own resignation and making it Donald Trump’s fault (link). Now we’ve got word that Trump is outright pissed at Ivanka for sabotaging his own political agenda. Something is about to give.

The post Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump appeared first on Palmer Report.

WHISTLEBLOWING VS. LEAKING: THREAT AGAINST COMEY SPARKS BACKLASH – East County Magazine


East County Magazine
WHISTLEBLOWING VS. LEAKING: THREAT AGAINST COMEY SPARKS BACKLASH
East County Magazine
June 14, 2017 (San Diego) — President Donald Trump and his attorney have accused fired FBI director James Comey of being a leaker for providing what they claim was privileged information in memos that Comey arranged for media to receive. But many …

and more »

Dan Vallone: Trump has made a habit of appeasing thuggish leaders rather than defending democracy – Concord Monitor


Concord Monitor
Dan Vallone: Trump has made a habit of appeasing thuggish leaders rather than defending democracy
Concord Monitor
Such a retreat from global leadership harms American interests and sets the stage for future crises as authoritarianism grows stronger across the world. The threat posed by today’s dictators and would-be dictators is nearly as great as in 1946, when 

and more »

What’s Dangerous About Donald Trump’s Foreign Policy? – The Atlantic


The Atlantic
What’s Dangerous About Donald Trump’s Foreign Policy?
The Atlantic
When critics argue that Donald Trump is an exceptionally reckless commander in chief, they tend to highlight how the American president deviates from the norm. By issuing diplomatic pronouncements on Twitter and pronouncing actual diplomats 

FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – ABC News

FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
ABC News
In the absence of any official warning, some of those contacted by AP brushed off the idea that they were taken in by a foreign power’s intelligence service. “I don’t open anything I don’t recognize,” said Joseph Barnard, who headed the personnel 

and more »

AP report: FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – PBS NewsHour


PBS NewsHour
AP report: FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
PBS NewsHour
No one’s ever said to me, ‘Hey Joe, you’ve been targeted by this Russian group,’ said former Navy intelligence officer Joe Mazzafro, whose inbox the hackers tried to compromise in 2015. That our own security services have not gone out and alerted me 
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails USA TODAY

all 13 ABC News

all 10 news articles »

FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – CBC.ca


CBC.ca
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
CBC.ca
Three people familiar with the matter including a current and a former government official said the FBI has known for more than a year the details of Fancy Bear’s attempts to break into Gmail inboxes. A senior FBI official, who was not 

and more »

Special counsel Robert Mueller to interview Trump’s White House communication chief Hope Hicks about Russian … – Daily Mail


Daily Mail
Special counsel Robert Mueller to interview Trump’s White House communication chief Hope Hicks about Russian …
Daily Mail
Trump Jr in return emailed top campaign members about WikiLeaks reaching out, including Hicks. Hicks is not underinvestigation for any criminal wrongdoing and has retained as her attorney Robert Trout, a co-founder of a law firm that has represented 
Dem on Flynn: ‘Karma can be very difficult’The Hill
Did Mueller Break The Law In An Attempt To Set Up President Trump?The Narrative Times

all 42 news articles »

CNN gets last laugh after being attacked by Donald Trump

Donald Trump’s attacks on the media are nothing new. In fact, his attacks on CNN in particular have become nothing short of infamous. But when he decided to slam the cable news network in the midst of what should have been a restful Thanksgiving weekend, CNN decided to fire back directly at him. Suffice it to say that, by Trump’s own quantifiable standards, CNN ended up getting the last laugh.

Trump tweeted “Fox News is MUCH more important in the United States than CNN, but outside of the U.S., CNN International is still a major source of (Fake) news, and they represent our Nation to the WORLD very poorly. The outside world does not see the truth from them!” As Palmer Report reported earlier, this was part of a coordinated and near-simultaneous attack on CNN International on the part of Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin (link). But that’s when CNN decided to fight back.

Just minutes later, the official CNN Communications account on Twitter replied to Donald Trump: “It’s not CNN’s job to represent the U.S to the world. That’s yours. Our job is to report the news.” CNN included the hashtag #FactsFirst along with an emoji of an apple. The apple was part of CNN’s new marketing slogan about an apple being an apple, no matter how many times the propaganda outlets (read: Fox News) might try to tell you that an apple is a banana. CNN’s response was clearly more clever than Trump’s attack to begin with, but as we know, Trump measures these things based on likes and retweets so let’s check the scorecard.

At the time of publication of this article, Donald Trump’s original tweet has 68,000 likes and 19,000 retweets. Meanwhile CNN’s response to Trump has 115,000 likes and 43,000 retweets. In other words, even by Trump’s own standards, CNN clearly won.

The post CNN gets last laugh after being attacked by Donald Trump appeared first on Palmer Report.

Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Earlier this evening, a pair of suspiciously similar stories simultaneously appeared in the New York Times and Washington Post for no good reason. Both stories sought to emphasize that Jared Kushner’s role in the White House is “shrinking” to the point that they both used a variation of that word in their respective titles. Simply put, this kind of thing doesn’t happen. Moreover, both stories appear to have come from Kushner’s own camp. Throw in a third data point, and we may be looking at the groundwork for Kushner’s imminent resignation. Bear with me here.

There’s no way the Times and the Post would both have run this non-event story fed to them by Kushner’s camp, unless they were each under the impression that they were getting it exclusively. As it stands, both newspapers have been left looking foolish. In other words, Kushner burned his trusted political contacts at both news outlets. He used to run his own newspaper. He knows how this works. He must have been so desperate to get this message out right now that he didn’t care what contacts he burned and it suggests that he no longer thinks he’ll need those media contacts going forward anyway.

I’ve run this past some others in the media tonight, and they’ve confirmed that they’ve never seen the New York Times (article) and Washington Post (article) simultaneously run nearly identical non-event stories like this. Still, I was left to wonder if I was reading too much into it. Then I recalled that earlier this week, Vanity Fair ran a story which claims that Donald Trump keeps telling Jared and Ivanka to quit and move back to New York, and acknowledges that Kushner’s camp is the source (link). So now we have three instances of Kushner trying to lay the groundwork for his resignation in the past four days.

Jared Kushner appears to really, really want you to know that his White House role has been marginalized and that there’s no reason for him to stick around. He also wants you to know that Donald Trump has told him to resign from the White House and leave town. This thoroughly feels like Kushner is about to resign and he wants to make sure the public believes that he’s only leaving because he was nudged out, not because he’s running from the Trump-Russia scandal. Stay tuned. This is just the beginning of this storyline.

The post Did Jared Kushner just tip off that he’s about to resign? appeared first on Palmer Report.

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

What is Jared Kushner trying to do here?

ANALYSIS: Where Trump’s impact is real – The Providence Journal


The Providence Journal
ANALYSIS: Where Trump’s impact is real
The Providence Journal
Sidney Milkis and Nicholas Jacobs, both of the University of Virginia, argue that Trump’s deployment of what they call executive-centered partisanship is both in keeping with the modern presidency and a potentially damaging shift in our politics

and more »

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

Now that everyone on the inside and the outside of the Trump-Russia scandal knows Michael Flynn is negotiating a deal, all eyes are on the players in the scandal to see how they try to position themselves next. One of the most telling methods of observing this positioning is to watch what gets planted in the media. This evening two of the nation’s most influential newspapers have published strangely similar stories about Jared Kushner’s shrinking role which tells us at lot.

This kind of thing doesn’t happen by coincidence. The same source has to be behind tonight’s Washington Post article titled “The shrinking profile of Jared Kushner” and tonight’s New York Times article titled “Jared Kushners Vast Duties, and Visibility in White House, Shrink.” Moreover, if you read the articles and examine what kind of inside information they have, it appears both stories were planted by Jared Kushner’s own camp. Translation: he wants someone, perhaps the public in general, perhaps Robert Mueller in particular, to believe that his own role in Donald Trump’s White House is shrinking. But why?

Your guess is as good as anyone else’s. Numerous political pundits have voiced the view this week that Michael Flynn’s testimony will end up being the most harmful to Jared Kushner, because Flynn is close enough to the Russian government to know why Kushner kept secretly meeting with the Russians. In response, Kushner isn’t merely shrinking from public view, in the hope everyone will forget about him. Instead he appears to be making a point of getting the media to write stories about how his White House role has become meaningless anyway.

So what’s the play here? When the week began, Jared Kushner was leaking to the media that Donald Trump keeps telling him and Ivanka to move back home to New York. Now Kushner apparently wants us all to believe that his relevant time in Washington DC has come to an end. Is he laying the groundwork for resigning and going home? Is he trying to send some other message? Who’s he trying to send it to? Stay tuned.

The post After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button appeared first on Palmer Report.

Donald Trump – Google News: Trump lashes out at CNN, calls Fox News ‘MUCH more important’ – AOL


AOL
Trump lashes out at CNN, calls Fox News ‘MUCH more important’
AOL
President Donald Trump on Saturday blasted CNN, calling it a source of “fake” news and comparing it unfavorably to its competitor Fox News. “@FoxNews is MUCH more important in the United States than CNN, but outside of the U.S., CNN International is …
Twitter war anew between Donald Trump and CNNAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog)

all 20 news articles »

 Donald Trump – Google News

Robert Mueller goes all-in

Robert Mueller goes all-in

Robert Mueller goes all-in

This is the hand Robert Mueller has been waiting for

Robert Mueller goes all-in

Robert Mueller was already holding most of the cards when the week began. He had a formal confession from Trump adviser George Papadopoulos, which was going to allow him to take down several upper level Trump advisers, who were eventually going to have to cut deals of their own. One of them, Sam Clovis, was already cooperating as a result. He already had Paul Manafort rotting under house arrest, sending everyone else in Trump’s orbit into a panic. Mueller was already going to win this game. Then he got dealt four aces.

In hindsight, Robert Mueller arrested Manafort and his sidekick Gates, while simultaneously revealing the lenient deal he’d handed Papadopoulos, in order to force the rest of the Trump-Russia players to come to grips with their limited options. Would they rather sit in a cell and await trial, or cooperate and get to move on with their lives? It was a matter of time before someone else decided to do the smart thing and cut deal. But would it be another little fish like Papadopoulos, or would Mueller get lucky and land someone a bit higher up the chain?

Instead, Mueller managed to land arguably the most valuable fish in the entire Trump-Russia sea. Michael Flynn has close enough ties to Russia to know about virtually all of the other communications that Russia had with the Trump regime. Flynn served in the campaign and in the Trump White House. Whether or not he has evidence directly proving Donald Trump’s guilt, he surely has evidence to take down the handful of fish who are even bigger than he is and that’ll force them to cut their own deals.

Robert Mueller has been playing his hand perfectly all along, complete with a poker face that no one involved has been able to read. He skillfully set the stage such that one of the bigger players would end up panicking and cutting a deal. Now, by skill and by luck, he’s holding the perfect hand. Flynn’s cooperation means that he can, and will, go all-in against the entire Trump regime.

The post Robert Mueller goes all-in appeared first on Palmer Report.

Michael Flynn flew. Donald Trump and Mike Pence knew.

There was a movie called Turk 182 about a guy who was trying to expose political corruption. His catch phrase in the film was “Zimmerman Flew, Tyler Knew,” a reminder that very rarely does a top underling indulge in sustained corruption without the top dog knowing about it. Now that Michael Flynn is negotiating a deal to spill his guts, we’re reminded that there’s no way Donald Trump and Mike Pence didn’t know what Flynn was doing with Russia and all Flynn has to do is to demonstrate as much.

During the transition period, Flynn’s several phone calls to the Russian Ambassador in one day weren’t an aberration. The two men had to have been communicating regularly throughout the campaign. Stop and ask yourself why the top foreign policy adviser for the Trump campaign would have been in regular contact with the Russian Ambassador throughout the election. Is this the kind of thing that a top adviser decides to do in his own right, and then decides to keep it hidden from the people he’s working directly under?

At the least, Donald Trump and Mike Pence were aware of what Michael Flynn was doing with Russia, because it would have been too obvious not to have been spotted eventually. At the most, they outright instructed him to remain in contact with Russia. Either way, they knew. In order to honor his plea deal, Flynn will have to spill out every last detail. Somewhere in there, he’ll be able to provide evidence and corroboration that Trump and Pence knew what he was up to.

That alone will be enough to unravel the future political prospects of Donald Trump and Mike Pence both. They knew Michael Flynn was coordinating with the Russian government in his role as a top Trump campaign foreign policy adviser. They ordered it, or encouraged it, or looked the other way. Then they lied about it, repeatedly. They worked to cover it up. That’s obstruction of justice, and maybe a lot more. Flynn flew. Trump and Pence knew. Turk 182.

The post Michael Flynn flew. Donald Trump and Mike Pence knew. appeared first on Palmer Report.

James Comey tweets about freedom of the press right after Trump slams CNN – Business Insider


Business Insider
James Comey tweets about freedom of the press right after Trump slams CNN
Business Insider
Former FBI director James Comey appeared to weigh in after President Donald Trump slammed CNN on Twitter. Comeytweeted tweeted out a quote about freedom of the press shortly after Trump attacked the news network. This is not the first time Comey seems to have tacitly  by the former president and founding father, Thomas Jefferson, shortly after President Donald Trump railed against CNN on Twitter. “.@FoxNews is MUCH more important in  …
Comey shares ‘freedom of press’ post after Trump slams CNNOutlook India
Comey runs to defend CNN after Trump slam but someone should really teach him how to trollBizPac Review
Donald Trump Slams CNN International, Touts Loony Conspiracy WebsiteDeadline
Twitter
all 55 quote about freedom of the press after Trump hits CNNThe Hill (blog)
What Trump Revealed to Russian Officials After Firing ComeyPatheos (blog)

all 5 news articles »

After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even bigger Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land

After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even bigger Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land

After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land

Good news: it’s about to get even worse for Donald Trump

Russian President Putin signs ‘foreign agent’ media law – BBC News


BBC News
Russian President Putin signs ‘foreign agent’ media law
BBC News
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law that allows the government to list any foreign media operating in the country as a foreign agent. The bill, in retaliation for Kremlin-backed broadcaster RT being told to register as a foreign agent in
Russian president Putin signs foreign agent media law to match US actionUSA TODAY 
Putin retaliates for US action against Russian-funded mediawtvr.com
Russia’s Putin signs ‘foreign agents’ media lawReuters
The Express TribuneSplinter (blog)The Drum
all 84 
Putin’s foes deplore US fixation on poll meddlingThe Hindu
In retaliatory move, Putin signs media ‘foreign agents’ lawCNN
ReutersExpress.co.ukNew York Magazine
all 72
 news articles »
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s
Daily Beast
This smacks of authoritarianism, especially for those who have actually lived under conditions where free expression is limited or even actively suppressed. Has there been a more concerted effort to make America’s internet look like China’s? (Or Egypt’s?

and more »

Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath
Daily Beast
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, commonly referred to as the DSMthe guidebook of the American Psychiatric Associationclassifies sociopathy as an antisocial disorder, or having a general disregard for and violation of 

and more »

“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Jared Kushner is up to something tonight

Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative – HuffPost

Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative
HuffPost
The journey of regional and international bargaining over the Middle East has kicked off, with the emergence of the features of realistic understandings in Syria, far removed from the erstwhile delusions about victory, now Syria having been spared from 

and more »

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

On Saturday afternoon, Donald Trump used his Twitter account to take a curiously timed and oddly specific shot at not just CNN, but CNN International in particular. It stood out as bizarre because Trump is so sheltered from the mainstream media universe, and so ignorant of the world at large, it’s unlikely he even knows what “CNN International” is. Then came a near-simultaneous development which not only explains Trump’s tweet, but also reveals that Russian President Vladimir Putin was behind it.

Several news outlets reported on Saturday afternoon that Russia has passed legislation which cracks down on international media outlets trying to operate within its borders by forcing them to register as foreign agents (link). This is clearly an attempt at retaliation on Russia’s part for the recent United States crackdown on Russian state-run propaganda outlets like RT and Sputnik. This also serves to potentially put international reporters in grave danger while operating in Russia, given Putin’s penchant for simply murdering reporters he doesn’t like.

At nearly the same time this story broke, Donald Trump tweeted “Fox News is MUCH more important in the United States than CNN, but outside of the U.S., CNN International is still a major source of (Fake) news, and they represent our Nation to the WORLD very poorly. The outside world does not see the truth from them!” Now we know why. He and Putin are clearly plotting against CNN International’s ability to safely operate inside Russia’s borders, or in any territory where the Russian government has influence.

It’s still not entirely clear how Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin managed to coordinate this plot in advance. The two illegitimate leaders did speak privately by phone earlier this week, so they may have hashed it out at that time. But in any case, there’s no question that Trump just conspired with Putin to purposely jeopardize the international reporters working for a major American news outlet. If any CNN International reporter is murdered in Russia, then Trump is guilty of conspiracy to commit murder.

The post Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN appeared first on Palmer Report.


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10:57 AM 11/26/2017 – Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

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Saved Stories – None

Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button
ANALYSIS: Where Trump’s impact is real – The Providence Journal
After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button
Donald Trump – Google News: Trump lashes out at CNN, calls Fox News ‘MUCH more important’ – AOL
Robert Mueller goes all-in
Robert Mueller goes all-in
Michael Flynn flew. Donald Trump and Mike Pence knew.
James Comey tweets about freedom of the press right after Trump slams CNN – Business Insider
After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even bigger Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land
Russian President Putin signs ‘foreign agent’ media law – BBC News
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast
Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath – Daily Beast
“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?
Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative – HuffPost
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN
Fox News Is ‘Much More Important’ Than CNN, Trump Tweets
As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial
Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump
As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial
Trump’s bluster not matched by changes in US policy – Charleston Post Courier
Gerard Brooker: ‘The abiding danger of Trump’ – Danbury News Times
AP News in Brief at 12:04 am EST – Washington Post
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN
Putin passes law branding international media as foreign agents after US action on Russia’s RT television – New York Daily News

 

Saved Stories – None
Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Earlier this evening, a pair of suspiciously similar stories simultaneously appeared in the New York Times and Washington Post for no good reason. Both stories sought to emphasize that Jared Kushner’s role in the White House is “shrinking” to the point that they both used a variation of that word in their respective titles. Simply put, this kind of thing doesn’t happen. Moreover, both stories appear to have come from Kushner’s own camp. Throw in a third data point, and we may be looking at the groundwork for Kushner’s imminent resignation. Bear with me here.

There’s no way the Times and the Post would both have run this non-event story fed to them by Kushner’s camp, unless they were each under the impression that they were getting it exclusively. As it stands, both newspapers have been left looking foolish. In other words, Kushner burned his trusted political contacts at both news outlets. He used to run his own newspaper. He knows how this works. He must have been so desperate to get this message out right now that he didn’t care what contacts he burned and it suggests that he no longer thinks he’ll need those media contacts going forward anyway.

I’ve run this past some others in the media tonight, and they’ve confirmed that they’ve never seen the New York Times (article) and Washington Post (article) simultaneously run nearly identical non-event stories like this. Still, I was left to wonder if I was reading too much into it. Then I recalled that earlier this week, Vanity Fair ran a story which claims that Donald Trump keeps telling Jared and Ivanka to quit and move back to New York, and acknowledges that Kushner’s camp is the source (link). So now we have three instances of Kushner trying to lay the groundwork for his resignation in the past four days.

Jared Kushner appears to really, really want you to know that his White House role has been marginalized and that there’s no reason for him to stick around. He also wants you to know that Donald Trump has told him to resign from the White House and leave town. This thoroughly feels like Kushner is about to resign and he wants to make sure the public believes that he’s only leaving because he was nudged out, not because he’s running from the Trump-Russia scandal. Stay tuned. This is just the beginning of this storyline.

The post Did Jared Kushner just tip off that he’s about to resign? appeared first on Palmer Report.

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

What is Jared Kushner trying to do here?

ANALYSIS: Where Trump’s impact is real – The Providence Journal


The Providence Journal
ANALYSIS: Where Trump’s impact is real
The Providence Journal
Sidney Milkis and Nicholas Jacobs, both of the University of Virginia, argue that Trump’s deployment of what they call executive-centered partisanship is both in keeping with the modern presidency and a potentially damaging shift in our politics

and more »

After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button

Now that everyone on the inside and the outside of the Trump-Russia scandal knows Michael Flynn is negotiating a deal, all eyes are on the players in the scandal to see how they try to position themselves next. One of the most telling methods of observing this positioning is to watch what gets planted in the media. This evening two of the nation’s most influential newspapers have published strangely similar stories about Jared Kushner’s shrinking role which tells us at lot.

This kind of thing doesn’t happen by coincidence. The same source has to be behind tonight’s Washington Post article titled “The shrinking profile of Jared Kushner” and tonight’s New York Times article titled “Jared Kushners Vast Duties, and Visibility in White House, Shrink.” Moreover, if you read the articles and examine what kind of inside information they have, it appears both stories were planted by Jared Kushner’s own camp. Translation: he wants someone, perhaps the public in general, perhaps Robert Mueller in particular, to believe that his own role in Donald Trump’s White House is shrinking. But why?

Your guess is as good as anyone else’s. Numerous political pundits have voiced the view this week that Michael Flynn’s testimony will end up being the most harmful to Jared Kushner, because Flynn is close enough to the Russian government to know why Kushner kept secretly meeting with the Russians. In response, Kushner isn’t merely shrinking from public view, in the hope everyone will forget about him. Instead he appears to be making a point of getting the media to write stories about how his White House role has become meaningless anyway.

So what’s the play here? When the week began, Jared Kushner was leaking to the media that Donald Trump keeps telling him and Ivanka to move back home to New York. Now Kushner apparently wants us all to believe that his relevant time in Washington DC has come to an end. Is he laying the groundwork for resigning and going home? Is he trying to send some other message? Who’s he trying to send it to? Stay tuned.

The post After Michael Flynn sells out, Jared Kushner hits the panic button appeared first on Palmer Report.

Donald Trump – Google News: Trump lashes out at CNN, calls Fox News ‘MUCH more important’ – AOL


AOL
Trump lashes out at CNN, calls Fox News ‘MUCH more important’
AOL
President Donald Trump on Saturday blasted CNN, calling it a source of “fake” news and comparing it unfavorably to its competitor Fox News. “@FoxNews is MUCH more important in the United States than CNN, but outside of the U.S., CNN International is …
Twitter war anew between Donald Trump and CNNAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog)

all 20 news articles »

 Donald Trump – Google News

Robert Mueller goes all-in

Robert Mueller goes all-in

Robert Mueller goes all-in

This is the hand Robert Mueller has been waiting for

Robert Mueller goes all-in

Robert Mueller was already holding most of the cards when the week began. He had a formal confession from Trump adviser George Papadopoulos, which was going to allow him to take down several upper level Trump advisers, who were eventually going to have to cut deals of their own. One of them, Sam Clovis, was already cooperating as a result. He already had Paul Manafort rotting under house arrest, sending everyone else in Trump’s orbit into a panic. Mueller was already going to win this game. Then he got dealt four aces.

In hindsight, Robert Mueller arrested Manafort and his sidekick Gates, while simultaneously revealing the lenient deal he’d handed Papadopoulos, in order to force the rest of the Trump-Russia players to come to grips with their limited options. Would they rather sit in a cell and await trial, or cooperate and get to move on with their lives? It was a matter of time before someone else decided to do the smart thing and cut deal. But would it be another little fish like Papadopoulos, or would Mueller get lucky and land someone a bit higher up the chain?

Instead, Mueller managed to land arguably the most valuable fish in the entire Trump-Russia sea. Michael Flynn has close enough ties to Russia to know about virtually all of the other communications that Russia had with the Trump regime. Flynn served in the campaign and in the Trump White House. Whether or not he has evidence directly proving Donald Trump’s guilt, he surely has evidence to take down the handful of fish who are even bigger than he is and that’ll force them to cut their own deals.

Robert Mueller has been playing his hand perfectly all along, complete with a poker face that no one involved has been able to read. He skillfully set the stage such that one of the bigger players would end up panicking and cutting a deal. Now, by skill and by luck, he’s holding the perfect hand. Flynn’s cooperation means that he can, and will, go all-in against the entire Trump regime.

The post Robert Mueller goes all-in appeared first on Palmer Report.

Michael Flynn flew. Donald Trump and Mike Pence knew.

There was a movie called Turk 182 about a guy who was trying to expose political corruption. His catch phrase in the film was “Zimmerman Flew, Tyler Knew,” a reminder that very rarely does a top underling indulge in sustained corruption without the top dog knowing about it. Now that Michael Flynn is negotiating a deal to spill his guts, we’re reminded that there’s no way Donald Trump and Mike Pence didn’t know what Flynn was doing with Russia and all Flynn has to do is to demonstrate as much.

During the transition period, Flynn’s several phone calls to the Russian Ambassador in one day weren’t an aberration. The two men had to have been communicating regularly throughout the campaign. Stop and ask yourself why the top foreign policy adviser for the Trump campaign would have been in regular contact with the Russian Ambassador throughout the election. Is this the kind of thing that a top adviser decides to do in his own right, and then decides to keep it hidden from the people he’s working directly under?

At the least, Donald Trump and Mike Pence were aware of what Michael Flynn was doing with Russia, because it would have been too obvious not to have been spotted eventually. At the most, they outright instructed him to remain in contact with Russia. Either way, they knew. In order to honor his plea deal, Flynn will have to spill out every last detail. Somewhere in there, he’ll be able to provide evidence and corroboration that Trump and Pence knew what he was up to.

That alone will be enough to unravel the future political prospects of Donald Trump and Mike Pence both. They knew Michael Flynn was coordinating with the Russian government in his role as a top Trump campaign foreign policy adviser. They ordered it, or encouraged it, or looked the other way. Then they lied about it, repeatedly. They worked to cover it up. That’s obstruction of justice, and maybe a lot more. Flynn flew. Trump and Pence knew. Turk 182.

The post Michael Flynn flew. Donald Trump and Mike Pence knew. appeared first on Palmer Report.

James Comey tweets about freedom of the press right after Trump slams CNN – Business Insider


Business Insider
James Comey tweets about freedom of the press right after Trump slams CNN
Business Insider
Former FBI director James Comey appeared to weigh in after President Donald Trump slammed CNN on Twitter. Comeytweeted tweeted out a quote about freedom of the press shortly after Trump attacked the news network. This is not the first time Comey seems to have tacitly  by the former president and founding father, Thomas Jefferson, shortly after President Donald Trump railed against CNN on Twitter. “.@FoxNews is MUCH more important in  …
Comey shares ‘freedom of press’ post after Trump slams CNNOutlook India
Comey runs to defend CNN after Trump slam but someone should really teach him how to trollBizPac Review
Donald Trump Slams CNN International, Touts Loony Conspiracy WebsiteDeadline
Twitter
all 55 quote about freedom of the press after Trump hits CNNThe Hill (blog)
What Trump Revealed to Russian Officials After Firing ComeyPatheos (blog)

all 5 news articles »

After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even bigger Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land

After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even bigger Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land

After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump gives away that an even Trump-Russia bombshell is about to land

Good news: it’s about to get even worse for Donald Trump

Russian President Putin signs ‘foreign agent’ media law – BBC News


BBC News
Russian President Putin signs ‘foreign agent’ media law
BBC News
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law that allows the government to list any foreign media operating in the country as a foreign agent. The bill, in retaliation for Kremlin-backed broadcaster RT being told to register as a foreign agent in
Russian president Putin signs foreign agent media law to match US actionUSA TODAY 
Putin retaliates for US action against Russian-funded mediawtvr.com
Russia’s Putin signs ‘foreign agents’ media lawReuters
The Express TribuneSplinter (blog)The Drum
all 84 
Putin’s foes deplore US fixation on poll meddlingThe Hindu
In retaliatory move, Putin signs media ‘foreign agents’ lawCNN
ReutersExpress.co.ukNew York Magazine
all 72
 news articles »
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s
Daily Beast
This smacks of authoritarianism, especially for those who have actually lived under conditions where free expression is limited or even actively suppressed. Has there been a more concerted effort to make America’s internet look like China’s? (Or Egypt’s?

and more »

Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath
Daily Beast
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, commonly referred to as the DSMthe guidebook of the American Psychiatric Associationclassifies sociopathy as an antisocial disorder, or having a general disregard for and violation of 

and more »

“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Jared Kushner is up to something tonight

Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative – HuffPost

Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative
HuffPost
The journey of regional and international bargaining over the Middle East has kicked off, with the emergence of the features of realistic understandings in Syria, far removed from the erstwhile delusions about victory, now Syria having been spared from 

and more »

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

On Saturday afternoon, Donald Trump used his Twitter account to take a curiously timed and oddly specific shot at not just CNN, but CNN International in particular. It stood out as bizarre because Trump is so sheltered from the mainstream media universe, and so ignorant of the world at large, it’s unlikely he even knows what “CNN International” is. Then came a near-simultaneous development which not only explains Trump’s tweet, but also reveals that Russian President Vladimir Putin was behind it.

Several news outlets reported on Saturday afternoon that Russia has passed legislation which cracks down on international media outlets trying to operate within its borders by forcing them to register as foreign agents (link). This is clearly an attempt at retaliation on Russia’s part for the recent United States crackdown on Russian state-run propaganda outlets like RT and Sputnik. This also serves to potentially put international reporters in grave danger while operating in Russia, given Putin’s penchant for simply murdering reporters he doesn’t like.

At nearly the same time this story broke, Donald Trump tweeted “Fox News is MUCH more important in the United States than CNN, but outside of the U.S., CNN International is still a major source of (Fake) news, and they represent our Nation to the WORLD very poorly. The outside world does not see the truth from them!” Now we know why. He and Putin are clearly plotting against CNN International’s ability to safely operate inside Russia’s borders, or in any territory where the Russian government has influence.

It’s still not entirely clear how Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin managed to coordinate this plot in advance. The two illegitimate leaders did speak privately by phone earlier this week, so they may have hashed it out at that time. But in any case, there’s no question that Trump just conspired with Putin to purposely jeopardize the international reporters working for a major American news outlet. If any CNN International reporter is murdered in Russia, then Trump is guilty of conspiracy to commit murder.

The post Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN appeared first on Palmer Report.

Fox News Is ‘Much More Important’ Than CNN, Trump Tweets

The dig follows a Justice Department lawsuit to block AT&T’s merger with Time Warner, which owns CNN.

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

Now that Michael Flynn has decided to cut a plea deal and testify against Donald Trump, in a move which will likely bring down the entire administration, how is Trump taking the news? In what sounds a lot like a psychological breakdown, apparently he’s not only convinced himself that the Flynn deal isn’t happening, he’s also going back and convincing him that things he’s admitted to in the past aren’t real either.

Donald Trump is now telling his advisers that the Access Hollywood tape, which caught him bragging in private that he likes to grab women by the genitals when he first meets them, isn’t authentic, according to a New York Times report (link). That’s remarkable, considering that after the take leaked during the campaign, Trump publicly admitted that it was really him on th tape, and apologized for it. We’ve seen Trump try to rewrite his own history before after it’s already out in the open, but never quite like this.

Trump appears to have become newly fixated on his earlier sexual assault admission thanks to the Roy Moore campaign. Several women have accused Moore of sexually molesting them while they were underage, prompting most Republican Party leaders to distance themselves from Moore as thoroughly as they could. Trump decided instead to endorse Moore, using the reasoning that Moore denies the allegations. The trouble: Trump already confessed to his own sexual assault allegations.

But this all seems to come down to Michael Flynn’s decision to sell out Donald Trump in order to keep his own son out of prison. Trump can’t handle the fact that the walls are now about to cave in on him, and that he’s probably headed to prison himself. In fact it’s sent him into such a delusional pit of self-denial that he’s now trying to randomly rewrite his past scandals in an attempt to compensate.

The post As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denialappeared first on Palmer Report.

Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Things are exploding between Donald, Ivanka and Jared

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

This is sad even by Donald Trump’s standards

Trump’s bluster not matched by changes in US policy – Charleston Post Courier

Trump’s bluster not matched by changes in US policy
Charleston Post Courier
That said, the immediate danger today is not that Trump may try to start a nuclear war; rather, it’s that his own words ring increasingly hollow. This is where it’s worth examining what Hyten said right before his very quotable … Trump refuses to 

and more »

Gerard Brooker: ‘The abiding danger of Trump’ – Danbury News Times


Danbury News Times
Gerard Brooker: ‘The abiding danger of Trump’
Danbury News Times
Indeed, as one of the 27 writes, His relationship with the truth is perverted. Of the many clinical diagnoses describing the status of Trump’s mental health, the one used most often in the book is malignant narcissist, that is, a self-centered 

AP News in Brief at 12:04 am EST – Washington Post

AP News in Brief at 12:04 am EST
Washington Post
When the ambulances arrived they shot at them, repelling them as they got back into their vehicles and fled. Friday’s … Trumpand congressional leaders plan a meeting Tuesday to discuss how to sidestep a shutdown and work though the legislative to-do 

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

Trump and Putin make coordinated move to put safety of CNN reporters at risk

Putin passes law branding international media as foreign agents after US action on Russia’s RT television – New York Daily News


RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
Putin passes law branding international media as foreign agents after US action on Russia’s RT television
New York Daily News
The move was seen as retaliation for a similar measure taken by the Justice Department against Russia’s state-funded RT television. The U.S. government took action after intelligence services identified that RT, formerly known as Russia Today, was spreading false information during the 2016 presidential election. Putin’s government has repeatedly denied meddling in the election and  …
Russian President Signs ‘Foreign Agents’ Media LegislationRadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
Putin Signs ‘Foreign Agents’ Media Law As Payback to USSplinter (blog)

all 73 66 news articles »


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10:04 AM 11/26/2017 – How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast

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How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast

Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath – Daily Beast
“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?
Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative – HuffPost
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN
Fox News Is ‘Much More Important’ Than CNN, Trump Tweets
As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial
Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump
As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial
Trump’s bluster not matched by changes in US policy – Charleston Post Courier
Gerard Brooker: ‘The abiding danger of Trump’ – Danbury News Times
AP News in Brief at 12:04 am EST – Washington Post
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN
Putin passes law branding international media as foreign agents after US action on Russia’s RT television – New York Daily News
Top firearms cops suspended in crime and misconduct probe – Scottish Daily Record
New signs Michael Flynn may be cutting deal with special counsel Robert Mueller – ABC News
Mike Flynn – Google News: New signs Michael Flynn may be cutting deal with special counsel Robert Mueller – ABC News
Yes, Robert Mueller is going to take them all down
Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you! – Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier
Trump’s assault on the administrative state will benefit America – Fox News
Narcissism prevents global solutions to our shared problems – Press Herald
US-Turkish political stew: Kurds, Flynn and even Bharara – Newsday
Alt-America: the time for talking about white terrorism is now – The Guardian
The Trump SoHo hotel will lose its ‘Trump,’ but in New York there are plenty more – Los Angeles Times
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – Washington Post

 

Saved Stories – None
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
How Trump Will Turn America’s Open Internet Into an Ugly Version of China’s
Daily Beast
This smacks of authoritarianism, especially for those who have actually lived under conditions where free expression is limited or even actively suppressed. Has there been a more concerted effort to make America’s internet look like China’s? (Or Egypt’s?

and more »

Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
Donald Trump and the Success of the Narcissistic Sociopath
Daily Beast
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, commonly referred to as the DSMthe guidebook of the American Psychiatric Associationclassifies sociopathy as an antisocial disorder, or having a general disregard for and violation of 

and more »

“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

“*Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Did Jared Kushner just tip off that hes about to resign?

Jared Kushner is up to something tonight

Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative – HuffPost

Putin’s Syrian Messages and Macron’s Lebanese Initiative
HuffPost
The journey of regional and international bargaining over the Middle East has kicked off, with the emergence of the features of realistic understandings in Syria, far removed from the erstwhile delusions about victory, now Syria having been spared from 

and more »

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

On Saturday afternoon, Donald Trump used his Twitter account to take a curiously timed and oddly specific shot at not just CNN, but CNN International in particular. It stood out as bizarre because Trump is so sheltered from the mainstream media universe, and so ignorant of the world at large, it’s unlikely he even knows what “CNN International” is. Then came a near-simultaneous development which not only explains Trump’s tweet, but also reveals that Russian President Vladimir Putin was behind it.

Several news outlets reported on Saturday afternoon that Russia has passed legislation which cracks down on international media outlets trying to operate within its borders by forcing them to register as foreign agents (link). This is clearly an attempt at retaliation on Russia’s part for the recent United States crackdown on Russian state-run propaganda outlets like RT and Sputnik. This also serves to potentially put international reporters in grave danger while operating in Russia, given Putin’s penchant for simply murdering reporters he doesn’t like.

At nearly the same time this story broke, Donald Trump tweeted “Fox News is MUCH more important in the United States than CNN, but outside of the U.S., CNN International is still a major source of (Fake) news, and they represent our Nation to the WORLD very poorly. The outside world does not see the truth from them!” Now we know why. He and Putin are clearly plotting against CNN International’s ability to safely operate inside Russia’s borders, or in any territory where the Russian government has influence.

It’s still not entirely clear how Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin managed to coordinate this plot in advance. The two illegitimate leaders did speak privately by phone earlier this week, so they may have hashed it out at that time. But in any case, there’s no question that Trump just conspired with Putin to purposely jeopardize the international reporters working for a major American news outlet. If any CNN International reporter is murdered in Russia, then Trump is guilty of conspiracy to commit murder.

The post Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN appeared first on Palmer Report.

Fox News Is ‘Much More Important’ Than CNN, Trump Tweets

The dig follows a Justice Department lawsuit to block AT&T’s merger with Time Warner, which owns CNN.

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

Now that Michael Flynn has decided to cut a plea deal and testify against Donald Trump, in a move which will likely bring down the entire administration, how is Trump taking the news? In what sounds a lot like a psychological breakdown, apparently he’s not only convinced himself that the Flynn deal isn’t happening, he’s also going back and convincing him that things he’s admitted to in the past aren’t real either.

Donald Trump is now telling his advisers that the Access Hollywood tape, which caught him bragging in private that he likes to grab women by the genitals when he first meets them, isn’t authentic, according to a New York Times report (link). That’s remarkable, considering that after the take leaked during the campaign, Trump publicly admitted that it was really him on th tape, and apologized for it. We’ve seen Trump try to rewrite his own history before after it’s already out in the open, but never quite like this.

Trump appears to have become newly fixated on his earlier sexual assault admission thanks to the Roy Moore campaign. Several women have accused Moore of sexually molesting them while they were underage, prompting most Republican Party leaders to distance themselves from Moore as thoroughly as they could. Trump decided instead to endorse Moore, using the reasoning that Moore denies the allegations. The trouble: Trump already confessed to his own sexual assault allegations.

But this all seems to come down to Michael Flynn’s decision to sell out Donald Trump in order to keep his own son out of prison. Trump can’t handle the fact that the walls are now about to cave in on him, and that he’s probably headed to prison himself. In fact it’s sent him into such a delusional pit of self-denial that he’s now trying to randomly rewrite his past scandals in an attempt to compensate.

The post As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denialappeared first on Palmer Report.

Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Donald Trump is pissed at Ivanka Trump

Things are exploding between Donald, Ivanka and Jared

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

As Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump sinks into a delusional pit of self-denial

This is sad even by Donald Trump’s standards

Trump’s bluster not matched by changes in US policy – Charleston Post Courier

Trump’s bluster not matched by changes in US policy
Charleston Post Courier
That said, the immediate danger today is not that Trump may try to start a nuclear war; rather, it’s that his own words ring increasingly hollow. This is where it’s worth examining what Hyten said right before his very quotable … Trump refuses to 

and more »

Gerard Brooker: ‘The abiding danger of Trump’ – Danbury News Times


Danbury News Times
Gerard Brooker: ‘The abiding danger of Trump’
Danbury News Times
Indeed, as one of the 27 writes, His relationship with the truth is perverted. Of the many clinical diagnoses describing the status of Trump’s mental health, the one used most often in the book is malignant narcissist, that is, a self-centered 

AP News in Brief at 12:04 am EST – Washington Post

AP News in Brief at 12:04 am EST
Washington Post
When the ambulances arrived they shot at them, repelling them as they got back into their vehicles and fled. Friday’s … Trumpand congressional leaders plan a meeting Tuesday to discuss how to sidestep a shutdown and work though the legislative to-do 

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are plotting together against CNN

Trump and Putin make coordinated move to put safety of CNN reporters at risk

Putin passes law branding international media as foreign agents after US action on Russia’s RT television – New York Daily News


RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
Putin passes law branding international media as foreign agents after US action on Russia’s RT television
New York Daily News
The move was seen as retaliation for a similar measure taken by the Justice Department against Russia’s state-funded RT television. The U.S. government took action after intelligence services identified that RT, formerly known as Russia Today, was spreading false information during the 2016 presidential election. Putin’s government has repeatedly denied meddling in the election and  …
Russian President Signs ‘Foreign Agents’ Media LegislationRadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
Putin Signs ‘Foreign Agents’ Media Law As Payback to USSplinter (blog)

all 73 66 news articles »

Top firearms cops suspended in crime and misconduct probe – Scottish Daily Record


Scottish Daily Record
Top firearms cops suspended in crime and misconduct probe
Scottish Daily Record
He was responsible for operational support, custody and criminal justice, which included firearms and counter terrorism. Both Kinnell and Glass reported to him on a daily basis. The new complaints are not linked to the separate PIRC investigations into …

and more »

New signs Michael Flynn may be cutting deal with special counsel Robert Mueller – ABC News


ABC News
New signs Michael Flynn may be cutting deal with special counsel Robert Mueller
ABC News
Back here at home in new signs former national security advisor Michael Flynn may be cutting a deal with special counsel Robert Lawler. ABC news confirming Wynn’s lawyers have severed talks with president Trump’s personal legal team over the rush …
Turkey’s Torrid Love Affair With Michael Flynn Politico POLITICO Magazine
Paul Waldman: Michael Flynn is key to the Russia scandal and he may have just flipped on TrumpHollandSentinel.com
Michael Flynn’s Legal Team Informs White House They Can No Longer Discuss Mueller InvestigationCBS New York
The HillYahoo NewsPocono Record
all 37 news articles »
Mike Flynn – Google News: New signs Michael Flynn may be cutting deal with special counsel Robert Mueller – ABC News


ABC News

 Mike Flynn – Google News

Yes, Robert Mueller is going to take them all down

It’s not that difficult to figure out, really. We learned all we needed to know when Special Counsel Robert Mueller revealed that he had forced low level Donald Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos into a plea deal after catching him lying to the FBI. It was the most clinical of crimes, yet Mueller didn’t hesitate to use it to his advantage. That clue alone is enough to tell us what comes next with regard to the bigger fish whose fate we care about.

Jeff Sessions lied under oath to the Senate about his own meetings with the Russian Ambassador and his knowledge about other Trump campaign meetings with the Russians. That’s a felony. Do you really think Robert Mueller won’t nail Sessions for it? Of course he will. Sessions committed a crime, so Mueller will indict him for it, if he hasn’t already. The same goes for Jared Kushner, who lied about his Russia meetings on his White House security clearance form. Another felony, another indictment.

Mueller clearly doesn’t care about whether the public, or history, judges him to have been overly harsh in his tactics. He threatened to ruin the life of a nobody like Papadopoulos, who was barely even a player in the scandal, just so he could flip and get to the next domino. He’ll do the same to everyone else involved. Half a dozen or more of Trump’s White House advisers helped him plot the firing of FBI Director James Comey, the cover up of Donald Trump Jr’s Russia meeting, or both. Mueller will hit every last one of them with the threat of conspiracy to obstruct justice charges, to force them to flip.

Of course Robert Mueller is only doing this because he knows in the end he’ll need as many cooperating witnesses against Donald Trump as possible. He has to convince the court of public opinion that Trump is overwhelmingly guilty. He’s already shown us he’s willing to be brutal, if ultimately fair, when it comes to getting there. So yeah, Mueller is going to take them all down. It’s just a matter of who cuts a deal, and who rots in prison, on Mueller’s way to taking down Trump.

The post Yes, Robert Mueller is going to take them all down appeared first on Palmer Report.

Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you! – Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier


Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier
Mr. President, have I got a bridge for you!
Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier 
John McCain said: There’s nothing ‘America first’ about taking the word of a KGB colonel over that of the Americanintelligence community. … Vladimir Putin does not have America’s interests at heart. To believe otherwise is not only naive but also
 
‘Dear Donald: If you really believe me, if you think us Russians didn’t try to tilt the election in your favor, then I have a bridge I’d like to sell you. … rejecting the consensus view of his own intelligence agencies while swallowing the
 

and more »

Trump’s assault on the administrative state will benefit America – Fox News


Fox News
Trump’s assault on the administrative state will benefit America
Fox News
President Trump has asked Congress to reduce and simplify our tax system in what would be the first major tax reform in 31 years. If successful, it would unshackle the American economy as much as will regulatory reform. While regulators, their rules

Narcissism prevents global solutions to our shared problems – Press Herald


Press Herald
Narcissism prevents global solutions to our shared problems
Press Herald
Long before Donald Trump took the presidential oath, his story surfaced in psychology texts and classrooms as an instructional example of narcissism. Powered by social media, an ideal venue for self-promoters, he won over many voters even as he …

and more »

US-Turkish political stew: Kurds, Flynn and even Bharara – Newsday


Newsday
US-Turkish political stew: Kurds, Flynn and even Bharara
Newsday
In fact, on the defense side of the case, the president finds two political allies Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor, and Michael Mukasey, the former attorney general. By most accounts their job has been to try to get the case resolved through 

and more »

Alt-America: the time for talking about white terrorism is now – The Guardian


The Guardian
Alt-America: the time for talking about white terrorism is now
The Guardian
During that time span, there were 201 total cases of domestic terrorism in the United States almost three times the rate of the preceding eight years. The large majority of these crimes were committed by rightwing extremists some 115 in all 

The Trump SoHo hotel will lose its ‘Trump,’ but in New York there are plenty more – Los Angeles Times


Los Angeles Times
The Trump SoHo hotel will lose its ‘Trump,’ but in New York there are plenty more
Los Angeles Times
The Trumps settled the civil lawsuit and the criminal investigation was ultimately dropped, but questions continued to hang over the hotel’s finances for years. These days in New York, the name Trump inevitably suggests politics. And some guests at the 
DoJ: Trump-SoHo Breakup ‘Undermines’ Ethics Group’s ComplaintTPM

all 37 36 news articles »

FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails – Washington Post


Washington Post
FBI didn’t tell US targets as Russian hackers hunted emails
Washington Post
EDITOR’S NOTE _ One in a series of stories on the findings of an Associated Press investigation of the Russian hackers who disrupted the U.S. presidential election in 2016. Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not 

and more »


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9:02 AM 11/25/2017 – Turkey’s Torrid Love Affair With Michael Flynn – Politico

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Saved Stories

Saved Stories – None

Turkey’s Torrid Love Affair With Michael Flynn – Politico

How one woman exposed Russia’s fake news campaign – Brisbane Times
Palmer Report: After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump panics under the pressure
Putin and American political process – Google News: David Ignatius: A beleaguered Tillerson is still at the table – STLtoday.com
organized crime and terrorism – Google News: KENNY: Here’s what the new RCMP boss must tackle – Toronto Sun
trump as danger to National Security – Google News: Flynn Cooperating With Prosecutors Could Be Dangerous for Trump – Bloomberg
former FBI agents power influence – Google News: Mueller might be the one who’s ‘draining the swamp’ – Washington Post
Jared Kushner, Not Michael Flynn, Could Be Russia Probe’s Next Big Target, Obama Ally Says – Newsweek
Russian Intelligence services – Google News: Exclusive: Manafort flight records show deeper Kremlin ties than previously known – Charlotte Observer
Palmer Report: Michael Flynns deal with Robert Mueller is about to destroy these seven key Trump-Russia players
michael flynn – Google News: Dem senator: ‘Michael Flynn is in deep trouble’ over multiple potential charges including perjury and tax violation – Raw Story
trump under federal investigation – Google News: Maine lawmakers denounce FCC plan to end net neutrality – The Hill
FBI politicization – Google News: Questions, debate and politics flare after Border Patrol agent fatally injured near Van Horn – El Paso Times
trump under federal investigation – Google News: Flynn could prove to be key asset in Mueller’s US campaign probe, sources say – Reuters
Elections 2016 Investigation videos – Google News: Michael Flynn Breaks Up With Trump’s Lawyers – Newsy
michael flynn – Google News: Egypt, Michael Flynn, Argentina: Your Evening Briefing – New York Times
Trump – Google News: Trump tells Turkish president US will stop arming Kurds in Syria – Washington Post
trump as danger to National Security – Google News: The Parasites Feeding on North Koreans – New York Times
Congressional inquiries on Russia unlikely to end soon – The Boston Globe
Palmer Report: Insider: look for Robert Mueller to pull off surprise arrests of two Donald Trump family members
US backtracks on decision to close Palestinian office in Washington – Washington Post
Flynn may be moving to cooperate with Mueller’s Russia probe – Concord Monitor
Palmer Report: Preet Bharara gets last laugh after Michael Flynn sells out Donald Trump
Palmer Report: How Robert Mueller blocked Donald Trump from pardoning Michael Flynn
trump russia ties – Google News: India balances ties with US; Russia: As Ivanka visits Hyderabad, top Indian ministers visit Russia – Economic Times

 

Saved Stories – None
Turkey’s Torrid Love Affair With Michael Flynn – Politico


Politico
Turkey’s Torrid Love Affair With Michael Flynn
Politico
According to the Wall Street Journal, Flynn also met in September and December last year with senior Turkish officialsincluding energy minister Berat Albayrak, Erdogan’s son-in-lawto discuss kidnapping Gülen and delivering him to Turkey, an 

How one woman exposed Russia’s fake news campaign – Brisbane Times


Brisbane Times
How one woman exposed Russia’s fake news campaign
Brisbane Times
The Kremlin has denied any role in the spread of fake news through US social media, or the use of online advertising to influence the 2016 US presidential election. Photo: AP. But the company acknowledged to Congress that more than 150 million users of 

Palmer Report: After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump panics under the pressure

There’s no possible way of overstating the importance of what just transpired: Michael Flynn has sold out Donald Trump. Flynn has chosen his loyalty to his son over his loyalty to Trump, and he’s now negotiating a deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller which will definitely destroy Trump’s presidency and likely destroy Trump’s life. Accordingly, Trump is panicking under the pressure.

No, Trump hasn’t thrown an unhinged Twitter tantrum aimed at Michael Flynn, the media, or a random black athlete. That’s coming soon enough. Instead, Trump is telegraphing that he’s panicking as he tries to figure out how to figure out how to minimize what’s just happened to him. First he immediately called up the leader of Turkey, who had Flynn on his payroll during the election. Then he advertised that phone call on Twitter, seemingly threatening Flynn’s safety in the process (link). From there, Trump’s moves became outright skittish.

After a deadly terrorist attack in Egypt, Trump posted a tweet expressing support for the victims. This marks the first instance in memory in which Trump has ever spoken up about a terror attack in which Muslims were the victims. Trump is so desperate for a distraction, he’s tweeting about the kind of terrorism that his own racist base doesn’t want to hear about. Then Trump tweeted that he was “quickly” playing a round of golf with Tiger Woods. He couldn’t resist bragging about it, but for the first time ever, he suddenly seems worried about how the public views his frequent golfing habit.

Some of these things may come off as subtle. But they’re notable because they’re a sign that Donald Trump is suddenly worried about even the little things. It’s the kind of behavior often seen from guilty people who realize they’ve finally been nailed for their biggest crimes. Suddenly they’re toeing the line and trying to look as straight-and-narrow as possible. But for Trump, it’s far too late.

The post After Michael Flynn sells him out, Donald Trump panics under the pressure appeared first on Palmer Report.

 Palmer Report

Putin and American political process – Google News: David Ignatius: A beleaguered Tillerson is still at the table – STLtoday.com


STLtoday.com
David Ignatius: A beleaguered Tillerson is still at the table
STLtoday.com
The message was that the administration is still pursuing the Sino-American diplomatic track, along with sanctions and military options. Trump and Tillerson also share the unpopular but … U.S. allies control big swaths of Syrian territory, and they 

and more »

 Putin and American political process – Google News

organized crime and terrorism – Google News: KENNY: Here’s what the new RCMP boss must tackle – Toronto Sun


Toronto Sun
KENNY: Here’s what the new RCMP boss must tackle
Toronto Sun
Following the terrorist attack on Parliament Hill in 2014, Commissioner Bob Paulson was forced to move 500 members fromorganized crime to counter terrorism. As a result, some 300 investigations into organized crime have been put on hold. The RCMP is a …

 organized crime and terrorism – Google News

trump as danger to National Security – Google News: Flynn Cooperating With Prosecutors Could Be Dangerous for Trump – Bloomberg


Bloomberg
Flynn Cooperating With Prosecutors Could Be Dangerous for Trump
Bloomberg
Attorneys for Flynn, who served as a senior Trump campaign adviser prior to his stint inside the administration, advised the White House of the decision shortly before Thanksgiving, the two people said. The move has been anticipated by the president’s …
‘Serious legal jeopardy for the president’: CNBC reporter says Flynn bombshell should make Trump sweatRaw Story

all 262 247 news articles »

 trump as danger to National Security – Google News

former FBI agents power influence – Google News: Mueller might be the one who’s ‘draining the swamp’ – Washington Post


Washington Post
Mueller might be the one who’s ‘draining the swamp’
Washington Post
The Mueller probe has already claimed its first K Street casualty: Tony Podesta. His lobbying firm, the Podesta Group, a Washington icon of power and political influence, notified its employees recently that the enterprise is shutting its doors. Since 
AP: Flynn breaks with Trump team on Mueller probeKOIN.com

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Jared Kushner, Not Michael Flynn, Could Be Russia Probe’s Next Big Target, Obama Ally Says – Newsweek


Newsweek
Jared Kushner, Not Michael Flynn, Could Be Russia Probe’s Next Big Target, Obama Ally Says
Newsweek
Norman Eisen tweeted Friday that Special Counsel Robert Mueller could be leaning on former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn in hopes that Flynn will cooperate and squeal on Jared Kushner, who’s married to Trump’s daughter. Kushner, who serves as  
Week 27: Did Flynn Flip and Did Trump Flip Out?Politico
Why Trump should be nervous, but not panicking, after Michael Flynn’s lawyers cut off communicationWashington Post
 
A Split From Trump Indicates That Flynn Is Moving to Cooperate With MuellerNew York Times

Mueller May Have Flipped Michael FlynnNew York Magazine 
Split With Trump Legal Team Indicates Flynn is Cooperating or Negotiating with Mueller

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Russian Intelligence services – Google News: Exclusive: Manafort flight records show deeper Kremlin ties than previously known – Charlotte Observer


Charlotte Observer
Exclusive: Manafort flight records show deeper Kremlin ties than previously known
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Political guru Paul Manafort took at least 18 trips to Moscow and was in frequent contact with Vladimir Putin’s allies for nearly a decade as a consultant in Russia and Ukraine for oligarchs and pro-Kremlin parties. Even after the February 2014 fall of 
Paul Manafort Flew 18 Times to Moscow and Frequently Reached Putin’s Allies, Records ShowNewsweek

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Palmer Report: Michael Flynns deal with Robert Mueller is about to destroy these seven key Trump-Russia players

Michael Flynn signaled last night that he’s negotiating a deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller in Donald Trump’s Russia scandal. So now what? Flynn is arguably the most crucial cooperating witness that Mueller could ever hope to land, because he’s in position to implicate numerous high ranking people in the Russia scandal. Here are the seven key players who are about to see their lives destroyed.

Donald Trump: Let’s start with the obvious. Michael Flynn was coordinating with the Russian Ambassador during the election and the transition period. He surely wasn’t acting alone. He can point the finger to who else knew and by incriminating those people, he’ll be putting them in position where they have to flip as well. Sooner or later, it’ll lead back to Trump being implicated in the Russia scandal. However, he’s far from the only one.

Jared Kushner: Flynn will have an easy time of implicating Kushner by revealing the true nature of Kushner’s own meetings with the Russian Ambassador and the head of a Russian bank.

Ivanka Trump: We don’t know why Ivanka Trump wandered into a transition period meeting and offered Michael Flynn any job in the administration he wanted. Was she being complicit, or just stupid? Even if Flynn can’t implicate her for any crimes, he’s about to take down Ivanka’s father and husband. Either way, Ivanka’s life will be destroyed.

Jeff Sessions: Flynn was so close to the Russian Ambassador, he almost certainly knows why the Ambassador kept meeting with Jeff Sessions during the election.

Donald Trump Jr: Flynn surely also knows the incriminating details of why Trump’s son kept coordinating with various Kremlin players throughout the election.

Paul Manafort: There’s nothing to suggest that Flynn can implicate Manafort. However, by cutting a deal, Flynn has made Manafort superfluous. That means that by the time Manafort caves and asks for a deal of his own, he’ll end up with a far less favorable deal than he could have gotten before Flynn flipped.

Mike Pence: For reasons known only to him, Pence made a point of trying to protect Flynn from his Russia crimes, to the point of obstructing justice. Pence will end up in a world of hurt.

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michael flynn – Google News: Dem senator: ‘Michael Flynn is in deep trouble’ over multiple potential charges including perjury and tax violation – Raw Story


Raw Story
Dem senator: ‘Michael Flynn is in deep trouble’ over multiple potential charges including perjury and tax violation
Raw Story
Acosta asked the senator. Based on what I’ve seen, Blumenthal responded, Michael Flynn is in deep trouble. He then listed off the potential charges the former general may soon be slapped with: perjury for lying to the FBI and Vice President Mike 

 michael flynn – Google News

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Maine lawmakers denounce FCC plan to end net neutrality
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Three members of Maine’s four-member congressional delegation said Friday that they oppose efforts led by FederalCommunications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai to undo net neutrality rules put in place under the Obama administration. Maine Sens.
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El Paso Times
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“The FBI was getting criticized for not releasing a whole lot of information and not ruling out the possibility of an accident, but then you don’t really rule out any options. You start going … “All of that is under an environment that’s very 

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Flynn could prove to be key asset in Mueller’s US campaign probe, sources say
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Flynn, a retired Army general, is a central figure in a federal investigation led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into whetherTrump aides colluded with alleged Russian efforts to boost his 2016 presidential campaign. It was not clear whether Kelner 
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Michael Flynn Breaks Up With Trump’s Lawyers
Newsy
Lawyers for former national security adviser Michael Flynn have reportedly stopped sharing information with President Donald Trump’s legal team about special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election. So
Michael Flynn may now be cooperating with Russia investigationCBS News

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New York Times
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(Want to get this briefing by email? Here’s the sign-up.) Good evening. Here’s the latest. Photo. Credit European Pressphoto Agency. 1. Egypt suffered one of the worst civilian massacres in its modern history. Islamist militants detonated bombs and 

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Palmer Report: Insider: look for Robert Mueller to pull off surprise arrests of two Donald Trump family members

Special Counsel Robert Mueller now has the cooperation of Michael Flynn, whose attorneys last night took definitive steps which reveal that Flynn is negotiating a plea deal. So what comes next? Flynn will have to give up everything he knows on everyone in order to get his deal to stick. One legal insider, who has worked with and against Mueller in the past, is offering some startling insight into what’s about to happen.

Last night Norm Eisen, a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, posted this tweet just as the Michael Flynn news was breaking: “I negotiated a cooperation deal for a target with Mueller’s office when he was US Atty and lemme tell ya, he’s not gonna give one to Flynn unless he implicates someone up the ladder. That means Kushner, Don Jr., or Big Daddy. They are all having indigestion tonight.” This morning he added more insight, based on when he was later working with Mueller.

Eisen added “One more thing I learned about Mueller. When I was at State & he was at FBI we worked together on an investigation, & he loves surprises. Kushner, Donnie Jr. and the rest of the Trump crime family better keep their overnight bags handy. Pack shoes with no laces guys.” In other words, the minute Robert Mueller gets the evidence and testimony he needs from Michael Flynn, he’s likely to make a point of pulling off surprise high-profile arrests in order to push things into motion.

It’s worth pointing out that when Robert Mueller concluded over the summer that he needed to quickly arrest Trump adviser George Papadopoulos, he didn’t even wait for an indictment or warrant. He simply had his people catch Papadopoulos by surprise at the airport, arresting him based on probable cause. Then he sorted out the legal details in court. So it’s entirely feasible that Mueller could arrest the likes of Jared Kushner or Donald Trump Jr without waiting for a grand jury first.

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US backtracks on decision to close Palestinian office in Washington – Washington Post


Arutz Sheva
US backtracks on decision to close Palestinian office in Washington
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The White House, in an effort led by Trump adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner, has been preparing a comprehensive peace plan to present to both sides in the coming months. We therefore are optimistic that at the end of this 90-day period, the
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Flynn may be moving to cooperate with Mueller’s Russia probe – Concord Monitor


Concord Monitor
Flynn may be moving to cooperate with Mueller’s Russia probe
Concord Monitor
… a Justice Department investigation over his foreign business dealings even before Mueller was appointed as special counsel in May to investigate potential coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia to influence the 2016 presidential election.
Michael Flynn’s Lawyers Reportedly End Communications With President Trump’s TeamTIME
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Palmer Report: Preet Bharara gets last laugh after Michael Flynn sells out Donald Trump

Donald Trump fired U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara in an attempt at sabotaging the investigation into his own various scandals. Since that time, former Trump adviser Michael Flynn has come to face major legal troubles due to his relationship with the government of Turkey. Not coincidentally, Turkey has announced a phony investigation into Bharara. Now that Flynn is selling out Trump and cutting a deal, Bharara is making a point of getting the last laugh.

After the news broke that Flynn was in the process of negotiating a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller on Thursday night, Preet Bharara tweeted “If you’re dead to rights, flipping on others and cooperating with the prosecution is the only sane and rational move. Also, prosecutors accept cooperation only if you can provide “substantial assistance.” Higher up in the food chain. Stay tuned.” When someone pointed out that the Turkey based plea deal had ruined Trump’s Thanksgiving, Bharara tweeted “Pass the stuffing.”

On Friday morning, Donald Trump tweeted that he had spoken with the leader of Turkey by phone. We believe it was a thinly veiled threat aimed at Michael Flynn (link), but at the least, it’s fairly obvious that the call had something to do with the Flynn situation. After the Associated Press tweeted “Trump, Turkish leader, in phone conversation, discuss Syrian crisis,” Bharara sarcastically added “Anything else…?”

At this point Donald Trump has fired Preet Bharara, Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, FBI Director James Comey, and several other individuals in the hope of derailing the investigation into his Russia scandal. That all ended up backfiring when Rod Rosenstein, the last man standing at the Department of Justice, appointed Robert Mueller to take over the investigation. Mueller has now arrested Trump’s campaign chairman and is negotiating a deal with Trump’s former National Security Adviser. Those who stood up to Trump are getting closer to getting the last laugh for good.

The post Preet Bharara gets last laugh after Michael Flynn sells out Donald Trump appeared first on Palmer Report.

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Palmer Report: How Robert Mueller blocked Donald Trump from pardoning Michael Flynn

Now that Michael Flynn has signaled he’s negotiating a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, two big questions have emerged. First, why didn’t Donald Trump preemptively pardon Flynn in order to prevent him from cutting a deal? Second, why didn’t Flynn hold out longer for a pardon, rather than negotiating a deal behind Trump’s back? Now a former federal prosecutor is explaining how Mueller effectively blocked Trump from being able to pardon Flynn.

Renato Mariotti, a former federal prosecutor who is now running for Attorney General of Illinois, has explained in detail how these kinds of situations work. He points out that “Flynn does not expect Trump to pardon him or his son, or he believes that him or his son could be convicted of unpardonable state offenses.” So why did Trump decide not to pardon Flynn, and why did Flynn conclude that the pardon wasn’t coming? Mariotti explains that “a pardon of Flynn could be used by Mueller as evidence of Trump’s ‘corrupt intent’ to prove obstruction, because it could indicate Trump’s strong desire to relieve Flynn of criminal liability. A Manafort pardon wouldn’t impact an obstruction case.” (link).

In other words, if Trump did pardon Flynn, it would serve to greatly increase the odds that Mueller can ultimately nail Trump for obstruction of justice. Thus Trump faced a no-win situation. By not pardoning Flynn, Trump is now vulnerable to whatever testimony and evidence Flynn serves up against him. But if he had pardoned Flynn, he would have been legally vulnerable in a different way.

All along, Robert Mueller has been setting up no-win situations for the various players in the Trump-Russia scandal. He pursued state level charges against Paul Manafort that Donald Trump couldn’t pardon. He targeted Michael Flynn’s son in order to get Flynn to decide to flip. And now he’s backed Trump into a corner where he ultimately couldn’t get away with pardoning Flynn either.

The post How Robert Mueller blocked Donald Trump from pardoning Michael Flynn appeared first on Palmer Report.

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trump russia ties – Google News: India balances ties with US; Russia: As Ivanka visits Hyderabad, top Indian ministers visit Russia – Economic Times


Economic Times
India balances ties with US; Russia: As Ivanka visits Hyderabad, top Indian ministers visit Russia
Economic Times
While Hyderabad is all set to host US presidential envoy Ivanka Trump for the GES that will be jointly inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the visitor on November 28, home minister Rajnath Singh and foreign minister Sushma Swaraj will be in …

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7:33 AM 11/25/2017 – Lori Andrade Flynn, the daughter of a large local Portuguese family…

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Former national security adviser Michael Flynn is seen at the White House in Washington in February. He was fired later that month for lying to the U.S. vice-president about a meeting he had with the Russian ambassador.

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn is seen at the White House in Washington in February. He was fired later that month for lying to the U.S. vice-president about a meeting he had with the Russian ambassador. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

Lori Andrade Flynn, the daughter of a large local Portuguese family, met Flynn in high school and her ties to the community run just as deep as her husband’s. 

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But through it all, his biggest supporter is still his wife, Lori Flynn. … He attended high school there and that’s where he met Lori Andrade.

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For the residents of Middletown, Rhode Island, General Michael Flynn, the former National Security Advisor is still their hometown hero, politics aside. USA TODAY

Michael Flynn, then National Security Adviser to President Trump, attends a press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in the East Room of the White House on Feb 10, 2017.(Photo: Jim Lo Scalzo, European Pressphoto Agency)

MIDDLETOWN, R.I. — They show up unannounced, with cash and checks to drop off at William Flynn’s accounting firm on busy Aquidneck Avenue. “I was shocked and a little embarrassed,” he said. “Some don’t even know my brother, but they…wanted to do something for the family.”

And at a local wedding celebration earlier this month, a guest sought out Jack Flynn for a private moment. “I don’t have a lot of money,” the wedding guest told him. “But I want you to know that I wrote a check for $100 to help your brother.”

Michael Flynn is one of the most vulnerable figures in special counsel Robert Mueller’s widening inquiry into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. That investigation took a dramatic step forward this week, when former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and aide Rick Gates were charged with money laundering and conspiracy for activities that took place before they joined the campaign.

Another Trump campaign aide, George Papadopolous, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his Russian contacts – Mueller’s first public allegation that an aide to President Trump’s campaign sought to work with Russian officials to gather “dirt” on the Democratic nominee.

Unlike Manafort – whom prosecutors allege spent more than $1 million from offshore accounts on clothes alone – and many other Trump associates caught in the investigation’s grip, Flynn and his family are not wealthy. As he struggles with legal costs verging on seven figures, residents of the small community Flynn calls home are rallying to his side, even though this New England town hardly qualifies as Trump Country – it’s a deep blue stronghold where even some of his own family have long identified as Democrats.

Mike Flynn’s childhood home in Middletown, RI. (Photo: Robert Deutsch, USA TODAY)

The Flynns never occupied any of the ostentatious Newport mansions that overlook the most privileged coastline in Rhode Island. But the sprawling family, which has produced two Army generals, is akin to royalty in nearby Middletown – a working class beach town where by now, most everybody knows the daunting legal peril facing its most decorated son.

After all, they watched Mike Flynn, the sixth of nine children, rise from high school football champion to venerated military officer and Trump’s national security adviser.

They also watched his highly public and dramatic fall. Since he resigned in February for misleading Vice President Pence about his contacts with Russian officials after the election, two federal grand juries are still examining Flynn’s activities – both as Trump’s national security adviser and in a brief lobbying career before that. Flynn has made no secret of his desire for a deal to testify in exchange for immunity from possible prosecution. And earlier this year he asserted his Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination when he refused to turn over documents sought by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Seven months after his unceremonious departure from the White House, trouble seemingly shadows virtually every corner of Flynn’s life – except here. At the urging of his family and oldest friends, the former national security adviser and his family have sought extended refuge in what feels like a galaxy away from Washington – where Flynn’s head-long descent into the political and legal unknown prompts flashes of anger, even contempt.

Jack Flynn, the fifth child in the family, described his brother’s ordeal as “a political assassination — a bunch of bulls—t.”

“I think that everybody is worried about what’s happening in Washington, D.C., but this is home,” added William Flynn, the eldest brother. “We grew up here, we know a lot of people and they know the family– like any other family– has problems. Most of them just happen to feel that Michael is a solid citizen.” In the 16,000-person community that lies between iconic Newport and Portsmouth, the former head of military intelligence who earned four Bronze Stars and was twice recognized with the Legion of Merit remains remarkably unsullied.

It is not surprising that family and friends have rallied to the general’s side. What is most striking is how the support here, a longtime Democratic stronghold where a Kennedy represented part of the state in Congress for 16 years, has transcended the nation’s deep political divide. Flynn’s own mother, Helen, was a well-known state Democratic activist.

“It’s not about being a Democrat, Republican or Independent,” said Middletown Council President Robert Sylvia, also a Democrat. “It’s about Michael Flynn.”

‘Out of the spotlight’

In this August 1972 photo provided by the Newport Daily News, Michael Flynn, 13, of Middletown, R.I., right, shakes hands with Middletown Councilman Francis LaPointe, left, as he is presented with a commendation and town title, in Middletown. Flynn was honored for pulling one small girl from the path of rolling car, and directing a friend to save another girl.  (Photo: The Newport Daily News, AP)

As soon as he learned of Flynn’s firing, Tom Heaney dashed off a letter to his old friend that contained a simple message: “Come on home.”

Heaney’s friendship with Flynn goes back nearly 50 years, when both were Middletown Little Leaguers and later, high school football teammates who captured the 1976 Rhode Island state championship.

“I thought it would be a good idea to spend time together, prop them up and let them know we are here for them,” said Heaney, a retired Army colonel. “There is a pretty strong nucleus of friends who go back years. And a lot of us are still here. We’re trying the best we can to keep Mike and Lori out of the spotlight.” (Lori Andrade Flynn, the daughter of a large local Portuguese family, met Flynn in high school and her ties to the community run just as deep as her husband’s.)

As the investigation crests in Washington, the criticism offered by cable television analysts or lobbed anonymously over the Internet is biting. “To hear people suggest that he is a traitor or should be shot, and to think that’s not stressful—you’re talking about somebody with more than 30 years of military service,” Jack Flynn said. “That means something.”

At home, Michael Flynn can lean on his support network. His parents, since taking up residence in the low-slung cottage on Tuckerman Avenue more than a half-century ago, have been a mainstay of the town. Helen and Charlie Flynn, a retired Army master sergeant, squeezed their nine children into the three-bedroom, one-bath home just steps from the surf.

There was so little room in the house, Jack Flynn said the kids spent most of the time outdoors. The family’s close proximity to the ocean turned 57 Tuckerman into a kind of community clubhouse, where friends stacked surfboards outside and wet-suits were slung on the fence-line to dry in the ocean breeze.

In recent months, Michael and Lori Flynn have returned to their local haunts. You can find them with Flynn’s brothers and their friends playing rounds of golf at nearby Montaup Country Club or taking in an occasional dinner at 22 Bowen’s, a steakhouse on the wharf in Newport.

‘It’s a black hole right now’

Tom Heaney, left, and Robert ‘Rocky’ Kempenaar, two of Mik Flynn’s friends in Rhode Island, have two major worries — that the entire clan will go broke paying the former National Security advisor’s legal bills and that the Russia scandal will overshadow his storied military career. (Photo: Robert Deutsch, USA TODAY)

But it’s not exactly a vacation.

Heaney and Robert “Rocky” Kempenaar, a local real estate executive who played football with Flynn say the weight of the investigations has exacted an enormous toll on their friend.

Flynn’s prior consulting work, which also is being examined by investigators, has been virtually shuttered.With multiple investigations shadowing him, there is little demand for him on the speakers’ circuit where in 2015 he earned $33,000 for a now-controversial speech in Moscow. About a year after leaving the military, the retired general spoke to the Kremlin-backed television network Russia Today – and a photo of him at a related formal dinner seated next to Russian President Vladimir Putin sparked tremendous controversy as the probe into possible collusion between Trump associates and Russia intensifies.

Now, with his legal fees mounting, Flynn has hired a team of attorneys led by Robert Kelner, a partner at the prominent firm of Covington & Burling, to respond to a flurry of requests for documents and other materials from investigators. Every inquiry, including from the media, pushes the costs ever higher.

Flynn’s family, acknowledging the “tremendous financial burden,” last month set up a legal defense fund to alleviate the costs. “The enormous expense of attorneys’ fees and other related expenses far exceed their ability to pay,” brother, Joe Flynn, and sister, Barbara Redgate, said in a statement creating the fund.

Although the solicitation asked for contributions from “supporters, veterans and all people of goodwill,” the fund says it is not accepting donations from foreign nationals, the Trump Campaign or the president’s family business, the Trump Organization.

Flynn’s financial resources pale in comparison to other subjects of the investigation, including Trump himself. Trump has been tapping his campaign fund and the Republican National Committee to pay for his growing legal obligations. Earlier this month, the campaign reported that it spent more than $1 million on Trump and his son’s legal fees during the previous three months. (Nearly $238,000 went to the firm defending Donald Trump Jr.)

More: Trump campaign spends more than $1 million on legal fees in last quarter

For a family that prizes independence and self-sufficiency, the decision to seek the help of others was “huge,” William Flynn said.

Michael Flynn has a military pension, which pays about $160,000 per year. But the family maintains that the legal costs are increasingly stripping away the family’s resources.

“You got all of these things going against you,” William Flynn said. “And the government has unlimited resources. You’ve got a special prosecutor (Mueller), the House Intelligence Committee, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Justice Department, the FBI.

“It’s a black hole right now,” he said. “My biggest concern is that this never ends.”

Meanwhile, in Washington

Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn speaks about American exceptionalism during the 2016 Republican National Convention. (Photo: Robert Hanashiro, USA TODAY)

Some 400 miles away, the retired general features prominently in some of the most troubling revelations so far involving the Trump administration and Russia.

Former acting Attorney General Sally Yates has recounted in extraordinary detail how she rushed to the White House in January to alert officials that Flynn could be vulnerable to blackmail by the Russians – and even face possible criminal charges – after misleading Pence about his contacts with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador.

Pence publicly announced that Flynn assured him the subject of sanctions the Obama administration imposed on Russia were not raised in his conversations with Kislyak after the election. But those conversations had been secretly monitored by federal authorities – as are most communications involving foreign diplomats. Authorities knew that was not the case. “Compromise was the No. 1 concern,” Yates told a Senate panel in May. Russian officials, aware that Flynn had misled the White House, could have threatened to expose the nature of the communications.

More: Sally Yates warned White House that Michael Flynn was vulnerable to Russian blackmail

More: Pentagon opens probe of Michael Flynn, fired national security adviser

More: James Comey testimony: Trump pressed me to shut down Michael Flynn investigation

What’s more, authorities viewed Flynn’s contacts with Russian diplomats as improper while the Obama administration was still in office – and a possible sign the Trump administration may have been trying to roll back sanctions imposed for Russia’s campaign of cyberattacks and fake news to influence the election.

The day after his Feb. 13 resignation, Flynn emerged as a central figure in yet another episode in the White House-Russia scandal. Former FBI Director James Comey has testified that Trump urged him at a private dinner to drop the investigation into Flynn’s contacts with Kislyak. Trump has denied making such a request.

In this Jan. 28, 2017, file photo, President Donald Trump accompanied by, from second from left, Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Vice President Mike Pence, White House press secretary Sean Spicer and National Security Adviser Michael Flynn speaks on the phone with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington. Flynn resigned as President Donald Trump’s national security adviser Monday, Feb. 13, 2017. (Photo: Andrew Harnik, AP)

Flynn’s private business dealings also have drawn investigators’ interest, including $530,000 in earnings from a Dutch firm with ties to the Turkish government, and payment for his 2015 Moscow speech.

Flynn had not registered as a foreign agent – a legal requirement – when he accepted money from the Dutch company and only disclosed the payments after registering retroactively amid news reports of the failing. Flynn’s attorney, has maintained that his client had “fully” informed the Defense Department of his trip to Russia. He registered with the Justice Department after he was ousted from the Trump administration.

Flynn, through his attorney, declined to comment for this article.

Even the activities of Flynn’s son, Michael Flynn Jr., who served as an aide to his father in the family’s consulting business have raised questions. Last year, he was dismissed from President Trump’s transition team for his promotion of a baseless conspiracy theory that a popular Washington, D.C., pizza parlor had become a front for a sex trafficking ring linked to the Clintons.

Yet Flynn’s brothers quickly dismiss the idea that Flynn had thrown his allegiance to an adversary or sought to shield business dealings with foreign governments. “The idea that he would do something underhanded drives me crazy,” William Flynn said. The scope of his brother’s business dealings, Jack Flynn says, represented “measly chump change” and could not have benefited an adversary like Russia.

At the same time, they are clear-eyed about their brother’s predicament. “The best case: this all goes away and Michael comes out unscathed,” William Flynn said. “The worst case: he gets convicted of something like perjury.” While the eldest Flynn is careful to say that he is not aware of anything that would warrant such a charge, he notes that bad recall of dates and times can turn into something much worse. “Sometimes, we’re just sloppy,” he said.

‘An island mentality’

In this photo, date unknown, provided by Joe Flynn, Michael Flynn, left, sits with his mother Helen Flynn, right, near a football field, in Middletown, R.I. (Photo: Charlie Flynn, AP)

Kempenaar, Flynn’s old friend, is not a Trump supporter. In fact, he said, Flynn’s support for then-candidate Trump took some locals by surprise. Flynn was a fiery surrogate for Trump on the campaign trail, famously encouraging the audience at the Republican National Convention to chant “Lock her up!” – referencing Democratic challenger Hillary Clinton.

Yet none of this appeared to phase his friends back home. “I’ll put it this way,” Kempenaar said, “I could sleep at night knowing that Mike was there (at the White House). “I knew Mike had our best interests at heart.”

Jon Zins, managing editor of the Newport Daily News which has chronicled the family’s adventures over the years, believes that Flynn’s generational roots have “superseded” any real political backlash in Democratic area.  “There is an island mentality to it, too,” Zins said. “There is a real sense of pride in being from here.”

But that pride is not blind, even here. Those closest to Flynn are concerned about how all of this ends. “I don’t think Mike has to come out squeaky clean,” William Flynn said. “I just want him to come out of it okay.”

Mueller leaves after briefing members of the Senate Judiciary Committee on the investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election on Capitol Hill on June 21, 2017.  Michael Reynolds, European Pressphoto Agency

Mueller departs after a closed-door meeting with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 21, 2017.  J. Scott Applewhite, AP

Mueller arrives for a court hearing at the Phillip Burton Federal Building in San Francisco on April 21, 2016. He had been overseeing settlement talks with Volkswagen, the U.S. government and private lawyers for the automaker to buy back some of the nearly 600,000 diesel cars that cheat on emissions tests.  Jeff Chiu, AP

James Comey talks with Mueller before he was officially sworn in as FBI director on Sept. 4, 2013.  Susan Walsh, AP

Mueller jokes with CIA Director John Brennan during his farewell ceremony at the Department of Justice on Aug. 1, 2013, in Washington.  Evan Vucci, AP

President Barack Obama, followed by Mueller, right, and his choice for Mueller’s successor, Comey, left, walks toward the podium in the Rose Garden on June 21, 2013.  Pablo Martinez Monsivais, AP

Mueller testifies during a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 19, 2013, where he confirmed that the FBI uses drones for domestic surveillance.  Alex Wong, Getty Images

Mueller is sworn in on Capitol Hill on June 13, 2013, prior to testifying before the House Judiciary Committee.  J. Scott Applewhite, AP

Mueller and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper listen to statements at a Senate Intelligence Committee open hearing on worldwide threats on Jan. 31, 2012.  H. Darr Beiser, USA TODAY

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Mueller and National Counterterrorism Center Director Matthew Olsen testify on Capitol Hill on Sept. 13, 2011, before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on the terror threat to the U.S.  Evan Vucci, AP

Clapper speaks with Mueller during the launch of the strategy to combat transnational organized crime at the White House on July 25, 2011.  Nicholas Kamm, AFP/Getty Images

Mueller speaks at a conference on domestic terrorism on Oct. 6, 2010.  Jacquelyn Martin, AP

Obama speaks with Mueller during a meeting at FBI headquarters in Washington on April 28, 2009.  Saul Loeb, AFP/Getty Images

Mueller is welcomed on Capitol Hill on March 25, 2009, by Sen. Arlen Specter, ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, prior to testifying before the committee’s oversight hearing regarding the FBI.  J. Scott Applewhite, AP

Mueller and Sen. Patrick Leahy chat ahead of Mueller’s testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee on Sept. 17, 2008, on Capitol Hill.  Mandel Ngan, AFP/Getty Images

Mueller testifies on Capitol Hill on Feb. 5, 2008, before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on world threats.  Kevin Wolf, AP

Mueller prepares to testify on Capitol Hill on March 27, 2007, before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the FBI.  Susan Walsh, AP

Mueller answers questions from the media in Charlotte, N.C., on April 24, 2006.  Chuck Burton, AP

CIA Director Porter Goss, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Mueller testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on April 27, 2005.  Tim Dillon, USA TODAY

Mueller and Attorney General John Ashcroft exit a press briefing at the Department of Justice on Oct. 29, 2001.  Stephen Jaffe, AFP

Mueller is sworn in at the start of his testimony during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill on July 30, 2001.  Dennis Cook, AP

President George W. Bush names Mueller the new director of the FBI at a Rose Garden ceremony on July 5, 2001.  Mike Theiler, AFP

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5 Fast Facts You Need to Know
 

mikenova shared this story from Heavy.com.

FacebookMichael Flynn and his wife, Lori.

According to various media reports, Michael Flynn, who served and resigned as President Donald Trump‘s National Security Advisor after 24 days, is facing federal charges. NBC News reported November 1 that federal investigators have enough evidence to bring charges on Flynn and his son, Michael Flynn Jr. The report hasn’t been verified by officials, but they would come as part of a special investigation by Robert Mueller regarding possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump campaign.

Flynn is the sixth of nine children in a military family and has been married to Lori Andrade for over 30 years.

Here’s what you need to know about the couple:


1. They Met in High School & Have Been Married for Over 30 Years

FacebookMichael and Lori Flynn

Flynn and Andrade met when they both attended Middletown High School in Rhode Island. A story in the Providence Journal says that they started seeing each other as sophomores and were officially dating by their senior year. The article said that Lori was “a pretty girl who played intramural and powder puff sports” and Flynn was a football player.

The couple got married and, according to a feature story on the University of Rhode Island website, have been together for over 30 years.


2. They Have 2 Sons Together

Michael and Lori Flynn at an event. Michael Flynn is the author of a book on “radical Islam.” He argues the government has downplayed the nature of the threat to the American people. (Facebook/Lori Flynn)

The Flynns have two grown sons together: Michael Flynn Jr. and Matt Flynn. Michael Flynn Jr. has also been under scrutiny in the Mueller investigation, and served as the chief of staff of the Flynn Intel Group, a company he ran with his father. He’s been very active on Twitter and commented on the reports of a possible indictment November 5.

Michael told the University of Rhode Island’s alumni newsletter that Lori has been a huge influence on many through the years.

“Lori has been a steady presence in the lives of thousands of soldiers and their families during my numerous deployments and has played the role of not only mom, but dad, coach, teacher, and at times, taxi driver for our two sons, Michael and Matt, as well as for hundreds of other children,” he told the publication. “She’s always willing to volunteer her time for others.”


3. Their Ties to Rhode Island Run Deep

Michael and Lori Flynn.

A recent story in the USA Todaysays that Flynn and Andrade are well known in their Rhode Island community, and a friend of the couple, retired Army Col. Tom Heaney, said they are active in the community and frequently are out and about.

“There is a pretty strong nucleus of friends who go back years,” Heaney told the newspaper. “And a lot of us are still here. We’re trying the best we can to keep Mike and Lori out of the spotlight.”

Andrade grew up in Middletown, Rhode Island and is the daughter of a large Portuguese family who are from Aquidneck Island.


4. Flynn’s Sister Said She Deserves Credit for Being a Strong Military Wife

The Flynns at a sporting event. Michael Flynn has Tweeted his support for the New England Patriots. He also likes the Boston Red Sox. (Facebook/Lori Flynn)

Lori has always been there during Flynn’s decorated military service. Flynn’s sister told The Newport Daily News that Lori deserves a great deal of praise for her patience and willpower.

“I give her a lot of credit because he has been at work for so many years,” Clare Flynn Eckert said. “He is one of the strongest military wives, with Michael all the way.”


5. The Flynns Have Tried to Keep a Low Profile Since His Resignation

Michael and Lori Flynn

Flynn announced his resignation from his position February 13 as controversy continued to mount. Reports surfaced about his communications with the Russian ambassador, and he stepped down just 24 days after he was hired.

In the months that followed, the Flynns returned to their hometown to get out of the spotlight, USA Today reported.

“In recent months, Michael and Lori Flynn have returned to their local haunts,” the newspaper article said. “You can find them with Flynn’s brothers and their friends playing rounds of golf at nearby Montaup Country Club or taking in an occasional dinner at 22 Bowen’s, a steakhouse on the wharf in Newport.”

The Providence Journal attempted to speak to Flynn following his resignation, and Lori answered the door at their Middletown house. She refused to comment.

“Not interested, thank you very much,” she said before shutting the door.


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5:43 AM 11/25/2017 – M.N.: Is there any connection between this Trump – Erdogan phone call, the end of the military assistance to Kurds, Russian-Turkish-Iranian policies in the region (see recent activities), and the current state of the Mueller’s Investigation, specifically around Flynn? White House, publish the entire transcript of this phone call! I could not find any reference to this phone call on the White House site. 

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С Президентом Ирана Хасаном Рухани (слева) и Президентом Турции Реджепом Тайипом Эрдоганом. Фото ТАСС

С Президентом Ирана Хасаном Рухани (слева) и Президентом Турции Реджепом Тайипом Эрдоганом. Фото ТАСС

M.N.: Is there any connection between this Trump – Erdogan phone call, the end of the military assistance to Kurds, Russian-Turkish-Iranian policies in the region (see recent activities), and the current state of the Mueller’s Investigation, specifically around Flynn? 

Did Trump promise any favorable terms to Erdogan at Kurds’ expense to get Turkey’s favorable terms in handling, managing, and releasing or not releasing the information on Flynn? 

Does Trump use the Foreign Policy positions and strategies as the bargaining chips, to obtain the personal benefits with regard to investigations of his and Flynn’s connections with Russia and Turkey? 

White House, publish the entire transcript of this phone call! 

I could not find any reference to this phone call on the White House site

_______________________________

The move could help ease strained tensions between the U.S. and Turkey, two NATO allies that have been sharply at odds about how best to wage the fight against IS. Turkey considers the Kurdish Syrian fighters, known by the initials YPG, to be terrorists because of their affiliation to outlawed Kurdish rebels that have waged a three decade-long insurgency in Turkey. Yet the U.S. chose to partner with the YPG in Syria anyway, arguing that the battle-hardened Kurds were the most effective fighting force available.

Cavusoglu, who said he was in the room with Erdogan during Trump’s call, quoted the U.S. president as saying he had given instructions to U.S. generals and to national security adviser H.R. McMaster that “no weapons would be issued.”

“Of course, we were very happy with this,” Cavusoglu said.

Yet for the Kurds, it was the latest demoralizing blow to their hopes for greater recognition in the region. Last month, the Kurds in neighboring Iraq saw their recent territorial gains erased by the Iraqi military, which seized the oil-rich city of Kirkuk and other disputed areas from the Kurdish regional government in retaliation for a Kurdish independence referendum that the U.S. ardently opposed.

Trump’s decision appeared to catch both the Pentagon and the U.S. State Department off guard. Officials at both agencies, who would normally be informed of changes in U.S. policy toward arming the Syrian Kurds, said they were unaware of any changes. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity.

It was unclear whether the Trump administration notified the Kurds of the move before telling the Turks. Nor was it how much significance the change would have on the ground, considering the fight against IS is almost over.

The United States has been arming the Kurds in their fight against IS through an umbrella group known as the Syrian Democratic Forces, or SDF, which is comprised of Kurdish as well as Arab fighters.

But the retreat of IS, which has lost nearly all its territory in Syria, has altered the dynamics in the region and a U.S. defense official said he was unaware of any additional arms scheduled to be transferred to the Kurds, even before the Turkish announcement.

Last week, Col. Ryan Dillon, the chief spokesman for the U.S. coalition that is fighting IS in Iraq and Syria, said there has yet to be any reduction in the number of U.S. advisers working with the SDF. His comments appeared to suggest the possibility that changes in the level and type of U.S. military support for the Syrian Kurds could be coming.

As the fight against IS has waned in recent months, the U.S. has pledged to carefully monitor the weapons it provides the Kurds, notably ensuring that they don’t wind up in the hands of Kurdish insurgents in Turkey known as the PKK.

Both Turkey and the U.S. consider the PKK a terrorist group. But the United States has tried to draw a distinction between the PKK and the Syrian Kurds across the border, while Turkey insists they’re essentially the same.

_________________________

Trump and Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan “underscored the need to end the humanitarian crisis, allow displaced Syrians to return home, and ensure the stability of a unified Syria free of malign intervention and terrorist safe havens,” the White House said in a statement.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters in Ankara that Trump said that in the call the U.S. would no longer supply arms to Syrian Kurdish fighters that Erdogan regards as terrorists.

The White House statement did not specifically refer to the Kurds, saying only that Trump informed Erdogan “of pending adjustments to the military support provided to our partners on the ground in Syria, now that the battle of Raqqa is complete” and Islamic State militants are on the run.

_____________________________

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Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Did Donald Trump just publicly threaten Michael Flynns safety?
 

mikenova shared this story from Palmer Report.

Last night multiple major news outlets confirmed that Michael Flynn is making moves to negotiate a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, in what amounts to the worst case scenario for Donald Trump. Flynn will give up many of Trump’s Russia secrets, taking Trump down in the process. Rather than ranting about it this morning, Trump made a statement which if you put it within the proper context sure sounds like a threat against the safety of Flynn and his son.

Flynn is accused of having illegally been on the payroll of the government of Turkey, and of having participated in a conspiracy to kidnap a Turkish cleric in Pennsylvania. Here’s what Trump tweeted this morning, just hours after Flynn’s deal was revealed: “Will be speaking to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey this morning about bringing peace to the mess that I inherited in the Middle East. I will get it all done, but what a mistake, in lives and dollars (6 trillion), to be there in the first place!” There’s more to this than initially appears.

At first it sounded like Trump was merely calling up Erdogan in a panicked attempt at figuring out how to respond to Flynn’s decision to cut a deal. But the more I think about it, this sounds like something more. If this were just about Trump talking strategy with Erdogan, Trump and his handlers would have tried to keep the phone call secret, or at least as low-key as possible. Instead Trump promptly advertised on Twitter that the phone call had taken place, even though it meant making the entire thing look even more suspicious in the eyes of the public. That’s because the tweet about the Turkey phone call wasn’t intended for the general public. It was aimed at an audience of one.

This phone call, and in particular the tweet announcing it, were intended to send a message to Michael Flynn. But legally speaking, at this point there is nothing that Trump or Turkey can do to Flynn. It sure sounds like Trump is hinting to Flynn that Turkey’s lawless regime might put his safety at risk if he goes through with the deal. Keep in mind that Flynn is flipping to protect his son from criminal prosecution. Is this a threat against Flynn’s son’s safety? If that sounds like it might be a stretch, keep in mind that just a week ago, Trump bizarrely insisted “people will die” if the Trump-Russia investigation continues.

The post Did Donald Trump just publicly threaten Michael Flynn’s safety? appeared first on Palmer Report.

Trump speaks with Erdogan about ‘mess’ in Middle East
 

mikenova shared this story .

 

  • Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call

    Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call

  • Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call

Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call 

Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call

President Donald Trump spoke Friday with Turkey’s president “about bringing peace to the mess that I inherited in the Middle East” before hitting the links with Tiger Woods and pro golfer Dustin Johnson.

Yahoo

BACK

President Donald Trump speaks to members of the U.S. Coast Guard at the Lake Worth Inlet Station, on Thanksgiving, Thursday, Nov. 23, 2017, in Riviera Beach, Fla.(Photo: Alex Brandon, AP)

President Trump discussed the path forward in Syria in a phone call with his Turkish counterpart, including what the Turks described as a plan to stop U.S. from going to Kurdish fighters inside the war-torn country.

Trump and Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan “underscored the need to end the humanitarian crisis, allow displaced Syrians to return home, and ensure the stability of a unified Syria free of malign intervention and terrorist safe havens,” the White House said in a statement.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters in Ankara that Trump said that in the call the U.S. would no longer supply arms to Syrian Kurdish fighters that Erdogan regards as terrorists.

The White House statement did not specifically refer to the Kurds, saying only that Trump informed Erdogan “of pending adjustments to the military support provided to our partners on the ground in Syria, now that the battle of Raqqa is complete” and Islamic State militants are on the run.

Erdogan has long protested U.S. aid to Kurdish fighters in Syria, claiming they are an extension of militant groups that have waged a decades-long insurgency inside Turkey. The Turkish government has also expressed concern about Kurdish desires to set up an independent state within Iraq, a new country that would border Turkey.

The Kurds say Turkey has been trying to suppress them.

The Trump-Erdogan call came as Turkey, Russia, and Iran work on a plan to reach a political settlement to the civil war in Syria. Trump spoke last week with Russian President Vladimir Putin before he left for his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla., where he spent Thanksgiving.

More: President Trump, Vladimir Putin hold phone call on North Korea, Syria, other security issues

In announcing his plan to speak with Erdogan earlier Friday, Trump also took shots at his presidential predecessors.

“Will be speaking to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey this morning about bringing peace to the mess that I inherited in the Middle East,” Trump said. “I will get it all done, but what a mistake, in lives and dollars (6 trillion), to be there in the first place!”

Trump has used the $6 trillion figure before to describe the costs of U.S. involvement in Middle East conflicts, but has never specified how he arrives at that amount.

In September, Trump praised Erdogan as a “friend” during a meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly, despite global criticism of his increasingly authoritarian rule in Turkey. Just before that meeting, the U.S. protested a physical attack on protestors at the Turkish ambassador’s residence in Washington, D.C.

The Trump-Erdogan phone call also comes after reports that special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn and his son’s alleged plan to forcibly remove a Muslim cleric from the United States and deliver him to Turkey.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Flynn and his son Michael Flynn Jr. were allegedly were involved in a plan to deliver Fethullah Gulen to the Turkish government, which views Gulen as a political enemy and has pressed the U.S. for his extradition.

More: Report: Mueller probes Michael Flynn’s role in alleged plot to hand over Fethullah Gulen to Turkey

Flynn — who was forced out of his White House job this year after revelations that he had misled officials about his conversations with the Russian ambassador — reportedly discussed the plan with Turkish government representatives last December. The meeting caught the attention of FBI, who have questioned at least four people about it, according to the Journal.

Flynn’s lawyers have denied the allegations, but extraditing Gulen is a major priority for Erdogan. Earlier this year, Erdogan pressed Trump to send back the religious leader his government blames for an attempted coup last year and now lives in exile in Pennsylvania.

The Turkish government alleges Gulen and his followers are using a network of publicly funded charter schools to support revolution that would put his supporters in power in Turkey.

Documents Flynn filed earlier this year with the Justice Department raised fresh questions about his other ties to the Turkish government, even as he was serving as top adviser to Trump’s presidential campaign – including including $530,000 in earnings from a Dutch firm with ties to the Turkish government.

In another tweet on Friday, the president said he would follow up the Turkey phone call by visiting Trump National Golf Club – “quickly” – for a round with pro golf stars Dustin Johnson and Tiger Woods. “Then back to Mar-a-Lago for talks on bringing even more jobs and companies back to the USA!”

Trump’s pledge to play a “quick” game comes as Trump’s critics mock him for the amount of time he spends on the golf course, just as Trump took aim at predecessor Barack Obama for his golf game.

Contributing: Jessica Estepa 

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trump investigation, flynn, turkey, kurds – Google Search
 

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Trump speaks with Turkey’s leader about ‘bringing peace to the …

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Trump and Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan “underscored the need to … Erdogan has long protested U.S. aid to Kurdish fighters in Syria, … is investigating Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn and …

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Mueller Probing Possible Deal Between Turks, Flynn During …

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Sources: Mueller Investigating Possible FlynnTurkish Govt. … Rudy Giuliani, who was a top Trumpcampaign surrogate alongside Flynn, … with a plan President Barack Obama approved to arm Syrian Kurds in the ISIS fight.
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Michael Flynn and the Turkish Connection

The New York Review of BooksNov 20, 2017
Flynn was an integral part of the Trump campaign and briefly served the … Flynn’s work for the Turkishgovernment is also under investigation. …. jihadis, official corruption, the killing of Kurds, and the systematic arrest of …
Trump tells Turkey’s leader: US to stop arming Syrian Kurds
 

mikenova shared this story .

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan with U.S President Donald Trump in the Oval Office of the White House, May 16, 2017.    (Reuters)

ANKARA, Turkey –  The United States will cut off its supply of arms to Kurdish fighters in Syria, President Donald Trump told the Turkish president on Friday, in a move sure to please Turkey but further alienate Syrian Kurds who bore much of the fight against the Islamic State group.

In a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Trump said he’d “given clear instructions” that the Kurds will receive no more weapons — “and that this nonsense should have ended a long time ago,” said Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

The White House confirmed the move in a cryptic statement about the phone call that said Trump had informed the Turk of “pending adjustments to the military support provided to our partners on the ground in Syria.”

The White House called the move “consistent with our previous policy” and noted the recent fall of Raqqa, once the Islamic State group’s self-declared capital but recently liberated by a largely Kurdish force. The Trump administration announced in May it would start arming the Kurds in anticipation of the fight to retake Raqqa.

“We are progressing into a stabilization phase to ensure that ISIS cannot return,” the White House said, using an acronym for the extremist group.

The move could help ease strained tensions between the U.S. and Turkey, two NATO allies that have been sharply at odds about how best to wage the fight against IS. Turkey considers the Kurdish Syrian fighters, known by the initials YPG, to be terrorists because of their affiliation to outlawed Kurdish rebels that have waged a three decade-long insurgency in Turkey. Yet the U.S. chose to partner with the YPG in Syria anyway, arguing that the battle-hardened Kurds were the most effective fighting force available.

Cavusoglu, who said he was in the room with Erdogan during Trump’s call, quoted the U.S. president as saying he had given instructions to U.S. generals and to national security adviser H.R. McMaster that “no weapons would be issued.”

“Of course, we were very happy with this,” Cavusoglu said.

Yet for the Kurds, it was the latest demoralizing blow to their hopes for greater recognition in the region. Last month, the Kurds in neighboring Iraq saw their recent territorial gains erased by the Iraqi military, which seized the oil-rich city of Kirkuk and other disputed areas from the Kurdish regional government in retaliation for a Kurdish independence referendum that the U.S. ardently opposed.

Trump’s decision appeared to catch both the Pentagon and the U.S. State Department off guard. Officials at both agencies, who would normally be informed of changes in U.S. policy toward arming the Syrian Kurds, said they were unaware of any changes. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity.

It was unclear whether the Trump administration notified the Kurds of the move before telling the Turks. Nor was it how much significance the change would have on the ground, considering the fight against IS is almost over.

The United States has been arming the Kurds in their fight against IS through an umbrella group known as the Syrian Democratic Forces, or SDF, which is comprised of Kurdish as well as Arab fighters.

But the retreat of IS, which has lost nearly all its territory in Syria, has altered the dynamics in the region and a U.S. defense official said he was unaware of any additional arms scheduled to be transferred to the Kurds, even before the Turkish announcement.

Last week, Col. Ryan Dillon, the chief spokesman for the U.S. coalition that is fighting IS in Iraq and Syria, said there has yet to be any reduction in the number of U.S. advisers working with the SDF. His comments appeared to suggest the possibility that changes in the level and type of U.S. military support for the Syrian Kurds could be coming.

As the fight against IS has waned in recent months, the U.S. has pledged to carefully monitor the weapons it provides the Kurds, notably ensuring that they don’t wind up in the hands of Kurdish insurgents in Turkey known as the PKK.

Both Turkey and the U.S. consider the PKK a terrorist group. But the United States has tried to draw a distinction between the PKK and the Syrian Kurds across the border, while Turkey insists they’re essentially the same.

In both Syria and Iraq, the U.S. relied on Kurdish fighters to do much of the fighting against IS, but those efforts have yet to lead to a realization of the Kurds’ broader aspirations, most notably an independent state.

Washington’s support for the Syrian Kurds, in particular, has been a major thorn in U.S.-Turkish relations for several years, given Turkey’s concerns about the Kurds’ territorial aspirations. In particular, Turkey has feared the establishment of a contiguous, Kurdish-held canton in northern Syria that runs along the Turkish border.

Relations between NATO allies Turkey and the United States have also soured recently over a number of other issues, including Turkey’s crackdown on dissent following a failed coup attempt last year.

Ankara has also demanded that the U.S. extradite a Pennsylvania-based cleric that it blames for fomenting the coup, but the U.S. says Turkey lacks sufficient proof.

Lederman reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Robert Burns and Zeke Miller in Washington contributed to this report.

Donald Trump didn’t know what hit him
 

mikenova shared this story from Palmer Report.

Now that Michael Flynn has begun negotiating a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, one of the more curious questions has become what Donald Trump knew and when he knew it. Flynn is now going to take Trump down, no matter how the two men got to this point. But the details may help shed some light on how Trump can be counted on to respond going forward. As it turns out, Trump didn’t know what hit him.

Here’s how it usually works with these storylines: a major media outlet gets wind of what’s going on and begins putting together a story. Along the way, that media outlet contacts the White House and asks Donald Trump for advance comment on the story. This at least partially tips Trump off about the story that’s about to come out, and he tends to go on a Twitter tirade out of frustration and a desire to distract from the story that’s about to get published. As it turns out, precisely none of that happened this time around.

After the New York Times first broke the story on Thursday evening that Flynn was negotiating a deal, the Washington Post followed up with more detail (link). As it turns out, Flynn’s attorney notified Trump’s attorney about the situation on Wednesday evening. This means that, as Rachel Maddow was reporting live on-air on Wednesday night about the defense fund Trump was setting up for his advisers, and Trump’s attorney followed up with a statement making clear that Flynn would not be included, it was because he had just gotten word from Flynn’s attorney that Flynn was going to flip.

So now we know that, while Donald Trump may or may not have instinctively had some sense of what was inevitably coming, he had no real advance warning that Michael Flynn was going to cut him off on Wednesday night and begin negotiating a deal. If Trump is acting shellshocked and increasingly unsure of himself, it’s because he didn’t know what hit him when the stunning blow landed.

 

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Tuomioja – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from Tuomioja – Google News.

Story image for Tuomioja from UpNorth

Finnish Historians: Former Finnish Foreign Minister An Operative of …

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Finnish Historians: Former Finnish Foreign Minister An Operative of Russian intelligence
 

mikenova shared this story from UpNorth.

Professor and former ambassador, Alpo Rusi and the former party secretary of The Finnish Centre Party, author Jarmo Korhonen have published a new book titled “The Kremlin’s Footsteps – Finlandization and Background of the Spying Scandal in 2002” (Kremlin jalanjälet – suomettuminen ja vuoden 2002 vakoilukohun tausta (Docendo 2017)). The book is available only in Finnish, but it cover issues of high international relevance.

“Tuomioja can be considered as an operative of Russian intelligence after the Zavidovo leak for his positions and openly stated Mareyev-connection,” Rusi and Korhonen write in their book.

The name of the book refers to the “footprints” of Kremlin – two subjects investigated more closely are finlandization and the background of the spying scandal in 2002. The strong connections between both issues are closely examined inside the book.
Alpo Rusi – who is currently a professor at Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania – became the focus of a Finnish spying scandal after leaving his post as an advisor to Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari (1994-2000). Alpo Rusi’s brother, Jukka, had been in contact with the East German STASI during the Cold War and documents concerning Jukka Rusi – in which Alpo Rusi was marked as a possible future contact – were used to label him as a spy.

Book author, Alpo Rusi

The spying claims concerning Alpo Rusi were completely false, but the investigation process revealed many gaps in Finnish society and challenges of Finnish “Vergangenheitsbewältigung” [process of historical reconciliation] in general. What happened to Rusi and President Ahtisaari is almost a prototype of Russian-style active measures. While the investigation itself was kafkaesque, the details of contained inside the broader background can be found inside the byzantine politics which was created in the era of finlandization.

RETURN TO ZAVIDOVO

The book begins by explaining the so-called “Zavidovo Leak”, which took place in the autumn of 1972. Finland was about to enter into an Association Agreement with the European Economic Community (similar to the Ukraine-EU agreement Viktor Yanukovych refused to sign), which many Finnish left-wing politicians openly opposed. Some considered the agreement as a “back-door” to NATO, despite the fact that the provisions concentrated strictly on trade issues and Finland had signed a similar, earlier agreement with the Eastern Bloc countries.

In 1972, President Urho Kekkonen discussed an association agreement with the Soviets in Zavidovo. Leonid Brezhnev expressed his suspicions, but Kekkonen tried his best to convince him that the policy of “neutrality” (which was actually quite heavily Soviet-leaning in the case of Finland) would remain.

Kekkonen wrote a memorandum about his meeting with Brezhnev, and Soviet objections Finland’s EEC Association Agreement. The status of the memo was top secret, but somehow Erkki Tuomioja, then an MP representing the left-wing faction of the Social Democrats, managed to obtain information about the memo and leaked it to Tor Högnäs, a Swedish-speaking journalist usually seen politically as pro-Kekkonen and anti-social democrat. The publication of the high level Soviet opposition to the Finnish-EEC agreement was very likely meant to destroy the entire EEC-process and even Kekkonen’s presidency.

According to Suomen Kuvalehti, the selection of Högnäs to publish the leak, was a great cover operation for Tuomioja and his left-wing comrades, who were able to make Kekkonen believe that foreign minister Ahti Karjalainen was resposible for it. According to the authors of the book, the unofficial working group responsible for the selection of Högnäs consisted of Antero Jyränki, Bo Ahlfors, Erkki Tuomioja, Jaakko Kalela and Jaakko Blomberg.

Kalela and Blomberg belonged to the authors’ collective called Y. Y. Antonen, by which name a column arguing for the necessity of the leak was published in Ydin magazine. The founder of the collective, Kari Tapiola, worked as a secretary for Kalevi Sorsa (a left-wing social democrat with close KGB-connection) whom the memorandum was delivered to in the first place because of his post as minister. Tapiola was able to see all the secret information by Sorsa’s permission.

Kalela and Blomberg made impressive careers as civil servants – Blomberg in the Foreing Ministery and Kalela in the Office of the President. During Tarja Halonen’s presidency, both acted as Ambassadors to Estonia. Kari Tapiola further built his career in the service of international labour organizations. His son, Pirkka Tapiola advises the European External Action Service leadership on Eastern Europe, and more broadly on issues related to democracy and transition.

In his book “Kukkaisvallasta kekkosvaltaan” (Tammi 1993) Tuomioja admitted that he committed the leak but didn’t reveal his own source(s). He probably believed that criminal responsibility won’t reach him anymore for it and that it couldn’t be considered as aggravated treason. However, he did not reveal where he got them information from.

However, presuming that Soviet intelligence – which was closely connected to the anti-EEC social democrats – knew who the leaker was all along, it leaves little room for speculation whether Tuomioja was under the threat of potential blackmail.

Maybe because of his personal animosity towards Kalevi Sorsa, Tuomioja supported Ahtisaari’s presidency in the 1994 election. He even acted as a chairman of Ahtisaari’s support group. In September of 1993 Tuomioja wrote in his diary that his former “home Russian” (personal KGB-officer) Valery Mareyev invited him for a lunch, which shows that contact with the Russian embassy continued.

Rusi shows in his book that like former president Mauno Koivisto, Tuomioja was also reluctant to stand up against Serbian dictator Slobodan Milosevic.

Tuomioja was named as Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2000. Rusi shows in his book that like former president Mauno Koivisto, Tuomioja was also reluctant to stand up against Serbian dictator Slobodan Milosevic. When the negotiation process for the Lisbon Treaty took place, Tuomioja’s role in downplaying the security guarantee based on EU membership was significant. “Not a specially meritious stateman’s act”, historian Jukka Tarkka has stated.

When The European Union made  decision to place sanctions against Russia in 2014, Tuomioja expressed his dissenting opinion in the governmental committee. He hoped that Finland would leave an option to oppose the sanctions if a ceasefire held, no matter how other EU countries acted.

After leaving his post as Foreign Minister, Tuomioja has paid private visits to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and chaired a network called Historians Without Borders.

“Tuomioja can be considered as an operative of Russian intelligence after the Zavidovo leak for his positions and openly stated Mareyev-connection”, Rusi and Korhonen write in their book.

A recent UpNorth article analyzed some of the correspondence and relationship between Tuomioja and pro-Russian adjunct professor Johan Bäckman.

Historial connecitons between the KGB and Finnish Political LeadershipHistorial connecitons between the KGB and Finnish Political Leadership

FSB, SUPO AND THEIR NETWORKS

The Finnish Security Police, SUPO, was penetrated by the KGB during the Cold War. According to Vasily Mitrokhin’s archives, its chief Arvo Pentti was recruited as an agent by the code name “Mauri” and rewarded by 150 000 Finnish marks.

His successor Seppo Tiitinen held the post 1978-1990. In 1992 he was named Secretary General in the Finnish parliament from which post he retired in 2015. According to the authors of the book, British intelligence warned that Russian intelligence could blackmail Mr. Tiitinen.

According to Rusi and Korhonen, not only the influential Western intelligence community, but Estonia’s Internal Security, KAPO had also delivered warnings about the KGB’s and its successors’ influence on SUPO.

SUPO seems to have ignored this even in the most obvious spying cases (for example in the case of Jaakko Laakso and President Tarja Halonen’s strategist Riitta Juntunen, who was recruited as a STASI agent), which raises many questions. When the latter case was raised publicly, SUPO was led by Seppo Nevala, Kalevi Sorsa’s former secretary (as then President Tarja Halonen and Prime Minister Paavo Lipponen were).

Last year, Suomen Sotilas published a memorandum concerning Nevala’s nomination as the deputy chief of SUPO which took place when Tiitinen (with his Center Party background) was nominated as the chief. The memorandum includes detailed information about how Nevala used alcohol in an inappropriate way and has some challenging personality traits. It’s also mentioned that Nevala is formally unqualified for the position, but whether these facts have enough correlation with the other nomination – probably referring to Tiitinen – the writer of the memo doesn’t believe Nevala’s nomination will be cancelled either.

It looks like two Finnish Presidents actively worked to keep the list that included 18 people associated with the STASI, secret. This Tiitinen/Hassinen list (Raino Hassinen worked in Ahtisaari’s office as an advisor) was ignored by both Mauno Koivisto (1990) and Martti Ahtisaari (1999). According to Rusi and Korhonen, Kalevi Sorsa and many top officials of the Finnish Foreign Ministery were on the list. When the list was evaluated in Ahtisaari’s office, the President himself, Chief of Staff Jaakko Kalela and Hassinen were present.

Although Ahtisaari was in principle pro-western and relatively independent from party politics, he was elected to his post as a candidate of the Social Democrats. Also his career in the Foreign Ministry begun by Sorsa’s recommendation. The “spying scandal” constructed around Alpo Rusi – who was independent from the Social Democratic background forces – was needed to cover the real Eastern intelligence influence in Finland.

The distrust between the President and his advisor was also provoked with rumours about the latter having inappropriate contact with the Russians during the Balkan peace process. It’s commonly known that the erosion of trust and confidence between politicians and their closest advisors – and people in general – is one of the basic tactics of the KGB and its successors. Many of of those who acted behind the scenes during the Zavidovo leak – such as Kalela and Tuomioja – were now active inside or near the President’s office.

However, the President of the United States Bill Clinton expressed his special thanks to Rusi after peace was achieved and Ahtisaari’s advisor was responsible for organizing the summit of Sarajevo in 1999.

It is likely that Ahtisaari himself – later rewarded with Nobel Peace Prize – felt somehow threatened. Jussi Lähde, who had worked as communications manager of the President, has said that he received a call from London in summer 1999. The caller offered a significant amount of money in exchange for compromising information about Ahtisaari.

 WHAT HAPPENED TO  RENÉ NYBERG?

Paavo Lipponen, the long-serving prime minister who started his political career as Kalevi Sorsa’s secretary and international secretary of the Social Democrats, strongly opposed publication of the so-called Tiitinen’s list and the opening of the archives concerning the STASI’s activities in Finland. In his famous column, he imagined how a guillotine would be constructed in central Helsinki and “hippies” marched to kick the bodies after the heads had been removed. In Lipponen’s vision, Alpo Rusi would sign the doors and graves of the suspects.

Rusi’s book “Vasemmalta ohi – kamppailu Suomen ulkopoliittisesta johtajuudesta rautaesiripun varjossa 1945-1990” (Gummerus) was published in the same year. In that book, he revealed many details about the STASI contacts with Finnish politicians – ‘especially Social Democrats’.

In 2008, Lipponen announced that he signed an agreement with Nord Stream AG for consulting services. This job has paid him many hundreds of thousands euros. Also his former secretary Antton Rönnholm – now acting as party secretary of the Social Democrats – and many other associates have worked for Russian gas interests. Nord Stream AG is led by former STASI agent Matthias Warnig.

Already in 1998, then prime minister Lipponen’s advisor Timo Pesonen spread rumours that “SUPO is following Rusi and Nyberg”. Somehow, the information was widely spread although Rusi himself was not made aware of it.

We now know that Rusi withstood the scandal and has since been proven innocent. But what was the case with Nyberg?
After his diplomatic career in Moscow and Berlin, René Nyberg (whom Pesonen likely referred to) founded a consulting company called East Office. The company claims to specialize in building Finnish companies’ relations with Russia. Its board is led by former Center Party Prime Minister Esko Aho, who was also invited to join the board of the Kremlin owned Sberbank last year.

When Nyberg published his book “Viimeinen juna Moskovaan” (Siltala 2014) Lipponen praised it.
Recently, a retired ambassador Hannu Himanen recommended Nato-membership for Finland in his book Länttä vai itää – Suomi ja geopolitiikan paluu (Docendo 2017). Nyberg soon claimed in Helsingin Sanomat that Himanen’s book was unethical.

WILL ANYTHING CHANGE?

The  new book by Rusi and Korhonen includes some very important historical puzzle pieces about recent Finnish history and Eastern intelligence operations here. At the same time, it provides another example of the methods the Kremlin and its operatives are willing to use to achieve their geopolitical goals and discredit those who may threaten their impelialistc goals of securing “spheres of influence”.

During the last few month,s we have seen a flow of new – or at least recently organized – information regarding these issues. Historian Juho Ovaskainen has demonstrated in his book “Mauno Koiviston idänkortti” (Otava 2017) how Urho Kekkonen’s successor used The Soviet Union to achieve his career goals. It is known that he was good friend of Viktor Vladimirov, a Soviet diplomat in Helsinki, who used to lead KGB’s assasination department.

While the revelations may uncover further revelations, the old network is taking what it can. It is likely that when these old Soviet-based networks of influence lose their influence and importance, Russia may start to provide more support to the Western European style anti-establishment movements.

Recently, the Kremlin has given archival access to Kimmo Rentola, Timo Vihavainen, Ohto Manninen and Sergey Zhuravljov for historical research. Their book “Varjo Suomen yllä – Stalinin salaiset kansio”t (Docendo 2017) gives perspective to policies of the Soviet Union in relation to Finland under Stalin’s regime.

In 2014, professor Vihavainen received an Order of Friendship from Russian president Vladimir Putin. In 1990 he became known for his criticism toward finlandization, but now he is known as a strongly conservative “traditionalist”. In June 2014 he said the Ukrainian Euromaidan was started by “a violent mob” and compared those protestors to the terrorist separatists in Eastern Ukraine. He has also attacked the idea of lustration in Finland, which has gained more vocal support lately (the youth arm of the National Coalition (Conservative) Party adopted publication of Tiitinen’s list in its policy platform of 2017).

Professor Kimmo Rentola is a historian and former communist. He is the author of “Ratakatu 12” (WSOY 2009), a history book concerning and ordered by SUPO, then lead by Seppo Nevala. In 2016 he was elected to the board of Historians without Borders, organization founded by Erkki Tuomioja.

PERSONAL PRONOUNS

When asked about finlandization in 2009, Finnish-Estonian author Sofi Oksanen stated that if it was so normal, why can’t we talk about it openly? She also recommended to start using personal pronouns in such evaluation.

When it comes to Russian intelligence activities in Finland (yet not equal to the term finlandization), Rusi and Korhonen have opened the Pandora’s box. It will not be closed any time soon.

As he investigates Trump’s aides, special counsel’s record shows surprising flaws
 

mikenova shared this story .

When he was named special counsel in May, Robert S. Mueller III was hailed as the ideal lawman — deeply experienced, strait-laced and nonpartisan — to investigate whether President Trump’s campaign had helped with Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

The accolades squared with Mueller’s valor as a Marine rifle platoon commander in Vietnam and his integrity as a federal prosecutor, a senior Justice Department official and FBI director from 2001 to 2013, the longest tenure since J. Edgar Hoover. He was praised by former courtroom allies and opponents, and by Democrats and Republicans in Congress.

But at 73, Mueller’s record also shows a man of fallible judgment who can be slow to alter his chosen course. At times, he has intimidated or provoked resentment among subordinates. And his tenacious yet linear approach to evaluating evidence led him to fumble the biggest U.S. terrorism investigation since 9/11.

Now, as he leads a sprawling investigation aimed at the White House, Mueller’s prosecutorial discretion looms over the Trump presidency.

On what terms would Mueller offer immunity from prosecution to investigative targets? How broadly will he interpret his mandate to probe not only the 2016 campaign but also matters that “may arise directly from the investigation”?

Will he target Trump’s sprawling family business and financial empire and the years before the developer ran for the White House?

::

Robert Swan Mueller III began life on an elite footing.

Raised in affluent suburbs west of Philadelphia, he attended the St. Paul’s School in New Hampshire (classmates included future Secretary of State John F. Kerry), before majoring in politics at Princeton. He joined the Marines after graduation and was awarded Navy and Marine Corps medals in Vietnam, where he was shot in the thigh. He graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1973.

Bored by a stint at a white-shoe San Francisco law firm, the jut-jawed Mueller switched to the U.S. attorney’s office there in 1976. Colleagues say he typically arrived by 6:30 a.m., at times in his Marine-issue green raincoat. He played on the office softball team but was careful not to let down his guard while socializing.

“He’d join us, have one — and it was only one — and then his wife would arrive to pick him up,” recalled a colleague.


Editor’s Note

This article is based, in part, on interviews with more than two dozen lawyers and investigators who have worked with Mueller. Citing the sensitivity of the Russia investigation and potential repercussions, most spoke on the condition of anonymity. Mueller declined, through a spokesman, to comment.


Mueller also is remembered for a headline-grabbing case that ended in failure.

In 1979, the government lodged then-novel racketeering charges against 33 members of the Hells Angels motorcycle club. The indictments alleged bombings and murders as well as the manufacture and sale of illegal drugs. The defendants and their supporters were so feared that bulletproof glass was installed in court to shield the judge.

The first trial, of 18 defendants, ended with only five convictions. All were overturned on appeal.

Mueller, who led the U.S. attorney’s special prosecutions unit, then took over the case. He dropped many of the charges, including against Ralph “Sonny” Barger, leader of the club’s Oakland chapter, whose charismatic testimony had dominated the first trial.

Mueller led a team of four prosecutors in court when the second trial, with 11 defendants, began in October 1980. But after four months, the jury said it was deadlocked, and the judge declared a mistrial. Mueller decided not to ask for a retrial.

Richard B. Mazer, a defense lawyer at both trials, said the government was unable to prove the Hells Angels was a racketeering enterprise. Key prosecution witnesses, he said, seemed unreliable — especially those granted immunity to testify despite having committed violent crimes themselves.

“They made a mess of it,” Mazer recalled. “It was an entirely snitch case. It depended entirely on the quality of snitches.”

But Mazer and Alan Caplan, another defense lawyer, praised Mueller’s straightforward handling of the case.

“We fought hard, but I can’t conceivably say anything negative about him,” Caplan said.

About a year after the case collapsed, a new U.S. attorney in San Francisco chose a prosecutor with more trial experience to head the office’s criminal division, a post that Mueller had held for a year.

Mueller responded by transferring to the U.S. attorney’s office in Boston. He prosecuted financial fraud, terrorism and public corruption cases for six years, and served as acting U.S. attorney from 1986 to 1987.

One case — involving a Soviet-bloc spy — gave Mueller an early window into U.S.-Russia intrigues.

At the direction of the Justice Department’s internal security division, Mueller negotiated a plea agreement with an East German physicist named Alfred Zehle and his lawyer. In February 1985, Zehle admitted in court that he had conspired to deliver U.S. defense information to East German intelligence authorities.

Under the agreement, the judge sentenced Zehle only to the time he had served in jail after he was arrested at a scientific conference in Boston. Zehle, in turn, became a bargaining chip for a major spy swap.

“We ultimately got 25 of our people out, including their families,” in a trade for Zehle and several other Soviet-bloc spies, recalled a U.S. official who was involved with the negotiations.

The successful June 1985 exchange helped pave the way, the official said, for a more significant exchange by Washington and Moscow.

In February 1986, officials again faced off for a trade on the so-called Bridge of Spies between East and West Germany. Among those escorted to freedom was Natan Sharansky, the celebrated Russian human rights activist who had served nine years in Soviet prisons.

As the Cold War ended, Mueller moved to “main Justice” in Washington. He easily won his first Senateconfirmation after President George H.W. Bush appointed him assistant U.S. attorney general, responsible for the criminal division.

Mueller oversaw investigations of Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega, the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, and Gambino crime family boss John Gotti, among other high-profile cases. But his tendency to command, rather than inspire, again came into sharp relief.

“He doesn’t invite disagreement,” said a former prosecutor who served under Mueller. “He’s an order-giver.”

He could be harsh on subordinates — sparking resentment when he referred privately to reassigning career lawyers as “moving the furniture.”

::

In 1993, at age 50, Mueller decided to try private practice again, joining Hale and Dorr as a partner in Washington, representing corporate clients.

The money was better, but Muller was unfulfilled. After two years, he returned to government service — signing on as a homicide prosecutor in the District of Columbia. It was a time of mayhem in the nation’s capital, made worse by the scourge of crack cocaine.

Mueller began working with a “cold case” squad, comprised of Metropolitan Police detectives and FBI agents, that sought to bring murderers to justice.

The squad sent applications for search warrants and subpoenas for Mueller’s review before seeking a judge’s approval. Unlike some prosecutors, Mueller “wouldn’t automatically give a signature,” recalled one of the investigators.

“He would ask, ‘Have you done your work? Do you have your facts?’ … He knew what he was asking was the way to make sure everything stood up” in court.

Building cases often entailed forging trust with victims, witnesses and suspects. Relating to both the sympathetic and the unsavory did not play to Mueller’s strengths.

“He was a gruff guy, and a lot of times, there wasn’t much warmth or ability to really build a bond or connect with a victim-witness,” said the same investigator. “There’s times when you’ve got to bond with the suspect to get what you need. His personality wasn’t necessarily the best for that.”

Nor was Mueller an easy fit with juries in Washington, especially in the freewheeling local Superior Court, where decorum is typically below what judges demand in U.S. District Court.

“In D.C. Superior Court, it’s a bit like meatball surgery. It’s a bit like a M.A.S.H. unit — it’s the unexpected,” said one of Mueller’s former colleagues. “His strength was not as a M.A.S.H. unit trial lawyer.”

Mueller, a registered Republican, moved back to San Francisco in 1998 after President Clinton appointed him U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California. In July 2001, President George W. Bush nominated him as FBI director, and he won unanimous Senate confirmation. Mueller asked the White House for a delay, however, so he could undergo treatment for prostate cancer.

His first day on the job was Sept. 4, 2001 — a week before hijacked airliners slammed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania in the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history.

At 7 a.m. Sept. 12, Mueller, then-Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft and other officials arrived for an emergency briefing at the FBI’s operations center. The senior agent had been given an hour to prepare while investigators were still combing airline manifests and scouring crash sites.

When Mueller asked a rapid-fire series of questions, the agent replied that accurate information was not yet “established.”

“ ‘I want answers, goddamn it!’ ” Mueller exploded, an official who was present recalled.

Mueller already was coming under siege from critics who questioned why the FBI had not prevented the 9/11 attacks. Fear spread of a “second wave” terrorist strike.

Mueller countered by announcing plans to reshape the FBI. Its first priority would be to prevent another terrorist attack — not conventional law enforcement.

The enormity of the FBI’s challenge emerged within weeks.

A handful of letters, laced with powdered anthrax, killed five people and sickened 17 others. The government closed congressional office buildings, the Supreme Court and postal facilities as the country braced for further biological terrorism.

But Mueller’s FBI struggled for nearly seven years to determine who was responsible — even as he personally managed the case from headquarters.

“The director was always the leader of the anthrax investigation, period,” said Michael Mason, former head of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.

The FBI focused on Steven Hatfill, a virologist at the U.S. Army’s laboratories at Ft. Detrick, Md. In January 2003, Mueller assured Congressional leaders in a closed-door briefing that bloodhounds had traced anthrax from the attacks to Hatfill.

But Hatfill had no experience handling anthrax. Nor did he have access to anthrax stored at Ft. Detrick or elsewhere. Years later, the FBI would reject the bloodhound evidence as unreliable.

After media leaks fingered Hatfill, he sued the FBI and the Justice Department on privacy grounds. In June 2008, the government agreed to pay Hatfill about $5.8 million.

Two months later, on Aug. 6, Mueller summoned senior investigators and prosecutors on the anthrax case to his seventh-floor office. The FBI would hold a news conference that afternoon, and he wanted to recap the case’s stunning denouement.

Bruce E. Ivins, an Army microbiologist at Ft. Detrick who specialized in handling anthrax, had committed suicide after his lawyers informed him he was about to be charged with murder for the letter attacks.

Evidence showed Ivins had created and held custody of a batch of anthrax traced by DNA to each of the killings. Ivins had spent hours alone in specially equipped labs just before each batch of letters was mailed.

Mueller let others hold the news conference. Some aides who met Mueller that day think he was reluctant to publicly address the missteps with Hatfill, the bloodhounds and the long delay in focusing on Ivins.

“I think he was personally embarrassed,” said one. “I would assess him as someone that can’t accept the fact that he screwed up.”

::

At FBI headquarters, protecting the director from embarrassment was ingrained.

A case in point unfolded in 2011 — just as the Senate was considering President Obama’s request to extend Mueller’s expiring term as FBI director by two years.

The FBI’s Inspection Division, a unit that scrutinizes bureau operations, conducted a three-week examination of the Directorate of Intelligence, a unit that Mueller created to carry out the shift in preventing terrorism.

“They inspected it, and they wrote the inspection report and it said the whole thing’s broken — set it on fire and start from scratch,” said a former official familiar with the report. Another ex-official confirmed the account.

Mueller’s top aides saw peril in following normal procedure — forwarding the report to the Justice Department’s inspector general for possible follow-up action.

“It was, ‘The director will get skewered. We’ve got to protect him, and we can’t issue this,’ ” the former official recalled.

The aides kept the report in-house, the former official said, by tweaking its language.

“Anywhere it said, ‘inspection,’ they changed it to ‘review.’ And said this was a review, not an inspection, and therefore they didn’t have to issue it to … the inspector general.”

Two years later, Mueller — without citing the inspection — informed Congress that he had restructured the Directorate of Intelligence “to maximize organizational collaboration, identify and address emerging threats and more effectively integrate intelligence and operations within the FBI.”

During his final months as FBI director, Mueller was again enlisted to help with a thorny matter in U.S.-Russia relations.

In the summer of 2013, the White House asked Mueller to negotiate the release from Russia of Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who stole volumes of classified material on U.S. surveillance operations at home and abroad. Snowden had fled to Moscow after leaking the data to journalists.

Unlike the Cold War spy cases, the U.S. did not offer a trade. The Obama administration wanted Moscow to return Snowden as part of a diplomatic “reset,” an ultimately unsuccessful effort to improve relations with Russia.

Lisa Monaco, the White House’s Homeland Security advisor, tasked Mueller to talk to Alexander Bortnikov, head of Russia’s internal security and counter-intelligence service, the FSB.

For at least a week, Mueller called Bortnikov’s office, starting at 3 a.m. in Washington. Each time, the FBI director was turned aside without getting Bortnikov on the line.

“Mueller just kept calling over there, like begging to talk to the guy,” said a former official. Instead, Snowden was granted asylum in Russia.

The unsuccessful outreach offered Mueller insight into Russian intelligence, who U.S. officials say helped hack and leak Democratic Party emails last year in an effort to undermine U.S. democracy and to help Trump’s campaign.

Investigators and lawyers who have worked with Mueller say that his legacy as special counsel will depend, ultimately, on his resolve, his integrity and especially his judgment.

“If he believes somebody has committed a crime, he’s going to do whatever he can to hold them accountable,” said a former FBI colleague. “Trump’s name or brand is not going to back down Mueller.”

david.willman@latimes.com

Finnish Historians: Former Finnish Foreign Minister An Operative of Russian intelligence – UpNorth
 

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UpNorth
Finnish Historians: Former Finnish Foreign Minister An Operative of Russian intelligence
UpNorth
Professor and former ambassador, Alpo Rusi and the former party secretary of The Finnish Centre Party, author Jarmo Korhonen have published a new book titled The Kremlin’s Footsteps Finlandization and Background of the Spying Scandal in 2002 …
Yevgeny Nikulin – Google Search
 

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Czech Court Rules Russian Hacking Suspect Can Be Extradited to US

RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty8 hours ago
A prison guard walks outside a courtroom during an appeal by Yevgeny Nikulin, who faces charges of hacking computers of American …
Supreme Court in Prague approves extradition of Russian hacker …
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Story image for Yevgeny Nikulin from https://en.crimerussia.com/

Detained in Czech Republic Russian hacker released from …

<a href=”https://en.crimerussia.com/” rel=”nofollow”>https://en.crimerussia.com/</a>Nov 23, 2017
Detained in Prague at the request of the US Russian hacker Yevgeny Nikulin is accused of hacking servers of the Central Intelligence Agency.
Robert Mueller nabs Trump-Russia hacker at the worst possible time for Donald Trump
 

mikenova shared this story from Palmer Report.

If Donald Trump was thinking that his Thanksgiving holiday weekend couldn’t get any worse after Michael Flynn revealed he’s cutting a Trump-Russia deal, things have indeed found a way to get even worse. An infamous Russian hacker, believed to be near the center of the Trump-Russia election hacking scandal, is being extradited to the United States so that the FBI and Special Counsel Robert Mueller can have their way with him.

The Czech Republic has ruled that Russian hacker Yevgeny Nikulin will be extradited to the United States, and not returned to Russia, according to a new report from Radio Free Europe (link). Nikulin’s attorney has revealed that the FBI believes Nikulin was involved in Trump-Russia election hacking. Mueller has jurisdiction over the FBI in all matters relating to the Trump-Russia scandal, which means that Nikulin is now all his.

So now, even as Robert Mueller is gaining Michael Flynn as a cooperating witness with valuable information about the Trump campaign’s sign of Trump-Russia collusion, he’s also gaining a hacker with insider information on the Russian side of the collusion. There is no guarantee that Nikulin will cut a deal once he arrives in the United States. But assuming he doesn’t want to spend the rest of his life rotting in an American prison, it’s likely that he’ll work something out with Mueller and spill his guts.

To give you an idea of how much value the United States government places on the cooperation of Yevgeny Nikulin, it had him arrested on an Interpol warrant more than a year ago before election day and has been trying to get him extradited ever since. The timing of this extradition ruling appears to be coincidental to Michael Flynn’s decision to cut a deal. It simply means that Donald Trump’s luck and his future prospects are growing dimmer by the hour.

The post Robert Mueller nabs Trump-Russia hacker at the worst possible time for Donald Trumpappeared first on Palmer Report.

Cambridge Analytica endangers global democracy, and it must be stopped
 

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John Raines, 84, Who Evaded Capture in an F.B.I. Break-in, Dies
 

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Dr. Raines and his wife were among the antiwar protesters who broke into a field office in 1971 and stole hundreds of files, which they gave to journalists.

Michael Flynn may cooperate with Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation – PBS NewsHour
 

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Michael Flynn may cooperate with Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation
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Flynn was facing a Justice Department investigation over his foreign business dealings even before Mueller was appointed as special counsel in May to investigate potential coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia to influence the 2016 …
A Split From Trump Indicates That Flynn Is Moving to Cooperate With MuellerNew York Times
Michael Flynn, Trump’s ex-National Security Adviser, focus of Russia investigation: What to knowFox News
Flynn may be moving to cooperate with Mueller’s Russia probeABC News
HuffPost –Newsweek
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Russian nationalist march on National Unity Day in Moscow on November 4, 2017 – Google Search
 

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Russian nationalist march on National Unity Day in Moscow on November 4, 2017 – Google Search
 

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Story image for Russian nationalist march on National Unity Day in Moscow on November 4, 2017 from Aljazeera.com

The death of the Russian far right

<a href=”http://Aljazeera.com” rel=”nofollow”>Aljazeera.com</a>Nov 23, 2017
Participants carry a banner during a Russian nationalist march on National Unity Day in Moscow on November 4, 2017. The banner reads: “To …

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Police Detain Nationalists As Russians Mark National Unity Day

RadioFreeEurope/RadioLibertyNov 4, 2017
Police Detain Nationalists As Russians Mark National Unity Day … Police detained dozens of nationalistdemonstrators in Moscow on November 4 at an antigovernment … Organizers of the Russian March said more than 70 demonstrators were … Maltsev (right) at a Russian opposition rally on May 6, 2017.

Story image for Russian nationalist march on National Unity Day in Moscow on November 4, 2017 from The Jamestown Foundation

Russian March 2017: Smaller Than in Years Past, but More Likely to …

The Jamestown FoundationNov 6, 2017
The annual “Russian March” on November 4 (National Unity Day) has become a rallying point for the nationalist opposition to the regime. … seemed to promise parades in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Ekaterinburg, Vologda and …

Story image for Russian nationalist march on National Unity Day in Moscow on November 4, 2017 from Channel NewsAsia

Police detain dozens in Moscow amid fear of anti-government attacks

Channel NewsAsiaNov 5, 2017
Russian anti-riot policemen detain a demonstrator taking part in a nationalist march during the National Unity Day in Moscow on Nov 04, 2017.
The death of the Russian far right | Far Right
 

mikenova shared this story from Al Jazeera English.

On November 4, a few hundred people gathered for the annual ultranationalist “Russian march” in Moscow. With chants like “Glory to Russia” and “Freedom for political prisoners”, the demonstrators tried to march through the Lyublino neighbourhood of Moscow, before the police dispersed the crowd, arresting dozens.

But this year’s march was a far cry from what it used to be in the late 2000s and early 2010s when thousands of people would join well-organised columns replete with banners, flags and drummers.

Today, most of the leaders of the ultranationalist groups that used to organise the march are either in jail or in self-imposed exile. Their supporters consider them to be politically persecuted and complain about increasing state repression.

Although the Kremlin has been accused of supporting conservative and far-right political groups in Europe, at home it seems to be becoming increasingly intolerant towards groups that propagate ideas similar to their Western counterparts.

In the past few years, and especially since the conflict in Ukraine erupted in 2014, the Russian authorities have cracked down on nationalist groups under the guise of criminal investigations or accusations of extremism under the infamous “anti-extremism” Law 282.

‘Controlled nationalism’

In the early 2000s, Russian President Vladimir Putin was finishing his first presidential term when two colour revolutions struck nearby – the first in Georgia in 2013 and the second in Ukraine in 2014. Large crowds in Tbilisi and Kiev demanded democratic change and major political reforms. The possibility of a colour revolution erupting in Russia seemed too real.

It was then that the Kremlin looked to the right. Russian observers would later identify this strategy of employing nationalist forces as “controlled nationalism”.

“Controlled nationalism is about using nationalists in some [political] games. In some cases, [the authorities] would support nationalists in order to keep the regime alive, to fight the threat of a colour revolution,” says Anton Shekhovstov, visiting fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences in Austria.

“They thought that if they supported those ultranationalist movements, they would decrease the opportunity of nationalists becoming a force that would destabilise the regime,” he explains.

In early 2005, in response to the colour revolutions, the International Eurasian movement, headed by Alexander Dugin, a right-wing political scientist and ideologue (whom Western journalists eventually nicknamed “Putin’s Rasputin”) createda youth wing, the Eurasian Youth Union (ESM). Its aim was to whip up nationalist sentiment and mobilise young people against anti-government attitudes.

That same year, the Russian authorities decided to finally do away with the November 7 official holiday celebrating the October Revolution. They moved the allocated day off to November 4 – the day Moscow was liberated from the Poles in 1612, an official holiday in tsarist Russia until 1917.

The authorities named the new holiday “National Unity Day”, but there wasn’t much public enthusiasm for it and most Russians didn’t even know its history. So when the ESM requested to hold a right-wing march on that day, the local authorities readily obliged.

Other ultranationalist organisations and skinhead groups joined the ESM and the turnout that year surprised many: Some 3,000 people marched, chanting “Glory to Russia” and “Russians forward”, as young men made Nazi salutes in front of TV cameras.

In the years that followed, the ESM was pushed out of the organising committee of the march for being too pro-Kremlin and two other groups took the lead: the Movement Against Illegal Immigration (DPNI) and the Slavic Union (SS). The DPNI was led by Alexander Potkin, who changed his name to Belov (“bely” in Russian means white) and the SS was headed by Dmitry Dyomushkin. Both men are now in jail.

“Belov was my assistant in the Duma. He became an opportunist and has ended up in jail,” says Andrei Savelev, founder and leader of the “Great Russia” nationalist movement, who was elected to the Duma in 2003. At around the same time, Dyomushkin was an assistant to another member of the Duma during that period, Nikolay Kuryanovich from the pro-Kremlin ultranationalist Liberal Democratic Party of Russia.

“Аll these years Dyomushkin was surprisingly untouchable. He was doing things for which others would go to jail. For four to five years, the justice system did not touch him,” says Savelev.

According to him, Dyomushkin and Belov were coopted by the Russian authorities. He says this was why he withdrew his organisation from the Russian march.

Ivan Beletsky, a close associate of Dyomushkin who took over organising the march in 2016, rejects the idea of cooptation and claims that “Great Russia” is a pro-government group. He says that the authorities tried but failed to take control of the Russian march in the late 2000s and were compelled to permit it in order to “cool down popular agitation”.

“The Russian march is a protest march: against the government, against corruption, and for a change of power,” he says, speaking to Al Jazeera via Skype from a location outside of Russia that he refused to disclose.

In July 2011, Dyomushkin and Belov caused a stir within the ultranationalist movement for going to Chechnya and meeting with its president, Ramazan Kadyrov, a Kremlin loyalist, despite their anti-Chechen and anti-Muslim rhetoric. Dyomushkin subsequently went to Grozny a number of times.

In August 2011, DPNI was banned by the Russian government (the SS had been banned a year earlier). Nevertheless, the government allowed the Russian march to take place. On November 4, more than 10,000 nationalists, joined by opposition politicians like Alexei Navalny, marched in Lyublino with banners reading “Stop feeding Caucasus”. Over the years, the central government has been perceived as being quite generous in its budget allocation to the Chechen Republic in the North Caucasus and has been criticised by both nationalists and liberals for it.

In 2012, ultranationalist organisations participating in the Russian march backed anti-government protests. The merger between regular opposition and nationalists worried the government and the Federal Security Service (FSB) considered it a potentially “revolutionary situation”, says Beletsky.

Schism in the far right and crackdown

The events of 2014 in Ukraine caught the ultranationalist groups in Russia by surprise. On one hand, the Kremlin was employing strong nationalist rhetoric claiming Crimea was “rightfully” Russian and that ethnic Russians living in Ukraine had to be protected; on the other, fellow Ukrainian far-right groups were supporting the Maidan and opposing the annexation.

“In 2014, the Kremlin demanded full loyalty from all Russian nationalists,” says Shekhovtsov. “Some of them declined to become loyal to the Kremlin.”

The result was a “schism” in the nationalist movement with one camp supporting the annexation of Crimea and the breakaway regions of Donetsk and Luhansk, and the other opposing both and supporting the Ukrainian central government.

“We right-wing nationalists – we consider [the breakaway regions in Eastern Ukraine] Putin’s machinations. We stood up against this and we suffered fierce repressions,” says Beletsky.

On November 4, 2014, there were two events in Moscow that claimed to be the Russian march – one supporting the annexation of Crimea and the other rejecting it. In the following months, one by one leaders of ultranationalist groups supporting the latter were arrested on various charges.

In 2015, Belov was arrested and a year later convicted on charges of money laundering related to a Kazakh bank and spreading extremism among Russian-speaking Kazakh citizens. He was sentenced to seven and a half years in jail.

In 2016, Dyomushkin was arrested for posting a photo of a previous Russian march in which a banner saying “Russian power in Russia” was visible. He was accused of spreading “extremism” and handed two and a half years in prison. A previous court case against him on similar charges dating from 2011 ended in early 2014 without a sentence due to an expiration of the statute of limitations.

According to his lawyer, Dmitry Baharev, who also used to be a member of the SS, the case against him is politically motivated.

“Usually for pictures, they give suspended sentences, but Dyomushkin got prison,” he says. “In my opinion, this is connected with the events in Ukraine.”

Another close associate of Dyomushkin and Belov and a frequent Russian march attendee, Georgy Borovikov, а leader of the banned National Patriotic Front “Memory” was arrested and sentenced to seven and a half years in prison in 2014 for robbery and torture.

Other far-right leaders managed to escape before being arrested. Beletsky says he fled the country fearing arrest as he was questioned multiple times and briefly detained this year after organising nationalists to join Navalny for an anti-government protest in March.

Yury Gorsky, also an organiser of the Russian march and former member of various ultranationalist groups, was charged with spreading extremism and is currently in Lithuania. Igor Artyomov, the former leader of the banned Russian All-National Union, which also used to participate in the march, received political asylum in the US.

Prominent ultranationalist vlogger Vyacheslav Maltsev, who at some point was associated with “Great Russia” and also attended Russian marches, fled from Russia after being briefly detained and is currently in hiding in a European country. Maltsev called for a “revolution” on November 5. Many of his supporters had previously been or were subsequently arrested.

Human rights groups have been divided over whether or not to consider the detention and imprisonment of ultranationalists to be political prosecution. Human rights organisation “Memorial” considers that in the case of Belov, there are “signs of political motivation”.

“All of these big nationalist leaders are guilty, not necessarily of what they accuse them of, but there is a lot of other things they did. The authorities have not undertaken to sort out these things because it is too difficult or long, so they stuck on them whatever they could,” says Natalya Yudina, a researcher at “Sova Centre” which focuses on extremism and violations of human rights in Russia. She says that the centre does not consider Belov a political prisoner and that members of the organisations which he and Dyomushkin led committed violent attacks in the past.

Promoting destabilisation abroad, preempting it at home

While the Kremlin was cracking down on the far right at home, in the West, it was seeking its support.

According to Shekhovtsov, the Kremlin launched efforts to establish relations with ultranationalist groups in Europe as early as 2008.

“[In 2008,] many in the Russian elite circles believed that Russia may have won the war with Georgia in military terms but it failed to win the information war and convince the West or the international community that Russia’s actions were justified,” he says.

Russian national and international media sought to feature Western commentators sympathetic to Russia’s actions in Georgia, but could not find any in the mainstream; the ones that would openly express support were mostly on the far right, explains Shekhovtsov.

In the following years, the Kremlin invested a lot of effort into nourishing ties with far-right groups and parties in the West. The Russian authorities would organise ultranationalist conferences, back media initiatives, and establish formal agreements with far-right parties.

Currently, the ruling United Russia party has established cooperation agreements with the Northern League in Italy and the Freedom Party in Austria. In 2014, the National Front in France borrowed nearly $13m in Russian bank loans.

Various other ultranationalist groups in the EU are said to have ties to Russia: from the Alternative for Germany (AfD) to Ataka Party in Bulgaria.

Shekhovtsov, who wrote a book on the subject, points out that Russian efforts to court Europe’s far right have not rendered major victories, such as the suspension of sanctions against Moscow in place since the annexation of Crimea. But the growing strength of far-right groups has had a destabilising effect across Europe.

In Germany, the AfD, which hardly managed to clear the five percent threshold in the 2013 elections, this year won 12.6 percent and is the third-largest party in the Bundestag after the September elections. Some commentators have attributed that success to Russian backing.

At home, the Kremlin preempted such a scenario.

“[Today] the anti-Putin far-right movement is extremely small. You cannot compare this to any other period of time in Russia [since 1991] where you would have such a weak [ultranationalist] movement,” says Shekhovtsov.

According to him, some ultranationalist groups have already changed strategy to accommodate the regime. At the same time, since 2014, a number of “patriotic” and ultra-Orthodox organisations have emerged which have also been accused of attacks, but not on minorities or migrants; their victims have mostly been opposition activists, like Navalny, and liberals.

“The classical Russian nationalism, in its ethnic form, is a thing of the past. There are new movements that are appearing now, which are connected with the Kremlin ideologically,” says Yudina. “The main thing for them is patriotism, the praise of our state, and adopting conservative, Orthodox values.”

Yudina says that in recent years hate attacks on minorities and migrants have decreased tenfold – from a few hundred in the late 2000s to a few dozen in 2016. Yet attacks on the LGBT community have persisted, as the new “patriotic” and ultra-Orthodox groups consider them “freaks”.

“All this scares me. This it seems to me will be the future. Aggressive Orthodox organisations will be getting stronger,” she says.

Follow Mariya Petkova on Twitter: @mkpetkova

The Trump-Russia Story Is Coming Together. Here’s How to Make Sense of It | By Bill Moyers, Steven Harper
 

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Совещание с постоянными членами Совета Безопасности
 

mikenova shared this story from Сайт Президента России: Все материалы.

Владимир Путин провёл совещание с постоянными членами Совета Безопасности.

Совещание с постоянными членами Совета Безопасности.Состоялся обстоятельный обмен мнениями в контексте прошедших на этой неделе международных контактов Президента, включая визиты зарубежных гостей и телефонные переговоры. Основное внимание уделено вопросам сирийского урегулирования с учётом итогов работы сочинской «тройки».

Затрагивались также текущие вопросы внутрироссийской социально-экономической повестки дня.

В совещании приняли участие Председатель Правительства Дмитрий Медведев, Председатель Совета Федерации Валентина Матвиенко, Председатель Государственной Думы Вячеслав Володин, Руководитель Администрации Президента Антон Вайно, секретарь Совета Безопасности Николай Патрушев, Министр внутренних дел Владимир Колокольцев, директор Федеральной службы безопасности Александр Бортников.

Flynn’s lawyers end communication with Trump team, signaling cooperation with Mueller: NY Times – Reuters
 

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The Guardian
Flynn’s lawyers end communication with Trump team, signaling cooperation with Mueller: NY Times
Reuters
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Lawyers for Michael Flynn, President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser, have told Trump’s legal team they can no longer discuss a probe into Russian meddling in the U.S. election, indicating Flynn may be cooperating …
Michael Flynn breaks ties with Trump lawyers over Russia investigation reportsThe Guardian
Michael Flynn May Be Cooperating With Robert Mueller’s Russia Probe: ReportHuffPost
Ex-Trump aide Flynn moves to cooperate with Russia probe reportThe Times of Israel
CBC.ca
all 142 news articles »
Russian Fancy Bear hackers’ UK link revealed
 

mikenova shared this story from BBC News – Home.

When Russia’s most notorious hackers hired servers from a UK-registered company, they left a trove of clues behind, the BBC has discovered.

The hackers used the computers to attack the German parliament, hijack traffic meant for a Nigerian government website and target Apple devices.

The company, Crookservers, had claimed to be based in Oldham for a time.

It says it acted swiftly to eject the hacking team – dubbed Fancy Bear – as soon as it learned of the problem.

Technical and financial records from Crookservers seen by the BBC suggest Fancy Bear had access to significant funds and made use of online financial services, some of which were later closed in anti-money laundering operations.

Fancy Bear – also known as APT28, Sofacy, Iron Twilight and Pawn Storm – has been linked to Russian intelligence.

The group played a key role in 2016’s attack on the US’s Democratic National Committee (DNC), according to security experts.

Indeed an internet protocol (IP) address that once belonged to a dedicated server hired via Crookservers was discovered in malicious code used in the breach

The spies who came in for milk

Early in 2012, Crookservers claimed to be based at the same address as a newsagent’s on an unassuming terraced road in Oldham, according to historical website registration records.

But after a short period, the listing switched to Pakistan. The BBC has seen no evidence the shop or its employees knew how the address was being used or that Crookservers had any real connection to the newsagent’s.

Crookservers was what is known as a server reseller. It was an entirely online business. The computers it effectively sublet were owned by another company based in France and Canada.

The BBC identified Crookservers’s operator as Usman Ashraf.

Social media and other online accounts suggest he was present in the Oldham area between 2010 and mid-2014. He now seems to be based in Pakistan.

Mr Ashraf declined to record an interview, but provided detailed answers to questions via email.

Despite his company’s name, he denied knowing he had had hackers as customers.

“We never know how a client is using the server,” he wrote.

When in 2015 he had been alerted to the hackers, he said, he had acted swiftly to close their accounts.

He said he had also carried out a “verification” process, culling 60-70% of the company’s accounts he had suspected of being misused.

“There is 0% compromise on abusive usage,” he said.

Joining the dots

Over three years, Fancy Bear rented computers through Crookservers, covering its tracks using bogus identities, virtual private networks and hard-to-trace payment systems.

Researchers at cyber-threat intelligence company Secureworks, who analysed information from Crookservers for the BBC, said it had helped them connect several Fancy Bear operations.

Senior security researcher Mike McLellan said the hackers had exhibited poor “tradecraft”.

One communication shows one hacker, using the pseudonym Roman Brecesku, had complained that his server had been “cracked”.

Crookservers was previously linked to an attack on the German parliament.

The server used to control the malware was hired through Crookservers by a hacker using the pseudonym Nikolay Mladenov who paid using Bitcoin and Perfect Money, according to records seen by the BBC.

The hacker used the server until June 2015, when it was deleted at Crookservers’s request following media reports of the attack.

This server’s IP address also appears in malware used to target some attendees at the Farnborough air show in 2014.

Fancy Bear malware used to attack a UK TV station and the DNC also contained this IP address, although the server was no longer in Fancy Bear’s control when these attacks occurred.

A financial account used by Mladenov was also used by another hacker, operating under the pseudonym Klaus Werner, to hire more computers through Crookservers.

One server hired by Werner received “redirected” traffic from a legitimate Nigerian government website, according to Secureworks analysis.

Apple attack

The financial account used by Mladenov and Werner was used by Fancy Bear hackers – including two using the names Bruno Labrousse and Roman Brecesku – to hire other servers from Crookservers.

One server and the email address used to hire it seem to have links to “advanced espionage” malware used to target iOS devices.

The malware was capable of turning on voice recording and stealing text messages.

Another email used to hire servers can be linked to an attack against Bulgaria’s State Agency for National Security.

But there are eight dedicated servers tied to the same financial information, whose use is unknown – suggesting there may be other Fancy Bear attacks that have not been publicly disclosed.

Follow the money

Fancy Bear spent at least $6,000 (£4,534) with Crookservers via a variety of services that offered an extra level of anonymity.

They included Bitcoin, Liberty Reserve and Perfect Money. Liberty Reserve was later closed after an international money laundering investigation.

The BBC asked a UK company called Elliptic, which specialises in identifying Bitcoin-related “illicit activity”, to analyse Fancy Bear’s Bitcoin payments.

Lead investigator Tom Robinson said his team had identified the wallet that had been the source of these funds. He said the bitcoins it contained were “worth around $100,000”.

Elliptic traced the source of some of the funds in that wallet to the digital currency exchange BTC-e.

In July, BTC-e was closed by the US authorities and its Russian alleged founder arrested in Greece accused of money laundering.

Although BTC-e is alleged to have been popular with Russian cyber-criminals, the BBC has no evidence its management was aware its clients included Fancy Bear.

Continuing operation

The financial and technical records link together several attacks previously tied to Fancy Bear.

And it is possible that following the financial trail further may yield additional revelations.

Crookservers closed on 10 October. Fancy Bear’s operations, however, have not.

The Dark Side of Allen Dulles: The Greatest Untold Story of American Power – U.S. History (2015) – YouTube
 

mikenova shared this story .


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1:33 PM 11/24/2017 – How Paul Manafort is connected to the Trump, Russia investigation – Fox News

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Russian propaganda on social media – Google News: How Russia Polices Yandex, Its Most Popular Search Engine – Motherboard
trump electorate – Google News: Democrats Won’t Beat Trump By Racing to the Left – Newsweek
Flynn may be moving to cooperate with Mueller’s Russia probe – Kansas City Star
organized crime and intelligence – Google News: Is collusion the future of global politics? – The Hill
Russian Intelligence services and international organized crime – Google News: Is collusion the future of global politics? – The Hill
Mueller May Have Flipped Michael Flynn – New York Magazine
morell on trump – Google News: Allies Wary of Sharing Intelligence Since Trump Betrayed Israeli Source – Atlantic Sentinel
Trump personality profile – Google News: Bob Woodward Talks Watergate, Restraint, Final Exam for Democracy at the U – Daily Utah Chronicle
Palmer Report: Hours after Michael Flynn reveals hes cutting a deal, Donald Trump makes suspicious phone call
Donald Trump | The Guardian: Trump reveals plan to address Middle East, play golf ‘quickly’, and restore jobs
Donald Trump – Google News: Donald Trump wants welfare reform, says ‘people are taking advantage of the system’ – PBS NewsHour
Putin and the Russian Mafia – Google News: New US sanctions to be directed at Putin personally, Piontkovsky says – The Ukrainian Weekly (press release)
putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Putin’s meddling in US elections backfiring at home and in United States, analyst observes – The Ukrainian Weekly (press release)
Palmer Report: Michael Flynn just ruined Mike Pences life
Elections 2016 Investigation – Google News: How Paul Manafort is connected to the Trump, Russia investigation – Fox News
Column: Collusion or not, Russian meddled in our election – The Island Now (blog)
Trump and the Russia investigation: What to know – Fox News
US elections and russia – Google News: Prague appeals court allows Russian hacker extradition to US – ABC News
social media in trump campaign – Google News: Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call – WPXI Pittsburgh
crime and terror – Google News: At least 235 killed, 130 wounded in terror attack in northern Sinai – The Times of Israel
Facebook’s New Tool to Check Impact of Russia Ads on Users – Zacks.com
Saudi Crown Prince Is Beating Trump, Putin And Taylor Swift In Time’s Person Of The Year Poll – Newsweek
Abedin – Google News: It’s Pretty Clear that Russia’s Meddling Went a Long Way to get Donald Trump Elected – ChicagoNow (blog)
Trump – Google News: Congress has handed Trump a historic presidential victory – CNBC

 

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Russian propaganda on social media – Google News: How Russia Polices Yandex, Its Most Popular Search Engine – Motherboard


Motherboard
How Russia Polices Yandex, Its Most Popular Search Engine
Motherboard
We will receive an answer and understand what to do next, he wrote. It is obvious that we will defend our mediaRussia is mad Google wants to keep propaganda off Google News, but it has ensured for nearly a decade that state media stays on Yandex.

 Russian propaganda on social media – Google News

How Paul Manafort is connected to the Trump, Russia investigation – Fox News


Fox News
How Paul Manafort is connected to the Trump, Russia investigation
Fox News
After months of investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, a federal grand jury indicted Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign manager, and his business associate Rick Gates on 12 counts in connection with Robert Mueller’s probe into Russia’s …
Why Trump should be nervous, but not panicking, after Michael Flynn’s lawyers cut off communicationWashington Post
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In his classic examination of the 1970s electorate, The Real Majority , Ben Wattenberg warned Democrats about the dangers of losing Middle America. By dispensing with Middle America, Wattenberg rightly predicted the McGovern coalition had doomed itself …

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Flynn may be moving to cooperate with Mueller’s Russia probe – Kansas City Star


Fox News
Flynn may be moving to cooperate with Mueller’s Russia probe
Kansas City Star
… a Justice Department investigation over his foreign business dealings even before Mueller was appointed as special counsel in May to investigate potential coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia to influence the 2016 presidential election.
Michael Flynn’s Lawyers Reportedly End Communications With President Trump’s TeamTIME
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organized crime and intelligence – Google News: Is collusion the future of global politics? – The Hill


The Hill
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Automation and artificial intelligence may also create new vulnerabilities that states will struggle to address, as large numbers of people especially youth may be left searching for livelihoods and survival strategies. Accordingly, organized 

 organized crime and intelligence – Google News

Russian Intelligence services and international organized crime – Google News: Is collusion the future of global politics? – The Hill


The Hill
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Recent allegations of collusion between Russian organized crime and American politicians are surprising. But perhaps … The 2011 White House Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime foresaw these risks, asserting that criminal networks 

 Russian Intelligence services and international organized crime – Google News

Mueller May Have Flipped Michael Flynn – New York Magazine


New York Magazine
Mueller May Have Flipped Michael Flynn
New York Magazine
The special counsel is also eyeing Flynn and his son, Michael Flynn Jr., for offenses far more severe. Last December, the Flynns allegedly took a meeting with agents of the Turkish government, where they discussed arranging the extrajudicial rendition 
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Allies Wary of Sharing Intelligence Since Trump Betrayed Israeli Source
Atlantic Sentinel
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Bob Woodward Talks Watergate, Restraint, Final Exam for Democracy at the U
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Woodward called that one of the keys to Trump’s personality, saying Trump’s wielding of fear as a motivator and former President Barack Obama’s method of using power are extreme opposites of one another. Giving another example of a time he was wrong 

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Palmer Report: Hours after Michael Flynn reveals hes cutting a deal, Donald Trump makes suspicious phone call

Donald Trump’s former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn signaled last night that he’s cutting a deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller (link), in a move which will certainly end up costing Trump his presidency, and may end up costing Trump his freedom. Instead of staging an unhinged Twitter meltdown this morning in response, Trump has made a highly suspicious move which appears to have been a response to Flynn’s reveal.

Here’s what Trump tweeted this morning: “Will be speaking to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey this morning about bringing peace to the mess that I inherited in the Middle East. I will get it all done, but what a mistake, in lives and dollars (6 trillion), to be there in the first place!” The timing here cannot be overlooked. Michael Flynn was on the payroll of the government of Turkey during the campaign and the transition period. One of the crimes he’s accused of is conspiring with Turkey to kidnap a cleric in Pennsylvania and ship him overseas. Now, just hours after Flynn decided to negotiate a plea deal against Trump, Trump is suddenly on the phone with the leader of Turkey. It gets stranger.

Last week Reza Zarrab, who is in U.S. federal prison and accused of conspiring with the government of Turkey to commit crimes against the United States, disappeared just as his trial was getting underway (link). It’s widely suspected that Robert Mueller has been using Zarrab as a cooperating witness in the grand jury proceedings against Michael Flynn. The government of Turkey keeps stating that it wants Zarrab back. Trump’s close ally Rudy Giuliani is facing legal trouble of his own for having tried to sabotage the Zarrab trial on Turkey’s behalf. Last week Giuliani mysteriously turned up in Ukraine (link), where he was spotted meeting with an ally of Trump’s campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who is currently under house arrest and awaiting trial for crimes against the United States.

So no one really knows what’s going on here, except for Robert Mueller, and maybe Michael Flynn. But now that Flynn is negotiating a deal with Mueller, Donald Trump is suddenly eager for an excuse to jump on the phone with the leader of Turkey, who is accused of having tried to hire Flynn to kidnap a guy. The plot continues to thicken but once Flynn starts spilling his guts to Mueller, it’ll all become much simpler going forward.

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Donald Trump | The Guardian: Trump reveals plan to address Middle East, play golf ‘quickly’, and restore jobs

Breaking with White House custom, president acknowledges he will find time for golf with Tiger Woods after phone call with Turkish president

Donald Trump broke with White House custom on Friday by admitting he was playing golf. He would fit in a quick round with Tiger Woods, he said, after seeking peace in the Middle East.

Related: Trump touts busy day of meetings then appears to play golf

Related: Trump hails ‘invisible’ plane in remarks to coast guard: ‘The enemy cannot see it’

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 Donald Trump | The Guardian

Donald Trump – Google News: Donald Trump wants welfare reform, says ‘people are taking advantage of the system’ – PBS NewsHour


PBS NewsHour
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New US sanctions to be directed at Putin personally, Piontkovsky says
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It is a mistake to over-personalize things in the Russian case, he suggests. Mr. Putin may leave office but the essence of thismafia system will not change as a result by that alone. But seizing the assets of Mr. Putin and other Russians held abroad 

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 Putin and the Russian Mafia – Google News

putin won US 2016 election – Google News: Putin’s meddling in US elections backfiring at home and in United States, analyst observes – The Ukrainian Weekly (press release)

Putin’s meddling in US elections backfiring at home and in United States, analyst observes
The Ukrainian Weekly (press release)
The Kremlin’s effort to affect the outcome of the 2016 U.S. presidential elections has provoked one consequence Moscow has long wanted the demoralization of the American elite but it is having other less welcome ones on both that elite and the 

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 putin won US 2016 election – Google News

Palmer Report: Michael Flynn just ruined Mike Pences life

Michael Flynn just signaled that he’s negotiating a deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, which will all but certainly seal the fate of Donald Trump. Flynn knows most or all of Trump’s secrets when it comes to Russia, and he’ll have to cough up every last one of those secrets as part of his plea deal. But Trump isn’t the only one who is suddenly seeing his political life flashing before him.

We still don’t know for sure why he did it, but Vice President Mike Pence has been covering for Michael Flynn for at least the past year. Congress notified Pence in November that Flynn was criminally on the take from the government of Turkey, yet Pence did nothing to prevent Flynn from being appointed National Security Adviser. Pence then went on national television and lied about knowing of Flynn’s foreign entanglements.

Was Mike Pence trying to protect himself because he was also a part of the Trump-Russia-Turkey conspiracy, or was Pence merely protecting Michael Flynn in order to keep his administration from falling apart? Now that Flynn is squealing, we’re about to find out the answer. Even if Pence wasn’t in on the original criminal conspiracy, he appears to have committed obstruction of justice by trying to cover it up after the fact. That alone will be enough to make it difficult for Pence to inherit the presidency once Trump is ousted. Even if Pence does manage to assume the office, his presidency will be instantly awash in scandal, and it’ll be solely defined by that scandal for as long as it lasts.

So even as most of the headlines right now are justifiably focused on how Michael Flynn’s deal will impact Donald Trump, let’s keep one eye on the details of Flynn’s confession as it’ll seal Mike Pence’s fate as well.

The post Michael Flynn just ruined Mike Pence’s life appeared first on Palmer Report.

 Palmer Report

Elections 2016 Investigation – Google News: How Paul Manafort is connected to the Trump, Russia investigation – Fox News


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 Elections 2016 Investigation – Google News

Column: Collusion or not, Russian meddled in our election – The Island Now (blog)

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If some obscure outside group pays for its ads with Russian rubles isn’t that a hint that someone out there was trying to poison the election process and divide us into two bitter camps? If I place an advertisement on social media accusing a politician 

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Trump and the Russia investigation: What to know – Fox News


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Before he handed over the White House to Trump, former President Barack Obama sanctioned Russia for its alleged involvement in the election a move that would eventually come back to dismantle one of Trump’s senior aides. Trump’s eldest son, Donald …
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may cooperate with Robert Mueller’s Russia investigationPBS NewsHour
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US elections and russia – Google News: Prague appeals court allows Russian hacker extradition to US – ABC News


RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
Prague appeals court allows Russian hacker extradition to US
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The U.S. has accused Russia of coordinating the theft and disclosure of emails from the Democratic National Committee and other institutions and individuals in the U.S. to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential electionRussia has vigorously
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 US elections and russia – Google News

social media in trump campaign – Google News: Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call – WPXI Pittsburgh


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Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call
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Trump railed during his campaign about the ongoing conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq but has boasted about progress under his watch in recent months. Trump has … Trump’s tweet was in response to one from his social media chief, Dan Scavino. Scavino …

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 social media in trump campaign – Google News

crime and terror – Google News: At least 235 killed, 130 wounded in terror attack in northern Sinai – The Times of Israel


The Times of Israel
At least 235 killed, 130 wounded in terror attack in northern Sinai
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Ahmed Abul Gheit, head of the Arab League which is based in Cairo, condemned the terrifying crime, his spokesman said in a statement. The Islamic State group’s Egypt branch has killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers, and also civilians accused of …
Egypt mosque terror attack kills dozens after ‘terrorists detonate explosives and shoot victims with machine guns’Birmingham Mail
Jordan denounces terror attack on Egyptian mosquePetra News Agency
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 crime and terror – Google News

Facebook’s New Tool to Check Impact of Russia Ads on Users – Zacks.com


Zacks.com
Facebook’s New Tool to Check Impact of Russia Ads on Users
Zacks.com
In a blog post, the social media giant said, It is important that people understand how foreign actors tried to sow division and mistrust using Facebook before and after the 2016 US election. That’s why as we have discovered information, we have 

and more »

Saudi Crown Prince Is Beating Trump, Putin And Taylor Swift In Time’s Person Of The Year Poll – Newsweek


Newsweek
Saudi Crown Prince Is Beating Trump, Putin And Taylor Swift In Time’s Person Of The Year Poll
Newsweek
Saudi Arabia’s maverick Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, looks set to beat President Donald Trump, Russian President Vladimir Putin and a bevy of other high-profile figures in Time Magazine’s Person of the Year reader poll. With only two weeks to the …

and more »

Abedin – Google News: It’s Pretty Clear that Russia’s Meddling Went a Long Way to get Donald Trump Elected – ChicagoNow (blog)


ChicagoNow (blog)
It’s Pretty Clear that Russia’s Meddling Went a Long Way to get Donald Trump Elected
ChicagoNow (blog)
He announced that some emails from Hillary Clinton to her close confidante and aid, Huma Abedin were forwarded toAbedin’s husband, Anthony Weiner. There could not have been a better timed or more salacious revelation for TrumpRussia. Weiner, in …

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Trump – Google News: Congress has handed Trump a historic presidential victory – CNBC


CNBC
Congress has handed Trump a historic presidential victory
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Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley is giving President Trump yet another major victory on judicial nominations. None of this would have been possible without Harry Reid’s decision to kill the filibuster. The result is Trump will get to 

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 Trump – Google News


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6:29 AM 11/24/2017 – Flynn’s lawyers end communication with Trump team, signaling cooperation with Mueller: NY Times – Reuters

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Robert Muellers persistence pays off as he finally gets his man
Flynn Lawyers Are Said to Stop Cooperation With Trump Legal Team – Bloomberg
‘Keep coming at me guys!!!’: Donald Trump Jr. meets Russia scrutiny with defiance – Chicago Tribune

Flynn’s lawyers end communication with Trump team, signaling cooperation with Mueller: NY Times – Reuters

Michael Flynn may now be cooperating with Russia investigation – CBS News
Here comes Donald Trumps ultimate meltdown
Michael Flynn breaks ties with Trump lawyers over Russia investigation reports
Michael Flynn breaks ties with Trump lawyers over Russia investigation reports – The Guardian
Here comes Donald Trumps ultimate meltdown
Leaders gather for EU Eastern Partnership summit – Digital Journal
Republicans are repeating a reckless cycle – Washington Post
Congress must investigate Trump’s alleged sexual misconduct – Washington Post
Former Trump Advisor Flynn May Be Cooperating With FBI on Russia Probe, NYT Reports – Haaretz
Rudy Giuliani – Google News: Former city schools boss says he would be open to top CUNY post – New York Daily News
Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr, and Jared Kushner are all now completely screwed
Rudy Giuliani – Google News: US trial of gold trader sparks concern, anger in Turkey – Digital Journal
US trial of gold trader sparks concern, anger in Turkey – Digital Journal
Michael Flynn’s Lawyers Reportedly End Communications With President Trump’s Team – TIME
Leaders gather for EU Eastern Partnership summit – Channel NewsAsia
South Korea looks to break down North’s information blockade – Financial Times
Michael Flynn’s Lawyers Reportedly End Communications With President Trump’s Team – TIME
“*Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr, and Jared Kushner are all now completely screwed
Flynn legal team no longer discussing special counsel Russia probe with Trump lawyers – ABC News
This is the part where Jared Kushner squeals like a pig and Donald Trump goes down
Donald Trump Jr. keeps up jabs at ‘liberal imperialists’ as Russian investigation gets hotter – Press Herald

 

Saved Stories – None
Robert Muellers persistence pays off as he finally gets his man

Three weeks ago, Special Counsel Robert Mueller began his first high profile arrests in Donald Trump’s Russia scandal. Since that time he hasn’t arrested anyone, at least that we know of, leading to questions of whether he had hit a wall. In reality, the details have given away that he’s been consistently plugging away behind the scenes and as of tonight, he’s finally getting his man.Attorneys for Michael Flynn have taken steps to formally separate themselves from attorneys for Donald Trump, according to the New York Times (link) which means that Flynn is cutting a deal. This essentially confirms what we’ve come to suspect about Mueller: he arrested the uncooperative Paul Manafort in order to make an example out of him, and scare the other Trump-Russia players into cutting deals before they became the next to face house arrest or worse. As far as cooperating witnesses go, Flynn is arguably the biggest catch Mueller could land.

Robert Mueller went the extra mile to get to Michael Flynn. Two weeks ago, stories surfaced in major outlets confirming that Mueller had enough evidence to arrest Flynn and his son on various severe charges. But simply arresting Flynn was never Mueller’s goal. Instead, Mueller was attempting to prove to Flynn that his life (and his son’s life) were over unless he cut a deal. It’s why Mueller circled back on the newly uncovered claim that Turkey offered Flynn a $15 million bribe as part of a kidnapping plot. It’s why Mueller interfered with the trial of Reza Zarrab this week, presumably in order to use Zarrab to prove to Flynn that he had no way out of this.

Michael Flynn can now give up the biggest secrets of the Trump campaign, including the Trump-Russia collusion meetings he participated in during the election cycle. He can directly incriminate Donald Trump himself in crimes against the United States. Robert Mueller’s persistence has paid off, and now he’s finally getting his man. Contribute to Palmer Report

The post Robert Mueller’s persistence pays off as he finally gets his man appeared first on Palmer Report.

Flynn Lawyers Are Said to Stop Cooperation With Trump Legal Team – Bloomberg