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Posts tagged ‘Russia’

The United States Of Hysterics


Written by A.J. Rice on March 9, 2020

URL of the original posting site: https://clashdaily.com/2020/03/the-united-states-of-hysterics/

The Coronavirus isn’t the only thing that’s spreading.

Hysterical leftists can’t let go of the delusion that Donald Trump is president because of sinister machinations by unspecified Russians – the same Russians that Sleepy Joe Biden believes are messing with his electioneering.

Biden – who got badly clipped in the Iowa caucuses by Bernie Sanders, told Face the Nation that “The Russians don’t want me to be the nominee…” because “they like Bernie,” the Fidel-snuggler from Vermont.

Channeling his best third-person Tricky Dick, Biden added:

“They spent a lot of money on bots on Facebook and they’ve been taken down saying Biden is a bad guy. They don’t want Biden running… No one’s helping me to try to get the nomination.”

But the Russians apparently changed their minds. Bernie got clipped on Tuesday, losing badly to Sleepy Joe – who sometimes seems to forget that it’s 2020, not 1920. People don’t play phonographs for their kids anymore – and Russia hasn’t been the Soviet Union for going on 30 years.

Blaming this — blaming everything — on the Russians is becoming a kind of lunatic gestalt for the coming-apart-at-the-wheels left; a comforting explanation for political failure in 2016 and, far worse, pushback on the cultural front. The left doesn’t want to believe that Americans are becoming tired of Wokeness, of being accused by hysterics of phobias (homo, Islamo, you-name-it-o) as a technique to shout down disagreement by literally shouting.

This condition was first diagnosed in 1876 by French physician Jean-Martin Charcot who named it — literally — after women’s reproductive equipment. His patient, a teenage girl named Louise Augustine Gleizes — had been committed to the Salpetriere hospital for women due to serial fits and hallucinations about swarms of black, demonic rats.

In 2020 she would be working at MSNBC.

Today, it’s old men like Biden — and older men like Sanders — who suffer from hysteria, triggered by swarms of real people wearing MAGA hats. They literally cannot accept that tens of millions of Americans don’t accept their message of perpetual grievance, failure, and despair; that they are hurtling toward another electoral loss nine months from now.

How can it be?

It must be the Russians!

Of course, there’s not only no evidence it is the Russians — it’s hard to see how it could be the Russians.

The hysterical allegations leveled against Trump by not-just-Biden and not-just-Bernie but the entirety of the leftist Greek Chorus is that — somehow — Boris Badinov (i.e., Vladimir Putin) did what Democrats actually have done in the past — jimmy the votes. As in West Virginia back in 1960.

And against their own in 2016.

The Kennedy campaign poured so much money into the ’60 West Virginia Primary that Jack Kennedy publicly said, “I just received the following wire from my generous Daddy; Dear Jack, Don’t buy a single vote more than is necessary. I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay for a landslide.”

There were also allegations of outright voter fraud, including corpses voting and the living voting twice.

Bernie is bitter about 2016 because he was denied the nomination last time – but not by Trump. And not by the Russians.

But by Hillary — who used her leverage to deny Bernie what the Russians couldn’t: The nomination he was supposed to have gotten then — and may not get now. Because of the voters, this time.

Because the Russians can’t jimmy the votes — as Hillary did, in favor of herself over Bernie, as became infamously public when former DNC Chair Donna Brazile came forward with allegations that the Clinton Machine rigged the Dem’s nominating process back in 2016. Or at least, tilted the table in favor of Hillary’s nomination, by giving control over internal decisions such as the hiring of key DNC staffers.

“I found proof (of nomination monkey-business) and it broke my heart,” she said.

A stark contrast to the hysterical allegations about Russians. They don’t have access, for one — and no one (even the hysterics on the left) has alleged that they did. Posting memes on Facebook isn’t the same thing as tampering with the ballot box — a conflation that Democrats have been trying to sell since the lost the 2016 presidential race.

We now live in an era of perpetual hysteria where the boogeymen of the media’s psychosis leads the evening news.

Don’t expect the 2020 election cycle to alter this trend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR” 
A.J. Rice

A.J. Rice is CEO of Publius PR, a premier communications firm in Washington D.C. Rice is a brand manager, star-whisperer and auteur media influencer, who has produced or promoted Laura Ingraham, Judge Jeanine Pirro, Monica Crowley, Charles Krauthammer, Alan Dershowitz, Roger L. Simon, Steve Hilton, Victor Davis Hanson, and many others. Find out more at publiuspr.com.

Democrats’ Russia Strategy to Oust Bernie Sanders


Posted By Kevin Jackson |

#TeamKJ, #kevinjackson, Bernie

Russian collusion, rinse and repeat.

The idea that Russia is helping Bernie Sanders proves more desperation from Democrats. Only this time Democrats are desperate against Bernie Sanders than they are President Trump.

In 2016, Democrats told Bernie Sanders they don’t want him. They plotted against him in every way possible, finally just paying off the old Socialist. But when you pay off political terrorists, you must know they will return for another pay off. You know Democrats would love to have the Clintons just “Seth Rich” old Bernie. But they can’t. So Sanders will get another payday…a BIG payday. Unless the Democrats can successfully do to him what they couldn’t do to Trump.

Enter Vlad Putin.

According to NPR, U.S. officials have warned Sen. Bernie Sanders that Russia is trying to help him win the Democratic nomination.

So it begins. Democrats decided to tie Sanders to the Russians.

And how convenient that Old Bern is a commie. Also, he can’t deny his communist ties, either.

Politico reported on a visit Sanders made to Russia:

It’s 1988 and newlywed Bernie Sanders is in the Soviet Union with his wife, Jane, handing out gifts to the mayor of a midsized city they’ve befriended. The mood is festive as the two bestow the items: A Beatles album, a red “Bernie for Burlington” button, “delicious Vermont candy” and a tape of tunes Sanders recorded himself with fellow artists from Vermont, among other goodies.

“I have met many fine mayors in the United States,” Sanders says, “but I want to say that one of the nicest mayors I’ve ever met is the mayor of Yaroslavl.”

At another point, a member of Sanders’ delegation hands a Russian woman a small American flag.

“If you’re wondering what’s wrong with capitalism, it’s made in Hong Kong,” he jokes. “Sorry about that.”

The scene is part of 3½ hours of raw, never publicly seen footage of the trip Sanders took to the Soviet Union that year — his “honeymoon.” POLITICO viewed the tapes this week, along with a forgotten hourlong episode of a TV show created by Sanders that featured the same trip, at the offices of a Vermont government access channel.

For Democrats who really want to threaten Sanders, understand that he offered bribes: Earlier this year, two minutes of the long-lost videos went viral when a staffer at Chittenden County’s Channel 17 posted a compilation of the station’s archival footage online. The clip featured a shirtless Sanders and other Americans singing “This Land Is Your Land” to their hosts after relaxing in a sauna. A few minutes later, Sanders doled out the gifts to his Russian friends with a towel wrapped around his waist.

Did Sanders give out gifts in anticipation of his presidential run? Adam Schiff: “IS THIS THING ON?”

Next however is the most intriguing part of the story. And Sanders and team wanted to set up a “sister city” relationship with America’s #1 enemy:

But that’s only the beginning. The hours of footage include a scene of Sanders sitting with his delegation at a table under a portrait of Vladimir Lenin. Sanders can also be heard extolling the virtues of Soviet life and culture, even as he acknowledges some of their shortcomings. There are flashes of humor, too, such as his host warning the American guests not to cross the KGB, or else.

The video also paints a fuller picture of why Sanders ventured to the land of America’s No. 1 enemy in the midst of the Cold War, the anti-war idealism that fueled his journey, and what he found when he got there.

Over the course of 10 days, Sanders, who was then the mayor of Burlington, and his dozen-member delegation traveled to three cities: Moscow, Yaroslavl and Leningrad, now known as St. Petersburg. Their goal was to establish a “sister city” relationship with Yaroslavl, a community along the Volga River home to about 500,000 people. At the time, the Soviet Union was beginning to open itself to the world, if only slightly — and Sanders was a self-described socialist with an unusually large interest in foreign affairs for a mayor.

Why would Russia want to help Bernie Sanders? He’s doing well all on his own.

Bernie Sanders knows he can never get a plurality of Democrat voters. But he can cause a ruckus and get more ruples for himself.

Some say that’s Russia’s strategy. To disrupt the election. However, if Russia wants chaos in the 2020 election, all they need to do is…nothing. Look at the current chaos in the Democratic Party. Their debates range from slave auctions to close-out sales. The Democrats promise everything to everybody, as they count their Negroes, Mexicans, gays, and women. Democrats are people-ranchers, and every demographic is potential cattle.

Bernie Sanders is a horrible people-rancher. He attracts youth and radicals; people who have no real idea of life, and thus fall prey to his socialist tropes. So Sanders will never, repeat never appeal to the average working-class American. Nor will Sanders appeal to most Americans.

Democrats know this, and they hope the Russian collusion narrative actually works this time. At least they target a real anti-American communist this go-round.

IG Report Reveals Steele Funneled Claims Through John McCain After FBI Dropped Him


Written by Aaron Klein | 

URL of the original posting site: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/12/26/ig-report-reveals-steele-funneled-claims-through-john-mccain-after-fbi-dropped-him/

In this Aug. 25, 2009 file photo, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., holds a healthcare town hall meeting in Sun City, Ariz. McCain’s family says the Arizona senator has chosen to discontinue medical treatment for brain cancer. (AP Photo/Matt York) AP Photo/Matt York

Late Senator John McCain provided disgraced former FBI chief James Comey with five separate reports from Christopher Steele that the FBI didn’t previously possess related to unsubstantiated allegations of collusion between Russia and President Trump’s 2016 campaign, the Justice Department’s recent Inspector General report revealed.

There have long been questions about why it was necessary for McCain to pass Steele’s anti-Trump dossier to Comey on December 9, 2016, several weeks after the November 2016 presidential election. By then, Steele had already met numerous times with FBI agents to provide them with his controversial reports. Steele, however, was terminated as an FBI source in the fall of 2016 because he spoke to the news media.

The IG report discloses that McCain gave five new Steele reports to Comey that the FBI did not previously possess, showing that McCain served as a conduit for Steele’s information to reach the FBI even after the British ex-spy was formally cut off as an FBI source.

It is not clear whether McCain knew at the time that Steele had previously been terminated as an FBI source.

The IG report also verifies that a McCain aid obtained the Steele reports directly from Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson, meaning that when McCain transferred the anti-Trump charges to Comey he had to have known that the material originated with a firm that specializes in controversial opposition tactics. Fusion GPS was paid for its anti-Trump work by Trump’s primary political opponents, namely Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) via the Perkins Coie law firm.

States the IG report:

Several weeks later, on December 9, 2016, Senator John McCain provided Comey with a collection of 16 Steele election reports, 5 of which Steele had not given the FBI. McCain had obtained these reports from a staff member at the McCain Institute. The McCain Institute staff member had met with Steele and later acquired the reports from Simpson.

The unnamed McCain staff member is known to be David J. Kramer, who also infamously provided BuzzFeed with the Steele dossier.

BuzzFeed published Steele’s full dossier on January 10, 2017 setting off a firestorm of news media coverage about the document.

Prior to his death, McCain admitted to personally handing the dossier to Comey but he refused repeated requests for comment about whether he had a role in providing the dossier to BuzzFeed, including numerous inquiries sent to his office by this reporter.

In his book published last year, McCain maintained he had an “obligation” to pass the dossier charges against Trump to Comey and he would even do it again. “Anyone who doesn’t like it can go to hell,” McCain exclaimed.

Aaron Klein is Breitbart’s Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio.” Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.

Written with research by Joshua Klein.

Exclusive — Fake News Echo Chamber: New York Times Prints Lies by Adam Schiff Witness Made in Secret Testimony


Authored by Matthew Boyle | Washington, D.C.

URL of the original posting site: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/10/24/exclusive-fake-news-echo-chamber-new-york-times-prints-lies-by-adam-schiff-witness-made-in-secret-testimony/

The New York Times building is seen on September 6, 2018 in New York. – A furious Donald Trump called September 5, 2018 for the unmasking of an anonymous senior official who wrote in the New York Times that top members of his administration were undermining the president to curb …ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty 

The New York Times on Wednesday published what would have been a major story on White House National Security Council (NSC) aide Kash Patel—if only it had been true.

The story, which relies on leaks from Democrats conducting the “impeachment inquiry” into President Donald Trump of testimony by one witness who had no firsthand knowledge of the allegations she was making, claims Patel had provided President Trump with documents on Ukraine and met with the president about them.

Citing as its sources “people briefed on the matter,” the Times’ Julian Barnes, Adam Goldman, and Nicholas Fandos wrote that Patel was referred to by President Trump as “one of his top Ukraine policy specialists” and that President Trump “wanted to discuss related documents with him.” The Times reporters claimed that Patel’s NSC and White House colleagues “grew alarmed” over all this.

Later in the Times piece, it became clear where exactly this allegation came from—Fiona Hill, a former Trump administration Russia hand, whom the Democrats have been relying on for testimony in the impeachment inquiry. Hill testified earlier this month in the secret room in the basement of the Capitol building from which Democrats have been running their private impeachment proceedings.

Barnes, Goldman, and Fandos wrote:

Fiona Hill, the National Security Council’s former senior director for Eurasian and Russian affairs, testified to House investigators last week that she believed Mr. Patel was improperly becoming involved in Ukraine policy and was sending information to Mr. Trump, some of the people said. Ms. Hill grew alarmed earlier this year when an aide from the White House executive secretary’s office told her that Mr. Trump wanted to talk to Mr. Patel and identified him as the National Security Council’s ‘Ukraine director,’ a position held by one of Ms. Hill’s deputies. The aide said Mr. Trump wanted to meet with Mr. Patel about documents he had received on Ukraine. Ms. Hill responded by asking who Mr. Patel was. While the aide from the executive secretary’s office did not state explicitly that Mr. Patel sent the Ukraine documents to Mr. Trump, Ms. Hill understood that to be the implication, according to a person familiar with her testimony.

As the Times notes, if true, this would mean there were multiple backchannels for Trump on Ukraine matters—the other being through his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and Giuliani’s associates—and it would make it appear as though Trump was up to something by circumventing established channels for such policy, even though the president as the nation’s chief executive officer is well within his rights to do that.

But the problem with the Times story, and its sources that appear to be leaks from Democrats of Hill’s testimony, is that the entire premise is untrue, sources familiar with Patel’s meetings with the president told Breitbart News. Since the Times published its story, Breitbart News has spoken with a dozen sources including current White House officials, then-current-now-former White House officials, congressional officials familiar with the investigation and the meetings Patel had with President Trump, and others in the know about what actually happened and discovered that Patel’s meetings with President Trump had “absolutely nothing,” in the words of one source, to do with Ukraine whatsoever.

One now-former White House official confirmed that President Trump did in fact meet with Patel on a number of occasions, though it’s unclear if these were one-on-one meetings or there were others present.

A source close to House GOP leadership told Breitbart News that Patel’s meetings with the president were focused on domestic national security matters, and that Ukraine did not come up at all.

That source said of the Times story:

This story is complete nonsense. The meeting was arranged at the suggestion of multiple GOP congressmen and senators to discuss domestic national security issues that Kash has specific knowledge and unique expertise in. This meeting had absolutely nothing to do with Ukraine.

A second well-placed source familiar with Patel’s interactions with the president told Breitbart News that the Times story that relies on Hill’s testimony—leaked by Democrats—is “100 percent false.”

“The New York Times story is 100 percent false,” this source familiar with Patel’s interactions with Trump told Breitbart News. “Kash did not discuss Ukraine with Trump in any meeting, nor did he discuss any Ukraine-related documents with him. The Democrats involved in the impeachment interviews were obviously tipped off that Fiona Hill would invent some story like this if asked about Kash, and that’s why they brought up his name to her, then they leaked the exchange to their lackeys at the Times.”

Hill, Breitbart News has learned, was asked a number questions about Patel by the Democrats during her testimony, and a source in the room said her “responses appeared scripted,” suggesting that there was some coordination between Hill or her lawyers and the Democrats on Capitol Hill before her appearance.

Then, as has happened with so much more that has gone on in the secretive U.S. Capitol basement room in which House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) is running the impeachment proceedings away from public view, this information was leaked to the Times and weaponized against the president and his administration—the actual truth and facts be damned.

This episode paints a broader and darker picture of what exactly Schiff and his team are doing in the secretive room and raises bigger questions about why Schiff is not holding these hearings in public.

The system Democrats have set up basically goes as such: They bring witnesses in for testimony and depositions and transcribed interviews for hours on end to a private room known as a Secure Compartmentalized Information Facility (SCIF)–behind closed doors and away from the press and public.

They allow no lawyers for the administration inside to challenge anything, present facts in defense of the president, or hear what’s happening down there. Then, Schiff and his team control the information gathered and collected down there—not allowing the minority sufficient access to it.

After that, Schiff, his team, and other Democrats leak the most damaging information to the media—usually out of context, and without the full story—in order to create a public narrative that the president is in serious trouble.

Then it takes a couple days at least for Republicans to get the full truth out about each of these instances to turn around the narrative and expose each “fact” the Democrats are putting forward as flawed. This latest example saw the Times story on Hill’s testimony as the official public record on this matter, until now, for about a full day.

Technically speaking, Hill did make these claims that the Times reported in her testimony—but the veracity of them was never checked by the Democrats who gathered said testimony then leaked it to the New York Times for publication.

The Times also did not check their veracity, even though the first source who spoke to Breitbart News, the one close to House GOP leadership who confirmed Hill’s claims were false, noted that Hill’s inaccurate claims were reproduced uncritically by the Times based upon Democrat leaks. And the Times, this source said, as an institution was aware of the fact that Hill’s claims were false because a separate White House correspondent at the Times was aware of Patel’s meetings with the president at the time of said meetings well before Hill’s testimony happened and well before Democrats even launched an impeachment inquiry—and that this Times reporter was aware that the content had nothing to do with Ukraine.

“What’s particularly shameful is that at least one New York Times White House reporter was told about this meeting in advance off the record, and knew what this meeting was about—and that it was not about Ukraine—but they printed this fake story anyway,” the source close to House GOP leadership told Breitbart News.

Part of the reason the media and the Democrats wanted to smear Patel and attempt to tie him into the impeachment madness, the second source who was familiar with Patel’s conversations with the president said, is because Patel was critical of exposing the failures of the narrative surrounding the previous attempts by the so-called “deep state” to entangle Trump in a scandal on the Russia narrative.

“The story is a lazy hit piece based entirely on rumors and purported second-hand and third-hand information,” that source told Breitbart News. “Both the Times and the Democrats have a vendetta against Kash because he helped blow up their three-year investment in the Russia hoax.”

In fact, this is evident by the fact that the Times story actually opens with a recounting of Patel’s history as an aide on the House Intelligence Committee when Republicans were in the majority and his role in exposing what has become known as “Spygate.”

Barnes, Goldman, and Fandos wrote to open their article, before they even got into the substance of the new but false allegations that Hill leveled against Patel over meetings with the president:

When Kashyap Patel was an aide to the House Intelligence Committee in the first years of the Trump administration, he played a key role in helping Republicans try to undermine the Russia investigation, writing a memo that accused law enforcement officials of abusing their power. The memo, which consumed Washington for weeks, was widely dismissed as a biased argument of cherry-picked facts. But it galvanized President Trump’s allies and made Mr. Patel a hero among them. After Republicans ceded control of Congress this year, he landed on Mr. Trump’s National Security Council staff.

Later in the story, the Times reporters further explain Patel’s role in exposing the Russia scandal as a hoax designed to harm the president.

“Mr. Patel was previously best known as a lead author of the politically charged memo released early last year accusing the F.B.I. and Justice Department leaders of abusing their power in the early stages of the Russia investigation,” Barnes, Goldman, and Fandos wrote. “Mr. Patel worked at the time as an investigator for the House Intelligence Committee under Representative Devin Nunes of California, who ran the panel when Republicans had control of the chamber. Mr. Patel’s efforts to discredit the Russia investigation made him a minor celebrity in conservative circles but a divisive figure on Capitol Hill.”

Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


A.F. Branco Cartoon – Judgment Day

Former FBI Director James Comey is guilty of violating DOJ and FBI rules of conduct will his punishment be just a slap on the wrist?

Comey GuiltyPolitical cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2019
More A.F. Branco Cartoons at The Daily Torch.

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A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, the great El Rushbo, and has had his toons tweeted by President Trump.

Klein: James Comey Peddling Falsehoods with ‘Questions’ for Mueller


Written by Aaron Klein | 

URL of the original posting site: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/07/23/klein-james-comey-peddling-falsehoods-with-questions-for-mueller/

This combination photo shows President Donald Trump speaking during a roundtable discussion on tax policy in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., on April 5, 2018, left, and former FBI director James Comey speaking during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington on June 8, 2017. Trump fired off …
AP Photo/Evan Vucci, left, and Andrew Harnik
 

NEW YORK — Disgraced former FBI Director James Comey has been making the media rounds peddling a list of “questions” that he compiled and published on the Lawfare blog in a posting titled, “What I Would Ask Robert Mueller.”

Comey’s “questions” are deceptively framed in a manner clearly aimed at attempting to perpetuate the Russia collusion conspiracy even though Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s extensive report found no evidence of any collusion or coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Below are the obvious answers to Comey’s “questions” on Russia, with the answers coming from Mueller’s report itself in addition to other documentation.

1 – Did you find that there were a series of contacts between the Trump campaign and individuals with ties to the Russian government?

Perhaps Comey failed to read Mueller’s actual report, which concluded (emphasis added):

The investigation did not identify evidence that any U.S. persons knowingly or intentionally coordinated with the IRA’s interference operation.

In particular, the investigation examined whether these contacts involved or resulted in coordination or a conspiracy with the Trump Campaign and Russia, including with respect to Russia providing assistance to the Campaign in exchange for any sort of favorable treatment in the future. Based on the available information, the investigation did not establish such coordination.

Comey should also refer to the following section of the Mueller report, which related that Russia didn’t even know how to contact the incoming Trump administration after the billionaire mogul won the 2016 election:

As soon as news broke that Trump had been elected President, Russian government officials and prominent Russian businessmen began trying to make inroads into the new Administration. They appeared not to have preexisting contacts and struggled to connect with senior officials around the President-Elect. As explained below, those efforts entailed both official contact through the Russian Embassy in the United States and outreaches — sanctioned at high levels of the Russian government — through business rather than political contacts.

The Mueller report details the hilarity of Russian President Vladimir Putin having trouble reaching Trump’s team to offer simple congratulations:

At approximately 3 a.m. on election night, Trump Campaign press secretary Hope Hicks received a telephone call on her personal cell phone from a person who sounded foreign but was calling from a number with a DC area code. Although Hicks had a hard time understanding the person, she could make out the words “Putin call.” Hicks told the caller to send her an email.

The following morning, on November 9, 2016, Sergey Kuznetsov, an official at the Russian Embassy to the United States, emailed Hicks from his Gmail address with the subject line, “Message from Putin.” Attached to the email was a message from Putin, in both English and Russian, which Kuznetsov asked Hicks to convey to the President-Elect. In the message, Putin offered his congratulations to Trump for his electoral victory, stating he “look[ ed] forward to working with [Trump] on leading Russian-American relations out of crisis.”

Hicks forwarded the email to [Jared] Kushner, asking, “Can you look into this? Don’t want to get duped but don’t want to blow off Putin!” Kushner stated in Congressional testimony that he believed that it would be possible to verify the authenticity of the forwarded email through the Russian Ambassador, whom Kushner had previously met in April 2016. Unable to recall the Russian Ambassador’s name, Kushner emailed Dimitri Simes of CNI, whom he had consulted previously about Russia, see Volume I, Section IV.A.4, supra, and asked, “What is the name of Russian ambassador?” Kushner forwarded Simes’s response — which identified Kislyak by name — to Hicks. After checking with Kushner to see what he had learned, Hicks conveyed Putin’s letter to transition officials. Five days later, on November 14, 2016, Trump and Putin spoke by phone in the presence of Transition Team members, including incoming National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.

Comey’s team further cited Petr Aven, a Russian national in charge of Alfa-Bank, Russia’s largest commercial bank. Mueller’s report states: “Aven also testified that Putin spoke of the difficulty faced by the Russian government in getting in touch with the incoming Trump Administration. According to Aven, Putin indicated that he did not know with whom formally to speak and generally did not know the people around the President-Elect.”

If Comey really wants to get into the weeds, he may do well to review the particulars of each instance of contact between members or surrogates of the campaign and individuals affiliated with Russia as thoroughly documented in Mueller’s report. In each case and with no exception, Mueller found no evidence of wrongdoing.

2 – In particular, did you find that a Trump foreign policy adviser learned that the Russians had dirt on Hillary Clinton in the form of thousands of emails?

This will be answered together with Comey’s next “question.”

3 – Did you find that the Trump foreign policy adviser said the Trump campaign had received indications from the Russian government that it could assist the campaign through the anonymous release of information damaging to candidate Clinton?

Once again, Comey is trying to stir things up based on questions that were already answered inside Mueller’s report.

A reminder: as referenced above, Mueller concluded, “The investigation did not identify evidence that any U.S. persons knowingly or intentionally coordinated with the IRA’s interference operation.”

Anyway, Comey here is referring to one episode involving George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy panel adviser tangentially involved with Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.

The Justice Department’s filing against Papadopoulos documents that he was allegedly told by Joseph Mifsud, a Maltese academic plagued by allegations of suspicious associations, that on a trip to Moscow “he (the Professor) learned that the Russians had obtained ‘dirt’ on then-candidate Clinton.”

Former Australian diplomat Alexander Downer later transmitted to the U.S. that he was told about the alleged Russian “dirt” on Clinton by Papadopoulos, reportedly leading to the start of the FBI’s controversial probe of Trump’s campaign under Comey’s leadership at the agency.

No evidence has been presented that Papadopoulos spoke about emails at his meeting with Downer or that Misfurd mentioned emails. But Papadopoulos later described to the FBI that “They [the Russians] have dirt on her”; “the Russians had emails of Clinton”; “they have thousands of emails.”

The Justice Department concluded, “No documentary evidence, and nothing in the email accounts or other communications facilities reviewed by the Office, shows that Papadopoulos shared this information with the Campaign.”

Misfurd himself denies mentioning emails during his meeting with Papadopoulos, as per his testimony to the Justice Department: “But Mifsud denied that he had advance knowledge that Russia was in possession of emails damaging to candidate Clinton, stating that he and Papadopoulos had discussed cybersecurity and hacking as a larger issue and that Papadopoulos must have misunderstood their conversation.”

In his report, Mueller does not at any point claim that Misfurd’s denial was false.

As National Review summarized, Papadopoulos later explained that any reference to emails was to Hillary Clinton’s private email server, a subject of international news reportage at the time of his meeting with Downer.

The magazine reports:

Papadopoulos says the emails he claims Mifsud referred to were not the DNC emails; they were Clinton’s own emails. That is, when Papadopoulos claims that Mifsud told him that Russia had “dirt” in the form of “thousandsof “emails of Clinton,” he understood Mifsud to be alluding to the thousands of State Department and Clinton Foundation emails that Clinton had stored on a private server. These, of course, were the emails that were being intensively covered in the media (including speculation that they might have been hacked by hostile foreign intelligence services) at the time Mifsud and Papadopoulos spoke — i.e., April 2016, when neither Mifsud nor Papadopoulos had any basis to know anything about hacked DNC emails.

The Justice Department, meanwhile, documented:

When interviewed, Papadopoulos and the Campaign officials who interacted with him told the Office that they could not recall Papadopoulos sharing the information that Russia had obtained “dirt” on candidate Clinton in the form of emails or that Russia could assist the Campaign through the anonymous release of information about Clinton.

Papadopoulos stated that he could not clearly recall having told anyone on the Campaign and wavered about whether he accurately remembered an incident in which Clovis had been upset after hearing Papadopoulos tell Clovis that Papadopoulos thought “they have her emails.”

The Campaign officials who interacted or corresponded with Papadopoulos have similarly stated, with varying degrees of certainty, that he did not tell them. Senior policy adviser Stephen Miller, for example, did not remember hearing anything from Papadopoulos or Clovis about Russia having emails of or dirt on candidate Clinton. Clovis stated that he did not recall anyone, including Papadopoulos, having given him non-public information that a foreign Government might be in possession of material damaging to Hillary Clinton.

4 – Did you find that senior members of the Trump campaign met with Russian representatives at Trump Tower after being told in an email that the meeting was part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump?

Here, Comey seems to ignore Mueller’s finding of no evidence of any coordination between Russia and Trump’s campaign. His question seems to suggest wrongdoing on the part of Trump’s team.

Comey should refer to multiple Breitbart News investigations by this reporter into the infamous brief meeting at Trump Tower on June 9, 2016 between individuals tied to Russia, Donald Trump Jr. and other campaign officials. Those probes point to the increasing likelihood of the confab being set up as a dirty trick against Trump’s presidential campaign.

Three Russian participants at the meeting have ties to the controversial Fusion GPS outfit, and two have confirmed ties to Clinton.

Also, email logs brought to light show numerous emails were exchanged between a Clinton associate, Fusion GPS and Trump Tower participants, with the subjects of some of those emails listing the Magnitsky Act, which sanctions Russian officials and was by all accounts the very topic of the Trump Tower meeting.

One Russian participant in the Trump Tower presentation admits to personally knowing Hillary Clinton since the late 1990s and says he “knew” some of the people who worked on Clinton’s 2016 campaign.

Another Russian attendee, a translator, testified that he was previously an interpreter for Hillary herself as well as for John Kerry and Barack Obama.

Questions are also raised by a timeline showing numerous personal meetings between Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson and Trump Tower participants. A Clinton associate, Ed Lieberman, was listed as being present at one and possibly two of those meetings.

Separately, Lieberman met with one Russian participant the same day as the Trump Tower meeting, according to separate testimony.

There are also questions about the initial setup of the Trump Tower meeting, with the publicist who sent the infamous email to Donald Trump Jr. promising “information that would incriminate” Clinton later admitting that he used deliberately hyperbolic language to ensure that the meeting took place. No such incriminating information on Hillary was provided, according to all meeting participants. In testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Robert Goldstone, the publicist, further said that he believes the meeting was a “bait and switch” by a Russian lobbyist seeking a meeting on another matter by misleadingly claiming to be bringing the Trump campaign dirt on Clinton.

5 – Did you find that, despite the fact that candidate Trump said he had “nothing to do with Russia,” his organization had been pursuing a major Moscow project into the middle of the election year and that candidate Trump was regularly updated on developments?

Comey is peddling conspiracies, suggesting that a proposed draft project discussed generally and briefly by a real estate company that routinely builds overseas — a potential project with no secured financing, land or developer — could amount to wrongdoing. Trump did not secure any real estate project in Russia, but even doing so would not have been illegal.

Michael Cohen, a convicted liar and fraudster, claimed during a guilty plea that he lied to Congress when he first said that discussions on a Moscow real estate project ended in January 2016. Cohen later claimed messages were exchanged through June and that he personally updated Trump on the project.

Mueller’s report documents that Cohen “emailed the office of Dmitry Peskov, the Russian government’s press secretary,” but actually sent an email to the wrong address.

Mueller’s office could not find any follow up beyond one phone call with Peskov’s assistant:

On January 20, 2016, Cohen received an email from Elena Poliakova, Peskov’s personal assistant. Writing from her personal email account, Poliakova stated that she had been trying to reach Cohen and asked that he call her on the personal number that she provided. Shortly after receiving Poliakova’s email, Cohen called and spoke to her for 20 minutes. Cohen described to Poliakova his position at the Trump Organization and outlined the proposed Trump Moscow project, including information about the Russian counterparty with which the Trump Organization had partnered. Cohen requested assistance in moving the project forward, both in securing land to build the project and with financing. According to Cohen, Poliakova asked detailed questions and took notes, stating that she would need to follow up with others in Russia.

Cohen could not recall any direct follow-up from Poliakova or from any other representative of the Russian government, nor did the Office identify any evidence of direct follow-up.

Also, Cohen told Mueller’s office that “he elected not to travel at the time because of concerns about the lack of concrete proposals about land plots that could be considered as options for the project.”

6 – Did the Trump campaign report any of its Russian contacts to the FBI? Not even the indications from the Russian government that it could assist the campaign through the anonymous release of information damaging to candidate Clinton?

What is Comey even talking about here? Which Russian “contacts” should Trump’s campaign have reported to the FBI? Mueller concluded not only that there was no evidence of wrongdoing, but that “the investigation did not identify evidence that any U.S. persons knowingly or intentionally coordinated” with Russia’s interference campaign. If Trump’s team did not “knowingly or intentionally” collude with Russia, how could they have known to report anything?

For Comey’s misleading insinuation of “indications from the Russian government that it could assist the campaign through the anonymous release of information damaging to candidate Clinton,” please see my responses to #3 above, since the credibility-challenged Comey is asking a deceptively phrased question about a disputed episode involving Papadopoulos.

Aaron Klein is Breitbart’s Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio.” Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.

Joshua Klein contributed research to this article. 

Christopher Steele won’t cooperate with John Durham review of Russia investigation


Reported by Jerry Dunleavy | May 28, 2019 05:13 PM

URL of the original posting site: https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/christopher-steele-wont-cooperate-with-john-durham-review-of-russia-investigation

Christopher Steele, author of the dossier that played a key role in the Trump-Russia inquiry, will not assist Attorney General William Barr’s investigation of the investigators, according to a new report.

A source close to Orbis Business Intelligence, which is Steele’s investigative firm, told Reuters that the British ex-spy “would not cooperate” with nor answer questions from U.S. Attorney John Durham, whom Barr has tasked with reviewing the origins of the counterintelligence investigation into President Trump’s presidential campaign and the way that the Justice Department and FBI conducted the inquiry.

This revelation comes days after Trump’s order stating Barr was given “full and complete authority to declassify information” and ordering the intelligence community “to quickly and fully cooperate with the Attorney General’s investigation into surveillance activities during the 2016 presidential election.” Barr said he picked Durham because he “was looking for someone who is tenacious, who is used to looking at sensitive material involving government activities, who has a reputation for being fair and evenhanded.”

Neither the Justice Department nor Steele’s business immediately responded to the Washington Examiner’s request for comment. Durham’s office said they had no comment at this time.

The report said Steele “might cooperate” with DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s independent investigation, signaling a shift in Steele’s thinking. In April, Politico reported that Steele “declined to be interviewed by the inspector general, citing, among other things, the potential impropriety of his involvement in an internal Justice Department investigation as a foreign national and former British intelligence agent.” That report said Steele might even “rebut the Inspector General’s characterizations” with a public statement.

Horowitz has been looking into potential Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act abuse since early 2018 and is “homing in” on the potential misuse of Steele’s unverified dossier by the DOJ and FBI. Barr has said Horowitz’s probe should be done by May or June.

Steele did cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and submitted written testimony to the Senate Intelligence Committee.

According to a New York Times report from April, the FBI reached out to some of Steele’s foreign sources in an attempt to determine their credibility, and as early as January 2017 agents had concluded that some of the dossier’s contents may have been based on “rumors and hearsay” which were “passed from source to source.” The agents believed that some of Steele’s information may have even been based on “Russian disinformation.”

Steele’s dossier, which was packed with unverified claims about Trump’s ties to Russia, formed a key part of the FISA applications that were used to justify surveillance warrants against former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. Steele was working for Fusion GPS, which received funding through the Perkins Coie law firm from the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee. Steele’s Democratic benefactors were not revealed to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

Barr said this month that “it’s a very unusual situation to have opposition research like that — especially one that on its face had a number of clear mistakes and a somewhat jejune analysis.” Barr’s pointed critiques of the Steele dossier’s flaws comes after former FBI Director James Comey and former FBI General Counsel James Baker defended their handling of the dossier in recent weeks.

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