This is the link to the transcripts of the House of Representatives testimony concerning the investigation into Russian collusion in the 2016 presidential election. Don’t settle for anyone’s spin–read it for yourself.
Breitbart is reporting today that the the leak saying that Russia is interfering in the 2020 election is not true. Just as an aside, Russia has always interfered in our elections–they don’t care who wins–they just want to disrupt things and hopefully cause Americans to lose faith in the electoral process. Unfortunately they have been more successful at times than I would have liked.
The article reports:
U.S. intelligence and national security officials have reportedly refuted the claim that Russia is interfering in the 2020 elections to help President Donald Trump’s re-election, arguing in media reports published over the weekend that the United States does not have evidence to support the allegation.
House Democrat lawmakers pushing the allegation that the Kremlin is trying to help Trump “misheard or misinterpreted” the intelligence community’s formal assessment of ongoing U.S. election interference by the Russians, unnamed U.S. officials suggested to the New York Times.
Just another example of fake news put forth by the Democrats and the mainstream media.
The article concludes:
Citing sources familiar with the matter, the Washington Post recently reported that U.S. officials had warned Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) that Russia is trying to get him to the White House. Sanders is currently the front-runner for the Democrat presidential nomination.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) has described the assertion that Russia is trying to help Sanders as “false,” lambasting Trump for repeating it.
Echoing the U.S. intelligence and national security officers who spoke to CNN and the Times, White House national security adviser Robert O’Brien and Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff Marc Short denied the ODNI official’s claim that Russia is interfering in the 2020 presidential election to aid Trump’s re-election.
Nevertheless, Democrat lawmakers continue to claim that Russia is interfering in the U.S. elections on behalf of Trump.
President Trump has called for an investigation into a possible leak of classified intelligence unveiled during the briefing on election interference, accusing Schiff of leaking the information.
What needs to happen here is that the person who leaked whatever information was leaked needs to be prosecuted for leaking.
The article reports:
The oligarch who once controlled Russia’s largest aluminum empire has been an international man of intrigue in the now-completed and disproven Trump collusion investigation.
Deripaska was a disaffected former business client of Donald Trump’s fallen campaign chairman Paul Manafort. He also was a legal research client of Trump-hating, Clinton-aiding British spy Christopher Steele. In his spare time, he was an occasional friendly cooperator with the FBI and its fired deputy director, Andrew McCabe.
During his interview with John Solomon, Deripaska talked about being interviewed by the FBI and stating the following:
“I told them straightforward, ‘Look, I am not a friend with him [Manafort]. Apparently not, because I started a court case [against him] six or nine months before … . But since I’m Russian I would be very surprised that anyone from Russia would try to approach him for any reason, and wouldn’t come and ask me my opinion,’ ” he said, recounting exactly what he says he told the FBI agents that day.
“I told them straightforward, I just don’t believe that he would represent any Russian interest. And knowing what he’s doing on Ukraine for the last, what, seven or eight years.”
The article explains why this is important:
OK, so why should you care if a Russian denied Trump campaign collusion with Russia during the election?
First, Deripaska wasn’t just any Russian. He was closely aligned with Putin and had been helpful to the FBI as far back as 2009. So he had earned some trust with the agents.
Most importantly, Deripaska’s interview with the FBI reportedly was never provided by Team Mueller to Manafort’s lawyers, even though it was potential proof of innocence, according to Manafort defense lawyer Kevin Downing. Manafort, initially investigated for collusion, was convicted on tax and lobbying violations unrelated to the Russia case.
That omission opens a possible door for appeal for what is known as a Brady violation, for hiding exculpatory information from a defendant.
“Recent revelations by The Hill prove that the Office of Special Counsel’s (OSC) claim that they had a legitimate basis to include Paul Manafort in an investigation of potential collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and the Russian government is false,” Downing told me. “The failure to disclose this information to Manafort, the courts, or the public reaffirms that the OSC did not have a legitimate basis to investigate Manafort, and may prove that the OSC had no legitimate basis to investigate potential collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and the Russian government.”
The article then explains why Deripaska is trusted by the FBI:
Deripaska confirmed a story I reported last year from FBI sources that he spent more than $20 million of his own money between 2009 and 2011 on a private rescue operation to free Robert Levinson, a retired FBI agent captured in Iran in 2007 while on a CIA mission.
…Deripaska said his privately funded rescue team came very close to a deal with the Iranian captors to secure Levinson’s release but he was told by his FBI handlers that the deal ran into difficulties at Hillary Clinton’s State Department and was scuttled. “I heard that some Russian ‘hand,’ or whatever you call people who are expert on the Russians at the State Department, [said], ‘We just don’t want to owe anything to this guy,’ ” Deripaska told me, adding that he never expected any U.S. favors for his personal efforts to free Levinson.
Asked if he thought the former FBI agent is alive, some dozen years later, Deripaska answered: “I don’t think so.” He pointed out that if Levinson had been alive, he likely would have come home in 2016, after the Obama administration struck a nuclear deal with Iran.
Deripaska said he is continuing to investigate what really happened at State with Levinson, as he tries to fight the sanctions levied against him in 2018. His company, Rusal, has been removed from the sanctions list.
The article concludes:
Throughout the interview, it was clear Deripaska chose his words in English carefully. But there was one word he offered only twice — once in response to the Steele dossier’s allegations of Trump-Russia collusion, and the other time to respond to the allegations used to sanction him. “Balderdash,” he insisted.
Now it’s time for Team Mueller to answer the same questions.
I wonder why the State Department would have blocked the return of Levinson. Is it possible that he might have said things that would have scuttled the Iran deal?
On Thursday, Judicial Watch posted the following Press Release:
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today released an email revealing that Nellie Ohr, wife of former Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, informed him that she was deleting emails sent from Bruce Ohr’s DOJ email account.
From: Nellie Ohr
Sent: Wednesday, April 20, 2016 12:49 PM
To: Ohr, Bruce (ODAG)
Subject: Re: Analyst Russian Organized Crime – April 2016
Thanks! I’m deleting these emails now
The full email exchange is between Bruce Ohr, Lisa Holtyn, Nellie Ohr, and Stefan Bress, a first secretary at the German Embassy, and is part of 339 pages of heavily redacted records from the U.S. Department of Justice.
Judicial Watch obtained the records through a March 2018 Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed after the Justice Department failed to respond a December 2017 request (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:18-cv-00490)).
Nellie Ohr’s email has the same subject line as an email exchange with the subject line “Analyst Russian Organized Crime – April 2016” in which Bress initiates a discussion with Bruce Ohr and his top aide, Lisa Holtyn, proffering some “Russian analysts” to discuss a variety of topics with Ohr, Holtyn, and other DOJ officials. Among those topics to be discussed is “Impact of Russian influence operations in Europe (‘PsyOps/InfoWar’).”
Holtyn responds with, “I haven’t had a chance to confer with Bruce yet, but would certainly love to meet with the ‘A Team’!” Bruce Ohr then says, “That time works for me as well.” Bress then provides the personal details/passport numbers of the German analysts who will be meeting with Holtyn and Ohr. Holtyn tells Bress that the Ohr’s would like to host the German delegation for dinner and notes that Joe Wheatley and Ivana Nizich (a husband/wife team of DOJ Organized Crime prosecutors and friends of the Ohr’s) would join them as well.
Until he was demoted for his connection to the anti-Trump dossier, Bruce Ohr was a top official at DOJ. A House Intelligence Committee memo released by Chairman Devin Nunes said that Nellie Ohr was “employed by Fusion GPS to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump” and that Bruce Ohr passed the results of that research, which was paid for by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Hillary Clinton campaign, to the FBI. The “salacious and unverified” Dossier was used to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) surveillance warrant to spy on Carter Page.
These documents are part of Nellie Ohr’s and the DOJ’s communications about Russia. Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) recently wrote up a criminal referral concerning her testimony before Congress that she had no knowledge of what was going on during the Russia investigation at DOJ.
“This email is disturbing and suggests documents relevant to the improper targeting of President Trump were destroyed,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
This production of documents also revealed that Bruce Ohr remained in regular contact with former British spy and Fusion GPS contractor Christopher Steele after Steele was terminated by the FBI in November 2016 for revealing to the media his position as an FBI confidential informant.
Americans just spent upwards of $30 million and two years investigating Russian collusion and obstruction of said investigation. Why weren’t deleted emails from key players in the investigation looked at?
The investigation into the investigators has something in common with many Clinton scandals. Although the Clintons are only tangentially involved in this scandal, it bears one of their trademarks–keep the scandal in the news until people are sick of it. At that point, reveal the truth. The public will be so bored with the basic scandal that they won’t even notice or process the truth. I hope I am wrong about this–people involved in the abuse of government power need to go to jail, but I am afraid that by the time the truth comes out, no one will care.
Paul Farhi posted an article yesterday at The Washington Post about the media’s role in the Mueller investigation.
The article reports:
After more than two years of intense reporting and endless talking-head speculation about possible collusion between Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and Russian agents in 2016, special counsel Robert S. Mueller III put a huge spike in all of it on Sunday. Attorney General William P. Barr relayed Mueller’s key findings in a four-page summary of the 22-month investigation: The evidence was insufficient to conclude that Trump or his associates conspired with Russians to interfere in the campaign.
Barr’s announcement was a thunderclap to mainstream news outlets and the cadre of mostly liberal-leaning commentators who have spent months emphasizing the possible-collusion narrative in opinion columns and cable TV panel discussions.
“Nobody wants to hear this, but news that Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller is headed home without issuing new charges is a death-blow for the reputation of the American news media,” Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi wrote in a column published Saturday, a day before Barr nailed the collusion coffin shut. He added: “Nothing Trump is accused of from now on by the press will be believed by huge chunks of the population.”
That’s bad enough, but there is another noteworthy observation in the article:
Other news outlets defended their reporting as well, noting that much of it is undisputed and has led to indictments and guilty pleas by figures associated with Trump’s campaign.
“I’m comfortable with our coverage,” said Dean Baquet, the New York Times’s top editor. “It is never our job to determine illegality, but to expose the actions of people in power. And that’s what we and others have done and will continue to do.”
He noted that Barr’s letter summarizing Mueller’s findings points out that the actions that warranted an obstruction inquiry were “the subject of public reporting” — a fact “that’s to the credit of the media.”
In fact, revelations by the Times and The Washington Post about contacts between Russian agents and Trump’s campaign advisers in 2016 helped prompt the inquiry that the special counsel took over in May 2017. The two newspapers shared a Pulitzer Prize for their reporting on the issue that year.
Although the mainstream media tried to make this Watergate, it wasn’t, and I suspect they have little or no intention of admitting their misreporting of major aspects of the story. First of all, where was the reporting of the abuse of power by the Obama administration in surveillance of an opposition party political campaign? Second, where was the commentary on inflammatory statements by former intelligence officials that later proved to be wrong? Third, where was the commentary on the accomplishments of the Trump administration in trade, taxes, and economic policy? If you are still watching the mainstream media and believing what they say, you will continue to be misinformed and mislead.
Yesterday Sara Carter reported on a public hearing that is going to take place today.
The article reports:
A trove of documents on the Clinton Foundation alleging possible pay for play and tax evasion have been turned over to the FBI and IRS by several investigative whistleblowers, who will be testifying in an open hearing before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Thursday, according to the committee and lawmakers.
Roughly 6,000 documents that are expected to reveal the nearly two-year investigation by the whistleblowers with a private firm called MDA Analytics LLC, which allegedly turned over the documents more than a year and a half ago to the IRS, according to John Solomon, who first published the report last week in The Hill.
There is a connection between the whistleblowers and Robert Mueller:
However, a former whistleblower, who has spoken with agents from the Little Rock FBI field office last year and worked for years as an undercover informant collecting information on Russia’s nuclear energy industry for the bureau, noted his enormous frustration with the DOJ and FBI. He describes as a two-tiered justice system that failed to actively investigate the information he provided years ago on the Clinton Foundation and Russia’s dangerous meddling with the U.S. nuclear industry and energy industry during the Obama administration.
William D. Campbell’s story was first published by this reporter in 2017. He turned over more than 5,000 documents and detailed daily briefs to the bureau when he served as a confidential informant reporting on Russia’s nuclear giant Rosatom. Campbell worked as an energy consultant, gaining the trust of Russians and providing significant insight into Russia’s strategic plans to gain global dominance in the uranium industry. He reported on Russian’s intentions to build a closer relationship with Obama administration officials, to include then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, as reported. The documents he turned over to the DOJ, which were reviewed by this news site, showed Campbell had also provided highly sensitive information both related to the uranium case, as well as other intelligence matters, since 2006.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller was the director of the FBI at the time Campbell was a confidential informant and according to Campbell, the information was briefed to Mueller by his FBI handlers.
It seems as if the corruption and blindness in the FBI is not a new thing.
Yesterday Sara Carter posted an article about the questioning of Peter Strzok yesterday by House Judiciary and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee members.
The article reports:
Strzok, who evaded a subpoena from House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), voluntarily appeared at the hearing. Thousands of Strzok’s anti-Trump text messages, which he exchanged with former FBI lawyer and his paramour, Lisa Page, sparked anger from Republicans (and criticism from some Democrats) who contend that senior members of the FBI utilized their power and political leanings to target Trump both before and after the 2016 election.
…Freedom Caucus member, Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL)-who was also in attendance- told SaraACarter.com, “It was a waste—Strzok is full of it and he kept hiding behind [the] classified information excuse.”
…Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) who was at the deposition Wednesday, told saraacarter.com that Strzok should be back to testify at an opening hearing.
The Judiciary Committee tweeted on Tuesday, “Peter Strzok will be interviewed first in a closed-door deposition. There will be classified information to sort through before a public hearing is held. A public hearing will be held!”
These hearings behind closed doors were a total waste of everyone’s time. The hearings need to be public with witnesses sworn in. Claims of classified information need to be debunked. We have already learned that the redactions in documents handed to Congress were about not making the FBI and DOJ look bad rather than about classified information. I suspect the same thing is happening with this testimony. It is time for Congress to get all of the document involved (unredacted), and much of the information in those documents needs to be made public. We have been dealing with a whitewash and a bogus investigation by the FBI and DOJ for more than a year. The contrast between the email investigation and the Russian interference investigation is amazing. If we have to fire all of the upper echelon of the FBI and DOJ to get to the truth, we need to do that.
In 1987 The New York Times printed an article about Raymond J. Donovan, Secretary of Labor under President Reagan. The were a lot of people in the media and in government who disliked President Reagan almost as much as they dislike President Trump. In 1985, Donovan resigned from his Cabinet position because charges of fraud and grand larceny were brought against him (those charges had nothing to do with his work in the Reagan administration). He was the first Cabinet member in history to be indicted. In 1987 he was cleared of all of those charges.
In 1987, The New York Times reported that Mr. Donovan had been acquitted. At the end of the trial, Mr. Donovan asked, “Which office do I go to to get my reputation back?” That is not to mention the expense of defending himself during the two and a half years of the trial. The use off the government to bully people into submission is not a new problem, but we have definitely seen an increase of attacks on people tangentially associated with Donald Trump.
Yesterday The New York Post posted an article about the impact the Mueller witch hunt has had on Carter Page.
The article reports:
FBI surveillance of former Trump campaign advisor Carter Page cost him business, income and even his girlfriend.
Page tells The Post that during the media barrage he faced in late 2016, he visited his girlfriend at her London flat, where she was “freaking out with the fake news about me.”
“Talking with her later in the evening after dinner, she told me that she didn’t want me staying there anymore, and that our relationship was over.
“So late that night,” Page continued, “I booked a last-minute hotel reservation as part of this early chapter of the redefinition of my life.”
Page believes the FBI’s mole, professor Stefan Halper, was secretly spying on him as part of a “politically motivated” investigation of Team Trump, using fake sympathy to gain his trust — all while fishing for dirt on Page’s ties to Russia, where he’d worked as an energy consultant.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned out to be a trap,” Page said.
People who work on a political campaign should not be subject to government spying simply because they worked on a political campaign.
The Gateway Pundit posted an article today that included one of President Trump’s tweets:
This is wrong. The Mueller investigation has bankrupted General Flynn, awakened Paul Manafort‘s family at gunpoint in the middle of the night, and bankrupted Michael Caputo (article here) after he worked on the Trump campaign for a short period of time.
None of Mueller’s efforts have uncovered one shred of evidence that the Russians were working for the Trump campaign or vice versa. Mueller has terrorized American citizens in the name of justice and not been held accountable for it. It is time to turn the tables and hold Mueller accountable for his actions.
The Russian Collusion/Spy In The Trump Campaign story is getting old and it is getting complicated. There are some reporters, however, who have made the story a little easier to follow. Sharyl Attkisson has continued her outstanding work as an investigative reporter and posted a timeline of changes in Justice Department personnel from October 2015 to the present on her website.
Here is the timeline:
As the spying scandal unfolds, keep an eye on the people who have moved out and the people who have moved in. I would suspect that the people who are being moved in are there to drain the swamp. The people who have moved out or left are quite likely looking for good lawyers at this point.
The Wall Street Journal posted a story this morning entitled, “Russia’s Anti-American Foreign Policy” (no link–subscribers only). So what happened to ‘reset’? Regardless of what is said between the two countries, the freedom of America is a potential threat to the totalitarianism of Russia.
The article notes:
The U.S. needs three things from Russia: understanding in defense matters, assistance in the war on terror, and help in curbing the ambitions of rogue states. In each case, the record of the Putin regime is one of relentless obstruction.
Among other things, Russia has objected to the idea of an antimissile shield in Europe. Why? There is no logical reason for that opposition. NATO has never been a threat to Russia. The Russians have recently taken in Edward Snowden, and whether you see him as a traitor or a hero, that was definitely a slap in the face toward the United States.
One of the things that the article points out is that the Russian economy is deteriorating–in the second quarter of 2013, the growth was 1.2 percent. During the 2000’s the growth rate was 7.2 percent. Russia needs high oil prices to keep its economy afloat. Middle East instability results in high oil prices.
There are two lessons to be learned here. First of all, we need to remember that Russia is looking out for Russia’s interests–not America’s interests. Peace in the Middle East is not in their interest. Second of all, we could be done with all this kowtowing to the tyrants of Russia and the Middle East if we would develop our own energy sources. We need the Keystone Pipeline so that we won’t be at the mercy of Russian foreign policy–we need to determine our own foreign policy without being enslaved to Middle East oil.
We have all read President Obama’s supposedly off-the-record comments to Russian President Medvedev. The mainstream media seems to be avoiding saying much about those comments, but conservative commentators (and Republican candidates) have sounded the appropriate alarm.
Hugh Hewitt posted an interview with Mitt Romney on his blog:
MR: Well, it is revealing, it is alarming, it’s troubling, it suggests that the President has a very different agenda with the Russians than he’s willing to tell the American people. And for that reason alone, we ought to vote him out of office. This is a very disconcerting development.
HH: What do you think he has in mind, Governor, when he says I will be flexible? Is it missile defense? It is the number of our warheads? Is it Iran? What is he talking about?
MR: Well, he says missile defense, but we’re talking about one of those two issues, either missile defense or warheads. What he’s done on warheads, of course, with the new START Treaty, he took warheads down to 1,500 on strategic nuclear weapons. Of course, the Russians were already at 1,500. They didn’t have to have any reductions. We were at 2,200. So the only reduction in his missile defense treaty was a reduction at the U.S. level. And of course, he ignored the tactical nuclear weapons, which are of course the same nukes. They’re just on smaller rockets. He ignored that, where Russia has an advantage of five or ten to one over us. So this is a president who continues to try and appease and accommodate, and believes that the best interests of America are to bow to the interests of Russia. And it’s very, very troubling, and I mean, I’m very disturbed by this. I hope the American people understand that what we heard from the President is revealing about his character in terms of what he tells the American people, and revealing about his direction and sentiment with regards to Russian, which is after all our number one geopolitical foe. They don’t represent a military threat to us at the present, but they oppose us at every turn in the United Nations, and oppose us in every one of our efforts, whether in Iraq or Iran, North Korea. They’re on the other side. And for him to be cozying up with them with regards to missile defense is simply unacceptable.
HH: How do you expect this aside from the President will be understood in Poland and the Czech Republic, and Ukraine, and Georgia, and other front line states facing a newly-expansive Russia?
MR: Well, I think our friends around the world have been reevaluating their relationship with the United States, in part because of this president’s treatment of friends relative to the treatment of enemies. I’ve heard from more than one foreign leader that it seems to be preferable to be an American foe than an American friend to this president.
HH: Now Governor Romney, the press will of course attempt to dismiss this as not a big issue. Will this remain a front line issue? And do you think that the President has got to spell out with great detail what he has in mind here?
MR: You know, I don’t think he can recover from it, to tell you the truth. I mean, I think he will try and spin something. But I don’t know how you spin from an open mic, where you’re talking about having more flexibility after the election, which means quite clearly that you don’t want the American people to hear what you’re really planning on doing, and that you’re going to be able to do more when you no longer are accountable to the American people. You know, the mainstream media may try and put this to bed, but we’re going to keep it alive and awake. And we’re going to keep hammering him with it all the way through November.
It seems to me that there are enough serious questions about the President’s off-the-record statement to persuade Americans to vote against him.