4. I was once involved in an anti-trust lawsuit triggered when all of the competitors of the company I was working for gathered together and conspired on ways to sink my employer’s business. Before the minutes of the meeting, the group’s lawyers prepared a statement that that the group absolutely intended to obey all anti-trust laws, and the meeting would embody the ideals represented in those laws. Then they went ahead and, based on a recording of the meeting, planned ways to conspire against our business in direct violation of the laws they claimed to hold in such high esteem.
It was really comical; these idiots though that by having everyone sign a statement that they weren’t doing what they obviously were doing, this would provide some plausible deniability.
5. We now know that Rice’s bizarre memo was written upon the advice of the White House Counsel’s Office. Rice says she waited 15 days because it was her first opportunity to do so, since she had been so darned busy. It would be a more likely srory if Rice had any credibility at all, which she does not.
6. Let’s let Andrew McCarthy try to explain what’s going on here. The anti-Trump news sources will never give him a forum, so he’s related to Fox News, but McCarthy was spot-on in predicting the course of the Mueller investigation, as is as knowledgeable on the machinations of the Deep State as anyone. He explained in part,
How amusing to find President Obama’s national-security advisor, Susan Rice, suddenly calling for public release of the Flynn–Kislyak conversation intercepted by the Obama administration in late December 2016. I called for its release nearly three-and-a-half years ago. Dr. Rice, in a familiar pattern for her, has spent the ensuing years saying things that were obviously untrue only to reverse herself once the paper trail starts to dribble out.
….Rice has gone from claiming to have had no knowledge of Obama administration monitoring of Flynn and other Trump associates, to claiming no knowledge of any unmaskings of Trump associates, to admitting she was complicit in the unmaskings, to — now — a call for the recorded conversation between retired general Michael Flynn and Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak to be released because it would purportedly show that the Obama administration had good reason to be concerned about Flynn (y’know, the guy she said she had no idea they were investigating).
Naturally, we have now learned that Rice was deeply involved in the Obama administration’s Trump–Russia investigation, including its sub-investigation of Flynn, a top Trump campaign surrogate who was slated to replace Rice as national-security advisor when President Trump took office.
Regarding the memo, McCarthy writes,
It seems that the purpose of the memo was to shift the blame to then-FBI Director James Comey for the withholding of Russia intelligence from the Trump team.
Rice’s objective was to absolve President Barack Obama of any blame for directing that Russia information be concealed from Trump and his incoming national security team, particularly Michael Flynn, who was slated to become national security adviser.
Of course, the withholding of that information would be essential if the investigation of Trump, begun by Obama’s administration, were to continue after Trump took office.
…The FBI director is said to have stated that concealment was “potentially” necessary. The meeting ended with the understanding that Comey would continue to monitor the situation and get back to Obama “if anything changes.”
The implication, obviously, is that Comey never got back to Obama. That is, if Russia information was withheld from Trump – as it was – the culprit was the FBI director who was staying on, not the outgoing president whose administration investigated Trump on the baseless claim that his campaign might have conspired with Russia to steal the 2016 election.
Recall what Rice’s function had been in other Obama debacles–spin, deception and cover-up.
The newly disclosed paragraph underscores the intensity of the Obama administration’s focus on Flynn, as well as the dearth of a factual or legal basis for investigating him, either as a criminal suspect or a clandestine agent of the Kremlin.
The Jan. 5 meeting took place at a critical juncture in the Trump-Russia counterintelligence investigation. The FBI had opened its probe under the codename “Crossfire Hurricane” in late July 2016. It was deemed an “umbrella” investigation of the Trump campaign, and came to include sub-investigations of four campaign officials….
It was entirely appropriate for Flynn – as the incoming Trump national security adviser – to engage in such conversations with foreign counterparts. On the call, Flynn had discouraged Russia from escalating tensions with the U.S. – just as we would want any American official engaged in foreign relations to do.
Tellingly, just a day before the Oval Office meeting, the FBI had completed a memo closing its Crossfire Razor investigation of Flynn because no evidence had been found to support the absurd suspicion that he was a clandestine agent of Russia.
Nevertheless, even though Flynn’s conversation with Kislyak had been proper, Obama officials seemed determined to use it as a pretext for extending the investigation of Flynn….
The newly disclosed paragraph Rice wrote about the Comey-Obama begins,
“Director Comey affirmed that he is proceeding ‘by the book’ as it relates to law enforcement.” The emphasis on law enforcement relates to potential criminal prosecution, as distinguished from counterintelligence, which is about gathering information about foreign powers, such as Russia. In that light, one wonders what “book” Comey and Obama had in mind….
There was no evidence that Flynn had committed any crimes. Consequently, as shown by documents recently disclosed by the Justice Department, Comey was reduced to discussing the possibility that Flynn might have violated the Logan Act.
The Logan Act is a moribund, unconstitutional 18th-century prohibition against unauthorized diplomacy has never been used in a successful prosecution, has not been invoked since before the Civil War, and has never been the subject of an indictment in the 150-year history of the Justice Department. There could be nothing “by the book” about a law enforcement investigation of a purported Logan Act violation.
According to Rice, Comey then moved on to “a national security perspective” – a reference to the counterintelligence probe. Again, it turned out that the FBI director had no concrete grounds for suspicion.
Comey said he had “some concerns that incoming NSA Flynn is speaking frequently with Russian Ambassador Kislyak.”
Even if this were true, the number of contacts would be irrelevant – especially for an incoming national security adviser – as long as nothing nefarious was discussed. On that score, Comey had no disparaging information, even admitting that he had “no indication thus far that Flynn has passed classified information to Kislyak.”
On top of that nothing, Rice says the FBI director piled more nothing, observing that “the level of communication is unusual.”
Rice, to repeat, was writing on Jan. 20, 2017 about what supposedly happened on Jan. 5. She includes no indication that Comey ever reported back to Obama. We are left to understand that nothing about withholding Russia intelligence was really resolved at the meeting, and to assume that nothing happened afterward that would have caused President Obama to do anything further.
Translation: If it came to pass that Russia information was withheld from President Trump, National Security Adviser Flynn and the incoming Trump team, blame Comey. Of course, the palpable reason for concealing Russian intelligence from the new president and his national security team would be to obscure the fact that the Obama administration had monitored the Trump campaign and planned for the investigation to continue even after Trump took power. That is not something an FBI director could have pulled off on his own. Counterintelligence investigations, after all, are done for the president.
7. This whole thing reeks. The problem is that it is too technical and complicated for the average citizen to understand, and few will wade through McCarthy’s exposition, though it is admirably clear. If a Republican administration had done this to an incoming Democratic President, the Times and the Post would have their investigative reporters searching through trash cans. Instead, the mainstream media is burying the story. This is a perfect example of how a corrupted, partisan mews media makes the nation vulnerable to anti-democratic rot. Ask any of your social media friends to explain the significance of Rice’s memo. I’ll be most aren’t even aware of it.
8. Jonathan Turley also took on the Flynn fiasco, writing in part,
Prosecutors often stack up charges and then drain defendants until they agree to pleading guilty. There was a time when such abuses were regularly called out in leading newspapers. These are not those times. The Flynn case was a textbook example of these abuses but media commentators quickly adopted the “anyone who pleads guilty must be guilty” mantra. Suddenly, the “proof is in the plea” regardless of false representations, withheld evidence, and conflicting findings in the Flynn case.
The only acceptable take in the media is that the motion to dismiss the Flynn case is an outrageous politicalization of the justice system. This narrative is only possible by ignoring the long-standing questions over the handling and charge in the case. Indeed, it is telling how both controlling law and countervailing facts have been uniformly (and knowingly) ignored in order to portray the case as a virtual immaculate prosecution.
Without an objective, competent, non-partisan news media, I don’t know what hope we have. When journalists flock to the aid of the likes of Susan Rice, we really are seeing enemies of the people in action.