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Thread: Ex-FBI Director Mueller appointed DOJ Special Counsel

  1. #511
    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post
    http://thehill.com/homenews/administ...-likely-behind

    The White House on Monday condemned the poisoning of an ex-Russian spy in the U.K. earlier this month but declined to say whether Moscow was responsible.
    Uh, now let me think, real hard, who might want to off some ex-Russian spies. Must be the Finns.

    Letting Putin get away with what ever he wants to do isn't a great idea in my book. Reagan would have called them onto the carpet. Yet, Trump, almost seems like he has a see no evil attitude coming from his admired friend.

  2. #512
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    Quote Originally Posted by tbm3fan View Post
    Uh, now let me think, real hard, who might want to off some ex-Russian spies. Must be the Finns.

    Letting Putin get away with what ever he wants to do isn't a great idea in my book. Reagan would have called them onto the carpet. Yet, Trump, almost seems like he has a see no evil attitude coming from his admired friend.
    Or like Obama when faced with the largest most expensive cyber attack in history or tampering with the 2016 election. I have no love for Trump but he can do nothing or everything as no one else on the planet? Remember the transgender ban or the first four travel embargoes? Obama did say stop it or else. The lesson is not actions but say the proper words.

    Before the 2016 election I can't believe Fox and MSNBC or the Huffington Post or Breitbart ever existed with out Russian intervention.

  3. #513
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    I'm actually surprised by this if it's true. Source is a "Thai official".

    FBI tried to contact 'sex coaches' in Thai jail

    FBI agents have tried to meet a pair of self-styled "sex coaches" detained in a Bangkok jail who claim to have evidence of Russian meddling in the 2016 US election, a senior Thai official told CNN.

    Belarussian citizens Anastasia Vashukevich and Alexander Kirillov sent a handwritten letter last month to the US Embassy in Bangkok asking for help in getting them released in exchange for information on alleged meddling in the US presidential election.

    The FBI agents contacted Thailand's Immigration bureau last week to try to organize the meeting, the highly placed source in the department said.

    The request was refused by Thai officials because only legal representatives and family members of the detainees are permitted access to the detainees, added the source, who is not authorized to speak to media.

    Asked about the FBI's attempt to meet the pair, a spokesperson for the US embassy in Bangkok referred CNN to a statement released last week.

    "We are aware of media reports of this individual's arrest. She is not a US citizen, and we would refer you to Thai law enforcement for further questions," it said.
    https://www.cnn.com/2018/03/13/asia/...ntl/index.html

  4. #514
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    House ends Russia probe, says no Trump-Kremlin collusion

    House Intelligence Committee Republicans closed their investigation of Russian election interference Monday, declaring they found no evidence that President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign cooperated with the Kremlin, a conclusion Trump quickly celebrated — but which Democrats called premature and even misleading.

    Soon after the Republican announcement, Trump triumphantly claimed vindication on Twitter. "THE HOUSE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE HAS, AFTER A 14 MONTH LONG IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATION, FOUND NO EVIDENCE OF COLLUSION OR COORDINATION BETWEEN THE TRUMP CAMPAIGN AND RUSSIA TO INFLUENCE THE 2016 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION," he wrote.

    The House Republicans also said that a 150-page report they prepared — without consulting their Democratic colleagues — contradicts the U.S. intelligence community's firm conclusion that the goal of the Russian government effort was to boost Trump's campaign.

    "We don't think that's supported by the underlying data," Texas Rep. Mike Conaway, the Republican leading the probe, said in a phone interview. Conaway told reporters Monday that some Trump campaign figures may have shown bad judgment in meeting with Kremlin-linked figures but that the meetings had not amounted to collusion.

    Conaway said dozens of interview and an exhaustive review of the intelligence agencies' findings suggests the Russian goal was to sow confusion and discord, not to help Trump. He added that a second report on that specific issue would be forthcoming.
    https://www.politico.com/story/2018/...57560?lo=ap_a1

  5. #515
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    McCabe fired with two days until retirement after the OIG report, McCabe has turned over memos and been interviewed by Mueller, and Trump is calling on Rosenstein to shut down the Special Counsel's investigation.

    These interesting times keep getting more interesting.

    Last edited by Ironduke; 18 Mar 18, at 17:02.

  6. #516
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    Gowdy: Trump's lawyer did president a 'disservice' in urging end to Mueller probe

    Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy on Sunday split with President Trump and lawyer John Dowd’s apparent efforts to try to end the special counsel’s Russia investigation, saying Dowd did the president a “disservice” and that investigators need the “time, independence and resources” to complete the probe.

    “I think the president’s attorney, frankly, does him a disservice when he says that and when he frames the investigation that way,” Gowdy told “Fox News Sunday.” “If you have an innocent client, Mr. Dowd, act like it.”

    Dowd, Trump’s personal attorney, on Saturday called for Special Counsel Robert Mueller to end the investigation into whether Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election and if the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow in such efforts.

    Dowd expressed hope that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein would decide to end the investigation, after Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Friday night fired former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe based on findings from the FBI's Office of Professional Responsibility.

    Trump tweeted Sunday minutes before Gowdy spoke: “Why does the Mueller team have 13 hardened Democrats, some big Crooked Hillary supporters, and Zero Republicans? Another Dem recently added...does anyone think this is fair? And yet, there is NO COLLUSION!”

    Gowdy, chairman of the House Oversight committee and a former federal prosecutor, expressed hope that Trump and Dowd were not trying to strong-arm an end to the investigation and argued that the probe goes beyond trying to find or prove collusion.

    “Give Bob Mueller the time, independence and resources to do his job,” Gowdy, of South Carolina, said Sunday. “And if you are innocent, act like it. … If you’ve done nothing wrong, you should want the investigation to be as fulsome and thorough as possible.”
    Link
    ________

    Uh, yeah, if there's two words that Trump does not want this investigation to be, it's "fulsome and thorough". And I can't imagine for one second why Trump's lawyer is acting so squirrelly about Mueller's probe...

    Seen in a comment's section: "Trump may not fear charges of collusion, but he is deathly afraid of charges of tax fraud, money laundering, obstruction of justice, and a myriad of other things that may come from Mueller's investigation"
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

  7. #517
    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    Seen in a comment's section: "Trump may not fear charges of collusion, but he is deathly afraid of charges of tax fraud, money laundering, obstruction of justice, and a myriad of other things that may come from Mueller's investigation"
    I agree with that especially the two in bold...

  8. #518
    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    Seen in a comment's section: "Trump may not fear charges of collusion, but he is deathly afraid of charges of tax fraud, money laundering, obstruction of justice, and a myriad of other things that may come from Mueller's investigation"
    Yep. He knows there is a literal cemetery of metaphorical bodies lurking out there. If the Dems win Congress in November you can guarantee a succession of inquiries into all things Trump. He won't be President forever, and the statute of limitations won't cover everything. Some prosecutor looking to make a name for him or herself won't be able to resist.


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  9. #519
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    https://www.washingtonpost.com/polit...ce8_story.html

    Trump’s national security advisers warned him not to congratulate Putin. He did it anyway.

    President Trump did not follow specific warnings from his national security advisers when he congratulated Russian President Vladi*mir Putin Tuesday on his reelection, including a section in his briefing materials in all-capital letters stating “DO NOT CONGRATULATE,” according to officials familiar with the call.

    Trump also chose not to heed talking points from aides instructing him to condemn Putin about the recent poisoning of a former Russian spy in the United Kingdom with a powerful nerve agent, a case that both the British and U.S. governments have blamed on Moscow.

    The president’s conversation with Putin, which Trump called a “very good call,” prompted fresh criticism of his muted tone toward one of the United States’s biggest geopolitical rivals amid the ongoing special counsel investigation into Russia’s election interference and the Trump campaign’s contacts with Russian officials.

    Although the Trump administration has taken a tougher stance toward Russia recently — including new sanctions last week on some entities for election meddling and cyber attacks — the president has declined to forcefully join London in denouncing Moscow for the poisoning of Sergie Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury this month. They remain critically ill.

    Trump told reporters that he had offered his well wishes on Putin’s new six-year term during a conversation on a range of topics, including arms control and the security situations in Syria and North Korea. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters that Skripal’s case was not discussed. Information on Syria and North Korea were also provided to the president in writing before the call, officials said.

    “We’ll probably be meeting in the not-too-distant future,” Trump said of Putin, though Sanders emphasized that nothing was planned.

    The White House press office declined to comment on the briefing materials given to Trump. Two people familiar with the notecards acknowledged that they included instructions not to congratulate Putin. But a senior White House official emphasized that national security adviser H.R. McMaster did not mention the issue during a telephone briefing with the president, who was in the White House residence ahead of and during his conversation with Putin.

    It was not clear whether Trump read the notes, administration officials said. Trump, who initiated the call, opened it with the congratulations for Putin, one person familiar with the conversation said.

    The president’s tone drew a rebuke from Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), chairman of the Armed Services Committee, who wrote on Twitter: “An American president does not lead the Free World by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections. And by doing so with Vladimir Putin, President Trump insulted every Russian citizen who was denied the right to vote in a free and fair election.”

    But Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, appeared less concerned, noting Trump has also offered congratulations to other leaders of more totalitarian states. “I wouldn’t read much into it,” Corker said.

    Putin’s latest consolidation of power came in what foreign policy analysts said was a rigged election in which he got 76 percent of the vote against several minor candidates. Some world leaders have hesitated to congratulate Putin, since his reelection occurred in an environment of state control of much of the news media and with his most prominent opponent barred from the ballot.

    Ahead of Tuesday’s phone call, national security aides provided Trump with several handwritten notecards filled with talking points to guide his conversation, as is customary for calls with foreign leaders, according to the officials with knowledge of the call, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.

    The notecards are similar to the one Trump was photographed clutching during a White House meeting with students and parents after the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., officials said.

    Trump’s failure to raise Moscow’s alleged poisoning of the former Russian spy in Britain risked angering officials in London, who are trying to rally Britain’s closest allies to condemn the attack. Russia has denied involvement in the March 4 poisoning, but the attack has badly damaged British-Russian relations and British Prime Minister Theresa May last week announced the expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats in retaliation.

    Putin denied that Russia had any role and called the claim “nonsense.”

    Asked about McCain’s criticism, Sanders noted that the leaders of France and Germany also called Putin this week and pointed to former president Barack Obama, who congratulated Putin on an election victory in 2012.

    “We’ve been very clear in the actions that we’ve taken that we’re going to be tough on Russia, particularly when it comes to areas that we feel where they’ve stepped out of place,” Sanders said. “We’ve placed tough sanctions on Russia and a number of other things where we have shown exactly what our position is.”

    She emphasized, however, that Trump is determined to establish a working relationship with Putin to tackle global challenges, including confronting North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.

    Asked whether the Trump administration believes Russia conducted a “free and fair” election, Sanders said the administration is focused on U.S. elections.

    “We don’t get to dictate how other countries operate,” she said. “What we do know is that Putin has been elected in their country, and that’s not something that we can dictate to them how they operate.”

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) also distanced himself Tuesday from Trump’s congratulatory remarks.

    “The president can call whomever he chooses,” McConnell said at his weekly news conference Tuesday. “When I look at a Russian election, what I see is a lack of credibility in tallying the results. I’m always reminded of the election they used to have in almost every communist country where whoever the dictator was at the moment always got huge percentage of the vote.”

    Trump has largely refrained from criticizing Putin amid the ongoing investigation into the 2016 election meddling by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, who in February indicted 13 Russian nationals on conspiracy charges. His tone has at times been at odds with his administration, which has taken stronger actions to counter Russian aggression, including Trump’s authorization of new sanctions against Russia and additional support Ukrainian troops in their fight against Russian-backed forces in Crimea.

    [Video: Trump discusses call with Putin]

    “It’s blatantly obvious that he has just an inexplicable level of support for President Putin,” said Julie Smith, a European security expert who served as deputy national security adviser for former vice president Joe Biden. “You keep thinking it will change as he sees his own administration take action — that this never-ending well of support for Putin will some how subside. It’s disheartening at a time when our trans-Atlantic partners really need a boost. Europe is looking to us for leadership on Russia in particular and they’re not getting it.”

    Thomas Wright, director of the Center on the United States and Europe at the Brookings Institution, said Trump’s actions were “a sign he wants a pro-Russia foreign policy,” which conflicts with the harder line from his administration.

    “Everyone is trying to figure out what does this mean,” Wright said. “Russia hawks say, pay attention to us, but not to the president or to the tweets. But the reality is, his reaction is policy. The fact that there hasn’t been a stronger sanctions response to the poisoning so far is policy.”

    Trump’s applause of Putin’s victory was in line with other congratulatory calls he has made, including to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for winning a much-disputed referendum that increased his already autocratic powers and to China’s President Xi Jinping for his “extraordinary elevation” after Xi last month engineered the Communist Party’s elimination of presidential term limits.

    “I think it’s great. Maybe we’ll have to give that a shot some day,” Trump said in a closed-door speech to Republican donors at his Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida several weeks ago, a recording of which was obtained by CNN.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

  10. #520
    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    A dark day when a President of the United States congratulates an autocratic dictator especially one that considers us an implacable adversary.

  11. #521
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tbm3fan View Post
    A dark day when a President of the United States congratulates an autocratic dictator especially one that considers us an implacable adversary.
    This guy wouldn't even shake Angela Merkel's hand, shoved the PM of Montenegro out of his way so to ape for the camera, and the list goes on. <sigh>

  12. #522
    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironduke View Post
    This guy wouldn't even shake Angela Merkel's hand, shoved the PM of Montenegro out of his way so to ape for the camera, and the list goes on. <sigh>
    Sure, but that Churchill bust is on full display at all times, so everything is fine.


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  13. #523
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    Seriously, is it conspiracy theorizing at this point to suggest that Putin might actually hold something over Trump's head?

  14. #524
    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by InExile View Post
    Seriously, is it conspiracy theorizing at this point to suggest that Putin might actually hold something over Trump's head?
    Its not impossible, but I wouldn't go overboard. There are so many insane & bizarre things that we are pretty sure are true. Just try to process those first. :-)
    Last edited by Bigfella; 21 Mar 18, at 10:02.


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  15. #525
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    Quote Originally Posted by InExile View Post
    Seriously, is it conspiracy theorizing at this point to suggest that Putin might actually hold something over Trump's head?
    Like BF said, it's certainly not impossible. And people are beginning to question it openly more and more:

    As GEN Barry McCaffery (Ret.) just recently warned via Twitter "It is apparent that [Donald Trump] is for some unknown reason under the sway of Mr Putin."

    I'm not yet ready to cry 'conspiracy theory' just yet (mainly because I despise conspiracy theorizing more than just about anything) but I am going on the record as stating "WTF? Seriously, WTF?!"
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

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