The Cards Are Falling Faster Now

The Cards Are Falling Faster Now

It’s always nice to be right. It’s especially nice to be right about developments of great import and which have been the subject of machination and obfuscation at the highest levels. In all modesty, I can’t think of a single key point I’ve made on the conspiracy to undo the results of the 2016 elections on which I’ve been wrong, but I’ll resist the urge to spike the ball. But now we’re finally seeing so many of the underpinnings of what has gone on for the past three-plus years peeled bare so that there can’t be any further doubt about the intent by one side of the political spectrum, utilizing the levers of power of the nation, to deprive Donald Trump of the fruits of his electoral victory.

It’s just under 14 months since I described a secret attempt by those in power, aided and abetted by many in the mainstream media, to undermine the nation’s electoral process and to thwart the election of a single person – Donald J. Trump – to the presidency, and to stymie his ability to govern once elected. I called for the identification, investigation, and prosecution of those involved in what amounts to the greatest and most far-reaching conspiracy in U.S. history. At the time I called it a ‶silent coup attempt.″ I think now we can dispense with the word ‶silent″ and just call it what it is – a coup attempt.

If you look up the definition of coup d’état in a range of dictionaries, you’ll see that common elements of definitions say it is a sudden and decisive change of government, often by illegal or violent means, and usually by a small group already having a power base within the government. The attempt to remove Trump from office meets all the elements of those definitions.

Now, thanks to the actions of Attorney General Bill Barr and acting Director of National Intelligence Ric Grenell, we get to see the actual words, actions, and sworn testimony of those involved in this attempted coup. Through these revelations, we also get to see the lies told, the possible sources of the leaks made to the media, and the motivations of the key actors. And more clearly than ever, we see how the attempt to undermine Trump leads directly back to his predecessor, former President Barack Obama.

Seeing Behind the Cover-Up

Most clearly we see how top officials in the FBI deliberately baited National Security Advisor Lt., Gen. Michael Flynn, a Trump confidante, into a perjury trap in an attempt to use him to get at Trump. There is evidence that this was done, if not with the knowledge of the former Chief Executive, with his tacit approval. Like a Mafia boss, Obama surrounded himself with plausible deniability while his henchmen carried out the hit.

You can read the words in the memos and recovered text messages yourself. But it’s not just me, or numerous other commentators, saying Flynn was deliberately railroaded into pleading guilty to a charge of perjury. Read what former FBI Special Agent James C. Gagliano says about it and how he lays out how it was done and how those involved deviated from standard FBI procedure to achieve their ends.

When you’re done reading that, there is Mollie Hemingway’s detailed timeline on the Federalist on how the railroading of Flynn, whom Obama despised since he had the temerity to oppose several of Obama’s key initiatives, began on Jan. 4 at the FBI and then was brought to the White House the next day. At the Jan. 5 meeting with Obama were most of the key players – FBI Director James Comey, CIA Director John Brennan, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, National Security Advisor Susan Rice, and Vice President Joe Biden. Also present was Sally Yates, Deputy Attorney General at the time who briefly became Acting Attorney General under Trump.

Yates later told the Mueller investigation that Obama opened the conversation that day by saying he had learned about Flynn’s conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and, “It was not clear … where the President first received the information.” Yates told the Mueller team that she was so surprised by what she was hearing that she was having “a hard time processing it and listening to the conversation at the same time.”

Yates also believed the information the FBI had supposedly developed on Flynn should be shared with the incoming administration, which Comey resisted, making up his own rule book in defiance of DOJ hierarchy and procedure and even of law.

Part of what shocked Yates was the extent to which Flynn’s identify and conversations, which as a U.S. citizen were not meant to be revealed in counter-intelligence activities conducted against non-U.S. actors, had been unmasked by so many people within the administration. That list includes more than 30 names, including all those at the Jan. 5 meeting, except Obama himself, as well as then Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power and Obama Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, and some U.S. ambassadors and lower level government officials. Whether any of these unmaskings, hundreds of them, as unsettling as they are, had a political intent or were illegal is a matter of debate and conjecture at this point. But what seems to be clear is the leak of supposedly derogatory but classified information concerning Flynn to David Ignatius of The Washington Post, and which formed the basis of Ignatius’s column on Jan. 12, 2017, clearly is illegal. The question is, who within the cast of characters leaked it?

Lest there be any doubt that all this subterfuge traces back to Obama, there is Susan Rice’s email to herself, drafted as Trump’s inauguration was under way on Jan. 20, 2017. It is so obviously a “CYA” move by Rice, herself confirmed as a bold-faced liar by her untrue statements made repeatedly to the American public following the Benghazi fiasco of Sept. 2012, to write this on the morning the administration was to change, and two weeks after the Jan. 5 meeting:

President Obama began the conversation by stressing his continued commitment to ensuring that every aspect of this issue is handled by the Intelligence and law enforcement communities ‘by the book’. The President stressed that he is not asking about, initiating or instructing anything from a law enforcement perspective. He reiterated that our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would by the book.”

By the book. Right. And Rice, like so many other of the miscreants in the conspiracy, revealed her own perjury when she previously claimed that she knew of no surveillance of incoming Trump administration officials. She is now saying that she wrote the email at the direction of Obama White House Counsel Neil Eggleston.

Applying Occam’s Razor

There is one thing about the whole Russia hoax (as it has been revealed to be from the Mueller investigation through these latest releases of names and messages) that never made sense to me. I’m a big believer in Occam’s Razor which, in simplest terms, says the most logical explanation for something is usually the correct answer.

The question that has occurred to me all along, a question I’ve asked both as a former diplomat and also as just someone who applies common logic to issues, is why the Russians would prefer Trump over Hillary Clinton. It was Hillary who presented her Russian counterpart, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, with the stupid “reset button” (which looked disturbingly like the red button to trigger nuclear missiles and which misspelled the Russian word for “reset” so it read “overcharge”) on March 6, 2009. And Obama himself who, on an open microphone on March 26, 2012, told outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to convey to returning Russian President Vladimir Putin that he would have more flexibility after his re-election.

Obama: “This is my last election. After my election I have more flexibility.”

Medvedev: “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir.”

It’s also clear that Obama knew of Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 elections (nothing unusual since they’ve been doing it for nearly a century now) by at least late summer 2016, and the entire sum of his efforts to get them to stop it was telling Putin, “Vladimir, cut it out.” Meanwhile, he chose not to inform Trump of what was suspected about Russian meddling.

If all that is not enough to raise questions, there is the whole saga of the hacking of the DNC computer servers in the lead-up to the 2016 elections, and how the FBI never was allowed access to those servers by the DNC, which turned forensic analysis of the hack over to CrowdStrike, a company tightly within the Democratic Party orbit. Without going into all the gory details of that saga, you can learn more than you want to know about it here. Among other suspicious developments, which point more to an inside job, U.S. security surveillance, or a third-party hacker than clandestine Russian government hacking, is that intel and forensics experts concluded the data likely was taken off the DNC computers faster than could have been possible by remote hacking. In other words, the data likely was pulled off onto a fast local device, like a flash drive or CD-ROM.

Occam’s Razor tells me that either the Russians were screwing around in general – it’s long been the intent of Russia and the Soviet Union that preceded the current federation – or that they were more likely to be supportive of Hillary than of Trump. Now Occam wasn’t a partisan of any major political party, but his logic sure makes sense to me.

No More Hearings or Reports

I think at this point we’re past settling for more hearings or reports. It’s time for prosecutions of the guilty parties in this conspiracy. While Sen. Lindsey Graham, as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, has scheduled hearings covering the FBI investigation into alleged Russian electoral interference and the Trump campaign to begin June 1, a criminal investigation into these same issues has been under way for some months by U.S. Attorney John Durham, appointed to the case by AG William Barr. Numerous commentators supposedly in the know keep telling us that indictments are likely to be forthcoming soon, and other reports point toward the end of this summer.

On thing is clear: Time is running short. Admittedly, criminal investigations and prosecutions can take time. That’s understood. But with just months remaining before the November elections, it’s essential that prosecutions begin sooner rather than later. Not only is it inevitable that there will be charges that the DOJ is attempting to skew the elections – by the same people who have worked hard for more than three years now to cripple the Trump administration – but if by chance Trump fails to win reelection, the entire legal drive to convict the guilty parties in this most sordid and unsavory chapter in U.S. political history will be ditched, and we’ll never learn of the true depth of corruption within the FBI, the intelligence community, and the Obama White House. This would be a tragedy for the country.

Assuming there will the indictments, how high will they go? Certainly there is indication that some mid-level officials, such as former FBI Counterintelligence Chief Peter Strzok and former FBI Deputy Director and Mueller Deputy Andrew McCabe, might be included in them. If there is to be any semblance of justice, higher ups, including Comey, Brennan, and Clapper, should be included, too. If you’re still naive enough to believe in an even-handed application of justice, the perjuries, abuse of power, and leaks of classified and official information that have gone on involving these parties are certainly sufficient to charge them.

But what about above that level? A prosecution of Hillary, for her security violations and mishandling of classified material and her obstrucion of justice? Of Obama, for being the source of so many of the misdeeds that went on and for looking the other way as violations racked up? Of Biden, for his deceits in trying to cover up his involvement in the political pogrom carried on against Trump, or for allowing his influence to benefit his son’s enrichment in Ukraine and in China? If you’re expecting justice to reach that high, I have a bridge to sell you. As I’ve said all along, it’s not going to happen. Barr has already said he doesn’t plan to charge Hillary or Obama with anything criminal, and that certainly extends to Biden as well.

As many and as fast as the cards have fallen, the top actors are going to be allowed to skate. And they’ll do so under full cover of the media umbrella that most of the mass media offer them, that political-media complex I’ve described. Some of us know that, had we done even a fraction of what these people have done, we would be behind bars. But that application of justice apparently doesn’t extend to the top levels of political actors in the country.

I’ve been right about the other key facts of the matters that have dogged the country the past three-plus years, and as much as I’d prefer to be wrong about this last one, I just don’t see it. But it would be gratifying to see even some of the key bad actors where they truly belong.

Photo credits: Featured image: Rob Carr, AFP, Getty Images, used under Fair Use

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