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Mike Flynn Will Bring Down Don the Con


A close look at Mike Flynn and how Don the Con treated him reveals the corrupt nature of their relationship and how it was exploited by Russia.  This is from an article in yesterday’s New York Times:

Mr. Flynn’s ties to Russian officials stretch back to his time at the Defense Intelligence Agency, which he led from 2012 to 2014. There, he began pressing for the United States to cultivate Russia as an ally in the fight against Islamist militants, and even spent a day in Moscow at the headquarters of the G.R.U., the Russian military intelligence service, in 2013.

He continued to insist that Russia could be an ally even after Moscow’s seizure of Crimea the following year, and Obama administration officials have said that contributed to their decision to push him out of the D.I.A.

But in private life, Mr. Flynn cultivated even closer ties to Russia. In 2015, he earned more than $65,000 from companies linked to Russia, including a cargo airline implicated in a bribery scheme involving Russian officials at the United Nations, and an American branch of a cybersecurity firm believed to have ties to Russia’s intelligence services.

The biggest payment, though, came from RT, the Kremlin-financed news network. It paid Mr. Flynn $45,000 to give a speech in Moscow, where he also attended the network’s lavish anniversary dinner. There, he was photographed sitting next to Mr. Putin.

A senior lawmaker said on Monday that Mr. Flynn misled Pentagon investigators about how he was paid for the Moscow trip. He also failed to disclose the source of that income on a security form he was required to complete before joining the White House, according to congressional investigators.

American officials have also said there were multiple telephone calls between Mr. Flynn and Sergey I. Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the United States, on Dec. 29, beginning shortly after Mr. Kislyak was summoned to the State Department and informed that, in retaliation for Russian election meddling, the United States was expelling 35 people suspected of being Russian intelligence operatives and imposing other sanctions.

American intelligence agencies routinely tap the phones of Russian diplomats, and transcripts of the calls showed that Mr. Flynn urged the Russians not to respond, saying relations would improve once Mr. Trump was in office, officials have said.

Mike Flynn was unreasonably pro-Russia; before the invasion of Crimea, he was allowed to cultivate a relationship with the Russians, who were not at the time viewed as quite so threatening or inimicable to American interests.  After Crimea, when Obama began to realize the extremes to which the Russians were willing to go in order to control or undermine the government of the Ukraine, Flynn persisted in his unreasonable pro-Russian stance.  Obama fired him, in part for this, and in part for his tendency to conspiracy theories and his racist attitude towards Muslims.

After being fired, Flynn cultivated even closer ties to Russia, and essentially went on their payroll without informing his former employers, the US government.  He thus kept his lucrative security clearance and at the same time became vulnerable to Russian blackmail.  Despite all this, and despite being specifically warned against Flynn by not only Obama but Chris Christie, Don the Con hired him and apparently instructed him to inform his Russian contact, Ambassador Kislyak, that Don would end the sanctions after he took office.  It is entirely possible that Flynn made these promises to Kislyak without specific authorization from Don, and only sought his approval afterwards.

Flynn’s relationship with Turkey, and his compensation from the Turkish government, was even more corrupt than his ties to Russia.  Flynn vetoed a plan which would have armed Kurdish forces and used them in the fight against the Islamic State in Mosul– all because the Turks were enemies of the Kurds, whom they had oppressed for over a hundred years.  Flynn’s actions as national security advisor were corruptly influenced by his support from Turkey as well as from Russia.

Don the Con’s treatment of Mike Flynn and his attempts to protect Flynn from FBI investigation show that Don had been compromised by his relationship to the Russians.  Don supported Mike, who was directly in the pay of the Russians, and his foreign policy towards Russia was influenced by his corrupt relationship with them.  Direct collusion with the Russians during the election campaign is not really an issue– Don already was compromised and continued to be influenced in a corrupt relationship.

Don the Con’s relationship with Paul Manafort is another manifestation of his corrupted attitude towards Russia.  The fact that he allowed Manafort, who had been deeply involved with pro-Russian Ukrainian politician Victor Yanukovitch, to work on his campaign, shows that he had no aversion to using improper methods in his election campaign and that he looked kindly on those who supported Russian aims.

The problem is not that Russia spied on the US, particularly the election campaigns of both parties.  That is to be expected.  What is a problem is that the Russians used the information they obtained about the Democratic campaign to damage the election prospects of the Democratic candidate– Hillary Clinton– whom they considered an implacable enemy.  This is known as “weaponized” intelligence, and is considered an act of electronic warfare.

In addition to this weaponized intelligence, they developed a network of people, mostly in Eastern Europe, who were compensated to produce fake news stories that attempted to damage Hillary Clinton by making her appear chronically or terminally ill, erratic, or simply too weak to withstand the demands of the presidency– besides being a liar, uncaring, hypocritical and so on.

There was no need for any direct communication between the Russians and Don or his election campaigners in order to make this campaign of lies and embarrassingly revealed private communications function as desired: to prevent the election of Hillary Clinton.

Don the Con is irredeemably corrupt.  What is important is not whether specific laws were broken but whether the Democrats can gain a majority in the US House to vote for impeachment.  “High crimes and misdemeanors” worthy of impeachment are what a majority of the House say that they are.

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