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Tue Jan 10, 2017, 08:29 PM

"A Veteran Spy Has Given the FBI Information Alleging a Russian Operation to Cultivate Donald Trump"

David Corn in Mother Jones 10/31

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/10/veteran-spy-gave-fbi-info-alleging-russian-operation-cultivate-donald-trump



Carlo Allegri/ZUMA
On Friday, FBI Director James Comey set off a political blast when he informed congressional leaders that the bureau had stumbled across emails that might be pertinent to its completed inquiry into Hillary Clinton's handling of emails when she was secretary of state. The Clinton campaign and others criticized Comey for intervening in a presidential campaign by breaking with Justice Department tradition and revealing information about an investigation—information that was vague and perhaps ultimately irrelevant—so close to Election Day. On Sunday, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid upped the ante. He sent Comey a fiery letter saying the FBI chief may have broken the law and pointed to a potentially greater controversy: "In my communications with you and other top officials in the national security community, it has become clear that you possess explosive information about close ties and coordination between Donald Trump, his top advisors, and the Russian government…The public has a right to know this information."

Reid's missive set off a burst of speculation on Twitter and elsewhere. What was he referring to regarding the Republican presidential nominee? At the end of August, Reid had written to Comey and demanded an investigation of the "connections between the Russian government and Donald Trump's presidential campaign," and in that letter he indirectly referred to Carter Page, an American businessman cited by Trump as one of his foreign policy advisers, who had financial ties to Russia and had recently visited Moscow. Last month, Yahoo News reported that US intelligence officials were probing the links between Page and senior Russian officials. (Page has called accusations against him "garbage." On Monday, NBC News reported that the FBI has mounted a preliminary inquiry into the foreign business ties of Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign chief. But Reid's recent note hinted at more than the Page or Manafort affairs. And a former senior intelligence officer for a Western country who specialized in Russian counterintelligence tells Mother Jones that in recent months he provided the bureau with memos, based on his recent interactions with Russian sources, contending the Russian government has for years tried to co-opt and assist Trump—and that the FBI requested more information from him.

"This is something of huge significance, way above party politics," the former intelligence officer says. "I think [Trump's] own party should be aware of this stuff as well."
Does this mean the FBI is investigating whether Russian intelligence has attempted to develop a secret relationship with Trump or cultivate him as an asset? Was the former intelligence officer and his material deemed credible or not? An FBI spokeswoman says, "Normally, we don't talk about whether we are investigating anything." But a senior US government official not involved in this case but familiar with the former spy tells Mother Jones that he has been a credible source with a proven record of providing reliable, sensitive, and important information to the US government.

In June, the former Western intelligence officer—who spent almost two decades on Russian intelligence matters and who now works with a US firm that gathers information on Russia for corporate clients—was assigned the task of researching Trump's dealings in Russia and elsewhere, according to the former spy and his associates in this American firm. This was for an opposition research project originally financed by a Republican client critical of the celebrity mogul. (Before the former spy was retained, the project's financing switched to a client allied with Democrats.) "It started off as a fairly general inquiry," says the former spook, who asks not to be identified. But when he dug into Trump, he notes, he came across troubling information indicating connections between Trump and the Russian government. According to his sources, he says, "there was an established exchange of information between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin of mutual benefit."

This was, the former spy remarks, "an extraordinary situation." He regularly consults with US government agencies on Russian matters, and near the start of July on his own initiative—without the permission of the US company that hired him—he sent a report he had written for that firm to a contact at the FBI, according to the former intelligence officer and his American associates, who asked not to be identified. (He declines to identify the FBI contact.) The former spy says he concluded that the information he had collected on Trump was "sufficiently serious" to share with the FBI.

Mother Jones has reviewed that report and other memos this former spy wrote. The first memo, based on the former intelligence officer's conversations with Russian sources, noted, "Russian regime has been cultivating, supporting and assisting TRUMP for at least 5 years. Aim, endorsed by PUTIN, has been to encourage splits and divisions in western alliance." It maintained that Trump "and his inner circle have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals." It claimed that Russian intelligence had "compromised" Trump during his visits to Moscow and could "blackmail him." It also reported that Russian intelligence had compiled a dossier on Hillary Clinton based on "bugged conversations she had on various visits to Russia and intercepted phone calls."

The former intelligence officer says the response from the FBI was "shock and horror."

-edit-

David Corn has been on this for a while - lots of reporting at Mother Jones.

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Reply "A Veteran Spy Has Given the FBI Information Alleging a Russian Operation to Cultivate Donald Trump" (Original post)
chimpymustgo Jan 2017 OP
MFM008 Jan 2017 #1
Generator Jan 2017 #2
chimpymustgo Jan 2017 #3
UTUSN Jan 2017 #4
chimpymustgo Jan 2017 #5

Response to chimpymustgo (Original post)

Tue Jan 10, 2017, 08:37 PM

1. HIGH crimes and MISDEMEANORS

He did it
They know it
We know it
Hes compromised
He may be a spy
he is a pervert
a grifter
a mentally sick individual.
They know it
He knows it (why so quiet????????????????)
WE know it.

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Response to chimpymustgo (Original post)

Tue Jan 10, 2017, 08:39 PM

2. Yeah I thought I had already read this was suspected

 

and so it was. BEFORE the election.

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Response to Generator (Reply #2)

Tue Jan 10, 2017, 09:12 PM

3. THat's the thing - this has been floated for MONTHS. The Manchurian candidate story

that he was cultivated by Russia. The financial ties - especially after Western banks stopped lending to him after all his bankruptcies. The Miss Universe pageant - in Russia - where he was most surely taped.

Incomprehensible!!

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Response to chimpymustgo (Original post)

Tue Jan 10, 2017, 09:48 PM

4. R#13 & K for much belated credit to David CORN

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Response to UTUSN (Reply #4)

Wed Jan 11, 2017, 12:40 AM

5. David Corn. Kurt Eichenwald, David Fahrenthold have been on the case.

The threads are starting to be woven.

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