Friday, September 27, 2019

Secret Tapes

The FBI failed. Under the now obviously ironic heading, "Investigating Donald Trump, FBI Sees No Clear Connection to Russia," The New York Times on Halloween 2016 reported

For much of the summer, the F.B.I. pursued a widening investigation into a Russian role in the American presidential campaign....

Law enforcement officials say that none of the investigations so far have found any conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government. And even the hacking into Democratic emails, F.B.I. and intelligence officials now believe, was aimed at disrupting the presidential election rather than electing Mr. Trump.

Robert Mueller also failed.  In what was objectively an awful investigation

Mueller did try to secure testimony from Paul Manafort and Corey Lewandowski and Steve Bannon and Hope Hicks and any number of hangers-on and sycophants that Trump surrounded himself with. But, the people in charge of Trump’s operations have always been Trump, his adult children, and his son-in-law.

Mueller didn’t say “boo” to those people....  didn’t interview them, didn’t subpoena them, and didn’t look like he even tried.

It's five months later, and we have learned that President Trump, in his role as a Cosa Nostra capo, told the president of Ukraine "nice little cache of weaponry you have to defend yourself against Russia. It would be a shame if something happened to it." Moreover, the

whistleblower alleged that the White House tried to cover up the evidence of Trump's behavior.

The report said that officials were told to take the transcript of Trump's conversation with Zelensky from the computer system in which it was stored to another classified system used for the most sensitive national security information.

The move potentially corrupted a repository supposed to be used only for the nation's most sensitive secrets with material being protected for a purely political purpose.

"This is a coverup," said Pelosi, a California Democrat.

There is no "alleged" anymore- and the coverup probably doesn't stop with Trump/Zelensky. There probably is someone else in that electronic vault as

Russia voiced hope Friday that the U.S. administration wouldn't publish private conversations between the two nations' presidents, like it did with Ukraine.

The rough transcript of Trump's call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy released by the White House Wednesday shows that Trump urged Ukraine to "look into" his Democratic political rival Joe Biden. The July 25 call is now the focus of a U.S. impeachment probe.

Asked if Moscow is worried that the White House could similarly publish transcripts of Trump's calls with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that "we would like to hope that it wouldn't come to that in our relations, which are already troubled by a lot of problems."

Speaking in a conference call with reporters, he emphasized that the publication of the Trump-Zelenskiy call is an internal U.S. issue, but added that it was "quite unusual" to release a confidential call between leaders.

The FBI failed, or  succeeded in failing, to get to the bottom of Donald Trump's relationship with Vladimir Putin before Robert Mueller whiffed at the hanging curve.  But there probably are transcripts, or memos, of Donald Trump's conversations with Vladimir Putin, which the Russian president wants to keep hidden lest he lose substantial leverage over President Trump.

The FBI, Robert Mueller, and Vladimir Putin don't comprise a "deep state" because they don't act in concert.  But Donald Trump, who as candidate and President has accused his enemies of comprising a "Deep State," ironically has survived because there are powerful forces who are determined that the American people don't discover state secrets.  The anonymous whistleblower is this generation's Alexander Butterfield, and national security demands that we not miss this opportunity to learn the full details of the relationship between Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump.

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