With all of the static and nonsense filling the news, it’s hard to know what the hell to think about the myriad of Trump/Russia investigations. With this piece I hope to present the information that is available as directly and simply as possible.
Donald Trump is under investigation for possible ties and collusion with Russia.
There. That’s seems pretty clear.
Of course, many members of his Cabinet and his Campaign/Transition team are under investigation as well. The nature of these investigations is not always clear. Partially because the nature of some of these agencies is to be secretive, but also because there are SO MANY AGENCIES CONDUCTING INVESTIGATIONS! Additionally the investigations themselves run the gamut from criminal to counter intelligence.
It is a constant Hulk-like anger inducing event to watch Republicans rail about leakers and seemingly not care AT ALL about potential crimes and treason committed by their leader.
The accusations may lead no-where. And that is a reality my Liberal friends need to be aware of. However, for the Right to choose to ignore the entire Intelligence Community is utterly insane, unpatriotic, and makes me wonder about where their loyalties lie.
Here is a quick summary of the investigations. (These include investigations being conducted by the FBI, the Senate Intelligence Committee, House Intelligence Committee, a Special Counsel led by Former FBI Director Robert Mueller, the Department of Justice, the Senate Judiciary Committee, and the House Oversight Committee):
The following are excerpted from Former Director of the FBI James Comey’s testimony to the House Intelligence Committee:
- The FBI is investigating the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election. (1)
- The FBI is investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government. (2)
- The FBI is investigating whether or not there was any coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. (3)
- The FBI investigation will include an assessment of whether or not any crimes were committed. (4)
- A counter intelligence investigation was started against the Trump campaign in July 2016. (5)
- The FBI is coordinating with other Intelligence Collection agencies from around the world in this investigation. (6)
- The FBI is investigating Russian citizens and officials to determine who was involved and what they did. (7)
- The Senate Intelligence Committee is looking into Russian interference in the 2016 election. (8)
- The House Intelligence Committee is investigating the Russian interference, and specifically Trump is a part of this investigation. (9)
- Department of Justice is investigating Paul Manafort (10)
- A special counsel led by Robert Mueller has been appointed to investigate possible links or coordination between Russia and associates of the Trump campaign but also “any matters that arose or may arise directly” from the probe. It would also extend to any allegations of perjury, witness intimidation or obstruction of justice uncovered during the course of the investigation. (11)
- There are also investigations being conducted by the Senate Judiciary Committee, and the House Oversight Committee. (12)
Trump associates had repeated contact with Russian Intelligence. (13)
Roger J. Stone Jr., a longtime adviser to Mr. Trump, has acknowledged communicating with Guccifer 2.0, an online persona believed to be a front for Russian intelligence officials involved in disseminating hacked Democratic emails. (14)
Carter Page, a foreign policy adviser to Mr. Trump, visited Moscow for a speaking engagement in July 2016 (15) Page was also the subject of a secret warrant last year issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, based on suspicions he might have been acting as an agent of the Russian government.
Michael T. Flynn, a Trump campaign adviser who went on to be his national security adviser, was paid more than $65,000 by companies linked to Russia in 2015, including an American branch of a cybersecurity firm believed to have connections to Russia’s intelligence services, according to congressional investigators. Mr. Flynn was forced to resign after misrepresenting his conversations with the Russian ambassador to the United States. (16) Flynn is also under investigation by the Pentagon’s inspector general and other congressional committees. (17) Flynn has also been the recipient of a grand jury subpoena.
Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign manager has done business in Russia and both law enforcement and intelligence officials have intercepted communications between him and the Russians during the lead up to the election. Manafort has also been the recipient of a grand jury subpoena. (18)
Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law and senior advisor, is under FBI investigation for holding meetings in December 2016 with Kislyak and a banker from Moscow. He is being probed due to the extent and nature of his interactions with the Russians. (19)
Other fun facts:
- FBI Director Comey claims that Trump asked him to drop the FBI’s investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn (20)
- Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, has called for Trump’s impeachment for obstruction of justice into the Russian investigation. (21)
- The House Intelligence Committee is also overseeing the Justice Department to make sure that no one there “impedes” the investigation (22)
- John Brennan, former Director of the CIA, told that FBI that “the intelligence community was picking up tidbits on Trump associates making contacts with Russians.” (23)
- Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and Jared Kushner both life on their security clearance applications, omitting meetings with Russians. (24) Sessions was forced to recuse himself from the investigation, but he ignored that and stayed involved anyway.
- In classified sessions in August and September, intelligence officials briefed congressional leaders on the possibility of financial ties between Russians and people connected to Trump (25).
Daniel Cashman, EAMP, MS (AOM)