The CIA really is out to get General Flynn
Feb 13, 2017 BY DAVID P. GOLDMAN PJ MEDIA,
How come no-one is accusing NSA Director Michael Flynn of taking bribes from Turkey’s dictator Recep Erdogan? Not long ago, they did. Last November 18, Commentary Magazine’s Noah Rothman called Flynn a “dubious choice” for the National Security Council because his consulting company had a Turkish client, adding that Flynn’s views on Turkey raised a “conflict of interest.” Flynn had published an article in The Hill on Nov. 8 warning that America’s dalliance with the messianic Turkish Islamist and alleged coup plotter Fetullah Guelen might undermine the country’s relationship with NATO, at a time when Russia was giving Turkey the full court press.
On Dec. 2, I wrote in Asia Times that Commentary’s Rothman probably was stooging for a CIA disinformation campaign against Flynn. Not only did Flynn propose to deep-six Guelen, a longstanding friend of the CIA, but he had blown the whistle on CIA incompetence in Syria. Flynn’s Defense Intelligence Agency produced a now-notorious 2012 report warning that chaos in Syria’s civil war enabled the rise of a new Caliphate movement, namely ISIS. For full back ground, see Brad Hoff’s July 2016 essay in Foreign Policy Journal: Flynn humiliated the bungling CIA and exposed the incompetence and deception of the Obama Administration, and got fired for it. If anyone doubts the depth of CIA incompetence in Syria, I recommended an account that appeared this month in the London Financial Times.
In November, Flynn warned that the U.S. stood to lose its Turkish ally, to the benefit of Russia–and got attacked as a Turkish agent. That doesn’t square with the current round of disinformation, which paints Flynn as pro-Russian. Flynn’s detractors rely on a fake-news media which forgets the story it spun a couple of months ago when it contradicts the story it is spinning today.
I don’t know why Flynn talked to the Russian ambassador about the incoming Trump Administration’s prospective policy on sanctions, or what transpired in the White House regarding mis-statements that Flynn may or may not have made about such discussions. Senior officials speak to their counterparts in other countries all the time, and for obvious reasons do not want these conversations to become public. The intelligence community, though, was taping Flynn’s discussions, and the transcripts (of whose existence we are told but whose contents we have not seen) were used to embarrass him.
A couple of observations are in order.
First, the allegation of various Democrats that Flynn violated the 1799 Logan Act is silly. No-one ever has been prosecuted under the Logan Act. It forbids US citizens from communicating with foreign governments “with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States.” Flynn reportedly was talking about prospective policies of an administration that would take office in a matter of days; it is absurd to construe such discussions, whatever they may have contained, as an intent to undermine disputes with the United States.
Second, two narratives are running simultaneously in the media which appear to support each other, but actually consist of entirely independent bubbles of hot air. One is that Flynn misspoke about his contacts with the Russian ambassador, an allegation I cannot evaluate but find neither important nor interesting. The second is that the “Intelligence Community pushes back against a White House it considers leaky, untruthful and penetrated by the Kremlin,” as retired intelligence officer John Schindler alleged today in The Observer. Not a single fact is presented in Schindler’s account nor in several similar accounts circulating in the media. What leaks? Penetrated by whom? Sen. Joseph McCarthy could do better than that.
Third, the CIA has gone out of its way to sandbag Flynn at the National Security Council. As Politico reports: “On Friday, one of Flynn’s closest deputies on the NSC, senior director for Africa Robin Townley, was informed that the Central Intelligence Agency had rejected his request for an elite security clearance required for service on the NSC, according to two people with direct knowledge of the situation.” Townley held precisely the same security clearance at the Department of Defense for seventeen years, yet he was blackballed without explanation. At DoD, Townley had a stellar reputation as a Middle East and Africa expert, and the denial of his clearance is hard to explain except as bureaucratic backstabbing.
Fourth, Gen. Flynn is the hardest of hardliners with respect to Russia within the Trump camp. In his 2016 book Field of Fight (co-authored with PJ Media’s Michael Ledeen), Flynn warned of “an international alliance of evil movements and countries that is working to destroy us….The war is on. We face a working coalition that extends from North Korea and China to Russia, Iran, Syria, Syria, Cuba, Bolivia, Venezuela and Nicaragua.” The unsubstantiated allegation that he presides over a “leaky” National Security Council tilting towards Russia makes no sense. The only leaks of which we know are politically-motivated reports coming from the intelligence community designed to disrupt the normal workings of a democratic government–something that raises grave Constitutional issues.
Flynn is the one senior US intelligence officer with the guts to blow the whistle on a series of catastrophic intelligence and operational failures. The available facts point to the conclusion that elements of the humiliated (and perhaps soon-to-be-unemployed) intelligence community is trying to exact vengeance against a principled and patriotic officer. When the Turkish smear against Flynn came out in November, I smelled a rat. The present affair stinks like a dumpster full of dead rats.
Laura Ingraham on Flynn Resignation: ‘This Was the Death By a Thousand Leaks’
Tuesday on Fox News Channel’s “Fox & Friends,” conservative radio talk show host Laura Ingraham reacted to the resignation of Michael Flynn that happened the night earlier.
According to Ingraham, leaks coming out of the White House were to blame.
“Long knives were out for Flynn almost the moment she was announced,” she said. “I heard this from back channels coming from the White House. Others have in Washington. That’s no big secret. But I really think this was the death by a thousand leaks. The leaks that were coming out of this administration and the transition before the administration were at a level I don’t remember seeing in quite some time.”
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor
Flynn Resignation Raises Tough Questions for FBI, Intel Services
The resignation of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn on Monday evening raises troubling questions about the role of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the intelligence services.
Flynn ostensibly resigned because he provided Vice President Mike Pence with “incomplete information” about a conversation he had with the Russian ambassador, which turned out to include a discussion of recent sanctions, contrary to his earlier denials. Trust is crucial; the resignation was warranted.
That said, the sanctions were largely bogus, and were applied not just to punish Russia for spying on the U.S. (both countries clearly spy on each other), but to substantiate the Democratic Party’s sore-loser conspiracy theory that Russia was responsible for electing Donald Trump.
There is no concrete evidence to support that theory, and there is no evidence (yet) that Flynn did anything but discuss sanctions in the most general terms. He did not break the Logan Act, nor any other law, apparently.
Whether Flynn deliberately concealed the contents of his conversation from Vice President Pence, or merely forgot what had been said, he was “caught” because the Department of Justice had been eavesdropping on the conversation. And one of the officials responsible for ordering the eavesdropping was none other than Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, who forced President Trump to fire her when she defied her duty to enforce his executive order on immigration, however, controversial.
Four possibilities emerge. One, which the media and the Democrats (largely one and the same) clearly believe, is that Flynn really was a potential Russian plant, perhaps indicating much deeper Russian penetration of the campaign and administration.
A second possibility is that things really are what they seem, on the surface, to be. Russia’s unusual response to the sanctions — declining to retaliate — was so bizarre that it warranted investigation, which then raised legitimate suspicions about Flynn.
The remaining possibilities are more worrying. The third explanation is that President Obama deliberately, and cleverly, used the bogus sanctions as a “blue dye” test to expose which strings Russia might try to pull to relieve them. Flynn, with a prior relationship with the Russian government, may have been a natural, innocuous point of contact — or perhaps something more.
The fourth and most worrying explanation is that the government was not merely monitoring the communications of Russian diplomats, but of the Trump transition team itself. The fact that the contents of Flynn’s phone conversation — highly sensitive intelligence — were leaked to the media suggests that someone with access to that information also has a political axe to grind.
Democrats are clamoring for a deeper investigation of Russian ties to Trump. But the more serious question is whether our nation’s intelligence services were involved in what amounts to political espionage against the newly-elected government.
We know that there are hundreds and perhaps thousands of federal bureaucrats already using shadow communications systems. How far does that “shadow government” go?
The FBI, CIA and other agencies ought to reassure Congress, or come clean.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. His new book, How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.
CNN’s Henderson: Some Might View Flynn Resignation as the Press Having Scored Points Against the WH
MICHAEL SAVAGE: FLYNN A ‘SCAPEGOAT’
‘The old world order wants perennial friction with Russia’
Michael Flynn is a “scapegoat,” contends talk radio host Michael Savage in the wake of the outspoken national security adviser’s resignation.
“The old world order wants perennial friction with Russia,” Savage told WND ahead of his nationally syndicated radio show Tuesday, “The Savage Nation.”
Flynn resigned late Monday after reports he had given Vice President Mike Pence “incomplete information” about his discussion with Russian officials regarding sanctions.
Pence, based on information from Flynn, had told media Flynn did not discuss sanctions with the Russian official.
Savage noted that President Obama was caught on a hot mic telling outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that Vladimir Putin should give him more “space” because Obama would have more “flexibility” to work with Russia after his re-election in 2012.
“Was there an outcry by the Lilliputians in the media then?” Savage asked.
“I see the demonization of Putin, Russia and Flynn as part of a campaign by neocons, the intel community and Democrats who want constant antagonism with Russia,” he said.
“It’s like firemen who start fires to justify their jobs.”
President Trump, after accepting Flynn’s resignation, tweeted Tuesday morning: “The real story here is why are there so many illegal leaks coming out of Washington?”
Flynn affirmed that thinking Tuesday morning when he was asked by Fox News whether the leaks were targeted, coordinated and possibly a violation of the law.
“Yes, yes and yes,” Flynn said.
Flynn is a retired Army lieutenant general who served as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency before becoming President Donald Trump’s national security adviser on Inauguration Day.
He was a strong critic of President Obama’s foreign policy, including his “politically correct” approach to the Islamic terror threat.
“We are tired of Obama’s empty speeches and his misguided rhetoric. This has caused the world to have no respect for America’s word, nor does it fear our might,” Flynn said in his keynote speech at the Republican National Convention in July.
Savage, a major supporter of Trump during his campaign, already has expressed concern that Trump’s inner circle is causing him to move too fast, leading to costly mistakes.
“I think Trump is in danger unless he wakes up to the fact that those around him may not be acting, let us say, in his best interest,” Savage told his listeners.
Savage said Trump is “moving much too fast and on the wrong issues.”
“He should have started with something less controversial than he did, and he should have gone a little slower,” said Savage.
Savage’s message of borders, language and culture was a fixture in the campaign, and Trump was a frequent guest on Savage’s show. Savage has described his latest book, “Scorched Earth: Restoring the Country After Obama,” as “an architectural plan for Trump.”
He is about to release a book on the new president, “Trump’s War: His Battle for America.”
Flynn Story Isn’t Over…He Was Involved In 2014, Connections To Obama And Clinton Now Surface
Feb 14, 2017 by Allison Hillman
The Trump administration is facing close scrutiny today as National Security Adviser Michael Flynn resigns over questions about conversations with Russia.
This is not the first time that Michael Flynn has been involved with Russia, nor the first time that he has had to leave his position because of it.
In 2014, Flynn was fired by then President Obama for a supposed clash in leadership styles. The timing of Flynn’s firing was suspicious even then. Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State, had been deeply involved with Russia up to that point.
Donations were pouring in to the Clinton Foundation from Russian donors. The donations increased as Clinton successfully brokered a deal with Russia’s state atomic energy agency, Rosatom.
Canadian bank records show four donations totaling $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation from the Canadian Company Uranium One, which had conveniently just been bought out by Rosatom. Those contributions were not publicly disclosed by the Clintons.
Shortly after, Bill received $500,000 for a Moscow speech from a Russian investment bank with links to the Kremlin that was promoting Uranium One stock.
The total donations from Uranium One shareholders to the Foundation exceeded $145 million just as Clinton’s State Department gave Russia control of about 20% of U.S uranium.
Less than a year afterwards, as the Clinton’s were drawing scrutiny, Michael Flynn, then the head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, was abruptly fired by President Obama. Throughout his short time with that administration he had been an outspoken advocate for intelligence sharing. He was also a leader in coalition and special operations intelligence activities.
President Trump brought Michael Flynn in with a clean slate, according to Kellyanne Conway. After the questionable firing in 2014 and a follow-up trip to Russia, the Department of Justice warned that Flynn might not be immune to blackmail from Russians.
Flynn’s talks with Russia occurred during the less than smooth transition between Obama and Trump. Obama had just issued sanctions against Russia for supposed interference in the 2016 election.
The world collectively held its breath, wondering if Obama’s foolishness would result in a war. There were certainly a sigh of relief when Putin did not retaliate. The question was, why?
We now know that Flynn was maneuvering behind the scenes, smoothing hurt egos and promising relief once President Trump was sworn in.
Flynn denies any wrongdoing stating, “In the course of my duties as the incoming National Security Advisor, I held numerous phone calls with foreign counterparts, ministers, and ambassadors. These calls were to facilitate a smooth transition and begin to build the necessary relationships between the President, his advisors and foreign leaders. Such calls are standard practice in any transition of this magnitude. Unfortunately, because of the fast pace of events, I inadvertently briefed the Vice President Elect and others with incomplete information regarding my phone calls with the Russian Ambassador. I have sincerely apologized to the President and the Vice President, and they have accepted my apology.”
Apology accepted maybe, but President Trump is not allowing Flynn to stick around long enough to do any more damage.
Conway reported that the biggest issue for their team came when Flynn misled Pence about the content of the discussions with Russia.
“In the end, it was misleading the vice president that made the situation unsustainable,” Conway told TODAY’s Matt Lauer. “The incomplete information or the inability to completely recall what did or did not happen as reflected in his debriefing of particular phone calls — that really is what happened here.”
President Trump has no choice at this point; any benefit of the doubt that he gave Flynn is gone. Solid answers about whether Flynn lied or just forgot are likely to be elusive.
We do know that Flynn engaged in a series of phone calls with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak the month before President Trump was sworn in. The appropriateness of those calls is being called into question by then Acting Attorney General Sally Yates. She and the Department of Justice were eavesdropping on the conversations.
The source of the calls contents, Yates and the DoJ, present a challenge. Yates was recently fired by President Trump for defying her duty to enforce his Executive order on immigration. It is more than a little suspicious that the DoJ and Yates held on to Flynn’s phone recordings until now, months after they took place.
If they truly were violations of the law, shouldn’t we have been hearing about them before Yates was even fired?
This convenient timing is reinforced when we consider the question, was the government monitoring Russian communications or Trump’s transition team? The fact that highly sensitive intelligence was leaked to the media suggests the latter.
Democrats are no doubt, cheering loudly at this “scandal.” In one large bomb they have cast apprehensions over Trump’s whole administration. When Flynn was fired in 2014, it became a convenient distraction for Clinton’s dealings with Russia.
It would certainly appear that the left has found a use for Flynn once again; allowing him to become part of Trump’s cabinet and only then releasing the conversations with Russia.
It is worth noting that Chuck Schumer, the Senate Minority Leader, warned then President Elect Trump to not take on the intelligence community. His dire and now prophetic prediction was, “Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you. So even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”
Clearly, the Democrats had a plan in place and were simply waiting for the correct time to release it. Flynn may be little more than a pawn in the grand scheme. On the other hand, evidence may still be coming that reveals he was fully involved from the beginning.
His long-standing relations with Russia made him perfect for this part either way. The way the information was leaked is actually a crime in itself but the Democrats are making sure to direct attention away from that. It was certainly one of their own who was responsible.
President Trump and his advisors must face this challenge head on. A clean cut with Flynn is just the first step. Trump has repeatedly said he is going to clean house, Yates was part of that. The time for that cleaning is now.
Everyone’s loyalty is in question. The Democrats excel at this kind of subterfuge and they are starting to detonate the land mines they have set up.
Their schemes to cast suspicions on Trump have largely failed. They are now resorting to some rather serious tactics. Indicative of their fear that President Trump will succeed, he needs to turn his attention to their panic to prevent any other scandals from erupting.
WHY THE CIA WANTS TO DESTROY FLYNN
The media have figured out they can’t bring down or impeach President Trump. So they are targeting his Cabinet officials and top advisers one by one. In the case of Michael T. Flynn, the media think they have hit pay dirt. The Washington Post has led the charge, using top-secret surveillance intercepts of communications between Flynn and the Russian Ambassador to the U.S. It’s more evidence that the CIA, and perhaps the National Security Agency (NSA), are out to destroy Trump’s national security adviser.
“The knives are out for Flynn,” said one administration official quoted in the paper. The knives are computer keyboards in the hands of scribblers for a paper whose owner, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, has a business relationship with the CIA. The Post is wielding the knives provided by anonymous intelligence officials.
Nobody knows this better than the Post’s Watergate reporter, Bob Woodward, who said on Fox News that the CIA was using unverified “garbage” allegations in a campaign to destroy Trump himself. Since Trump has survived, the campaign has taken a new form against Flynn, a close adviser to Trump on foreign policy who had campaigned with him and by his side.
At the heart of the story are secret surveillance intercepts of conversations whose disclosure is itself a violation of the law. In fact, these illegal disclosures to the press are far more serious than anything Flynn is accused of doing. But don’t think the media are going to investigate themselves for these illegalities. If they bring down Flynn, they will have wounded Trump. The sharks will smell blood in the water.
Remember that the FBI is said to have reviewed the intercepts and determined there was nothing illicit in what was discussed. That finding hasn’t stopped the CIA and the Post from continuing a campaign to sink Flynn. The so-called sensational news angle is that Flynn forgot what he told the Russian Ambassador and Vice President Mike Pence about the conversations.
The real explanation for the assault, as we have explained in several columns, is that Flynn, former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and a retired Lieutenant General, doesn’t trust the CIA. And the CIA clearly doesn’t trust him.
Meanwhile, in a newsworthy development that went mostly unreported here in the United States, Trump’s new director of the CIA, former Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-KS), traveled to Saudi Arabia to give a top Saudi official a CIA award for “counter-terrorism” named after a discredited former CIA director. The Saudi official was given the “George Tenet Medal” in recognition of his “excellent intelligence performance, in the domain of counter-terrorism and his unbound contribution to realize world security and peace.” Tenet is known for his embarrassing and false “slam dunk” comments about finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq before the U.S. invasion.
Pompeo’s tribute to the Saudi official, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, is astounding considering the evidence of the Saudi role in facilitating jihadist terrorism in Syria, a debacle that has helped to produce 500,000 dead and refugees streaming into Europe and the United States. Bin Nayef serves as Minister of Interior.
Rather than focus on Flynn, the media should be asking what Pompeo is doing paying tribute to a Saudi official whose regime is neck-deep in a conflict that has produced a major humanitarian catastrophe. And why is the CIA giving an award named after a director who failed in the intelligence mission of the agency he led?
Under these circumstances, if President Trump fires or forces the resignation of Flynn, it will be a huge victory for the CIA’s failed policies in the Middle East. These are policies Trump promised to reverse.
The assault on Flynn began on January 12, when Post columnist David Ignatius reported, “According to a senior U.S. government official, Flynn phoned Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak several times on Dec. 29, the day the Obama administration announced the expulsion of 35 Russian officials as well as other measures in retaliation for the hacking. What did Flynn say, and did it undercut the U.S. sanctions? The Logan Act (though never enforced) bars U.S. citizens from correspondence intending to influence a foreign government about ‘disputes’ with the United States. Was its spirit violated?”
With subsequent stories and various Trump administration comments, a “scandal” has been created, with Flynn’s fate hanging in the balance.
Despite the FBI clearing Flynn, the issue is now whether Flynn talked about sanctions and to whom. He apparently first denied this, and later acknowledged that the subject may have come up. With multiple Obama-created foreign policy problems on his plate, it may be the case that he gave some misleading information to Vice President Mike Pence.
The real issue, as Flynn has talked about publicly since he left the DIA in 2014, is the evidence of a U.S. role under Barack Obama and his CIA director John Brennan in facilitating an increase of radical Islam in the Middle East. He has cited the evidence contained in a DIA document, declassified and publicly released by Judicial Watch.
While Flynn has been critical of the agency for carrying out the Obama/Brennan policy of supporting Islamists in the Middle East, he writes in his book, The Field of Fight, about how the Russian intelligence services have also been involved in supporting radical Islam. This proxy war has damaged mostly Europe and the United States, and lies behind President Trump’s desire to curb immigration from Middle Eastern countries racked by Islamist violence.
Rather than clean house at the agency, Pompeo reportedly jumped on the bandwagon against Flynn, with the CIA or some other anonymous intelligence community insider leaking information that the agency had denied a security clearance for one of Flynn’s associates on the National Security Council. “One of the sources said the rejection was approved by Mike Pompeo, President Donald Trump’s CIA director, and that it infuriated Flynn and his allies,” Politico reported.
This is truly amazing since Obama’s CIA director himself should never have received a security clearance, and his policies were incompetent, if not anti-American. Brennan was a close friend and confidant to George Tenet and had served as CIA station chief in Saudi Arabia, where he reportedly converted to Islam. As CIA director, Brennan told a congressional forum that even voting communist, as he once did, was not a bar to employment at the agency. Brennan admitted voting communist when attending Catholic Fordham University in 1976. He was also involved in the cover-up of the Benghazi massacre of four Americans.
In his new book, iWar: War and Peace in the Information Age, Bill Gertz explains how the CIA has become “politicized,” dominated by a “liberal culture,” and resistant to probes of communist moles within.
Having had a pro-communist with Muslim sympathies once reach the top position of CIA director, it’s no wonder that the agency wants to get rid of Flynn. The CIA has a lot of baggage that needs to be exposed and swept away. The real mystery is why Pompeo decided to continue with the business-as-usual mentality and has not followed through on the President’s pledge to “drain the swamp.”