Saturday, June 8, 2019

Michael Flynn, Turkey, And His Serious Judgment Issues

Commenter Mike Sylwester points out an article by J. E. Dyer that appeared just yesterday: Serious question about a Flynn set-up, after Thursday’s Flynn/Manafort two-fer in the collapsing Spygate edifice. I had read the article yesterday and was turning it over in my mind. I'm sure it's been noticed that I'm not totally sympathetic toward Michael Flynn. Dyer's article may serve as a vehicle for explaining my attitude.

The relevant section of the long article--for our purposes--is the last section: "An unexplored aspect of a Flynn set-up". Dyer admits that the thesis she presents is still in its developmental stages, but she wanted to get it out because of the rapidly evolving status of the Mueller case against Flynn.

You can read the whole thing for the details. Basically, Dyer draws attention to Flynn's contract with a Turkish businessman, Ekim Alptekin, for the purpose of "repairing Turkey’s image in the United States." Of course you're asking, Ekim Who? Should I know this guy? The answer is, If you're Michael Flynn, former head of DIA, yes, you should either know who he is or find out who he is, PDQ:

... he’s a Dutch citizen of Turkish origin with an array of connections that include Stefan Halper, Joseph Mifsud, George Soros, and senior U.S. officials ...

Dyer points out that Flynn's company, Flynn Intel Group, entered into this contract, perhaps not so coincidentally, in August, 2016--just as the race to election day was getting under way in earnest. Flynn had been in the running for the Vice Presidential nomination and had played a very prominent role at the Republican convention. He continued as a foreign policy adviser. What Dyer finds odd about this is simply this: Why hire the Flynn Intel Group for this job of "repairing Turkey's image in the US?"

For an objective like “repairing Turkey’s image in the U.S.,” you want former diplomats and senators: people who can open doors in New York, on Capitol Hill, at Commerce, in Foggy Bottom.

People like Bob Livingston, for example.

Dyer is skeptical, and quite possibly for good reason:

The Flynn Group, with its roots more in security, intelligence, and analysis, didn’t look like a good fit for the supposed objectives of the client.  Yet near-simultaneously with the launch of Crossfire Hurricane, Flynn’s firm was contacted by a potential client who would end up linking Flynn to the same theme-bucket by which Papadopoulos was being pursued through Stefan Halper.  ... 
Given all this, it’s a good question whether Michael Flynn, undoubtedly a quick-minded, intelligent person with a highly-relevant background, realized at some early point that this approach from Alptekin was a set-up.

Then again, if Flynn went ahead and got involved with Alptekin in these dubious circumstances, maybe--just maybe--he isn't the quick-minded, intelligent person we've been led to believe he is.

In any event, as it turned out, “repairing Turkey’s image in the U.S.” involved talking up what a good guy Turkey's "democratically elected president," Recep Erdogan, is and why we shouldn't be harboring "Fethullah Gülen, a shady Islamic mullah residing in Pennsylvania whom former President Clinton once called his 'friend' ..." You can read all about it in an article Flynn wrote on November 8, 2016--the day of the presidential election. In March, 2017, Flynn revealed that he had been paid $530,000 for this "consulting work."

I'm not here to tell you any of this was in any way illegal. My point has to do with Flynn's poor judgment in getting involved in this situation and his seeming inability to make up his mind whether he could best spend his time trawling for clients or committing himself to the Trump campaign. This project--“repairing Turkey’s image in the U.S.”--was bound to be murky and controversial. That goes with the territory. Anything involving Turkey is bound to be murky and controversial, and with Erdogan and Gülen front and center in the mix, well, you're out on a limb from the start.

But maybe Flynn thought the smart thing was to cover all the bases. Maybe he didn't really think Trump would win, so better to hedge his bets.

My point is simply that Flynn should have made a choice. Accepting $530,000 to propagandize on behalf of Erdogan while still angling for a top spot in any Trump administration may not be illegal, but given that no Trump policy on Turkey had been enunciated it just shows questionable judgment. It may not be illegal, other retired generals do this type of lobbying/propaganda work for the highest bidder, too. But this close to the election, with a top national security post possible, it simply doesn't seem smart to me, it doesn't seem to me to show good judgment. My opinion.

But perhaps Trump's opinion, too, since in one of James Comey's memos--written after having dinner with Trump--Comey recounts that Trump stated that Flynn had "serious judgment issues."

None of this changes my view that Flynn was framed for a "crime" that he never committed. I still want to see him exonerated. But I also still think he was never a good fit for the Trump administration.


  1. I have been waiting for Rafiekian’s trial to commence. I have expected it to be delayed, setteled etc. In any case, Ms. Dyer is a bookmark of mine- I think I might have recommended her on this blog before, but am not sure- my bookmarks in this folder are vast at this point and my memory not what it was even 10 years ago.

  2. Oh, and on the "serious judgment issues":

    I have often wondered about that part of the Comey memo- it does suggest that Flynn was fired for some additional reasons not mentioned.

    1. It seems clear that right from the start Trump felt that Flynn wasn't staying on top of things the way Trump expected.

      This episode illustrates biggest failing: loyalty. Next to Sessions, Flynn was probably Trump's biggest personnel mistake. Those two probably hurt him the most. And both appointments were probably made out of mistaken loyalty to guys who supported him early on. Trump has been quoted saying that re Sessions, implying that he had been warned against making him AG but did so out of loyalty.

  3. Michael Flynnn's article, published on November 8, 2016, titled Our ally Turkey is in crisis and needs our support, hints at some potentially embarrassing information about the Clinton Foundation.


    .... Influential charities such as Cosmos Foundation continue their support for [Mullah Fethullah] Gülen’s charter schools.

    Incidentally, Cosmos Foundation is a major donor to Clinton Foundation. No wonder Bill Clinton calls Mullah Gülen “his friend.”

    It is now no secret that Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton’s close aide and confidante, worked for 12 years as the associate editor for a journal published by the London-based Institute of Minority Muslim Affairs. This institute has promoted the thoughts of radical Muslim thinkers such as Qutb, al Bana and others.

    [end quote]

    Perhaps this hint alarmed various people who worried about files stolen from computers associated with Hillary Clinton.


    When this article was written and published, most people assumed that Clinton would win the Presidential election. The article was published on November 8, Election Day 2016.

    The article hinted that the stolen files might continue to cause embarrassment to Clinton even after she became the new President. Various people might have wondered whether and how Flynn knew about stolen files that would embarrass Clinton.

    Furthermore, Flynn mentioned Huma Abedin, whose husband Anthony Weiner had a laptop that contained countless files of Hillary Clinton. Flynn's article could be interpreted as hinting that files on Weiner's laptop had been stolen by trouble-makers, perhaps known to Flynn.


    Flynn's lobbying -- in particular, this article -- had been commissioned by a Dutch company called Inovo BV, owned by a Turk named Kamil Ekim Alptekin. If Flynn had learned about stolen files that might embarrass Clinton, his sources of information might have included Altepkin.


    If Clinton had become the President, then she likely would have exerted much political pressure on Turkey because of its crackdowns on political opponents.

    Various people might have interpreted Flynn's article as hinting that President Clinton's political pressure might be countered, in part, by embarrassing information about donations that the Clinton Foundation had received from the Cosmos Foundation, which donated also to Gülen's charter schools in the USA.

    Flynn's article might hint also that the Cosmos Foundation had donated to the Clinton Foundation because Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had arranged for a remarkable number of H1-B visas to be granted to Turks who came into the USA to teach at Gülen's charter schools.


    Flynn's article touched on many subjects, but various people perhaps focused on -- and been alarmed by -- just the few sentences that touched on the Clintons, on the Clinton Foundation and on Huma Abedin.

    1. My suspicion is that what the Clintons feared most in Flynn was his knowledge of the background to ISIS. He hints at that with the reference to "radical Muslim thinkers such as Qutb, al Bana and others." He also touts Turkey as our top ally against ISIS. That idea, I think, would be anathema to the policies that the Obama admin had followed. They would not welcome Turkey expanding its sphere of influence. To be fair, nor would I. Nor would the Saudis, Israelis or Iraqis. Or Balkan countries. For all these reasons the Clintonistas would have been frantic to get rid of Flynn.

      And then there was the Clinton Foundation ...

      Huber is dealing with that. Right?

  4. It is sort of curious that a 3-star general who made up the ladder to head the DIA--and get fired for truth-telling against the narrative--was (apparently) inept at partisan politics and optics. As I understand it, flag officers are not nothing if adept at politics, reading tea leaves, etc. Flynn presents a conundrum of contradictions for someone of an analytical bent.

    I corresponded with JE Dyer many years ago just after she retired from the USAF. She's very astute.

    1. I've gone through the backlog of Dyer's writings on the whole Russia Hoax thing. I particularly appreciate her explanations of the new developments in handling technological surveillance. I've been away from that since 2006, and even then had limited access, naturally. But she's good on other things, too.

      I know people who worked under Flynn. He sounds like he was a bit of a loose cannon. For example, it sounds like he came in to DIA with the idea of totally remaking it in ways that weren't terribly realistic, as competition for the CIA. That's part of why he didn't last long, along with airing uncomfortable truths.

  5. Pedestrian observers of this situation perceive that Michael Flynn was lobbying for the Turkish Government, but that perception seems to be mistaken. Flynn actually was lobbying for a private Dutch company, Inovo BV, owned by a Turk named Kamil Ekim Alptekin.

    For that reason, Flynn did not register his lobbying company as an agent of the Turkish Government. Only later did Flynn register as an agent of the Turkish Government, and he did so only because his company appeared to be such an agent. In fact, though, Flynn was not lobbying for the Turkish Government and (as far as I known) has not been charged for failing to register as an agent of the Turkish Government.


    For what cause was Flynn lobbying in this situation?

    Perhaps various people who worried about stolen files perceived Flynn actually might be lobbying for an entity that had such files and that might use them to counter pressure that a newly elected President Clinton eventually might exert on the Turkish Government.

    The public face of this "entity" was the company Inovo BV, owned by Alptekin. Behind that public face, though, was an entity that possessed a collection of stolen files that included embarrassing information about the Clinton Foundation, the Cosmos Foundation, H1-B visas, and many other matters.

    This entity that possessed that collection of files was not the Turkish Government per se. Rather, the Turkish Government was separated from this entity by various cutouts, such as Inovo BV and such as Flynn's lobbying company.

    Various people thought that Flynn was involved in an international scheme to use stolen files to pressure Clinton, who seemed to become the next US President.


    Various people perhaps were trying to incriminate also George Papadopoulos in this international scheme. Papadopoulos was involved in policy disputes that involved Turkey.

    Various people were trying to involve Papadopoulos in the potential use of stolen files.

    Various people were trying to develop a case that Flynn and Papadopoulos were involved in a mysterious international scheme to use stolen files to cause trouble for Hillary Clinton.

    1. Dyer's attempts to establish connections between the targeting of Flynn and the targeting of Papadopoulos are interesting. Both, in different ways, may have been stepping on the toes of important factions in the Deep State.

      Given Hillary's flaunting of all security regs, it's probably just about impossible to know who may have some of that information you refer to.

  6. The dirty little secret of ServerGate was that many foreign intelligence services had hacked into Hillary's home server and planted software that cloned her files in real time and then transmitted these copies to offsite entities. The Weiner laptop was the recipient of this service as well, but that is another story. It wasn't the SoS classified files that anyone cared about either, it was the pay-to-play correspondence related to the Clinton Foundation that was the real goldmine. Flynn knew nothing of this, but he knew plenty about Obama's illegal spying via 702 searches in the NSA database. That is why he was targeted.

    1. I agree re the server, but I'm not sure I see reason for targeting Flynn as aware of the 702 abuse--removing Flynn for that reason wouldn't change the situation much, if at all. Too many others already aware.

    2. Rhetorical question:

      If "many foreign intelligence services had hacked into Hillary's home server and planted software that cloned her files in real time and then transmitted these copies to offsite entities", then why was she not indicted?

    3. Because she was only being "very careless" and not "grossly negligent"? The mysteries of the law!

  7. SpyGate is really about the illegal (and political) spying on US citizens, journalists, members of Congress, and foreign heads of State using the power of the NSA surveillance apparatus; and not just the part that was directed at the Trump Campaign/transition team/administration. Flynn not only was aware of this rogue operation, but he possessed evidence to prove it. As strange as this may sound, the real SpyGate scandal is actually a bigger deal than the attempted coup against a duly elected president.

    1. It remains that there were far more people than Flynn who were fully aware of this. If Adm. Rogers wasn't as ferociously targeted as Flynn was, then the question remains: why was Flynn targeted with such venom? My answer is that it has to do with his policy views and esp. re ISIS.

  8. Alptekin did not hire Flynn really for the purpose of "repairing Turkey’s image in the United States." That purpose was just a cover for the real purpose.

    The real purpose was to lobby officials in the US Intelligence Community to increase their scrutiny of Gülen. Flynn was a superb selection for such a lobbying campaign, because he had been the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency.

    In his article that was published on November 8, 2016, Flynn explained to the public -- not only to those Intelligence officials -- why Gülen should receive stricter scrutiny.

    Of course, Flynn had been communicating that message to those officials since August 2016, when he was hired by Alptekin, but now in early November he was communicating it to the public too.

    Flynn's article explained that Gülen is a radical, dangerous Islamist operating inside and against the USA. Flynn's article reported also that Gülen was bringing many fellow Islamists into the USA by obtaining H1-B visas so that the Islamists could teach in Gülen's charter schools inside the USA.

    Flynn reported to the public also that Gülen was obtaining more H1-B visas than even the Google company was receiving.

    In his article, Flynn hinted at an explanation of Gülen's ability to obtain so many H1-B visas for his fellow Islamists. Flynn pointed out that the Clinton Foundation had received donations from the Cosmos Foundation, which provided donations also to Gülen's charter schools. In other words, Flynn hinted to the public that Secretary of State Clinton had arranged for the H1-B visas as a reward for donations to her Clinton Foundation.

    Further, Flynn hinted to the public that he knew about Secretary of State Clinton's pay-to-play scheme because he knew the contents of some files that had been stolen from the computers of Clinton and her associates.

    In the middle of his article about Turkey, Flynn mentioned Huma Abedin:


    It is now no secret that Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton’s close aide and confidante, worked for 12 years as the associate editor for a journal published by the London-based Institute of Minority Muslim Affairs.


    This sentence about Abedin was irrelevant to Flynn's discussion of Turkey, but I think that the sentence hinted at the source of Flynn's information about the relationship between the Clinton Foundation and the Cosmos Foundation. The source of information was the laptop computer of Abedin's husband Anthony Weiner.

    Since August 2016, Flynn had been communicating this message to various officials of the US Intelligence Community. He was being paid to do so by Alptekin.

    By November 8, 2016, all this was known to the DOJ/FBI officials who had begun investigating Flynn no later than December 2015.

    1. "The real purpose was to lobby officials in the US Intelligence Community to increase their scrutiny of Gülen. Flynn was a superb selection for such a lobbying campaign, because he had been the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency."

      I have a hard time buying that. Most people in the IC regarded him as a dangerous nut. Via Wiki (yeah, I know that's not authoritative, but I also got that from people with first hand experience with Flynn):

      "He was reportedly effectively forced out of the DIA after clashing with superiors over his allegedly chaotic management style and vision for the agency."

      Based on this reading of Flynn, Flynn would be the very LAST person any foreign power or its agent would select to lobby the Obama Administration on any policy matter.

    2. Flynn had been an intelligence officer for more than three decades, ending his career as the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency.

      Whether or not he was disliked by many people, Flynn was an expert on the US Intelligence Community, and he knew countless officials there.

      Therefore, a now retired Flynn could be a superb lobbyist to convince Intelligence officials to sharpen their scrutiny of Fethullah Gülen.

      Flynn knew how intelligence requirements were created, developed and implemented. He was able to contact, inform and persuade relevant officials.

      Maybe those officials did not like Flynn, but he was informing them that Gülen was a radical, dangerous Islamist who was bringing many fellow Islamists into the USA by means of H1-B visas. That information could not be simply blown off, even by Intelligence officials who disliked Flynn as the messenger.

  9. In my previous comment, I argued that DOJ/FBI officials involved in the Crossfire Hurricane investigation knew, from not later than August 2016, that Michael Flynn had been lobbying US Intelligence officials to increase their scrutiny of Fethullah Gülen. Flynn had been telling US Intelligence officials that Gülen was a radical, dangerous Islamist who was bringing many fellow Islamists into the USA by obtaining for them H1-B visas to teach in Gülen's charter schools.

    Before November 8, 2016, Flynn's lobbying campaign was hidden from the public. On that date, however, Flynn's article was published. Flynn's article revealed also that the Clinton Foundation had received donations from the Cosmos Foundation, a major donor to Gülen's charter schools. Flynn's article hinted also that incriminating information about former Secretary of State Clinton's pay-to-pay scheme was found in files that had been stolen from the laptop computer of Anthony Weiner.

    Since Flynn's article was published on Election Day 2016, it must have been written and accepted for publication before Election Day. It's likely that Flynn wrote his article on the assumption that Clinton would be elected as the next US President.

    Flynn's article hinted to various people, who were able to read between the article's lines, that the information incriminating Clinton would be published if she eventually would act against Turkey's government for its crackdown on political opponents.


    How was this situation perceived by the Crossfire Hurricane (CH) investigators in November 2016? I speculate as follows.

    The CH investigators did not assume that Turkish Intelligence itself had stolen the files from Weiner's laptop. Rather, Turkish Intelligence had been given the files (perhaps for a price) by Russian Intelligence, which itself had stolen the files. Russian Intelligence had provided the files in order to cause future trouble between Turkey and the USA.

    In other words, the CH investigators perceived that Flynn was not involved in a Turkish Intelligence effort to steal files from Clinton and her associates. Rather, Flynn was involved more in a Russian Intelligence effort to steal the files and then to provide some of those files to people who would cause political and criminal trouble for Clinton, the presumed next US President.

    The CH investigators were trying to prove that Flynn had become involved in Russian Intelligence's efforts no later than December 2015 -- almost a year before the 2016 Presidential election. Flynn had become involved in order to help Donald Trump win the election against Hillary Clinton. Trump's campaign staff included four members -- Flynn was just one -- who comprised an "enterprise" to use stolen computer files to help Trump defeat Clinton.

  10. I have wondered why and how the CH investigators involved George Papadopoulos into the supposed "enterprise" that Russian Intelligence had inserted into Donald Trump's election-campaign staff. I now speculate that the CH investigators viewed Papadopoulos as follows.

    Papadopoulos was an expert in issues of the petroleum industry in the Eastern Mediterranean. On at least one issue, Papadopoulos was advocating an anti-Turkey policy. He was advocating that future pipelines be routed not through Turkey but rather through the Mediterranean Sea to Greece and perhaps to various islands.

    As such, Papadopoulos was interested in disparaging the Turkish Government as politically unreliable and contemptible.

    This attitude of Papadopoulos motivated him to volunteer to join Donald Trump's campaign staff as a foreign-policy advisor. In early 2016, Papadopoulos perceived that Trump was the candidate who was most likely to criticize the Islamist Government of Turkey and eventually to advocate the expulsion of Turkey from NATO. Papadopoulos figured that he might be able to provide to Trump facts and arguments that would move Trump in those directions.

    In these circumstances, Trump-hating officials in the US Intelligence Community perceived Papadopoulos to be a trouble-maker who was going around and talking with foreign-policy experts in order to collect dirt about Turkey. To the extent that Papadopoulos succeeded in finding such dirt to use against Turkey, he eventually might cause trouble for a NATO member.

    Papadopoulos was similar to Michael Flynn in that both were foreign-policy advisors to Trump. The CH investigators already figured that Flynn was working for Russian Intelligence, which wanted to cause trouble for Turkey's NATO membership.

    In these circumstances, the CH investigators began to hypothesize in early 2016 that Papadopoulos and Flynn were acting somehow in cahoots with each other in a common enterprise.

    The CH investigators did not have convincing facts; they had merely a hypothesis that seemed to them to be plausible. To test their hypothesis, the CH investigators began to dangle various provocateurs to Papadopoulos to test him. For example, what might he say in conversations that broached the subject of stolen computer files.

    These tests of Papadopoulos sufficed to convince the CH investigators that he indeed was a member of an enterprise on Trump's campaign staff. Of course, this "proof" was just ludicrous for ordinary people, but the judgement was being made by a tiny, self-isolated group of partisan, deranged, paranoid Trump-haters who were abusing their positions in the US Intelligence Community to hurt Trump and help Clinton.

    These officials twisted tendentiously every fact they found and thus developed a preposterous case that Trump had organized an enterprise within his campaign staff for the purpose of using files that had been stolen from computers of Clinton and her associates in order to ruin Clinton in the election race.

  11. Even though the Clinton files allegedly were stolen the Russia's Military Intelligence, James Clapper excluded the US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) from the analysis of the evidence.

    I think that Clapper generally did not trust the DIA to play along nicely with his analysis. Clapper could count on the CIA and FBI to appoint Trump-hating careerists to his tiny analysis group, but he could not count likewise on DIA.

    Clapper did not count on the NSA either, but he was compelled to include some NSA analysts. Predictably, the NSA analysts concurred with Clapper's analysis only moderately, with reservations.

    Another consideration in Clapper's exclusion of DIA was that his group was analyzing also evidence that one colluder in the theft and dissemination of the stolen files was the former DIA Director, Michael Flynn.

    Clapper had to consider the possibility that the analysts appointed into the group by DIA might like, respect and even admire Flynn. Such analysts might laugh aloud at the evidence against Flynn and might gossip to military colleagues that Clapper and his fellows thought that Flynn now was a witting agent for Russia's Military Intelligence service.


    As a retired general now working as a lobbying, Flynn probably was attending various conferences, where he managed to engage in conversations with active-duty military-intelligence officers. On those occasions, he would have suggested that they take actions to initiate, develop and implement intelligence requirements targeting Fethullah Gülen.

    On those occasions, Flynn might also have argued to those active-duty military officers that Gülen was obtaining H1-B visas for Islamist teachers for his charter school because the Clinton Foundation had received large donations from the Cosmos Foundation, which donated generously also to Gülen. Furthermore, Flynn might have revealed also that some Turks had evidence, in files stolen from Clinton and her associates -- evidence of Secretary of State Clinton's pay-to-play scheme.

    If Flynn told all this, then the military colleagues might not have kept this secret. Flynn's information might have spread secretly throughout the military leadership.

    Perhaps the DOJ/FBI investigators learned that Flynn was spreading such information, and that too was considered to be evidence that Flynn was colluding with Russia's Intelligence service to use the stolen files against Clinton.

  12. Mike, You could certainly could be right in your suppositions. That isn't my issue. For clarification purposes: the files you say the Russians stole are the files Assange says someone, not Russians, supplied to him, probably on a thumb drive. Is that correct?

    1. I doubt that Russian Intelligence stole files from DNC computers. Russian Intelligence had much higher priorities to worry about than DNC's office politics.

      I think that Wikileaks got those files from Seth Rich.

      Perhaps Russian Intelligence became involved in stealing files from the private server that Clinton set up as Secretary of State in order to avoid future Freedom of Information Act requests.

      The files on that server included very secret government documents and also her files related to her pay-to-play schemes to fund her Clinton Foundation.

      Some time ago, I commented in this blog about a claim that Podesta's files were stolen by an Intelligence official who had been assigned to study lobbying for Saudi Arabia. I don't remember the details for sure right now. I will try to find that old comment of mine, but I don't have time right now.

    2. On March 18, I wrote several comments referring to comments that a certain Norumbega had made on the Consortium News website.

      I summarized Norumbega's comments as follows:


      Norumbega links to a YouTube interview of Craig Murray, a former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan who has gone rogue and who has collaborated with Wikileaks. Murray indicates that the Podesta e-mails were leaked to Wikileaks by an employee of the US Intelligence Community who had been assigned to study John Podesta's communications because Podesta was lobbying for Saudi Arabia.

      As I understand the situation, this employee leaked Podesta's e-mails to Wikileaks on his own initiative, not because he was told to do so.

      If so, then the US Intelligence Community should have been able to identify the leaker.

      Since such a big deal has been made about the theft of Podesta's e-mails, Republicans in Congress should ask the US Intelligence Community to state whether Podesta's e-mails were being collected and studied by the US Intelligence Community when the e-mails were stolen.


      I found Norumbega's series of comments at Consortium News to be compelling.


      It's important to distinguish three groups of stolen files.

      1) Hillary Clinton had many files on a private server while she was the Secretary of State. These files included her abuse of her position as Secretary of State to compel foreigners to contribute to the Clinton Foundation. These files certainly were stolen -- perhaps by several foreign Intelligence services, including Russia's Intelligence service. However, these files were not disseminated through Wikileaks.

      2) Files on the DNC computers seem to have been stolen by Seth Rich, who sold them to Wikileaks, which subsequently published them. However, James Clapper's gang blamed this theft on Russian Intelligence hackers.

      3) John Podesta's e-mails were given to Wikileaks by a US Intelligence employee, as Norumbega reported. However, Clapper's gang likewise blamed this theft on Russian Intelligence hackers.

      I have not mastered this subject, but this is my understanding of it right now.

    3. Mike, Thank you. That does clarify matters. Thanks again to Mark for this blog. Highly informative and it saves most of us from spending a lifetime in front of a computer trying to get to the bottom of all this.

    4. Maria Bartiromo says to expect revelations this week. If I were Barr, I'd want to do that to set the House back on their heels a bit.

  13. Mark -- I have suggested on your comment page in the past that the presence of none of Page, Clovis and Papadopoulos on Trump's campaign make sense to me. You and others have doubted I'm right. No problem. I certainly have no superior information...just a gut instinct. I even went so far a few weeks ago as to read Papadopoulos' book which, I admit, notwithstanding some very strange happenings, pretty well makes 'his' case that he was entrapped. Notwithstanding he still comes off to me as one very strange dude.

    So, today, along comes Sundance suggesting that Page may have been a plant. See:

    Was he the only plant on the Campaign staff?

    There is certainly more to learn...

    1. I think you're putting things in an incorrect perspective. My view has always been that I consider it possible that the "mole" in the campaign recruited people like Page and Papadopoulos for a purpose. So, their presence on the campaign DOES make sense to me. Sundance, in his first paragraph speaks of Page being "unwitting" and "exploited" by the FBI. That supports my view, not yours. It's the CTH commenters who suspect Page of being a "witting" participant in the FBI/CIA hoax. Not once does Sundance refer to Page as a "plant" or suggest that he was a witting "plant"--only you and the CTH commenters do that. My read is that Page was a dupe, not a witting participant. If he had been a witting participant he would not have gone public with his complaints before the election--he would have been silent.

      The world is full of "very strange dudes." But, yes, there is certainly more to learn.

    2. That said, I will say I found Page's interview today with Maria Bartiromo deeply dissatisfying. He rarely gave her the answers she was setting him up to give.

    3. He's off. There's something there.

      Mark, I concede sundance did not directly accuse Page of being a knowing plant.

      But a main point of his post is that Page "states he was a long-standing source of information for the intelligence apparatus, specifically for the CIA for decades". It is not such a long hop (not even 'two hops') to wonder which team long-time CIA source Carter Page is on. As many of sundance's commenters do.

      I have no problem leaving the subject here. One day we will find out who Carter Page is.

      Mark, I am (and I'm sure all of us here are) very grateful for this blog and the work you do and have done. Thank you.

    4. Thanks, very much.

      When I first heard of Carter Page and his background that was the first thing that came to my mind--he's obviously a CIA source. The profile fit. It would have greatly surprised me if he hadn't been.

      However, it would be wrong to think that being a source amounts to "being on the team"--not, at least, in the eyes of the CIA. Or FBI. Nevertheless, the way he was apparently used as a dupe was very raw.

      Another factor which leads me to believe that Page was basically sincere in supporting Trump is that Page's expressed views on Russian-US relations (and no one doubts his sincerity) fit with Trump's idea of a rapprochement with an eye toward cooperating against China. Of course, that would have put Page very much at odds with the FBI/CIA.

    5. Mark writes:
      "It's the CTH commenters who suspect Page of being a "witting" participant in the FBI/CIA hoax. Not once does Sundance refer to Page as a "plant" or suggest that he was a witting "plant"--only you and the CTH commenters do that."
      Some CTH commenters are certainly "very strange dudes".

    6. I think it's a failure to understand these intel organizations as fundamentally bureaucracies, staffed with bureaucrats. Of course conspiracies can and do take place within bureaucracies, but it's much more difficult to pull off because most of the employees are basically very cautious. To pull a conspiracy off in that environment requires what Sundance (and Barr) calls a "small group," or what the FBI Guidelines defines as an "enterprise" within the larger organization. That usually means maintaining a fairly small circle of knowledge, and excluding outsiders (such as Page) from the circle of knowledge. I call Page an outsider because he really had no significant political or intel contacts to compare to those of the known coup plotters.

  14. Part of the problem is that many of these career officials such as Brennan and Clapper are political animals. I am a federal employee and my experience is that government leadership at the agency level is very left. Much more left than our society, in general. Another observation is that the more vocal of the rank and file are left, too. I'm not implying that the majority of the workforce is left as most people don't spout off their views. But the lefties are more vocal.

    As conservatives at my agency, the people that I am close to who share my views all know that we better not state in a blog or a town hall anything that challenges the zeitgeist. Hold traditional Christian beliefs about the practice of homosexual and even give a hint that you dissent and you will be smacked back in line, quickly. A good lesson to remember during "Pride" month.

    To circle back to my point, if Flynn held contrarian views, he would find himself persona non grata. Yes Men are very much appreciated. In my corner of the government it's all about spout the right platitudes, don't make waves, do what you're told and get your GS-15 and SES.

    1. "the lefties are more vocal."

      They feel empowered by the media.

      Maybe he thinks that'll keep him out of prison.

  15. Virtue signaling. I think it is an attempt to garner support in the more vocal sub-segments of society as though it will intimidate Barr into not pressing charges, if warranted.

    Fat chance of that.