Monday, March 9, 2020

A Closer Look At The FBI's Carter Page Investigation (Part 3)

In the first two parts of our closer look at the FBI's investigations of Carter Page, we focused on events beginning in March, 2016--about the time that Page joined the Trump campaign as a foreign policy adviser--and continuing to mid-September, 2016, the supposed time when FBIHQ first obtained "information" from Christopher Steele's so-called "dossier." That "dossier", as Devin Nunes has repeatedly stated, was in fact the product of the Clinton campaign's oppo research shop--Fusion GPS. The Fusion persons behind that "dossier" included Glenn Simpson and Nellie Ohr, wife of high level DoJ official Bruce Ohr, who was a close contact of Steele.

As we saw in Parts 1 & 2 of our closer look, the FBI's New York Field Office (NYFO) began its investigation of Carter Page after having been in contact with Page off and on beginning in 2009. During the same period, 2009 - 2013, Page was an asset of the CIA. What precipitated the falling out between the FBI and Page was the Three Russians case that the NYFO pursued against Russian officials based in New York. Page became a key witness in that case beginning in 2013 (the year that the CIA stopped using Page as an asset), but shortly before the trial was scheduled to begin there was a falling out between Page and the prosecution team (FBI agents and prosecutors from both the US Attorney in New York - SDNY - as well as DoJ).

Yesterday in the comments section to Part 2 there was an extensive discussion regarding Page's actual role in the Three Russians case, sparked by discrepancies between the complaint in the case (dated January 23, 2015 - my aging eyes mistakenly read that as 2013) and the press release issued by DoJ on March 11, 2016. The press release announced the guilty plea of the only one of the Three Russians who remained in the US, Evgeny Buryakov. The result of the guilty plea, of course, was that Carter Page was never called upon to testify at a trial. That should have been a happy ending for all concerned, but instead it was the beginning of an FBI Counterintelligence investigation of Carter Page that resulted in the FBI obtaining four FISA orders against Page. Those FISA orders, the final renewal of which was obtained by Team Mueller, became a key part of the FBI's (and Deep State's) effort to oust President Trump.

The discussion in the comments yesterday was very disturbing for me, as it opened new issues that--while probably not directly related to the Russia Hoax itself, or perhaps coincidentally or opportunistically related--nevertheless raised issues of prosecutorial abuse that have figured prominently in the Team Mueller Witchhunt. In this post I'll try to make sense of what happened between the FBI and Carter Page. That may not be possible, due to a lack of necessary information, but we may nevertheless get some idea of what may be hidden and what matters the Durham investigation may be looking at that are not public knowledge at this time.

To begin with, the FBI investigation of the Three Russians began in or about 2013. In January, 2015, arrest warrants were obtained for the three: EVGENY BURYAKOV, aka "Zhenya," IGOR SPORYSHEV, and VICTOR PODOBNYY. However, only Buryakov remained in the US. Here is the Wikipedia version of how Buryakov's case was disposed of, which I'll break down into bullet points:

* Buryakov's defense, financed by Vnesheconombank, argued that he was protected from the charges by virtue of being an official employee of the Russian government.
* This argument was rejected by Judge Richard M. Berman. 
* Buryakov ultimately pleaded guilty to the charges against him, and he was sentenced to 30 months in prison and a $100,000 fine. 
* Buryakov was released early, on 31 March 2017, and deported back to Russia on 5 April 2017.

Let's first look at the charges that were brought against Buryakov and then what he pled guilty to. The complaint brings two charges:

Count 1: Conspiracy to Act as an Unregistered Agent of a Foreign Government
Count 2: Acting as an Unregistered Agent of a Foreign Government

In other words, the criminal statute involved is FARA--the Foreign Agents Registration Act. We have seen the repeated use of FARA during the Russia Hoax, but never actual prosecution for that crime. Instead, FARA is used as a criminal predicate for other offenses--money laundering, false statements, conspiracy. In the event, Buryakov pled guilty, but NOT to a violation of FARA. Instead he pled guilty to conspiracy. You can read an after the fact account of the guilty plea from the NYT here. It should all remind you a bit of the Michael Flynn case.

With that background, let's take a look at Carter Page's involvement. Here's how I wrote it up in Part 1, quoting the Horowitz FISA Report, minus my comments:

An FBI counterintelligence agent in NYFO (NYFO CI Agent) with extensive experience in Russian matters told the OIG that Carter Page had been on NYFO's radar since 2009, when he had contact with a known Russian intelligence officer(Intelligence Officer 1). According to the EC documenting NYFO's June 2009 interview with Page, Page told NYFO agents that he knew and kept in regular contact with Intelligence Officer 1 and provided him with a copy of a non-public annual report from an American company. The EC stated that Page "immediately advised [the agents] that due to his work and overseas experiences, he has been questioned by and provides information to representatives of [another U.S. government agency] on an ongoing basis." The EC also noted that agents did not ask Page any questions about his dealings with the other U.S. government agency during the interviews. [180]
NYFO CI agents believed that Carter Page was "passed" from Intelligence Officer 1 to a successor Russian intelligence officer (Intelligence Officer 2) in 2013 and that Page would continue to be introduced to other Russian intelligence officers in the future. [181] In June 2013, NYFO CI agents interviewed Carter Page about these contacts. Page acknowledged meeting Intelligence Officer 2 following an introduction earlier in 2013. When agents intimated to Carter Page during the interview that Intelligence Officer 2 may be a Russian intelligence officer, specifically, an "SVR" officer, Page told them. he believed in "openness" and because he did not have access to classified information, his acquaintance with Intelligence Officer 2 was a "positive" for him. In August 2013, NYFO CI agents again interviewed Page regarding his contacts with Intelligence Officer 2. Page acknowledged meeting with Intelligence Officer 2 since his June 2013 FBI interview.
In January 2015, three Russian intelligence officers, including Intelligence Officer 2, were charged in a sealed complaint, and subsequently indicted, in the Southern District of New York (SDNY) for conspiring to act in the United States as unregistered agents of the Russian Federation. [182] The indictment referenced Intelligence Officer 2's attempts to recruit "Male-1" [Page] as an asset for gathering intelligence on behalf of Russia.
On March 2, 2016, the NYFO CI Agent and SDNY Assistant United States Attorneys interviewed Carter Page in preparation for the trial of one of the indicted Russian intelligence officers. During the interview, Page stated that he knew he was the person referred to as Male-1 in the indictment and further said that he had identified himself as Male-1 to a Russian Minister and various Russian officials at a United Nations event in "the spirit of openness." The NYFO CI Agent told us she returned to her office after the interview and discussed with her supervisor opening a counterintelligence case on Page based on his statement to Russian officials that he believed he was Male-1 in the indictment and his continued contact with Russian intelligence officers.
The FBI's NYFO CI squad supervisor (NYFO CI Supervisor) told us she believed she should have opened a counterintelligence case on Carter Page prior to March 2, 2016 based on his continued contacts with Russian intelligence officers; however, she said the squad was preparing for a big trial, and they did not focus on Page until he was interviewed again on March 2. She told us that after the March 2 interview, she called CD's [Counterintelligence Division] Counterespionage Section at FBI Headquarters to determine whether Page had any security clearances and to ask for guidance as to what type of investigation to open on Page. [183] On April 1, 2016, the NYFO CI Supervisor received an email from the Counterespionage Section advising her to open a *** investigation on Page. The NYFO CI Supervisor said that *** . In addition, according to FBI records, the relevant CD section at FBI Headquarters, in consultation with OGC, determined at that time that the Page investigation opened by NYFO was not a SIM, but also noted, "should his status change, the appropriate case modification would be made." The NYFO CI Supervisor told us that based on what was documented in the file and what was known at that time, the NYFO Carter Page investigation was not a SIM.

What caught my attention when I read this is that when the FBI learned that Page had informed various Russians that he was Male-1, the FBI got totally bent out of shape. So bent out of shape that they immediately began planning to open a counterintelligence investigation of Page. Now, I can appreciate that the prosecution would be very unhappy to learn that one of its key witnesses was also chatting with the other side--although not to their lawyers. However, being a knucklehead is not against the law, and Horowitz doesn't recount that the NYFO claimed that Page had violated any agreement with the FBI in doing what he did. Page would still have been able to testify. Certainly there is a considerable logical leap from Page telling Russians that he has cooperated with the FBI and NYFO suspecting that Page might be providing Russians with classified documents.

Page himself, however, has a different story of his falling out with the FBI. According to Page, the FBI wanted him to testify at the Buryakov trial--if the case came to trial--to things that Page claims were untrue. As Page has claimed on national TV, the FBI wanted him to perjure himself. Thus, at a minimum, Page and the FBI disagreed over either the actual substance of Page's interaction with Buryakov or the significance of that interaction. Now the interesting thing about this--if it is, indeed, the case--is that the FBI had extensive recordings as well as emails of those interactions. In addition, Page has been interviewed or interrogated extensively by the FBI and Team Mueller over the past several years, and without legal representation. It's a remarkable fact, when you consider the experience of Papadopoulos and Flynn, that Page has never been charged with making false statements.

But there's more to this story.

If we compare the complaint against Buryakov, dated January 23, 2015, with the DoJ press release, dated March 11, 2016, a little more than a year apart, some remarkable features emerge. Keep in mind, that the press release, in which Buryakov's guilty plea was announced, was issued just nine days after the dust up between Page and the prosecutive team.

In the complaint we read the following regarding Page's cooperation with the FBI (I have inserted "Page" for "Male-1"):

34. On or about June 13, 2013, Agent-2 and I interviewed PAGE. PAGE stated that he first met VICTOR PODOBNYY, the defendant, in January 2013 at an energy symposium in New York City. During this initial meeting, PODOBNYY gave PAGE PODOBNYY's business card and two email addresses. Over the following months, PAGE and PODOBNYY exchanged emails about the energy business and met in person on occasion, with PAGE providing PODOBNYY with PAGE's outlook on the current and future of the energy industry. PAGE also provided documents to PODOBNYY about the energy business. 

In the press release we read an essentially identical narrative, but with a major difference: Male-1/Page no longer appears. Instead we are introduced to a figure who never shows up in the complaint: UCE-1. UCE means "Undercover Employee," so we would naturally presume that UCE-1 is an FBI employee. And yet the narratives are essentially identical. Moreover, the press release leaves out any mention of anyone else who could possibly be Page. Here is how the press release runs:

During the course of the investigation, the FBI recorded Sporyshev and Podobnyy speaking inside the SVR’s offices in New York, known as the “Residentura.”
The FBI obtained the recordings after Sporyshev attempted to recruit an FBI undercover employee (“UCE-1”), who was posing as an analyst from a New York-based energy company. In response to requests from Sporyshev, UCE-1 provided Sporyshev with binders containing purported industry analysis written by UCE-1 and supporting documentation relating to UCE-1’s reports, as well as covertly placed recording devices. Sporyshev then took the binders to, among other places, the Residentura.

The basic similarities are striking:

* Page is an energy "consultant."
* UCE-1 "poses" as an energy "analyst. " 
* Podobnyy tried to recruit Page (the complaint has details).
* Sporyshev (Podobnyy's boss) tried to recruit UCE-1. Note, however, that the complaint portrays, through transcripts, Sporyshev as supervising Podobnyy's recruitment efforts. There is no mention whatsoever in the complaint of Sporyshev engaging in 'operational' activity. In fact, Sporyshev expresses concern lest his intelligence affiliation be compromised
* Page talked and emailed with Podobnyy about the energy business and met with him on occasion.
* UCE-1 met with Sporyshev to provide requested information.
* Page also provided documents to Podobnyy about the energy business.
* UCE-1 provided Sporyshev with binders containing documentation and analysis.

In the complaint, Page is a key player in Podobnyy's intelligence activity. No other figure remotely similar to Page--energy consultant/analyst, provides docs, is subject of recruitment effort, etc.--appears in the complaint. Thus, on March 2, 2016, Page is still a key witness, and is interviewed as such by the prosecution.

Nine days later comes the guilty plea and the press release. The same interaction of the Russians with an energy consultant/analyst who provides docs to the Russians and is the subject of a recruitment attempt is presented, but now the interaction is ascribed to a figure who never appeared in the complaint: an undercover FBI employee, UCE-1. Page is completely missing from this picture.

What's going on here? It appears that the press release deliberately removes Page and wants us to believe that there was some other basis for the energy angle to the case all along--an undercover FBI employee who springs seemingly out of nowhere. Or could the UCE designation be a simple subterfuge to disguise Page? If the case had gone to trial, would someone other than Page--an FBI employee--have actually shown up to testify about the energy angle? And testify to things that Page refused to testify to?

I don't have an answer, but I suggest that the example of Buryakov's meetings with regard to a "purported casino development project" in Russia may provide a clue. Those meetings, by the way, took place in Atlantic City in July and August of 2014. It's tantalizing to think that there's a Trump angle in this part of the story, but I'll leave that to others for now.

In the casino project, once again we see Sporyshev playing the role of supervisor--not engaging in meetings. This times he supervises Buryakov rather than Podobnyy. The complaint goes into considerable detail regarding this whole story, but the important point is this: In the complaint Buryakov is interacting with two Americans: CS-1 and Male-2 (so, we know Male-2 is not Page, who is Male-1). CS-1, of course, is Confidential Source-1, an informant for the FBI. Who is Male-2? Will both CS-1 and Male-2 appear in the press release?

Here's the relevant portion of the press release:

In the summer of 2014, BURYAKOV met multiple times with a confidential source working for the FBI (“CS-1”) and an FBI undercover employee (“UCE-2”).  Both CS-1 and UCE-2 purported to be working on a casino development project in Russia. 
During a conversation recorded on July 22, 2014, Sporyshev warned BURYAKOV that meeting with UCE-2 might be a “trap” but authorized BURYAKOV to go ahead so he could make a better assessment. 
During the course of the subsequent meetings, and consistent with his interests as a Russian intelligence agent, BURYAKOV demonstrated his strong desire to obtain information about subjects far outside the scope of his work as a bank employee.  During these meetings, BURYAKOV also accepted documents that were purportedly obtained from a U.S. government agency and which purportedly contained information potentially useful to Russia, including information about United States sanctions against Russia.

Once again, "Male" becomes UCE. Just as Male-1 became UCE-1 with regard to the energy business, in the "purported casino development project" Male-2 becomes UCE-2. I have no explanation for this. It makes operational sense--especially with a possible prosecution in view--to include an undercover FBI employee in the operation against Buryakov. The difference between this episode in the saga of the Three Russians is that in the casino episode there are always the same personae, albeit one has a shifting name. In the energy business episode there appears to be just one persona, and we know that that was Page--there's no indication of involvement in that episode on the part of an undercover FBI employee. Not until the press release.

There are DoJ docs out there that state that UCE means exactly what it sounds like--an actual FBI employee. That doesn't mean that DoJ or the FBI is legally required to stick to that exact meaning in a press release. On the other hand, it could make sense that the FBI would not want to give away in the complaint that they were using an undercover employee, and only reveal that later. But in the case of Page we know that he was never an FBI employee. If UCE-1 isn't or wasn't Page, was the FBI/DoJ pulling a fast one with the court in New York, counting on their ability to force a plea from Buryakov before any stuff hit the fan?

Page's involvement in the Three Russians case doesn't appear to connect per se to the Russia Hoax, although it may have been a factor that led to his involvement. We know that Durham has not interviewed Page yet, and that Page seems to have been cleared--at least two of the FISAs against him have been publicly renounced by the FBI. Is Durham digging into these murky antecedents? If no stone is to be left unturned it would seem logical. One more thing to keep in mind.


  1. Mark, you wrote "According to Page, the FBI wanted him to testify at the Buryakov trial--if the case came to trial--to things that Page claims were true"

    Did you mean "not true" or am I missing something...

    Otherwise, I'm still reading...

  2. Your efforts to ferret out the details are greatly appreciated.

    Worth keeping in mind, IMHO, is the sudden and urgent attention focused on CP at the point in time where CP tells NYFO and SDNY to "get stuffed" during the March 2nd interview regarding giving testimony that he considered to be perjurious.

    NYFO suddenly feels the need to open an investigation of CP, and contacts FBI HG for guidance on what sort of investigation to open, despite the fact that the Russian defendant has pleaded out and is going to jail without CP's testimony being necessary.

    Concurrent with these events, Carter Page has just joined the Trump Foreign Policy Advisory Team as a volunteer, and Trump mentions this using CP's name, in an interview with the NYT published 21 March 2016.

    This appears to beget a furious response in FBI HQ, and within about a day, as I recall, Comey, McCabe and Strzok all march up to AG Lynch's office to discuss CP.
    This is in a column reported by Sara Carter:

    >>Shortly after Trump’s announcement – sometime in the late Spring – Lynch, had met with former FBI Director James Comey, former Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and Strzok to discuss the news of Page joining the Trump campaign, according to a declassified memorandum.<<

    But wait, there's more .....

    AS you quoted previously, from the Horowitz report, NYFO claims to have done very little with regard to CP until HQ opens CH at the end of July.

    So, here we have a glaring contradiction: the FBI Director and his sidekick McCabe, and his sidekick Strzok (who is still working the MYE investigation on Hillary's email server at that point in time) go roaring up to AG Lynch's office to discuss CP! Yet NYFO, which is the one which has opened the investigation CP, does squat (determined his home address!) from March to the beginning of August!

    The Field office that opened the investigation shows no alacrity in getting after CP once they opened the investigation, according to the Horowitz report. Yet FBI brass and top CI people get their hair on fire the instant they hear CP is working as a volunteer on the Trump Campaign, and run as fast as they can to brief AG Lynch about CP!

    Something was going on, somewhere other than NYFO, that had the FBI Brass in DC very agitated about CP when they heard he was working for the Trump campaign, and we don't seem to know what it is, and it isn't documented in the Horowitz report, and it didn't seem to trigger any alacrity in NYFO, so far as Horowitz tells us.

    Yeah, I guess it's safe to say there's more to this story than meets the eye.

    1. I still tend to the view that the Deep State steered one or more of the CH subjects to the Trump campaign. That means they had someone inside the campaign or very close to it.

    2. MW wrote:

      >>I still tend to the view that the Deep State steered one or more of the CH subjects to the Trump campaign. That means they had someone inside the campaign or very close to it.<<

      That is an hypothesis which I have long suspected to be true.

    3. How about Admiral Rogers cutting the FBI off from illegal spying using NSA databases.

    4. @Mark

      The Carter Page story is, to paraphrase Winston Churchill, a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma, isn’t it? I applaud you for your efforts to get your arms around it, but, like you, I fear there is still much we don’t know.

      Here’s another small riddle. In August 2017 an obscure then-reporter for the Washington Examiner reported that Carter Page had been under a FISA warrant since…2014! Or did it? Read the article, which definitively discloses that Page had been under a warrant since 2014, but proceeds to provide absolutely no factual support for the headlined allegation. See: The reporter, one Ariella Phillips, has since moved to…you guessed it: CNN.

      FWIW, here’s my conspiracy theory takeaway. Apologies in advance for any factual mistakes – this narrative is seriously complicated…and convoluted.

      I discount the possibility that Page actually pissed the FBI off, although I concede that folks like McCabe seem more than capable of revenge (as has been suggested in the comments).

      I offer the following: After Page outed himself as Male-1, and the CIA/FBI burned him, he was useless for undercover work in/with Russia/SVR. Twenty years of undercover cultivation down the drain.

      But Page was not altogether useless to the conspirators.

      Let’s ask who didn't know Carter Page was a spook after he was burned? Answer: the Trump Campaign (other than Rogers and/or Clovis and anybody else inserted into the campaign).

      So the conspirators inserted Page into the campaign and then deliberately exposed him to some Russians (by Halper, for example) to support Steele's allegations, to help make the ‘collusion’ case against Trump and to provide grounds for the FISA warrant.

      In this imagined version of events, the NY Field Office wasn’t upset with Page when he supposedly balked at perjuring himself or deliberately outed himself, he was just temporarily sidelined.

      And when Page joins the Trump Campaign nobody’s hair ignites. Comey, McCabe and Strzok go to see Loretta Lynch not to excoriate him, but simply to discuss with Lynch the plans to infiltrate and then entrap the Trump campaign.

      I, for one, would not be surprised if Lynch was not simply an ‘outsider’ who needed to be fed some version of the conspirators' story.

      So what went wrong? The Collusion Hoax was intended to force Trump into capitulation without public disclosure. Perhaps this was what Comey was really up to when he went to Trump Tower in January 2017 and told him about the pee-tapes. But Trump wouldn't play. And then Buzzfeed published the Steele Dossier.

      The conspirators then doubled down to destroy Trump and protect themselves, resulting ultimately in outing Page, the theretofore loyal and long term CIA operative. Page was collateral damage. He was disposable.

      I think Page initially had a hard time accepting that he had really been thrown under the bus and his deer-in-the-headlights initial public appearances reflect this. But as it sank in that he had been totally betrayed by his handlers, his attitude has changed dramatically.

      His coming book, titled ‘Abuse and Power: How an Innocent American Was Framed in an Attempted Coup Against the President’, is scheduled for publication in August. The promotional blurb on Amazon says, “The chickens are coming home to roost for the corrupt officials, mainstream media, and Democratic operatives who ruined the life of an innocent American in an attempt to subvert our democracy.

      "Carter Page, the man at the center of one of the worst scandals in our country’s history, reveals how our nation’s top law enforcement officials abused their power and framed an innocent American citizen in their effort to take down Donald Trump. Page’s gripping account, which shows that the rot goes deeper than anyone realized, names the men and women who tried to pull off a coup and didn't care who got hurt.”

      Think about it.

    5. How did that story ever get published? There's no attribution whatsoever. My inclination is to not believe it or consider it a misunderstanding. There's no doubt that Page was picked up on FISA coverage of the Russians in 2014, but that's not being the subject of a FISA. I think that's probably the mistake.

      I would say that the Russia Hoax op was run out of FBIHQ and that the NYFO agents weren't truly in the loop--or not at the early stage. I would say that the people inserting others into the campaign would have had WDC connections, even if some might be based in NY. I agree that Page genuinely felt betrayed.

    6. Wasn't Rep Mike Rogers, House Intel Committee chairman, the "insider" who was betraying Trump and recruiting Page and Manafort? After he left the Intel committee, he went to work for CNN !

    7. Yes, NeverTrump, yet he had a key personnel/security related position in the campaign.

  3. Trump, supposedly a Russian agent, or influenced by Russian agents, and/or has members of his team that are Russian agents, is a very bad Russian agent.

    This whole thing is FUBAR. It is beyond comprehension.

    It is very interesting that the same President who denigrated Romney on the Russian enemy comment and told a Putin underling that things will get better once he, Obama, is reelected, that his administration uses Russia as a pretext to exert power and eventually interfere in a US presidential election. Even worse, is the fact, and it is, that Obama and anti-Trump supporters used Russia in an attempt to overthrow a US president.

    They may truly get away with this due to technicalities via counter intelligence investigation, but people will know and will remember.

    Our government has refused to learn the lesson of Timothy McVeigh and continues to this day to act in a hubristic way undermining our very country for raw naked power and destroying lives and careers in the process.

  4. Supplemental comment:

    Three possibilities:

    1. Comey (or his minions) hair burst into flames when he heard that CP was working on the Trump Campaign, and thus initiated the briefing about CP to AG Lynch,

    2) AG Lynch's hair spontaneously ignited, and she initiated the meeting with Comey and minions about CP,

    or 3) they, and/or their minions all had their hair spontaneously ignited concurrently.

    If we knew who initiated the meeting with Lynch re: CP, we might be able to figure this out.

    Consider this: how would Lynch know about CP before the NYT interview, adn why would she give a hoot about him? If she initiated the meeting with Comey, it indicates she knew much more than one would assume should be the case.

    Same argument applies to Comey and his minions; other than NYFO opening an investigation on CP, what is it they knew that made them freak out when they saw CP was on Trump's Foreign Policy team?

    1. To play devil's advocate, since I believe Comey went to Lynch in mid-April, after CP joined the Trump campaign, it's possible that Comey was informed of the investigation of CP by the CI people at HQ.

  5. Who initiated CP to volunteer for the Trump Campaign. Perhaps no one's hair was on fire, but rather now another chess piece could be played.

  6. -->when the FBI learned that Page had informed various Russians that he was Male-1, the FBI got totally bent out of shape. So bent out of shape that they immediately began planning to open a counterintelligence investigation of Page.<--

    So there's a period of years that CP is cooperating with CIA/FBI. We know that CIA broke off with CP when the SDNY is getting ready to indict the three Russians. Presumably, FBI briefs CP on his continued interaction and communication with the Russians. Since it doesn't appear that CP was told to cut off his interactions with the three Russians--the CI investigation of CP looks petty and vindictive (not impossible) or there's more to the story. Or both.

    Part of the narrative of little activity on the CP investigation is that the NYO was preparing for a trial.

    As Anonymous says just above, perhaps CP became another chess piece to be played due to fortuitous timing.

    1. There's another aspect--the FBI should have maintained regular contact with CP throughout that time period. You don't simply ignore a key witness whose whole business involves contact with Russian officials.

  7. Carter Page has been pointing fingers at the Buryakov case and Preet Braha in particular ever since the Nunes Memo dropped. He has stated on camera that there are "false pleadings" introduced into the Buryakov case. Taking Carter at his word, (since his word/reputation have been impeccable thru this saga)... that alone would reconcile the Male-1/UCE-1 controversy. And as you note Mark... Carter begins (in Buryakov) as a "simple witness" subject to Russian recruitment... who happens to also be discussed in COVERTLY OBTAINED RECORDINGS INSIDE OF THE SVR HQ (SCIFF) where the Russians talk about offering Page "millions" for "information"... which also happens to be the identical cover story for UCE-1, who is INTRODUCED into the pleadings ONLY on March 8th after Carter is REMOVED on March 2nd. Also note that the coveted SVR RECORDINGS OBTAINED FROM THE MOST SENSITIVE OF LOCATIONS (an intelligence coup)... ONLY EXIST DURING CARTER PAGE'S EXACT TENURE OF INVOLVEMENT IN THE CASE... .i.e. in a case that lasted 36 or more months, SVR recordings only exist for the months of Jan-June 2013.. bookend precisely within Page's involvement. Do the math.

    Also, see nifty explanation (with graphics!) here:

    1. Merci, Monsieur! You raise issues that I just wasn't able to get into.

    2. My compliments. I see you were all over that a year ago. I was concentrating on the inadequacy of PC for Crossfire Hurricane, rather than these anomalies in the Three Russians case.

      Here's a question. I noticed that one of the redactions in Horowitz blacked out the type of investigation that was opened. The redaction looks too long for "full" but too short for "preliminary" or "assessment". Moreover, why would they redact that? Very curious.

  8. One thing leaps out and has nothing to do with Trump, Crossfire Hurricane or any of the "big picture" politics; that is how the NYFO had not a smidgen of ethical qualms of using an investigation to punish someone for ostensibly not playing ball. This falls perfectly in line with McCabe's revenge aspect of the Flynn investigation. It would appear that this is a bona fide culturally acceptable use of Bureau resources. If true, which I assume it is since everyone involved is so casual about it, then the 'most FBI agents are good guys' no longer can be wielded to mitigate demands of, "Burn it down and salt the earth where it stood.
    Frankly I am more that willing to take my chances against the Russian Army (I wasn't all that impressed when they styled themselves the Red Army) or China's PRA without benefit of the "expertise" of these miscreants (FBI, CIA, They, the Russkies or the ChiComs, are neither as malicious or as craven as the DC minions and at least they won't try to hide behind the Law while working to enslave my children and grandchildren.
    Tom S.

    1. That's something that I found very disturbing. The first thing in this case that you have to question is why the NYFO didn't hold CP's hand throughout the period, to try to keep him on the same page--explain why he needs to restrain his urge for 'openness', which he talked about it seems in his first contact with them. Sometimes when things go bad, but not catastrophic, you have to just walk away having learned something. Possibly losing the Buryakov case was very, very far from being a catastrophe. Except in some twisted minds for whom getting a 'stat' is what life is all about.

    2. But they didn't lose; Buryakov plead out to a Conspiracy felony, and did time; feather in NYFO, and SDNY's caps.

      This is why I raised the question earlier of why did NYFO go after CP if it's only about him refusing to go along with the false pleadings made in the case, since they didn't need CP to testify after all.

      I could understand it (but still not condone it) if CP had lost the case for them, BUT HE DIDN'T!

      You really have to wonder if the real reason for opening an investigation on him was for something other than what Horowitz was told or found, and was something other than simple vindictiveness.

      ... like "dirtying up" a guy who was just announced to be a member of Trump's Foreign Policy Advisory Council with Russian intel "fingerprints."

      What is intriguing about such an explanation is it offers a potential insight into why NYFO did more or less nothing after opening the case until CH was opened at the end of July, then they turn it over to HQ CI to fold into CH.

      It is as if someone asked someone in NYFO to use this excuse to dirty-up CP, and then just sit on the investigation until things "ripened" so the HQ could open CH and fold CP's investigation into it.

  9. Mark, as you've noted (per Horowitz), Page advised NYFO "immediately" upon his first/initial contact with them in 2009 that he was Agency affiliated. The FBI nodded, and never asked or ran a name-trace across agencies until August of 2016 (when it was mandatory per FISA) which they then IGNORED/SHREDDED.

    As applies to Buryakov operation in 2013... this suggests Carter was working "on loan" from the Agency while FBI "pretended" they understood him as a civilian. They never ran trace in 2013, **or** opened up a CI invstigation on a man who was being discussed as a SVR recruit, and purportedly was acting semi-hostile to FBI agents. WHY NOT?! The answer given by NYFO to Horowitz was "we were too busy working on the case against the Russians". Yes. They said that.

    The REAL QUESTION is how the recordings in SVR HQ were actually obtained? I suspect some hitherto non-understood TECHNICAL penetration and perhaps Carter was being used to "mask" the source/method? All we know for certain is recordings ONLY EXIST during the time Page is involved, but "binders" seems too far a stretch. Could the "binder" cover story be the "false pleadings" introduced?

    1. I agree. In my day we would not have simply used a CIA asset in this way, knowing he might have to testify, without clearing it. That's different than simply talking to a guy who we know also talks to the Agency.

      Yes, I had a good laugh at the NYFO's response to Horowitz--who recorded their response without comment!

      I would say no, off the top of my head. The technical aspect is something that CP would certainly understand had to be protected. My first impression assumption is that he didn't regard the intel gathering activities--all basically non-sensitive--as worth prosecuting in the bigger picture of improving relations with Russia, which he favored. I suspect the prosecutors wanted him to spin his testimony much harder than he was willing to do. Remember--he characterized it as perjurious. I think he wouldn't say that about protecting a super sensitive technique.

    2. I at least agree with your idea that Page thought the activities 'not worth' pursuing criminally. Another interesting question re: Buryakov is WHY there was a prosecution at all? Why move for a criminal prosecution versus just pursue the CI element? It is my understanding that Buryakov is the first Russian agent to be "jailed" in nearly 40 years. If so, Why? The sensitive, mysterious SVR recordings were at the heart of this trial, the defense was arguing that the DOJ had "nothing" to tie Buryakov to SVR activities and was moving in their March 01 Motion in Limine to exclude "any/all references to SVR, etc" from the case... they were even moving for PRE-TRIAL RELEASE, arguing Buryakov was no flight risk!!! lol... this was all based on the Defense's knowledge that prosecution could not tie Buryakov to the SVR ring without the SVR HQ recordings wherein Podobny and Sporyshv were both caught DISCUSSING BURYAKOV as part of the 'conspiracy'... to introduce the evidence the that Defense was trying to exclude, the DOJ had to invoke the UCE story... Carter was called in the next day, he wouldn't sing whatever song they wanted him to, then 5 days later the DOJ dumps the "entire case" including the UCE cover story ... and apparently Buryakov is "satisfied", bc he pleas the same day.

    3. I dunno. To me, I agree that there's really no gain in prosecuting Buryakov--not from a professional intel standpoint. The win is learning their methods and priorities for collections.If you want a bit of publicity, just PNG him or something. Or PNG the two IOs retroactively. Why give away that we were able to record them in the residentura? That seems totally crazy to me. The whole thing doesn't make a lot of sense.

  10. Contingency planning for a long-shot Trump candidacy began in the Fall of 2015. Brennan's CIA coordinated this planning with Fusion GPS and some help from the Brits. At that time, they thought Jeb was the likely nominee, but wanted to be prepared to take-down any of the probable candidates. FBI quietly assisted in some of this planning and legwork.

    Then Trump started winning some primary delegates and there was an Oh Sh*t moment. Mayhem and panic ultimately led to a meeting in the White House in February 2016 in which Brennan was tasked with implementing what ultimately became known as the Russia Hoax.

    Brennan's CIA ran the lead in this caper, but used a lot of foreign intelligence service cooperation as a cutout to maintain some plausible deniability. Comey directly managed the FBI's continuing participation, but kept the circle very small.

    The fiasco that followed was largely due to the botched covert activities of the various participants (Mifsud, Halper, Downer, Veselnitskaya) who never produced the smoking gun that DOJ needed.

    This was a major league criminal enterprise from the get go, and it's purpose was to keep Trump out the presidency by any means necessary. Not rocket science.

  11. Cassander:
    I offer the following: After Page outed himself as Male-1, and the CIA/FBI burned him, he was useless for undercover work in/with Russia/SVR. Twenty years of undercover cultivation down the drain.

    Page did not "out himself" to the Russians as Male-1.

    The complaint (paragraph 32) makes it blatantly obvious that Page is Male-1. The complaint includes this sentence, written by Viktor Podobnyy in an e-mail that the FBI intercepted:

    [Male-1] wrote that he is sorry , he went to Moscow and forgot to check his inbox, but he wants to meet when he gets back.

    Of course, when Podobnyy read the complaint, he knew that Male-1 was Page. After all, Podobnyy himself wrote that sentence.

    I think that Podobnyy showed the complaint to Page, who agreed that -- of course, it's blatantly obvious! -- he himself, Page, was the person whom the FBI called Male-1.

    1. @Mike

      No disagreement.

      At the end of the day Podobnyy and therefore for all intents and purposes SVR knew Page was an agent. So at that point he was useless undercover, wasn't he?

  12. Per sone articles there were as many as 4 fbi miles in the Trump administration.

    One was Halper

    This is disturbing, but makes sense...

    >I still tend to the view that the Deep State steered
    >one or more of the CH subjects to the Trump
    >campaign. That means they had someone inside
    >the campaign or very close to it.

  13. Replies
    1. It seems that Carter Page gave documents to Evgeny Buryakov in a binder that was equipped with a secret device. Buryakov gave the binder to Intelligence officers who were stationed in the Russian Consulate in New York.

      The secret device in the binder enabled the FBI to capture conversations and e-mails that happened in the Consulate's Intelligence office.

      * Did Page know about the binder contained this secret device?

      * Why would the FBI expose this amazing trick merely to prosecute three Russian Intelligence agents?

      Perhaps the FBI officials who were conducting this amazing binder operation suspected that Page told the Russians much more than just that he was Male-1.

    2. More speculation:

      Perhaps Carter Page volunteered himself into the Trump campaign staff in order to protect himself from the FBI.

      If Page indeed cause problems for FBI counterintelligence, then he might have figured that his new status as foreign-policy advisor to presidential candidate Donald Trump might impede the FBI from immediate investigations of himself.

      As I remember, Page joined the Trump campaign shortly after he refused the FBI's request that he testify against Buryakov.


      I have been wondering why the FBI's New York Field Office concealed Steele's Report 94 from the Crossfire Hurricane staff for more than seven weeks -- from July 29 until September 19, 2016.

      The NYFO had been assigned to investigate Page for collaborating with Russian Intelligence to affect the USA's 2016 elections -- and Report 94 said essentially that Page was doing so.

      Perhaps the FBI's counterintelligence team in the NYFO office considered Page to be such a can of worms that the NYFO did not want the Crossfire Hurricane staff to learn much about Page.

      This is also why the Horowitz report does not explain what the NYFO did with Report 94 during those seven weeks.

    3. @Mike S

      Thanks for the recommendation of Monsieur America's tweets. I certainly now better understand the role of the Buryakov prosecution in the Carter Page affair and the similarities between the Carter Page case and the Felix Sater case. Thank you Mike (and thank you Monsieur America, if you're reading).

  14. Well, Mike Sylvester beat me to my comment- Page didn't out himself, the FBI and DoJ did that with the complaint itself.

    1. Actually, the complaint was sealed. I'm not sure at what point it was revealed, but I believe it would have been very close to the plea deal. As I understand it, the details that were provided to Buryakov's lawyer were heavily redacted, which is why his lawyer made the motion that eventually led to full disclosure and the plea deal.

    2. I have been wondering also why Michael Gaeta (FBI official stationed in Rome) sent Reports 80 and 94 to the FBI's New York Field Office instead of sending them to FBI Headquarters. I now think that the answer is the NYFO's relationship with Carter Page.

      Here is the sequence of events.

      Gaeta had been the FBI's handling agent for Christopher Steele for a long time. At the beginning of July 2016, Steele in London called Gaeta in Rome and said he wanted to give an important report to the FBI. On July 5, Gaeta flew from Rome to London, got Report 80 from Steele and flew back to Rome by the end of the day.

      Then Gaeta just sat on Report 80. A few days later, Steele called Gaeta and said he had another report. Gaeta told Steele not to give him any more such reports until further notice. Nevertheless, Steele sent Report 94 to Gaeta on about July 12.

      Report 94 says essentially that Carter Page is collaborating with Russian Intelligence to reveal embarrassing e-mails about Hillary Clinton.

      Now Gaeta sat on both Report 80 and Report 94. Gaeta did tell his supervisor, the FBI's Rome Legat, that he had these two reports from Steele. However, the Legat thought that Gaeta would send them rather promptly to Counterintelligence at FBI Headquarters.

      Gaeta sat on Reports 80 and 94 until July 28, when he sent them to the NYFO.

      Now it makes sense to me that the two reports were sent to the NYFO. Report 80 is relatively irrelevant, but Report 94 is about Carter Page, who was a person of great interest to the Counterintelligence team at the NYFO.

      The NYFO received the two reports, and several NYFO officials discussed them in a meeting on August 3.

      Then the two reports disappeared into oblivion at the NYFO. The Horowitz report's explanation of this disappearance is that the NYFO office decided that the two reports were not pertinent to issues of public corruption -- a nonsensical explanation.

      By the middle of September, the NYFO had accumulated four more Steele reports. We can assume that Steele sent the additional four to Gaeta, who forwarded them to the NYFO.

      All six Steele reports remained in oblivion at the NYFO office until September 19, when Andrew McCabe arranged for the NYFO to deliver them to the Crossfire Hurricane team in FBI Headquarters.

      Now it seems to me that one reason why the NYFO concealed these reports for seven weeks -- and wanted to conceal them even longer -- was because Carter Page was such a can of worms for the NYFO.

  15. Normally, the deeper you dig into something, the more answers you get.

    But in this entire Russia Collusion mess, and the CP saga in particular, the deeper we gaze, the more questions arise, rather than answers.

    One question that jumps out is "why did the indictment specify the mechanism by which they putatively obtained the recordings of the SVR agents inside their office complex?"

    IOW, why reveal the "trick" they claimed they used to get recording devices in and out of the SVR office, when that technique could be used over and over again in future counter-intel investigations?

    It is doubly odd, since that revelation, along with the specification of an email that Page sent to the SVR agent, effectively outed his identity as a cooperating witness with the FBI, at the very least.

    The only manner in which revealing the recorders hidden inside binders trick makes any sense to me is as a cover story for some other means by which the recordings were obtained, and which they FBI desperately does not want to reveal, nor wishes to cause the SVR to go snooping for them.

    And if that were the case, it brings us full circle to the point others have already raised here: why even bother prosecuting Buryakov at all? If prosecuting him results in burning CP and revealing an operational covert recording technique used to penetrate SVR offices, how is that prosecution worth that price? It doesn't make sense.

    Another wild speculation: did CP come up with the recording devices inside the binders idea on his own, and implement it unilaterally, w/o FBI knowledge until he turned over the recordings? Did FBI then decide to take credit for the brilliant idea, and asked CP just before the trial was supposed to take place to change his testimony and claim the FBI gave him the binders with the embedded recorders? Is that what they asked him to lie about?

    Or, as I speculated above, is there some OTHER means of recording they desperately didn't want to reveal, invented the binder story, and asked CP to lie about it?

    AS I said at the outset, the deeper we dig, the more questions we find, instead of answers.

    That in and of itself betokens something odd.

    1. Who thinks the Russians are so stupid that they'd be fooled by the binder cover story?

    2. Point well taken; I assume they are smart enough not to bring things into their Secret Inner Sanctum (SCIF) given to them by foreigners without scanning, probing, and x-raying them for hidden snooping devices, bombs, or leaky vials of coronavirus!

      But this brings us back full circle to the original question: why even discus the methods of recording collection in the indictment, or to go a step further, why even bother indicting Buryakov at all?

      Why tell them we have recordings of them talking inside their super secret smoking lounge?????

      It's at this point I start getting paranoid, and wonder if it was all part of a very clever ruse to document the Russian attempts to recruit CP, because somebody intended to use that as part of the Russia Collusion Hoax, and a FISA application on CP after he was taken on by the the Trump campaign.

      BTW, if that's what was going on, one must assume they were also trying to set up others who might join the Trump campaign with Russian "fingerprints." There is no reason to assume that CP was the only one being fitted for a Russian Collusion jacket.

  16. The history of how Carter Page and George Papadopoulos ended up working on the Trump Campaign is very interesting and it leads to questions about Sam Clovis and Rep Mike Rogers. I’ve spent the morning reading up on both of them. Here is what I've found on Clovis. I'll follow up in the next comment on Rogers.

    Clovis was career military, with stints in the Defense Department, various military contractors, and defense consultants. In 2010 he entered politics in Iowa and later joined the Trump Campaign in Iowa.

    Clovis has described how he came to join the Trump Campaign and his role on the campaign in three extensive interviews with FBI agents in connection with the Mueller report. See pp 26 et seq at Interestingly, much of the three interviews is redacted, including, for some reason, the entire 8 page third interview. So much for transparency.

    In August 2015 Clovis explained to the Washington Post (some might say a bit unconvincingly) that he joined up with Trump’s campaign because he was ‘fascinated’ by Trump. “It's been fascinating," Clovis said of Trump's rise, adding that he's so intrigued by Trump that he now watches MSNBC's ‘Morning Joe’ each day and tries to see his rallies live on television.” He describes the process in greater detail in his FBI interviews (linked above).

    Did Clovis have a pre-existing relationship with Rep Mike Rogers when he joined the campaign? Well, yes. By early 2015 they were working together in Iowa:

    An article in the Daily Mail suggests that after joining the Trump campaign Clovis 'recruited' both Page and Papadopoulos to the Trump Campaign: There is a more extensive version of how Papadopoulos was recruited in the Mueller Report:

    According to the Mueller Report (and again some might say a bit unconvincingly), Clovis hired Papadopoulos after merely googling him and discovering that Papadopoulos had a connection to the Hudson Institute.

    (Who else had a Hudson Institute connection? Rep Mike Rogers.

    While accounts differ, the Mueller Report states that Clovis affirmatively encouraged Papadopoulos to travel to Russia and engage with Russian officials. Specifically, in an August 15, 2016 email from Clovis to Papadopoulos, Clovis encouraged Papadopoulos to “go on that trip”. See page 92 of the Mueller Report and his Wikipedia entry, as well as

    Clovis has also stated elsewhere that he opposed meetings with Russian officials, but if he did also encourage Papadopoulos this could certainly raise questions regarding whether he was involved with the conspirators in creating a collusion narrative.

    1. Very interesting re Clovis and Rogers. I looked at Clovis quite a while back and thought at the time that he didn't fit the usual NeverTrump profile. But the foreign policy and "defense" connections to Deep State guys like Rogers that you outline does put a different light on that.

  17. Rep Mike Rogers (not to be confused with Adm Mike Rogers) is a former Republican Representative for Michigan's 8th congressional district. He served in Congress from 2001 to 2015 and from 2011 to 2015 he was Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. He was succeeded by… Devin Nunes. Before his election to the House, he served in the United States Army from 1985 to 1989 and from 1989 to 1994 he worked as a Special Agent with the FBI.

    Rogers has deep connections with the foreign policy and intelligence establishment. He is on the Board of Directors of the Atlantic Council, a distinguished fellow of the Hudson Institute, a member of the Aspen Cybersecurity Group of the Aspen Institute, a CNN News analyst and executive producer for the CNN program Declassified: Untold Stories of American Spies.

    I’ve tried to figure out the extent of Mike Rogers’ involvement in the Trump Campaign but the record on google is unclear. He did have the above-mentioned connection with Clovis. He appears to have been working on the Chris Christie-led pre-Election Day Trump transition team and was briefly involved in the post-election transition team. During this period he was mentioned as a possible Trump nomination for CIA director.

    However, he was abruptly and unceremoniously fired from the transition team on November 15, 2016. Notorious Deep State leaker and Wapo reporter David Ignatius described his departure in dire terms in a November 15 article, which also happens to mention a dinner party at Rogers’ home the night before he was let go, attended by…among others, John Brennan.

    The Ignatius article also reports that Rep Mike Rogers’ place as head of Trump’s national security transition team was taken over by…Devin Nunes.

    A week later Adm Mike Rogers made his momentous visit to Trump Tower.

    In May 2017 Rep Mike Rogers was mentioned as a candidate to succeed James Comey as FBI director.

    Does anyone think there is more than a little bit of evidence in the foregoing to suggest that Rep Mike Rogers was not exactly on the Trump Team?

    1. "Does anyone think there is more than a little bit of evidence in the foregoing to suggest that Rep Mike Rogers was not exactly on the Trump Team?"

      I think so: The Other Mike Rogers--Again?

    2. Haha. On me.

      Of course I read your excellent Other Mike Rogers post last December. And promptly buried it in my subconscious.

      The evidence you found for Rogers involvement goes way beyond what I was able to find this morning.

      But it really does reinforce my suspicion that Clovis was working for Rogers and that Clovis promoted the Collusion hoax by first hiring Papadopoulos and then encouraging him to meet with the Russians.

    3. You might be surprised at the number of times I've found that I wrote about something and totally forgot it. Senior moments! There's just so much.

      But I quite agree with your excellent point.

  18. There has been some speculation here about the relationship between Carter Page (Male-1) and an FBI Undercover Employee (UCE-1).

    One speculation is that the FBI inserted UCE-1 into the story because Page refused to cooperate in the prosecution of Buryakov? In other words, UCE-1 would testify falsely that he himself did what Page refused to testify.

    I liked that speculation for a while. However, there might have been huge problems if a trial had happened and if UCE-1 had testified. After all, the Russians knew that the actual person was Carter Page and that the person in the witness chair was a phony.

    Of course, no trial did happen, and UCE-1 appeared only in a later press release.


    Thinking about this, I have returned to my first idea that the FBI ran two separate operations against Buryakov et al. In one operation the FBI used Page, and in the other operation the FBI used UCE-1.

    The Page operation had the disadvantage that the FBI's control of him was looser, but had the advantage that he could testify at a trial with fewer consequences. In other words, Page might provide a plausible denial for the existence of UCE-1, who never would have to testify or be named publicly.

    The trial would be about Page giving the Russians some documents. Whatever UCE-1 did would remain unmentioned.

    Along those lines, I speculate that the magic binder was given to the Russians not by Page, but rather by UCE-1. Page was not even supposed to know about the magic binder.

    Along those same lines, I speculate further:

    The FBI officials conducting this operation came to believe that Page spoiled the operation. The idea that he spoiled it by admitting to the Russians that he was Male-1 is just a nonsensical cover yarn for the Horowitz report.

    I think that the FBI came to believe that Page told the Russians too much about something else. Perhaps Page told the Russians that UCE-1 was an FBI employee or that there was something fishy about the binders.

    Maybe Page did not actually tell the Russians anything of that sort, but the FBI came to believe that their binder operation was spoiled by Page's loose lips.

  19. The Fab Four:

    - The other Mike Rogers
    - Halper
    - Sam Clovis
    - FBI Whitehouse liaison (I remember reading about this, but I can't find a name. Seems to have been reporting to Comey).

    1. @Ray


      Joseph Mifsud
      Felix Sater

      be added to the list?

    2. No, because they were not “inside” the Trump Campaign, as informants for the FBI.

    3. From a John Solomon article, clues on who another fbi asset in the Trump campaign was:

      As the president-elect geared up to take over, the FBI made another move that has captured investigators’ attention: It named an executive with expertise in the FBI’s most sensitive surveillance equipment to be a liaison to the Trump transition.

      On its face, that seems odd; technical surveillance nerds aren’t normally the first picks for plum political assignments. Even odder, the FBI counterintelligence team running the Russia-Trump collusion probe seemed to have an interest in the appointment.

    4. Except that he wasn't actually in the Trump campaign.

    5. @Mark


      Strictly speaking, Ray, Halper wasn't in the campaign either, although he may have offered himself.

      A comprehensive list of FBI/CIA assets employed surreptitiously by the agents of the party in office to defeat the candidate of the party out of office would be a most interesting list.

    6. Just trying to be precise--not in any way suggesting that these other players are unimportant or even just as or more important. Certainly more important at this juncture.

  20. Carter Page says that DOJ/FBI asked him to testify falsely in the trial of Evgeny Buryakov.

    I speculate that Buryakov had tried to recruit, separately, both Page and UCE-1. Since DOJ/FBI preferred to keep UCE-1 out of the trial, DOJ/FBI asked Page to testify that he himself had said or heard some statements that actually had been said or heard by UCE-1.

  21. "All four Page applications relied on information from reports prepared by Christopher Steele for his employer, which Steele also gave to the FBI." ~Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, March 5, 2020

    Remind me again, Who was Steele's "employer"?

  22. Mrs Clinton's Testimony

    Mr. Durham: Did you or did you not ask your campaign's law firm to employ Fusion GPS to perform opposition research on your opponent?

    Mrs Clinton: I did not.

    Mr Durham: Then, please tell the Court who did?

    Mrs Clinton: I don't know who did.

    Mr. Durham: Did you or did you not know that Fusion GPS employed Christopher Steele, a former British MI-6 agent, to obtain information from Russian government officials and write reports on efforts by the Russian Government to conspire with members of the Trump Campaign to swing the election to Trump?

    Mrs Clinton: I did not.

    Mr Durham: Do you know that none of the information in the reports provided by Mr Steele to Fusion GPS and to the FBI has been verified?

    Mrs. Clinton: What reports?

    1. Of course you then also pull in principals at Fusion GPS, the law firm, and the campaign--at some point you'll get the answer. The serious point to this, however, is that it illustrates the amount of time Durham's investigation will burn through. What you left out is that at deposition or trial the Clinton lawyers would raise some objection at every step of the way.

    2. I think I was trying to make two (serious) points.

      1 Mrs Clinton will lie through her teeth.

      2 Yes. Getting to the truth, and to convictions, will not be easy.

    3. Cassander--I applaud your amusing take, and Mark can correct me, but the investigatory track for interrogation/deposition would work from small fry to large fry, i.e. from Steele-->Simpson/Frisch/FusionGPS-->Perkins Coie law firm-->Miss Hillary, presumably obtaining evidence of involvement/discussion/decision making/authorization at each step, so as to isolate and confirm the involvement of each.

  23. related:

    John Solomon reporting on Hannity radio moments ago that he believes that Barr and Durham will reveal in the next few months evidence that the Collusion investigation start as early as December 2015, may have been conducted against multiple GOP campaigns, and looked for any sort of Russian connections they could find. Also says there are additional instances of "wrongdoing" that are outside of the FISA process.

  24. More from Solomon on Hannity radio Thursday:

    He has two breaking stories later tonite --

    1. Obama holdover Acting AG Sally Yates told Mueller team she was extremely uncomfortable with how the FBI went after Flynn; specifically their failure to observe protocol of clearing agent interviews with Flynn through WH Counsels office first, and furthermore said the FBI could not articulate what they were investigating Flynn for at the time they were interviewing him. She found this troubling.

    2. KT McFarland, Flynn's deputy, reports that not only did she see the letter to Flynn from head of British National Security effectively disowning Christopher Steele, but she also received a phone call from his deputy a few days earlier, expressing the same sentiment, but she vividly recalls he went further and said: "sometimes it's hard to tell where British intelligence ends and US Intelligence starts..." McFarland interpreted this to mean that the Brits were trying to subtly admit to the nascent Trump administration they may have been involved with US IC in the early Russia Collusion investigation activity.

    1. The part about Yates is definitely true. Not only did Comey not clear the interview with the WH counsel, Yates was very angry that he didn't clear it with her. She had her own involvement, though, in putting out false narratives about the Logan Act, etc.

      Re McFarland, prior reports make it fairly clear that Steele was communicating about the Russia Hoax with Brit intel. Check this out:

    2. Agree re: Yates. The point Solomon makes is that if it was bad enough to upset Yates -- an Obama holdover who has her own unclean hands with regard to Flynn and her bogus "Logan Act" codswallop -- the FBI's behavior has to be pretty outrageous.

    3. True, but bear in mind that Yates' 'outrage' is also self serving.

    4. Yes; as a form of deflection/distraction from her own misdeeds.

  25. Missed this from last Sunday; John Solomon on Maria Bartiromo's show:

    John Solomon: Joseph Mifsud’s Attorney Confirms Mifsud worked for US Intel and Not Russia

    Solomon interviewed Mifsud's attorney; saw the deposition Mifsud made before going into hiding.

    Solomon mentions that Mifsud characterized his interactions with PapaD as an "operation to link him to Russians."

    IOW, it was a "dangle."

    Solomon says his money is on CIA being behind it.

    Now those two Blackberrys that Barr/Durham brought back from Italy take on a renewed significance.

  26. related:

    Look at what just happened while everyone is distracted by a virus:

    >>Techno Fog

    The DOJ moves to dismiss the charges against the Russian Company (Concord) who conducted the alleged "information warfare against the US"

    The troll case will be dismissed w/ prejudice.

    How embarrassing for Team Mueller.<<