Yesterday I mocked Andy McCarthy for seeming to regard a handful of firings and a handful of tongue lashings from OIG--phrased in legalese and buried in the footnotes of monstrous .pdf reports that few read--were an appropriate response to the Deep State attempting to stage a coup. If that doesn't satisfy you, he suggested, go for indictments. I'm all in favor of the latter approach.
But then I was reminded by Titan 28 that John Solomon is telling the world not to hold its breath on prosecutions.
I'll paste in the relevant part of Lou Dobbs' interview of Solomon. However, I first want to express my reservations about what Solomon is saying.
John Solomon undoubtedly has good sources. OTOH, Bill Barr and John Durham are not numbered among those sources. Further, at this point I doubt that Barr and Durham's prosecutive intentions have been shared with Solomon's sources--I doubt they've been shared with almost anybody, since even President Trump has complained that he's not in the investigative loop.
As for the regular complaints that Durham has yet to interview Comey or Brennan, those complaints are pointless. It was always most likely that the main subjects of any investigation such as Durham's would not interview the main subjects until near the end.
With that said, here's the relevant portions of the Solomon interview:
Dobbs: You are confirming that less than two weeks into the Trump presidency, they should have known that Flynn wasn’t guilty because they’d already concluded that … and that he wasn’t working as an agent of Russia … that the Steele dossier was a fraud and a manufactured bunch of nonsense … and that FBI targets like Carter Page and Papadopoulos made exculpatory statements, and yet it rolled on.
Solomon: Between January 7th and January 30th of 2017 – President Trump had only served 10 days in office at that point – the entire underpinnings of the Russia collusion case were completely disproven. They knew that the Steele dossier had been disowned by its primary source. They knew that the primary targets they had been monitoring had made statements that undercut the main allegations that they were investigating, and then on January 30th, the FBI writes a memo to the Justice Dept stating flatly “Mike Flynn is not an agent of Russia.” That was what they were looking at at that moment – all of it feel apart – and yet we ended up with another two years and three months of investigations. It’s an outrage when people look at these documents.
Dobbs: And the interview records – the 302s – have disappeared. They can’t be found, or at least they won’t be found.
Solomon: That’s a very suspicious thing. The FBI keeps very good records, except in the case of Mike Flynn’s one interview. That should also trouble us all just like the altered document that they did on Carter Page. The FBI did not act like the FBI here. They acted like a band of criminals in some of the activities they engaged in.
It's not just suspicious--it's total BS. In fact, if Chris Wray says he can't find those docs, he should be fired. Period.
Dobbs: When you look at the Inspector General’s report which documents 17 outright lies by the FBI, you wonder which is the real FBI.
Solomon: There was a small group of people that hijacked this process, and we will find that they did it ultimately for political purposes, but it’s not the FBI only. I’m going to have a story next week on what senior Justice Dept officials were telling Bob Mueller a few months later after the case fell apart – how concerned they were about the FBI’s conduct. I’m going to break that story next week. You will not believe the comments that senior Justice officials were saying about the FBI’s conduct. Sadly, they didn’t stop them, but they knew what was going on was wrong.
I regard the reported statements of Sally Yates and Mary McCord as self serving. The fact is that at the time of the Flynn interview they personally went to the WH to accuse Flynn of lying to VP Mike Pence. No matter what they later said about Comey not following 'protocol' or about the Logan Act being a 'stretch' as a prosecutive theory--and 'stretch' is very much an understatement--they were key to getting Flynn fired.
Dobbs: I know that you are very much … confident in Attorney General William Barr and John Durham, the US attorney who he assigned to investigate the investigators of Spygate. But here we are more than a year later. There isn’t a work product. There isn’t a conclusion, and that has also been part of what has been the “new FBI.” Truth goes there to die, and reports? We wait patiently, and we’re told that they can’t comment because they’re carrying out an investigation and haven’t filed a report. It looks like subterfuge – a straight-forward [process] that allows them not to comment and not to ever deliver the truth.
Solomon: I’ve done a lot of reporting in this area, and here are the three things I hear. There has been an exhaustive investigation. There are bombshell new revelations that will be coming out, particularly about how early the effort to spy on Trump and maybe other Republicans was. I think you’re going to see it go back to December of 2015, perhaps. I think there are going to be new revelations … new discipline … new shaming of the people that oversaw this. I don’t there will be a lot of indictments. There may be some more firings. There may be one or two indictments, but we’re going to get some accountability. I do think that John Durham’s going to have a nice novel when he’s done here. We’re going to learn a lot more, and learning and exposing it hopefully will be one incentive not to do it again. But I think if people are looking for a lot of prosecutions, I think they will be disappointed.
Dobbs: Put me down as disappointed because if you can do what these politically-corrupt officials of the FBI and Justice Dept did – and get away with it – the American people have been fundamentally betrayed by also the investigators who are investigating the investigators.
If there isn't a lot more than "new discipline, new shaming" maybe "one or two indictments" I'll be far more than disappointed. I'll feel outraged and betrayed. I will despair for the future. And Trump should feel the same way. As it is, I still lean toward the view that true accountability is in the offing.
Prosecutions would be extremely difficult, because such high-ranking DOJ/FBI officials would be able to provide plausible legitimate reasons for their actions.ReplyDelete
Clinesmith might plead guilty without snitching on anyone else. Then he might be compensated under the table during the next few years.
I can be satisfied if the public simply will be informed about what actually happened. I doubt, however, that such information will be frank and adequate.
Of course I'm not suggesting that these would be easy cases, but after all that's what prosecutors get paid to do. I believe a conspiracy theory of prosecution would be persuasive.Delete
As for informing the public, I'm skeptical that at this point anything less than prosecutions would get enough people's attention to make a difference. As well, that it would be, as you say, "frank and adequate."
Really, all I have to go on are logic and emotions. My emotions go up or down, depending on the story.ReplyDelete
Logic tells me that Kevin Clinesmith is in trouble. He'll want to sing, if he's smart to earn some reduced time in prison. There have to be others in the same boat.
But to guarantee there will be prosecutions and accountability, I sure hope so, but who knows.
Let's see what June brings.
"DOJ/FBI officials would be able to provide plausible legitimate reasons for their actions."ReplyDelete
So be it. Charge 'em anyway, as that's by far the best chance, to get the public informed about what actually happened.
Many liberals are still in denial, about the magnitude of the crimes. Rub their noses in it all, 'til they can't wiggle around it, with a straight face.
If juries are hung, keep re-trying, to make the process become some kind of punishment.
At some point it becomes DoJ's ethical as well as professional responsibility to prosecute. Does the jury pool in DC really have a veto over contemplated indictments?Delete
Another point re: "reports" claiming Durham is shutting down his investigation soon. As we saw in the case of the Mueller Investigation in the months preceding the issuance of his report, there was a drip, drip, drip of prosecutors leaving the Special Counsel's office.Delete
There are no reports, credible or otherwise, claiming Durham's prosecutors and lead investigators are leaving the team, which surely would be happening if he were starting to wind down and NOT planning on indicting people.
Similarly, we know from Sara Carter's reporting that that Durham has empaneled a GJ. GJ are generally for getting indictments, although therye were used for they on the case of the MYE investigation, but I believe that's the exception, not the rule. If Durham were winding down without planning indictments, why did he empanel a GJ? Makes no sense, unless he's seeking indictments.
Also, consider that Solomon occasional mixes his personal opinion with what he's saying, espcially in an interview. Unless he says "my sources tell me ..." or something equivalent to that, whatever follows may be nothing more than an opinion, based on partial insight he has into an investigation that does not leak., and which has many moving parts, most of which are opaque to Solomon and the public.
What is most important is I'm not hearing other reports from credible to this point people who have been more or less correct for the past three years. Sara Carter, Hannity, Byron York, and many others fall into this category.
If they start saying the same things Solomon said in this interview, I'd be concerned, but not until then.
An afterthought: it may be that Durham has elected to only go after some small fish with indictments before the election in November, but ones who, if they can be flipped for sentencing consideration will give him the evidence he needs to bring conspiracy charges against the big fish AFTER the election. This strategy also takes the wind out of the sails of no-doubt planned Dem push-back narrative that indictments of Comey, McCabe, Ohr, Brennan, etc., would constitute an attempt by DOJ to influence the election, leading to Impeachment of Barr, etc. Such an approach also allows Durham to keep his cards close to his vest, and develop the evidence longer and more thoroughly, and to anticipate the defenses the "High-Value Perpetrators" (HVPs) will try to use to wriggle out of a conviction, and develop lines of evidence to counter such defenses.
(It also works politically: if Durham indicts and convicts everybody before the November election, it removes an impetus for why the public has to vote to keep Dems from taking over the Senate, WH, etc., though this should not be a consideration for Barr or Durham.)
This comment is somewhat off topic.ReplyDelete
I have been trying to develop my own opinion about the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Julia Skripal in Salisbury, England, on March 4, 2018. The British Government has blamed the poisoning on Russian Intelligence, in particular on two alleged operatives, Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov.
This matter is related to the USA's RussiaGate hoax because Sergei Skripal is suspected by some people (including me) of being a source for Christopher Steele's Dossier. Although Skripal is a former Russian Intelligence official who had been caught working for British Intelligence, it seems that Skripal had decided to return to his family in Russia. This return had been approved by the Russian Government, and his daughter Julia had traveled to England in facilitate that return.
There is speculation that the Russian Government would allow Srkipal's return without punishment if he would reveal publicly his own participation in the composition of Steel's Dossier. In those circumstances, Sergei and Julia were poisoned in Salisbury.
My current opinion is formed by a commenter named Paul on the Blogmire website. A key comment in that blog's most recent article is here.
It seems that a team of Russian Intelligence operatives -- including Petrov and Boshirov -- had come to Salisbury in order to exfiltrate Sergei Skripal out of England and back to Russia. This operation became know to British Intelligence, which tried to seize the Skripals shortly before they met with the Russian exfiltration team. The British team planned to drug the Skripals with fenatyl, but that plan was botched. Exactly what happened is unknown.
In the following hours and days, British Intelligence covered up the incident by staging a phony poisoning that could be blamed on Russia.
I'm not as conversant with all the details as you are, Mike, but I'm pretty well convinced that the official story isn't the real one--and that the real story would be a bombshell.Delete
Re my argument that a prosecutive theory based on 'conspiracy' - in the proper legal sense. What I mean is this. I agree with what you said as applies to the nitty gritty actions of the various officials. That's the defense they've been putting up in the media for months now. Stuff like, the 'dossier' may have been BS, but that's all hindsight and we were just concerned for the country--and you can't point to any one thing to prove otherwise. However, I believe that a big picture prosecutive theory that exposes the plot against the election and the administration of Trump could subsume those discrete details in a bigger narrative that would really grab a jury's imagination. My view.
In the Skripal poisoning case, a key element in the mystification of the public is an altered sequence of events. According to the British Government's official story, the Skripals went to a pub, called The Mill, at about 1:40 p.m. and then proceeded to a restaurant, called Zizzi, at about 2:35 p.m. Later, at about 4:15 p.m., the Skripals were found, allegedly poisoned, on a park bench.Delete
However, the Skripals actually went first to Zizzi and then afterwards to The Mill.
It seems that the Skripals were supposed to proceed from The Mill to a meeting with the Russian exfiltration team.
A poisoning incident took place in an area behind The Mill. In the following days, that area was closed off and was disinfected by a team wearing HazMat suits. The poison there was not Russian nerve gas, but rather (I think) fenatyl that the British team tried to use to drug the Skripals.
It seems that part of the British plot was to plant another couple -- who looked like the Skripals -- on the park bench. There, that other couple pretended to be poisoned and were taken away people pretending to be a medical team.
In other words, the Skripals actually disappeared -- or were supposed to disappear -- in the area behind The Mill. The public has been deceived to think that the Skripals proceeded to the Zizzi restaurant and then later proceeded to the bench, where they passed out from Russian poison.
In fact, the Skripals first ate in the Zizzi restaurant, then went The Mill pub, where they waited to proceed to their meeting with the Russian exfiltration team. Before they left The Mill, though, something happened to them in the area behind the Mill.
In the following hours and days, a false story of poisoning by Russian Intelligence agents was concocted for the public. This false story has not stood up to skeptical study.
Go to the Blogmire article and scroll down to the section labeled Speculation Corner.
Solomon's last response to Dobbs (as cited above) is entirely speculative. And in this case, he's not at risk for being wrong on the record by downplaying the number of indictments. No one is going to call him on it if many more people are indicted than he's implied.ReplyDelete
There's an art to making speculative forecasts to avoid looking stupid, i.e. don't over-promise. It's called positioning. Have your downside covered. Leave forecast error to the upside. Under-promise and over-deliver.
Good point. As EZ points out, as well--Solomon doesn't refer to any 'source' for that speculation. Obviously he talks to lots of people. But do they talk to Barr and Durham? Those are the guys who will call the shots here.Delete
Could also simply be a Barr/Durham head fake aimed at the suspects and carried out by Solomon.Delete
The problem we have, per Sundance, is the fact we have known a lot of this, many times in broad strokes, since Trump's campaign and start of his presidency.ReplyDelete
I do not think Barr will intentionally betray the country.ReplyDelete
I do think he may betray the country in being bogged down in legal mud or by believing America can not handle the possibility our government is soo corrupt and politically motivated towards Democrats that it will interfere in an election and try to overthrow a duly elected president (As if we do not already know).
On Hannity Tuesday night, he's reporting the stories about CV19 causing delays in Durham's probe are "completely false."
Now they're saying the FBI "lost" information relating to Flynn.ReplyDelete
Is this even remotely plausible or possible?
Just like Epstein's "suicide", they think they can just brazenly lie and get away with it... and it looks like they can.
I was discussing this with a friend (by email) yesterday evening. I don't find it either "plausible or possible." In this day of electronic record keeping, we're supposed to believe that a permanent record can vanish without trace?Delete
Chris Wray should be fired--for starters.
"Losing" a federal record is a federal crime.ReplyDelete
Yeah, it's total BS. Trump should not be talking about a pardon. The judge should be dismissing the case and sanctioning everyone at the FBI and DoJ. It's beyond unacceptable.Delete
I agree. General Flynn deserves to be cleared, not pardoned. Of course, I support a pardon as a last resort.ReplyDelete
It's almost like they admit the wrongdoing but expect us to accept the "lost 302" excuse.
And yet, none of the how many folks in DOJ/FBI (130,000?) have spoken up? No whistleblowers came forward?ReplyDelete
Wow, that's some power the left/deep state has.
Don't talk to me about how the "rank and file" are good people. I used to believe it.
The "missing 302" is the FBI equivalent of "the dog ate my homework."ReplyDelete
re: whistle-blowers in FBI; the public has no way of know how many or how few have come forward to Durham, especially when the investigation doesn't leak like a sieve. Furthermore, a well conducted investigation doesn't need whistleblowers to actively "step forward"; investigators will find most of them in the course of the investigation, or will not need them.
What they could use for a conspiracy charge is a few lower-level creeps to flip and rat out their superiors in the conspiracy, to save their butts from a long hard prison terms. Then prosecutors go up the food chain to the top. Klinesmith could be the lynch pin regarding the filing of fraudulent FISA applications. He's admitted to OIG he intentionally altered a federal record to support a fraudulaent FISA application. There's no way he can wriggle out of a conviction for at least one (altering a federal record) federal crime, and likely several. That makes him a prime candidate for being flipped, and ratting out whomever above him indicated they wanted him to do this or things like it to support a fraudulent FISA warrant application. And once he allocutes for a milder sentence, that becomes the evidence that gets prosecutors 90% of the way to convicting his bosses for being part of a criminal conspiracy. None of these people want to do hard time in a real prison filled with real violent criminals they may have helped to convict, or who simply want to take out their anger on whatever FBI or DOJ official is in a cell down the cell block from them.
Thus, Klinesmith and those above him who are implicated by him, will all have powerful incentives to plead out and proffer the next guy in the food chain.
And that's just the single instance we know about because of the OIG report. There could be many more we don't know about, and won't know about until indictments are unsealed.
The wheels of justice that grind slowly grind the finest.
I agree with it all.Delete
"re: whistle-blowers in FBI; the public has no way of know how many or how few have come forward to Durham"ReplyDelete
Sure, agree completely. I was referring to folks who would push back publicly against this "lost" lie. Haven't seen any pushback yet.
And of course, I know there are/were many good folks there, like our good host, but anyone who is currently working there, is not going to be willing to be destroyed by MSM for speaking out.
Hence my remark about "the powerful left/deep state".
Both of you are right, different emphasis.Delete
Primary Sub Source
Uploaded byStephen McIntyre
Must-read analysis by McIntyre and other researchers on the identity of the Primary sub-source (PSS) for the Steele Dossier.
They appear to have correctly identified who it really is; someone who have not previously heard about in relation to this saga.
Much detailed info in the analysis, including the conclusion the source in not "Russia-based" as FISA application claimed, but rather a Ukrainian, who was previously a KGB spy, living in the US near Washington
Also documents the fact that Klinesmith was made aware of this discrepancy, and to no one's retroactive surprise, he choose to keep it covered up.
Is this Oleg Smolenkov? I'll have to read later.Delete
No; Yuri Shvets is the most likely suspect. He fits virtually all known details of PSS, and presciently described the defects in the Dossier in great detail, and accurately predicted how it would be used to launch a straight-jacket investigation of incoming admin to ham-string it.Delete
OK. I'm working my way through.Delete
FWIW, I think the 'McIntyre Dossier' is credible. Especially the assertion that the PSS was a Ukranian former KGB guy who hates Putin and fed Steele Ukranian (not Russian) disinformation...to be used in an attempt to discredit and investigate Trump after the election...if Trump won.Delete
The idea that Steele's sources were Russians disparaging the guy they wanted to win has always been tough to swallow.
MW: there is much fodder for a post by you on this; hope you will do so, and mine the nuggets in the report.ReplyDelete
My initial reaction is: If Shvetz is PSS for Steele, then why would he be trashing the 'dossier' as early as 1/25/17?Delete
Likely because he never saw it until Buzzfeed published it a few days prior, and only then realized that what he had provided to Steele had been embellished, "revised and extended" by others, and that he passed along what he understood was barroom "gossip" but which Steele represented as stone tablet truth.Delete
At that point, though, he's hardly even a source. But notice that in Horowitz they don't say that PSS disavows the 'dossier,' just that he says he didn't claim it was gospel. That's a real difference. Nor do they show that anything in the 'dossier' appears peculiar to Shvetz' background. I don't find it convincing.Delete
Well, in fairness, they aren't claiming to have proven Shvets is PSS, only that he's a better candidate for that role than the others who have been proposed so far.Delete
Specifically, their claim is the PSS is not Russian, per se, but rather a non-Russian Soviet state national, and who has been living in the US.
Just saw a quote from Steele admitting he's known the PSS for many years.
And then there is this: