Here's how this excellent interview went.
Q: When you read the notes, it looks like a trap. And it looks like, going in, they were trying to get [Flynn] to admit that he had broken the Logan Act--which, that never happens, that never gets prosecuted [Tolman grin at mention of the Logan Act]--or to catch him in a lie. Cuz, ultimately, they weren't really interested in investigating his contact with the Russians but instead they were looking for a referral to the Department of Justice--and get that guy out of his job.
Tolman: That's right. This activity is outrageous. Everybody's saying it, but here's why it is. It's *predatory.* This is not ... a group of FBI agents who are informed there may be a line of investigation they need to look into. Instead, they are *creating* that investigation. And why are they doing it? They see him, potentially in the role he was in, they saw him as a threat. Perhaps he'd be a threat to what they wanted to accomplish through FISA. Whatever reason, they targeted him, and you can see now, it's starting to come out, that it was a target.
In other words, as I've maintained in the past: Setting False Statement Traps Is Not Official FBI Business. This interview of Flynn had no official FBI purpose--it had nothing to do with official FBI authorities or business. The excuse of the Logan Act was barely even a fig leaf--it was a joke, and a bad one at that. That excuse never rose to the level of a good faith belief that the interview had a legitimate FBI purpose. Nor was the FBI seeking information from Flynn for use in some actual legitimate investigation. The pretext for the interview was simply that the leak--probably an FBI authorized leak to begin with, and certainly one they gave a wink and a nod--had caused a public stir. Flynn fell for that. But the interview itself sought no information the FBI didn't already have and that was legitimately their concern--it turned out to be no more than a memory test for Flynn. And because his memory was claimed not to be up to snuff he was called a liar and was prosecuted. "Predatory." It is not official FBI business to conduct memory tests. That is not within the scope of FBI authority or duties.
The next question focuses on the enormous pressure that Team Mueller was able to exert over Flynn to coerce a guilty plea. The question ends up: "Does Lt. General Flynn now have some leverage to go for exoneration?" Listen to Tolman's response:
Tolman: Yeah, couple of things, very important, there. People plead guilty when they're innocent. Why do they do it in the federal system? Because the federal system has what's referred to as the trial penalty. If you take them to trial you're risking many, many more years in prison. Decades. And they can do it. They could do it in this case. They could create a sentence that he would be facing ... decades in federal prison. So there's enormous pressure. So he pleads guilty thinking it'll be probation, he'll get this behind him, only to learn and realize that his lawyers didn't serve him well, there were conflicts of interest. He's now feeling that he's stuck, he hires a new lawyer and she aims at one thing, one thing alone: She wants to see the underlying documentation that justifies what they did. That's called 'exculpatory evidence', what they found. Usually you find that kind of evidence and it suggests some sort of innocence. But here it suggests innocence *and* misconduct by the FBI. It's outrageous!
The final question is prefaced by a video clip of Devin Nunes saying "Clearly General Flynn is gonna have a civil rights case. ... Secondly, hopefully there's gonna be some prosecutions for this matter." So, the question goes, re Priestap's notes, which suggest strongly that Priestap thought the "game playing" was at least ill advised, perhaps even legally wrong: "James Comey and Deputy Director Andrew McCabe were in that meeting. What will happen to them?"
Tolman: So, a lot of people are throwing out the phrase, 'obstruction of justice.' That's *not* the only issue for these individuals. If they knew going into this that they were setting up and creating this crime that wasn't actually there [please refer again to my comments above] then they made representations to the grand jury, and then they made representations to the court--all of those can have criminal consequences. Keep in mind, the Supreme Court in 1971 said that an individual like Flynn can go after agents that do this kind of thing--knowingly violate someone's constitutional rights. It's called a 'Bivens action.' And I'm pretty certain, if this case gets dismissed, that'll be the first thing he does.
A Bivens action is not necessarily straightforward in all cases, but I believe Tolman is correct in this case. There have been, in relatively recent years, restrictions placed on Bivens actions by the Supreme Court. Nevertheless, in this case, where there is such strong evidence of a conspiracy to use the "color" or cover of federal law to knowingly violate Flynn's rights, acting outside of any plausible authority, that Flynn probably has a strong case. And a case that any lawyer would love to present to a jury. You can read about Bivens actions here.
This is what the conspirators are facing: the strong potential for crushing civil and criminal liability with all the attendant legal costs and gut wrenching consequences for personal lives. That's what Durham gets to work with to secure cooperation and/or pleas. That's the kinda stuff you should consider before getting into an attempted coup.
Andrew Wilkow had Sidney Powell on his radio show today and she brought out something that I did not know and hadn't really paid a whole lot of attention to. She said that neither the transcript of the Flynn phone call that was used to convince VP Pence that Flynn had lied to him, nor the actual tape, had ever been seen, heard or compared by anyone outside of the FBI. She suggested that no one, other than the plotters, really knows if they match up or if the transcript was 'massaged' to trick Trump into firing Flynn. If true another log on the bonfire of the FBI's credibility.ReplyDelete
I immediately thought of the misrepresentation of the Ukrainian phone call that Vindman, Ciaramella, Schiff & Co. attempted to foist on the public. It seems the Resistance's tactical playbook is a single letter size, double space, sheet.
I look forward to your next post on today's new information release, but the new information shows clearly how much of a trap this was. The FBI wanted to close this case three weeks before the Flynn interview, but Strzok intervened. As if we didn't already have enough to conclude this, but the Logan act and interview were nothing more than a desperate attempt to keep a case going that the field office wanted to close. Wow...how could these people (the cabal who persecuted Flynn) not be facing charges? My guess is that is coming very soon.ReplyDelete
I overdid working with my eyes the last few days, so I'm taking a few hours off. Re FBI WFO wanting to close, the real story in that EC is how the case got opened in the first place. As usual, it's all about predication. Wanting to close a case that had some sort of basis would be one thing, but wanting to close a case that had no basis to begin with and then FBIHQ intervening to keep it open--that's a very different thing.Delete
Strozk stated that it must continue due to top FBI brass.Delete
Which raises all sorts of interesting questions. I'm sure Durham would be willing to listen to the explanations from any denizens of the 7th fl. at FBIHQ.Delete
“ Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you.”ReplyDelete
- Democrat Senator Chuck Schumer, Jan 3, 2017
Looks like they'll flame out on all six. Then we'll see what Trump, Barr, Durham have up their collective sleeve. And maybe the American people.Delete
I said to my wife today, the one thing that's most disturbing to me is that these people felt empowered to do these things. What does that say about us as a country?
Even though I want to see these cases played to the end and watch them all get punished, this for me is the real kicker.Delete
Not only did they feel empowered, but they had a playbook. This is not the first time. Maybe the stakes were highest, but we know from Mueller's corrupt history that these guys think they can do whatever they want, and they know how to do it to get away with it.
We can talk about how many mistakes they made now, but we mustn't lose sight of how close they came to getting away with it. If Hillary wins or Nunes isn't a pit bull or Barr decides to keep enjoying his well-earned retirement, then they get away with it.
This is not an aberration.
This is the FBI.
Not "us". It's D.C. It's a swamp of insiders protecting insiders. Trump was sent by "us" to D.C. to clean out D.C. and save the country.Delete
Fish rots from the head. Obama jump-started his campaign in Weatherman Bill Ayers' living room. They all are about using the constitutional structure to undermine and transform it without We the People having a say in the matter.Delete
Mark - it’s ideology uber alles; anything to “Get Trump!” As we’re currently seeing, the Dems/Left/Deep State will burn this country to the ground solely in,order to “Get Trump!”ReplyDelete
I disagree. We know that the weaponizing of government agencies against non-liberal Americans began virtually as soon as Obama was elected--remember the IRS? The FISC in its study of NSA database abuse said that it traced the abuse back to "at least 2012." Which means that too almost certainly began earlier. It wasn't and isn't just about Trump.Delete
Didn't Clinton RIF a third of the intel community and then refill those positions a short time later?Delete
I think you have to look at that as the beginning of the leftist weaponization of our nation's IC.
And now Soros and Obama are pouring millions into DA races around the country.
It's really quite scary.
Even with all the entertainment supplied by Trump, Barr and Durham, I think we would be better going our separate ways. If they and theirs want tyranny so bad, let them taste it for a few years. Just let us get on with our lives.
I agree with Mark.Delete
The target is us. Trump is just "in the way", and burning the country to the ground is, at least for some of them, a feature.
If one gets his news from ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN or MSNBC, he is totally clueless as to the latest developments about Flynn.ReplyDelete
The Deep State may've been forced to release this material but state-run media are still enforcing an embargo on information.
DS run media.Delete
Sidney Powell just stated Judge Sullivan has issued an order in the past hour that no motions are to be filed in the Flynn case until Jensen finishes his document production.
UCH just pointed out this likely means no more document public releases until Jensen has completed producing documents.Delete
>> Solomon L. WisenbergReplyDelete
Use of the Logan Act as a pretext is the key here. It signals a corrupt investigation from the outset. Everyone in official Washington would know this immediately. That anyone at a senior level in DOJ or FBI would be a part of, or countenance, such an effort is a disgrace <<
The new documents also explore how the Justice Department could get Flynn to admit breaking the Logan Act, a law that dates back to from 1799 which makes it a crime for a citizen to intervene in disputes between the United States and foreign governments. It has never been used to convict a citizen and is widely viewed as flagrantly unconstitutional.
The more important point is the Logan Act does not apply to a presidential Transition official -- paid by the US Treasury -- who is the NSA designate of the incoming administration, and who is DOING HIS JOB by making contact with Foreign Officials.Delete
He is an "Authorized Official."
Pretext can work if it’s legal with probable cause.Delete
The Logan Act appears not that.
Nothing appears legal with Flynn ... at all.
What’s messed up, if it went to appeal, as it appears is happening with Stone, the higher court may just review if all the legal Is and Ts were crossed without taking into account any potential mitigating or absolving evidence.
If this really is the key log in this clog of timber on a river, everyone prosecuted or referred out for prosecution by Mueller has a good chance of getting their prosecutions tossed with some subsequent grounds for civil rights lawsuits upon the government and the actors themselves. Of course, as has been stated ad nauseam, this means negating the entire Russian/Trump investigation.
Good faith protections mean you were actually acting in good faith.
My view as well.Delete
As an aside, the law that almost got President Lincoln’s VP thrown out of office via impeachment was found to be unconstitutional in the 20th Century.Delete
Give the FBI a little credit here. They had a credible report that Gen. Flynn was observed in Winona Lake, Wisconsin eating ice cream at the counter on a Sunday. They let him slide on that.Delete
Sundance at Conservative Treehouse implicates President Obama on this Russian Hoax mess due to more releases on the Flynn fiasco (yeah, Flynn’s case is the key log and I assert their Waterloo).
I still assert Obama is golden except for legacy, everyone else in his administration is toast.
Ironically, Obama was actualizing powers that mainly resulted from the Patriot Act under W, but was a culmination of decades upon decades of corruption that had a veneer of legality.
Eff it all!
Me, an effin municipal cop, with no civil service protections (my dept is not civil service) has to be ultra conscious of the US Constitution day in and day out, sometimes under very violent and quickly evolving situations, but our federal government gets to totally ignore it?
Our system is good, but it only can work on the integrity of those involved, elected and hired.
Very interesting, the proximity of dates. Looks likely. However, when I finish my new post you'll see whyDelete
1/4/17 – FBI wants to close investigation.
1/4/17 – Peter Strzok says no wait… I have a plan.
really is about "WFO" WANTS TO CLOSE. Whether the plan was Strzok's or McCabe's or Yates' or McCord's--we don't know that yet. I explain why they needed WFO to keep their case open.