Archive for the ‘Obama and Russia’ category

Uranium One Noose is Tightening

November 21, 2017

Uranium One Noose is Tightening, American ThinkerThomas Lifson, November 21, 2017

This official reticence, whatever its origin, will be overcome as Sullivan’s cache of 50,000 documents leaks out bit by bit.  Attorney Toensing [counsel to the informant] knows exactly what she is doing here, and how outside pressure can affect the grinding of the gears of justice.

************************************

Now that the FBI’s informant on the Uranium One deal has been outed and the nondisclosure agreement formerly muzzling him abrogated, it is possible to see the outlines of the devastating case to be made against not just Hillary Clinton, but the entire Obama administration. Two intrepid reports, John Solomon of The Hill and Sara Carter of Circa News and Sinclair Broadcasting, are gaining access to some of the reported 50,000 documents in the possession of William Campbell, the whistleblower who went to the FBI with the scary details of what appeared to him to be an illegal attempt by Russian entities to take over the world uranium market, including even the uranium resources in our ground.

Reporting in The Hill, Solomon calls our attention to what could be a key to understanding the magnitude of the scandal:

Campbell, who was paid $50,000 a month to consult for the firm, was solicited by Rosatom colleagues to help overcome political opposition to the Uranium One purchase while collecting FBI evidence that the sale was part of a larger effort by Moscow to make the U.S. more dependent on Russian uranium, contemporaneous emails and memos show.

“The attached article is of interest as I believe it highlights the ongoing resolve in Russia to gradually and systematically acquire and control global energy resources,” Rod Fisk, an American contractor working for the Russians, wrote in a June 24, 2010 email to Campbell.

The Russian plot to “control global energy resources” was reported by Campbell to the FBI a year prior to approval of the acquisition. There is every reason to expect – and the proof would be available to congressional investigators or (cough) a special counsel or US attorney – that this information was passed up the chain to AG Eric Holder and even President Obama. Yet, CFIUS – the group of agency head that must approve such transactions on which Holder and Hillary sat – went ahead and approved this sale that the US knew was part of a Russian plot to control the world uranium and energy markets.

Justice Department officials confirmed the emails and documents gathered by Campbell, saying they were in the possession of the FBI, the department’s national security division and its criminal division at various times over the last decade. They added that Campbell’s work was valuable enough that the FBI paid him nearly $200,000, mostly for reimbursements over six years, but that the money also included a check for more than $51,000 in compensation after the final convictions were secured.

The information he gathered on Uranium One was more significant to the counterintelligence aspect of the case that started in 2008 than the eventual criminal prosecutions that began in 2013, they added.

Solomon and Carter were interviewed last night on Hannity, along with Sullivan’s lawyer Victoria Toensing, and under questioning let us know that the money trail from Russia all the way to American political figures via cutouts will be exposed by documented evidence.

Now, contemplate the magnitude of a scandal that could demonstrate foreign money leading to the approval of a sale that harms national security and aids a hostile power (about whose danger the Democrats have been hyperventilating for the past year).  Here is a poor quality bootleg video of the segment, that may or may not last on YouTube. If a better copy becomes available, we will post that.

 

But only if the Sessions Justice Department is willing to press the case, or is forced to approve a special counsel:

The memos, reviewed by The Hill, conflict with statements made by Justice Department officials in recent days that informant William Campbell’s prior work won’t shed much light on the U.S. government’s controversial decision in 2010 to approve Russia’s purchase of the Uranium One mining company and its substantial U.S. assets.

Campbell documented for his FBI handlers the first illegal activity by Russians nuclear industry officials in fall 2009, nearly a entire year before the Russian state-owned Rosatom nuclear firm won Obama administration approval for the Uranium One deal, the memos show.

This official reticence, whatever its origin, will be overcome as Sullivan’s cache of 50,000 documents leaks out bit by bit.  Attorney Toensing knows exactly what she is doing here, and how outside pressure can affect the grinding of the gears of justice.

Carlson Exposes Russia Story the Rest of Mainstream Media Missed

October 26, 2017

Carlson Exposes Russia Story the Rest of Mainstream Media Missed, Accuracy in Media, Brian McNicoll, October 25, 2017

(Please see also, DOJ lifts gag order; former FBI informant can tell Congress about 2010 uranium deal. — DM)

 

Carlson’s source said he had also been interviewed by Mueller, whom the source said is now more interested in those who facilitated Russian involvement in our political system as opposed to electoral collusion.

“Manafort was crystal clear Russia wanted to cultivate Hillary,” Carlson quoted the source as saying. Manafort, Tony and John Podesta, who went on to manage Clinton’s campaign, were “operatives on behalf of Russian business interests.”

“And now it turns out two people very close to Hillary Clinton were working for them. Obama administration in its effort to seek a closer relationship with Russia acquiescing in the sale of materials that are strategic and place American security interests at some risk.”

The last remark referred to other reporting this week that President Obama worked with Clinton during her time at the State Department to sell a fifth of the U.S. uranium supply to the Russians – another event that has received almost no coverage.

****************************

Nowhere in the New York Times or Washington Post will you find it, but Tucker Carlson might have pulled off the scoop of the year on his show on Fox.

Paul Manafort has long been known to be at or near the center of the investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

The FBI searched Manafort’s house, he was at the meeting with Donald Trump, Jr., and the Russian lawyer who offered dirt on Hillary Clinton and his past as a lobbyist for foreign governments means he likely knows the people might collude with.

But the assumption has been that Manafort, who served as Donald Trump’s campaign manager for a brief period in the summer of 2016, was a problem for Trump and perhaps a link from underground Russian dealings to the Oval Office itself.

Carlson said that a former senior employee at the Podesta Group with “direct personal knowledge” of the Mueller investigation contacted the show because he was “motivated … by the disgust he felt watching media coverage.”

Not only are the media getting it wrong, he said, they are getting it backwards. 

The man told Carlson the Russians were deeply involved in American politics, but the real story – perhaps now even the focus of the Mueller investigation – has “almost nothing to do with the 2016 presidential campaign.”

Instead, it is about Manafort working for years with the Podesta Group on behalf of Russian government interests, the source told Carlson. Manafort was a regular in the Podesta offices and sought to influence the Obama administration, Congress and the Hillary Clinton State Department on behalf of Russian government interests.

Tony Podesta, in turn, was a constant voice in Hillary Clinton’s ear when she was secretary of state, working through David Adams, whom he hired from the State Department to improve access.

The man said he knows of at least one meeting held to “determine how to help Uranium One, whose board members gave $100 million to the Clinton Foundation.”

Carlson’s source said he had also been interviewed by Mueller, whom the source said is now more interested in those who facilitated Russian involvement in our political system as opposed to electoral collusion.

“Manafort was crystal clear Russia wanted to cultivate Hillary,” Carlson quoted the source as saying. Manafort, Tony and John Podesta, who went on to manage Clinton’s campaign, were “operatives on behalf of Russian business interests.”

The Podestas “are in the crosshairs,” Carlson concluded.

He then brought on Brit Hume, who agreed this revelation changed the story completely by complicating everyone’s idea of Manafort’s place in it and by revealing that Mueller “is on this” and may now be involved in “a more broad-gauged effort to determine the extent and depth of Russian efforts to influence American politics going back several years.”

But then raised perhaps an even more significant question.

The story “suggests what collusion that have been was between Paul Manafort and the Podesta Group on behalf of Russian interests,” Hume said. “What you’re coming around and getting at this now … how could it be that all these journalists chasing this story for lo these many months and never ran across this thing? How can that be?”

“It’s pretty striking, and it suggests the work done on this story has not been of the best quality or this would have turned up. I’d also suggest you have a pack of journalists who are so determined to follow one storyline that they completely missed this.

“And now it turns out two people very close to Hillary Clinton were working for them. Obama administration in its effort to seek a closer relationship with Russia acquiescing in the sale of materials that are strategic and place American security interests at some risk.”

The last remark referred to other reporting this week that President Obama worked with Clinton during her time at the State Department to sell a fifth of the U.S. uranium supply to the Russians – another event that has received almost no coverage.

“The tide may be turning in political terms and hopefully in journalistic tones,” Hume said.

The Hunt for Red November

October 25, 2017

The Hunt for Red November, American ThinkerDavid Prentice, October 25, 2017

The dam has broken.   The waters are unleashed, and there’s no stopping them.  Truth is winning.  Even the Washington Post is reporting this story.  The New York Times and the rest will have to follow.  The evidence is too compelling, and the story is out there.  Much like the Weinstein scandal, there is simply too much evidence to deflect it.  The reporting of John Solomon and Sara Carter has been devastating.  They have been doing the work that the leftist American media won’t do.  Which is to report on the real Russian meddling in America’s politics:   Uranium One.  And the Trump dossier.

This is huge.  This will not go away.  Unlike the leftist media narrative of Trump/Russia collusion, there is actual evidence to show we have been compromised, and it’s not Trump who has compromised or colluded.  It’s the group of people the leftist media has vowed to protect.  The Obama/Clinton/Democratic party complex.

The evidence is overwhelming.

The Obama/Clinton administration colluded with Russia in the Uranium One deal.  They knew what the Russians wanted.  They knew the Russians were bribing people.  They knew the Clinton family foundations were getting over a hundred million dollars, that Bill Clinton received half a million dollars for an hour speech from the Russian bank involved with Uranium One.

As for the Clinton/Obama/Democratic Party alliance.  They are in trouble.  Having projected a narrative that was not only untrue about Trump, but was actually true about their own party will be devastating to their base, and the American public will likely not forget.

The leftist media.  The Democratic Party.  The Obama/Clinton families.  Their corruption reaches to the heavens.  They have knowingly deceived America in the worst of ways.  Let’s hope their stature never recovers.

************************************

The Democratic Party has put forth several narratives since their loss in 2016.  They have stuck with those narratives no matter how absurd they have been:  Trump was elected because Russia colluded with him.  Trump is unstable and unfit.  Everything Trump does is wrong, he is a tainted President.

So says the party of Hillary Clinton and Hollywood, the moral arbiters of America.  And the leftist mainstream media has followed in the most scurrilous of ways.   They have reported only what the Democratic Party narrative says they should report.

Until now.

Follow me here.  How long has this search for Trump/Russia collusion been going on?  How long has the leftist media been claiming Trump does everything wrong?

Since he was elected last November.   They have been hunting him since he won.

But the ground has shifted.  It’s been clear for a long time that the Trump/Russia collusion narrative has been just that.  It’s been a fable repeated over and over again, the Democratic Party and its media shills hoping that something would stick, helping them regain power through mindless repetition of an empty narrative.

Until now.

Unfortunately for the left, there is not the tiniest bit of evidence to bolster their narrative.  There is not a scintilla of truth that shows Donald Tramp colluded with Russia to win.  $100,000 of Facebook ads, half of them after November 8, 2016?  That’s proof?  Lord help us.  That is the dumbest idea of proof offered since Piltdown Man.  Donald Trump Jr had a meeting with a with someone claiming to have dirt on Hillary and left the meeting early because he saw nothing?  Wow.   Indict him, and impeach his father.

And that’s all there is?

Yep.  That’s all there is.

But now we have an explosion of information about Russian influence on….. *drum roll*…….the Uranium One deal.  Perhaps the worst political scandal since Teapot Dome.  And then there’s the so-called Trump dossier.  Which apparently was paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party.

The Uranium One deal has been a powder keg since Peter Schweizer wrote about the scandal in the book Clinton Cash.  It’s everything a scandal should be.  Corruption, illicit bribes, Russians influencing a deal to control stockpiles of Uranium for their own use.

Tucker Carlson reports there is an extremely credible witness that will testify how the Russians did collude with an American President.  Unfortunately for the left, it’s the Obama Presidency they colluded with, Hillary Clinton being the chief conspirator.   This witness is said to have absolute proof of this collusion.

And the leftist mainstream American media is virtually silent.

But that’s because they aren’t interested in news, or reporting.  They’re only interested in the narratives pushed by the Obama/Clinton/Democratic media complex.

Until now.

The dam has broken.   The waters are unleashed, and there’s no stopping them.  Truth is winning.  Even the Washington Post is reporting this story.  The New York Times and the rest will have to follow.  The evidence is too compelling, and the story is out there.  Much like the Weinstein scandal, there is simply too much evidence to deflect it.  The reporting of John Solomon and Sara Carter has been devastating.  They have been doing the work that the leftist American media won’t do.  Which is to report on the real Russian meddling in America’s politics:   Uranium One.  And the Trump dossier.

This is huge.  This will not go away.  Unlike the leftist media narrative of Trump/Russia collusion, there is actual evidence to show we have been compromised, and it’s not Trump who has compromised or colluded.  It’s the group of people the leftist media has vowed to protect.  The Obama/Clinton/Democratic party complex.

The evidence is overwhelming.

The Obama/Clinton administration colluded with Russia in the Uranium One deal.  They knew what the Russians wanted.  They knew the Russians were bribing people.  They knew the Clinton family foundations were getting over a hundred million dollars, that Bill Clinton received half a million dollars for an hour speech from the Russian bank involved with Uranium One.

Quid pro quo.  As clear as it can be.

They sold out American interests for thirty pieces of silver.

It’s hard to say which is the bigger disgrace.  The Obama Justice Department, the FBI, Obama himself, the Clintons, or our despicably partisan media.  Let’s not mince words, they’re all culpable, all guilty of selling out America.

It’s difficult to say enough negative about all of them.

The Trump Dossier.

The one that the Clinton campaign, and John McCain, tried to pass off on the FBI as truth.  The one that apparently was paid for by the Hillary campaign and the Democratic Party, and perhaps a Republican donor.

The dossier is so embarrassingly bad, so embarrassingly transparent as a political ruse, there aren’t’ enough words to describe its stupidity and disgraceful place in history.

This dossier became the child of the left, and the child of one James Comey.  He pushed it forward with no shame.  This dossier is what informed him of why Trump was unfit?  Good grief, James, were you that obtuse?

I guess so.   You were the one who wanted the Mueller investigation to start.  Purposefully.  Based on your belief in the (Russian) Trump dossier?   Rod Rosenstein appointed your man, Mueller.

And now it’s boomeranging.  Just ask the Podesta family.

Trump clearly did nothing wrong, but now it’s going to be revealed just how incompetent and conniving Mr. Comey, Rod Rosenstein, and Robert Mueller were and are.

The wrong people have been blamed.  And the truth is coming out.

The dam has broken.

The left’s narratives have been reduced to a pile of ashes.

Blaming Trump for colluding with the Russians for almost a year has been a failure.  It’s simple, the narrative was never true.  It was bound to be shown as false.  But the unintended consequence of playing this narrative for the last year has been that a lot of people have come to believe Russia interfered with our political system.

Most of those believers are on the left.  The disciples of Rachel Maddow, CNN, Democratic politicians, and the leftist partisan media masquerading as journalists.

The cognitive dissonance has just begun for all of them.  The proof is clear, they were all wrong.  Extraordinarily wrong.  The collusion and sell out was from the very people they put forth as heroes.  The Obama/Clinton Democratic Party has been caught with their hands in the cookie jar.  Thirty pieces of silver wasn’t enough.  It was millions of dollars and the opportunity to hold power in America that proved to be their downfall.  Colluding with the Russians was what they were willing to do in this power play.

The unwinding of this scandal will take time.  But the implication is clear.   The Trump administration will be fully exonerated.  They did nothing wrong.  Oh yes, the left won’t admit it, they will be furious (aren’t they always?), but this narrative is over except in the minds of total leftist partisans. Just like the man who threw the Russian flags at Trump. He was aiming for the wrong people.

He just didn’t know it yet.  Likewise, the leftist base doesn’t either.

As for the Clinton/Obama/Democratic Party alliance.  They are in trouble.  Having projected a narrative that was not only untrue about Trump, but was actually true about their own party will be devastating to their base, and the American public will likely not forget.

The leftist media.  The Democratic Party.  The Obama/Clinton families.  Their corruption reaches to the heavens.  They have knowingly deceived America in the worst of ways.  Let’s hope their stature never recovers.

Trio of GOP-Led Committees to Investigate Obama-Era Uranium Deal With Russia

October 25, 2017

Trio of GOP-Led Committees to Investigate Obama-Era Uranium Deal With Russia, Washington Free Beacon, October 25, 2017

Russian President Vladimir Putin and former President Barack Obama / Getty Images

A lawyer for a confidential FBI informant said Tuesday FBI officials told him that information about a Russian nuclear bribery scheme he was helping to uncover had reached the highest levels of government—that former President Barack Obama and other senior officials had been briefed on the illegal influence-peddling.

At least one of those presidential briefings occurred before the Obama administration’s approval of a Russian takeover of a large U.S. uranium mine in the fall of 2010, the lawyer said FBI officials told her client.

The deal gave the Kremlin control of up to 20 percent of U.S. uranium supply.

“While he has no first-hand information about what was in the president’s daily briefings, he was told unequivocally by the agents that information from the bribery case had been shared with the president and other senior officials and was given praise for providing that evidence,” the attorney, Victoria Toensing, told the Hill.

Rep. Peter King, (R.,N.Y.), a member of the Intelligence Committee, on Tuesday told reporters that he is particularly concerned about the Uranium One deal because he and three other top Republicans, including Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, (R., Fla.), had warned against approving it in 2010.

King said he knows those concerns were brought to “the highest levels” of the Obama administration because he received a letter in response from then-Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, who served on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), “saying it was getting full scrutiny.”

“Seven years ago this month, I raised these objections with the Treasury secretary who said they were being fully investigated,” he said. “Obviously, we want to see what happened with that inquiry, what information was brought to their attention and what they knew then, and why they acted or didn’t act and put it into context of what has come out since then.”

Any evidence that senior Obama administration officials, not to mention the president himself, was taking the FBI’s probe into a sweeping Russian bribery scheme seriously before the U.S. government approved Russia’s acquisition of Canada-based Uranium One could provide critical insights into why the U.S. government signed off on the deal amid the probe.

The Russian bribery scheme involved kickbacks, extortion, and money laundering, the Hill and Circa News reported over the last week. The Uranium One chairman through his family foundation donated $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation, and individuals with ties to the Russian nuclear industry also donated to the charity.

Revelations about the FBI probe also are refocusing attention on a $500,000 payment from a Kremlin-tied Russian bank to former President Bill Clinton and whether it was part of Moscow’s multi-million dollar scheme to sway then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to sign off on the deal giving Russia a controlling stake in Uranium One.

Bill Clinton had tried to meet with a top aide to Russia’s president at the time, Dmitry Medvedev, during the trip in question. The aide was a board director of the Russian state-controlled company. He met instead with Vladimir Putin, who was serving as prime minister at the time.

Clinton delivered the paid speech in Moscow the same month the Russians began the process of acquiring the U.S. uranium.

Hillary Clinton’s role in the approval of the Uranium One deal and Bill Clinton’s $500,000 speaking fee were first scrutinized in 2015 in the book Clinton Cash, by Peter Schweizer. The New York Times later wrote about the millions in donations to the Clinton Foundation from Uranium One board members and others with ties to the Russian nuclear industry.

New reporting last week by the Hill and Circa News about the existence of the FBI criminal investigation dating back to 2009 has once again thrown a spotlight on the deal.

The Justice Department slowly and quietly pursued the case for several years, bringing only one charge of money laundering against Vadim Mikerin, a Russian nuclear agency executive, with little fanfare and press coverage in 2014.

Hillary Clinton on Monday called the renewed focus on the uranium deal “baloney” and accused Republicans of trying to distract from the multiple probes into Russian meddling in the presidential election, including the one lead by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who served as FBI director during the Obama administration.

Three Congressional Committees are now investigating the Uranium One deal to try to find out if Clinton and other Obama Cabinet officials, purposely turned a blind eye to bribery and other illegal activity from major Russian players, including a top Russian nuclear executive, before the U.S. government approved the deal.

Key members of Congress who the Obama administration are required to brief about any high-level, classified foreign policy and national security issues, say they weren’t briefed on the FBI’s Russian bribery investigation.

“This is just the beginning of this probe—we’re not going to jump to any conclusions at this time,” Rep. Devin Nunes (R., Calif.), who chairs the Intelligence Committee, told reporters Tuesday. “One of the things, as you know, we’re concerned about is whether or not there was an FBI investigation, was there a DOJ investigation, and if so why was Congress not informed of this matter?”

Nunes stepped aside from his committee’s investigation into Russia’s ties to the Trump campaign and Moscow’s meddling in the U.S. presidential election earlier this year after a White House meeting about an aspect of the probe spurred criticism he was too conflicted to lead the investigation.

The new Uranium One revelations raise serious conflict-of-interest issues involving several Obama administration officials who either knew or should have known about the bribery scheme involving key Russian nuclear executives, several GOP lawmakers argue.

Clinton in her role as secretary of state sat the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, along with several other cabinet members, including Attorney General Eric Holder. CFIUS is the inter-agency government entity that approved the acquisition of Uranium One deal by a subsidiary of Rosatam, Russia’s state-controlled nuclear-energy arm.

Holder, as the top Justice Department official, would undoubtedly know about a probe involving senior-level Russian officials.

Robert Mueller, the special prosecutor who is now presiding over the federal government’s investigation into Russian ties to associate of President Donald Trump, was FBI director at the time. He would not only know about the probe, he would likely have signed off on it.

“We’ll be focusing on how the inter-agency process worked in this and how we don’t think that it worked out very well,” said Rep. Ron DeSantis, (R., Fla.), who chairs the House Oversight panel’s national security subcommittee.

The House Oversight and House Intelligence Committees on Tuesday announced a joint probe into the Uranium One deal and the Justice Department’s handling of the Russian bribery investigation and prosecution.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, (R., Iowa), who chairs the Judiciary Committee, has been investigating the Uranium One deal for several weeks. He wants to know whether the Justice Department has “fully investigated” whether “the Russians compromised the Obama administration’s decision to smooth the way for the transaction.”

“It turns out that during the transaction, the Justice Department had an ongoing criminal investigation for bribery, extortion, and money laundering into officials for the Russian company making that purchase,” Grassley said last week. “Russians involved in the conspiracy were reportedly coordinating with high-level officials close to Vladimir Putin,” he added.

Grassley also wants the Justice Department to release the confidential informant from a non-disclosure agreement he signed during the Obama administration and has questioned whether Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein would be allowed to conduct any investigation into the Obama’s handling of the uranium sale to the Russians.

Rosenstein was the U.S. attorney in Maryland who investigated and prosecuted the Russian bribery scheme.

Before they knew about the FBI’s Russian racketeering probe, and some of the recent revelations provided by the FBI confidential informant, Republican critics of the Uranium One deal believed it was simply an example of the Obama administration and other naïve U.S. politicians supporting a Russia reset and freer trade between the two nations.

Ever since the fall of the Soviet Union, the U.S. had been building strong business ties to Russia, including commerce involving nuclear energy. Former President George H.W. Bush inked a deal to allow U.S. nuclear providers to buy uranium from Russia’s nuclear warheads that had been downgraded from the highly enriched weaponized levels.

Critics of greater cooperation between the two nations complained former President George W. Bush tried to continue the civilian nuclear cooperation despite concerns that Russia was then providing Iran with nuclear technology and providing Syria with advanced conventional weapons in violation of nonproliferation laws.

Bush only withdrew the proposed nuclear accord after Russia invaded Georgia. The Obama administration quickly picked up where Bush had left off, submitting a new U.S.-Russia nuclear cooperation agreement to Congress in 2010 despite evidence of Russia’s continued involvement in Iran’s nuclear and conventional weapons program, and Moscow’s role in running interference for Iran at the United Nations Security Council.

By Obama’s second year in office, Putin’s ambitions to expand his nuclear energy business operations inside the U.S. were well under way, and Mikerin, the Russian official who headed a U.S.-based subsidiary of Rosatom called Tenam USA, had played a key role in fulfilling those goals.

The same year the Obama administration approved the Uranium One deal it reportedly issued a visa for Mikerin.

The visa was awarded even though the FBI had already gathered “substantial evidence” in the fall of 2009 that he was involved in the Russian racketeering scheme, the Hill has reported. The Justice Department arrested and charged Mikerin with extortion several years later, legal documents show.

The Russian Collusion Story: The Acme of Fake News

July 16, 2017

The Russian Collusion Story: The Acme of Fake News, American ThinkerClarice Feldman, July 16, 2017

Richard Fernandez is one of the most brilliant authors on the Internet. This week he wrote:

Conventional wisdom posits the chief challenges facing the post-Cold War World are Global Warming and the decline of international institutions. But maybe that assurance is a species of Fake News. Suppose the most pressing problems in the next decade is finding new energy supplies to 1) keep the price of oil low enough to contain Russia (and Islamism); and 2) adapting to a disruptive information revolution no one can seem to control. Who will hand you that unconventional wisdom unless you come to it yourself.

He’s right, as I explain, but the significance of his observation is this: which of the two candidates — Hillary or Trump — was more likely to tap into America’s huge energy resources to contain both Russia and the Islamists? And when you answer that as you must — Trump — you can dismiss all the folderol about Donald J. Trump Jr’s, 15 minute meeting in Trump Tower with a Russian lawyer as evidence of “collusion” with Russia.  As I further explain, the non-stop media promotion of some nefarious scheme between Russia and Trump does not pass even the most cursory forensic examination, proving once again in the age of fake news, you cannot remain a passive consumer of news. You have to bring to each story the good sense and diligence with which you handle your most important personal affairs.

A. Russia and Environmental Groups

As Fernandez explained:

The oil crash collapsed the ruble and forced a 27% reduction in the Kremlin’s military budget in 2016.  With oil prices set to stay flat the Russians have to keep drilling and investing simply to stay level as the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies notes.  The Kremlin doesn’t make any real spending money until world oil price gets above levels before the great oil crash of 2014, which may not happen any time soon.[snip] You would think this a Eureka moment: to contain oil prices is to contain Russia (and Islamism). But cheap fossil fuels are not everyone’s cup of tea.  “Drill, baby, drill” is not popular on the left.  Even though liberals understand the power of cheap energy — one of Hillary’s supposedly hacked emails even alleged anti-fracking and environmental causes were a Russian plot to depress oil production — to advocate it is bad progressive politics. This probably led the Saudis to Hillary’s camp in 2016. “According to Bob McNally, president of consulting firm Rapidan Group, countries in the oil-producing Middle East, including Saudi Arabia, are hoping for Hillary Clinton to become president.”

If you’re looking for collusion with Russia, it is not to be found in the Trump Tower meeting.  Paul Mirengoff of Powerline details the Russian efforts through environmental groups — at best Stalin’s “useful idiots” — to tamp down US energy production.

 Lamar Smith, chairman of the House Science Committee, tells James Freeman of the Wall Street Journal:

If you connect the dots, it is clear that Russia is funding U.S. environmental groups in an effort to suppress our domestic oil and gas industry, specifically hydraulic fracking. They have established an elaborate scheme that funnels money through shell companies in Bermuda. This scheme may violate federal law and certainly distorts the U.S. energy market. The American people deserve to know the truth and I am confident Secretary Mnuchin will investigate the allegations.

To help Sec. Mnuchin conduct such an investigation, Rep. Smith, along with Energy Subcommittee Chairman Randy Weber, sent him a letter. They noted:

According to the former Secretary General of NATO, “Russia, as part of their sophisticated information and disinformation operations, engaged actively with so-called nongovernmental organizations – environmental organizations working against shale gas – to maintain dependence on imported Russian gas.” Other officials have indicated the same scheme is unfolding in the U.S.

Reps. Smith and Weber add that, according to public sources including a 2014 report from Republican staff on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, “entities connected to the Russian government are using a shell company registered in Bermuda, Klein Ltd. (Klein), to funnel tens of millions of dollars to a U.S.-based 501(c)(3) private foundation,” which supports various environmental groups. Klein denies this allegation.

Regardless of the conduit for the money, the allegation of funneling appears to be substantial. Indeed, says Freeman, it appears to have been noted by none other than Hillary Clinton:

If a document posted last year on WikiLeaks is to be believed, Clinton campaign staff summarized in an email attachment Hillary Clinton’s remarks on the subject during a private speech:

Clinton Talked About “Phony Environmental Groups” Funded By The Russians To Stand Against Pipelines And Fracking. “We were up against Russia pushing oligarchs and others to buy media. We were even up against phony environmental groups, and I’m a big environmentalist, but these were funded by the Russians to stand against any effort, oh that pipeline, that fracking, that whatever will be a problem for you, and a lot of the money supporting that message was coming from Russia.” [Remarks at tinePublic, 6/18/14]

Freeman suggests that Mnuchin commence his investigation by speaking with Mrs. Clinton, who “obviously knows the terrain.” He also thinks John Podesta would be a useful source.

Podesta is invested in and acts for a “green energy company backed by the Russian government.”

B. The Media Has lost all Credibility, Serving as the semi-official newsroom for the Democratic Party

Just as Fernandez detailed the rise of Samizdat in Russia as the official press was uniformly distrusted, the growth on alternate media in the U.S. is disrupting the old news models .

Our trust hierarchies have collapsed. As with Soviet Russia, the “official” media sources are now distrusted as purveyors “fake news”.  To fill the gap a peer-to-peer grapevine, similar to the “friends and family”, a samizdat is emerging to pick up the slack. Sonya Mann at Inc uses a startup to illustrate the growing division of society into trust groups. “Pax Dickinson wants to fund the revolution. Not a blood-in-the-streets revolution, but one where hardcore right-wingers can economically secede from the parts of society they vehemently dislike. “We need parallel everything. I do not want to ever have to spend a single dollar at a non-movement business.

Nothing so illustrates why the media has  deservedly lost all credibility than it’s unending, overdone effort to fit any action on the part of the President or those around him into a narrative of Russia somehow colluding with him to defeat Hillary. This week’s take was the short meeting his son held with a Russian lawyer in Trump Tower last summer.

The clearest summary of the facts surrounding the meeting with Trump’s son last summer is to be found in The American Spectator.  Scott McKay writes:

[Natalia] Veselnitskaya’s  [The Russian lawyer’s] presence in the United States alone ought to be the source of suspicion that not only is the Trump-Russian collusion narrative suspect in this case but that the real inquiry ought to be into whether the encounter was a small part of a larger attempt to trap the Trump campaign.

The Russian lawyer wasn’t even supposed to be here. She had been denied a visa for entry into the United States in late 2015, but given a rather extraordinary “parole” by the federal government to assist preparation for a client subject to asset forfeiture by the Justice Department. That was in January. The client was Prevezon Holdings, a Russian company suspected of having been paid some portion of $230 million stolen by Russian mobsters. When Sergey Magnitsky a Russian lawyer representing a company that had been the victim of the theft, reported it to authorities in Moscow he was promptly jailed and beaten to death. The American response to this atrocity was the 2012 Magnitsky Act, which sanctioned several individuals connected to human rights abuses. The Russian government retaliated by preventing American adoptions of Russian children.

But in June, she was permitted to fly back to the U.S., have the meeting with Trump Junior  —  at Trump Tower, no less  —  and then end up in the front row for a congressional hearing involving testimony from a former U.S. ambassador to Russia, then turning up at a D.C. showing of a documentary film on the negative effects of the Magnitsky Act, and later appearing at a dinner involving Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) and former Rep. Ron Dellums (D-CA) who is now a lobbyist for the Russians. The repeal of that legislation is a priority item for the Russians and a personal project of Veselnitskaya’s; it, rather than any Clinton dirt, was reportedly the primary subject brought forth at the meeting with Donald Trump Jr.

All of this without a visa! Not to mention Veselnitskaya didn’t file a FARA (Foreign Agents Registration Act) document before acting as a lobbyist for a foreign entity, as required by law. Neither, apparently, did Dellums. Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) wrote a fascinating letterTuesday to Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson asking them to please find out what in the hell Veselnitskaya was doing in this country last June.

And further, it turns out Veselnitskaya was connected to Fusion GPS, the Democrat opposition research firm which employed a former British spy who used Russian contacts to produce the infamous and debunked Pee Pee Dossier smearing Trump. Veselnitskaya hired Fusion GPS head Glenn Simpson to work on behalf of Prevezon, the company she was allowed into the country to represent, in its efforts to repeal the Magnitsky Act. Fusion then hired Christopher Steele, the British spy who drew on Russian sources to produce that dossier, and made him available for private briefings on the dossier with left-leaning media sources such as Mother Jones, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Yahoo! News, the New Yorkerand CNN in September.

Naturally, John McCain is involved  —  if that fact should produce his resignation, all of this will have been worth it.

By the way, there is Veselnitskaya’s social media account, which is decidedly more aligned with the Fusion GPS side of this equation than the Trump side.

And the meeting came about largely due to hyped-up promises made by a publicist for a Russian pop star who was connected to the Trump family from the Miss Universe pageant having been held in Moscow in 2013  —  promises which don’t appear to have been fulfilled. If this whole thing doesn’t look like an old-fashioned dangle to you, then you haven’t watched enough spy movies.

If timelines are interesting to you, there is this  —  reportedly, the Obama administration sought permission to electronically monitor Trump Tower in early June, and the FISA court would not grant it. But in October, that warrant was given. [snip]

And once that meeting  —  which on its surface was a waste of everyone’s time  —  was had, the Obama administration now had something to sell to the FISA court to get that warrant  —  from which they snagged Mike Flynn and gave the Democrat party and the media a mechanism to shroud the Trump administration in what can best be described as a rather dubious scandal. Remember how Hillary Clinton was accusing Trump of being a Putin’s puppet at the October 19 debate?

C. Donald J Trump’s son had every reason to believe that there was evidence of Hillary’s collusion with Russia

If this seems farfetched, consider this Veselnitskaya  was barred from entry to the US until Loretta Lynch granted her an excedptional “immigration parole” to appear in a judicial proceeding; a federal judge considered — but we can find no ruling — her motion  on January 6, 2016,to extend her stay by a week, and then  with no explanation of how this occurred, she was back in the US on June of that year  where she met with Donald J Trump Jr and attended as a front row guest a Congressional hearing on the Magnitsky act which imposed sanctions on Russia.

To add a dash of extra color to the story the media reported that with the lawyer was a “former Russian counter intelligence officer”, Rinat Akhmetshin.  He denies this.

“I am an American citizen since 2009 who pays taxes, earned his citizenship after living here since 1994, and swore an oath of loyalty to the United States of America,”

Kayleigh McEnany in The Hill characterized this as a “conspiracy theory desperately in earch of evidence”.

Bill Clinton had given a $500,000 speech in Russia.  Clinton had given her approval in handing one-fifth of U.S. uranium to Russia, after which her foundation received $2.35 million from the Russian-controlled company.  Suspiciously, Clinton did not disclose the transaction.

Likewise, Clinton campaign chief John Podesta sat on the board of a company that received $35 million from the Russian government alongside fellow board members Anatoly Chubais, a senior Russian official, and Ruben Vardanyan, an oligarch.

Given this context, why wouldn’t Trump Jr. be open to taking a meeting that offered evidence of incriminating Clinton dealings with Russia, particularly when most of the media refused to look into Clinton’s question-raising actions?[snip] We likewise know that several foreign countries known for their human rights violations  —  like Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Brunei, and Algeria  —  donated millions to the Clinton foundation, and yet few publications construed their “support” in a negative way.

Taken together, the micro story of Donald Trump Jr. seeking opposition research  —  much like Clinton allies did in their dealings with the Ukrainian government  —  does nothing in the way of proving the macro allegation that the Trump campaign coordinated with Russia in hacking the DNC and releasing Clinton’s illegally obtained emails.

The American people see through this leftist-purveyed Russia conspiracy theory.  That’s why a full 56 percent want Congress and the media to focus on real issues, not Russia.  If the left continues to concoct Russian collusion evidence, they can fully expect for the 2018 congressional elections to look a lot like the special elections in Kansas, Montana, South Carolina, and Georgia  —  Republican victory.  Voters dismiss the salacious in favor of solutions, and as of now, the left have nothing besides an evidence-free smear campaign.

In any event, isn’t it curious that those who claim to consider a meeting to listen to opposition research, bought hook line and sinker the ridiculous-on-its-face Dossier concted by GPS against Trump, a far more likely piece of Russian intel disinformation? Or why they ignore DNC officials meeting with Ukrainian government officials for dirt on then Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort.

Politico detailed the many ways the Ukrainians worked to help Hillary beat Trump.  As you might guess, they indicated these efforts were “far less concerted or centrally directed than Russia’s alleged hacking and dissemination of Democratic emails.” Covering with the word “alleged” a smear without any evidence but for the mutterings of Crowdstrike, a private outfit which was the only investigation the DNC allowed , a misstep by the Comey FBI which let this pass.

In any event, Legal commentators on both sides of the aisle have confirmed there was nothing illegal about the meeting.   I suppose we can’t expect much more of a press corps so stupid it mistakes the Star Spangled Banner for France’s La Marseillaise, and Bastille Day for the 100th Anniversary of the U.S. entry in WW I.

You’ll just have to work harder in the face of such ignorance and bias to find out what you need to know.

Missile defense damns Obama ‘flexibility’

May 31, 2017

Missile defense damns Obama ‘flexibility’, American Thinker, Daniel John Sobieski, May 31, 2017

Tuesday’s missile defense test, in which a ground-based interceptor successfully intercepted an ICBM over the Pacific, was both a warning to North Korea and another indication that America is back.  The test was in the works before Trump took office, but it comes on an administration welcoming improvements in missile defense versus the prior Obama administration that used back channels to give it away to Putin and the Russians.

As the Washington Examiner reported:

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency successfully shot down a dummy warhead in space over the Pacific Ocean Tuesday during a test of a missile defense system that would protect the country from intercontinental ballistic missiles like the ones being developed by North Korea.

“During the test, an ICBM-class target was launched from the Reagan Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands,” said a statement from the agency. “A ground-based interceptor was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, and its exo-atmospheric kill vehicle intercepted and destroyed the target in a direct collision.”

The irony of the interceptor being launched from a facility with Ronald Reagan’s name on it should escape no one.  President Reagan dreamed of a multi-layered missile defense most derided as “Star Wars.”  He dreamed of preventing or deterring a nuclear attack, not merely avenging one.  Perhaps he might have also had in mind the danger posed from rogue regimes such as North Korea and Iran.

We see Reagan’s legacy in the Aegis missile cruisers and destroyers that can be deployed in troubled waters around the globe.  We see it in the THAAD theater missile defense recently deployed to South Korea.  All of this President Barack Hussein Obama opposed.

Missile defense systems are systems President Obama has long opposed as “Cold War” weapons.  When President Obama took office in January 2009, sitting on his desk were President George W. Bush’s plans for the deployment of ground-based missile interceptors, such as are deployed at Fort Greely, Alaska, in Poland, as well as missile defense radars in the Czech Republic.

As Investor’s Business Daily noted over a year ago, President Obama had other plans.  His betrayal of our allies was ironically exquisite:

Yet within hours of Medvedev’s election as president in 2008, the Russian announced that Moscow would deploy SS-26 missiles in his country’s enclave of Kaliningrad situated between our NATO allies Poland and Lithuania.

He wanted the U.S. to abandon plans to deploy missile interceptors in Poland and warning radars in the Czech Republic designed to counter a future threat from Iran.

What did President Obama do? He caved in and notified the Poles in a midnight phone call on Sept. 17, 2009 – the 70th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s invasion of Poland – that we were pulling the plug on that system due to Russian objections.

Putin then watched in 2012 as Obama promised Medvedev at the Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul, South Korea, that after his re-election he would have more “flexibility” to weaken missile defense, which would help him fulfill his dream of U.S. disarmament.

Putin know full well Obama’s weakness in responding to any foreign threat to U.S. interests and security.  President Obama was our Neville Chamberlain, promising “peace in our time” as he invited war with weakness, apologies, and appeasement.  It was he who colluded with the Russians to threaten American national security in the “back channel” conversation with Medvedev that fell victim to an open mic.

Thanks largely to President George W. Bush and his push to fulfill President Ronald Reagan’s dream, the continental United States and overseas allies are protected against missile attack by 30 deployed long-range ground-based interceptors (GBI), 32 Navy ships armed with over 100 SM-3 IA interceptors and two dozen advanced SM-3 IB interceptors, dozens of Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptors, and eight X-band missile defense radars deployed abroad.

It was Obama who proved to be Russia’s and Putin’s lapdog.  Trump may have the chance to fire a second shot heard around the world, securing America’s freedom and very existence.  When that pudgy little man-child gets his latest toy, just shoot that North Korean ICBM test down.

 

 

Kushner Added to Russian Conspiracy Theory

May 30, 2017

Kushner Added to Russian Conspiracy Theory, Front Page MagazineMatthew Vadum, May 30, 2017

News consumers are now suffering through the practiced, hyperbolic, omnipresent outrage that follows revelations that presidential adviser Jared Kushner allegedly tried to create what the New York Times is calling “a secret channel between his father-in-law’s transition team and Moscow to discuss the war in Syria and other issues.”

According to the leaders of the ongoing witch hunt against the Trump administration, Kushner even had the temerity during the presidential transition process to exchange words with Sergey Kislyak, Russia’s ambassador to the United States.

This supposedly important news about Kushner put the White House in panic mode, we are told by our betters in the media, forcing Steve Bannon and Reince Priebus to return prematurely from a presidential trip overseas to control the public relations damage.

The fateful conversation took place on Trump’s home turf, according to the Old Gray Lady:

The discussion took place at Trump Tower at a meeting that also included Michael T. Flynn, who served briefly as Mr. Trump’s national security adviser until being forced out when it was revealed that he had misled Vice President Mike Pence and others about a separate telephone conversation he had with Mr. Kislyak. It was unclear who first proposed the secret communications channel, but the idea was for Mr. Flynn to speak directly with a Russian military official. The channel was never set up.

And that’s all of it. There was a meeting. No deals came out of this Russian round table. No evidence exists of nefarious activities. No quid pro quo. Nothing. It is yet another nothing burger in a long series of nothing burgers.

A late-breaking Fox News story Monday night absolves Kushner of responsibility for the back channel proposal, indicating the idea came from the Russians.

The December meeting between Kushner and Kislyak “focused on Syria,” an unidentified source said.

During the meeting the Russians broached the idea of using a secure line between the Trump administration and Russia, not Kushner, a source familiar with the matter told Fox News. […] The idea of a permanent back channel was never discussed, according to the source. Instead, only a one-off for a call about Syria was raised in the conversation. In addition, the source told Fox News the December meeting focused on Russia’s contention that the Obama administration’s policy on Syria was deeply flawed.

NBC reports that Kushner, who is married to Trump’s daughter and fellow presidential adviser Ivanka, is reportedly being investigated by the FBI as part of the fanciful, politicized probe into supposed collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign.

The Fox account continues:

Kushner suggested the use of Russian diplomatic facilities as a way to shield pre-inauguration discussions with Kislyak from monitoring, according to The [Washington] Post.

Kislyak allegedly then relayed the suggestion to his superiors in Moscow. That was based on intercepts of Russian communications that were reviewed by U.S. officials, although neither the meeting nor the communications of the Americans involved were under U.S. surveillance, officials told the Post.

The source has told Fox News that Kushner is eager to tell Congress about the meeting and any others of interest.

While the investigation moves forward and the manufactured mass hysteria continues to build in Congress and the media, Americans need to be reminded that merely communicating with an unfriendly foreign power in peacetime is not an inherently seditious or even suspicious behavior. It’s the content of the discussions that matters, not the mere fact that Americans and foreign officials broke bread.

Russian envoys and other pro-Russia special pleaders routinely meet with American officials, including lawmakers on Capitol Hill and administration officials regardless of which party controls the White House.

Never mind that the virtue-signaling Barack Obama routinely reached out to hostile foreign governments –swapping five Taliban generals for a single American traitor, to provide just one notorious example of the fruit of Obama’s plotting– when he was president. Obama even wore such illicit cloak-and-dagger communications with head-cutting barbarians as a badge of honor. Democrats and their Deep State allies didn’t give a farthing’s cuss at the time.

But that was when Democrats controlled the apparatus of the American state. Now that a Republican is president the rules have been changed.

Sunday on “Meet the Press,” the Wall Street Journal‘s Kimberley Strassel tried to inject some sanity into the debate, saying the current discussion is “astonishing” and “absolutely divorced from reality.”

“Let me set the scene for you,” she explained.

It’s 2008, we are having an election and candidate Obama, he’s not even president elect, sends William Miller over to Iran to establish a back channel, and let the Iranians know should he win the election they will have friendlier terms. Okay? So this is a private citizen going to foreign soil, obviously in order to evade U.S. intelligence monitoring and establishing a back channel with a sworn enemy of the United States who was actively disrupting our efforts in the military in the Middle East.

So, is that bad judgment? Is that a bad thing that happened? Back channels are completely normal, they happen all the time. Reagan did them. Obama did them. Everyone did. So, I am not quite sure why, supposedly having at least the president [who] is now elected setting up a back channel with the Russians, it is somehow out of bounds.

National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster had previously said much the same thing.

We have back channel communications with any number of countries, so, generally speaking, about back channel communications, what that allows you to do is to communicate in a discreet manner. It doesn’t predispose you to any kind of content in that conversation.

Strassel and McMaster are right, of course.

And it was President Obama himself who openly encouraged keeping in touch with governments not aligned with the United States.

Recall the answer then-Sen. Obama gave to a question during a July 23, 2007, debate. He was asked if he would be “willing to meet separately, without precondition, during the first year of your administration, in Washington or anywhere else, with the leaders of Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea, in order to bridge the gap that divides our countries?”

Obama famously replied in the affirmative. “I would, and the reason is this, that the notion that somehow not talking to countries is punishment to them — which has been the guiding diplomatic principle of this administration — is ridiculous.”

He added that “Ronald Reagan and Democratic presidents like JFK constantly spoke to Soviet Union at a time when Ronald Reagan called them an evil empire.”

And no one colluded with Russia more than Obama when he became president.

Obama worked “behind the scenes for months to forge a new working relationship with Russia, despite the fact that Russian President Vladimir Putin has shown little interest in repairing relations with Washington or halting his aggression in neighboring Ukraine,” Bloomberg News reported in 2014.

Obama advanced Russia’s interests in so many ways.

In 2009 Obama killed President Bush’s missile defense program for the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland. Then he renegotiated the New START nuclear arms agreement, which curbed the U.S. missile defense arsenal while letting the Russians add to theirs. In March 2012 Obama was caught on an open microphone telling then-Russian President Dmitri Medvedev to wait until after the upcoming election when he would be able to make even more concessions on missile defense. As Russia engaged in what one expert called the largest military buildup since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Obama flipped off Mitt Romney during a presidential debate. After Romney on the campaign trail referred to Russia as “without question, our No. 1 geopolitical foe,” Obama mocked him, saying “the 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.” And Obama did virtually nothing but talk when Putin invaded Ukraine.

Obama was the most pro-Russian U.S. president of all time, which makes the Left’s conspiracy theory about Trump’s collusion with Russia seem especially far-fetched.

The claim that “Russia ‘hacked’ the American election –to the extent that it changed the outcome– never made any sense,” observes Michael Walsh, who previously described the outlandish theory as the driving force behind a “rolling coup attempt” by the Left.

This “fever dream” was “cooked up by Sore Loser Hillary and her malignant consigliere, John Podesta … [and] began its demonic life as a way to explain Mrs. [Hillary] Clinton’s astonishment and anger at losing an election all her media buddies told her was in the bag, and for which she felt sure the fix was in.”

Those of us who habitually smell rats knew right off that there was nothing to it. But from that night forward, the Clintons, the Leftist media and the Democrats have been pounding the notion that, somehow, the Russians affected the election and that Trump is corrupt, morally unfit, an imbecile and an embarrassment to America. Take a good look at their reaction, ladies and gentlemen, for not since Linda Blair rotated 360 and spewed puke on a priest have we seen such deracinated contempt.

Democrats have much to fear from the congressional investigation into the Trump-Russia conspiracy theory, he adds.

Before last November Democrats “never met a communist they didn’t like or a Russian they didn’t want to embrace.” They have “overplayed their hand” and in so doing have placed themselves in jeopardy.

“They’re so fully invested in this fairy tale that when it blows up in their faces, and another underlying reason for its concoction becomes clear, years of lamentation and wandering in the electoral wilderness should follow.”

This, of course, assumes Republicans will stand up for President Trump.

It is a risky assumption.