Special Counsel for Trump/Russia Megathread

Tiresias -
Pedro Navaja - Lots of lying and indictments for a "fake" investigation, eh.

Good thread, PSL.

LOL

"Pedro Navaja"

Who do you trust OG?

Stop begging for attention

The democrat sour grape nothingburger thread. Brought to you by a concerned non US citizen.

It's a MAGAKAG megathread yall

martinburke -
Sogsteel - 

The democrat sour grape nothingburger thread. Brought to you by a concerned non US citizen.


Wait...POS OP isn't even American?

Born and bred — midwest. Caucasian male. 30s. No scarves in the summertime. Like to use ‘mate’ and ‘aye’. Don’t be fooled. 

WalMart Shoes -

You left some stuff out of Weissman's resume.

Focusing on it as a criminal investigation. Think of how people might have followed the OJ Simpson case or something. 

All flak, deflection, political considerations, etc. will come from others. 

Linked Dershowitz’ twitter as the primary, legitimate legal voice against the special counsel. Also included Glenn Greenwald who keeps the Russia hysteria and media coverage in check. 

& Qanon and Louise Mensch will cover the alternate reality angles.

WalMart Shoes -
Pumpkin Spice Lazarus -
WalMart Shoes -

You left some stuff out of Weissman's resume.

Focusing on it as a criminal investigation. Think of how people might have followed the OJ Simpson case or something. 

All flak, deflection, political considerations, etc. will come from others. 

Linked Dershowitz’ twitter as the primary, legitimate legal voice against the special counsel. Also included Glenn Greenwald who keeps the Russia hysteria and media coverage in check. 

& Qanon and Louise Mensch will cover the alternate reality angles.

"Focusing on it as a criminal investigation," make the details left out of his resume even more important.

Sure it does. 

If you want to include the Sara Carter/David Schoen thoughts on Weissmann’s alleged misconduct from decades ago you’re free to do so. This is a megathread. 

WalMart Shoes likely has in mind this:

Mueller’s ‘Pit Bull’ Andrew Weissmann Busted for Withholding Evidence in Previous Case: https://saraacarter.com/muellers-pit-bull-andrew-weissmann-busted-withholding-evidence-previous-case/

HULC -
FaceToFace -

Image result for any day now gif

"He'll be gone in weeks"

 

- Every liberal since 2016.

This thread lays out the matter as a criminal investigation and does not promote the misconception that President Trump is the ultimate target, or that the investigators aim to take him down. 

He is just a subject of the investigation, without much legitimate smoke to speak of. The campaign is and always has been the focus. The appointment order was posted at the top of the thread to emphasis this. 

More search warrants issued on Manafort, including a storage shed.

AlphaSlap - 

More search warrants issued on Manafort, including a storage shed.

 

Unless I'm missing something -- storage shed was from a warrant disclosed on November 17, 2017. Fresh details from a filing last night reveal a new search warrant dated March 9, 2018.

From @ZoeTillman:

"Mueller's office revealed in a filing tonight that a new search warrant was obtained on March 9 "relating to ongoing investigations" that aren't about the prosecutions against Manafort; exhibit shows it was for info associated with five phone numbers"

Document: https://t.co/dUzUivxUyB

Jeremy Stahl at Slate overviews some of the legal opinions about this (New Filing Indicates Robert Mueller May Have New Collusion Evidence):

If the warrants against the five phones are “not the subject of either of the current prosecutions involving Manafort,” then they would seem to not be connected to the crimes arising out of the Ukrainian imbroglio, which is the subject of his current prosecutions. By process of elimination, they are related to either a potential collusion case against Manafort, or additional targets. If there are additional targets, though, they would have to be connected in some way to Mueller’s wider mandate to investigate Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and/or the Trump campaign’s potential cooperation with that interference and links to Russia.

In other words, Mueller appears to be going after someone for collusion using the Manafort connection.

Not so sure about his reasoning. I'd simply say that the new warrant might be related to collusion (one of the allegations against Manafort also recently revealed in a redacted memo coming from this same lawsuit Manafort filed: here), or something else we're not yet aware of. We'll see. The timing of that warrant can also be connected to Gates flipping just a few weeks before, and possibly indicating that they're pursuing new trails as a result of that cooperation.

"I'd simply say that the new warrant might be related to collusion (one of the allegations against Manafort also recently revealed in a redacted memo coming from this same lawsuit Manafort filed: here), or something else we're not yet aware of. We'll see."- NostraSpiceLazarus

 

Bet hedging occurs when organisms suffer decreased fitness in their typical conditions in exchange for increased fitness in stressful conditions. Biological bet hedging was originally proposed to explain the observation of a seed bank, or a reservoir of ungerminated seeds in the soil.[1] For example, an annual plant's fitness is maximized for that year if all of its seeds germinate. However, if a drought occurs that kills germinated plants, but not ungerminated seeds, plants with seeds remaining in the seed bank will have a fitness advantage. Therefore, it can be advantageous for plants to "hedge their bets" in case of a drought by producing some seeds that germinate immediately and other seeds that lie dormant.

FerrisWheeler - 

"I'd simply say that the new warrant might be related to collusion (one of the allegations against Manafort also recently revealed in a redacted memo coming from this same lawsuit Manafort filed: here), or something else we're not yet aware of. We'll see."- NostraSpiceLazarus

 

Bet hedging occurs when organisms suffer decreased fitness in their typical conditions in exchange for increased fitness in stressful conditions. Biological bet hedging was originally proposed to explain the observation of a seed bank, or a reservoir of ungerminated seeds in the soil.[1] For example, an annual plant's fitness is maximized for that year if all of its seeds germinate. However, if a drought occurs that kills germinated plants, but not ungerminated seeds, plants with seeds remaining in the seed bank will have a fitness advantage. Therefore, it can be advantageous for plants to "hedge their bets" in case of a drought by producing some seeds that germinate immediately and other seeds that lie dormant.



Right.



As a general disclaimer: I approach every single media report about the case with caution. Never assume that it's 100% accurate, that it's not pre-slanted from sources, that it doesn't omit crucial details, that it won't be at some point corrected or proven false, and so on.



The Slate article is simply sharing speculation. I wanted to emphasis that he could have just said: "Maybe this is collusion related, or it could be about fucking anything. I don't really know".



Take that as a critical read of his reasoning that agrees with your cunty point there. I'll share all sorts of articles here that will sensationalize and form a narrative -- but we're well equipped to read between the lines.

^ & some of the Twitter feeds included on the first page, which we can reference, will help extract what's useful from mainstream reporting and what's not. Marcy Wheeler, as an example, routinely shows journalists to be completely wrong about the facts, incapable of referencing a time line, or just being irresponsible with their inferences. Greenwald is a skeptic first and will completely shit on much of the reporting we'll see.

Instead of sharing campaign slogans about MSM and fake news -- we can demonstrate how to properly analyze it without having to rely on fringe-media lunatics and whatnot.

US takes aim at Putin’s allies in Russia with new sanctions

"WASHINGTON — The United States punished dozens of Russian oligarchs and government officials on Friday with sanctions that took direct aim at President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle, as President Donald Trump’s administration tried to show he’s not afraid to take tough action against Moscow.

Seven Russian tycoons, including aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska, were targeted, along with 17 officials and a dozen Russian companies, the Treasury Department said. Senior Trump administration officials cast it as part of a concerted, ongoing effort to push back on Putin, emphasizing that since Trump took office last year, the U.S. has punished 189 Russia-related people and entities with sanctions.

Rather than punishing Russia for one specific action, the new sanctions hit back at the Kremlin for its “ongoing and increasingly brazen pattern” of bad behavior, said the officials, who weren’t authorized to comment by name and briefed reporters on condition of anonymity. The officials ticked through a list of complaints about Russia’s actions beyond its borders, including its annexation of Crimea, backing of separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine, support for Syrian President Bashar Assad, and cyber-hacking.

Above all else, Russia’s attempts to subvert Western democracy prompted the U.S. sanctions, officials said, in a direct nod to concerns that the U.S. president has failed to challenge Putin for alleged interference in the 2016 election that brought Trump to power.

Deripaska, whose business conglomerate controls assets from agriculture to machinery, has been a prominent figure in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation over his ties to former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. The Treasury Department said Deripaska was accused of illegal wiretaps, extortion, racketeering, money laundering and even death threats against business rivals..."

Serious question...

 

Does anyone think it’s likely that the Trump administration breaks the record of the Reagan administration for most indictments?

Good time to introduce this Russian (in light of the sanctions detailed above):

| Oleg Deripaska |

Per Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oleg_Deripaska

- Russian oligarch, aluminum magnate and philanthropist

- Founder and owner of one of the largest Russian industrial groups Basic Element

- Was president of En+ Group and United Company Rusal, the second largest aluminium company in the world, until 2018

Relevance to investigation:

- March 22, 2017 - AP Exclusive: Before Trump job, Manafort worked to aid Putin

"Manafort proposed in a confidential strategy plan as early as June 2005 that he would influence politics, business dealings and news coverage inside the United States, Europe and former Soviet republics to benefit President Vladimir Putin’s government, even as U.S.-Russia relations under Republican President George W. Bush grew worse.

Manafort pitched the plans to aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska, a close Putin ally with whom Manafort eventually signed a $10 million annual contract beginning in 2006, according to interviews with several people familiar with payments to Manafort and business records obtained by the AP. Manafort and Deripaska maintained a business relationship until at least 2009, according to one person familiar with the work.

“We are now of the belief that this model can greatly benefit the Putin Government if employed at the correct levels with the appropriate commitment to success,” Manafort wrote in the 2005 memo to Deripaska. The effort, Manafort wrote, “will be offering a great service that can re-focus, both internally and externally, the policies of the Putin government.”

- ^ Deripaska wrote in The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal denying he signed a $10 million contract with Manafort, and they both denied that there was anything nefarious going on.  He also filed a libel lawsuit against AP for this story, but it 'was dismissed... on the groups that Deripaska had not disputed 'any material facts' in the story...'

- About the Oleg Deripaska Reference in the Mueller Memo - Wheeler takes a look at Mueller's response to a motion to dismiss his indictment on Manafort (here) which references Oleg Deripaska. She reasons that Mueller is likely "pre-authorizing" the direction he's taking the Manafort case without having to reveal any evidence yet in this ongoing battle with Paul's defense team:

"To sum up thus far: this reference to Deripaska is, to the best of my knowledge, the first explicit reference to him anywhere in the Manafort docket. It has no obvious place in a memo explaining why Mueller is authorized to prosecute Manafort for money laundering tied to the Party of Regions. But there it is, in the middle of a paragraph explaining why Manafort’s prosecution follows logically even from the original grant of authority, to say nothing of any unredacted or redacted bullet points explicitly including Manafort’s alleged and documented ties to Deripaska in the scope of Mueller’s authority. By including it in the memo, Mueller effectively includes Deripaska in the ongoing discussions of the things Judge Amy Berman Jackson will likely soon agree Mueller has the authority to prosecute.

It is, then, the most telling line in the entire memo, and the most clever. It uses the opportunity of this memo to pre-authorize where Mueller is going, without having to reveal what evidence Mueller is sitting on to go there.

Of course, where he’s going — to this oligarch and his crony’s role in Trump’s election — is very obviously tied to the case in chief, the Russian tampering in the US election."

- Paul Manafort: American Hustler -- Franklin Foer deals with the Deripaska/Manafort relationship thoroughly in this piece. He details the $100 million financing Oleg provided for an investment firm Manafort established in Ukraine & Russia.

Oleg later files motion in court trying to track down some of these funds that he wanted back, and the article portrays Manafort & Rick Gates as having essentially gotten the fuck out of dodge. It was a few years of dodging, some personal crises along the way, before Manafort tried to establish himself in U.S. politics again by reaching out to Donald Trump in regards to his campaign, and offering his services for free:

"But Manafort must have also believed that money would eventually come, just as it always had, from the influence he would wield in the campaign, and exponentially more so if Trump won. So might other favors and dispensations. These notions were very likely what led him to reach out to Oleg Deripaska almost immediately upon securing a post within the campaign, after having evaded him for years. Through one of his old deputies, a Ukrainian named Konstantin Kilimnik, he sent along press clippings that highlighted his new job. “How do we use to get whole,” Manafort emailed Kilimnik. “Has OVD operation seen?” Manafort’s spokesman has acknowledged that the initials refer to Oleg Vladimirovich Deripaska. In the course of the exchanges, Kilimnik expressed optimism that “we will get back to the original relationship” with the oligarch."

That's it???

Ill Portents - PSL, what is the ratio of how 1) hilarious, 2) frightening, 3) depressing it is to you that more people want to discuss the ramifications of QAnon's latest bullshit than your compilation of facts on what could end up being the biggest political story of the century?


80% Frightening



15% hilarious



5% depressing



I sympathize.

 

Hammerstein - "he sent along press clippings that highlighted his new job. “How do we use to get whole,” Manafort emailed Kilimnik. “Has OVD operation seen?”"

That's insane.


Yeah. Worth noting that Kilimnik, Deripaska, and Manafort have all written and discussed these issues offering explanations.



| Konstantin Kilimnik |



Per Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Konstantin_Kilimnik



- Employed by Manafort's consulting firm in Ukraine



- 'Some reports say Kilimnik ran the Kiev office of Manafort's firm and was Manafort's right hand man in Kiev'



- Thought to be 'Person A' in Manafort/Gates court filings



- Alex van der Zwaan's sentencing memo claims that Rick Gates told him that Kilimnik was a former intelligence officer with the GRU. Mueller's filings also claim the FBI has made the same assessment.



--------------------------



So Manafort's communication was confirmed to have gone to Kilimnik. Deripaska has denied ever receiving it. Consider though that while Manafort is an innocent man at this point -- his track record might suggest that he's just the kind of guy who would deal in some dirt and lie about it. & if Kilimnik really is a GRU officer he's obviously lying. We can probably assume that Deripaska doesn't have much interest in telling the truth in his media op-eds either.



& since Rick Gates' plea deal we've seen these details emerge further in court filings; we've seen a report (one that could just be FBI gossip -- exercise caution) alleging that two Russian oligarchs have been stopped by the FBI at airports just recently for questioning -- one had his devices searched, and a third oligarch is being asked to interview with the special counsel (that's likely Oleg Deripaska, as they mentioned he hasn't traveled to the U.S. recently).



& we've seen Manafort's defense team strategically file lawsuits and work to get Mueller's team to reveal as much about existing and potential indictments as they can. Those filings are what have led so many commentators to conclude that there is almost certainly another superseding indictment coming for him, and it's plausibly going to involve some of this business being speculated on.