Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Brother of Donald Trump's Secretary of Education met with Putin ally to establish a communication back channel for the future president.

Courtesy of WaPo: 

The United Arab Emirates arranged a secret meeting in January between Blackwater founder Erik Prince and a Russian close to President Vladi­mir Putin as part of an apparent effort to establish a back-channel line of communication between Moscow and President-elect Donald Trump, according to U.S., European and Arab officials. 

The meeting took place around Jan. 11 — nine days before Trump’s inauguration — in the Seychelles islands in the Indian Ocean, officials said. Though the full agenda remains unclear, the UAE agreed to broker the meeting in part to explore whether Russia could be persuaded to curtail its relationship with Iran, including in Syria, a Trump administration objective that would be likely to require major concessions to Moscow on U.S. sanctions. 

Though Prince had no formal role with the Trump campaign or transition team, he presented himself as an unofficial envoy for Trump to high-ranking Emiratis involved in setting up his meeting with the Putin confidant, according to the officials, who did not identify the Russian.

Wait, what?

The article goes on to point out that Erik Prince is the brother of Secretary of Education Betsy Devos and that he donated a quarter of a million dollars to Trump's campaign.

This is how a spokesman for Prince responded to this story:

“Erik had no role on the transition team. This is a complete fabrication. The meeting had nothing to do with President Trump. Why is the so-called under-resourced intelligence community messing around with surveillance of American citizens when they should be hunting terrorists?”

Actually you know this seems to be potentially a hell of a lot more concerning than a simple terrorist plot. So I am good with the intelligence community pursuing this.

Here is a little something else to keep in mind from a report early last month: 

An alleged computer server connection between the Trump Organization and Alfa Bank, an influential financial institution in Russia with connections to both the Russian and Ukrainian elite, is still being investigated by the FBI, according to a new report by CNN. 

The FBI’s counterintelligence team, which is also looking into Russia’s suspected hacking of Democratic National Committee servers and the email account of her campaign chairman, is investigating why a computer server owned by Alfa Bank repeatedly looked up a computer server owned by the Trump Organization in Lititz, Pennsylvania. Eighty percent of the attempts to look up that Trump computer server were performed by Alfa Bank — 2,820 in total — with almost all of the rest being conducted by Spectrum Health, a medical facility chain for which Dick DeVos, the husband of Trump’s education secretary, Betsy DeVos, serves as chairman of the board.

Paul Vixie, who designed the DNS system used by the modern internet, previously told Slate that the most likely explanation for the interactivity between the Alfa Bank and Trump Organization servers is that they “were communicating in a secretive fashion.” 

The explanation offered by Alfa Bank is that this was all probably due to spam, but it was discounted because it was only happening between these entities and was not widespread.

And just to add a little more fuel to the fire here, yesterday we also learned that two years ago Trump's former campaign adviser, Carter Page, had been recruited by Russian spies:

Two years before joining the Trump campaign as a foreign policy adviser, New York business consultant Carter Page was targeted for recruitment as an intelligence source by Russian spies promising favors for business opportunities in Russia, according to a sealed FBI complaint. 

Page confirmed to ABC News that he is the individual identified as "Male-1" in a 2015 court document submitted in a case involving the Russian spies. 

Page told ABC News he cooperated in the case, and felt the Feds "unmasked" him by describing him in January 2015 in a manner that would be known to energy insiders. 

"I didn't want to be a spy," he said in an interview early Monday afternoon. "I'm not a spy."

Okay can we just go ahead and state for the record that Donald Trump, and his team, were colluding with the Russians?

Or are we still not sure?

28 comments:

  1. Anonymous6:18 AM

    Something very odd about the brainwashed private bamboozled kids. NO more tax dollars to brainwash kids in America. PUBLIC SCHOOLS RULE.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous6:19 AM

    "Why is the so-called under-resourced intelligence community messing around with surveillance of American citizens when they should be hunting terrorists?”
    ------------
    SQUIRREL!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous6:43 AM

    Trump et al riddled w/corruption!

    It's more than sickening to watch and listen to the steady leak of factual information coming out about Trump and those around him!

    IMPEACH, IMPEACH, IMPEACH

    ReplyDelete
  4. WA Skeptic6:59 AM

    There's a reason why we have a State Department, and it doesn't need the presence of Erik Prince.

    ITMFA

    ReplyDelete
  5. Anonymous7:00 AM

    IMO, the entire oval office is infested with Russian spies. Time to fumigate!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Anonymous7:23 AM

    MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough laughed incredulously at the news of another Trump associate meeting with a Putin associate during the presidential transition.

    Erik Prince, the founder of the controversial Blackwater security firm and brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, reportedly took part in a secret meeting with a Russian envoy nine days before the inauguration.

    The latest revelation was just too much for the host of “Morning Joe,” who broke out into laughter.

    “Betsy DeVos? Who are these people? Who are these people?” Scarborough said. “I’m just saying, the Trump people, in general.”

    Panelist Mark Halperin asked why Prince — who, like his sister, is a major contributor to the Trump campaign — would issue a over-the-top denial attacking the intelligence community.

    “Because he’s stupid, that’s why,” Scarborough said. “He’s stupid. It’s like Carter Page. I love the quote from the Russians about Carter Page: He’s a blanking idiot. Tell everybody what you told me about these guys. It’s from the ’80s movie ‘Spies Like Us.’ They’re idiots.”

    Prince issued a denial through a spokesman, and he claimed the meeting had nothing to do with the Trump transition team and accused intelligence services of losing focus on terrorism by investigating the Republican administration.

    “He’s not telling the truth,” Scarborough said. “He’s lying, that’s why they’re doing it. Anybody that knows transition and knows the players of the transition, and this is all I will say, will tell you that he’s lying. That’s all I’m going to say, but it is obvious to anybody that knows what happened during the transition, so it will be obvious to the FBI, that he’s a liar.”

    http://www.rawstory.com/2017/04/morning-joe-mocks-trump-ally-erik-princes-denial-of-russia-ties-its-like-spies-like-us-theyre-idiots/

    ReplyDelete
  7. Anonymous7:27 AM

    The more Donald Trump claims this is about him being wiretapped or his team unmasked, the more we have to remember this is about Donald Trump’s ties to Vladimir Putin, the man who helped him win the 2016 presidential election.

    This report of yet another secret meeting between a Trump representative and Russia is obviously bad news for Trump.

    Chess champion Garry Kasparov offered an answer to McMullin’s question: “In the words of Bond nemesis Goldfinger,

    “Once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, the third time it’s enemy action.” Well beyond third.”

    http://www.politicususa.com/2017/04/04/bombshell-report-exposes-secret-meeting-trump-putin-representatives.html

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous7:45 AM

    There are bad ideas and then there is this terrible, no good, job-killing, bad for America idea:

    Foreigners who want to visit the U.S., even for a short trip, could be forced to disclose contacts on their mobile phones, social-media passwords and financial records, and to answer probing questions about their ideology, according to Trump administration officials conducting a review of vetting procedures.

    The administration also wants to subject more visa applicants to intense security reviews and have embassies spend more time interviewing each applicant. The changes could apply to people from all over the world, including allies like France and Germany.

    http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/4/4/1650051/-Trump-admin-weighs-extreme-vetting-plan-to-force-travelers-to-give-up-social-media-passwords

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-administration-considers-far-reaching-steps-for-extreme-vetting-1491303602

    ReplyDelete
  9. Anonymous7:51 AM

    Sean Spicer publicly slammed ProPublica and they responded with a must-read flurry of damning facts

    At a White House press briefing, Press Secretary Sean Spicer responded to a question about a report in ProPublica that shows Donald Trump made changes to his business trust after taking office. The change allows him to withdraw profits at any time, without any public notice or scrutiny and reportedly gives him access to the behind-the-scenes financials of the 400 companies he was supposed to separate himself from before taking office. Spicer’s response was to slam ProPublica, dismissing them as nothing more than a “left-wing blog” and glossing over the eagle-eyed reporting done by Derek Kravitz and Al Shaw.

    That approach isn’t working out so well for Spicer. ProPublica replied with a flurry of damning facts, bringing all the receipts and it is going viral for great reason. See the tweetstorm of fury below:

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/4/4/1650027/-Sean-Spicer-publicly-slammed-ProPublica-and-they-responded-with-a-must-read-flurry-of-damning-facts

    ReplyDelete
  10. Anonymous8:02 AM

    The FBI is planning to create a special section based at its Washington headquarters to co-ordinate its investigation of Russian activities designed to influence the 2016 presidential election, according to a person familiar with the plan.

    The move, a sign of how seriously the bureau is taking allegations of Russian meddling in American politics, is also aimed at giving FBI director James Comey greater visibility into the investigation’s granular details. “It’s meant to surge resources,” said one FBI agent.

    Creation of the temporary unit mirrors the bureau’s approach to other sensitive investigations, including the WikiLeaks disclosure of classified US government documents and Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while secretary of state.

    The FBI generally prefers to run investigations from one of its 56 field offices, but the high-profile nature of the sprawling Russia inquiry is seen as requiring a central manager, according to current and former officials.

    “It’s getting unwieldy,” said one person briefed on the plan. “It’s too big and it’s on the front page of the newspaper every day.”

    An FBI spokeswoman declined to comment.

    The bureau is expected to recall from the field an FBI counter-intelligence specialist to oversee the squad, which is to begin work next month. If the new team — with about 20 dedicated agents drawn from across the country — operates as similar units have in the past, its chief would brief Mr Comey on a weekly basis while providing daily updates for deputy director Andrew McCabe.

    “We did it quite regularly,” said Robert Anderson of Navigant, a business consulting group, who was a former executive assistant director of the FBI. “Any time there’s a big case, a giant case, it becomes a huge resource drain across the organisation.”

    Russian activities under investigation include alleged hacking into Democratic computer networks and reported contacts between Russians and representatives of the Drumpf campaign. Michael Flynn, the president’s national security adviser, was fired in February after allegedly lying to vice-president Mike Pence about conversations he had last year with Sergei Kislyak, Russian ambassador to the US.

    “The FBI, as part of our counter-intelligence mission, is investigating the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election and that includes investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Drumpf campaign and the Russian government and whether there was any co-ordination between the campaign and Russia’s efforts,” Mr Comey told the House Intelligence Committee earlier this month.

    FBI investigators also will evaluate the potential for criminal charges in the Russia matter. But some investigators are pessimistic about the likelihood of making a case, given the difficulty of obtaining evidence from Russia.

    “Unlike the CIA, we have to bring things that go, potentially, in front of a jury,” said one agent. “We have to certify evidence. A place like Russia is such a black hole. It’s so hard to prove you’re bringing evidence that hasn’t been tampered with.”

    As the FBI probe proceeds, both the Senate and House intelligence committees are pursuing their own Russia-related investigations. Republican Senator Richard Burr, who chairs the Senate panel, said on Wednesday that the committee was “looking anywhere intelligence suggests that there might have been any type of relationship of effort to influence US elections”.

    In an appearance on Wednesday night before an industry group, Mr Comey declined to discuss the investigation. But he said the FBI would follow the facts without regard for potential political consequences. “We’re not on anybody’s side, ever,” he said. “We’re not considering whose ox will be gored. We just don’t care.”

    https://www.ft.com/content/40498d94-155b-11e7-80f4-13e067d5072c

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous5:00 PM

      Criminal minds! Go get em!

      Delete
  11. Anonymous8:04 AM

    Trump aide Sebastian Gorka got caught editing his own Wikipedia page—and now he's dodging questions

    http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/4/4/1650049/-Trump-aide-Sebastian-Gorka-was-caught-editing-Wikipedia-page-about-himself-and-refuses-to-talk

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous9:47 AM

      lol scum bucket

      Delete
  12. Anonymous8:11 AM

    This clearly shows that either tRump was already in bed with Putin or at least was already being groomed for and by him YEARS AGO.
    WHEN WILL WE FINALLY THROW THE SPY AND TRAITOR OUT??? He should NOT be allowed to put in ANY more pimps of his. Each and every person chosen by him HAS TO BE thrown out, because, even if they are not now, they most likely will be groomed/blackmailed into spying for Russia!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous9:48 AM

      He owes the putin bank millions and billions. And china too. Time to overthrow and protest trump out of office today.

      Delete
  13. Anonymous8:36 AM

    What a bunch of losers Pee-nochio has assembled for his cabinet.

    Better call Don's Johns to pump out the swamp!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous9:49 AM

      don johns honey wagon driven by con way and bannon. The disgusting nasty creatures of doom.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous9:50 AM

      Conway looks like a barracuda and bannon looks like a blow fish in the swamp

      Delete
  14. Anonymous8:44 AM

    DAMN THAT SARAH PALIN

    That crossed eyed retard was entrusted to keep an eye on Putin as he rears his head.

    Putin not only crossed into America without a fight, Putin now has a foothold in the Republican Party, White House, Puppet Donald Trump, Trump's administration and his cabinet.

    SARAH PALIN YOU'RE FIRED

    “As Putin rears his head and comes into the airspace of the United States of America, where do they go? It’s Alaska. It’s just right over the border. It is from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there, they are right next to our state.”
    -Sarah Palin

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous9:51 AM

      Come on now, Sarah Palin is too busy to keep her one good eye on Putin.

      Sarah has to keep her good eye on her adult bully child who beat up his pregnant girlfriend and may have beaten up his ex-wife. If Track was a real man he would fight Sarah or Todd.

      Sarah is probably thankful she finally got rid of her sexually promiscuous daughter with children from different men. Her main worry now is her high school daughter, fingers crossed Piper doesn't turn out to be like her older siblings.

      Delete
  15. Anonymous9:13 AM

    DAMN THAT SARAH PALIN?

    HOW ABOUT DAMN THAT IVANKA!

    Where was that Women's Advocate? Skiing? Drinking her Château Ausone and eating frog legs?


    NEWS
    APR 3 2017, 6:23 PM ET

    Trump Pulls Back Obama-Era Protections For Women Workers

    With little notice, President Donald Trump recently signed an executive order that advocates say rolls back hard-fought victories for women in the workplace.

    Tuesday's "Equal Pay Day" — which highlights the wage disparity between men and women — is the perfect time to draw more attention to the president's action, activists say.

    On March 27, Trump revoked the 2014 Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces order then-President Barack Obama put in place to ensure that companies with federal contracts comply with 14 labor and civil rights laws. The Fair Pay order was put in place after a 2010 Government Accountability Office investigation showed that companies with rampant violations were being awarded millions in federal contracts.

    In an attempt to keep the worst violators from receiving taxpayer dollars, the Fair Pay order included two rules that impacted women workers: paycheck transparency and a ban on forced arbitration clauses for sexual harassment, sexual assault or discrimination claims.

    Read more at:
    http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/4/4/1650049/-Trump-aide-Sebastian-Gorka-was-caught-editing-Wikipedia-page-about-himself-and-refuses-to-talk

    ReplyDelete
  16. Anonymous9:35 AM

    Back channel...side channel...front channel:

    Rachel Maddow ~ Former Trump
    Adviser Duped By Russian Spies


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSX_5YFoavw

    ReplyDelete
  17. Anonymous9:42 AM

    OT?
    https://thinkprogress.org/trump-jr-susan-rice-cernovich-37770c61c597

    ReplyDelete
  18. Anonymous9:46 AM

    Putin is driving the international republican party clown car into a deep dark hole. He is attempting to hack elections all over the world that lets him in. Just slam the door on this little tiny prick and remove him from the airwaves. Little tiny stubby dicktaters have no place in the future of this world. Bin Laden and saddam hussian was not trying to control everyone and everything but they were dicktaters to their citizens. The Russian people are begging for help to rid them of putin.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous5:03 PM

      They will get help soon...

      Delete
  19. Anonymous10:48 AM

    Erik Prince scares the hell out of me.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Anonymous11:28 AM

    http://www.politicususa.com/2017/04/04/adam-schiff-blew-donald-trumps-russia-cover-story-million-pieces.html

    ReplyDelete
  21. Anonymous7:39 PM

    The only thing that motivates Putin, Trump, Flynn & the Manafort group is "What's in it for me?"

    Follow the money.

    ReplyDelete

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