Four Details about Surveillance and the Flynn Ouster

It turns out Trump is on pace to fire a person every week, just like in his reality show. As you surely know, Mike Flynn has been ousted as National Security Advisor, along with his Deputy, KT McFarland.

There has been some confusion about what intelligence the spooks who just caused Flynn to be fired relied on. So let’s start with this detail from last night’s WaPo story:

After the sanctions were rolled out, the Obama administration braced itself for the Russian retaliation. To the surprise of many U.S. officials, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Dec. 30 that there would be no response. Trump praised the decision on Twitter.

Intelligence analysts began to search for clues that could help explain Putin’s move. The search turned up Kislyak’s communications, which the FBI routinely monitors, and the phone call in question with Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general with years of intelligence experience.

From that call and subsequent intercepts, FBI agents wrote a secret report summarizing ­Flynn’s discussions with Kislyak.

That is, in response to questions elicited by Putin’s response, analysts actually read the intercepts of the Flynn-Kislyak call, which led to further monitoring of the conversations. And contrary to what HPSCI Chair Devin Nunes is whining, FBI would have access to Flynn’s side of the call right away, because they would own the tap (and in any case, they’d get unminimized copies of anything from NSA).

Some have pointed to this passage to suggest that the FBI was always listening in.

U.S. intelligence reports during the 2016 presidential campaign showed that Kislyak was in touch with Flynn, officials said. Communications between the two continued after Trump’s victory on Nov. 8, according to officials with access to intelligence reports on the matter.

It’s quite likely that’s not the case. After all, even Michael McFaul (who served as Ambassador to Russia at the beginning of the Obama Administration) said it was normal to have such calls before inauguration. Moreover, the FBI wouldn’t need to access the content of communications to learn that they were taking place. The metadata would be enough. And the actual content of the contacts would remain in some server in Utah.

Also, some have suggested that Flynn must be the Trump associate against whom a single FISA order was obtained in October. That’s unlikely, first of all, because if there were a FISA order on Flynn, then the FBI wouldn’t have needed the weird Putin response to lead them to read the actual content of calls (not to mention, the WaPo is clear that the contacts were collected as a result of normal monitoring of a foreign diplomat). Furthermore, most reports of that FISA order suggest the FBI first asked for four orders (in June and July) but only got one, in October. So it’s likely that FISA order covers another of Trump’s Russian buddies.

Finally, remember that for a great deal of SIGINT, FBI wouldn’t need a warrant. That’s because Obama changed the EO 12333 sharing rules just 4 days after the IC started getting really suspicious about Flynn’s contacts with Russia. That would make five years of intercepts available to FBI without a warrant in any counterintelligence cases, as this one is.

Update: Corrected KT McFarland instead of KC. Also, I’ve been informed she’ll stick around until Trump names a new NSA.

Marcy has been blogging full time since 2007. She’s known for her live-blogging of the Scooter Libby trial, her discovery of the number of times Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was waterboarded, and generally for her weedy analysis of document dumps.

Marcy Wheeler is an independent journalist writing about national security and civil liberties. She writes as emptywheel at her eponymous blog, publishes at outlets including the Guardian, Salon, and the Progressive, and appears frequently on television and radio. She is the author of Anatomy of Deceit, a primer on the CIA leak investigation, and liveblogged the Scooter Libby trial.

Marcy has a PhD from the University of Michigan, where she researched the “feuilleton,” a short conversational newspaper form that has proven important in times of heightened censorship. Before and after her time in academics, Marcy provided documentation consulting for corporations in the auto, tech, and energy industries. She lives with her spouse and dog in Grand Rapids, MI.

60 replies
  1. Henry says:

    Just to clarify, the Flynn-Kislyak intercepts would not have been examined if not for Moscow’s surprising lack of retaliation?

  2. Joanne Leon says:

    Who are the other likely “Trump Russian buddies”? Serious question. Who has been implicated or hinted about, other than Flynn and the former campaign guy Manafort? I ignored a lot of the Trump and Hillary campaign dirt so maybe I missed some big ones.

    On the issue of using surveillance data to take down political enemies: It’s been very, very, very clear that Brennan IC and Hillary buddies have been after Flynn for many months. It’s also clear they used surveillance data to take him down, and it was a priority. If I was on the other political side (actually tbf I’m not on any political party side anymore, both make me sick) I’d claim that this is the “persecution of political enemies” that the executive order prohibits.  Just look at Hillary’s Twitter response today. Pretty foolish to gloat like that imho, but she just couldn’t help herself because she has such stellar political instincts.

    But let’s be honest, nobody is following ANY rules right now. It’s a free-for-all and it has been since before the election, and went completely out of control after the Dems didn’t get their slam dunk candidate elected because she and her geniuses totally f’d it up.

    It was shocking to see McFaul defend this, btw. But he and his buddies are now apparently worried about conversations they’ve had with foreign contacts. Given their involvement in coups, organizing ultranationalist battalions, and such, it’s pretty scary to think about what could go down if Flynn’s convos with Russian ambo are the new standard for who gets taken down. Heckuva precedent to set.

  3. trevanion says:

    Good dissection of the WaPo description, but a pretty big grain of salt is warranted for the WaPo’s report of the undertaking of a “search for clues that could help explain…”  The usual stenography is likely in play on that particular part, which of course does not automatically mean it’s false. However, what is described in the WaPo is more than a little too neat and smacks of an alternative reality being offered up. The man was a lot of things, but no one with any time in that sphere would ever make a call across the Atlantic without an awareness of all the ears, whatever the then-current niceties of 12333. Something still does not add up.

    • emptywheel says:

      It would have been across town, not across the Atlantic.

      Even by Kislyak’s account they used more than calls. And I’ve seen speculation that they had some kind of code for messages. So it’s possible this wasn’t all on an obviously tapped line.

  4. SpaceLifeForm says:

    OT:  (going dark is a best option.  I agree with the defense/offense point.  But a convention will make things worse.  Basically it is doublespeak,  from a lawyer. It is also lip service. Microsoft, while actually being more realistic sans Balmer, is not going to stop helping the us gubmint spy)

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2017/02/14/microsoft-brad-smith-digital-geneva-convention/97883896/

    In the cyber realm, tech much[sic – sb must] be committed to “100% defense and zero percent offense,” Smith said at the opening keynote at the RSA computer security conference.

     
    Smith called for a “digital Geneva Convention,” like the one created in the aftermath of World War II which set ground rules for how conduct during wartime, defining basic rights for civilians caught up armed conflicts.

    In the 21st century such rules are needed “to commit governments to protect civilians from nation-state attacks in times of peace,” a draft of Smith’s speech released to USA TODAY said.

    [Sounds like he knows there will be no peace, that there will always be an excuse for nation-state attacks on civilians]

  5. Don Bacon says:

    Mike Flynn, fired by one president for insubordination and by another for lying. Quite a record. Might make a good politician?

  6. SpaceLifeForm says:

    OT?: #UnfitForOffice

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/george-w-bush-adviser-eliot-cohen-donald-trump-mentally-unwell-us-president-white-house-a7568281.html

    George W Bush’s senior adviser describes Donald Trump as mentally unwell

    ‘I’ve been in this town for 26 years. I have never seen anything like this. I genuinely do not think this is a mentally healthy president,” says Mr Cohen

    After meeting with members of Mr Trump’s transition team, Professor Cohen warned that working for the billionaire businessman could mean “compromising one’s integrity and reputation”.

    “Their mistakes – because there will be mistakes – will be exceptional.”

    In December, three leading professors of psychiatry wrote to Barack Obama expressing their grave concerns over Trump’s mental stability:

    “His widely reported symptoms of mental instability – including grandiosity, impulsivity, hypersensitivity to slights or criticism, and an apparent inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality – lead us to question his fitness for the immense responsibilities of the office,” the professors from Harvard Medical School and the University of California wrote to the then President, urging him to order a “full medical and neuropsychiatric evaluation” of the then President-elect.

    • maybe ryan says:

      Good God.  Thank the lord the outgoing President from the losing party didn’t “order” the President-elect to submit to a psychiatric exam.

      Whatever the sanity of Trump, and I do have my questions, I’m skeptical of the mental stability of the doctors who grandiosely believe they could derail an election that way.  They are not in touch with reality either.

  7. bmaz says:

    Really?

    Where in the world does your comment come from??

    To both you and Joanne Leon above, this is just sick and bonkers.

    It is just freaking beyond deranged to try to impute the Trumpian manure to Clinton at this point.

    • maybe ryan says:

      BMaz,

       

      I’m not positive what you’re responding to, but if to JLH, I think his comment was serious, not sarcastic, and that he’s referring to the Clinton and Clinton-aide repartee on Twitter, telling Flynn “what goes around comes around” for their nasty “put her in jail” crap and for their pizzagate tweets.

  8. Joanne Leon says:

    bmaz, it’s not clear what you are referring to. I can’t tell what comment you’re replying to or what specifically in my comment you are referring to.

    • bmaz says:

      Honestly, if you want to join in with some crack ass idiot propagating pizza gate, just to pettily crank on Hillary Clinton, I really have nothing for that horse manure.

      • Joanne Leon says:

        bmaz, I still don’t understand what you’re saying. Where did I reference pizzagate or join in with anybody else referring to it? To be honest, I think that might be the first time I ever publicly typed the word and if I did type it before it was definitely in a WTF context.

        Rereading my orig comment: Are you saying I’m signing on to some pizzagate thing because I thought it was a bad idea for Hillary to publicly gloat about getting rid of Flynn? Because that’s what I meant in my reference to Hillary’s tweet today. It wouldn’t matter what else her tweet referenced, that was almost immaterial. It was the political decision to publicly celebrate Flynn’s take down that I thought was a really bad idea.

        And I think that’s consistent with most of her political decisions — really bad.  She and the Establishment Dems are the reason why we’re in this mess, imho, and why they’re making that mess even worse post-election by working overtime to tear the place down rather than assess, regroup and do something other than “we’re not Trump” in 2018, wreck everything they possibly can wreck, and railroad us into the war Hillary wanted (as if we don’t have enough new warmongers in power).  I could go on for hours about that and it wouldn’t have a damned thing to do with pizzagate.

        If that’s not what you’re referring to in the 1 comment I posted (+ now 2 replies to you) then I have no f’ing idea what you’re talking about.

      • Joanne Leon says:

        This makes no sense.  I made no comments about pizza gate nor did I join in with anybody else who did. Search my comments everywhere. It’s not a topic I even talk about.

  9. John Casper says:

    Joanne,

    You wrote, “I ignored a lot of the Trump and Hillary campaign dirt so maybe I missed some big ones.”

    Then in the next sentence you wrote, “On the issue of using surveillance data to take down political enemies: It’s been very, very, very clear that Brennan IC and Hillary buddies have been after Flynn for many months.”

    Which one of your statements was false?

    • Joanne Leon says:

      Well thanks, John Casper, for calling me a liar. I really shouldn’t bother explaining myself but…. first, notice I said “I ignored a lot.” That doesn’t mean all.

      I research and write about wars & foreign policy every day, publish 1-2x per week plus a weekly podcast. So it was impossible to miss the conflict between Hillary camp and Flynn camp.

      I’ve also focused on the war in Syria/Iraq and Ukraine a lot for the past ~3 years.  It takes a lot of my free time, leaving little for the daily grind of campaign dirt from all sides (which I ended up avoiding because I hate perpetual campaigns & low signal/noise). But since Flynn, the CIA, and Hillary’s surrogates were in the news with respect to Syria a lot, I could see the battle that was going on.

      • John Casper says:

        Joanne,

        Is “Neither is false”  false, untrue or incomplete?

        For how “many months” has it been “very, very, very clear” to you “that Brennan IC and Hillary buddies have been after Flynn?”

  10. Avattoir says:

    Sometimes I muse on what it’d have been like to have had the internet, particularly this blog, running during 1972-4.

    One thing that’s different today: greatly abbreviated spacetime from inauguration OTOH, to What did the president know and when? on the other.

    Suggested Cable Series: All The President’s Mendicants.

  11. Ed Walker says:

    Tonight’s installment from the NYT: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/14/us/politics/russia-intelligence-communications-trump.html

    Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials.

     

  12. pdaly says:

    This NY Times addendum makes me think the number is four (including Manafort), as “at least four” suggests possibly 5 or more, whereas the new “at least three” suggests possibly 4 or more.

    “Correction: February 14, 2017 
    An earlier version of this article misstated the number of people (in addition to Paul Manafort) whom the F.B.I. has examined. It is at least three, not at least four.”

  13. martin says:

    geeezus, …Alexa, update my order for fresh popcorn to every half hour. Drone it my patio.Oh, and add pizza at 6pm. At this rate this shit is developing in real time… along with all the twitter shit, who else is glued to their screens…

    note to self, for the time being, postpone getting a real life.

    • lefty665 says:

      Please ask her to double up the order for delivery to my house too. What kind of toppings do you get on your pizzas?

      Amazing to watch the neocons, IC and Dems unite to prevent lessening of tensions with the Ruskies.  It is a feeding frenzy. The neocons and IC are one thing, but the Dems cannot have given much thought about the consequences of shedding Trump (loose cannon that he is) and having !@#$%^ Pence as prez. He’d have us on a new Crusade against the Shiites and the Ruskies in a heartbeat.

      Flynn was clearly doing exactly what Trump told him to do, letting the Russians know a change in policy was coming real soon now.  Why was Pence out flapping his jaw about it in the first place?  Rather than sympathy for the poor baby who had been deceived (not very Christian to mislead him) maybe Pence should be getting a swift kick in the butt for not keeping his trap shut and for grandstanding with the press.

      • martin says:

        What kind of toppings do you get on your pizzas

        NatSec cheeze, IC pepperoni/FBI sausage, Whitehouse ham,  RUred sauce, on  Deepstate crust. Baked @ full media temp, till leaking RUred through bubbling hot NatSec layer.  Sprinkled w/ dried RUred outrage hot peppers  and Notfake parmesian cheese.

        Supreme9thcircut Potus/IC scandalous pizza. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.!!! Just like I like it.

        :)

  14. GKJames says:

    How likely is it that this to-do will fall into the category, “I could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and no one would care”? We know what Republicans would do with something like this if the president were a Democrat. We also know that, intellectually bankrupt as they are, they’re not going to do much about it with THIS president. Main Street, by and large, will give him a pass. Which leaves the press, hammering away at Teflon; and back we are to the “biased liberal media”. Grim, though the good news — so far — is that neither Pelosi nor Schumer has uttered an inanity to dilute the Administration’s buffoonery.

  15. bevin says:

    The insouciance with which people are rallying around a mutiny in the Intelligence Agencies is indicative of a corruption at the heart of US political life. There is nothing ‘democratic’ about what the media and the CIA are doing to intimidate Trump and his supporters.
    Nor is their resentment of him in any way connected with concern over civil rights, immigrants or the poor. It is all about his threat to the nightmare ‘hegemony’ project which has soaked the planet in blood for seventy years and has led directly to the killings of millions, tens of millions, throughout the world- a large number of them at the orders of the very agencies currently attacking Trump. With US backed militias currently engaged in terrorising the populations of Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, the Ukraine and US forces engaged in most of those and many other countries, the concern in Washington is that all this mayhem may be coming to, if not an end, at least a period of calming.
    And that is what a ‘panel of psychiatrists’ finds disturbing- that the new President may be insufficiently invested in the collective megalomania which has thrown up a bi-partisan policy of replacing-by any means necessary- insufficiently submissive governments with those which do as they are bid. This is what lies behind the saintly concerns of the Washington Post and NY Times editorial boards- Trump is unfit for office because, among the nonsensical policies which he espouses the worst of all-confrontation with Russia-is missing. He seems to have lost the plot.
    As to the Surveillance involved- the open use of these mass surveillance powers in order to leak information to political enemies can only be justified by enemies of democracy. Not that I have any illusions as to the substance of the facade of democracy behind which the oligarchs skulk-it may be that this stripping away of the mask is a good thing. Maybe living on the cusp of a coup brings the USA closer to the Revolution which will probably be required to bring matters under control. It is just important that people understand where they are going: behind the velvet glove of SNL bien pensant comedy is an iron fist. And when it strikes everyone to the left of Chuck Schumer is going to be looking for a place to hide. It is not the authoritarian in the White House but the authoritarians who don’t want him there, we need to worry about.
    Is everyone sure that they would prefer a CIA engineered government to Donald Trump? Plenty of those who thought that Sukarno was a narcissitic kleptocrat that Indonesia would be better without came to regret the replacement. Plenty of those who thought that Allende was a threat to property ended up on the wrong side of the military dictator’s regime.
    I guess it might be said that, having been complicit in coups around the globe and written off concentration camps, genocides and interminable wars as part of the price of preserving freedom the people deserve a taste of the medicine they have so casually prescribed for others.

    • lefty665 says:

      Meet the New McCarthyism, same as the old McCarthyism.

      “With US backed militias currently engaged in terrorizing the populations of Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, the Ukraine and US forces engaged in most of those and many other countries, the concern in Washington is that all this mayhem may be coming to, if not an end, at least a period of calming.”  Deserves repeating, thank you.

    • Don Bacon says:

      Yes, the “national security” apparatus that was put in place in 1947 has only led to national insecurity, plus of course large profits for those engaged in the international mayhem that bevin remarks on. Trump threatens that, especially the new opportunities for a war with Russia, therefore the resistance to any Trump policies to change the “national security” failed strategy.

    • greengiant says:

      How many deep states are there anyways?  Is it all about oil and which mob one is in?   We have the Saudi-Neo-Cons with blood on their hands in Libya,Syria,Yemen, Ukraine,  usually detected by their virulent anti Iran, anti Shia  etc,  and we have the Putin-Russian mob/oligarchs bought FBI ( as opposed to Neo Con FBI ) –  [Trump tbd for some].   Keep ignoring who bought Focus GPS.  Assume Clinton was expected to win.  Assume Carter Page works for no one but himself.  WTF.   Best of all are Donald’s tweets this morning,  Ivanka you are needed.

      • martin says:

        Best of all are Donald’s tweets this morning,  Ivanka you are needed.

        :)

        @realDonaldTrump  Tweets from #parallel_universe.

        unfuckingbelievable  …DOH! I doth repeat myself.

        ya know, if someone in the 80’s/90’s had predicted a US President ..tweeting, they’d been laughed into obscurity.  But electing Trump tweeting Trump shit.. locked away for insanity.

  16. John Casper says:

    bevin,

    You wrote, “With US backed militias currently engaged in terrorising the populations of Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, the Ukraine and US forces engaged in most of those and many other countries, the concern in Washington is that all this mayhem may be coming to, if not an end, at least a period of calming.”

    Has President Trump withdrawn any U.S. support for militias, or troops from anywhere?

    Did you forget about “Yemen: First Drone Strike Under Trump Administration Kills 10.”
    https://www.democracynow.org/2017/1/24/headlines/yemen_first_drone_strike_under_trump_administration_kills_10

    • lefty665 says:

      Could it be that Trump, like JFK with the Bay of Pigs, is getting schooled in the folly of following in his predecessors and the ICs footsteps?

      We’re only about three weeks in, it takes a little time to turn the ship of state. I’m looking for pulling our troops back from the current massive NATO exercise on Russia’s borders as a sign that policy is changing. Things like that and stopping stupid sh*t like the Yemen debacle will be steps in the right direction.  We’ll see whether Mattis wins the war with the CIA on arming and supporting al Qaeda in Syria too.  DoD has not been very happy about CIA supported and trained Jihadis shooting at our troops.

      Trump does not seem to have grasped that the Sunnis, not the Shiites, are the big state sponsors of terrorism. It is the Wahhabis and people like brother Bandar Bush. They are who attacked us on 9/11. Dunno how long it will take him to figure that out.

  17. Don Bacon says:

    Like JFK, Trump has now run afoul of the CIA, accusing them of giving out classified information “like candy.” (So Trump should avoid any open motorcades in Dealey Plaza, or elsewhere.)

    • martin says:

      Trump should avoid any open motorcades in Dealey Plaza, or elsewhere.

      Bingo! My thoughts exactly. Cue Jim Garrison/Col. Fletcher Prouty letter : Early CIA guy..Ed Lansdale w/2 men in photo on corner of Dealy Plaza.  Paraphrasing  Garrison 1967.. “CIA IS the government. Congress=debating team. Fascism will come to Murika in form of …National Security”

      Meanwhile, Flynn= DeepState=SekritTeam warning shot across the bow of USS Trump.

      http://www.ratical.com/ratville/JFK/ST/ST.html

      • lefty665 says:

        Variation on the theme: “When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross” Sinclair Lewis.

        Seems to have been written with Mike Pence in mind.  Just add corollaries for the IC and fat cat elites and it’s up to snuff.

  18. RAM says:

    Assuming the stories in the media are correct, I’m still confused why Flynn lied to Pence and, presumably, the FBI. If he did what he said he did (remembering it’s always dangerous to assume anyone in the Trump gang telling the truth about anything) and talked about what he said he talked about, that would have been pretty much SOP from what I’ve read. Not at all like Kissinger persuading the South Vietnamese to leave the peace talks. So why the lie? There’s obviously a lot more going on here than we’re being told right now.

  19. martin says:

    emptywheel said:

    There has been some confusion about what intelligence the spooks who just caused Flynn to be fired relied on.

    Fired??

    • lefty665 says:

      They both knew whatever they said would be intercepted. Maybe the conversations were not all that dramatic.  We haven’t seen a transcript.  Once again it’s long on accusation and short on facts.

      They could have been along the lines of “You Americans are being jerks”. Answer “Yeah I know, be patient, things will be different soon.” It may not have been explicit,  just observing what they both knew, on January 20th many things would change.

      If something like that is the case it would go a long way towards explaining Flynn’s assertions that he had not been discussing policy, because there was nothing specific. More Rodney King than Curtis LeMay.

       

      • Don Bacon says:

        Yes, reports are that nothing substantive was said. The problem is that Flynn said that sanctions were not mentioned, and apparently they were. Flynn lied to VP Pence about it.  The Flynn said he couldn’t remember. So not only did Flynn lie, but he proved himself incapable of functioning properly as national security advisor and then Trump decided he’d lost trust in him and fired Flynn. Asked for his resignation — same thing.

        Regarding “things would change” under Trump, Obama was recorded saying the same thing before he left office.

        • lefty665 says:

          Trump’s inaugural speech lined up largely parallel with Obama’s ’08 inaugural speech too. Be ironic if we get the Change Obama promised in ’08 from Trump in ’17.

          More years of Same will be a disaster. At the core that’s what the fight is about, will we get change or will the establishment continue to run things as they have been.  We may not survive if Trump loses this fight. I did not want him as president (or Hillary for that matter), but I sure don’t want us to continue on the road to nuclear hell we’ve been been getting pushed down by our establishment, Borg, deep state, whatever you want to call it.

          Our best interest, and the world’s, is to work with the Russians on common goals, like fighting terrorism instead of supporting it as the CIA is doing in Syria and elsewhere. In a sane world CIA’s actions in support of al Qaeda and ISIL in Syria would be called treason. Instead we got leaks that had the effect of trying to prevent the new administration from taking office. Now we get more leaks that disrupt its efforts to change course away from nuclear war by finding common ground where we have interests in common with Russia.

          Flynn is a dingbat, I’m not sorry to see him go, but he’s just a pawn used to prevent Trump from changing course away from war with Russia. It is no coincidence that Flynn has lost his job for talking with the Russians.  That is the message from the Borg.

        • martin says:

          Flynn. Asked for his resignation — same thing.

          No, it’s not.  Because he resigned, Flynn can’t file for unemployment . :)

          Moreover, it puts the nexus of wrongdoing in the “ambiguous” column, at least when Flynn applies for a job at Fox.

  20. maybe ryan says:

    I’m trying to respond to Don Bacon at 10:01, but for some reason it’s not lining up there. Anyway, Don, you’ve hit on what really happened. Flynn wasn’t ousted because of press outrage or Beltway outrage in general, nor was it in any real sense a deep state attack. He was ousted for going up against Pence. What is clear is that Pence eventually laid it on the line here, and Trump didn’t want to get rid of Flynn right to the end, and still won’t stop whining about it (it’s the fake media’s fault, he said today.) But Pence forced his hand, probably by threatening to resign. Trump knows if he loses Pence he’s done for.

    • John Casper says:

      maybe ryan,

      Doesn’t GOP want Pence to replace theDonald so it can pass TPP and the rest of the socialism-for-the-elites agenda their base doesn’t like?

  21. Don Bacon says:

    @maybe ryan
    Yes, the replies don’t work right.
    I think you’ve got it (I didn’t) — Pence was the aggrieved one who caused the Flynn firing, b/c Pence repeated on a TV show what Flynn had told him, which was not the truth as was revealed later.

    • John Casper says:

      @maybe ryan, @Don,

      I donated more than $300 last year. Will try to do better this year.

      Please  donate more so they can fix it. https://www.emptywheel.net/support/

    • lefty665 says:

      Pence as the poor wounded aggrieved party is bullshit. He deserved a swift kick in the butt for flapping his jaw in public regardless of what Flynn told him.  If Trump had wanted him to know what was going on he’d have told him.

      Pence is getting kid glove treatment from the press as a card carrying member of the hysterically anti Russian, neocon, Dem elite, msm D.C. Borg. This brouhaha is simply the next round after the Obama/Brennan/Clapper post election crap and the Hillary hysteria that the Ruskies stole the election by revealing the DNC/Podesta email truth.

      We’ll all be dead if we don’t get off this track to war with Russia.  Trump’s a hell of a weak and erratic reed to lean on but he’s all we’ve got. Better hope he’s successful.

       

       

       

      • martin says:

        yeah, well if the IC has their way, Trump will “die in jail”:

        John Schindler, a former National Security Agency analyst and current columnist for the New York Observer, said Wednesday that the intelligence community will go “nuclear” against President Donald Trump.

        The national security columnist also quoted a senior intelligence official telling him that Trump “will die in jail.” “Now we go nuclear. [Intelligence community] war going to new levels. Just got an [email from] from senior [intelligence community] friend, it began: ‘He will die in jail,’” Schindler tweeted.

        http://dailycaller.com/2017/02/15/former-nsa-analyst-claims-intel-community-will-go-nuclear-against-trump/

         

        ut oh.  Time to start digging a bunker. :)

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