Putting a Face (Mine) to the Risks Posed by GOP Games on Mueller Investigation

I’d like to put a human face — my own — to the risk posed by GOP gamesmanship on the Mueller investigation.

Sometime last year, I went to the FBI and provided information on a person whom I had come to believe had played a significant role in the Russian election attack on the US. Since that time, a number of public events have made it clear I was correct.

I never in my life imagined I would share information with the FBI, especially not on someone I had a journalistic relationship with. I did so for many reasons. Some, but not all, of the reasons are:

  • I believed he was doing serious harm to innocent people
  • I believed (others agreed) that reporting the story at that time would risk doing far more harm than good
  • I had concrete evidence he was lying to me and others, including but not limited to other journalists
  • I had reason to believe he was testing ways to tamper with my website
  • I believed that if the FBI otherwise came to understand what kind of information I had, their likely investigative steps would pose a risk to the privacy of my readers

To protect the investigation, I will not disclose this person’s true identity or the identity and/or role I believe he played in the attack. Nor will I disclose when I went to the FBI. I did so on my own, without subpoena; I did that in an effort to protect people who have spoken to me in confidence and other journalists. Largely because this effort involved a number of last minute trips to other cities, I spent around $6K of my own money traveling to meet with lawyers and for the meeting with the FBI.

I always planned to disclose this when this person’s role was publicly revealed. But I’m doing so now for two reasons. First, I think the public deserves to see the text he sent me at 3:15 PM on November 9, 2016.

The substance of the text — that the Trump team started focusing on Syria right after the election — has been corroborated and tied to their discussions with Russia at least twice since then. Most importantly, in his statement to Congress, Jared Kushner explained his request for a back channel with the Russians by describing an effort to cooperate on Syria.

The Ambassador [Sergei Kislyak] expressed similar sentiments about relations, and then said he especially wanted to address U.S. policy in Syria, and that he wanted to convey information from what he called his “generals.” He said he wanted to provide information that would help inform the new administration. He said the generals could not easily come to the U.S. to convey this information and he asked if there was a secure line in the transition office to conduct a conversation. General Flynn or I explained that there were no such lines. I believed developing a thoughtful approach on Syria was a very high priority given the ongoing humanitarian crisis, and I asked if they had an existing communications channel at his embassy we could use where they would be comfortable transmitting the information they wanted to relay to General Flynn.

Less credibly, in the days after Mike Flynn pled guilty, an inflammatory Brian Ross report was corrected to reveal that “shortly after the election” Trump asked Flynn personally to work with Russia on Syria (Ross left ABC yesterday but as far as I understand the corrected story stands).

Retired Lt. Gen Michael Flynn has promised “full cooperation” in the special counsel’s Russia investigation and, according to a confidant, is prepared to testify that Donald Trump directed him to make contact with the Russians, initially as a way to work together to fight ISIS in Syria.


The source said Trump phoned Flynn shortly after the election to explicitly ask him to “serve as point person on Russia,” and to reach out personally to Russian officials to develop strategies to jointly combat ISIS.

The text sent to me matches both those reports — indeed, it makes it clear that “shortly after the election” means just over 14 hours after polls closed. But the text doesn’t come from anyone, like Kushner or Flynn, inside the Trump team. It comes from someone who, I believe, had already done real damage to the United States as part of the Russian attack. That person understood the cooperation with Syria in terms of the US backing Bashar al-Assad, not in terms of fighting ISIS.

I’m making this public now because a David Ignatius report Thursday maps out an imminent deal with Russia and Israel that sounds like what was described to me within hours of the election. This deal appears to be the culmination of an effort that those involved in the Russian attack worked to implement within hours after the election.

The other reason I’m disclosing this now is to put a human face to the danger in which the House Republicans are putting other people who, like me, provided information about the Russian attack on the US to the government.

Several times since I first considered sharing information with the FBI, I’ve asked my attorney to contact the FBI to tell them of what I perceived to be a real threat that arose from sharing that information. One of those times, I let law enforcement officers enter my house without a warrant, without me being present.

My risk isn’t going to go away — indeed, going public like this will surely exacerbate it. That’s to be expected, given the players involved.

But I’m a public figure. If something happens to me — if someone releases stolen information about me or knocks me off tomorrow — everyone will now know why and who likely did it. That affords me a small bit of protection. There are undoubtedly numerous other witnesses who have taken similar risks to share information with the government who aren’t public figures. The Republicans’ ceaseless effort to find out more details about people who’ve shared information with the government puts those people in serious jeopardy.

I’m speaking out because they can’t — and shouldn’t have to.

It infuriates me to observe (and cover) a months-long charade by the House GOP to demand more and more details about those who have shared information with the government, at least some of whom were only trying to prevent real damage to innocent people, all in an attempt to discredit the Mueller investigation. As someone who has worked to rein in dragnets for over a decade, I’m all the more disgusted to see so many lifelong cheerleaders of surveillance pretend to care now.

I only came to be convinced slowly about Russia’s role in the attack and I have been skeptical of the Steele dossier from the day it was published. That said, I obviously do not like Donald Trump — though I’m no Hillary fan, either. But my decision to share information with the FBI had nothing to do with my dislike for Donald Trump. It had to do with the serious damage that someone else I believed to be involved in the Russian attack — someone I had been friendly with — was doing to innocent people, almost all of those people totally uninvolved in American politics.

This investigation is not, primarily, an investigation into Donald Trump. It’s an investigation into people who attacked the United States. It’s time Republicans started acting like that matters.

On Thursday night, I reached out to the Special Counsel’s Office to inquire whether I could post this without damaging the investigation. After sharing the specific language from the passages I felt might pose the biggest concern, last night at 10:15, I was informed they, “take no position” on my posting it.

196 replies
    • TheraP says:

      5/27/09: Marcy Wheeler received an award “for excellence in journalism in the service of the common good.”

      Today we have another example of why.

      I’m putting this reply here to remind all of us that she works “for the common good” – even at personal risk – with no institution to back her or control her.

      Here’s a blog I wrote back on the day she received a prestigious journalism award:


      It includes a plea to contribute to Marcy’s work and my strongest reasons for why.

      Look up to the right of your screen. Click on “SUPPORT” and donate what you can.

      I stand in AWE of this courageous and selfless woman.

      • posaune says:

        I agree totally, TheraP.   EW, I cannot begin to say that it is overwhelming to think about your decisions and how courageous you are.   It is so heartening to see your principles and how you stand for them.   You have given so much to us here and the country.

        Thank you.

  1. Bob Conyers says:

    Thanks for posting this. I realize this was an extremely tough set of choices you made, and I think you’ve done something important, for the Americans who need a sound Mueller investigation, sure, but also to people overseas who will be screwed by stupid gamesmanship.

    I get very frustrated by the tendency of so much of the press, especially at the higher levels, to deal with everything they cover as an abstraction. I realize the ability to create distance is essential for a journalist, but it quickly becomes clear that for most they not only gloss over the effect they have on real lives, but they compound the problem by ignoring the agendas that they have and that they champion.

    Again, I know this is tough, and thanks.

  2. Simplify says:

    Damn, emptywheel, that is a hell of a thing. Thanks for your clarity, earnestness, and insight in sharing this. I’m sure you know that there’s no need to have any compunction about asking anything of your readership, if it can help.

  3. Lisa says:

    Thank you for your moral courage Marcy Wheeler. Trust is something which does not come easily, I trust you to provide reliable analysis regardless of personal fallout. Damn, it’s time I put my money where my mouth is and support your excellent reporting. Again, thank you.

  4. Oldoilfieldhand says:

    Thank you again for your service to the cornerstone of the United States of America, the still free press. You are my hero Marcy!

  5. earlofhuntingdon says:

    I strongly support your actions. Courageous personally, courageous professionally. Few top journalists working for corporate media would out a source, regardless of the lies they were spreading, regardless of the damage they did and could do through them.

    Rather than allow yourself to be used to further a crime or to damage your country – and without the corporate backing available to an MSM reporter – you did the right thing. Your conduct would be rare in New York or Washington. It could not be found in a White House desperate to do Russia’s bidding. I commend your actions. I’m pretty sure Izzy would be proud, too.

    • emptywheel says:

      Thanks. We’ll see how it plays out. I’m sure I did the correct thing. Broke a bunch of cardinal rules of journalism tho.

      • Frank Probst says:

        Given your five bullet points above, I doubt it.  You’re careful with your words, and you know that there’s a difference between a source giving you incorrect information and a source flat-out lying to you.  In the latter case, you have no obligation to protect a source at all, which is what appears to have happened here.  Revealing their identity isn’t “burning a source”.  It’s “exposing a fraud”.  The only disappointing thing about this situation is that since you’re the one who exposed the fraud, we can’t go to you to suss out who the fraud is, because you’re already involved.  There’s only one emptywheel.

      • Buford says:

        Thank you from the bottom of my heart…Just to know there are folks like you willing to sacrifice for the good of others, gives me a boost and a feeling that I am not alone, and I WILL hold up my end of my CIVIL responsibilities….

      • orionATL says:

        you displayed, and thru this post continue to display, physical courage, emptywheel.

        you also displayed another important courage, the courage to go against the rules and norms of your profession (and of others of your social groups). it is a failure of this latter courage that often leads us later to a futile “if only i had…”.

        you will never have to live with “if only i had…”, emptywheel.

        those rules and norms, journalistic in this case, are like the guarantees in the u. s. constitution, well-intentioned and benign taken one-by-one, but endlessly competing with one another and easily woven into an entrapping mesh.

        my observation of you over long time tells me it was your very strong personal integrity and your diamond-hard sense of right that allowed you to act against the social and personal fear restraints that would have tugged at you as you considered what to do.

        i cannot tell you how much i admire thid kind of courage, emptywheel. it can change the course of events.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      I think you correctly resuscitated a few cardinal rules of journalism.  Outing a lying source is not revealing sources and methods.  It is refusing to be used to commit crimes, to damage reputations of a source’s enemies for the convenience of the source, to damage a country in support of its principal opponent.

      Judith Miller, in contrast, for a time with the full support of the New York bloody Times, went to jail to avoid revealing a source almost certainly using her and her paper to commit crimes.  If that was following a rule of journalism, fuck them. 

      Apologies for not being able to back up that opinion with a suitcase full of fifties to keep the likker cabinet full. I’ll do what I can. Thanks, again.

  6. getouttahere says:

    Your courage, honesty and ethics are an inspiration, Ms. Wheeler!
    You help us to keep hope alive.

  7. fastenbulbous says:

    Don’t drink any tea that you didn’t make for yourself.
    Get a bigger dog, maybe several.
    (That you are getting this shit means you are already too close to the truth for some people’s comfort)
    Take care/be safe….

  8. John Casper says:

    What Bob, Simplify, Lisa, oilfield, harpie, eoh, and others in this thread said so well.

    Prof. Wheeler, you are an international treasure.

  9. Avattoir says:

    Recently, indeed just over this last night quite concretely, I’ve been thinking along the lines of how it could useful if the OSC were to have the benefit of input from someone with your gifts – well, you anyway – in reviewing the OSC’s work to date for what if anything Mueller could/should/can/will “report” to the AG (in this case, DAG) in the way of findings on the issue of obstruction of the FBI’s investigation into foreign interference in the 2016 election.

    (The other or “recommendation” component is beyond your legal competence – by which I don’t intend any slight to your forensic gifts, or comment on your NAL status, or view on your judgment [except when it comes to the art of noir crime figure nicknames, of course]. The same can be said as strongly me, about any of us, even about Mueller; the choice is, per DoJ written policy, entirely that of whoever is in the role of the AG, as a confirmed member of the president’s cabinet or, as in this case, that member’s properly appointed designate.)

    My thinking included musing on what such a project would mean for this website, at least during the time of your involvement in such a consultancy. Point being, I’m not surprised by your news here. And I’m even less surprised by your revelation of someone, or several, reaching out in efforts to subvert or otherwise use you. I mean, the huge uptick in just overt efforts in reader comments on this site almost cannot fail to suggest just that, despite so many of those being cartoonish.

    So I take this particular post as both
    1. an unprecedentedly stark assurance from the proprietor of this lemonade stand on how seriously we must take partisan attacks on the OSC, and
    2. that the dynamics of your observer status of the turbulence caused by this extraordinarily heightened exchange of foreign & domestic rat fluids introduced as a function of the Trump candidacy, never truly ‘neutral’ regardless, is more complex than we’re given to grasp.

    I wish you well; I’m sure we all do.

    And we each might do with wishing so to every other of us. The system’s teetering on the brink.

    • emptywheel says:

      Unless I’m vastly mistaken about what I reported to them, I imagine they keep a close eye on what I write.

      • Avattoir says:

        I take some reassurance from that. They SHOULD do just that. There’s just no one else quite like you.

  10. John Casper says:

    Rhetorical–and none of my business–do you have a signed will, advanced directive, funeral plans?

    Rhetorical, if the worst happens, who do you want donations in your name to go to?

    Rhetorical, what advice about personal safety would you provide to someone in your position?

  11. gt2590 says:

    Thank you ma’am!

    I don’t know you personally but thoroughly enjoy your work online and know this was not a rash decision. The time and thought involved proves that.

    I just hope this does not seriously complicate your life too much.



  12. Condor says:

    You are (in the truest, old fashioned, sense of the phrase) an American hero — and I applaud you — as a fine, fine fellow human being.

    Your keen sense of doing the right thing is to be admired.

    And I wish, taught to our children — and their children.

    Travel well; travel light — and know that hundreds of thousands of us… support you. If you ever need anywhere to “hide out for a few weeks” — we all here on the other side of Lake Michigan, have great wi fi, comfy spare bedrooms, dog parks and (pretty good) wine. We always have good hot coffee at the ready — and my wife makes a great fresh fruit filled french crepe, most mornings, too.

    Just say, and the Resistance is at your disposal. I say that jokingly, but the offer is absolutely serious. We also have a mountain hideaway in the Rockies similarly equipped.

    Thank you, Marcy. For the 16 years that I’ve followed you — thank you — from the bottom of my heart.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Heroes don’t make history, people working together make history.  Heroes are stand-ins for the many, so the reader doesn’t lose the thread.

  13. SteveB says:

    Everything I would want to say has been stated by wiser heads up thread, but though you need no further commendation, I would like to add my own expression of admiration and gratitude for the work you have done, the intelligence and integrity you display, and the rigour and fortitude you exemplify.

  14. Yogarhythms says:

    I want to thank you immensely for your dedication to your principles. Trust is granted and when broken there are consequences. Your writing demonstrates your integrity daily. I’m one of many standing with you together. Xoxo

    • Avattoir says:

      In contrast, having thought  a little on this (probably unavoidable), I decided to put away my fishing gear on this one. I think we all here should do that.

      • pseudonymous in nc says:

        Agreed. We’ll probably know soon enough.

        As ever, much respect to EW. This stuff matters.

      • SteveB says:

        Wise observation.  I imagine we all look forward to a time when the full story can emerge without adverse consequences to innocent parties: in the meantime patience and caution seem advisable.

        • Aexia says:

          You can’t seriously be suggesting that giving a platform to Seth Rich conspiracy theorists might impugn their credibility.

        • Danno says:

          Bruce Shapiro has bemoaned on his Facebook page the febrile anti–Trump Russia spigots at The Nation (it starts at the top with Cohen and Katrina) but there are lots of useful idiots out there. Glenn Greenwald’s hysterical and shrieking columns on the topic must shatter the glasswear at The Intercept from time to time.


          But I don’t get two things here:

          Firstly, if a journalistic source is involved in the ratfucking, and using you to do some of it, you owe them nothing. Journalistic sources aren’t owed a version of the Catholic sanctity of the confessional.

          Second, I wonder if Marcy was so suspicious of the Steele dossier and downplaying the change to the Republican Party platform was a product of disinfo directed at EW, as opposed to identifying disinfo further upstream.

  15. Jerrad says:

    Wow. Amazing post.

    I can only imagine how the source of that text would be in a position to know that sort of information.

    It must have taken a fusion of courage and steeley resolve to go to law enforcement.

    Anyway, if your source was lying to journalists and endangering national security, it was the right thing to do.

  16. Kevin Hayden says:

    I wish you complete safety, Marcy, esp from Russian oligarchs and the Trump Crime Family. It’d be nice to know who the journalist is who’s misrepresenting as I suspect some readers will guess wrong.

    Thank you for your ongoing efforts, ranging back to Holy Joe through today.

  17. Condor says:

    Meant for this to be a reply to Marcy’s reply to mine, up thread — but button not working (in Chrome):

    “Please allow me to beg to… differ.”

    Even if all you’d ever done was educate all of us — since Papa Dick days (2003) — about how our government is and was being subverted… you would be a hero.

    But this overnight stuff — it is… heroic.

    No one of any significant import knows who (or where) my family and I are — and we are mobile — in several venues — but ALL of our family home doors are forever open to you — and your family.

    Immigrants on two legs, and the four legged recovering ones, as well.

    Stay safe, and take very good care.


  18. Bay State Librul says:

    Thanks…. Many times over, for your writing skills and honesty.
    A class act. You have brought joy and truth from your “keenly curious and questioning mind.”
    Journalism at its best.

  19. RUKidding says:

    Good luck and stay safe.

    Thanks for your true service to our country. You embody what the word patriotic means.

  20. Trip says:

    The good thing is that the trolls now know the FBI is watching this site. The bad thing is the FBI is watching this site, for the rest of us, but I guess they watch us anyway.

    I’m confused (what else is new, amirite?). You mention that this person is lying, but then state that the text was, in essence, corroborated. So it’s not clear my excessive-heat fogged out brain what the lie is. Was it about the person’s true intentions? It’s weird to share that type of info that is kind of true and then spread disinformation. I might have an inkling about the source, but it would only be speculation, which I’m not gonna share.

    Be safe. Holy shit, life comes at you fast.

    • dc says:

      She indicated in a twitter post that the text correctly predicted what happened, and implied that the person told lies about other subjects.  Marcy can correct me if I am wrong, but thought I would help out to close the loop on this question.

  21. ApacheTrout says:

    This is a stunning development, Marcy. I hope you remain vigilant and that others take your concerns seriously. You’ve been a tremendous and unparalleled journalist ever since your FDL days.

    • Willis Warren says:

      Well, I’m reading a lot of this stuff and Dreyfuss seems to be clear, but there’s a real concern I have about Cohen.  It could be that’s he’s just a Russaphile, he’s emeritus of Russian studies, NYU/Princeton, after all.  But I can’t get past the fact that his analysis is so bad.  He seems to be running the playbook that this all comes from the dossier…

  22. John Casper says:

    Prof. Wheeler, “if it bleeds, it leads.”

    Your safety is the breaking news in the Mueller investigation.

    Hope you’ve priced kevlar. https://www.safeguardarmor.com/bullet-proof-vests/

    I hope your media savvy supporters explain to print, online, tv, and radio producers that you’re tip-of-the-spear for their safety. Appeasement led to WW2.

    Your photo and ongoing coverage of your story above the fold on the front-page of the NYT’s, WSJ, WaPo, Guardian, USA Today, LA Times, Chicago Tribune–the surviving big city dailies–interviews on cable news, Meet the Press–Sunday morning news shows–enhances the safety of the media. Coverage of threats to you sends a message to those who try to intimidate the media. You beat cancer. If the etymology of your handle is what I suspect, it’s newsworthy. Amherst rugby, GM, beer-thirty, rhubarb pies, gardener, wife, elder-care provider, rescue dog provider, Wolverines, Lions, and Patriots fan resonate.

    Anti-Trump Republicans, Charlie Sykes, George Will, … should be leading.

    A photo-op with Rand Paul makes sense to me.

  23. Trip says:

    I just want to add that writing this piece, as well as going through the rigors with the FBI, is incredibly brave.

    I’m a little freaked out, I can only imagine how you feel.

  24. Thomasa says:

    Many of my friends consider me to be a conspiracy theorist. Because of your digging into those conspiracies and turning out to be correct, I can stand and shout “I stand absolved. ” Here comes another one that will give me to shout!

    on another note, perhaps a visit to Amy Goodman would raise your visibility and offer a modicum of safety.

  25. Willis Warren says:

    It’s fine to be a conspiracy theorist, Thomas, just look for evidence that disproves your theory. That’s what Marcy does, and she’s the most honest person writing about all this

    • Trip says:

      One source who worked with Schools said there was no sign he was being pushed out. Another said Schools was not leaving because of a disagreement with DOJ leadership.

      The above is from the article, but I tend to think you are correct that he was pushed. It might not have been directly; simply the tremendously adversarial climate.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        First, it was an article in NPR, not known for rocking any boats.  Second, that would be any institution’s expected official position – nothing to see, move along – especially one with a PR team hired by Sessions.

        Third, the timing is unusual.  Schools is apparently independently wealthy, owing to his grandfather having founded a successful grocery store chain in the South.  He can do what he wants.  He chose the DoJ and has had a successful career for decades.  Apparently, he doesn’t want to work for Jeff Sessions anymore.  In isolation, who would?  But the idea that he is leaving to take a more highly paid job in the private sector, when he doesn’t need the money or the prestige, answers no questions.

        The Mueller investigation is a big deal.  It is one of the few counterweights to the Trump regime.  Schools was a part of it, through helping Rosenstein oversee it.  This has the appearance of isolating Rosenstein.  So the questions are why, why now, and why will his replacement not work on supervising Mueller for Rosenstein.

        • Peterr says:

          In other times, I would say that Weinsheimer will not supervise Mueller because he is the acting ADAG, not the nominee to be the new ADAG. As an acting official, there is great pressure simply to focus on keeping normal stuff running. A new nominee might be named by the time he gets up to speed and in the meantime, his old job (which he still holds) continues to need attention. He’ll pass some of that off to *his* deputy, but he’s got to put in some time on that work as well.

          But it’s not just this position. As the story notes, “Nominees to run the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Civil Rights Division and Environmental and Natural Resources Division have not been confirmed in the Senate.” That’s almost a State Department level of unfilled positions, meaning far too much of the entire level or two of DOJ below Rosenstein is running on acting appointments with various people wearing multiple hats.

          My WAG is that Rosenstein said “you’ve got more than enough to do without supervising Mueller on my behalf. I’ll pick up some of the slack there, and you do what is needed with everything else.”

  26. FishOutofWater00 says:

    So, does this in any way indicate that Brian Ross was set up by the Russians or by Americans aiding and abetting them in their attack on the American elections? Ross’ firing by ABC/Disney has a malodorous stench to it. It seems to me likely that someone set him up to eliminate a journalist that was a strong fighter against corruption.

  27. Jaime Gurrola says:

    You must be tired carrying around those big brass balls. This takes more guts than anyone can know.

    A true patriot putting it all on the line.


  28. Bill Durbin says:

    “It’s time that Republicans start acting like that matters.” What Republicans? From what I have observed most Republicans would sell you down the river in a heart beat.

  29. Donald Loveless says:

    So, this comment :”I’m making this public now because a David Ignatius report Thursday maps out an imminent deal with Russia and Israel that sounds like what was described to me within hours of the election. This deal appears to be the culmination of an effort that those involved in the Russian attack worked to implement within hours after the election.” indicates that they were successful? Sorry if I’m slow on the uptake.

  30. Willis Warren says:

    @earl, I’m not sure I’d mess with Rosenstein at this moment. He seems like he’s ready to start shouting “Trump is a Russian asset!” if anyone messes with him further. At this point, I think they have enough to make the country believe.

  31. Avattoir says:

    Probably not Sessions directly or overtly, but very likely tolerated by him and his entire politicized office, at the very least. These are Rs working over Rs; it’s something like a war among mobs. The stress we detected from Rosenstein in last week’s hearing surely must merely hint at its full extent.

  32. Trip says:

    Tomorrow is Independence Day, and in this year of 2018, we are moving toward having a king/dictator-run government, and taxation with no representation. What a horrible state of affairs.

    • SpaceLifeForm says:

      The US was founded on the idea that the tyranny of UK could be overcome. Yet, the fascists never gave up, and here we are.

      The Final Exam.

      Vote 2018-11-06 if you can.

  33. SteveB says:


    Re Schools departure

    Is your thinking that it is the AG who assigns the roles of Asst Deputy AGs, and if Rosenstein wants/needs an Asst DAG to help oversee Mueller, it is ultimately down to Sessions to say yay or nay?

    Forgive me if this seems obvious to you, but I have only come accross snippets about the Mueller oversight team within the DoJ, most reporting has focussed on the succession to the DAG and the reporting on his team has been scant.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      No, I assume that someone as senior as a DAG hires his own direct reports, giving due consideration to the interests of the civil service bureaucracy.

      When a senior executive’s direct reports leave or change assignment, a usual question is whether the change is routine, the executive is realigning personnel for strategic reasons, or is preparing to go.  If either of the latter two, Schools presumably had no reason to stick around under Sessions.

      My other point is that the AG might have used his formal authority and informal power to assert pressure on Rosenstein and/or Schools outside the formal assignment process.  The WH, using its own resources, would fully have encouraged that.

      With this regime, as was true for Communist China and the Soviet Union, when something is officially denied is a good indicator that it is true.

  34. earlofhuntingdon says:

    As if the Russians were not already a big part of all this, apparently Donald J. will have a one-on-one pre-meeting with Vlad before the start of his official meeting with Vlad.  Either Vlad refuses to wait or Donny can’t wait to tell daddy what a good little boy he’s been.  Instead of the press calling this a “summit,” they should call it a “nadir”.

    It gets tiring saying this over and over again, but that behavior from an American president, let alone a Republican, is Not Normal. It is how a lesser mob boss behaves with a bigger mob boss.  In another Washington, the relevant House and Senate committees and senior politicians in private would be all over the president asking WTF is going on.  How do you impeach an entire political party?

  35. Bob Conyers says:

    NBC reports that Jim Jordan refused to deal with sexual abuse by a team doctor while Jordan was a wrestling coach at Ohio State.


    This is a Jerry Sandusky/Larry Nassar level scandal. Former team doctor Richard Strauss is estimated to have assaulted 1500 or more wrestlers.

    Multiple former wrestlers have said that they told Jordan during his four years at OSU and he did nothing. They use words such as liar when talking about Jordan, who claims complete ignorance about Strauss.

    • Trip says:

      And the evangelicals will wipe it away.

      What a disgusting person he is, and his apologists who, I’m sure, will soon defend him.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      The “I know nussink” Sgt. Schultz defense is not likely to work after the Penn State and Michigan State debacles.  However aggressive and ambitious, an assistant head coach would have more reason to know about this sort of abuse than even a head coach.  He’s closer to the players and the locker room complaints.

      In the gaiety of the nineties, when Jordan was an OSU assistant wrestling coach, it would have been typical to bury this sort of abuse, just as it was done at Penn State and Michigan.  Outing anything would have been perceived as bad for big donors, bad for the legislature, bad for the University, bad for recruitment, and bad for signature athletic teams.  That made denial very easy.

      If the allegations are true, Jordan should be burnt toast.

      • orionATL says:

        it can’t be coincidence that this is the same representative jim jordan who was the republican attack dog mauling rosenstein in the hearing the otherday, can it?

        cave, canes!

  36. greengiant says:

    Thanks, for me personal privacy visa vi the FBI is not a concern. Unlike others I only have public sources and information. The oligarchs and other mal actors have had all my web clicks whenever they wanted to. ( In the day one could watch the EW visitors’ IP addresses in real time so such as VPN and TOR are useful to some)

    I comment again that the deepcapture.com site described being burned by informants, physically attacked, threatened, and privately investigated up the ying yang when they wrote about Felix Sater, his buddies, and Wall Street. They named names in the media who were active players of misinformation. Controlling the narrative was so paramount that a made “journalist” was the leader of the group concerned with the murder of a US investigative writer. Their silence indicates a serious threat or a secret court order similar to the one that veiled Sater’s crimes. Mueller’s FBI and the DOJ came up crickets.

    Some write that the US is safe from FSB or GRU murder. But it is not safe from mob murder and these years there is no difference.

    • Trip says:

      They named names in the media who were active players of misinformation.

      Is there a place to find this?  Who did they name, if you are comfortable saying?

      • greengiant says:

        The current web site deepcapture.com, and archives and less official archives that you can reach from searching. When a Canadian libel suit, ( feed them misinformation and sue if they use it) took down their web site they did not restore everything when they came back on line. Basically any journalist or media in NYC or DC is suspect as can be seen by their lack of interest and support. The “right wing” owns so much media today that I don’t want to speculate what information will reach the public. Case in point would be some of Trump’s border policy statements getting very limited coverage.

  37. troy says:

    It is incredibly brave to point out that our intelligence agencies were actively working to undermine an incoming presidential administration.

    I appreciate your ongoing reporting and willingness to stick your neck out!

    Clearly the “A1” humint source was either abusing their surveillance authority, or leaking classified intelligence on the advisors of an elected offical to undermine their ability to function.

    • bmaz says:

      It is incredibly brave to point out that our intelligence agencies were actively working to undermine an incoming presidential administration.

      Nobody here is “pointing that out”, and that statement is pure bullshit.

    • SpaceLifeForm says:

      Not an entire TLA. But a player from a TLA that was planted inside a media org is the logical explanation.

      There are many in that role.

  38. Erin McJ says:

    I don’t know if this is how you intend this – but your posting this now, when you have been purposefully sitting on it for a very long time, makes me fear that the tide is turning against the investigation. I thank you for assuming risk for your country; I am sorry that its leaders are apparently uninterested in your safety; and I hope that no harm comes to you.

    • Christopher N says:

      It could also be tied to Trump’s veiled threat to those who oppose him. I do not take it as the investigation is going sour. On the contrary, Cohen is starting to intimate he has much to share. The manufactured distractions provide evidence IMHO that the investigation is on track.

      • Erin McJ says:

        <I>It could also be tied to Trump’s veiled threat to those who oppose him. I do not take it as the investigation is going sour. On the contrary, Cohen is starting to intimate he has much to share. The manufactured distractions provide evidence IMHO that the investigation is on track.</I>

        I should clarify – I don’t mean that this post makes me worry that there’s no substance to the Mueller investigation. We know there’s been external pressure against the investigation the whole time – this post makes me worry that Marcy’s confidence that the investigation will be able to surmount those pressures is now flagging, for some reason that she knows and I don’t. And I think this post is evidence (as if I needed more) that there’s a lot about this mess that she knows and I don’t.

        I hope I’m wrong!

  39. Desider says:

    “Sooner or later it all gets real/Walk on…”
    We talk about this stuff in the abstract, but it occasionally reaches out to touch us (or some of us) in real ways.
    I respect you for pushing against the easy narratives, even though there were times I quite disagreed (and others would jump on the bus)

  40. Sam says:

    I’ve been reading your blog for years, and daily for about a year now. I’d put off subscribing for no good reason, but that just ended. (I encourage anyone else this far down in the comments that today is a great day to look up to the “support” button.)

    The personal risks you allude to in this article are especially striking, but it’s clear in following you that the work you do every day comes at great personal cost. Thank you for all the service that you do.

  41. Teddy says:

    Dear Marcy,

    Be well and be careful. We need you.

    Thanks for everything you do. Wee $$ on its way.


  42. orionATL says:

    emptywherl writes:

    “… I’m making this public now because a David Ignatius report Thursday maps out an imminent deal with Russia and Israel that sounds like what was described to me within hours of the election. This deal appears to be the culmination of an effort that those involved in the Russian attack worked to implement within hours after the election… ”


    from this i infer that a good deal of behind-the-scenes work took place before the election with regard to this syria deal. for a time frame, one could guess months, possibly from the time of the republican convention. from what emptywheel has written here, a good deal of time had elapsed since the election before the deal was recently consummated – over 18 months.

    if this kind o ” pre-planning” :)  was done for syria, it could have been done for other matters in which a trump presidency would have been of great help to the russian federation. the matter of the 2014 u. s. sanctions against russia imposed over the ukraine quarrel come readily to mind, the initial two of which are said to have been quite damaging to the russian economy. the obama administration added others.

    the matter of sanctions was an unstated subject of the june9, 2016 meeting. we may see a relaxing of the major sanctions in the coming months without any concommitant “give” by the russiaan government.

  43. DVA says:

    All I have to go on are open sources, but I’ve had time for the last few months. So the surprising thing to me about that text is not its ideas, but the fact that it was sent so quickly after the election.  They were ready to go.

    You did what your conscience required after reflection. No one can ask more or better. Thank you.  Stay safe.

  44. Condor says:

    At some risk of being… tedious, here:

    If the moment presents itself, please go hide where you have no prior connections. You and I share no on grid connections.

    My wife and family will vouch for me, and will hide you and your family — we can hide you. All with wi-fi, in a home (or series of homes) — to which your prior contacts (foes, especially) have… zero visibility.

    Tell bmaz if interested (if we get there). That will be the connect route. But only if that moment arrives — and you sense… real or present danger.

    Hushing up now.

    • SpaceLifeForm says:

      Be careful. You just said ‘stuff’ you probably should not have.

      She is going to be fine, if Comcast would get off their ass.

  45. Pete says:

    I have started and stopped several times to post my support for you and all that you do.  I am better for having found your site a little over a year ago and started following you on Twitter.  Many many others are better off as well.

    On the lighter side, I must ask: when you “…I let law enforcement officers enter my house without a warrant, without me being present.” where in the heck was June Bug?  Those law enforcement people might have been in grave danger ya know ;-)

    Hitting the cookie jar – buy the Bug a treat.


    • SpaceLifeForm says:

      June Bug is an FBI agent. Opened the door for the FBI agents.

      Locked the door too after they left.

  46. Mommybrain says:

    Marcy, cardinal rules go out the window at certain times, like the rules of the confessional. I’m in awe of your bravery. Would I do the same? With the kid still at home, I’m not at all sure I would.

    Sending ducats your way.

  47. seedeevee says:

    It is embarrassing for anyone that enjoyed your writing and recommended it to others to have to read nonsense such as “a person whom I had come to believe had played a significant role in the Russian election attack on the US”.

  48. b says:

    “a person whom I had come to believe had played a significant role in the Russian election attack on the US”
    Interesting. I have not seen any evidence of such an attack. Only assertions without proof of various people with interests to claim such.

    “I’m making this public now because a David Ignatius report Thursday maps out an imminent deal with Russia and Israel that sounds like what was described to me within hours of the election. ”

    What Ignatius stenographed is an unrealistic Israeli wishlist (the demand of no Iranians in Damascus makes this obvious). Israel is not in the situation where it can make such demands. The Syrian government will claim back all of Syria with support of its allies. It is the only entity to decide about Iran’s role in Syria.

    In 2015, when the first Russian fighter jet landed in Hmeymim, the U.S. knew that it had lost in Syria. It would not and will not risk a direct war against another nuclear superpower for regime change in Syria. Any reasonable strategist could foresee that. The Pentagon tried some tricks (and still does) to delay and to install some form of its “Salafist Principality” between Iraq and Syria but to no avail. It has lost the gamble. Trump (like Obama) understood that and acted appropriately.

    I do not understand what rabbit hole Marcy has gone through. I m left to quote someone smarter than me:
    “I believe that what is being done in the context of the Russiagate in the US is the manifestation of deep domestic controversy, because the losers do not have the guts to accept that they have lost the elections.”
    That was Sergej Lavrov in a recent interview. I think he is right.

    • Trip says:

      Sergej Lavrov?

      Now there’s a source of integrity and believably! /s

      The trolling is a 2.o.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          If you right click on “reply” to the comment you want, and open a new tab, the full set of menu buttons almost always appears.  Your comment will find its way to the right place in the nesting scheme.

        • Silence Hand says:

          I knew there something useful had to come out of this b thread.  Thanks for providing it.  I have a great recipe for cheesecake if anyone wants it.

      • Sabrina says:

        Trip- it seems to me as though the trolls are out in slightly greater numbers here than usual, on this post especially.

        I imagine this information is of interest to many and sowing doubt about EWs intentions or information would be beneficial to them. Good sign that she’s on the right track!

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Quite a mouthful.  I did not know that the European swallow nested as far East as Russia.  Hope life under the bridge is warm and dry.

  49. Ben says:

    B is of Moon of Alabama and as such has her own turf to protect as though being right were of any preemptive value.

  50. Steve Keller says:

    Just wanted to say thanks, Ms. Wheeler!! And to commend one of your readers’ taste in music…Neil often says it best!!

    Desider says:
    July 3, 2018 at 1:38 pm
    “Sooner or later it all gets real/Walk on…”
    We talk about this stuff in the abstract, but it occasionally reaches out to touch us (or some of us) in real ways.
    I respect you for pushing against the easy narratives…

  51. JNagarya says:

    Junior’s “I love it!” emails about the June 9, 2016 meeting with Russia to get “dirt” — stolen property — against Clinton prove the following:

    1. Junior was enthusiastic to receive stolen property. RECEIVING stolen property is ILLEGAL.

    2. Junior cautioned that the “dirt” — stolen emails — be released later in the Summer. That shows coordination — conspiracy.

    3. The facts in and overall tone of Junior’s emails show that the coordination — conspiracy — was already ongoing.

    So much for “no evidence”.

  52. JAAG says:

    Possibly OT

    In an Intercept interview Seymour Hersh is claiming Trump is reducing Korea military spending in order to do a huge multi trillion dollar infrastructure plan, post midterms. A sort of Republican New Deal. He may have given Saudis right to bid on contracts if they hire American workers. He gives very few details and tells Scahill this reluctantly in the weekly podcast. Jared and Netanyahu go way back to when Netanyahu used to forego the hotel and stayed in Netanyahu’s bed when visiting New York. Jared was doing a lot of talking to Saudis early on. Saudis just promised to reduce oil prices. I figure Saudis want what Ignatius is putting out there, not just Israel.

  53. Willis Warren says:

    FWIW, CNN is saying that Pruitt told tRUmp to fire Sessions and put him in charge of Justice earlier this spring. You were the only person I know who was saying this, Marcy.

    • TGuerrant says:

      Not trying to undercut Marcy and don’t know how far back you’re thinking, but on Jan. 5, 2018, Andrew Restuccia reported in Politico that Pruitt was telling people he wanted Sessions kicked out so he could be AG. On Mar. 15, the Washington Post reported Kelly had called Pruitt and told him to shut up about it – Trump wanted him to remain at EPA. And yes, CNN today reported Pruitt still wants to be AG.


  54. LowdenF23c says:

    Thank you, Ms. Wheeler, for your tenacious reporting. Vigilance and courage to all.

  55. SteveB says:


    re “Intercept”

    Perhaps less O/T than you imagined.

    See @bmaz twitter RT of wonktte.com piece.

    In life one comes accross many things one hopes is not true but turns out to be the case. Betrayal is one such.

    Continuing to fight the good fight is the requisite response.

  56. errant aesthete says:

    When I was a kid, I needed something near me that glowed in the dark. It made me believe that the light would always find its way in. For the last year and a half, I found that same comfort, reassurance and illumination in reading the thoughtful, rigorous and magnificent utterances of your blog. While I didn’t always understand the philosophy or science of law in its entirety, I trusted you and its interpretation, as well as that of your dedicated followers for their wisdom, knowledge, sensibility, and sanity.

    I am humbled, even awed, by your revelations this day. Thank you for reminding me, reminding all of us, that goodness is here. That it is real. That it can be counted on.

    My hope is that the glow in the dark that you’ve brought into all of our lives, the selflessness you breathe, the fear you’ve faced, the doubts you dispelled, the generosity of spirit you radiate will be enough to keep you safe and with us for a long time to come.

    • Sandor says:

      Same, same, same.  Same, same and same.

      (Sorry, but that’s the best that I can do.)


  57. punaise says:

    s**t’s getting real.

    I don’t quite get what it all means, but … wow.

    Thank you, Marcy, for your tireless, courageous and intrepid work. Stay safe!

  58. Canucklehead says:

    Thank you Marcy. You always ooze integrity and credibility, and this piece further confirms inspiring levels of bravery and dedication. I humbly tip my hat, and gladly contribute.

    Stay strong, stay safe. Stay Marcy!

  59. Tom in AZ says:

    I read Marcy and b at Moon of  Alabama daily. My response over there to another who does the same…

    16 @ Wendy Davis

    I have been reading Marcy Wheeler for over a decade, and b for at least two-three years. I think both are valuable bookmarks for anyone.

    b hasn’t seen the ‘proof’ of her views and fair enough. We will see when the investigations are done. That does not mean they aren’t true. And it certainly does not mean the she isn’t telling the truth about her personal knowledge and the threats to her, and for anyone to bemoan that without being in possession of the facts may want to examine their own assumptions.

    Now, my own opinions and assumptions. My feelings about any accusations about <i>any</i> Russian meddling in American politics (for the record, I am an American, living in America) without acknowledging the USA’s relentless meddling in the politics of almost every nation on earth for the last 70+ years is just blind, bleating by the ignorant. Which Marcy, and b, are most certainly not in my opinion. That doesn’t mean they can’t disagree on the facts as they see them, and I venture to say that both would change their view on something as the facts dictate.

    My own feelings about this entire ‘Russian meddling’ in our elections would be moot if we spent any time at all trying to make the system more secure. <i>Not black box, no paper trail machines. Not automatic purging of voter rolls because people throw political mailings in the trash. Not elimination polling stations in areas where a particular party knows they won’t win. And not counting paper ballots in public, or disposing of the ballots before they can be challenged for a recount.</i> Shut up about ‘voter fraud’ and start prosecuting election fraud.Then, come and talk to me about meddling in America’s elections. It may start with an R in these cases, but it is certainly not Russia. Also, if you want to win an election for president, then campaign in every state. Every time.

    • Trip says:

      I’d be willing to entertain any new relevant facts. I don’t know “b”, but when you come on someone’s blog, who has just described intimate experience, as a NEUTRAL witness with the subject at hand, and you pshaw that person’s opinion outright by quoting Sergey FUCKING Lavrov as the more intelligent or credible speaker on the matter (with no horse in the race), you are a TROLL.

      Factors of prior behavior by the US in either influence, regime change etc, or overall serious issues with voting rights, does not cancel out any conspiracy, or guilt in that conspiracy. You might consider them mitigating as to motive, but pretending that that somehow magically erases what happened (whatever happened) is a nullification of reality. There are several people indicted and those who have taken plea deals for their part in it.


      • orionATL says:

        trip –

        this is a superb rebuttal.

        given the circumstances, the insensitivity you describe in para 1 is remarkable for a visitor to the website. it merits the orion stamp of “ideologue” :)

        the argument that the u. s. having interferred in the affairs other nations justifies an interference in u. s. affairs is bankrupt. while prior u. s. behavior may mitigate outrage, it does not excuse the excuse the interferrence itself.

        put simply, if i rob 5 houses, one of which is yours, and later you rob a house, one of which is mine, either by design (retribution) or coincidence, we are both robbers and both guilty of robbery.

        • Tom in AZ says:

          @Trip and orionATL

          I did not say that meddling in our affairs by the Russians is justified, though given our track record, they might surely feel that way.

          And call Lavrov a troll with a capital T, just define what the Pompeos and the Boltons should be known as, please. I would be interested in your insight of his equivalents in our own government.

          Anyway, I didn’t post to pick a fight. I am worried for Marcy, which ever faction may be coming for her.

          Ran across this, thought it was sort of relevant, if just for the questions it poses.



        • Trip says:

          @Tom in AZ, my comment about trolling was in re to “b”. My other points were speaking more generally to the oft repeated refrains of “The Russians didn’t meddle but if they did, so what?”

          Consortium News will never have any other narrative than “the Russians didn’t do it, it’s all political”.

  60. Tom in AZ says:

    Apparently the to <> stuff didn’t work, but it mostly is understandable  I think.

    And check your PayPal, Marcy. Wish I could make it more…thanks for all yo do.

  61. Rusharuse says:

    Well Marcy, you sure gave that tree one helluva shake. I’ll now be on the lookout for things falling (and splatting). Be safe and cover your head!

  62. Silence Hand says:

    Emerging from lurking in shadows to say…wow. Just, wow. Strange days indeed.

    You did the right thing. Thank you.

  63. Prairie Boy says:

    Trying again, previous post appeared to disappear. Marcy, I have been meaning to donate to your site for a while, but this last post made me get off my lazy butt and do so. Thanks for all you do. The donation is only a small tuition payment for all that you have taught me about white collar crime, national security and, even more importantly, integrity. You are an inspiration in this troubling time.

  64. ThingsComeUndone says:

    I suggest putting signs warning people you are a bee keeper all around your property as added security get a few beehive boxes to make it look real or heck get some bees that should reduce the odds of people breaking in. Next get some sprinklers for the lawn hook them up to motion detectors then the fun begins you can fill the hose lines to the sprinkler with skunk gas $9.48 on Amazon, maybe mix in some some things in the hose that glow under a black light information at second link.
    Why do this because if your house is broken into the motion detector activated sprinkler system should spray the person the police then be alerted that anyone who smells like a skunk should be brought to a black light and if they glow thats 2 kinds of proof they were in your home skunk smell and glowing under a black light..
    Amazon has a pheromone on sale that attracts bee swarms I’m not sure if it works but if you have a few bee hives already on your property putting some in the sprinkler hose should make things interesting.
    Other ideas plant tomatoes around the border of your property skunks love them and are nocturnal.
    Put some Ghost Peppers or Habaneros in the blender with water strain the water put them in the sprinkler system hose.
    Place broken bottles on the windowsill or glue broken glass all along the outside edges of your ground level windowsill use clear glass its harder to see at night coat the glass with Warfin rat poison it is an anticoagulant so if they cut their hands on the glass it will keep bleeding for awhile and the police can look for a person with bleeding hands .
    Dogs easiest most practical home security idea I hope these ideas help stay safe…ok




  65. readerOfTeaLeaves says:

    Reply not working, but this is for JAAG around 6:20 pm, another ‘tea leaf’ for you, not intending to be OT:
    Col Lang at Sic Semper Tyrannis reported some months back that in late 2017, Jared Kushner (whose family used to host Netanyahu in NYC) provided Crown Prince of Saudi [Mohammed bin Salmon, or MBS] with intercepted phone conversations between Saudi royals-business moguls. Very shortly thereafter, perhaps within hours or days, MbS sent out orders, and Saudi business moguls were rounded up (or ‘invited’) to a luxurious hotel in Riyadh (Nov 2017). Assuming that the Internets have not formed a wormhole around those Nov 2017 reports, you can find articles from that time period, written by mystified reporters — in which no one seemed to know why billionaires had been called in the dead of night to a luxurious Riyadh hotel. This was following the apparent ‘capture/hostage taking’ of the Lebanese Prime Minister in Saudi, IIRC. The last report that I read, the PM was exceptionally close-mouthed about whatever had happened to him in SA, so it couldn’t have been good. Meanwhile, around that same time, it seemed as if at least one Saudi billionaire was… ‘shaken down’ for a billion or two as their ‘get out of hotel free’ card. MbS did this all under the guise of cracking down on corruption.

    I have no idea what the events of late 2017 have to do with today’s Ignatius reports, or with the text to EW. It’s hard to know which dots connect, and I don’t read, write, nor understand Arabic.

    I don’t know the Middle East at all; however, the proprietor of SST, Col Lang, is a retired US Army, former DIA, and an Arabist. (He seems to detest Clapper, whatever that means.) The Col has a very wry, often acerbic, style – and his report on Jared Kushner’s enabling of MbS is quite the eyebrow raiser. Interesting implications, particularly given what you and EW now report about Syria.

    Shorter: if billionaires can be taken on off the dead of night and held incommunicado, God knows what is happening in the world today. But Kushner obviously wanted to do MbS a ‘favor’ last Nov on his visit to S.A. This is surely linked in some way to your report, and EWs.

    As for this thread: it’s been remarkable to read so many screen names that I have not seen for far too long. I’m glad that EW let us all know how serious things have become, and it absolutely underscores there is some strange mix of motives among the House GOP. Whether they are complicit in this mess, or simply being duped; either way, their conduct is irresponsible and reckless.


  66. lefty665 says:

    Take care and keep your head up.

    Tks for this post. It provides context for several comments and odds and ends over the last couple of years.

    Best wishes.


  67. SC says:

    After reading this rather upsetting post, I sent a small contribution to the Andrew Janz for Congress campaign. Recent polling suggests that he’s currently about 8 points behind, well in range of Nunes if he has a solid GOTV effort. I like Janz as a candidate quite a bit but I’m not in his district. Frankly, I’d support _anyone_ running against Nunes. One way to deal with a wayward House that is undermining Mueller is to throw out the current House occupants. I’d be delighted to see Janz raise this issue in his campaign.

  68. Leba Miller says:


    May I be the first and certainly not the last to recommend that you be awarded the 2018 Nobel Prize for the Promotion of Peace?

    With much gratitude,


    P.S. I get it.

  69. Rusharuse says:

    Born on the 4th of July.
    Mentioned above Scumbo Jimbo turned a blind eye to a sex predator who was givin his wraslin bhoys a tickle-up. Magine if back in the day he had caught dirty ol’ Rosenstein lurking around the patriot Carter Page? Boom, body slam, stepover toe hold, tapout! Patriots do like to stick up(?) for each other you know.

  70. JAAG says:

    Reply to Tea Leaves

    The intel gift to the young Saudi was so suspect. Especially since Jared could not have had a security clearance at the time. Was he even legally entitled to the info he has used to reorganize the world order?

  71. DougR says:

    Longtime lurker, admirer of your work since before Scooter Libby, and now SUBSCRIBER (albeit at a modest level, hope soon it can be more)…I love how factually scrupulous you have always been regarding the state of play on the various Trump/Russia investigations. You and your website have always been my True North, that I return to for verification whenever I read crazy sh*t elsewhere in the blogosphere. My thanks to you, and my hope that you write a book about all this one of these days. It would be a defining work on the period. Cheers!

  72. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Adding to the “This is Not Normal” list, from Amy Siskind yesterday:

    “Have to ask again why 7 Republican senators are in Moscow today in closed-door meetings with Russian politicians without media access on day Senate Intel Comm finds Russia helped elect Trump! And Trump too plans to meet with Putin one-on-one on July 16. This story should be #1!”


    • harpie says:

      No one from the press was allowed at this meeting of 7 Republican Senators [ @SenJohnKennedy (LA) @SenShelby (AL)  @SteveDaines (MT) @SenJohnHoeven (ND) @SenJohnThune (SD) @JerryMoran (KS) @RepKayGranger (TX)] with “Russian politicians”, including Sergei Lavrov and Sergei Kislyak. There is a labeled photo, here. “Here is [a photo of] @SenShelby chitchatting with Molotov’s grandson, Vyacheslav Nikonov.” 

      Marcy tweets https://twitter.com/emptywheel/status/1014521495715008512 This isn’t a political meeting it’s an energy meeting.
      Coincidently, yesterday, Lavrov also met with: https://twitter.com/AmbKawar/status/1014145321289617408

      Jordan’s FM @AymanHSafadi arrived in Moscow today to hold talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov. Discussions will involve ramifications of Syrian crisis as Jordan stresses importance of ceasefire, mechanisms to protect civilians & support them inside Syria. 

      As  https://twitter.com/morganloewcbs5/status/1014299954225950721 points out:

      The only narrative we get is from Russia state TV. Let’s break this down. We’re learning about our elected officials’ actions on foreign soil from Russia TV

      And, finally, https://twitter.com/NatashaBertrand/status/1014218861296660480

      Trump wants to meet with Putin alone, with no other aides present on either side, in Helsinki this month. That means no note-takers, witnesses, or official record.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        These are Republican Senators! Trump Senators would be a more accurate description.

        Mao must be dancing in his tomb on Tiananmen Square, and Stalin in his.  Trump is a stooge, but he thinks he’s in charge.  That’s why Putin has and will find it so easy to manipulate him and damage American interests.

        If this November’s election is so important, how could Putin and his bots not interfere even more in it than they did in 2016?  They’re on a roll, and rolling over the US.

      • harpie says:

        [via lrozen] Alexey Khlebnikov tweets about the Jordan/Russia meeting about Syria:

        […] / 4. We should not expect any breakthrus btw #Putin & #Trump on south #Syria, rather they will try to strike a deal on Syria’s north, where #SDF & #Kurds the major issue / 5. #Lavrov repeated several times that #Iran’s withdrawal from #Syria & from entire regions alone won’t solve issues there – such demand from the US is unrealistic

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Who thinks Putin will wear a wireless wire and Trump will refuse to do it?  Not to mention that both sides and probably others will try to listen in through various means.  Odds are there will be a recording, but the Americans will not have it.  More kompromat.

        • Rayne says:

          Cellphones, Earl. Trump will probably be his usual pigheaded self and carry an unsecured cellphone into meetings. The question is whether the Kremlin will protect itself by use of masking or blocking technologies, perhaps some as simple as a Faraday cage.

    • harpie says:

      [quote] Let this sink in. Today, Senate Intel found Russia interfered in our election w/ a preference for @realDonaldTrump. Yet, @SenateGOP leaders were in Moscow cozying up w/ Russians and Trump wants a private meeting with Putin. If they can’t confront Russia, shouldn’t they just stay? [end quote]

  73. Watson says:

    MW has been a hero since the time when she helped keep the lights on during the dark days of the Bush2 administration. I hope that readers will support her and make her whole for her financial costs resulting from this trying situation.

    This situation involves US policy in Syria, so permit me a comment: Trump is pro-Russia for corrupt reasons arising from his history in organized crime, particularly money laundering. However, this should not obscure the fact that the US has been backing the greater evil in Syria, i.e., the Islamist extremist opposition dominated under various noms de guerre by al-Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood.

  74. ThingsComeUndone says:

    reply to TheraP Nobody raises hives of African Killer bees if they are found animal control removes them still I like the idea.

  75. it's complicated says:

    After a long time of lurking, I feel compelled to make a few short remarks.

    Not having read your “no heroes” thread yet, so I risk “carrying owls to Athens”. Actual heroes, in my perception, usually furiously reject the designation. They just say that they did what they knew to be necessary, maybe adding that they would have hated themself if they hadn’t.

    Please stay safe!

    • Rayne says:

      First, Mr. FirstTimeVisitor, I’ll thank you to use HTTPS when sharing links or don’t share the link at all. I’ve edited your comment to force HTTPS because Google’s Blogspot hosting is HTTPS default — there should be no attempt by a reader’s browser to do other than use HTTPS.

      Second, I seriously doubt you think it’s 50-50 based on your post. I note your bias in your cherry picking, conveniently ignoring the fact Marcy has been a skeptic about the Steele dossier let alone the wider question of Russian influence (whereas I haven’t been).

      I came away from your site thinking you’re simply harvesting traffic data using a teaser. I hope other readers will approach with shields up if at all.

  76. greengiant says:

    Regarding the provocative DM and Ignatius’s OP-ED. Is that a planted cover story for Trump bowing to Putin or what? Israel and KSA want to back Assad? Really? World Cup diplomacy, Netanyahu and Putin to discuss Iran, Syria. I did not get the memo that MBS is good on Shia dominance. KSA is using US bombs to kill in Yemen. Putin, Assad and Iran have won the war in Eastern Syria so maybe this is just the best short term Israel and KSA can get.

    In the long run I patiently look forward to EW’s take on whether this DM was a Putin plot to ensnare Flynn, Obama or her. When typical US political operatives get magnified by foreign actors when does it become ConFraud USA for the operatives? Granted that having CA sell black mail information is over the top.

  77. SteveB says:

    Why does your critique of this post  (to which you link) criticise EW for NOT giving the Seth Rich conspiracy theory some credence at some early stage, while a separate part of your analysis indicates your own doubts about said conspiracy theory?

    And WTF is the relevance of that conspiracy theory to the matter at hand?

    I confess I found your longer analysis as  mystifyingly obtuse as the sentence you graced us with in the comment you posted here.

    Gadfly -ing is not a penetrable analytical methodology it seems, nor conducive to dialogue, Socratic or otherwise.

    I genuinely tried, but I am more than 50% sure your patty lacks nutritional content.

  78. SteveB says:



    My 9:22 was @ SocraticGadfly
    But got orphaned by cuckoo in nest.

    Wot you said x2. I should have left you to it. Curiosity got the better of me. Sometimes I should take a drink first.

    • Rayne says:

      I should have had a drink first as well. Silly me, cracking that open first when there’s perfectly good cocktail fixings and a lot of ice within reach. The cocktail wouldn’t have been a waste of my time.

  79. Procopius says:

    See, this is the kind of thing that makes me feel I’m being gaslighted (not necessarily by emptywheel). I happen to believe that the decision to support regime change in Syria was a foolish mistake because it supported the jihadis. That was one reason I was so reluctant to vote for Hillary, even though I did in the end. That, and her open alliance with the neoconservatives who were behind the disaster in Iraq. For progressives now to say that Trump’s evident desire to change that policy was against the interests of America is, in my view, just crazy. To say that establishing communications with Russia before being inaugurated is very strange. I do not understand why that is thought to be evidence of treasonous intent.

    • bmaz says:

      “Not necessarily by Emptywheel”. That’s swell “Procopius”, then exactly who are you accusing of “gaslighting” you? And what the hell does your comment have to do with this post? The answer is….nothing.

    • Trip says:

      That’s because you are ignoring very obvious facts. Trump is not, nor has he ever been, a diplomat. Look at our previous allies. Look at his failed business ventures. He is held together by strings of bankruptcies and questionable financing. The meeting at Trump Tower was about collecting dirt. Trump was invested in advancing goals for his own wealth.  The neocons of neocons, Bolton and Prince are on his team. I could add more, but what’s the point? You haven’t paid attention or you are remaining willfully ignorant.

  80. SteveB says:

    @ bmaz & Rayne no apologies from you to me required at all. Your good work in moderating with a wide forebearance is very much appreciated by me at least, and I’m sure by others too. I enables us to glimpse perspectives on our concerns that are uncomfortable disconcerting or downright wrongheaded, and reinforces my regard for thoughtful rigorous analyses you curate.

    Warm thanks from an undisclosed location
    [a sheep stroll from TynTon Farm –
    Birthplace of R. Price,
    Aider Abettor Counsellor and Procurer to the Founders]

  81. klynn says:


    I am sorry that you are facing all of this. Thank you for your courage. Please stay safe. You are a national treasure. I have read your post three times and have been overwhelmed by how long you have been facing all of this.  Thank you’s and donations do not seem enough for all you have put on the line.

  82. MomCat Dillman says:

    Reading this article was my first introduction to EmptyWheel. What a shocker! Taking off my blinders in minutes. Thank you for your steadfastness and objectivity. Stay safe.
    I’m hopeful that Mueller and his crew will equally remain safe. As a voting American who has never missed an election since 1960, I want to know that my vote is safe, secure and counted – to me, that is the essence of the Mueller investigation. No meddling in 2018!

  83. Mike Barbour says:

    Thank you for speaking up! You have helped restore a little bit of my faith in American people. I still have a long way to go but you have helped. This whole situation is revolting to say the least. I am so sick of the whole thing I just want it over with and a President to be elected that gives a crap about something other than his own money! Sick bastard needs to be held accountable and everyone around him involved as well. I will never be so gullible as to believe he not only knew what was going on but was the man behind it all. That man doesn’t let anything happen that he doesn’t know about and no one will ever tell me otherwise! He’s a damn con artist and I’ve seen enough of them to know how they work. He’s successfully conned the U.S. A. by tapping into a general dislike of our ineffectual government officials, senators and representatives. They, also, need removed from office and replaced by people more interested in helping our country than helping themselves. So, yes, you have helped restore a little bit of hope for me and a little faith in there actually being good people left in our country. Thank you!

Comments are closed.