Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Flynn Lied To Pence, Pence Repeated Flynn’s Lie, Flynn Quit, Trump Loves Flynn

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, February 16, 2017

Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, Director, Defense Intelligence Agency; official portrait

Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, Director, Defense Intelligence Agency, USA

Vice President Mike Pence, official portrait

Vice President Mike Pence, USA

Here’s how Trump rewards those who look out for our Nation’s Security.

REMEMBER:
Before Michael Flynn resigned as National Security Advisor…

Before the Inauguration, when Flynn was asked about his calls and texts with the Russian Ambassador Sergey I. Kislyak, he lied to Vice President-elect Mike Pence.

A former administration official said the Justice Department warned the White House in January that Flynn had not been fully forthright about his conversations with the Russian ambassador, and because of that, the Justice Department feared that he could be vulnerable to Russian blackmail.

CIA Director John Brennan, and Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr., agreed with Acting Assistant Attorney General Sally Q. Yates that:

Sergey Ivanovich Kislyak, Russian Ambassador to the United States since 2008.

Sergey Ivanovich Kislyak, Russian Ambassador to the United States

Official portrait, John O. Brennan, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, March 8, 2013 – January 20, 2017.

John O. Brennan, Director, Central Intelligence Agency, USA 3/8/13 – 1/20/17

1.) “Flynn had put himself in a compromising position”;
2.) Could be vulnerable to Russian blackmail;
3.) That he had been deliberately misleading about his interactions with Russia’s ambassador;
4.) That VP-elect Pence had a right to know that he had been misled, and;
5.) Recommended that POTUS Trump be warned.

Trump then fired Yates.

Flynn publicly stated that when he was Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, he traveled to Moscow in 2013, and there met Kislyak, who continued to communicate with Flynn during, and after the Presidential campaign.

When it became known that Russia meddled in the U.S. General Election to elect Trump, then-POTUS Obama sanctioned Russia by expelling 35 Russians and their families who posed as diplomats, were suspected of being spies, and closed two luxurious waterfront American properties – one in Upper Brookville, NY, and another on Maryland’s Eastern Shore – where they resided, which were used for Russian intelligence-gathering activities.

Donald Trump, United States President, official portrait

President Donald Trump, USA

Sally Caroline Quillian Yates, Attorney General, Acting, US

Sally Caroline Quillian Yates, Attorney General, Acting, USA

The U.S. braced for retaliation, but there was none. Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is a former KGB chief, announced December 30 that Russia would not respond. Trump praised the decision on Twitter.

U.S. officials found Putin’s response curious, and began to investigate. They found Kislyak’s communications, which the FBI routinely monitors, and a phone call in question with Flynn. Based on that call, and others, FBI agents wrote a secret report summarizing Flynn’s discussions with Kislyak.

Recall that Flynn is a retired three-star Army General, with many years of intelligence experience.

James R. Clapper, Director of National Intelligence

James R. Clapper, Director of National Intelligence, USA

Yates, who was then the Deputy Attorney General, thought that Flynn’s comments in the monitored call were “highly significant” and “potentially illegal,” and along with other intelligence officials suspected that Flynn could have violated the Logan Act, which forbids U.S. citizens from interfering in other nations’ diplomatic disputes, which has also never been used to prosecute anyone.

Russian President Vladimir Putin shoots a handgun on the firing range at a new headquarters of the Main Intelligence Agency (GRU) of the Russian Armed Forces General Staff on November 8, 2006.

Vladimir Putin, Russian president firing a handgun on the firing range at the new headquarters of the Main Intelligence Agency (GRU) of the Russian Armed Forces General Staff in Moscow, Russia, November 8, 2006.

The FBI was also investigating possible contacts between Trump’s associates and Russia, which included the Flynn-Kislyak communications.

In a January 12th OpEd entitled “What did Flynn say, and did it undercut U.S. sanctions?,” Washington Post columnist David Ignatius cited the Logan Act, which was a hinted leak of the ongoing investigations.

David Ignatius, Washington Post

David Ignatius, Washington Post

The next day, a Trump transition official told The Washington Post, “I can tell you that during his call, sanctions were not discussed whatsoever.”

Sean Spicer, as incoming White House Press Secretary, conducted a conference call with reporters January 13, and said that the conversation between Flynn and Kislyak “centered on the logistics” of a post-inauguration call between Trump and Putin, and added “That was it, plain and simple.”

January 15, VP-elect Pence was asked about the phone call during his appearance on the CBS news program “Face the Nation,” and cited a conversation he had with Flynn, and said the incoming National Security Adviser (FLYNN) and Kislyak “did not discuss anything having to do with the United States’ decision to expel diplomats or impose censure against Russia.

Sean Spicer, Trump White House Press Secretary

Sean Spicer, Trump White House Press Secretary

James Brien "Jim" Comey, Jr., Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation

James Brien “Jim” Comey, Jr., Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation

Before VP-elect Pence’s statement January 15, top Justice Department and Intelligence Officials discussed whether the incoming Trump White House should be notified about the contents of the Flynn-Kislyak communications.

Pence’s public statement on CBS made the matter even more urgent because U.S. intelligence agencies had reason to believe that Russia was aware that Flynn and Kislyak had discussed sanctions in their December call, contrary to public statements made by Flynn and repeated by Pence.

The internal debate over how to handle the intelligence on Flynn and Kislyak came to a head on January 19, which was Obama’s last full day in office.

Yates, Clapper and Brennan wanted to brief the incoming administration so the new president could decide how to deal with the matter. They discussed options, including telling Pence, the incoming White House counsel, the incoming chief of staff or Trump himself.

FBI Director James B. Comey initially opposed notification, claiming that it could complicate their investigation.

Donald F. McGahn, now White House Counsel, formerly Federal Election Commission Chairman, emerges from Trump Tower in New York City

Donald F. McGahn II, now White House Counsel, formerly Federal Election Commission Chairman, emerges from Trump Tower in New York City

Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to POTUS Trump, Inauguration Day 2017

Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to POTUS Trump, Inauguration Day 2017

Clapper and Brennan left their positions when Trump was sworn in, but Yates stayed on as Acting Attorney General until January 30, when Trump fired her for refusing to defend his Executive Order temporarily barring refugees and people from seven majority-Muslim countries – an action that was challenged in court, which he has lost. Officials have a responsibility to disobey unlawful orders, and in her capacity as Acting Attorney General, the top law enforcement officer in the United States, her official responsibility was to enforce & uphold the laws. The POTUS does not write law, and Executive Orders are not law. She has some capacity to advise the President on legal matters, but not of the legality of his actions, which is up to the courts to decide.

In Sean Spicer’s first official White House press briefing on January 23 he was asked about Flynn’s communications with Kislyak, and said that he had talked to Flynn about the issue “again last night,” adding there was just “one call,” which covered only four subjects: 1.) A plane crash that claimed the lives of a Russian military choir; 2.) Christmas greetings; 3.) Russian-led talks over the Syrian civil war, and; 4.) The logistics of setting up a call between Putin and Trump.

Yates again raised the issue with Comey, who changed his mind from opposing informing Trump. Yates then spoke to White House Counsel, Donald McGahn. It’s not clear what McGahn did with the information.

Since the news broke, Trump has declined to publicly back Flynn as National Security Adviser.

Monday afternoon, Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to POTUS Trump, said he had “full confidence” in Flynn. Only minutes later, Spicer delivered a contradictory statement to reporters.

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