—–ON THE AGENDA—–
PUTIN’S ANNUAL PRESS CONFERENCE
Bloomberg reports, “Russian President Vladimir Putin offered warm words for U.S. leader Donald Trump, dismissing allegations of links between the Kremlin and the White House as ‘some sort of spy-mania,’” during his annual press conference today. If it is “spy mania,” of course it was set off by his agents work on the 2016 American election/coup operation, if we are honest not Kremlin bullshit artists.
TRUMP LEAVES RUSSIA THREAT TOTALLY UNCHECKED
The Washington Post reports exclusively today on all the ways Donald Trump has failed at his oath of office to do his constitutionally mandated duty of protecting the American people from Russian election interference and other national security threats, likely because he has been a tremendous, big league beneficiary of it. For instance, The Washington Post notes, “Trump has never convened a Cabinet-level meeting on Russian interference or what to do about it,” and “Although the issue has been discussed at lower levels at the National Security Council, one former high-ranking Trump administration official said there is an unspoken understanding within the NSC that to raise the matter is to acknowledge its validity, which the president would see as an affront.” Horrible. Of course, “Trump’s aversion to the intelligence, and the dilemma that poses for top spies, has created a confusing dissonance on issues related to Russia. The CIA continues to stand by its conclusions about the election, for example, even as the agency’s director, Mike Pompeo, frequently makes comments that seem to diminish or distort those findings,” The Washington Post notes. This is followed by a romp of all the times Trump shat on NATO, Article Five, or our allies to protect himself and his owners in the Russian mafia state. The Washington Post reports for the first time on the damaged relationship between him and National Security Council Russia and Eurasia Director Fiona Hill. The Washington Post reports, “In one of her first encounters with the president, an Oval Office meeting in preparation for a call with Putin on Syria, Trump appeared to mistake Hill for a member of the clerical staff, handing her a memo he had marked up and instructing her to rewrite it.” Perhaps it was her gender? In any case, “When Hill responded with a perplexed look, Trump became irritated with what he interpreted as insubordination, according to officials who witnessed the exchange. As she walked away in confusion, Trump exploded and motioned for McMaster to intervene. McMaster followed Hill out the door and scolded her,” because obviously that is how you talk to women, obviously. Additionally, “Hill’s standing was further damaged when she was forced to defend members of her staff suspected of disloyalty after details about Trump’s Oval Office meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak”. Of course though all of this is just a sideshow to the key enduring mystery at the core of the coup: “Trump has never explained why he so frequently seems to side with Putin.”
From The Washington Post.
UDAY ON THE HILL FOR OVER NINE HOURS YESTERDAY
Newsweek reports, “Donald Trump Jr., President Donald Trump’s eldest son, spent nine hours answering questions about the Trump campaign’s contacts with Russia on Wednesday.” Newsweek notes it was his second interview before the Senate intelligence committee.
DEPARTURES: REALITY TV STAR OMAROSA
Reuters reports, “Omarosa Manigault Newman, a former reality television star-turned political aide to U.S. President Donald Trump, has resigned from the White House to ‘pursue other opportunities,’” albeit more salacious anecdotes were circulating in the morning hours yesterday via White House correspondents on Twitter. The AP reports, “Better known by just her first name, Manigault Newman was escorted from the White House complex Tuesday night but was allowed to tender her resignation. The U.S. Secret Service, which provides security for the president, tweeted Wednesday that it was not involved in her termination or her escort from the grounds. Some published reports said Secret Service officers had physically removed Manigault Newman from the complex. The agency confirmed that a pass granting her access to the complex had been deactivated.” Reuters notes, “Newman served as assistant to the president and director of communications for the White House’s Office of Public Liaison. A former star of Trump’s TV show ‘The Apprentice,’ Newman worked as the director of African-American outreach on Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign”. Reuters adds, “The New York Times reported in September that chief of staff John Kelly had put her on a ‘no-fly list’ of aides who he did not consider fit to attend serious meetings.”
BALLER DEPUTY AG ROD ROSENSTEIN SAYS NO REASON TO FIRE MUELLER
The Guardian reports, “Deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein defended special counsel Robert Mueller on Wednesday and said he had seen no cause to fire him or received encouragement to do so. He also rejected Donald Trump’s characterization of the special counsel’s investigation as a witch-hunt.”
From The Guardian.
YET FBI AGENT’S TEXTS SOMEHOW DEPUTY AG ROSENSTEIN’S FAULT HOW?
POLITICO reports, “Anti-Trump text messages sent by top FBI staffers roiled a congressional hearing Wednesday, as Republicans lawmakers demanded assurances that the nation’s top law enforcement agency is not driven by political favoritism. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) said the texts, which were turned over to the panel Tuesday night by the Justice Department, revealed ‘extreme bias’ on the part of two officials previously assigned to special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election and any ties to President Donald Trump.” Actually what they reveal is extreme common sense and besides, this is insane and insanely disingenuous. Recall, “Senior FBI agent Peter Strzok and top FBI lawyer Lisa Page called Trump an ‘idiot’ and otherwise favored then-Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the messages. Mueller removed Strzok from the Russia probe ‘immediately’ after learning of the texts in late July, the department said in a letter to lawmakers. Page had already left Mueller’s team”. For starters, blaming someone for a colleague’s pillow talk political texts is a stretch, even by death cult GOP standards, especially since the majority of them were sent months before Rosenstein rose to his current position. Then we have the fact that the Republicans are packing the courts with completely unqualified judges (see today’s “KNOW YOUR ENEMY”), so bias in judicial proceedings is not really their ultimate concern. Pure theater. Business Insider confirms, “The Justice Department invited a group of reporters to its offices on Tuesday night to view private text messages sent during the 2016 campaign by Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, former investigators on the special counsel Robert Mueller’s team,” so indeed so much for concerns about bias.
FUSION GPS ALLEGES GOP LEAKED BANK RECORDS FOR POLITICAL PURPOSES
Reuters reports, “ A firm that commissioned a ‘dossier’ detailing links between then-presidential candidate Donald Trump’s campaign and Russia said in a court filing that Republicans leaked the company’s banking data to the media for partisan political purposes.” Yes, the same Republicans who crowed sanctimoniously about judicial bias yesterday did this. Reuters adds, “Fusion GPS, in a notice to a federal judge in Washington late on Tuesday, said that a subpoena sent by the Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives Intelligence Committee and its chairman, Devin Nunes, to the firm’s bank was ‘part of an ongoing effort to discredit Fusion in retaliation for its role in undertaking research’ into Trump during the election.” DARKNESS AT NUNES!
KASPERSKY LAB BAN SIGNED INTO EFFECT WITH NDAA
Tech Crunch reports, “ the U.S. government ban on Kaspersky Lab software has been signed into law. The ban, wedged into the Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), would preclude all federal computers and connected networks from using antivirus software made by the Russian cybersecurity firm.”
From Tech Crunch.
KASPERSKY LAB COURT DOCUMENT INDICATES FSB COLLABORATION
The Washington Post reports, “Kaspersky Lab, a Russian cybersecurity firm, has long asserted its independence of the Russian government. But a court document posted on the Facebook page of a Russian criminal suspect this year shows what appears to be an unusual degree of closeness to the FSB”. The Washington Post adds, “The suspect, Konstantin Kozlovskiy, was arrested in the summer of 2016 in connection with several cyber heists of Russian banks, and he is in a Moscow jail awaiting trial. From his cell, he posted documents related to his case.” Andrei Soldatov, author of Red Web and The New Nobility, responded early this a.m. on Twitter that he believes Kozlovskiy’s family is posting such things on his behalf, as his Facebook page now garners media attention (this is not the first item TRUMPISTAN WATCH has done on it). According to The Washington Post, the document “shows that in April 2015, an FSB agent inside the office of Kaspersky Lab in Moscow gave a company technician a password for a suspected Russian cyber criminal’s computer. The technician gained access to the computer and obtained decrypted documents for the agent. The agent, A.V. Kutasevich, worked side-by-side with the Kaspersky technician, Ruslan Sabitov, in the ‘information retrieval’ operation, according to the document, dated April 28, 2015.”
From The Washington Post.
CONTRACTOR THAT HIRED RUSSIAN CODERS STRIKES DEAL WITH FEDS
Defense One reports, “Russian developers did some of the coding work for a Defense Department software system and stored that code inside a server in Moscow, according to a non-prosecution agreement released Monday.” According to Defense One, “Those Russian coders only worked on unclassified portions of the Defense Information Systems Agency project, but, in some cases, knew they were helping to develop a highly sensitive system that would attach to Defense Department information networks, according to the agreement between the Justice Department and Netcracker Technology Corp., the subcontractor that hired the Russian coders.” Defense One notes, “The non-prosecution deal ends a criminal investigation against Netcracker that was led by the Justice Department’s national security division”.
From Defense One.
CANADA GREENLIGHTS CONTRACTORS TO SELL WEAPONS TO UKRAINE
The CBC reports, “The Liberal cabinet has given the green light for Canadian defence contractors to sell weapons to Ukraine in a watershed decision which a senior official of that country hopes will influence the Trump administration to follow suit. The embattled eastern European country has been added to Canada’s automatic firearms country control list.” The CBC notes, “The decision was made on Nov. 23, according to a cabinet order posted online,” and “released publicly on Wednesday, as the House of Commons prepared to rise for the Christmas break.”
From the CBC.
NAVALNY LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN PLATFORM
The Moscow Times reports, “Opposition leader and presidential hopeful Alexei Navalny has released his full campaign program, one year after announcing his bid for the Russian presidency.” His platform in essence is to reduce corruption, have better relations with the West and work for better results from Russia’s economy. No wonder the little guy in the Kremlin is scared, he can not make good on one of those things which adhere more closely to the actual will of the Russian people than endless war for forever peace in a world where everyone is as poor or worse off than the Russian people are currently.
From The Moscow Times.
ROGER STONE’S WIKILEAKS SOURCE TAKES FIFTH
Mother Jones reports, “Randy Credico, a comedian and radio host who Trump adviser Roger Stone claims was his intermediary to WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange, has asserted his Fifth Amendment right ahead of an interview with the House Intelligence Committee that was scheduled for Friday”. On Twitter (shortly before he blocked TRUMPISTAN WATCH’s personal account), Credico said, “I wanted to testify”. According to Mother Jones, Credico’s lawyer “said that while Assange, who has been confined to the Ecuadorian Embassy in London since 2012, has called into Credico’s radio show as a guest, Credico wants to protect separate confidential conversations—‘stuff that [Assange] didn’t talk about on the air’—that he had with WikiLeaks’ founder.”
From Mother Jones.
—–KNOW YOUR ENEMY—–
ONE OF TRUMP’S UNQUALIFIED JUDGES WITHDRAWS UNDER SCRUTINY
The AP reports, “One of President Donald Trump’s nominees for federal judge has been withdrawn, the first failed judicial pick for the Republican president. White House officials said Wednesday the nomination of Brett Talley, who has never argued a case in court and was rated ‘unanimously unqualified’ by the American Bar Association, was withdrawn. The selection had faced criticism from Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, the Republican chairman of the Judiciary Committee.” The AP adds, “Another nominee, Jeff Mateer, also was going nowhere, as a person familiar with the process said the administration hasn’t submitted paperwork for the nomination to the Senate and does not intend to. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to describe internal deliberations.”
From the AP.
ROGER STONE IS READY TO CAPITALIZE ON TRUMP’S DIE UNTERGANG
Vanity Fair reports, “One Trump ally is making plans to commercialize Trump’s downfall. Longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone told me he is working on a book titled The Unmaking of the President as part of a multi-book deal with Skyhorse Publishing. (Last fall, Skyhorse published Stone’s campaign account, The Making of the President 2016.) ‘I’ve been writing it as we go along,” he told me.’ Stone said, “It’s painfully obvious Mueller will bring charges,” adding, “The only people who don’t seem to know it are Ty Cobb, [John] Dowd, and the president.” Vanity Fair notes, “Stone made it clear he’s not writing the book because he wants to, he’s just planning ahead.”
From Vanity Fair.
GAG ME STEPHEN COHEN, AMERICA’S KREMLIN SCUM PROFESSOR NOW
The Nation has one of its occasional Russia-denying bullshit pieces by acclaimed Putinist Stephen Cohen out. Hooray! Grab your barf bucket and let loose all your bodily gases for the doozy, “Media Malpractice Is Criminalizing Better Relations with Russia”. Why on earth do we want such a thing as better relations with a country that hacked our election and tipped the scales to a goddamn lunatic? Do tell us, Professor Cohen, tell us what to think! As Cohen is willing to shill the line that there is “no actual evidence for these allegations,” you should take everything he says to contain as much truth as its foundations. Hilariously Professor Kremlin Scum continues, “None of these charges has anything to do with improper collusion with Russia, except for the wrongful insinuations against Flynn.” Nothing except Flynn, you say? “Russiagate,” Cohen laments is “an anti-Trump political project”. Cohen even cites Krem’Glenn Greenwald, another fixture in the Kremlin Scum echo chamber, after he dumps on the press, “the mainstream American media have been largely responsible for inflating, perpetuating, and sustaining the sham Russiagate as the real political crisis it has become, arguably the greatest in modern American presidential and thus institutional political history. The media have done this by increasingly betraying their own professed standards of verified news reporting and balanced coverage, even resorting to tacit forms of censorship by systematically excluding dissenting reporting and opinions.” Yes only Kremlin Scum like Krem’Glenn Greenwald and Professor Stephen Cohen know and speak The Truth. If you are not a fan of the GOP death cult, but still looking for a cult that is just as foolish and serving the same Russian mafia state masters, well, here you go! For you this exists!
From The Nation.
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