On January 15, I published in LA Progressive excerpts from the infamous 35-page "dossier" compiled between March and December 2016 by former British spy Christopher Steele for Republican (and later Democratic) strategists in the 2016 Presidential campaign.
My article, "Trumputin's Russian Strategy—Treason?", analyzed one section of the report, sent in late July 2016 sentence by sentence. I determined that much of this report regarding the embarrassing emails by the Democratic National Committee leaked to WikiLeaks was done by Putin's Russian operatives, and was "conducted with the full knowledge and support of TRUMP and senior members of his campaign team", to quote the dossier.
Trumputin's Long-Time Information Exchange with the Kremlin
A month into the "Trumputin" (as I call him) Presidency, it might be interesting to take another look at the 35-page Steele dossier and see if other things in that document have been shown likely to be true. The July 30, 2016 dossier report stated that a source:
"...close to the TRUMP campaign confirms regular exchange with Kremlin has existed for at least 8 years, including intelligence feedback to Russia on oligarchs' activities in the US…TRUMP and his associates duly had obtained and supplied the Kremlin with this information."
In my earlier article, I quoted Donald Trump, Jr. as saying in 2008 (eight years before this dossier report) that:
"Russians made up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets; say in Dubai, and certainly with our project in SoHo and anywhere in New York. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia."
So it is not out of the realm of possibility that Trumputin's Russian connections remained strong after 2008.
Can Trumputin Be Blackmailed by Putin?
The source went on to tell Steele that:
"As far as 'kompromat' (compromising information) on TRUMP were concerned, although there was plenty of this, he understood the Kremlin had given its word that it would not be deployed against the Republican presidential candidate given how helpful and co-operative his team had been over several years, and particularly of late."
So, if this is true, our President can be blackmailed by Putin whenever he does something that Putin does not like.
Why the Leaks to WikiLeaks?
On August 10, 2016, Steele stated that an ethnic Russian associate of Trumputin:
"reported that the aim of leaking the DNC e-mails to WikiLeaks during the Democratic Convention had been to swing supporters of Bernie SANDERS away from Hillary CLINTON and across to TRUMP…The objective had been conceived and promoted, inter alia, by TRUMP's foreign policy adviser Carter PAGE, who had discussed it directly with the ethnic Russian associate."
Page was removed from the campaign by Trumputin shortly thereafter, and the WikiLeaked DNC e-mails led to the resignation of Debbie Wasserman Schultz as DNC chair shortly before the convention.
Why Did Putin Support Trumputin?
On October 12, 2016, within weeks of the November 8 U.S. election, Steele reported this:
"Asked to explain why PUTIN and the Kremlin had launched such an aggressive TRUMP support operation in the first place, the [Russian Foreign Ministry] official said that Russia needed to upset the liberal international status quo, including on Ukraine-related sanctions, which was seriously disadvantaging the country. TRUMP was viewed as divisive in disrupting the whole US political system; anti-Establishment; and a pragmatist with whom they could do business."
Steele got this right; the status quo has been totally upset by Trumputin's victory, and he has been highly divisive since he took office a month ago. Watch to see if and when he relaxes the Russian sanctions, as he has talked about doing. If this happens, you will know that Trumputin is a traitor.
Trumputin's Lawyer: His Russian Go-between?
This week the New York Times reported that Trumputin's personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, may have been an important link with Russia. Cohen has worked for the Trump Organization for 10 years, lives in the Trump Park Avenue building, and has done legal work "on a Trump-branded tower in the republic of Georgia, and a short-lived martial arts venture starring a Russian fighter. He is considered a loyal lieutenant whom Mr. Trump trusts to fix difficult problems", according to the Times.
Steele's dossier reported that:
"in mid-October 2016, a Kremlin insider with direct access to the leadership confirmed that a key role in the secret TRUMP campaign/Kremlin relationship was being played by the Republican candidate's personal lawyer Michael COHEN."
The remainder of this paragraph was redacted, but the dossier summary reports this:
"COHEN's wife is of Russian descent and her father is a leading property developer in Moscow."
The plot thickens…
The Cover Up Begins?
The October 19, 2016 Steele report goes on to state that :
"According to the Kremlin insider, COHEN [in mid-October, 2016] now was heavily engaged in a cover up and damage limitation operation in the attempt to prevent the full details of TRUMP's relationship with Russia being exposed…The immediate issues had been to contain further scandals involving MANNAFORT's (sic) commercial and political role in Russia/Ukraine and to limit the damage arising from exposure of former TRUMP foreign policy advisor, Carter PAGE's secret meetings with Russian leadership figures in Moscow the previous month. The overall objective has been 'to sweep it all under the carpet and make sure no connections could be fully established or proven'."
So there was already a "cover up" underway? Sound familiar?
How to Cover Up Payments to Hackers
The final dossier report, on December 13, 2016, after Trumputin was elected, stated that:
"COHEN had been accompanied to Prague by 3 colleagues and the timing of the visit was either in the last week of August or the first week of September…the agenda comprised questions on how deniable cash payments were to be made to hackers who had worked in Europe under Kremlin direction against the CLINTON campaign and various contingencies for covering up these operations and Moscow's secret liaison with the TRUMP team more generally."
According to the dossier, Cohen and his colleagues discussed with the Russians:
"…what was to be done in the event that Hillary CLINTON won the presidency. It was important in this event that all cash payments owed were made quickly and discreetly and that cyber and other operators were stood down/able to go effectively to ground to cover their traces...the operatives involved had been paid by both TRUMP's team and the Kremlin…"
Cohen has denied he has ever been in Prague or had these meetings, but if he did, he better lawyer up soon, as he is certain to spend time in the slammer. Ask Nixon White House Counsel John Dean (whom I know) what happens when you try to cover up Presidential misdeeds.
If the above is proven to be true, Trumputin will be impeached for "high crimes and misdemeanors" and might even go to jail or be executed for treason, and his campaign operatives who put this plan in place or covered it up afterwards will go to jail, as happened after Watergate. And Members of Congress who participated in the cover up, or do so in the future, including possibly former Senator and now Attorney General Jeff Sessions, could also end up in the slammer.