Offering a conservative counterbalance to the extreme left-coast liberalism of The Huffington Post
Monday, August 15, 2016
"TO RUSSIA WITH LOVE" SIGNED BY DONALD TRUMP AND PAUL MANAFORT
15 August 16
HOW RUSSIA TOOK OVER THE GOP:
One of the more remarkable aspects of the level of Russian activity in
support of Donald Trump during the primary was how unwilling anyone was
to talk about it openly. It was dismissed as conspiratorial craziness in
so many corners that very few serious journalists seemed willing to
engage in the idea, or to do the basic research required to reveal that
something was very definitely off about the social media surrounding
Trump – something that seemed very much in common with the way Russia
has leveraged social media propaganda in other instances.
comparisons between their activity in favor of Trump and particularly in
the methods used to target critics were clear, and the language barrier
that created the hackneyed form of English used in their posts was easy
to spot. But for some odd reason, this was never really investigated
until after Donald Trump became the presumptive nominee. Odd, that. But
then, as with so many other troublesome aspects of Trump, what was clear
in January didn’t become a story until August. http://vlt.tc/2ieh
The conversation about Paul Manafort’s ties to the dark side of political activity has finally begun. http://vlt.tc/2iee
“On a leafy side street off Independence Square in Kiev is an office
used for years by Donald J. Trump’s campaign chairman, Paul Manafort,
when he consulted for Ukraine’s ruling political party. His furniture
and personal items were still there as recently as May.
“And Mr. Manafort’s presence remains elsewhere here in the capital,
where government investigators examining secret records have found his
name, as well as companies he sought business with, as they try to
untangle a corrupt network they say was used to loot Ukrainian assets
and influence elections during the administration of Mr. Manafort’s main
client, former President Viktor F. Yanukovych.
“Handwritten ledgers show 12.7 million dollars in undisclosed cash
payments designated for Mr. Manafort from Mr. Yanukovych’s pro-Russian
political party from 2007 to 2012, according to Ukraine’s newly formed
National Anti-Corruption Bureau. Investigators assert that the
disbursements were part of an illegal off-the-books system whose
recipients also included election officials.
“In addition, criminal prosecutors are investigating a group of offshore
shell companies that helped members of Mr. Yanukovych’s inner circle
finance their lavish lifestyles, including a palatial presidential
residence with a private zoo, golf course and tennis court. Among the
hundreds of murky transactions these companies engaged in was an $18
million deal to sell Ukrainian cable television assets to a partnership
put together by Mr. Manafort and a Russian oligarch, Oleg Deripaska, a
close ally of President Vladimir V. Putin.
“Mr. Manafort’s involvement with moneyed interests in Russia and Ukraine
had previously come to light. But as American relationships there
become a rising issue in the presidential campaign — from Mr. Trump’s
favorable statements about Mr. Putin and his annexation of Crimea, to the
suspected Russian hacking of Democrats’ emails — an examination of Mr.
Manafort’s activities offers new details of how he mixed politics and
business out of public view and benefited from powerful interests now
under scrutiny by the new government in Kiev.
“Anti-corruption officials there say the payments earmarked for Mr.
Manafort, previously unreported, are a focus of their investigation,
though they have yet to determine if he actually received the cash.
While Mr. Manafort is not a target in the separate inquiry of offshore
activities, prosecutors say he must have realized the implications of
his financial dealings.” Corey Lewandowski eagerly retweeted the link to
the New York Times story, the better to get back in the good graces of his former
The fact that reports like this are only coming now supports those
analysts who claim Vladimir Putin has already won our election. http://vlt.tc/2ie0
“Alarming evidence of how deep the Kremlin’s got its tentacles in
Washington mounts by the day. Large-scale hacking by Russian
cyber-warriors didn’t just hit the Democratic National Committee, it
stole emails from a wide array of top power-players, including the
Supreme Allied Commander Europe, NATO’s military boss.
“Systematic Russian cyber-attacks on the DNC and related political
targets in Washington were detected over a year ago by the National
Security Agency, which monitors foreign cyber shenanigans, but the
highly classified nature of this intelligence made it difficult to alert
Congress about Kremlin espionage. That the Russians stood behind this
operation, using well-known hacking cut-outs, was established early by
NSA. “It was the Kremlin, we had them cold,” explained an NSA official
with direct knowledge of the case: “Moscow didn’t care we knew, they
were unusually brazen.” Because, in a way, it only helps them for some
members of the public to know what they did, and remain aghast that they
were able to do it so easily.