The question is no longer whether Trump and his campaign have agreed with the Russians before the 2016 elections. The New York Times recently reported that "Donald J. Trump and at least 17 officials and campaign advisers had had contacts with Russian nationals and with WikiLeaks, or their intermediaries ", during the 2016 campaign for the presidency. "These contacts include more than 100 in-person meetings, phone calls, SMS, emails and private messages on Twitter. "
"Mr. Trump and his campaign have repeatedly denied having such contact with the Russians in the 2016 election," the Times reported.They abandoned the latter statement as an afterthought, but In reality, the denials of Trump and his henchmen that they had contact with Russians go to the heart of the case of collusion, which prosecutors call "a sign of guilt", the repeated denial of facts that have been proven After that, why would Trump speak at his very first press conference after he took office on February 16, 2017 and deny that neither he nor any of his associates, with the exception of Michael Flynn had contact with Russians? "He was asked the question several times, in different forms, did he have business relations in Russia, no, did anyone who worked for him have any business with him? contacts with Russian s? "No, no one I know." Can we get an answer yes or no, sir? "Russia is a trick." "These are all fake news." "It's a joke."
Trump told reporters at his first press conference that he had already spoken to Russian President Vladimir Putin twice: once right after the elections and a second time after his inauguration. The journalists did not ask him about what they had talked about. Everyone was wondering if there was any contact between the Trump campaign and the Russians before election day, not after.
But not enough attention has been paid to the number of times Trump and Putin have spoken since the elections. According to the New York Times, Trump and Putin have had at least five in-person meetings and nine phone conversations since Trump won the November 9, 2016 elections. Trump has made extraordinary efforts to keep these conversations secret, including taking had a private meeting with Putin in Hamburg, Germany, at the G-20 summit in 2017. He also had a second meeting with Putin after a dinner at the same summit, during which Trump's interpreter was excluded. . "There is no official record of the US government on what has been said", according to the Times.
It has been widely reported that Trump accepted Putin's denials of Russia's interference in the 2016 elections to the detriment of the views of his own intelligence officials. But we did not know until this week, with the release of former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, "The Threat," that Trump had heard Putin's view of US intelligence agencies on ICBM capacity. North Koreans to become established. At an information session at the White House, Trump told his intelligence chiefs, "I'm not sure. I believe Putin ", according to the interview given by McCabe at" 60 Minutes ".
Why would Trump accept the word of an aggressive opponent over that of his own intelligence agencies? Why would he try so hard to keep a secret about what he and Putin talked about in person and on the phone? I think we have our answer now. This is part of Trump's ongoing collusion with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Collusion did not end with the elections. This is in progress. It's constant. In fact, I do not think we really know how many times Trump talked to Putin. McCabe was asked in an interview this week when Trump learned from Putin about the capabilities of North Korea's missile program. "I do not know," McCabe replied. We neither.
Trump's contacts with the Russians go beyond his conversations with Putin. Do you remember what happened after the dismissal of FBI director James Comey by Trump in May 2017? A day later, he hosted Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the Oval Office and praised him for shooting at Comey. "I just turned the head of F.B.I. He was crazy, a real job, "Trump told the Russians," I had to face great pressure because of Russia. It took off. He then added, apparently speechless: "I'm not under investigation. "
But we did not learn from the White House's transcription of the Oval Office meeting with the Russians. We did not learn either from members of the White House press corps who were present because none of them. No, we learned a few days later leaked Russian media present at the Oval Office.
Trump had already spoken on the phone twice. He now reassured the Russians that he was busy with the man who had announced that he was investigating the Russian collusion with the Trump campaign and that he was not going to be there. was itself not the subject of an FBI investigation.
This would not stay true very long. McCabe's book now indicates that he had opened a criminal investigation and counterintelligence on President Trump shortly after the dismissal of Comey. "I was very concerned that I could put the case of Russia on an absolutely solid ground in an indelible way.If I was quickly removed, reassigned or sent back, the file could not be closed nor disappear in the night without a trace, "said McCabe. "Sixty minutes" of CBS last Sunday.
McCabe was right to fear that the FBI's investigation of Trump would go away or be attacked by the president. The New York Times reported yesterday that Trump has attacked Russia's investigation more than 1,100 times. "The attacks, which amount to nearly 1,200, are part of a strategy to repel investigations. They also opened it to any charges of obstructing justice. They include statements made on Twitter, in official speeches, at gatherings, interviews of journalists and other press events. "
The attack on Robert Mueller's investigation was not enough, however. What Trump did with Putin is not collusion, it's a conspiracy. The fundamental crime of the conspiracy was to steal the 2016 elections. What has happened since then is an ongoing conspiracy to destroy the Mueller Inquiry and to repel the Democrats who are preparing to hold hearings to review Trump and his contacts with Russia. That's why we recently saw reports on the action of social media in Russia against Democrats in the mid-term elections to the House and Senate in 2018. And now we see information according to which same Russians who swallowed themselves in the elections of 2016 and 2018 go after the Democratic candidates who announced for president, Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren among them.
Virtually every meeting Trump has had with American allies has been hostile. He has constantly threatened the NATO alliance and criticized close allies like Germany, France, Canada and Mexico. But everything he's ever said about Russia and Putin has been positive. All. Even after canceling an official meeting with Putin at the last G-20 summit in Argentina last November, he managed to have a private conversation with the Russian leader at a dinner closed to the press, but the House -Blanche had to recognize later.
The collusion between Trump and Russia did not stop after the elections. It is permanent, whenever Trump appears with Putin at a top, every time he holds a private meeting, every time he picks up the phone. Do you think they could prepare for the 2020 elections? I do.