The Mueller Memos: RUSSIA, IF YOU'RE LISTENING! WE SHOULD BLAME UKRAINE FOR THIS!
Holy document dump, everyone! As we write this, the House Intelligence Committee has just released transcripts of testimonies from former ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and former Mike Pompeo adviser Michael McKinley. This post isn't about that document dump, because we are still working our way through the tranche of Mueller investigation memos BuzzFeed released this weekend, the first of MANY such releases we are expecting.
Much of it is redacted, aggravatingly. But there is still some very interesting stuff to learn!
One section of the documents, from FBI interviews with Manafort lackey Rick Gates, is about who on the Trump campaign knew what, when, where, how and why about WikiLeaks's releases of the emails Russia hacked and stole from the Democrats and the Clinton campaign. Surprise, they seemed to know a lot! And boy, if it's what you say, they sure did love it, especially later in the summer!
For one thing, Gates told the FBI that the Republican National Committee seemed to know more about the timing of the releases than they should've, based on publicly available information. The RNC says no they never, and who you gonna believe, Rick Gates the criminal, or the very honest and pure RNC? (Rick Gates, that is who we believe.)
Gates also had some info about the enthusiasm shared by the whole campaign, including the big man himself, about getting "the emails" (there is currently an argument in the Wonkette chatcave about whether these are Hillary's imaginary deleted crime emails or the emails Russia hacked from the DNC, or hell maybe the FBI is conflating the two separate sets of emails like everyone and their moms did), and about how everybody on the Trump campaign was pretty sure Russia was innocent of all crimes past, present and future allllll the way back in the summer of 2016: (p. 13)
Gates recalled a time on the campaign aircraft when candidate Trump said, "get the emails." [Michael] Flynn said he could use his intelligence sources to obtain the emails. Flynn was adamant the Russians did not carry out the hack. To support this theory Flynn advised, based on his experience, the United States Intelligence Community (USIC) was not capable of figuring it out.
Uh huh. And Michael Flynn, incompetent conspiracy-hole jackass President Obama had to fire because he was an incompetent conspiracy-hole jackass, knew better. We bet.
Gates said Flynn had the most Russia contacts of anyone on the campaign and was in the best position to ask for the emails if they were out there.
Of course, Flynn wasn't the only one who wanted to absolve Russia of all crimes. So did Paul Manafort, who was already working the conspiracy theory that Ukraine did it. (p. 14)
Gates advised Trump Jr. and Manafort also had contacts with, "Russia types." Gates clarified by saying Manafort's connection with Russians was minimal aside from his relationship with Oleg Deripaska. Gates said Manafort primarily had contacts with Ukrainians. Gates recalled Manafort saying the hack was likely carried out by the Ukrainians, not the Russians, which parroted a narrative [Manafort's Russian spy buddy partner Konstantin] Kilimnik often supported. Kilimnik also opined the hack could have been perpetrated by Russian operatives in Ukraine.
Golly, sounds like using and abusing Ukraine for Trump's and Russia's own purposes has been all the rage for YEARS now. And the conspiracy theory came straight from the Kremlin, laundered by Manafort's spy buddy Kilimnik, who has been assessed to have ties to Russian intelligence, and who is as we speak safely evading the US criminal justice system in Russia.
Regardless of whether it was Russia or Russia who did the hacking (it was Russia), like we said, everybody on the Trump campaign was just thrilled. They were building messaging strategies behind it, and Trump was very GRRR when sweet delicious emails didn't get WikiLeaked fast enough. Gates said they were "very happy" because it was something else to focus on, and "offered a mode of deflection for the campaign after a sink in polling numbers following Trump's comments about Ted Cruz's father at the end of the Republican National Convention."
Manafort had told Gates he was supposed to "periodically call" [REDACTED BUT PROBABLY ROGER STONE] to "check in on where the information was and when it would be coming" from WikiLeaks, and that [REDACTED] and Manafort were working together to coordinate the WikiLeaks messaging strategy.
Oh yes, and who can forget that time Donald Trump and Rick Gates were riding in the Camry together (it was not a Camry) on the way to the airport, and Trump talked to [REDACTED BUT DEFINITELY ALMOST CERTAINLY ROGER STONE], after which Trump very confidently reported that more WikiLeaks were on their way. (p. 42)
Trump knew. He knew he knew he knew he knew he knew he knew he knew he knew he knew he knew.
By the way, Gates said that when Trump famously looked at the camera and said, "Russia if you're listening" and demanded they find Hillary's imaginary missing emails, it was an "ad lib," but oh well, it worked anyway, because Russian military intelligence started trying to hack Hillary that very night.
As a postscript to this post, we feel we should note that we have been vindicated in our predictions yet again SEVERAL TIMES in these documents, and one example is that our speculation was correct about how long Paul Manafort was really advising the Trump campaign, even though he had been "fired" in August. Here's an email Manafort sent Jared Kushner three days before the election on "securing the victory" and how good he felt about their chances. (p. 238)
Kushner forwarded it to David Bossie and Steve Bannon, who had a very interesting reply:
BANNON: We need to avoid this guy like the plague
They are going to try and say the Russians worked with wiki leaks to give this victory to us
Paul is nice buy but can't let word get out he is advising us
Yeah, we wonder why THEY might try to say that, considering how it's a well-established fact that WikiLeaks was a cut-out operation of Russian intelligence.
In our next post, we will look at another thing we have been VINDICATED on, which involves Ivanka and a Russian oligarch, sittin' in a tree, in Croatia, in August 2016, and also Jared was there, and also Rupert Murdoch's ex-wife Wendi Deng, who is maybe a Chinese spy, K-I-S-S-I-N-G!
We KNEW it.
Follow Evan Hurst on Twitter RIGHT HERE, DO IT RIGHT HERE!
Wonkette is fully funded by readers like YOU. If you love Wonkette, SUPPORT WONKETTE FINANCIALLY.