The memos, which surfaced publicly for the first time yesterday are detailed and damning. But are the memos true?
If so, it helps explain Trump’s fondness for Russian President Vladimir Putin. It also explains Putin’s desire to subvert the U.S. election on Trump’s behalf.
But the most damning claim is that Trump and his campaign engaged in a “quid pro quo” with the Russian government that can only be described as treason.
In return for intervention in the election, Trump agreed to “sideline Russian intervention in Ukraine as a campaign issue” and to “raise US/NATO defense commitments in the Baltics and Eastern Europe to deflect attention away from the Ukraine.”
Tens of thousands of dollars changed hands as part of the operation, facilitated by Russian emigres in the United States and Russian diplomats.
It also claims Trump has been gathering and providing detailed intelligence to the Putin government on the activities of Russian oligarchs in the United States, in effect, operating as a Russian agent.
The documents cite a number of sources both in Russian and among Trump’s own associates.
The documents name former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, campaign adviser Carter Page, retired Gen. Michael Flynn and Trump lawyer Michael Cohen as key players in the collaboration, which include paid trips to Moscow.
Trump and his campaign team angrily denied all of the allegations contained in the lengthy document, which has the air of authenticity, but may prove to be unverifiable.
If it is a hoax, it’s an exhaustive effort to discredit the president-elect by someone with detailed knowledge of Trump’s campaign and Kremlin intelligence operatives.
The author, however, is a former British spy trusted by American intelligence who was stationed in Russia in the 1990s but now runs a private intelligence company that does “opposition research” according to CNN.
The collection of memoranda appears to have been written over a period of months starting in 2015 through Oct. 2016.
According to a summary of the documents, the author says Russia has been “cultivating, supporting and assisting” Trump for at least the past five years.
Trump was allegedly offered sweetheart real estate deals in Russia, in conjunction with Russia’s hosting of the 2018 World Cup soccer tournament. But Trump reportedly turned them down.
“However, he and his inner circle have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals,” it states.
If the author was out to hype Trump’s involvement with the Russians, claiming he was involved in deals would be a far more damning. To acknowledge that Trump spurned the offers lends credence to the information.
The Russian intelligence agency, known as the FSB, has been collecting information on Trump’s activities in Russia, including engaging in perverted sex acts that were arranged and observed by the FSB. The goal was to collect information that could be used to blackmail Trump.
The Russians saw their opportunity when Trump traveled to Russia in 2013 and stayed in the presidential suite of the Moscow Ritz Carlton Hotel. The hotel is known to be thoroughly bugged by the FSB, the documents note.
In fact, Trump was in Russia that year to host the Miss Universe pageant in the Russian capital. The Obamas traveled to Moscow in July 2009.
After learning that President Obama and his wife had stayed in the same room, Trump reportedly hired prostitutes to come to the room and engage in “golden showers” on the bed where the Obama’s slept.
In a separate instance, the documents detail another trip by Trump to St. Petersburg. While there, he allegedly paid bribes to locals and engaged in sex with prostitutes, who were later paid off for their silence.
A reputed former top level Russian intelligence officer told the ex-British agent that Russian authorities had gathered enough embarrassing material on Trump to blackmail him if they chose to do so.
The Kremlin was reportedly well aware of Trump’s obsessions and taste for sexual perversions. The business mogul’s vulgar and misogynistic treatment of women was documented during the campaign.
At least a dozen women, including contestants from the Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants, said Trump either fondled them, made unwanted sexual advances or barged in on them while they were in various states of undress.
Trump was also caught in a 2005 “hot mic” conversation, bragging about using his celebrity status to hit on women, including “grabbing them by the pussy.” He also bragged about trying to “fu*k” a woman, even though he was married at the time to his third wife and incoming first lady Melania Trump.
The FSB also monitored and bugged Democratic rival Hillary Clinton on her visits to Russia as Secretary of State. But they effort failed to turn up any embarrassing conduct.
Putin, according to the report, directly supervised the activities. The Russian president is a former officer in the KGB, the old Soviet Union’s intelligence agency.
Money & Power reported exclusively on Jan. 2 that Putin was setting up Trump to act as the “cat’s paw” in a push to extend Russian control over the Ukraine, the Baltic States and Eastern Europe.
The documents confirm the story. It says Putin’s desire is to restore Russia’s 19th century grandeur as a major economic and military power with influence over Western Europe.
Money & Power reported that Putin’s strategic goals are nothing less than the goals of 19th century Imperial Russian Tsars. They strove to make Russia an economic power, secure its national borders and expand its influence across Western Europe.
A separate memorandum details Russia’s state-sponsored “cyber crimes” activity, including hacking emails from both Democratic and Republican figures.
The effort included coercion and blackmail to force independent hackers to work for the FSB targeting Western banks, corporations and influential business executives. Russian “elites” were also targets.
The memo notes that Russia was also a victim of hacks, including one that stole millions of Rubles from a state bank.
A third memo details Russia’s effort to influence the U.S. election and includes details about the Trump campaign’s collaboration with Russian agents.
The author said he uncovered evidence of an “extensive conspiracy between the Trump campaign team and Kremlin, sanctioned at the highest levels and involving Russian diplomatic staff in the U.S.,” it states.
Obama expelled 35 Russian diplomats from the United States and closed two major facilities in retaliation for hacking Democratic National Committee emails and the emails of Clinton campaign manager John Podesta. Trump derided the move and lauded Putin for not retaliating.
What’s damning about third memo are claims that Trump and his associates spied on Russian oligarchs in the United States and funneled information to the FSB.
It also makes clear that Trump’s campaign actively collaborated with the Russian campaign hacking effort. Putin, it said, was motivated by fear and hatred of Clinton.
An individual described as an “ethnic Russian” and close associate of Trump reportedly worked directly with Trump’s disgraced campaign manager Paul Manafort. Manafort was using campaign adviser Carter Page and others as intermediaries.
Last August, The New York Times reported that Manafort was paid more than $12 million by Putin puppet Viktor F. Yanukovych, the former pro-Russian Ukrainian president who was ousted in a coup. The move prompted Russia to seize the Crimea and plunge Ukraine into a civil war.
The document notes that Russia leaked the emails to Wikileaks, which published them on the Internet, to maintain “plausible deniability.”
The DNC email leaks were also aimed at switching Bernie Sanders supporters away from Clinton and toward Trump. In fact a major misinformation campaign focused on claims Clinton “stole” the Democratic primary from Sanders, which later proved to be false.
Yet another memo details Page’s activities in Russia with internal affairs officials regarding the lifting of U.S. sanctions against Russia in exchange for cooperation on oil exploration in Russia. Money & Power reported on that angle earlier this month.
The documents detail a Oct. 2016 secret meeting between Trump lawyer Cohen and Kremlin representatives in Prague, Czech Republic. Reportedly pro-Putin Duma member Konstantin Kosachev, head of the Foreign Relations Committee, was in on the meeting.
Part of the discussion involved cleaning up the mess caused by Manafort’s “corrupt relationship” with the ousted Ukrainian president, which led to Manafort’s departure from the Trump campaign.
Putin was aware of Yanukovych’s payments to Manafort, described in a memo as “kick-backs”
Concern that fallout from the DNC e-mail hacking was “spiraling out of control” was raised by both the Trump team and Russia.
Assurances were reportedly given that Russia would not release compromising information on Trump “given high levels of voluntary cooperation forthcoming from his team.”
The documents also contain information about dissension among Russian officials over fallout from the hacking.
In a news conference today, Trump category denied all of the allegations contained in the memos.
Outgoing Sen. Harry Reid spokesman Adam Jentleson tweeted Tuesday that the former Senate Democratic leader had seen the documents before writing a public letter to FBI Director James Comey about Trump’s ties to Russia, according to Buzzfeed.
CNN reported Tuesday that Arizona Sen. John McCain gave a “full copy” of the memos to FBI Director James Comey on Dec. 9. The FBI already had copies of many of the memos, the news site reported.
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