Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
|Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks|
|Russia | The Guardian: EU anti-propaganda unit gets 1m a year to counter Russian fake news|
East Stratcom taskforce will be funded from EU budget for first time after summit highlights threat from cyber-attacks and fake news
|СМИ сообщили о выделении Евросоюзом млн евро на борьбу с «пропагандой» из России|
Евросоюз потратит более одного миллиона евро на борьбу с «дезинформацией и фейковыми новостями» из России. Об этом сообщает британская газета The Guardian со ссылкой на источник.
По данным собеседников газеты, эти средства выделят подразделению ЕС по борьбе с пропагандой — East Stratcom. Деньги уже заложены в бюджете Евросоюза на 2018–2020 годы.
Издание отмечает, что это первый случай, когда подразделение по борьбе с пропагандой, основанное в 2015 году, финансируется напрямую из бюджета Евросоюза. До этого, специалисты, в частности, получали деньги от государств-членов ЕС.
Сообщения о выделении Евросоюзом бюджетных денег на борьбу с «пропагандой» из России появились на фоне заявления председателя Европейского совета Дональда Туска на саммите «Восточного партнерства». Туск тогда сказал, что одни из главных проблем Европы — это «кибератаки, поддельные новости и гибридная война».
Напомним, в 2015 голу Туск поручил главе Европейской службы внешних дел (EEAS) Федерике Могерини создать оперативную группу по стратегическим коммуникациям на Востоке (East StratCom Task Force) для «противодействия российской пропаганде». В нее вошли дипломаты, эксперты по России, журналисты и специалисты по соцсетям.
В конце марта 2017 года Европейская народная партия, имеющая наибольшее представительство в Европейском парламенте, приняла резолюцию «Российская дезинформация подрывает западную демократию». Документ предлагал увеличить финансирование и расширить штат сотрудников East Stratcom Task Force.
Также было предложено создать русскоязычный телеканал в Европе, способный стать альтернативой Russia Today.
|Voice of America: Turkish Official: Trump Has Agreed to Stop Arming Syrian Kurdish Fighters|
U.S. President Donald Trump has told his Turkish counterpart that the U.S. will no longer supply weapons to Kurdish YPG fighters in Syria, according to a Turkish officials summation of the call on Friday between the two world leaders. Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Trump made the comment Friday after speaking by phone with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. According to Cavusoglu, Trump said he had given clear instructions that the YPG not be given arms. Cavusoglu also quoted the U.S. president as saying, This nonsense should have ended a long time ago. A White House statement issued Friday evening said Trump informed Erdogan of pending adjustments to the military support provided to our partners on the ground in Syria. The statement described the change as consistent with our previous policy, and said it reflects the new phase of the battle after the fall of Raqqa, the capital of the Islamic State’s self-described caliphate. The battle of Raqqa is complete and we are progressing into a stabilization phase to ensure that ISIS cannot return,” the White House statement said, using an acronym for the militant group. The statement did not specifically name YPG. Erdogan and Trump also discussed the purchase of military equipment from the United States by Turkey, according to the White House. Turkey has been pushing to persuade the U.S. to abandon support for the YPG as the militia fights the Islamic State group. The U.S. considers the Syrian Kurds its best fighting force on the ground against Islamic State, but has to balance that interest with maintaining good relations with Turkey, a NATO ally. Ankara considers the YPG a terrorist organization linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, in Turkey. The PKK has been fighting Turkey since 1984 in a conflict that has left about 40,000 people dead. Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union consider the PKK to be a terrorist group. Relations between Ankara and Washington also have been strained over issues that include the U.S. refusal to extradite a cleric wanted by Turkey in connection with a failed coup last year. The cleric, Fethullah Gulen, denies involvement. Additionally, Ankara has been critical of U.S. plans to try Turkish-Iranian gold trader Reza Zarrab and Mehmet Hakan Atilla, an executive with Turkish state bank Halkbank, on charges of defying sanctions against Iran. Ankara describes the case as political. The defendants are scheduled to go on trial next month in New York.
|Voice of America: Trump Wants to End Welfare of Clinton Era|
Overhauling welfare was one of the defining goals of Bill Clintons presidency, starting with a campaign promise to end welfare as we know it, continuing with a bitter policy fight and producing change that remains hotly debated 20 years later. Now, President Donald Trump wants to put his stamp on the welfare system, apparently in favor of a more restrictive policy. He says people are taking advantage of the system. Trump, who has been signaling interest in the issue for some time, said this past week that he wants to tackle the issue after the tax overhaul he is seeking by the end of the year. He said changes were desperately needed in our country and that his administration would soon offer plans. Work on new policy begins For now, the president has not offered details. Spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said more specifics were likely early next year. But the groundwork has begun at the White House and Trump has made his interest known to Republican lawmakers. Paul Winfree, director of budget policy and deputy director of Trumps Domestic Policy Council, told a recent gathering at the conservative Heritage Foundation that he and another staffer had been charged with working on a major welfare reform proposal. He said they have drafted an executive order on the topic that would outline administration principles and direct agencies to come up with recommendations. The president really wants to lead on this, Winfree said. He has delivered that message loud and clear to us. Weve opened conversations with leadership in Congress to let them know that that is the direction we are heading. Trump said in October that welfare was becoming a very, very big subject, and people are taking advantage of the system. Clintons campaign promise Clinton ran in 1992 on a promise to change the system but struggled to get consensus on a bill, with Democrats divided and Republicans pushing aggressive changes. Four years later, he signed a law that replaced a federal entitlement with grants to the states, placed a time limit on how long families could get aid and required recipients to go to work eventually. It has drawn criticism from some liberal quarters ever since. During her presidential campaign last year, Democrat Hillary Clinton faced activists who argued that the law fought for by her husband punished poor people. No evidence of fraud Kathryn Edin, a professor at Johns Hopkins University who has been studying welfare since the 1990s, said the laws legacy has been to limit the cash assistance available to the very poor and has never become a springboard to work. She questioned what kinds of changes could be made, arguing that welfare benefits are minimal in many states and there is little evidence of fraud in other anti-poverty programs. Still, Edin said that welfare has never been popular even from its inception. It doesnt sit well with Americans in general. Robert Rector, a senior research fellow at Heritage, said he would like to see more work requirements for a range of anti-poverty programs and stronger marriage incentives, as well as strategies to improve results for social programs and to limit waste. He said while the administration could make some adjustments through executive order, legislation would be required for any major change. This is a good system, he said. We just need to make this system better. Administration officials have suggested they are eyeing anti-poverty programs. Trumps initial 2018 budget proposal, outlined in March, sought to sharply reduce spending for Medicaid, food stamps and student loan subsidies, among other programs. Budget director Mick Mulvaney said this year, If you are on food stamps and you are able-bodied, we need you to go to work.
|здоровье путина – Google News: Президент Судана обсудил с Путиным и Шойгу создание военной базы – Росбалт.RU|
здоровье путина – Google News
|Russia and US Presidential Elections of 2016 – Google News: Turkey ‘very happy’ as US stops arming Kurds in Syria – NBCNews.com|
Russia and US Presidential Elections of 2016 – Google News
|Turkey’s Torrid Love Affair With Michael Flynn – Politico|
|Palmer Report: Michael Flynns deal with Robert Mueller is about to destroy these seven key Trump-Russia players|
Michael Flynn signaled last night that he’s negotiating a deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller in Donald Trump’s Russia scandal. So now what? Flynn is arguably the most crucial cooperating witness that Mueller could ever hope to land, because he’s in position to implicate numerous high ranking people in the Russia scandal. Here are the seven key players who are about to see their lives destroyed.
|“US betrayal of Kurds an attempt to fix troubled relations with Turkey & failed Syria policy RT World News|
Syrian Kurdish militias will feel betrayed and will likely align closer with Damascus, if Donald Trump indeed delivers on his promise to Recep Tayyip Erdogan and “adjusts” US military support for the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces, experts have told RT.
In a phone call with his Turkish counterpart Friday, Trump briefed Erdogan on “pending adjustments for [US] military support provided to our partners on the ground in Syria.” Turkish Foreign Minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu, who was present during the call, said Trump explicitly promised to “not provide weapons to the YPG,” which Ankara considers a terrorist organization affiliated with the Turkish Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
But without support from Washington, Kurds are likely to seek closer ties with Damascus to resolve the Syria crisis and retain the country’s unity, investigative journalist, Rick Sterling told RT.
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Sterling warned that some forces in Washington do not want peace to prevail in Syria. Furthermore, there is a chance that Washington might ally itself with Ankara’s troops in Syria, who are officially on the ground there to monitor the Idlib de-escalation zone, one of four established by Moscow, Ankara, and Tehran earlier this year. Erdogan, however, made little secret of the fact that Turkish forces might challenge the Kurdish stronghold of Afrin in northern Syria.
Washington’s decision to back away from the YPG, which has been the core of the US-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), is nothing less of a “betrayal,” experts told RT.
|trump – Google Search|
Washington Post–13 hours ago
The Trump administration is preparing to stop supplying weapons to ethnic Kurdish fighters in Syria, the White House acknowledged Friday, …
Trump speaks with Erdogan about crisis in Syria
Politico–15 hours ago
|Trump – Google News: Trump tells Turkish president US will stop arming Kurds in Syria – Washington Post|
Trump – Google News
|Lori Andrade Flynn – Google Search|
|Lori Andrade Flynn – Google Search|
USA TODAY–Oct 31, 2017
Michael Flynn is one of the most vulnerable figures in special … (Lori Andrade Flynn, the daughter of a large local Portuguese family, met Flynn …
<a href=”http://Heavy.com” rel=”nofollow”>Heavy.com</a>–Nov 5, 2017
Lori Flynn, Michael’s Wife: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know … Flynn and Andrade met when they both attended Middletown High School in …
Earn The Necklace–Mar 31, 2017
But through it all, his biggest supporter is still his wife, Lori Flynn. … He attended high school there and that’s where he met Lori Andrade.
The Providence Journal–Jul 29, 2017
Michael Flynn after a commissioning ceremony. ….. second lieutenant in Army Military Intelligence, he married Lori Andrade, his girlfriend since …
|Michael Flynn is in eye of Russia investigation. At home, he’s revered.|
For the residents of Middletown, Rhode Island, General Michael Flynn, the former National Security Advisor is still their hometown hero, politics aside. USA TODAY
Michael Flynn, then National Security Adviser to President Trump, attends a press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in the East Room of the White House on Feb 10, 2017.(Photo: Jim Lo Scalzo, European Pressphoto Agency)
MIDDLETOWN, R.I. — They show up unannounced, with cash and checks to drop off at William Flynn’s accounting firm on busy Aquidneck Avenue. “I was shocked and a little embarrassed,” he said. “Some don’t even know my brother, but they…wanted to do something for the family.”
Mike Flynn’s childhood home in Middletown, RI. (Photo: Robert Deutsch, USA TODAY)
The Flynns never occupied any of the ostentatious Newport mansions that overlook the most privileged coastline in Rhode Island. But the sprawling family, which has produced two Army generals, is akin to royalty in nearby Middletown – a working class beach town where by now, most everybody knows the daunting legal peril facing its most decorated son.
‘Out of the spotlight’
In this August 1972 photo provided by the Newport Daily News, Michael Flynn, 13, of Middletown, R.I., right, shakes hands with Middletown Councilman Francis LaPointe, left, as he is presented with a commendation and town title, in Middletown. Flynn was honored for pulling one small girl from the path of rolling car, and directing a friend to save another girl. (Photo: The Newport Daily News, AP)
As soon as he learned of Flynn’s firing, Tom Heaney dashed off a letter to his old friend that contained a simple message: “Come on home.”
‘It’s a black hole right now’
Tom Heaney, left, and Robert ‘Rocky’ Kempenaar, two of Mik Flynn’s friends in Rhode Island, have two major worries — that the entire clan will go broke paying the former National Security advisor’s legal bills and that the Russia scandal will overshadow his storied military career. (Photo: Robert Deutsch, USA TODAY)
But it’s not exactly a vacation.
Meanwhile, in Washington
Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn speaks about American exceptionalism during the 2016 Republican National Convention. (Photo: Robert Hanashiro, USA TODAY)
Some 400 miles away, the retired general features prominently in some of the most troubling revelations so far involving the Trump administration and Russia.
In this Jan. 28, 2017, file photo, President Donald Trump accompanied by, from second from left, Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Vice President Mike Pence, White House press secretary Sean Spicer and National Security Adviser Michael Flynn speaks on the phone with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington. Flynn resigned as President Donald Trump’s national security adviser Monday, Feb. 13, 2017. (Photo: Andrew Harnik, AP)
Flynn’s private business dealings also have drawn investigators’ interest, including $530,000 in earnings from a Dutch firm with ties to the Turkish government, and payment for his 2015 Moscow speech.
‘An island mentality’
In this photo, date unknown, provided by Joe Flynn, Michael Flynn, left, sits with his mother Helen Flynn, right, near a football field, in Middletown, R.I. (Photo: Charlie Flynn, AP)
Kempenaar, Flynn’s old friend, is not a Trump supporter. In fact, he said, Flynn’s support for then-candidate Trump took some locals by surprise. Flynn was a fiery surrogate for Trump on the campaign trail, famously encouraging the audience at the Republican National Convention to chant “Lock her up!” – referencing Democratic challenger Hillary Clinton.
Mueller leaves after briefing members of the Senate Judiciary Committee on the investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election on Capitol Hill on June 21, 2017. Michael Reynolds, European Pressphoto Agency
Mueller departs after a closed-door meeting with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 21, 2017. J. Scott Applewhite, AP
Mueller arrives for a court hearing at the Phillip Burton Federal Building in San Francisco on April 21, 2016. He had been overseeing settlement talks with Volkswagen, the U.S. government and private lawyers for the automaker to buy back some of the nearly 600,000 diesel cars that cheat on emissions tests. Jeff Chiu, AP
James Comey talks with Mueller before he was officially sworn in as FBI director on Sept. 4, 2013. Susan Walsh, AP
Mueller jokes with CIA Director John Brennan during his farewell ceremony at the Department of Justice on Aug. 1, 2013, in Washington. Evan Vucci, AP
President Barack Obama, followed by Mueller, right, and his choice for Mueller’s successor, Comey, left, walks toward the podium in the Rose Garden on June 21, 2013. Pablo Martinez Monsivais, AP
Mueller testifies during a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 19, 2013, where he confirmed that the FBI uses drones for domestic surveillance. Alex Wong, Getty Images
Mueller is sworn in on Capitol Hill on June 13, 2013, prior to testifying before the House Judiciary Committee. J. Scott Applewhite, AP
Mueller and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper listen to statements at a Senate Intelligence Committee open hearing on worldwide threats on Jan. 31, 2012. H. Darr Beiser, USA TODAY
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Mueller and National Counterterrorism Center Director Matthew Olsen testify on Capitol Hill on Sept. 13, 2011, before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on the terror threat to the U.S. Evan Vucci, AP
Clapper speaks with Mueller during the launch of the strategy to combat transnational organized crime at the White House on July 25, 2011. Nicholas Kamm, AFP/Getty Images
Mueller speaks at a conference on domestic terrorism on Oct. 6, 2010. Jacquelyn Martin, AP
Obama speaks with Mueller during a meeting at FBI headquarters in Washington on April 28, 2009. Saul Loeb, AFP/Getty Images
Mueller is welcomed on Capitol Hill on March 25, 2009, by Sen. Arlen Specter, ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, prior to testifying before the committee’s oversight hearing regarding the FBI. J. Scott Applewhite, AP
Mueller and Sen. Patrick Leahy chat ahead of Mueller’s testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee on Sept. 17, 2008, on Capitol Hill. Mandel Ngan, AFP/Getty Images
Mueller testifies on Capitol Hill on Feb. 5, 2008, before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on world threats. Kevin Wolf, AP
Mueller prepares to testify on Capitol Hill on March 27, 2007, before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the FBI. Susan Walsh, AP
Mueller answers questions from the media in Charlotte, N.C., on April 24, 2006. Chuck Burton, AP
CIA Director Porter Goss, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Mueller testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on April 27, 2005. Tim Dillon, USA TODAY
Mueller and Attorney General John Ashcroft exit a press briefing at the Department of Justice on Oct. 29, 2001. Stephen Jaffe, AFP
Mueller is sworn in at the start of his testimony during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill on July 30, 2001. Dennis Cook, AP
President George W. Bush names Mueller the new director of the FBI at a Rose Garden ceremony on July 5, 2001. Mike Theiler, AFP
1 of 22
A look at former FBI director Robert Mueller
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|5 Fast Facts You Need to Know|
FacebookMichael Flynn and his wife, Lori.
According to various media reports, Michael Flynn, who served and resigned as President Donald Trump‘s National Security Advisor after 24 days, is facing federal charges. NBC News reported November 1 that federal investigators have enough evidence to bring charges on Flynn and his son, Michael Flynn Jr. The report hasn’t been verified by officials, but they would come as part of a special investigation by Robert Mueller regarding possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump campaign.
1. They Met in High School & Have Been Married for Over 30 Years
FacebookMichael and Lori Flynn
Flynn and Andrade met when they both attended Middletown High School in Rhode Island. A story in the Providence Journal says that they started seeing each other as sophomores and were officially dating by their senior year. The article said that Lori was “a pretty girl who played intramural and powder puff sports” and Flynn was a football player.
2. They Have 2 Sons Together
Michael and Lori Flynn at an event. Michael Flynn is the author of a book on “radical Islam.” He argues the government has downplayed the nature of the threat to the American people. (Facebook/Lori Flynn)
The Flynns have two grown sons together: Michael Flynn Jr. and Matt Flynn. Michael Flynn Jr. has also been under scrutiny in the Mueller investigation, and served as the chief of staff of the Flynn Intel Group, a company he ran with his father. He’s been very active on Twitter and commented on the reports of a possible indictment November 5.
3. Their Ties to Rhode Island Run Deep
Michael and Lori Flynn.
A recent story in the USA Todaysays that Flynn and Andrade are well known in their Rhode Island community, and a friend of the couple, retired Army Col. Tom Heaney, said they are active in the community and frequently are out and about.
4. Flynn’s Sister Said She Deserves Credit for Being a Strong Military Wife
The Flynns at a sporting event. Michael Flynn has Tweeted his support for the New England Patriots. He also likes the Boston Red Sox. (Facebook/Lori Flynn)
Lori has always been there during Flynn’s decorated military service. Flynn’s sister told The Newport Daily News that Lori deserves a great deal of praise for her patience and willpower.
5. The Flynns Have Tried to Keep a Low Profile Since His Resignation
Michael and Lori Flynn
Flynn announced his resignation from his position February 13 as controversy continued to mount. Reports surfaced about his communications with the Russian ambassador, and he stepped down just 24 days after he was hired.
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|Michael Flynn is probably helping Mueller’s Trump-Russia probe and it could be a big break for the case – World|
Michael Flynn “has a story to tell,” the fired U.S. national security adviser’s lawyer promised back in March, hinting at a trove of insider information relevant to an investigation of links between Russia and Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.
Now it appears that Flynn might already be divulging what he knows, and likely opening a line of communication with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigators. The dead giveaway? Flynn’s team has stopped sharing info with Trump’s attorneys.
The revelation that Flynn’s lawyers severed those communications about the Trump-Russia investigation was first reported by the New York Times on Thursday.
The legal manoeuvre, while not proving they have flipped and decided to co-operate with Mueller’s investigators, “is the clearest indication we’ve seen to date that Flynn is co-operating with prosecutors,” said former federal prosecutor Barak Cohen.
In this June 21 photo, special counsel Robert Mueller, left, departs after a closed-door meeting with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee about Russian meddling in the 2016 election and possible connection to the Trump campaign. (J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press)
If confirmed, legal scholars say collaboration between Flynn and Mueller would be the biggest news in the Trump-Russia probe so far.
George Papadopolous, former foreign policy adviser with the 2016 Trump campaign, is now a co-operating witness in special counsel Mueller’s Russia investigation. (Courtesy Linkedln)
Flipping Flynn could help build a case against Mueller’s likely “primary target” — Trump himself, said Seth Abramson, a legal analyst and prominent Twitter user known for lashing out against Trump.
U.S. President Donald Trump is joined by former chief of staff Reince Priebus, centre, Vice-President Mike Pence, former senior adviser Steve Bannon, former communications director Sean Spicer and former national security adviser Michael Flynn, right, as he speaks by phone with Russian President Vladimir Putin. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)
Signs of co-operation
His attorneys were in discussions with the House and Senate intelligence committees back in March about negotiating an immunity deal in exchange for information that might be relevant to Mueller’s probe into possible Russian collusion.
Seemingly unconcerned by the optics, Trump jokes with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, left, and Russian ambassador to the U.S. Sergei Kislyak in the Oval Office the day after he fired FBI director James Comey, who was leading the Russia investigation. (Russian Foreign Ministry/EPA)
Typically, Cohen said, the parties might continue to engage in joint defence, even while talking with prosecutors representing the government, “until the prosecutors signal that co-operation may be jeopardized if the target of the investigation keeps talking to other targets.”
The ‘motherlode’ of information
“What you want from Flynn is confirmation, whether through documentation or testimony, that it was in fact the deliberate plan for the Trump campaign to communicate they were going to unilaterally drop sanctions on Russia if Trump won the election,” he said.
Then-White House National Security Adviser Michael Flynn walks down the White House colonnade on the way to a news conference at the White House on Feb. 10. (Jim Bourg/Reuters)
Flynn’s possible co-operation could also help to define who in the chaotic early days of the Trump administration called the shots, whether behind the scenes or at the forefront.
|Did Donald Trump just publicly threaten Michael Flynns safety?|
Last night multiple major news outlets confirmed that Michael Flynn is making moves to negotiate a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, in what amounts to the worst case scenario for Donald Trump. Flynn will give up many of Trump’s Russia secrets, taking Trump down in the process. Rather than ranting about it this morning, Trump made a statement which if you put it within the proper context sure sounds like a threat against the safety of Flynn and his son.
|Trump speaks with Erdogan about ‘mess’ in Middle East|
Trump, Turkish leader discuss Syrian crisis in phone call
President Donald Trump spoke Friday with Turkey’s president “about bringing peace to the mess that I inherited in the Middle East” before hitting the links with Tiger Woods and pro golfer Dustin Johnson.
President Donald Trump speaks to members of the U.S. Coast Guard at the Lake Worth Inlet Station, on Thanksgiving, Thursday, Nov. 23, 2017, in Riviera Beach, Fla.(Photo: Alex Brandon, AP)
President Trump discussed the path forward in Syria in a phone call with his Turkish counterpart, including what the Turks described as a plan to stop U.S. from going to Kurdish fighters inside the war-torn country.
|trump investigation, flynn, turkey, kurds – Google Search|
USA TODAY–21 hours ago
Trump and Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan “underscored the need to … Erdogan has long protested U.S. aid to Kurdish fighters in Syria, … is investigating Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn and …
<a href=”http://NBCNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>NBCNews.com</a>–Nov 10, 2017
Sources: Mueller Investigating Possible Flynn, Turkish Govt. … Rudy Giuliani, who was a top Trumpcampaign surrogate alongside Flynn, … with a plan President Barack Obama approved to arm Syrian Kurds in the ISIS fight.
Turkey denies report of a $15 million plot involving Michael Flynn to …
Business Insider–Nov 12, 2017
Turkey denies alleged plot to have Flynn kidnap cleric from US
CTV News–Nov 12, 2017
Turkey Denies ‘Ludicrous’ Reports of Plan to Seize Cleric From US
U.S. News & World Report–Nov 12, 2017
Turkish PM denies working with former US security aide
International–Anadolu Agency–Nov 12, 2017
The Russia Investigation Is Now Also a Turkey Investigation. Good.
Blog–Slate Magazine (blog)–Nov 12, 2017
The New York Review of Books–Nov 20, 2017
Flynn was an integral part of the Trump campaign and briefly served the … Flynn’s work for the Turkishgovernment is also under investigation. …. jihadis, official corruption, the killing of Kurds, and the systematic arrest of …
|Trump tells Turkey’s leader: US to stop arming Syrian Kurds|
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan with U.S President Donald Trump in the Oval Office of the White House, May 16, 2017. (Reuters)
ANKARA, Turkey – The United States will cut off its supply of arms to Kurdish fighters in Syria, President Donald Trump told the Turkish president on Friday, in a move sure to please Turkey but further alienate Syrian Kurds who bore much of the fight against the Islamic State group.
|Donald Trump didn’t know what hit him|
Now that Michael Flynn has begun negotiating a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, one of the more curious questions has become what Donald Trump knew and when he knew it. Flynn is now going to take Trump down, no matter how the two men got to this point. But the details may help shed some light on how Trump can be counted on to respond going forward. As it turns out, Trump didn’t know what hit him.
Here’s how it usually works with these storylines: a major media outlet gets wind of what’s going on and begins putting together a story. Along the way, that media outlet contacts the White House and asks Donald Trump for advance comment on the story. This at least partially tips Trump off about the story that’s about to come out, and he tends to go on a Twitter tirade out of frustration and a desire to distract from the story that’s about to get published. As it turns out, precisely none of that happened this time around.
After the New York Times first broke the story on Thursday evening that Flynn was negotiating a deal, the Washington Post followed up with more detail (link). As it turns out, Flynn’s attorney notified Trump’s attorney about the situation on Wednesday evening. This means that, as Rachel Maddow was reporting live on-air on Wednesday night about the defense fund Trump was setting up for his advisers, and Trump’s attorney followed up with a statement making clear that Flynn would not be included, it was because he had just gotten word from Flynn’s attorney that Flynn was going to flip.
So now we know that, while Donald Trump may or may not have instinctively had some sense of what was inevitably coming, he had no real advance warning that Michael Flynn was going to cut him off on Wednesday night and begin negotiating a deal. If Trump is acting shellshocked and increasingly unsure of himself, it’s because he didn’t know what hit him when the stunning blow landed.
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|Tuomioja – Google Search|
UpNorth–15 hours ago
“Tuomioja can be considered as an operative of Russian intelligence after the … Tuomioja was named as Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2000.
YLE–Nov 17, 2017
ja ulkoasiainvaliokunnan jäsen Erkki Tuomioja (sdp) vaativat Suomea tekemään samanlaisen selvityksen Afganistan-operaatioista kuin Ruotsi, …
Verkkouutiset–Nov 5, 2017
Tuomioja viittaa Facebookissa muun muassa Niinistön ehdotukseen siitä, että Suomessa voitaisiin järjestää kansainvälinen suursotaharjoitus …
Analyysi: Jussi Niinistö koukkasi yllätyssotaharjoituksellaan …
International–YLE–Nov 6, 2017
YLE News–Nov 5, 2017
Social Democrat MP Erkki Tuomioja, who served as Finland’s foreign minister for a cumulative 13 years, has accused Defence Minister Niinistö …
|Finnish Historians: Former Finnish Foreign Minister An Operative of Russian intelligence|
Professor and former ambassador, Alpo Rusi and the former party secretary of The Finnish Centre Party, author Jarmo Korhonen have published a new book titled “The Kremlin’s Footsteps – Finlandization and Background of the Spying Scandal in 2002” (Kremlin jalanjälet – suomettuminen ja vuoden 2002 vakoilukohun tausta (Docendo 2017)). The book is available only in Finnish, but it cover issues of high international relevance.
The name of the book refers to the “footprints” of Kremlin – two subjects investigated more closely are finlandization and the background of the spying scandal in 2002. The strong connections between both issues are closely examined inside the book.
Book author, Alpo Rusi
The spying claims concerning Alpo Rusi were completely false, but the investigation process revealed many gaps in Finnish society and challenges of Finnish “Vergangenheitsbewältigung” [process of historical reconciliation] in general. What happened to Rusi and President Ahtisaari is almost a prototype of Russian-style active measures. While the investigation itself was kafkaesque, the details of contained inside the broader background can be found inside the byzantine politics which was created in the era of finlandization.
RETURN TO ZAVIDOVO
The book begins by explaining the so-called “Zavidovo Leak”, which took place in the autumn of 1972. Finland was about to enter into an Association Agreement with the European Economic Community (similar to the Ukraine-EU agreement Viktor Yanukovych refused to sign), which many Finnish left-wing politicians openly opposed. Some considered the agreement as a “back-door” to NATO, despite the fact that the provisions concentrated strictly on trade issues and Finland had signed a similar, earlier agreement with the Eastern Bloc countries.
Tuomioja was named as Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2000. Rusi shows in his book that like former president Mauno Koivisto, Tuomioja was also reluctant to stand up against Serbian dictator Slobodan Milosevic. When the negotiation process for the Lisbon Treaty took place, Tuomioja’s role in downplaying the security guarantee based on EU membership was significant. “Not a specially meritious stateman’s act”, historian Jukka Tarkka has stated.
Historial connecitons between the KGB and Finnish Political Leadership
FSB, SUPO AND THEIR NETWORKS
The Finnish Security Police, SUPO, was penetrated by the KGB during the Cold War. According to Vasily Mitrokhin’s archives, its chief Arvo Pentti was recruited as an agent by the code name “Mauri” and rewarded by 150 000 Finnish marks.
WHAT HAPPENED TO RENÉ NYBERG?
Paavo Lipponen, the long-serving prime minister who started his political career as Kalevi Sorsa’s secretary and international secretary of the Social Democrats, strongly opposed publication of the so-called Tiitinen’s list and the opening of the archives concerning the STASI’s activities in Finland. In his famous column, he imagined how a guillotine would be constructed in central Helsinki and “hippies” marched to kick the bodies after the heads had been removed. In Lipponen’s vision, Alpo Rusi would sign the doors and graves of the suspects.
WILL ANYTHING CHANGE?
The new book by Rusi and Korhonen includes some very important historical puzzle pieces about recent Finnish history and Eastern intelligence operations here. At the same time, it provides another example of the methods the Kremlin and its operatives are willing to use to achieve their geopolitical goals and discredit those who may threaten their impelialistc goals of securing “spheres of influence”.
When asked about finlandization in 2009, Finnish-Estonian author Sofi Oksanen stated that if it was so normal, why can’t we talk about it openly? She also recommended to start using personal pronouns in such evaluation.
|As he investigates Trump’s aides, special counsel’s record shows surprising flaws|
When he was named special counsel in May, Robert S. Mueller III was hailed as the ideal lawman — deeply experienced, strait-laced and nonpartisan — to investigate whether President Trump’s campaign had helped with Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
The accolades squared with Mueller’s valor as a Marine rifle platoon commander in Vietnam and his integrity as a federal prosecutor, a senior Justice Department official and FBI director from 2001 to 2013, the longest tenure since J. Edgar Hoover. He was praised by former courtroom allies and opponents, and by Democrats and Republicans in Congress.
But at 73, Mueller’s record also shows a man of fallible judgment who can be slow to alter his chosen course. At times, he has intimidated or provoked resentment among subordinates. And his tenacious yet linear approach to evaluating evidence led him to fumble the biggest U.S. terrorism investigation since 9/11.
Now, as he leads a sprawling investigation aimed at the White House, Mueller’s prosecutorial discretion looms over the Trump presidency.
On what terms would Mueller offer immunity from prosecution to investigative targets? How broadly will he interpret his mandate to probe not only the 2016 campaign but also matters that “may arise directly from the investigation”?
Will he target Trump’s sprawling family business and financial empire and the years before the developer ran for the White House?
Robert Swan Mueller III began life on an elite footing.
Raised in affluent suburbs west of Philadelphia, he attended the St. Paul’s School in New Hampshire (classmates included future Secretary of State John F. Kerry), before majoring in politics at Princeton. He joined the Marines after graduation and was awarded Navy and Marine Corps medals in Vietnam, where he was shot in the thigh. He graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1973.
Bored by a stint at a white-shoe San Francisco law firm, the jut-jawed Mueller switched to the U.S. attorney’s office there in 1976. Colleagues say he typically arrived by 6:30 a.m., at times in his Marine-issue green raincoat. He played on the office softball team but was careful not to let down his guard while socializing.
“He’d join us, have one — and it was only one — and then his wife would arrive to pick him up,” recalled a colleague.
Mueller also is remembered for a headline-grabbing case that ended in failure.
Mueller oversaw investigations of Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega, the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, and Gambino crime family boss John Gotti, among other high-profile cases. But his tendency to command, rather than inspire, again came into sharp relief.
“He doesn’t invite disagreement,” said a former prosecutor who served under Mueller. “He’s an order-giver.”
He could be harsh on subordinates — sparking resentment when he referred privately to reassigning career lawyers as “moving the furniture.”
In 1993, at age 50, Mueller decided to try private practice again, joining Hale and Dorr as a partner in Washington, representing corporate clients.
The money was better, but Muller was unfulfilled. After two years, he returned to government service — signing on as a homicide prosecutor in the District of Columbia. It was a time of mayhem in the nation’s capital, made worse by the scourge of crack cocaine.
Mueller began working with a “cold case” squad, comprised of Metropolitan Police detectives and FBI agents, that sought to bring murderers to justice.
The squad sent applications for search warrants and subpoenas for Mueller’s review before seeking a judge’s approval. Unlike some prosecutors, Mueller “wouldn’t automatically give a signature,” recalled one of the investigators.
“He would ask, ‘Have you done your work? Do you have your facts?’ … He knew what he was asking was the way to make sure everything stood up” in court.
Building cases often entailed forging trust with victims, witnesses and suspects. Relating to both the sympathetic and the unsavory did not play to Mueller’s strengths.
“He was a gruff guy, and a lot of times, there wasn’t much warmth or ability to really build a bond or connect with a victim-witness,” said the same investigator. “There’s times when you’ve got to bond with the suspect to get what you need. His personality wasn’t necessarily the best for that.”
Nor was Mueller an easy fit with juries in Washington, especially in the freewheeling local Superior Court, where decorum is typically below what judges demand in U.S. District Court.
“In D.C. Superior Court, it’s a bit like meatball surgery. It’s a bit like a M.A.S.H. unit — it’s the unexpected,” said one of Mueller’s former colleagues. “His strength was not as a M.A.S.H. unit trial lawyer.”
Mueller, a registered Republican, moved back to San Francisco in 1998 after President Clinton appointed him U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California. In July 2001, President George W. Bush nominated him as FBI director, and he won unanimous Senate confirmation. Mueller asked the White House for a delay, however, so he could undergo treatment for prostate cancer.
His first day on the job was Sept. 4, 2001 — a week before hijacked airliners slammed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania in the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history.
At 7 a.m. Sept. 12, Mueller, then-Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft and other officials arrived for an emergency briefing at the FBI’s operations center. The senior agent had been given an hour to prepare while investigators were still combing airline manifests and scouring crash sites.
When Mueller asked a rapid-fire series of questions, the agent replied that accurate information was not yet “established.”
“ ‘I want answers, goddamn it!’ ” Mueller exploded, an official who was present recalled.
Mueller already was coming under siege from critics who questioned why the FBI had not prevented the 9/11 attacks. Fear spread of a “second wave” terrorist strike.
Mueller countered by announcing plans to reshape the FBI. Its first priority would be to prevent another terrorist attack — not conventional law enforcement.
The enormity of the FBI’s challenge emerged within weeks.
A handful of letters, laced with powdered anthrax, killed five people and sickened 17 others. The government closed congressional office buildings, the Supreme Court and postal facilities as the country braced for further biological terrorism.
But Mueller’s FBI struggled for nearly seven years to determine who was responsible — even as he personally managed the case from headquarters.
“The director was always the leader of the anthrax investigation, period,” said Michael Mason, former head of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.
The FBI focused on Steven Hatfill, a virologist at the U.S. Army’s laboratories at Ft. Detrick, Md. In January 2003, Mueller assured Congressional leaders in a closed-door briefing that bloodhounds had traced anthrax from the attacks to Hatfill.
But Hatfill had no experience handling anthrax. Nor did he have access to anthrax stored at Ft. Detrick or elsewhere. Years later, the FBI would reject the bloodhound evidence as unreliable.
After media leaks fingered Hatfill, he sued the FBI and the Justice Department on privacy grounds. In June 2008, the government agreed to pay Hatfill about $5.8 million.
Two months later, on Aug. 6, Mueller summoned senior investigators and prosecutors on the anthrax case to his seventh-floor office. The FBI would hold a news conference that afternoon, and he wanted to recap the case’s stunning denouement.
Bruce E. Ivins, an Army microbiologist at Ft. Detrick who specialized in handling anthrax, had committed suicide after his lawyers informed him he was about to be charged with murder for the letter attacks.
Evidence showed Ivins had created and held custody of a batch of anthrax traced by DNA to each of the killings. Ivins had spent hours alone in specially equipped labs just before each batch of letters was mailed.
Mueller let others hold the news conference. Some aides who met Mueller that day think he was reluctant to publicly address the missteps with Hatfill, the bloodhounds and the long delay in focusing on Ivins.
“I think he was personally embarrassed,” said one. “I would assess him as someone that can’t accept the fact that he screwed up.”
At FBI headquarters, protecting the director from embarrassment was ingrained.
A case in point unfolded in 2011 — just as the Senate was considering President Obama’s request to extend Mueller’s expiring term as FBI director by two years.
The FBI’s Inspection Division, a unit that scrutinizes bureau operations, conducted a three-week examination of the Directorate of Intelligence, a unit that Mueller created to carry out the shift in preventing terrorism.
“They inspected it, and they wrote the inspection report and it said the whole thing’s broken — set it on fire and start from scratch,” said a former official familiar with the report. Another ex-official confirmed the account.
Mueller’s top aides saw peril in following normal procedure — forwarding the report to the Justice Department’s inspector general for possible follow-up action.
“It was, ‘The director will get skewered. We’ve got to protect him, and we can’t issue this,’ ” the former official recalled.
The aides kept the report in-house, the former official said, by tweaking its language.
“Anywhere it said, ‘inspection,’ they changed it to ‘review.’ And said this was a review, not an inspection, and therefore they didn’t have to issue it to … the inspector general.”
Two years later, Mueller — without citing the inspection — informed Congress that he had restructured the Directorate of Intelligence “to maximize organizational collaboration, identify and address emerging threats and more effectively integrate intelligence and operations within the FBI.”
During his final months as FBI director, Mueller was again enlisted to help with a thorny matter in U.S.-Russia relations.
In the summer of 2013, the White House asked Mueller to negotiate the release from Russia of Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who stole volumes of classified material on U.S. surveillance operations at home and abroad. Snowden had fled to Moscow after leaking the data to journalists.
Unlike the Cold War spy cases, the U.S. did not offer a trade. The Obama administration wanted Moscow to return Snowden as part of a diplomatic “reset,” an ultimately unsuccessful effort to improve relations with Russia.
Lisa Monaco, the White House’s Homeland Security advisor, tasked Mueller to talk to Alexander Bortnikov, head of Russia’s internal security and counter-intelligence service, the FSB.
For at least a week, Mueller called Bortnikov’s office, starting at 3 a.m. in Washington. Each time, the FBI director was turned aside without getting Bortnikov on the line.
“Mueller just kept calling over there, like begging to talk to the guy,” said a former official. Instead, Snowden was granted asylum in Russia.
The unsuccessful outreach offered Mueller insight into Russian intelligence, who U.S. officials say helped hack and leak Democratic Party emails last year in an effort to undermine U.S. democracy and to help Trump’s campaign.
Investigators and lawyers who have worked with Mueller say that his legacy as special counsel will depend, ultimately, on his resolve, his integrity and especially his judgment.
“If he believes somebody has committed a crime, he’s going to do whatever he can to hold them accountable,” said a former FBI colleague. “Trump’s name or brand is not going to back down Mueller.”
|Finnish Historians: Former Finnish Foreign Minister An Operative of Russian intelligence – UpNorth|