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Why Flynn’s plea is yet another dead end for breathless ‘Russiagate’ hysteria

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+46 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 06:08 PM
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Although liberal MSM and their followers would like to believe the Flynn plea is a bomb-shell, I must shoot this claim down. I'll explain why.

While reading an article on RT, several statements I made about Flynn resonated as particularly important.

1) Flynn's charges (like the others charged) has nothing to do with Russia and everything to do with lying or otherwise obstructing federal investigators.

2) The totality of Flynn's admissions do not constitute crimes in the United States, save for some obscure law circa 1700's that prevent private Citizens from engaging in diplomacy. However, it is a procedural offense that has never been prosecuted (and only indicted twice) that is perfectly defensible seeing as Flynn was the (then) incoming National Security Adviser - something that would require frequent contacts with non-hostile foreign powers.

3) Had Flynn decided to simply keep his mouth shut (under the 5th amendment) or just told the truth, there would be no criminal charges to bring since nothing he was accused of is a violation of federal law. Again, minus the obscure and twice-only-indicted procedural violations of the Logan Act. This has nothing to do with Russia though, and everything to do with private Citizens engaging in diplomacy. If you recall, Jimmy Carter visited North Korea for the purpose of engaging in diplomacy after he was out of office. This is also a violation of the Logan Act, along with hundreds or thousands of other instances depending on how you define "diplomacy"

Therefore, the reason he lied/obstructed is irrelevant, and the charges are based solely on the act of lying or obstructing. To wit, he could have admitted every last accusation against him (full on "collusion" and election-influencing) and no criminal charges *could possibly* be successfully brought against him - since none exist for these actions. Additionally, pleading the 5th would've also saved him. Attempting to talk yourself out of trouble is exactly what federal investigators want, giving them ammunition when they'd otherwise have none. Either tell the truth or say nothing, lying is senseless.

To be clear, he could've lied about talking to a "Russian" or about drinking Pepsi over Coca Cola. Lying to a federal agent is the totality of the offense. For Manafort, failing to register as a foreign agent/obstruction/lying to federal agents is the totality of the offense. None of these charges stem from allegedly cooperating with Russia to influence the 2016 election (which again isn't a crime, nor is it any worse than the Virginia Gov race type ads we recently saw).

In any case, I will present the article which reinforces and explains several of the key points I made earlier.


President Donald Trump’s short-lived national security adviser, Michael Flynn, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. Most US media jumped on the plea as proof of Trump’s collusion with Russia. Actual documents, however, tell a different story.

A court document signed by special counsel Robert Mueller, dated Thursday, specifies two instances of Flynn telling FBI investigators things that were not true. They relate to two conversations he had with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, in December 2016.

In the Statement of Offense signed by Flynn at his court appearance on Friday, he admitted to acting on instructions from a senior “Presidential Transition Team” (PTT) official, prompting breathless speculation if that was Trump himself, his son-in-law Jared Kushner, or someone else altogether. The one question nobody seems to be asking is, “So what?"


From the statement Flynn gave, he was speaking with Russian officials over sanctions the Obama Admin placed against them. Such discussions are not alleged to involve any unlawful discussion of bribery in exchange for easing the sanctions - and are both normal and 100% legal for a President-elect or his team to engage in. Diplomacy and meeting with foreign government representatives is all part of the job. Although such actions may technically violate the procedural Logan Act, it is well known that private Citizens frequently engage in acts of diplomacy through advocacy groups and other types of International outreach. How many private foundations (including George Soros') are guilty of violating the procedural Logan Act of the 1700's? Thousands. The fact they're scraping the bottom of the charges bucket means they have nothing of value.

As I said from the very beginning, the totality of the anti-Trump/Russian hysteria is one giant vindictive liberal nothing-burger.



It is intuitively obvious to even the most casual observer that Flynn’s “crime” is a procedural one: he told FBI investigators he hadn’t done a thing that he actually did. But was the thing he did - namely, speak with the Russian ambassador to the US - against the law? Not really.

Under the 1799 Logan Act, it is technically against the law for a private US citizen to engage in diplomacy. However, only two people have ever been indicted under that law, and no one has ever been prosecuted. Flynn was a member of the presidential transition team whose duties involved contacts with foreign diplomats. So why would the FBI even ask him about his contacts with Ambassador Kislyak?

“There was nothing wrong with the incoming national security adviser’s having meetings with foreign counterparts or discussing such matters as the sanctions in those meetings,” Andrew McCarthy of National Review wrote on Friday.

Because Flynn was “generally despised by Obama administration officials,” McCarthy added, “there has always been cynical suspicion that the decision to interview him was driven by the expectation that he would provide the FBI with an account inconsistent with the recorded conversation - i.e., that Flynn was being set up for prosecution on a process crime.”


"Flynn was a member of the presidential transition team whose duties involved contacts with foreign diplomats."

source: RTnews
edit on 12/1/2017 by JBurns because: (no reason given)



+9 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 06:19 PM
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a reply to: JBurns Why don't we just let the investigation handle all that. I wonder how all the Trump die hard fan's will spin it when Trump himself gets called up. They are hitting pretty close to home. Kushner will be called in so this will be interesting.



+8 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 06:30 PM
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Then there's this...
ntknetwork.com...

Leon Panetta, President Obama’s former Secretary of Defense, told NBC’s Chuck Todd on Friday that it was a “stretch” to say the Trump transition team broke the law with their contacts with the Russians.

“We have one administration at a time,” Panetta said, warning that the Trump transition team undermined long-standing political norms in the United States by engaging in diplomacy while the Obama administration was still in office.

However, the former defense secretary doubted that dealings with the Russians rose to the level of criminal violations.

“[Their contact with Russia] was very unusual. Whether it breaks the law or not, I think that’s probably a stretch,” Panetta predicted.


That's a lifelong Democrat leader essentially telling everyone that this Flynn testimony is little more than fluff and doubting that there is any law broken in what Flynn is claiming happened. The most extreme thing that will likely come out of this is that Congress will likely codify foreign contact laws during White House transition periods, making it actually illegal for future president elects to initiate contact with foreign offices prior to being sworn in. Recall, President Elect Trump contacted most of the major global leaders in the months following the election, so this Flynn "news bomb" is really nothing. He's overdramatizing something for Mueller in exchange for admitting he lacks the financial resources to continue an endless defense. This is what Mueller was hoping for, to some point, although I suspect he was hoping Flynn would offer to lie under oath to implicate something actually, you know, illegal.


+13 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 06:41 PM
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Fishing expedition, plain and simple.


+4 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 06:53 PM
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TIC TOC am i right.


+26 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 06:57 PM
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Never let the facts get in the way of a gold ole fashioned liberal witchhunt...

Democrats ironically ignore actual treason while obsessing about nonsense...

It’s actually really funny when I think how trump is dismantling Obama’s Legacy all while the liberals are hoping for an impeachment that will never come...

Heck, they are about to legislate the first congressional tax cut in 31 years...

All while democrats are slapping each other’s backs over the Flynn plea....which means nothing

-Chris


+1 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 06:58 PM
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originally posted by: LesMisanthrope
Fishing expedition, plain and simple.


Yes it is....it's been a year long fishing expedition in the Dead Sea.
Nothing has ever been caught and nothing ever will be.


+10 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:03 PM
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Why did Flynn lie, I wonder.

Did Trump know he lied, I wonder.

edit on 12/1/2017 by Phage because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:06 PM
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originally posted by: Christosterone
Never let the facts get in the way of a gold ole fashioned liberal witchhunt...

Well, I may actually agree with you..

Because if there's one thing the right wing knows, it's how to witch hunt.


+1 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:08 PM
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a reply to: RazorV66

Seems to be having more success than the mob trying to get charges brought against old Hillary though....



+14 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:13 PM
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a reply to: JBurns

Did you completely miss that he was given the plea bargain because he's got information and has agreed to give testimony? It's not because they couldn't have indicted him on several other charges, not least of which the unregistered lobbying for Turkey.

Put another way, he flipped. He's going to give testimony that will incriminate somebody else in some way.

The smart money isn't on that testimony having anything to do with collusion to sway the election. The way this is shaping up, Flynn appears to have been following orders and took one for the lying team who eventually left him hanging out to dry.

It's looking likely that while Flynn was lying to the FBI, essentially the entire administration was lying to everyone. That would include Trump himself. If that's true, not only does it once more expose this gaggle of liars for the dishonest clowns that they are, it casts Trump's interactions with Comey on Feb 14 (the day after the Flynn "resignation") in a whole different self-interested light.

In other words, he was attempting to quash an investigation that he knew could prove malfeasance on his part, if for nothing else, lying about the whole affair. The worst case scenario is if there really was collusion involving Trump, this could represent the play for which the meddling was the pay.

I don't see Mueller making a plea deal with Flynn unless there was more to come. That wouldn't make sense. So, tick tock?

EDIT:

And another thing that should be considered is that other members of the transition team/administration have also been interviewed by the FBI. Did any of those people lie to the FBI as well? If so and it can be proven, those people can be charged with a crime. If the President did it and it can be proven, that case can be handed off to Congress to deal with. Forget about collusion with Russia and forget about the firing of Comey, lying to the FBI may very well be grounds for impeachment.

Let's really speculate here. What if both Trump AND Pence lied to the FBI? Because that's the sort of thing that Flynn may very well be able to testify to and while I'm sure Flynn had every intention of being loyal to Trump, the guy's a general with 35 years or something of service. I wouldn't put it past him to have a legitimate come to Jesus moment here and unburden his soul for the good of the nation.

Could Trump and Pence BOTH be impeached?
edit on 2017-12-1 by theantediluvian because: (no reason given)


+6 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:20 PM
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a reply to: theantediluvian

Leon Panetta does not share your interpretation of this, not did Wall Street once the initial panic sellers had finished overreating to the news.



posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:26 PM
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The only thing that is certain from his plea deal is that someone else is in hot water now that he is rolling over on them.

We don't know who it is or what will come of it. Everything else is just guessing. I plan to wait and see.



posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:29 PM
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lol. This has sure been an interesting year.

What do you think guys. Will this take Trump down, or turn into another, "we have his taxes predicament. Either way, I have enjoyed every moment of this Presidency, and for that I will say Thank you Mr. President.



posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:32 PM
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originally posted by: burdman30ott6
a reply to: theantediluvian

Leon Panetta does not share your interpretation of this, not did Wall Street once the initial panic sellers had finished overreating to the news.


Super.

Leon Panetta is clearly talking about whether the communications were illegal/actionable or not and I primarily was not. I personally don't believe Trump directly colluded with the Russians, I never have and I've never said I did. So I don't expect him to go down for collusion obviously. Nor have I argued that the communications with Russia by Flynn were even serious enough on their own to merit Flynn resigning.

He didn't resign because the calls were criminal. He resigned ostensibly because he got busted lying and he'd lied to VP Pence. People only cared about the calls in the first place because of this concern over collusion. If they'd been up front from the beginning, Flynn would probably still have a job. But they weren't. They lied repeatedly. Trump put pressure on Comey the day after the resignation to quash any investigation into Flynn. An investigation which could have possibly exposed the lying by him personally as well as others.

There's really no telling what Flynn might actually say. Hell, Flynn could testify that there was talk of putting pressure on Comey.

As for Wall Street, great. If Wall Street were truly some prescient hive mind, stock markets would never falter much less crash.



posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:33 PM
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a reply to: burdman30ott6

So, your interpretation is simply, 'a single charge against Flynn means nothing.' You don't believe there's more to it? You don't believe that Flynn accepted a plea deal to, not only accept the single charge (which puts him in prison for 5 years), but to save his son as well?

Flynn likely could have faced some very, very serious charges with some very, very serious prison time. He specifically stopped communicating with Trump's lawyers about the investigation days ago.

Furthermore, Flynn pleading guilty paints a very bad picture for the president. Comey understood the president's one-on-one meeting to mean that he wanted the FBI to stop looking into Flynn, when Comey said he couldn't do that the president fired him for 'mishandling' the Clinton investigation. If there's even a shred of evidence that Trump fired Comey to stop him from getting to the (now) guilty Flynn then that's obstruction of justice and that's a step closer to impeachment.



posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:36 PM
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originally posted by: theantediluvian
a reply to: JBurns
Did any of those people lie to the FBI as well? If so and it can be proven, those people can be charged with a crime. If the President did it and it can be proven, that case can be handed off to Congress to deal with. Forget about collusion with Russia and forget about the firing of Comey, lying to the FBI may very well be grounds for impeachment.

Let's really speculate here. What if both Trump AND Pence lied to the FBI? Because that's the sort of thing that Flynn may very well be able to testify to and while I'm sure Flynn had every intention of being loyal to Trump, the guy's a general with 35 years or something of service. I wouldn't put it past him to have a legitimate come to Jesus moment here and unburden his soul for the good of the nation.

Could Trump and Pence BOTH be impeached?

If...they better have hard proof.

He said/he said will be a colossal waste.

Somebody is blowing smoke...probably hoping for a spark. A fire is unlikely.


+3 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:38 PM
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a reply to: six67seven

Congress doesn't need "hard proof", actually.


+4 more 
posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:40 PM
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originally posted by: Phage
a reply to: six67seven

Congress doesn't need "hard proof", actually.



Right. Congress has no legal standards to meet at all. Impeachment is not a criminal preceding, it's a political process.



posted on Dec, 1 2017 @ 07:42 PM
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originally posted by: Chadwickus
a reply to: RazorV66

Seems to be having more success than the mob trying to get charges brought against old Hillary though....



Only because no one wants to get Arkancided, so no one wants to appoint an annointed...er, um...special prosecutor to look into the Clinton Cartel..




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