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Maria Butina - The Russian Spy Who Wasn't

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posted on Mar, 26 2019 @ 05:28 PM
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I just wanted to pass on this damning piece written by James Bamford in the New Republic. (I searched for it in ATS but was unable to find this particular article.)

The cost of the Russian hysteria has ruined many lives, but perhaps none more so than Maria Butina, who Bamford argues is a scapegoat in it all. It's a reminder that not only is the credibility of the intelligence agencies, the justice system and media in danger, but that real lives and real human beings were unjustly used as pawns in a xenophobic political charade reminiscent of the worst McCarthyism.



By the summer of 2017, about two years after the investigation began, the U.S. government had yet to find anything with which to charge Butina. Gregg Maisel and his team of prosecutors didn’t give up, however. One idea was to show that Butina was the conduit for illegal cash going from Putin to the Trump campaign, via Torshin and Butina’s ties to the NRA. The NRA had reported spending $30 million to support Trump, almost triple what it donated to Republican candidate Mitt Romney in 2012.


The investigation was dutifully leaked to the press. “FBI Investigating Whether Russian Money Went to NRA to Help Trump,” read a McClatchy headline last January, with Butina mentioned as possibly involved. But the investigation produced no evidence of illicit cash transfers.


The inquiry by the Senate Intelligence Committee and the FBI’s surprise raid on Butina’s apartment also failed to turn up anything incriminating. Years of physical surveillance, which, according to a knowledgeable source, included secretly following her to interviews with me, at a cost of perhaps $1 million or more, also came up empty.


Lacking evidence of espionage, money laundering, passing cash to the Trump campaign, violating Russian sanctions, or any other crime, prosecutors finally turned to Section 951, acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign power. Based on the Espionage Act of 1917, the law was enacted in 1948 during the “Red Scare,” a time when Senator Joseph McCarthy exploited the exaggerated fears of Communist infiltration of government, the film industry, and other parts of society.




On November 23, 2018, Butina went to sleep on a blue mat atop the gray cement bed in her cell, her 81st day in solitary confinement. Hours later, in the middle of the night, she was awakened and marched to a new cell, 2E05, this one with a solid steel door and no food slot, preventing even the slightest communication. No reason was given, but her case had reached a critical point. Prosecutors were hoping to get her to plead guilty rather than go to trial, and had even agreed to drop the major charge against her: acting as an unregistered foreign agent of Russia. Born and raised in Siberia, she is terrified of solitary confinement. Fifteen days later, still in solitary, she signed the agreement, pleading guilty to the lesser charge, one count of conspiracy.


During our interviews before her arrest, Butina told me that she was “a huge fan” of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. “I love the story,” she said. “For some reason it fascinates me. It seems to be simple, but it’s so complicated a story.” Stepping off the plane to begin grad school at the start of the Trump-Russia maelstrom, she, like Alice, began her tumble down the rabbit hole.


newrepublic.com...

We should never forget these injustices. Shame on those who perpetrated this hoax.
edit on 26-3-2019 by Tartuffe because: (no reason given)




posted on Mar, 26 2019 @ 07:02 PM
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I think Maria Butina was an implant trying to infiltrate "Conservative" groups and got exposed 😎

the spy who came in with a cold



posted on Mar, 26 2019 @ 10:00 PM
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While I really think she is guilty of being an agent, I think there is more to the story. I don't think she was actually sanctioned by Putin But I could be wrong. I think totshin took it upon himself to drag her into it. But I heard today that there is another court hearing in a couple of days for her case. I'm hoping that they give her a new identity and just let her go. If they don't want her in this country then send her off to where ever she wishes to go but I don't think she will be safe in Russia now. So. Hopefully they won't send her there. Didn't totshin go back to Russia and disappear or something?



posted on Mar, 27 2019 @ 06:18 AM
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a reply to: Tartuffe

Do you believe a spy would be easily identified by a casual observer?

Of course, the espionage agencies were wrong and you are right, right?



posted on Mar, 27 2019 @ 09:04 AM
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originally posted by: chr0naut
a reply to: Tartuffe

Do you believe a spy would be easily identified by a casual observer?

Of course, the espionage agencies were wrong and you are right, right?


Of course, you didn’t read the article, right?

Were you not led to believe a hoax for the past couple years? Did that not shake your faith in “espionage agencies?
edit on 27-3-2019 by Tartuffe because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 29 2019 @ 04:40 PM
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originally posted by: Tartuffe

originally posted by: chr0naut
a reply to: Tartuffe

Do you believe a spy would be easily identified by a casual observer?

Of course, the espionage agencies were wrong and you are right, right?


Of course, you didn’t read the article, right?

Were you not led to believe a hoax for the past couple years? Did that not shake your faith in “espionage agencies?


Yes, I read the article, it leaves a lot of information out.

Why did Torshin, a Russian Senator, Central Bank of Russia deputy govenor and Federation Council party member, hire her as a 'special assistant'?

What was the Republican, Paul Erickson, doing in Russia in the first place?

Are you aware of the email to Erickson where she outlined her plan to influence the 2016 elections in favor of Trump through her affiliations the NRA?

Were you aware that while she was studying at the American University, she got drunk on two separate occasions and bragged about her Russian government 'handlers', both times her classmates reported about what she had said, to law enforcement.

She was, in intelligence parlance, 'a spotter'.




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