Russiagate (2016- ) is the scandal where US President Donald Trump and his top people are suspected of secret ties to the Russian government.
As of March 2nd 2017 there is no proof, just curious facts that point to something strange going on. It is like living in a spy novel:
- Trump only says nice things about Russian President Vladimir Putin.
- Trump publicly asked Russia to hack Hillary Clinton, his Democratic opponent in the 2016 US election.
- Trump will not make his tax returns public.
- Jeff Sessions, Trump’s Attorney General, lied under oath about not talking to the Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak.
- Michael Flynn, Trump’s first National Security Adviser, lied about talking to the Russian ambassador. Trump kept Flynn on for weeks even after he knew Russia could be blackmailing him.
- Rex Tillerson, Trump’s Secretary of State, was awarded the Order of Friendship by Russia. As head of ExxonMobil, Tillerson made a $500 billion oil deal with Putin that was blocked by US sanctions against Russia.
- Wilbur Ross, Trump’s Secretary of Commerce, was a partner in the Bank of Cyprus, which launders money from Russia.
- Dmitry Rybolovlev, also a partner in the Bank of Cyprus, bought a mansion from Donald Trump in 2008 for $95 million. In 2016 he flew back and forth between Moscow and US cities where Trump was campaigning.
- Oleg Erovinkin was found dead in the back seat of his car. He was suspected of helping Christopher Steele, the former British spy who put together the Trump dossier (which lays out the Russian ties).
- Five Russian diplomats have died in the four months since the US election, one of them gunned down in public at an art gallery in Turkey.
- Russian trolls have been supporting Trump since 2015.
Oh, and then there is the hacking of emails of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and John Podesta, the head of the Clinton campaign. Some of those emails were made public through WikiLeaks, well-timed to hurt Clinton and protect Trump.
The CIA says Russian intelligence is behind the hack. So does CrowdStrike, which handled the DNC’s computer security. CrowdStrike made its findings public.
Net worth in billions (according to Google in 2017):
- 200: Vladimir Putin
- 7.3: Dmitry Rybolovlev
- 3.7: Donald Trump
- 2.5: Wilbur Ross
- 0.150: Rex Tillerson
- 0.008: Jeff Sessions
- 0.008: Michael Flynn
The Trump dossier remains the best guide to understanding all of this despite the surprise twists and turns.
Investigations: Those by Congress are headed by Republicans and so far have done nothing. The FBI, though, seems to be moving forward. British intelligence is presumably looking into it.
Deep state: Some see Russiagate as an attempt to remove Trump by the deep state, made up of the CIA, Wall Street, etc, using the White Liberal press to spread fake news. But if that were true, Trump would want to get to the bottom of it. Instead he tries to play it down – as if he is hiding something.
The only good way out of this mess is an investigation that is both open and independent.
– Abagond, 2017.
- Trump dossier
- conspiracy theory
- fake news
- deep state
- Russian trolls
- Guide to Trump
- The Death of Outrage – my guide to scandal
- White Liberals
- How to remove a US president
- Jill Stein