Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

Mueller Refuses to Answer On Steele Dossier

by Oui Tue Jul 30th, 2019 at 09:10:34 PM EST

Hot summer doldrums ... bear with me. :-)

Too busy wth personal matters, left this in concept for too many days!

I have not touched the dossier for awhile, however the refusal of Robert Mueller to answer any and all questions about Fusion GPS or Christopher Steele surely rekindled my interest.

From the onset I expressed my doubts about the veracity of the Orbis Business Intelligence or [Christopher] Steele dossier. A so-called opposition research in close cooperation with Fusion GPS and British intelligence. I called it early on another dodgy dossier from the British and a (former) MI6 spy. An important role was played by advisor Sir Andrew Wood to give credence to the "raw" intelligence.

The "progressive" community where I blogged since 2004 were believers in Hillary Clinton and the primaries proved to be wrecking the solidarity and unity of the community @BooMan.

The Democrats got their majority in the House and thus chaired all Committees and are able to set the agenda. A reverse of the second Obama administration who had to contend with a Republican opposition in U.S. Congress.

More below the fold ...

Watching en listening to some of the bipartisan discussion yesterday in the the House Judiciary Committee, it became clear the Democrats have not given up and still aim to find ground te start an impeachment procedure. In many ways, these last two years have been a failure to find wrongdoing by candidate Donald Trump in collusion with the Kremlin of Vladimir Putin.

Most of us know that it was the effort of the rightwing oligarchs in cooperation with tech companies like Facebook and Cambridge Analytica who did the real damage to the electoral process to inform voters in Election 2016.

Mueller on Fusion GPS, Glenn Simpson and Christopher Steele: 'Outside my purview'

Yesterday Robert Mueller, respected from all sides for his career as head of the FBI, refused to give any more detail about the Steele dossier than was published in his final report. Mueller made it clear the DOJ has started an investigation into the introduction of the Steele Dossier to the FBI during the 2016 campaign. Furthermore, the DOJ will look how the Steele dossier was used in the FISA request and gathering intelligence from the Donald Trump campaign.

Trump dossier author Steele gets 16-hour DOJ grilling | Politico - July 9, 2019 |

In the past few weeks, new articles were written which seemed to indicate the Horowitz investigate of DOJ found most of the Steele dossier to be truthful ...

Trump 'dossier' author gilled by Justice Department watchdogd: sources | Reuters UK - July 9, 2019 |

Federal lawyers probing the origins of the investigation of ties between Russia and President Donald Trump's campaign have interviewed the author of a "dossier" that alleged misconduct between Trump and Moscow, prompting the lawyers to extend their inquiry.

A police car drives past an address which has been linked by local media to former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele. (Reuters/Peter Nicholls)

Three attorneys from the Inspector General's office of the U.S. Department of Justice met in person in early June with dossier author Christopher Steele in Britain, said two sources with direct knowledge of the lawyers' travels.

Inspector General Michael Horowitz, whose office is an internal Justice Department watchdog, launched his probe in March 2018 amid allegations by Republican lawmakers that the FBI erred in seeking a warrant to monitor Page.

Wishful thinking ...

DOJ's IG Report on Russia Delayed as Steele Found Credible | Washington Monthly - July 9, 2019 |

After those conversations with Steele, the timeline for issuing the I.G. report was pushed back.

    One of the two sources said Horowitz's investigators appear to have found Steele's information sufficiently credible to have to extend the investigation. Its completion date is now unclear.

If this reporting is correct, it casts a new light on the story Fox News was telling over the Fourth of July weekend.

    Key witnesses sought for questioning by Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz early in his investigation into alleged government surveillance abuse have come forward at the 11th hour, Fox News has learned.

    Sources familiar with the matter said at least one witness outside the Justice Department and FBI started cooperating -- a breakthrough that came after Attorney General William Barr ordered U.S. Attorney John Durham to lead a separate investigation into the origins of the bureau's 2016 Russia case that laid the foundation for Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe.

If the one key witness referred to here is actually Christopher Steele, and Steele was found "sufficiently credible" such that the investigation needed to be extended, that's not exactly what the president and his supporters were hoping to hear.


There are clearly some things in Steele's dossier that are wrong, and the administration has really been trying to exploit that in recent months. They've been acting almost giddy about getting Horowitz's report in anticipation of using it as a way to discredit Robert Mueller's scheduled testimony before Congress. Now it looks like the timing is going to be off on that, and there's reason for the administration to be concerned that Horowitz will be helpful at all.

Hmmm ... another view/opinion on the delay of Horowotz DOJ report ...

Justice Dept. Watchdog Has Evidence Comey Probed Trump, on the Sly | RCI - July 22, 2019 |

In addition to adding notes of his meetings and phone calls with Trump to the official FBI case file, Comey had an agent inside the White House who reported back to FBI headquarters about Trump and his aides, according to other officials familiar with the matter.

Although Comey took many actions on his own, he was not working in isolation. One focus of Horowitz's inquiry is the private Jan. 6, 2017, briefing Comey gave the president-elect in New York about material in the Democratic-commissioned dossier compiled by ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele. Reports of that meeting were used days later by BuzzFeed, CNN and other outlets as a news hook for reporting on the dossier's lascivious and unsubstantiated claims.

Comey's meeting with Trump took place one day after the FBI director met in the Oval Office with President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden to discuss how to brief Trump -- a meeting attended by National Security Adviser Susan Rice, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates and National Intelligence Director James Clapper, who would soon go to work for CNN.

Review published in The New York Times in May 2019 ...

U.S. attorney general launches fresh review of origins of Russia probe, appoints John Durham | Reuters - May 2019 |

The Guardian's view on Robert Mueller's testimony: what will Democrats do next? | The Guardian July 24, 2019 |

Is it possible to talk of political theatre when the star of the show refuses to take centre stage? The special counsel Robert Mueller was obliged to come to Capitol Hill by a subpoena, and made his distaste plain on arrival. His reluctance underscored the unlikelihood of great revelations emerging from his testimony to the house judiciary and intelligence committees on potential obstruction of justice, and election meddling by the Russians. He hoped that his 448-page report would speak for itself, even after Donald Trump's attorney general had misspoken on its behalf.

So the hearings were not about discovering new material, but about deploying the existing facts: the Democrats, seeking compelling soundbites that might help to rouse the public and rally them behind the party; the Republicans, seeking to damage the credibility of the investigation itself as biased, unfair and even un-American. The inherent implausibility of claiming simultaneously that the inquiry was a partisan witch-hunt [NY Times], and that it exonerated Mr Trump, go unaddressed.

Mr Mueller's initial statement stressed the impartiality and integrity of his team. He pushed back against Republican attacks upon its composition. Addressing the question of obstruction of justice, he seemed less like Mr Trump's nemesis than his antithesis: sober and tight-lipped, repeatedly returning to yeses and noes and the same non-answers.


Factbox: Which U.S. House Democrats want to impeach Trump? | Reuters |

Possible reason the Horowitz report is delayed after the Christopher Steele interview ...

Kavelec Steele Memo To File 10-11-16

From rightwing press sources [author John Solomon] ...

Christopher Steele met privately at the State Department with Deputy Assistant Secretary Kathleen Kavalec on Oct. 11, 2016.

Kathleen Kavalec: Trump Pulled Ambassador Nomination of State Department Official Who Communicated With Steele and Ohr

FBI conceals State Department documents and misleads FISA court

US Senate Returns to President Trump his Nomination for Ambassador to Tirana

President Trump nominated Kathleen Ann Kavalec to be the US Ambassador to Albania on 9 July 2018. The Senate Foreign Relation Committee initially scheduled a hearing with Ms. Kavalec in August 2018, only to cancel it in the eleventh hour, and did not reschedule it.

The hearing was cancelled following requests by several senators sitting on Foreign Relations Committee for additional information on Ms. Kavalec, as her name appeared in the list of persons that the Senate Intelligence Committee requested to be questioned in relation to knowledge or involvement in the preparation of the Christopher Steele's dossier.

Several American media outlets have revealed that Deputy Assistant Secretary Kathleen Ann Kavalec, her former boss Assistant Secretary Victoria Nuland, and Jonathan Winer, a former adviser to former Secretary John Kerry, had supplied information to former Bruce Or, while Mrs. Kavalec, also, personally met with Christopher Steele.

Related reading – a sidestep or two - …

Svetlana Lokhova Speaks Out: “Stefan Halper Behind False Allegations Provided to U.S. Intelligence” | Intel Today - April 2019 |

Intelligence scholar sues Cambridge academic, U.S. news outlets over reports on Flynn links

    Former Trump foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos said Halper offered him $3,000 to write an academic paper about a gas field in the Mediterranean and conducted an unusual meeting with him at a London bar in September 2016, at which an unidentified female companion of Halper was “very flirty” and attempted to “seduce” him. Papadopoulos has said he believes the woman was a CIA operative or agent, possibly also with ties to Turkish intelligence.
My diary @BooMan in Dec. 2017 ...

Papadopoulos Met Australian Spy Chief in a London Bar

Boris Johnson dragged into Robert Mueller questioning on his first day as PM

After the Brexit Vote and before the Trump nomination by the Republican Party ...

SCL Group, AQI and Brexit-Johnson-Cummings

To distract from the true backers of both referenda and shine the light on Russian culprits ... see the Robert Mueller report and his appearance before U.S. Congress recently.

No surprise, no surprise here! Coaching by the intelligence community where to look for a nemesis.

Secret texts cast light on UK's early role in Trump-Russia inquiry | The Guardian - 1 hr ago |

Two of the most senior intelligence officials in the US and UK privately shared concerns about "our strange situation" as the FBI launched its 2016 investigation into whether Donald Trump's campaign was colluding with Russia, the Guardian has learned.

Text messages between Andrew McCabe, the deputy director of the FBI at the time, and Jeremy Fleming, his then counterpart at MI5, now the head of GCHQ, also reveal their mutual surprise at the result of the EU referendum, which some US officials regarded as a "wake-up call", according to a person familiar with the matter.

While Russia had previously been viewed as a country that would seek to interfere in western elections, the Brexit vote was viewed by some within the FBI as a sign that Russian activities had possibly been successful, the person said.

Their exchanges offer new insights into the start of the FBI's Russia investigation, and how British intelligence appears to have played a key role in the early stages.

In one exchange in August 2016, Fleming noted that members of the FBI and MI5 had "met on our strange situation", a veiled reference to discussions about Russian activities, according to the source.  

The Strzok-Page Texts and the Origins of the Trump-Russia Investigation

Related reading, my diaries ...

British Censor, Pablo Miller MI6 and Oui's Diary
Revealed: Steele A Tool of FBI and CIA for Years

by Oui on Tue Jul 30th, 2019 at 10:01:09 PM EST

Judge dismisses DNC lawsuit against Trump campaign, WikiLeaks and Russia | Axios - 1 hr ago |

by Oui on Tue Jul 30th, 2019 at 10:53:29 PM EST
From my diary ...

NY Times: Collusion Trump Transition Team with UAE/Israel   by Oui @EuroTrib on May 20, 2018

George Nader returns to the U.S. - June 3, 2019

There Are More Charges Pending for George Nader or an Accomplice  | Emptywheel |

On July 19, the government moved to unseal a bunch of search warrants involved in the investigation of George Nader. Among other things, the warrants revealed that Mueller originally obtained warrants for one of Nader's Gmail accounts and a Hotmail account associated with his work on November 30, 2017.

The EDVA obtained a warrant to access the data from the iPhone 7 on which a Mueller-related FBI agent had found child porn on March 16, 2018. The case agent first accessed the data on March 22. Nader skipped town on March 24.

That's ... remarkable timing. It suggests he may have gotten tipped off.

George Nader: How a convicted paedophile became key to an Emirati hook-up with Trump | Middle East Eye - July 5, 2019 |

by Oui on Tue Jul 30th, 2019 at 11:35:32 PM EST
Ollie North (no sex) vs. Butina ("commercial sex")
file in pardons and plea agreements, sex crimes and extortion subfolder
NXIVM: Clare Bronfman, heiress to Seagram's, pleads guilty in self-help sex cult sex slavery sex trafficking prostitution racketeering case
Would that punishment befits crimes against humanity. Wardrobe details.
Personal data hack of 100s of German politicians, celebs
extortion, demanded refund by Ms "Clifford", refund demanded by Bechard, consideration
"thing of value" [4]
privilege vested in the office (Art.II,§2), not the person
Ex Parte Garland, 1862.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 04:09:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
< wipes tears >
Can the "political science" statisticians keep up?

## Anomie is not well-understood.
## Autonomy is not well-understood.
## Heteronomy is not well-understood.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 04:19:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Made You Look!*
Since you asked, I was disappointed not to find Durkheim!

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 04:23:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
With that relatively modern constraint on human "natural selection" in mind, you may be interested in reading or re-reading Totem and Taboo.
"You broke it, you bought it."
~ Powell (not that one, the other one) "Pottery Barn Rule" of "civilization"

Happy Black History Day Y5 D221!

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 04:38:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Arabia Foundation think tank shuts down in Washington | The National - UAE |

Emirates pulls military forces out of Yemen

The U.A.E. Pulls Back From The War In Yemen  

Unrelated reading ...

Dubai ruler's wife asks UK court for forced marriage protection order | The Guardian |

    The estranged wife of the ruler of Dubai has asked an English court for a forced marriage protection order relating to their children and a non-molestation order after the breakdown of the marriage. Princess Haya of Jordan, 45, appeared in the family court division of the high court, central London, for a preliminary hearing.

    A forced marriage protection order aims to protect a person who has been or is being forced into marriage. Non-molestation orders can protect against violence or harassment by a partner, ex-partner or family member.

    Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, who did not appear at the hearing, is arguing in the same proceedings for the return of the couple's two children to Dubai. Princess Haya has applied for wardship of the children.

Fortunately, U.S. Senate lacked the votes to override Trump's veto for blocking arms shipments to the Saudi Royals - Salman & Co. ...

US Senate fails to block Trump vetoes on Saudi arms sales | France24 |

by Oui on Tue Jul 30th, 2019 at 11:38:21 PM EST
by generic on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 07:32:08 AM EST
Besides, the headlines are not wrong. The hearings were boring. Mueller did seem old, out of his depth, weary, and confused. After years of breathlessly hyping Mueller, MSNBC's house conspiracy theorist, Rachel Maddow, made a swift pivot to a secondary character -- his deputy and right-hand man, Aaron Zelby, heretofore unknown to the audience out in TV-land. "Mueller's performance today," she announced, "puts a spotlight on the man who was sitting next to him and not speaking today, his deputy, Aaron Zebley. He's described now as the deputy special counsel. We're now told that he ran the day-to-day operations of the investigation and the rest of Mueller's staff."

We're now told.

by generic on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 07:34:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Urban dictionary explains - kabuki.

Robert Mueller did not want to come and be a figurant in political theater U.S. Congress has become. A wise decision. Mueller had to be subpoened to make an appearance with knives from both parties on the desk.

Democrats forcing Robert Mueller to testify about his report could sabotage their case for impeachment

Unfortunately for both Republicans and Democrats, DOJ William Barr had stipulated Robert Mueller could only provide information already written in the final, censured report of 480 pages. A show case ... Mueller acted accordingly to no ones surprise.

For me his refusal to answer all questions concerning Christopher Steele and the Orbis Business Intelligence project and Fusion GPS with Glenn Simpson was a surprise. Mueller referred all qustions to other DOJ investigations underway by Horowitz and Durham.

Case shut for now until the next leaks and journalists running to form the opinions via social media.

With Mueller on Justice staff, Barr has sway over testimony | AP News - May 9, 2019 |
Robert Mueller's Testimony and the Garbled Language of Politics | The New Yorker |

by Oui on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 08:33:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
IOZ thread is "the situation here is pretty psychotic" all. the. way. down.

Love this dude.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Jul 31st, 2019 at 02:37:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
DNC vs Russian Federation, et al.
The plaintiff, the Democratic National Committee ("DNC"), brings this action against Donald J. Trump For President, Inc. ("the Campaign"); Donald J. Trump, Jr. ("Trump Jr."); Paul J. Manafort, Jr.; Jared C. Kushner; George Papadopoulous; and Richard W. Gates, III (collectively, the "campaign defendants"); Roger J. Stone, Jr.; the Russian Federation; Aras Iskenerovich Agalarov Emin Araz Agalarov; Joseph Misfud; Wikileaks; and Julian Assage.1
1 In the orginal complaint, the BNC also named as defendants the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, the Rusian operative using the pseudonym Fuccifer 2.0, and 10 John Doe defendants. (Dkt. No. 1.) Those defendants wer not named in the Second [!] Amended Complaint. (Dkt. No. 217.)
But, as explained below, under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, 28 U.S.C §1602 et seq. ("FSIA"), the Russian Federation cannot be sued in the courts of the united States for government actions, subject to certain limited exceptions not present in this case, just as the United States government generally cannot be sued in courts abroad for its actions. The remedies for hostile actions by foreign governments are state actions, including sanctions imposed by the executive and legislative branches of government.

The DNC seeks to hold the second-level participants in this alleged activity--the Campaign, the Campaign defendants, Wikileaks, Assange, the Agalarovs, Mifsud, and Stone--liable for dissemination of the stolen materials. But, as also explained below, the First Amendment prevents such liability in the same way it would preclude liability for press outlets that publish materials of public interest despite defects in the way the materials were obtained so long as the disseminator did not participate in any wrongdoing in obtaining the materials in the first place.
Therefore, for reasons explained below, the defendants' motion to dismiss the Second Amended Compaint is granted. ...

"yada, yada, yada"

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Thu Aug 1st, 2019 at 08:59:31 AM EST
Fuccifer - as in Guccifer 2.0

DNC was no surprise as the FBI warned beforehand and the intelligence alliance 5+ Eyes were informed by Dutch intelligence from Dec. 2014 onward!!

Discussion about Ukraine is lacking in the election interference ... all distraction by U.S. Congress was pointed [painted] at the Kremlin.

Poroshenko's Losing Bet On A Clinton Win

Guccifer 2.0 by Oui @BooMan on March 23, 2018

    Dutch Hackers Infiltrated Kremlin's Cozy Bear in 2014

        Dutch hackers infiltrated Cozy Bear HQ in an university building near Kremlin's Red Square. Once inside the Cozy Bear computer network the Dutch managed to  take control of the security camera at the entrance to the computer room. A photo of each person entering the secure location was gathered. All the intelligence was shared real time with the NSA as the Dutch civil (AIVD) and military intelligence (MIVD) are part of the AngloSaxon nine-eyes spy network.

        The Russians succeeded to infiltrate inside the White House and compromise e-mail and communications traffic.

        In July 2015 Cozy Bear infiltrated DNC computer systems.

Dutch cyber warfare hackers provided crucial evidence about Russian interference during election 2016 | Dutch De Volkskrant |

Russian Hack - Keeping Up Appearances

Related reading ...

How a Remote Town in Romania Has Become Cybercrime Central | Wired - Jan. 31, 2011 | [Limited # articles]

Meet the original Guccifer - Marcel Lazar Lehel ...

[Pronounced GOO-chi-fer, meaning "the style of Gucci and the light of Lucifer"]

A journey through 'Hackerville,' Romanian city with a reputation as a criminal hacker breeding ground

More cyberwarfare not in the news every day ...

Inside The Ukrainian 'Hacktivist' Network Cyberbattling The Kremlin | RFERL - Nov. 2016 |
Frankfurt used as remote hacking base for the CIA: WikiLeaks | Deutsche Welle - March 2017 |

by Oui on Thu Aug 1st, 2019 at 11:41:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If you take time off like that, you fall behind our president's tweets. For example, Fox News showed third-rate congressman John Ratcliffe taking aggressive pot shots at Mueller, so the president abruptly fired (via Twitter) the current Director of National Intelligence, Dan Coats, who from all reports was a truth-teller and already in trouble for being so, and said (via Twitter) that he would nominate Ratcliffe in his place.

But subsequently some minor shortcomings in Ratcliffe's resume were exposed by the fake news media, to the point where even the GOP couldn't stomach his appointment, and today Trump yanked (via Twitter) his nomination, after which Ratcliffe withdrew his candidacy.

At this point, according to law, the second in command under Coats should be in line to run things, but she is unfortunately a female and another one of those troublemaking truth-tellers, so all bets are off.

Luckily, our government is by Only The Best, so a solution will be forthcoming quite soon. Check Fox News for next nominee.

by asdf on Sat Aug 3rd, 2019 at 12:04:36 AM EST
by Oui on Sat Aug 3rd, 2019 at 12:28:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Sat Aug 3rd, 2019 at 04:23:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No one listens to lying John Brennan anymore ...

No kidding?

John Ratcliffe: Trump's pick for intelligence chief drops out  

Thank you Mr. President ...

Trump's pick for intelligence director misrepresented role in anti-terror case

by Oui on Sat Aug 3rd, 2019 at 04:27:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
another one of those troublemaking truth-tellers
like Rothstein.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sat Aug 3rd, 2019 at 02:09:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
she is unfortunately a female
this.empowerment(gina haspel)

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sat Aug 3rd, 2019 at 02:11:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Clarification of the term "fusion" as in Fusion GPS. - the people and money behind the British 'Dodgy Dossier" of MI6 agent Christopher Steele. Gathering dirt on political adversaries ... quite similar to "chatacter assassination".

Read today's article in The Guardian ... big money corrupts.

Revealed: how Monsanto's 'intelligence center' targeted journalists and activists

Monsanto operated a "fusion center" to monitor and discredit journalists and activists, and targeted a reporter who wrote a critical book on the company, documents reveal. The agrochemical corporation also investigated the singer Neil Young and wrote an internal memo on his social media activity and music.

The records reviewed by the Guardian show Monsanto adopted a multi-pronged strategy to target Carey Gillam, a Reuters journalist who investigated the company's weedkiller and its links to cancer. Monsanto, now owned by the German pharmaceutical corporation Bayer, also monitored a not-for-profit food research organization through its "intelligence fusion center", a term that the FBI and other law enforcement agencies use for operations focused on surveillance and terrorism.

'Marriage of death': Protesters oppose Bayer-Monsanto merger
Arkansas Delta Farming and "chemical trespass" by dicamba

Related reading ...

Fusion Centers: Issues and Options for Congress - Jan. 2008
The Doctrine of Preemption Comes Home by danps @EuroTrib on Sept. 6, 2008

by Oui on Thu Aug 8th, 2019 at 01:33:49 PM EST
peaking out of the mist of time!

Whither DNI --not least among the diabolical child programs established by the Patriot Acts.

Thank you for the references -- especially everyCRSReport.com. < wipes tears > an indispensable for everyone who has to pass the bill before they know what's in it! Or cannot locate a bill number and congress.gov.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Thu Aug 8th, 2019 at 02:01:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Fri Aug 9th, 2019 at 07:49:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Go to: [ European Tribune Homepage : Top of page : Top of comments ]

Top Diaries