New Flynn Transcripts Confirm Mueller Team Lied To The Court And The Country
New Flynn Transcripts Confirm Mueller Team Lied To The Court And The Country By Margot Cleveland for
The newly released transcripts should cause longtime federal Judge Emmet Sullivan to realize the error of his way and immediately dismiss the charges against Michael Flynn.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office deceived the country and a federal court about former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s late-December 2016 conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. Now, more than three years later, Americans are only first learning about that deception thanks to the release of recently declassified transcripts of the calls.
Newly confirmed Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe on Friday shared with congressional oversight committees the summaries and transcripts of intercepted communications between Flynn and Kislyak. The move followed former acting Director of National Intelligence Ric Grenell’s decision to declassify nearly all portions of the Flynn-Kislyak telephone conversations from late 2016 and early 2017.
The transcripts prove a treasure trove of evidence of the Deep State’s plot to frame Flynn, who pleaded guilty Dec. 1, 2017, to making false statements to FBI agents Peter Strzok and Joe Pientka during a Jan. 24, 2017 interview of Flynn. In a “Statement of Offense” filed that same day with the D.C. District Court, federal prosecutor and Mueller team member Brandon Van Grack “stipulate[d] and agree[d]” that the facts detailed in the Statement of Offense were “true and accurate.”
Van Grack then attested in the Statement of Offense that Flynn knew that “on or about December 28, 2016, then-President Barack Obama signed Executive Order 13757, which was to take effect the following day. The executive order announced sanctions against Russia in response to that government’s action intended to interfere with the 2016 presidential election (‘U.S. Sanctions’).”
Russian Expulsions Were Not Sanctions
The Statement of Offense professed that on Dec. 29, 2016, “FLYNN called the Russian Ambassador and requested that Russia not escalate the situation and only respond to the U.S. Sanctions in a reciprocal manner.”
According to the Statement of Offense, during questioning by the FBI agents, “FLYNN falsely stated that he did not ask Russia’s Ambassador to the United States (‘Russian Ambassador’) to refrain from escalating the situation in response to sanctions that the United States had imposed against Russia,” and “also falsely stated that he did not remember a follow-up conversation in which the Russian Ambassador stated that Russia had chosen to moderate its response to those sanctions as a result of FLYNN’S request.”
However, the transcripts released Friday establish that, contrary to the special counsel office’s attestation, Flynn never asked the Russian ambassador to “not escalate the situation and only respond to the U.S. Sanctions in a reciprocal manner.” In fact, Flynn never raised the “U.S. Sanctions” — defined by the special counsel’s office as the sanctions announced by Obama Dec. 28, 2016, in Executive Order 13757 — with the Russian ambassador at all.
In that executive order, as summarized in a White House press release, Obama “sanctioned nine entities and individuals: the GRU and the FSB, two Russian intelligence services; four individual officers of the GRU; and three companies that provided material support to the GRU’s cyber operations.” The press release also detailed a number of additional Obama administration actions, beyond the sanctions, “in response to the Russian government’s aggressive harassment of U.S. officials and cyber operations aimed at the U.S. election.”
Of relevance to the Flynn case was the State Department “shutting down two Russian compounds, in Maryland and New York, used by Russian personnel for intelligence-related purposes,” and declaring “‘persona non grata’ 35 Russian intelligence operatives.”
While the Obama administration ejected the Russian personnel in response to the Kremlin’s interference with the 2016 election, the expulsions were not part of Executive Order 13757 and thus were not “U.S. Sanctions” as defined in the Flynn Statement of Offense. This distinction matters because the recently released transcripts establish that Flynn did not ask Kislyak to do anything — or refrain from doing anything — in response to the sanctions.