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Subject: Alleged Trump Putin cultivation. rss

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Mac Mcleod
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http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/10/veteran-spy-gave...

A Veteran Spy Has Given the FBI Information Alleging a Russian Operation to Cultivate Donald Trump


Quote:

On Sunday, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid upped the ante. He sent Comey a fiery letter saying the FBI chief may have broken the law and pointed to a potentially greater controversy: "In my communications with you and other top officials in the national security community, it has become clear that you possess explosive information about close ties and coordination between Donald Trump, his top advisors, and the Russian government…The public has a right to know this information."

...

But Reid's recent note hinted at more than the Page or Manafort affairs. And a former senior intelligence officer for a Western country who specialized in Russian counterintelligence tells Mother Jones that in recent months he provided the bureau with memos, based on his recent interactions with Russian sources, contending the Russian government has for years tried to co-opt and assist Trump—and that the FBI requested more information from him.
"This is something of huge significance, way above party politics," the former intelligence officer says. "I think [Trump's] own party should be aware of this stuff as well."

Does this mean the FBI is investigating whether Russian intelligence has attempted to develop a secret relationship with Trump or cultivate him as an asset? Was the former intelligence officer and his material deemed credible or not? An FBI spokeswoman says, "Normally, we don't talk about whether we are investigating anything." But a senior US government official not involved in this case but familiar with the former spy tells Mother Jones that he has been a credible source with a proven record of providing reliable, sensitive, and important information to the US government.

...

Mother Jones has reviewed that report and other memos this former spy wrote. The first memo, based on the former intelligence officer's conversations with Russian sources, noted, "Russian regime has been cultivating, supporting and assisting TRUMP for at least 5 years. Aim, endorsed by PUTIN, has been to encourage splits and divisions in western alliance." It maintained that Trump "and his inner circle have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals." It claimed that Russian intelligence had "compromised" Trump during his visits to Moscow and could "blackmail him." It also reported that Russian intelligence had compiled a dossier on Hillary Clinton based on "bugged conversations she had on various visits to Russia and intercepted phone calls."

The former intelligence officer says the response from the FBI was "shock and horror." The FBI, after receiving the first memo, did not immediately request additional material, according to the former intelligence officer and his American associates. Yet in August, they say, the FBI asked him for all information in his possession and for him to explain how the material had been gathered and to identify his sources. The former spy forwarded to the bureau several memos—some of which referred to members of Trump's inner circle. After that point, he continued to share information with the FBI. "It's quite clear there was or is a pretty substantial inquiry going on," he says.

"This is something of huge significance, way above party politics," the former intelligence officer comments. "I think [Trump's] own party should be aware of this stuff as well."

...

There's no way to tell whether the FBI has confirmed or debunked any of the allegations contained in the former spy's memos. But a Russian intelligence attempt to co-opt or cultivate a presidential candidate would mark an even more serious operation than the hacking.

In the letter Reid sent to Comey on Sunday, he pointed out that months ago he had asked the FBI director to release information on Trump's possible Russia ties. Since then, according to a Reid spokesman, Reid has been briefed several times. The spokesman adds, "He is confident that he knows enough to be extremely alarmed."


This is a late breaking story on halloween. I'd wait for validation fro other news services before I freaked out.

I'm not sure what the u.s. could do if Russia has gotten to one of our candidates for president. It would be unprecedented.

http://indianexpress.com/article/world/world-news/trump-camp...

It makes me wonder about earlier bits.
http://observer.com/2016/08/yes-american-spies-really-think-...

Quote:
In today’s New York Times, former Central Intelligence Agency director Mike Morell initiated a firestorm by strongly endorsing Hillary Clinton for president. His memorable op-ed didn’t simply back the Democrat, her own grave security lapses notwithstanding. Morell went further, tearing down her Republican opponent as “not only unqualified for the job, but he may well pose a threat to our national security… he would be a poor, even dangerous, commander in chief.”

Normally that would be sufficiently lethal coming from a former CIA director, but Morell kept going, castigating Donald Trump as a pawn of the Kremlin possessing overtly pro-Russian views. He minced no words: “In the intelligence business, we would say that Putin had recruited Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation.”


I don't see Clinton as capable or the type to build a fake case that Putin has influence over Trump. Nothing she's said in the debates indicate that she thought Trump was that kind of threat to the country.

But, it's always possible that people outside of Clinton's direct circle could be waging a dirty tricks campaign to paint Trump as a Putin pawn.

If the story is true, what kind of blackmail material would matter to a man like Trump? Don't answer that. I'm just thinking out loud. Let's wait for more information to come out.
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I don't think Trump is a Russian agent. He's a moron that Putin knows he can manipulate effortlessly.
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Chris Binkowski
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http://www.businessinsider.com/fbi-donald-trump-russia-conne...
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whac3 wrote:
I don't think Trump is a Russian agent. He's a moron that Putin knows he can manipulate effortlessly.


I would tend to think that, as well. However, I note that, in debates or campaign speeches, when lying outright or using bullying tactics to deny activity which he seems to think is not wrong (such as assaulting women -- he really doesn't think there's anything wrong with sexually assaulting women in the way he has) -- he uses a particular voice. He can lie so aggressively about it because, in his mind (I think) he doesn't see anything wrong with what he's done.

When talking about Putin or Russia, however, he uses a different voice. Consider, for instance, his "no puppet" rejoinder to Clinton in debate 3 when she accused him of being a Putin puppet. He sounded guilty; he looked guilty. He looked and sounded like he had been exposed. His comments in his later campaign speeches about how the US should "get along with Russia" sound like he's rationalizing, as if he's trying to hide something which he himself recognizes to be wrong.
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Matt Yglesias on Trump-Russia speculation:
Quote:
What to make of all this
Breathless speculation about possible Trump-Russia leaks is a lot more fun than boring policy analysis. But Trump’s policy views on matters related to Russia are a lot clearer than any of these cloak-and-dagger allegations.

He’s called for greater US-Russian cooperation in Syria, signaled sympathy for Russia’s seizure of Crimea, and most of all he’s called for dismantling the NATO alliance.

These are policy ideas that can be assessed on the merits (they’re terrible, in my opinion) completely separately from the question of exactly what motivated Trump to adopt them.
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Sarxis wrote:


My question is, if the Russians' goal was 'only' to disrupt the election, why are all of the cyberattacks only targeting Trump's opponents?

BusinessInsider.com wrote:
In a New York Times report published Monday night, the newspaper cited law-enforcement officials who said, if anything, the cyberattacks that US intelligence agencies suspect Russia of carrying out against Democratic Party organizations were "aimed at disrupting the presidential election rather than electing Trump."

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wifwendell wrote:
Sarxis wrote:


My question is, if the Russians' goal was 'only' to disrupt the election, why are all of the cyberattacks only targeting Trump's opponents?

BusinessInsider.com wrote:
In a New York Times report published Monday night, the newspaper cited law-enforcement officials who said, if anything, the cyberattacks that US intelligence agencies suspect Russia of carrying out against Democratic Party organizations were "aimed at disrupting the presidential election rather than electing Trump."



Because electing Trump is 4yrs of disruption.
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jageroxorz wrote:


Nothing ever changes over time. It's also true 5hat Russia isn't a threat so much as an annoyance. If only we'd had a few mor3 coilers in the Atlantic fleet this wouldn't happen.
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whac3 wrote:
I don't think Trump is a Russian agent. He's a moron that Putin knows he can manipulate effortlessly.


Not to mention the probable financial links between Trump and Russia....
 
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According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.
 
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jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


That's not how statistics work, at all.
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Sarxis wrote:


Good Morning America (?!) says thee nay!




Quote:
despite what Donald Trump has claimed to you and to others and ABC News investigation has found his real estate fortunes have benefited greatly from Russian investors and their millions potentially putting


And from the totally legit website I found the ABC video on.

Quote:
An ABC News investigation has found that Donald Trump has “numerous ties” to Russian interests both here in the United States and in Russia. “The level of business amounts to hundreds of millions of dollars — what he received as a result of interaction with Russian businessmen. They were happy to invest with him, and they were happy to work with Donald Trump. And they were happy to associate—[and] be associated with Donald Trump” says Sergei Millian, who heads a U.S.-Russia business group.

Trump has reaped huge profits off his business deals with Russian oligarchs that stretch from hosting the 2013 Miss Universe contest in Moscow and selling Trump-branded real estate to “large numbers” of Russian buyers – so many that the Sunny and Hollywood Islands in Florida became known as “Little Moscow.”

When the US State Department leveled sanctions on the Russian oligarchs in 2014 following Moscow’s annexation of the Crimea, the oligarchs had one of their key money-laundering tools cut off. If Trump were president, however, he could end the sanctions and allow them to continue to enrich themselves – and Trump himself. “We’ll be looking at that, yeah we’ll be looking” said Trump on the issue of sanctions in July.
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'Putin influence' shall "mushroom" outward from TRUMP, since he's: "Kept in the 'dark' and 'thrives' on 'shit'!"
goo ~"I..didn't exhale 'spores'?"
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GROGnads wrote:
'Putin influence' shall "mushroom" outward from TRUMP, since he's: "Kept in the 'dark' and 'thrives' on 'shit'!"
goo ~"I..didn't exhale 'spores'?"

That was surprisingly cogent for a Grognards post. I think I actually followed that.

shake

Losing your touch, dude...
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GROGnads wrote:
'Putin influence' shall "mushroom" outward from TRUMP, since he's: "Kept in the 'dark' and 'thrives' on 'shit'!"
goo ~"I..didn't exhale 'spores'?"
Elfbane wrote:

That was surprisingly cogent for a Grognards post. I think I actually followed that.

shake

Losing your touch, dude...
Maybe, your 'meds' "kicked-in" just then? MINE already had'! modest
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Shadrach wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


That's not how statistics work, at all.


50% of the time I'm right 100% of the time.
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jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


So if another nation becomes dangerous than it is always our fault?
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jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


So if another nation becomes dangerous than it is always our fault?


If 2 years before you were mocking someone who said that they were a threat, then yes, because obviously your policies were not taking that into consideration.
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jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


So if another nation becomes dangerous than it is always our fault?


If 2 years before you were mocking someone who said that they were a threat, then yes, because obviously your policies were not taking that into consideration.


Sorry but that still seems overly simplistic to me. It would be nice to believe that our policies can control or even have an effect on every other country in the world, but I find that arrogant and naive.
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jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


So if another nation becomes dangerous than it is always our fault?


If 2 years before you were mocking someone who said that they were a threat, then yes, because obviously your policies were not taking that into consideration.


Sorry but that still seems overly simplistic to me. It would be nice to believe that our policies can control or even have an effect on every other country in the world, but I find that arrogant and naive.


I find it arrogant and naive that Obama's response to the well-reasoned argument that Russia is our largest geopolitical foe is to scoff and say "1980 wants its foreign policy back".

Of course, now Russia's the big-bad-boogeyman. But doesn't that mean Romney was right, and Obama should have been taking them more seriously a few years ago?
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jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


So if another nation becomes dangerous than it is always our fault?


If 2 years before you were mocking someone who said that they were a threat, then yes, because obviously your policies were not taking that into consideration.


Sorry but that still seems overly simplistic to me. It would be nice to believe that our policies can control or even have an effect on every other country in the world, but I find that arrogant and naive.


I find it arrogant and naive that Obama's response to the well-reasoned argument that Russia is our largest geopolitical foe is to scoff and say "1980 wants its foreign policy back".

Of course, now Russia's the big-bad-boogeyman. But doesn't that mean Romney was right, and Obama should have been taking them more seriously a few years ago?


I agree with you that what Obama said may have been arrogant and naive. I still would not lay blame at his feet for Russia becoming dangerous. Things like that are far more complicated than making a statement in a debate.
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jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


So if another nation becomes dangerous than it is always our fault?


If 2 years before you were mocking someone who said that they were a threat, then yes, because obviously your policies were not taking that into consideration.


Sorry but that still seems overly simplistic to me. It would be nice to believe that our policies can control or even have an effect on every other country in the world, but I find that arrogant and naive.


I find it arrogant and naive that Obama's response to the well-reasoned argument that Russia is our largest geopolitical foe is to scoff and say "1980 wants its foreign policy back".

Of course, now Russia's the big-bad-boogeyman. But doesn't that mean Romney was right, and Obama should have been taking them more seriously a few years ago?


I agree with you that what Obama said may have been arrogant and naive. I still would not lay blame at his feet for Russia becoming dangerous. Things like that are far more complicated than making a statement in a debate.


You don't think his policies have had any effect or exacerbated the situation?

That seems naive to me.
 
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Elfbane wrote:

That was surprisingly cogent for a Grognards post. I think I actually followed that.

shake

Losing your touch, dude...
wow itsblankablanktrump
 
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jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
jeff brown wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
According to Hillary, Russia is one step away from World War 3. Who's fault is it that this happened?

Either Democrats were 100% wrong then, or they are 100% wrong now.


So if another nation becomes dangerous than it is always our fault?


If 2 years before you were mocking someone who said that they were a threat, then yes, because obviously your policies were not taking that into consideration.


Sorry but that still seems overly simplistic to me. It would be nice to believe that our policies can control or even have an effect on every other country in the world, but I find that arrogant and naive.


I find it arrogant and naive that Obama's response to the well-reasoned argument that Russia is our largest geopolitical foe is to scoff and say "1980 wants its foreign policy back".

Of course, now Russia's the big-bad-boogeyman. But doesn't that mean Romney was right, and Obama should have been taking them more seriously a few years ago?


I agree with you that what Obama said may have been arrogant and naive. I still would not lay blame at his feet for Russia becoming dangerous. Things like that are far more complicated than making a statement in a debate.


You don't think his policies have had any effect or exacerbated the situation?

That seems naive to me.


What effect his policies have had on the situation is a much more complicated messy question. How you interpret the messiness is of course going to depend far more on biases than on actual facts regardless of where you lie on the political spectrum.

Where responsibility lies is much more simple though. If Russia has become a danger then its because Russia has decided to become a danger.

Overall though I think that presidents (or any politicians) get way more blame and credit then they deserve on any number of topics from the economy, crime rates, actions of foreign nations, etc. Most of what happens, good or bad is far outside of their power to affect.

I think this applies to both Democratic and Republican presidents. The world is a far more complicated and messy place then our political rhetoric allows for. I don't blame Obama for Russia even though it happened while he was president just like I don't blame the economic meltdown in 2008 on Bush.
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