November 12, 2017


Bob Mueller Seems to Be Closing in on Mike Flynn -- and the Indictments Could Be Explosive (Cristian Farias, 11/11/17, New York)

The White House was reportedly relieved when Robert Mueller, the special counsel probing Russian interference in last year's presidential election, didn't announce federal charges against Michael Flynn, Donald Trump's former national-security adviser and the shortest-lived holder of that office. Instead, Mueller made his first public splash by indicting Paul Manafort and his aide Rick Gates and cutting a plea deal with foreign-policy adviser George Papadopoulos -- all for conduct during or predating the campaign.

But a new report in today's Wall Street Journal should rock the Trump administration, if not the president himself, because it deals with postelection conduct that may have continued even after the inauguration. Mueller is said to be investigating whether Flynn and his son were scheming with the government of Turkey to essentially kidnap Fethullah Gulen, a cleric living in Pennsylvania who has long been a thorn in the side of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The purported plot, if carried out, would've netted the Flynns up to $15 million. [...]

[T]he stakes for Trump are even higher. As much as the president likes to claim that the special counsel's work is a ruse and that he's not personally implicated in the fact-finding mission, it was this prong of the probe -- not Manafort's, not his son's meeting in Trump Tower with a Kremlin-connected lawyer -- that so worried him so as to instruct James Comey to drop it. "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go," the fired FBI director recalled Trump saying during his explosive Senate testimony. When Comey didn't do as told, Trump fired him.

Posted by at November 12, 2017 6:21 PM