What Did Flynn Lie About?

by SP

What  Did Michael Flynn Lie About?

It looks like there were 2 primary events Flynn did not discuss in the way the FBI wanted him to.

1.  Giving a lecture in Moscow paid for by the news and entertainment agency RT.  (here and here)

2. During the Obama to Trump transition period, in the last week of December 2016, Flynn talked on the phone with the Russian Ambassador Sergey I. Kislyak, asking him NOT to retaliate to Obama sanctions against Russia, ostensibly levied in retaliation for Russia “interfering” in the election of Trump.

Paid lecture in Moscow

Congressman Jason Chaffetz and Elijah Cummings of the House Oversight Committee said … that in 2016, Michael Flynn did not disclose on an application to renew his security clearance that he was paid for a speech delivered for Russia Today in Moscow.

“As a former military officer, you simply cannot take money from ["]Russia[["]u>, Turkey or anybody else,” Jason Chaffetz said during a press conference today. “And it appears as if he did take that money.”

Chaffetz also said that legally, Flynn was supposed to get permission to receive money from [“["]ia[“]<["]th from the secretary of state and the secretary of the Army, and there is not currently evidence that he did so.

Misleading is the conflation of the terms “Russia” and the news and entertainment organization “Russia Today (RT).”

Also misleading is the implication that this public lecture for RT was conducted secretly or that it was deliberately hidden from the US government.  This was not the case.

Michael Flynn’s attorney said in a statement today,  “As has previously been reported, General Flynn briefed the Defense Intelligence Agency, a component agency of DoD, extensively regarding the RT speaking event trip both before and after the trip, and he answered any questions that were posed by DIA concerning the trip during those briefings.”

Conversation with the Russian Ambassador during the Obama to Trump transition period 

The New York Times offers a timeline of this event and is recommended.

1. Dec 28.  President Barack Obama signs an executive order announcing sanctions against Russia for trying to interfere with the 2016 presidential election. The executive order takes effect the next day.

2. Dec. 28. Sergey I. Kislyak, the Russian ambassador, contacts Michael T. Flynn.

3.  Dec. 29.  Mr. Flynn calls a senior transition official to talk about what to say to Mr. Kislyak. They also discuss that “members of the presidential transition team” at Mar-a-Lago “did not want Russia to escalate the situation.”

4.  Dec. 29.  Immediately after that call, Mr. Flynn calls Mr. Kislyak and asks that Russia not escalate the situation.

5.  Dec 29.  Shortly after his call with Mr. Kislyak, Mr. Flynn calls the transition official to report on his conversation with the Russian ambassador.

6. Dec. 30.  President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia announces he will not take retaliatory measures in response to the sanctions.

7.  Dec. 30.  Mr. Trump praises Mr. Putin’s response on Twitter: “I always knew he was very smart!”

8.  Dec 31.   Mr. Kislyak calls Mr. Flynn and tells him that, in response to Mr. Flynn’s request, Russia chose not to retaliate.

9.  Dec 31. Mr. Flynn tells senior members of the transition team what Mr. Kislyak told him.

What then follows is a circus of obscuring, deceptions and false statements as the Trump transition team attempts to hide this back door negotiation from the public while the Deep state attempts to create the impression of a secret and malign influence of Russia on Trump.

My own take on this is that the back door diplomacy was very reasonable, above board, and seems to have been conducted in good faith with an overall goal of improving relationships between the United States and Russia, a goal that I share.

This backdoor negotiation is only problematic from the viewpoint that it failed to feed the vilification of Russianarrative.

During the Cuban Missile Crisis secret backdoor negotiations between Kennedy and Khrushchev permitted a de-escalation.  The USSR removed missiles from Cuba and 6 months later, the US removed intermediate range nuclear missiles aimed at the USSR from Turkey.  Kennedy reportedly asked Khrushchev in secret correspondence to never publicly acknowledge that the removal of US nuclear missiles from Turkey was a part of the negotiated settlement as Kennedy could not appear to be “soft” on the USSR, domestically.

Private communications have a legitimate place in human affairs.

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