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Member since: Tue May 13, 2014, 08:35 PM
Number of posts: 912

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Russian Sleeper Cells Threatening US Security Identified

How the shutdown affects the people's struggle

From the horse's mouth: "colusion"!

Rudy Giuliani says Trump didn't collude with Russia but can't say if campaign aides did
CNN Digital Expansion 2018, Caroline Kelly

By Caroline Kelly, CNN

Updated 8:56 AM ET, Thu January 17, 2019
Giuliani: I never said there was no collusion

(CNN)Rudy Giuliani said Wednesday that he never denied President Donald Trump's campaign colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 campaign, only that the President himself was not involved in collusion.

In an interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo on "Cuomo Prime Time," Giuliani, a former New York mayor and Trump's attorney, said he doesn't know if other people in the campaign, including former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, were working with the Kremlin during the 2016 presidential race.

"I never said there was no collusion between the campaign, or people in the campaign," Giuliani said.
He added, "I said the President of the United States. There is not a single bit of evidence the President of the United States committed the only crime you can commit here, conspiring with the Russians to hack the DNC."

It's another remarkable statement from Giuliani, given that the President and his supporters have repeatedly denied any collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. A person familiar with the matter told CNN last week that Manafort, while serving as Trump's campaign chairman, tried to send internal polling data from the Trump campaign with two Kremlin-supporting Ukrainian oligarchs through his associate Konstantin Kilimnik, a Russian national who is linked to Russian intelligence.

When Cuomo asked if Manafort sharing such data with foreign agents constituted collusion, Giuliani said Trump never shared the polling data himself and only found out about it recently in the news.

"Donald Trump wasn't giving polling data to anyone," Giuliani said, adding, "he did not know about it until it was revealed a few weeks ago in an article."

Trump himself has tweeted at least 13 times directly saying there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. The latest such denial came on December 10.

"Democrats can't find a Smocking (sic) Gun tying the Trump campaign to Russia after James Comey's testimony. No Smocking (sic) Gun...No Collusion.' @FoxNews. That's because there was NO COLLUSION. So now the Dems go to a simple private transaction, wrongly call it a campaign contribution," Trump tweeted, referencing a quote that was said on Fox News.

The President reacting to a filing in the court case of his former attorney, Michael Cohen, and the money paid to two women during the 2016 campaign who allege they've had extramarital affairs with Trump. Trump has denied both allegations.

Trump later added, "Which it was not (but even if it was, it is only a CIVIL CASE, like Obama's - but it was done correctly by a lawyer and there would not even be a fine. Lawyer's liability if he made a mistake, not me). Cohen just trying to get his sentence reduced. WITCH HUNT!"

In the interview with Cuomo, Giuliani challenged special counsel Robert Mueller to provide evidence of wrongdoing by the President.

"Let's see if he's got anything -- I challenge him to show us some evidence that the President was involved in anything approaching criminal conduct," Giuliani said.

He added, "If you want to do an ethics investigation fine, do an ethics investigation. But you don't need a special prosecutor for that."

Later in the interview, Giuliani shot down reports that he had said Trump's legal team should get to edit Mueller's report before it goes public.

Giuliani told Cuomo that he only meant Trump's legal team should get to see Mueller's final report before it goes public in order to write a response, but stressed that he does not want to alter the report and supports as much of it being published as national security allows.

This is a breaking story and will be updated.

A Fool-Proof Border Wall

F.B.I. Opened Inquiry Into Whether Trump Was Secretly Working on Behalf of Russia

F.B.I. Opened Inquiry Into Whether Trump Was Secretly Working on Behalf of Russia
By Adam Goldman, Michael S. Schmidt and Nicholas Fandos

Jan. 11, 2019

WASHINGTON — In the days after President Trump fired James B. Comey as F.B.I. director, law enforcement officials became so concerned by the president’s behavior that they began investigating whether he had been working on behalf of Russia against American interests, according to former law enforcement officials and others familiar with the investigation.

The inquiry carried explosive implications. Counterintelligence investigators had to consider whether the president’s own actions constituted a possible threat to national security. Agents also sought to determine whether Mr. Trump was knowingly working for Russia or had unwittingly fallen under Moscow’s influence.

The investigation the F.B.I. opened into Mr. Trump also had a criminal aspect, which has long been publicly known: whether his firing of Mr. Comey constituted obstruction of justice.

Agents and senior F.B.I. officials had grown suspicious of Mr. Trump’s ties to Russia during the 2016 campaign but held off on opening an investigation into him, the people said, in part because they were uncertain how to proceed with an inquiry of such sensitivity and magnitude. But the president’s activities before and after Mr. Comey’s firing in May 2017, particularly two instances in which Mr. Trump tied the Comey dismissal to the Russia investigation, helped prompt the counterintelligence aspect of the inquiry, the people said.

The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, took over the inquiry into Mr. Trump when he was appointed, days after F.B.I. officials opened it. That inquiry is part of Mr. Mueller’s broader examination of how Russian operatives interfered in the 2016 election and whether any Trump associates conspired with them. It is unclear whether Mr. Mueller is still pursuing the counterintelligence matter, and some former law enforcement officials outside the investigation have questioned whether agents overstepped in opening it.

The criminal and counterintelligence elements were coupled together into one investigation, former law enforcement officials said in interviews in recent weeks, because if Mr. Trump had ousted the head of the F.B.I. to impede or even end the Russia investigation, that was both a possible crime and a national security concern. The F.B.I.’s counterintelligence division handles national security matters.

If the president had fired Mr. Comey to stop the Russia investigation, the action would have been a national security issue because it naturally would have hurt the bureau’s effort to learn how Moscow interfered in the 2016 election and whether any Americans were involved, according to James A. Baker, who served as F.B.I. general counsel until late 2017. He privately testified in October before House investigators who were examining the

“Not only would it be an issue of obstructing an investigation, but the obstruction itself would hurt our ability to figure out what the Russians had done, and that is what would be the threat to national security,” Mr. Baker said in his testimony, portions of which were read to The New York Times. Mr. Baker did not explicitly acknowledge the existence of the investigation of Mr. Trump to congressional investigators.

The cloud of the Russia investigation has hung over Mr. Trump since even before he took office, though he has long vigorously denied any illicit connection to Moscow. The obstruction inquiry, revealed by The Washington Post a few weeks after Mr. Mueller was appointed, represented a direct threat that he was unable to simply brush off as an overzealous examination of a handful of advisers. But few details have been made public about the counterintelligence aspect of the investigation.

Mr. Trump had caught the attention of F.B.I. counterintelligence agents when he called on Russia during a campaign news conference in July 2016 to hack into the emails of his opponent, Hillary Clinton. Mr. Trump had refused to criticize Russia on the campaign trail, praising President Vladimir V. Putin. And investigators had watched with alarm as the Republican Party softened its convention platform on the Ukraine crisis in a way that seemed to benefit Russia.

The DEA smashes one of Trumps main claims about the border wall

The DEA smashes one of Trump’s main claims about the border wall

written by Phillip Smith / Independent Media Institute January 9, 2019

As the president attempts to make his case for a wall on the US-Mexico border, one of his main selling points is that the wall would reduce the flow of illicit drugs into the country. But his own Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) knows better, and its 2018 National Drug Threat Assessment, released just two months ago, makes clear that at best Trump is uninformed and at worst that he is lying to the American people.

“Remember drugs. The drugs are pouring into this country. They don’t go through the ports of entry. When they do, they sometimes get caught,” Trump claimed at a Rose Garden news conference last Friday.

It’s not a new claim for the president; it has been a pillar of his claim that there is a “crisis” on the border. But repeating a false claim doesn’t make it any less false. What is true, as the DEA reports, is that the southwest border “remains the primary entry point for heroin into the United States,” but it is not being lugged across the desert via a wall-less border.

According to the DEA, “the majority of the flow is through POVs entering the United States at legal ports of entry, followed by tractor-trailers, where the heroin is co-mingled with legal goods. Body carriers represent a smaller percentage of heroin movement and they typically smuggle amounts ranging from three to six pounds taped to their torso, or in shoes and backpacks.”

To be clear, the body carriers the DEA is talking about are people coming through ports of entry—not across an open border. The agency reported that only “a small percentage of all heroin seized” along the border was seized between ports of entry.

It’s the same thing with fentanyl. According to the DEA, which says fentanyl imports are split between China and Mexico, Mexican drug traffickers “most commonly smuggle multi-kilogram loads of fentanyl concealed in POVs before trafficking the drugs through Southwest Border ports of entry.” In the San Diego sector, which saw the biggest fentanyl seizures, 74 percent of seizures were from cars at ports of entry. In the Tucson sector, which had the next highest fentanyl seizure numbers, that figure was 91 percent.

Claiming that building a border wall would reduce the flow of drugs into the country is probably not the biggest lie Trump and his allies have told about the wall, but it is patently false.

Donald Trumps moving commencement address for Wagner Colleges graduating class

of 2006 when he received his honorary doctorate.

“I’ll tell you, to me, the second-most important thing after love what you do is never, ever give up. Don’t give up. Don’t allow it to happen. If there’s a concrete wall in front of you, go through it. Go over it. Go around it. But get to the other side of that wall.”


Its all a matter of who says says it, right?

I Never Said Id Build A Concrete Wall, Trump Tells Reporter In Testy Face-Off

‘I Never Said I’d Build A Concrete’ Wall, Trump Tells Reporter In Testy Face-Off
President says CNN journalist wouldn’t understand because she’s “not into the construction business.”
By Mary Papenfuss

CNN reporter Kaitlin Collins hit President Donald Trump hard with some pointed questions about his border wall Friday and he dished out as good as he got.

Collins wanted to know why Trump needs American taxpayer dollars for a wall he has always said Mexico would pay for it. She also asked what happened to the concrete wall which he seems to be waffling about.

As Collins began her questions, Trump responded with irritation: “Oh here we go again.” Then he sarcastically said the questions were asked “so beautifully.”

He claimed again that supposed savings from the new North American Free Trade Agreement with Mexico would pay for the wall. But the agreement has not yet been ratified by Congress, nor has the White House demonstrated that any savings could begin to cover the cost. Also, mechanics for using any savings on the wall remain a mystery.

As for the concrete wall that Trump has repeatedly pushed, that’s apparently off the table — again.

“I never said, ’I’m going to build a concrete ...,” Trump insisted (he has). A steel slat fence is the way to go because “steel is stronger than concrete,” he told Collins. That’s something she wouldn’t “understand” because “I know you’re not into the construction business.”

Trump said as recently as Monday that his ideas for a “concrete wall” had not been abandoned by his administration, which contradicted what former White House chief of staff John Kelly had said in a newspaper interview.

An all concrete Wall was NEVER ABANDONED, as has been reported by the media. Some areas will be all concrete but the experts at Border Patrol prefer a Wall that is see through (thereby making it possible to see what is happening on both sides). Makes sense to me!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 31, 2018

I guess he didn't see these:

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