Posted by Curt on 31 March, 2017 at 4:19 pm. Be the first to comment!


Andrew C. McCarthy:

And exactly what would you do if you were in General Michael Flynn’s shoes?

It is not just that the long knives are out for him. The arena in which they bay for Flynn’s blood is no longer one of truth and justice but of social justice. No distinctions between partisan disagreement and crime, between intelligence and law-enforcement, between responsibly discreet investigation and political theater.

Put Flynn aside. The country in which we live has become so infected by partisan rage that federal courts are not embarrassed to invalidate a perfectly lawful executive order (restricting alien travel) on the sole ground that it was issued by Donald Trump. Had the same order, word-for-word, been issued by Barack Obama, it would have been swiftly upheld, if challenged at all. Politically “progressive” judges, however, have adopted an irrebuttable “Trump is evil” presumption. The new president’s allegedly guilty mind outweighs his every action, no matter how solidly rooted in law.

The object of the Left’s game is to nullify Trump’s presidency, whether by impeachment or withering rebuke. The best way to get there is to demonize his associates, such that they are criminals and their crimes are his crimes. On that list, it doesn’t get higher than Mike Flynn.

Long before riding the front of the Trump Train, Flynn made himself the bête noire of the intelligence community, accusing it of politicizing intelligence analyses and concealing the ineffectiveness of Obama’s approach to jihadist terror – claims which, to the great embarrassment of Obama’s spy chiefs, have been corroborated by intelligence agency operatives. Like Trump, moreover, Flynn – brash, unpolished, and erratic – has a knack for making enemies on all sides, such that Washington is now full of two kinds of people: those out to get Flynn and those who whisper that he had it coming.

Even that does not begin to describe the jeopardy Flynn had to be sensing when his lawyer reportedly offered his cooperation with investigations into Russian meddling in the U.S. presidential campaign in exchange for some form of immunity from prosecution. But it does provide a sense of the poisonous atmosphere in which, as night follows day, government officials leaked the offer to the media, spinning it as an admission of guilt – although, of what offense, no one seems able to say.

Imagine that. During the months of the Hillary Clinton email scandal, we learned that the major subjects of the investigation – involving felony mishandling of classified information and destruction of tens of thousands of government records – retained counsel and sought various forms of immunity in exchange for their cooperation. Mind you, this was under circumstances in which they knew the Justice Department was in the tank for them – so in the tank that Mills and Samuelson were permitted to appear as lawyers representing Hillary Clinton, the main subject with respect to whom they had a five-alarm conflict of interest.

No matter. When the conduct of Democrats was at issue, the media told us not to read too much into immunity requests. Standard fare to get a lawyer and seek immunity – doesn’t mean you’ve done anything wrong. Even when subjects of the Clinton investigation claimed their Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination rather than testify before Congress; even when reports surfaced of bizarre Justice Department agreements that evidence from the subjects’ computers would be destroyed rather than preserved; even when publication of the subjects’ FBI interviews detailed patently misleading statements – the media-Democrat complex steadfastly maintained there was nothing to see here.

But Mike Flynn, against whom there is no evidence of criminal wrongdoing? He is apparently a cross between Robert Hanssen and Al Capone.

Flynn lost his job as Trump’s national security advisor because he provided to Vice President Pence (among other Trump officials) an incomplete version of his conversations with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the transition. The withheld information involved sanctions imposed by Obama, and consequent Russian hopes that Trump would undo them.

It may be that Flynn, belatedly realizing that any mention of sanctions was politically explosive, was “economical” with the facts when briefing Pence. But it could instead be that there was a garble on both sides – i.e., that Flynn took Pence to be asking whether he’d made any promises to Kislyak, but Pence took Flynn’s “no” to mean the subject never came up. Whatever the explanation, Pence was mortified when his public defense of Flynn turned out to be wrong. Flynn was cashiered in short order.

We can be confident, however, that Flynn gave Kislyak no satisfaction – not that doing so would have been a crime, as opposed to a galactic political lapse. We can be confident because the FBI was monitoring Kislyak’s phone, and – although national-security eavesdropping under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) is classified – Obama officials leaked the intelligence to the New York Times, which actually is a crime. The newspaper thus reported:

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