Trump fully briefed on Flynn’s calls with Russian ambassador

Donald trumps problems with media reports deteriorate as even Fox News slams him and raises serious issues about Michael Flynns contact with Russia.


And Fox News: Trump fully briefed on Flynn’s calls with Russian ambassador, source says

President Trump was given a comprehensive summary of the contents of his former-national security adviser Michael Flynn’s phone calls with the Russian ambassador prior to Flynn’s resignation, a source told Fox News.

Trump did not see the actual transcript of the communications, but the summary was delivered by people outside the White House. Trump has maintained that he believes Flynn did nothing wrong.

“Mike was doing his job,” Trump said at a news conference Thursday. “He was calling countries and his counterparts … I would have directed him to do it if I thought he wasn’t doing it. I didn’t direct him, but I would have directed him because that’s his job.”

Flynn was forced to resign Monday over discussions he had with Russian officials before Trump took office.

Flynn denied in an FBI interview last month that he had discussed U.S. sanctions against Russia with Moscow’s ambassador to the United States, contradicting transcripts of intercepted communications between the two men, the Washington Post reported Thursday.

And someone asked by trump to replace Flynn has turned down the position for ‘personal reasons’.

Fox News: Harward turns down Trump’s national security adviser offer, sources say

President Trump’s first choice to succeed the departed Michael Flynn as national security adviser has turned the job down due to family reasons, sources close to the situation told Fox News late Thursday.

One source told Fox that retired Navy Vice Admiral Robert Harward “really wanted” to do the job, but ultimately decided that he could not.

A senior administration official said that Harward’s acceptance of the national security adviser post was contingent on the agreement of his family. The official said Harward’s wife and other family members wanted him to remain in the private sector.

I’m not surprised his family didn’t want him involved.

The ones achieving the most in the Trump administration are ‘sources’.

Flynn resignation

It seems that lying to the American people is fine but lying to the President of Vice President crosses a line.

Gordon Campbell:  Out like Flynn

So Trump’s national security advisor Michael Flynn – the guy who had the cosiest links to Putin’s Russia – has been asked by Trump to resign, under pressure on all sides for lying to (a) the American people and (b) his boss. Only the latter is a sackable offence in Washington, and we can safely assume that Trump’s new Attorney-General Jeff Sessions won’t be prosecuting Flynn for committing a criminal offence under the Logan Act.

Presumably, not prosecuting Flynn will be the quid pro quo for Flynn keeping his mouth shut about whether he’d been merely acting under orders from Trump, when Flynn made contact with the Russian ambassador to re-assure Putin that the US sanctions on Russia would be lifted once the new administration had settled into the White House.

RealClear Politics: National Security Council

I haven’t been following things in the US but even the headlines sound not very flash.

Blomberg: The Political Assassination of Michael Flynn

If we are to believe the Trump White House, National Security Adviser Michael Flynn just resigned because he lied about his conversations with Russia’s ambassador to the vice president. As White House senior counselor Kellyanne Conway told NBC’s “Today Show” on Tuesday: “Misleading the vice president really was the key here.”

That sounds about as credible as when the president told CIA employees that the media had invented the story about his enmity toward the spy agency, not even two weeks after he had taken to Twitter to compare the CIA to Nazis. It’s about as credible as President Donald Trump’s insistence that it didn’t rain during his inauguration. Or that millions of people had voted illegally in the election he just won.

The point here is that for a White House that has such a casual and opportunistic relationship with the truth, it’s strange that Flynn’s “lie” to Pence would get him fired. It doesn’t add up.

In the end, it was Trump’s decision to cut Flynn loose. In doing this he caved in to his political and bureaucratic opposition. Nunes told me Monday night that this will not end well. “First it’s Flynn, next it will be Kellyanne Conway, then it will be Steve Bannon, then it will be Reince Priebus,” he said. Put another way, Flynn is only the appetizer. Trump is the entree.

The Trump train wreck continues.