90 Miles From Tyranny : The Never-ending Hunt for a Trump Crime

Sunday, May 2, 2021

The Never-ending Hunt for a Trump Crime

The news that federal investigators searched and seized electronic devices from the apartment and office of Rudy Giuliani, a Trump lawyer, raises so many questions and involves so much missing information that even someone as skilled a mystery writer as Patricia Cornwell might have difficulty unraveling the story. I’m not that person, unfortunately, but let me try to make some sense out of this crime story.


President Biden’s son, Hunter, had a lucrative position with a Ukrainian energy company, Burisma, and it raised suspicions that this created a conflict of interest respecting U.S. policy toward Ukraine. Suspicions about improper influence upon the Bidens by certain Ukrainian officials were heightened when Joe Biden publicly bragged that he was effective when he threatened to cut off aid to Ukraine unless the prosecutor investigating Burisma was fired. Although the FBI received Hunter’s laptop with relevant evidence, to my knowledge the FBI declined to examine it. In the course of his representation of Donald Trump, Rudy Giuliani traveled to Ukraine in December 2019, accompanied by a team from One America News. OAN produced a documentary of the trip in which it publicized the relationship between Hunter and Burisma and Joe Biden’s publicly admitted action to cover this up by getting the prosecutor fired.

Anonymous Sources Reveal Baseless Warnings to Giuliani and Senator Ron Johnson

The first account I read was in the Washington Post, where Ellen Nakashima, Shane Harris, and Tom Hamburger clearly megaphoned the FBI story in an account which suggests we are seeing the phony baloney Russian Collusion tale being repeated with the same sort of willing collusion by the press, a role long played by Nakashima.

According to this account “several current and former U.S. officials” said that FBI counterintelligence agents warned Giuliani and OAN that they were being “manipulated by the Russian government to promote its interests and that [Giuliani] appears to have brazenly disregarded such fears.”

Update: The Washington Post, New York Times, and NBC News have all issued retractions for their reporting that Giuliani was cautioned.

Halt! If the revelation had to be made anonymously “because the matter remains highly sensitive,” weren’t these people sharing this information in violation of their obligations and if so, weren’t they inherently untrustworthy? Moreover, since when do the FBI’s counterintelligence operatives determine who U.S. citizens and the press can interview? Giuliani, OAN, and Senator Ron Johnson were certainly entitled to make their own assessment of the credibility of those they interviewed and the information they provided. They were certainly entitled to probe the Ukraine connection, CI warnings notwithstanding, otherwise, as is obvious, simply warning people off on the grounds of purported national security concerns would give these agents an unfettered right to censor news and legitimate investigations. A strange claim after the Russian Collusion fiasco, in which we learned how FBI agents themselves, with the aid of foreign operators, manipulated baseless charges against Donald Trump.

Nor was there much behind the warning, according to Senator Johnson, who also received such a briefing as chair of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee who was also investigating the Hunter Biden-Burisma link. He told the Post reporters that there was “no substance” to...

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