According to a House Intelligence Committee report in 2018, former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe stated the agents who interviewed Michael Flynn “didn’t think he was lying.” Like McCabe, former FBI director James Comey testified to Congress that Flynn did not lie to FBI agents.
After the Mueller report confirmed no collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government, in addition to no obstruction by President Trump, it’s important to remember that former FBI agent Peter Strzok interviewed Flynn. Yes, the same Peter Strzok who texted he had spoken about an “insurance policy” (referring to the Russia probe) with McCabe and told FBI lawyer Lisa Page “we’ll stop” Trump from winning the election.
Strzok also deleted references to “gross negligence” in Comey’s exoneration speech for Hillary Clinton, ensuring that she wouldn’t be indicted under 18 U.S. Code 793 (which states even gross negligence in the mishandling of classified data is a crime). Strzok was eventually fired from the Mueller probe and the FBI. McCabe and James Baker, two of the top FBI officials during both the Clinton email scandal and Russia probes, are now under criminal investigation.
Comey leaked classified memos to start the Mueller probe and the initial Russia investigation started reportedly because of gossip by Alexander Downer “during a night of heavy drinking” and a Christopher Steele dossier Clinton purchased. In addition, few people in the country realize that “Company 1” in Mueller’s indictments of Russian intel officers refers to Crowdstrike, a third-party tech firm outsourced by Clinton and the Democratic National Committee since their reportedly hacked servers were never given to the U.S. government.
Was Michael Flynn Wrongly Victimized?
If this all seems like a setup, that’s because it was. Flynn was the first victim in an unprecedented attempt at framing Donald Trump of collusion with Russia. Imagine the outrage from Democrats if Trump had purchased an unverified “dossier” that resulted in a Clinton probe, or allegations she colluded with a foreign power. Democrats and people like former CIA director John Brennan used suspicion emanating from the Steele dossier to justify investigating a possible criminal act, not an actual criminal endeavor committed by Trump.
There was never any evidence of a grandiose conspiracy to collude with Russian President Vladimir Putin, much less the existence of a specific crime linked to Trump. In terms of Flynn and his discussions with Sergey Kislyak, The Washington Post published an article in early 2017 titled “FBI reviewed Flynn’s calls with Russian ambassador but found nothing illicit” by Ellen Nakashima and Greg Miller:
The FBI in late December reviewed intercepts of communications between the Russian ambassador to the United States and retired Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn — national security adviser to then-President-elect Trump — but has not found any evidence of wrongdoing or illicit ties to the Russian government, U.S. officials said.
The calls were picked up as part of routine electronic surveillance of Russian officials and agents in the United States, which is one of the FBI’s responsibilities, according to the U.S. officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss counterintelligence operations.
Nonetheless, the fact that communications by a senior member of Trump’s national security team have been under scrutiny points up the challenge facing the intelligence community as it continues its wide-ranging probe of Russian government influence in the U.S. election and whether there was any improper back-channel contacts between Moscow and Trump associates and acquaintances.
Even before Flynn’s meeting with Strzok and another FBI agent, his calls had been intercepted by the FBI and nothing illicit was found, nor did the FBI notify Trump that his national security adviser was a possible suspect in any criminal probe.
No Lawyer Present?
As for how McCabe, Strzok and the FBI lured Flynn into a meeting, Byron York explains in The Washington Examiner that Trump’s national security adviser wasn’t even told to bring a lawyer. McCabe, who arranged the bureau’s interview with Flynn at the White House on Jan. 24, 2017—the interview that ultimately led to Flynn’s guilty plea on one count of making false statements—suggested Flynn not have a lawyer present at the session, according to newly filed court documents.
In addition, FBI officials, along with the two agents who interviewed Flynn, decided specifically not to warn him that there would be penalties for making false statements because the agents wanted to ensure that Flynn was “relaxed” during the session. Under the guise of a friendly discussion and after having already reviewed Flynn’s calls with Kislyak, FBI agent engaged in a brazen attempt at deceiving a top official of the Trump administration.
Once again, it’s important to note Flynn’s calls had already been reviewed by January 24, 2017 and Strzok and McCabe were eventually fired from the FBI. Now that we’ve learned the recent revelations of no collusion and no obstruction in the Mueller report, why, then, did the FBI need to meet with Flynn in the White House? Without legal representation? After reviewing his calls and finding no evidence of criminal behavior?
President Trump should send a message to every citizen of this country. The FBI claimed Flynn lied, after asking him questions without legal counsel and without links to a specific crime. Every aspect of the Mueller probe is tied either to Clinton, or agents like Strzok and McCabe who favored Clinton over Trump in 2016.
Flynn was framed so certain unethical officials could eventually set up Trump. The president should pardon Flynn, who never lied about Russia collusion, since the Mueller report confirmed there was no Russian collusion.