Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the ranking member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI), fell for a spoof by Russian pranksters who promised in a call with the top House Democrat to furnish him with“kompromat”–compromising dirt–on President Donald Trump.
Schiff found the early 2017 call with the Russian pranksters, who posed as Ukrainian leaders, “productive,” one of his staffers wrote in an email to the Russians-posing-as-Ukrainians with whom he was communicating. Now, after getting caught in the media by reports in the Atlantic magazine and the U.K. Daily Mail newspaper—as well as audio of the call appearing on YouTube—a Schiff spokesperson claims the powerful Democrat congressman thought the call was “bogus” from the beginning. But that’s not what the record shows.
The notorious Russian pranksters, who the Daily Mail’s Alana Goodman notes are “comedians nicknamed ‘Vovan’ and ‘Lexus’” who have become famous for “their phony calls to high-ranking American officials and celebrities, including UN Ambassador Nikki Haley and Elton John,” posed as leading Ukrainian officials in their call to Schiff in early 2017.
“On an audio recording of the prank call posted online, Adam Schiff can be heard discussing the committee’s Russia investigation and increasingly bizarre allegations about Trump with a man who claimed to be Andriy Parubiy, the chairman of the Ukrainian Parliament,” Goodman wrote in the Daily Mail.
As Goodman noted, the call’s existence was first reported by the Atlantic’s Julia Ioffe—who noted that the call took place in early April 2017. Ioffe wrote:
On April 10, 2017, an assistant to Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, which is investigating Donald Trump’s campaign for possible collusion with the Kremlin, patched in a long-planned call from Andriy Parubiy, the speaker of the Rada, the Ukrainian parliament. Parubiy said he had some potentially explosive information about Trump’s visit to Moscow for the Miss Universe pageant in 2013.
The call, per the audio available on YouTube, begins with platitudes and introductions and Schiff thanks the man he thinks is Parubiy for his time addressing him as “Mr. Chairman.”
The man then pitches that he wants to provide materials to Schiff for his committee’s investigation on “Trump” and the “Russian government,” to which Schiff cautions him that the Russians were likely listening to the call.
“I would just caution that our Russian friends may be listening to the conversation, so I wouldn’t share anything over the phone that you don’t want them to hear,” Schiff said.
After the Russian prankster posing as the Ukrainian official said he had no concerns with what the Russians may or may not hear, he proceeded to tell Schiff about what would have been explosive allegations against the now-sitting president of the United States if they were true.
“In November 2013, Mr. Trump visited Moscow, he visited competition Miss Universe, and there he met with Russian journalist and celebrity Ksenia Sobchak,” the prankster said.
Sobchak has extensive ties to Putin, the prankster told Schiff, adding that she is “also known as a person who provides girls for escort for oligarchs. And she met with Trump and she brought him one Russian girl, celebrity Olga Buzova.” The prankster even told Schiff that Sobchak is a “special agent of Russian secret service.”
In reality, Sobchak is actually anti-Putin—an ex-Playboy model running against the Russian president on an anti-corruption platform after her time as a television anchor. But no matter to Schiff; he was entranced by the possibility of “kompromat” on Trump.
After, per the Russian pranksters posing as Ukrainian officials in their conversation with Schiff, Sobchak introduced Trump to Buzova, Buzova “got compromising materials on Trump after their short relations.”
“There were pictures of naked Trump,” the prankster said.
Schiff, per the Atlantic report, “betrayed no emotion.”
“And so Putin was made aware of the availability of the compromising material?” Schiff asked the man he thought was a Ukrainian leader.
“Yes, of course,” the prankster replied, adding that Putin told Trump “all those compromising materials will never be released if Trump will cancel all Russian sanctions.”
Adding insult to injury, the pranksters convinced Schiff that they had a recording of Sobchak and Buzov discussing this during a recent visit to Ukraine and that the Ukrainian officials would provide said recording to the FBI and the House Intelligence Committee’s Democratic minority staff.
But that’s not all. The pranksters told Schiff that Trump’s ex-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn met with Russians in Brighton Beach in Brooklyn speaking in code words. From the Atlantic piece, here is more:
He told Schiff about meetings that Trump’s former national-security adviser, Michael Flynn, had had with a Russian pop singer who served as an intermediary for the Kremlin. They’d met at a café in Brighton Beach, a Russian-immigrant enclave in Brooklyn, where, Parubiy said, “they used a special password before their meetings.” One would say, “Weather is good on Deribasovskaya.” The right response was “It rains again on Brighton Beach.”
Schiff told the men he thought were Ukrainian officials that what they had told him was “very helpful.”
“All righty. Good, this is very helpful. I appreciate it,” Schiff said. He also pushed for the release of the evidence that the pranksters invented for their stunt to the FBI and the House committee for which Schiff is ranking member.
“We will try to work with the FBI to figure out, along with your staff, how we can obtain copies,” Schiff said.
What’s more, after the call, Schiff told his staff that it was “productive” and told them to follow up with the pranksters-they-thought-were Ukrainians.
“I understand Mr. Schiff had a productive call with Mr. Parubiy, and that Mr. Parubiy would like to make some materials available to Mr. Schiff through your Embassy,” Rheanne Wirkkala of the House Intelligence Committee minority staff—Schiff’s team—wrote to the pranksters that Schiff’s team still thought were Ukrainian officials. That email was sent in the early days of April 2017.
Wirkkala is no low-level staffer. She is, per her LinkedIn page, the policy director for the Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee.
Wirkkala sent a second email during the Democrats’ correspondence with these Russian pranksters that Schiff and the Democrats on the Intelligence Committee originally thought were Ukrainian officials that further illustrates that for several days Schiff and his team thought this was real.
In the April 5, 2017, email, Wirkalla asked the men she and Schiff thought were Ukrainian officials: “do you know when we might be able to meet your colleagues at the Ukrainian embassy here in Washington, DC to pick up materials?”
Now, upon the release of this call in the Atlantic and Daily Mail, and the recording of it on YouTube, Schiff’s team is claiming he always knew it was “bogus.”
“Before agreeing to take the call, and immediately following it, the committee informed appropriate law-enforcement and security personnel of the conversation, and of our belief that it was probably bogus,” a Schiff spokesperson told the Atlantic.
In a statement to the Daily Mail, the Schiff spokesperson added more: “Obviously, it was bogus – which became even more evident during the call – but as with any investigation that is global in scale, we have to chase any number of leads, many of which turn out to be duds.”
But as the Daily Mail’s Goodman noted, Schiff’s team has “declined” to respond to the fact that Schiff’s policy director called the call “productive” and moved forward with seeking the production of the fake evidence in emails post-call with the pranksters.
“The spokesperson declined to address on the record why a staff member pursued the ‘politician’ after the call if the congressman thought it was fake,” Goodman wrote.
It remains to be seen what the fallout here is, but Schiff’s office has yet to provide any explanation for the emails and how he handled the actual call. But top Republicans are already pouncing on this demanding that he be sidelined from his role on the committee after this embarrassing development. Schiff getting removed from his committee role would have drastically negative consequences on the Democrats’ efforts to stick Trump with the Russia scandal anymore. He has been the public face of the investigation, appearing relentlessly on television and in the media to push it forward—and even fundraising off of Breitbart News articles about his actions.
We have also known that it is the obama/hilary crime syndicate that has colluded and committed treason with Russians.
Though this is one of the left being spoofed, it still shows where their heart is.
Senators Chuck Grassley and Lindsey Graham have released a heavily redacted, yet very revealing copy of their criminal referral against ex-British spy Christopher Steele, the author of the dubious dossier we now know was parlayed into a FISA warrant by Trump-hating operatives at the Justice Department.
Grassley and Graham tell us that, while working on a second dossier for Clinton opposition research firm Fusion GPS, Steele was being fed information directly from the Obama State Department and from Clinton allies as well as his usual, sketchy Russian sources. That’s right, teams Clinton and Obama were working with a foreign spy to undermine then-candidate Donald Trump.
" … Mr. Steele's memorandum states that his company received this report from (redacted), U.S. State Department, and that the report was the second in the series, and that the report was information that came from a foreign sub source who is in touch with a contact of (redacted), a friend of the Clintons who passed it to (redacted).”
The Grassley-Graham memo goes on to say “it's troubling enough that the Clinton campaign funded Mr. Steele's work, but [worse] that these Clinton associates were contemporaneously feeding Mr. Steele's allegations. It raises huge additional concerns about his credibility."
So, in addition to Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee paying $12 million for a phony, fake-news Russian propaganda dossier to influence the election, we now learn that her associates and the Obama State Department teamed up with Russian sources to funnel allegations to Steele for a second dossier.
The senators are also accusing Christopher Steele of lying either to the FBI or to the British courts.
"There is substantial evidence suggesting that Mr. Steele materially misled the FBI about a key aspect of his dossier efforts, one which bears on his credibility," they wrote.
This Grassley-Graham memo also details how Steele was using his first phony dossier to brief several mainstream media outlets, you know, the folks who bring you fake news, in the summer and the fall of 2016. British court records show Steele acknowledged he peddled his memo to The New York Times, Washington Post, Yahoo News, The New Yorker, and, of course, CNN.
However, since he was working for the FBI, he would have been barred from leaking to the media. In fact, the FBI later cut ties with him when it learned he had broken the rule. So who did he lie to, the FBI or the British courts?
It’s hard to keep all the memos and dossiers straight. If you’re scoring at home, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence released a memo over the objections of Democrats and the media that showed how the FBI used Steele’s first dossier to get a federal warrant to spy on people close to Trump. The Democrats hope to release their own “memo,” which is not a memo at all but just a sour-grapes rebuttal to the committee’s. The Grassley-Graham memo is a third document that tells us Obama and Clinton operatives fed Steele information to try to damage Trump.
The dossiers, and there are apparently two of them, were cooked up by Steele and are completely unverified claptrap. Yet, the FBI marched one of them into a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and presented it as evidence. Months later, then FBI Director James Comey admitted it was completely unverified.
And here's what the left and your corrupt media won't tell you: the FISA judge was never told that Hillary Clinton was paying for the phony dossier containing Russian intelligence lies about Donald Trump. And they don’t seem to care that it was first used to try to influence an election, then to get a warrant to spy on an opposition candidate.
The incestuous ties between Fusion, Steele, the Clinton campaign and the Obama Justice Department are alarming. Clinton hired Fusion, which hired Steele. Steele was working with the FBI at the same time. The wife of a top Justice Department official, Bruce Ohr, was hired by Fusion to work with Steele.
The goal of the whole, unseemly syndicate? To launder Russian lies about Donald Trump through the U.S. government, so they could weaponize our own intelligence and law enforcement network against the man who now sits in the Oval Office.
You should be scared. And disgusted.
I couldn't agree more. Copy and paste is a lazy way to communicate, IMO. It basically says, I can't form my own thoughts into sentences, so I'll just copy and paste someone else's.
I don't even read most of Mouse's posts for that reason, or any copy and paste posts for that matter.
I don't even read most of Mouse's posts for that reason, or any copy and paste posts for that matter.
Really, but you use cut and paste?.........ROTFLMAO!
"Most NFL players don’t stick to sports — and that’s often a good thing. During their free time, which is limited during the season, many work tirelessly to benefit their communities. NFL coverage has been focused over the past week on protests during the national anthem. Some of the reaction to that has been negative, but lost in the discussion is the positive impact players make away from the football field. So SB Nation’s team sites decided to highlight different ways teams and players give their time, money, and platform to benefit those who welcome their help.
Just this week, we saw Deshaun Watson donating his first game check to three Houstonians who work in the Texans’ cafeteria. These people lost everything to the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, and Watson stepped up selflessly.
A gesture that seems as small as Washington’s Rob Kelley and Keith Marshall buying a child an Xbox leaves a lasting impression, too — not just on that kid, but on the fans who find out about this random act of kindness. There’s so much NFL players do that they don’t seek credit for, but means the world to the people on the receiving end.
Some of our team sites chose to feature the contributions of just one player, or a specific event. Here’s just a small sampling of the good things NFL players are doing off the field.
Arizona Cardinals: Patrick Peterson is one of the NFL’s most generous players Some of the highlights of what Peterson does around the Arizona community and beyond provided by the Arizona Cardinals: Peterson created the “Foundation for Success” which ..................................Matt"
I'm just stating my opinion. You don't have to agree with me.
Not only is the format in the link usually much easier to read, the source of the material is very important to me in terms of it's potential accuracy. Certain sources I won't even bother reading as they are known to be garbage, both right and left.
I've always thought people should communicate on a public forum just like they do in person. You don't flash copied cue cards, or stupid memes, in someone's face when speaking to them in person, why do it here?
Ditto. I swear there are some people on here that copy and paste the same regurgitated story from multiple sources too. Just like warrant applications, posting multiple links to the same story from different media outlets doesn't make the story more true ;-) And the problem with the copy and dump approach is I don't have the patience to sort through 15 paragraphs to determine on my own whether any new light is being shed on a situation. Since we're in the feedback mode, a nice, succinct summary telling me how a story is different and then linking to the source is a lot more effective. YMMV.
. .. .. ..
If you don't want to read someone's post, then don't.
But don't pontificate what and how others post on any thread, unless you are Pat Lefemine.
On the other hand, when you copy and paste an entire lengthy article, you are forcing people to scroll thru that post, if they prefer not to read it. Worse yet, we've had some threads intentionally ruined by dumping regurgitated, and often off-topic material, over and over on multiple posts, just to stymie any further conversation on that thread. A forum filibuster, if you will. That tactic is incredibly childish, IMO.
Just don't read it or don't even scroll through, just go take a leap!
The BIG question is, "How the hell did Schiff get on the Intelligence committee?"
"Git off my lawn!"
I certainly hope this wasn't the worst part of your day.
Newly released text messages between FBI lovers Peter Strzok and Lisa Page saying Barack Obama wanted to “know everything” the FBI was “doing” could raise questions about the former president's 2016 statement that he was not involved in discussing pending probes.
The texts were part of a batch released by Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., along with majority staff from the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Strzok and Page, who worked for a short period of time on Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team, have been in the spotlight ever since a slew of anti-Trump messages between them surfaced last year.
In the new text message chain from Sept. 2, 2016, Page mentioned Obama in the context of a briefing for then-FBI director James Comey.
“Checkout my 9:30 mtg on the 7th,” Strzok texted Page.
“I can tell you why you’re having that meeting. It’s not what you think,” Page responded.
“TPs [talking points] for D [Comey]?” Strzok asked.
“Yes, bc potus wants to know everything we are doing,” Page said.
POTUS wants The message suggested that Obama would meet Comey regarding an FBI matter.
Yet, on April 10, 2016, Obama told Fox News’ Chris Wallace that he did not have any involvement in ongoing FBI investigations.
Tood Piro reports on the uncovered missing texts. “I do not talk to the attorney general about pending investigations. I do not talk to FBI directors about pending investigations,” Obama said on “Fox News Sunday.” “I guarantee that there is no political influence in any investigation conducted by the Justice Department, or the FBI, not just in this case, but in any case.”
FBI LOVERS' LATEST TEXT MESSAGES: OBAMA 'WANTS TO KNOW EVERYTHING'
It's unclear from the texts what exactly Strzok and Page were referring to with the apparent talking points for Comey. According to the Senate report, the text raises questions about Obama's involvement in the Clinton email investigation.
The conversation took place during an apparent lull in the Clinton email investigation, though it wasn't necessarily closed, either. In July 2016, Comey announced that Clinton was “extremely careless” in her handling of classified information on her private server but would face no charges. In late October, Comey announced that he would revisit the Clinton investigation.
The Strzok-Page conversation also occurred just days before Obama met with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the G-20 summit, where he confronted him about cyber concerns amid reports and intelligence surfacing that Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential campaign.
A former deputy assistant to Obama, Colin Kahl, highlighted on Twitter a Daily Beast reporter who floated this meeting as relevant to that text exchange.
View image on Twitter View image on Twitter Colin Kahl ? @ColinKahl On those Obama/FBI texts, this ?? https://twitter.com/lachlan/status/961228882379669505 … and https://twitter.com/lachlan/status/961231300018540545?s=17 …
11:11 AM - Feb 7, 2018 299 166 people are talking about this Twitter Ads info and privacy Also on Sept. 2, 2016, though, the FBI released a full transcript – with redactions – of its interview with Hillary Clinton as part of the email probe, along with a memo summarizing the bureau’s investigation of her use of a private email server during her tenure as secretary of state.
After the mention of “potus,” Strzok alerted Page to “NYTimes.com breaking,” which could have been the report, “FBI Papers Offer Closer Look at Hillary Clinton Email Inquiry.”
Think that ones view may be more closely related to the device being used. I use computer, tablet and phone at various times throughout the day...and interact differently depending on what I am using.
No problem or hardship to scroll past a lengthy post, but often opening a link may be a hassle... especially if the link has a lot of pop-ups.
Also a reminder: The President of the United States of America was ordered to pay a $25 million settlement to end a fraud lawsuit.
THIS HAPPENED YESTERDAY!
Depends on who's posting the link. If they post a teaser and the subject interests me, I'll usually click on the link.
When certain people post a link, even if it has no teaser, it's literally following a fire truck just to see what's going on. You know you shouldn't. You know it's either going to be nothing at all, or something you wished you hadn't seen, but the curiosity gets the best of you.
"...At the conclusion of the eight-minute phone call, Schiff said, “I'll be in touch with the FBI about this. And we'll make arrangements with your staff. I think it probably would be best to provide these materials both to our committee and to the FBI.” Really? He knew it was a prank yet he said this? Wasting the time of his committee and the FBI with nonsense?
So we are to believe the congressman and his staff had nothing better to do but continue playing along with the Russian gag? The next day a Schiff aide called Vocan and Lexus saying, “I understand Mr. Schiff had a productive call with Mr. Parubiy, and that Mr. Parubiy would like to make some material available to Mr. Schiff through your embassy.”..."
"... members of Congress and their staffs have so much free time on their hands as to be playing spy games on the taxpayer dime, they should be working for TMZ, not the American taxpayer. Or as I suspect, Schiff bought the story hook, line, and sinker. Ecstatic over his good luck in being handed oppositional dirt on a political opponent.
Rather than hanging up the phone, he was giddy over the Trump nude photos, ready to leak them to his favorite reporters across town..."
Entire piece available at link.