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Thursday, May 21, 2020

Susan Rice’s Email EXPOSES Team Obama’s ‘By The Book’ TREACHERY: Goodwin

Susan Rice
AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File



 Michael Goodwin

To the ObamaBots, Susan Rice’s “Dear Diary” e-mail to herself on Donald Trump’s Inauguration Day is no big deal. To which the rest of the world channels John McEnroe and shouts, “You can’t be serious!”
Oh, but the ObamaBots are serious — about protecting themselves. They’ve been caught running a spying operation on the incoming administration and now are telling the world to move along, there’s nothing to see here.
Fat chance. There’s lots and lots to see here. And having waited more than three years to see it, we are not about to let this moment pass quietly.
Potentially, we are witnessing a seminal event in the quest to expose who knew what and who did what in the illicit effort to tip the 2016 election to Hillary Clinton and, when that failed, sabotage Trump’s presidency.
The criminal probe by US Attorney John Durham likely will provide many answers and, hopefully, Attorney General Bill Barr will pursue legitimate prosecutions. But for now, the declassification of a portion of Rice’s e-mail fills in some blanks and whets the appetite for more answers.
The e-mail recounts a meeting on Jan. 5, 2017, where top officials discuss the monitoring of incoming National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s conversations with the Russian ambassador. Though FBI Director James Comey says Flynn hasn’t revealed any secrets, he worries about how often the two have spoken. President ­Obama asks if they should withhold information from Flynn. “Potentially,” Comey replies.
The beauty of the e-mail is also its puzzle. Oddly, Rice puts Obama and Vice President Joe Biden in the middle of a scam, places acting Attorney General Sally Yates at the scene and implicates J. Edgar Comey.
By doing all that, Rice inadvertently confirms that a deep state will be more loyal to the former president than the new one. Resistance, leaks and ultimately impeachment will be the poisoned fruit of that cabal.
Still, the central question about the letter has always been why. Why, on her last day at work as Obama’s national security adviser, would Rice feel the need to put down in writing what happened at an Oval Office meeting 15 days earlier?
Part of the answer has been obvious since the e-mail first surfaced more than two years ago. Three times, Rice wrote that Obama used the phrase “by the book” to describe his instructions, a clear effort to create a narrative that Obama did nothing wrong.
That view is buttressed by a belated statement from Rice’s office Wednesday that she wrote the memo at the suggestion of Obama’s White House counsel, Neil Eggleston. His job was to protect the president, which the memo aims to do.
But the move is so clumsy and ­patently obvious that it not only fails to protect the president, it actually raises more serious questions about his conduct. Remember, this is the only time where Obama is documented discussing the investigation into Flynn or any other part of the 2016 anti-Trump effort, meaning it is proof he knew about it.
That he already knew means there must have been other, earlier discussions involving him. Let’s hear about those, too. Are there more memos?
And why was Obama’s White House counsel so concerned about the need to protect him? What did Obama do that his lawyer, on the last day of his presidency, was worried about?
It’s also not clear why the section was classified until Tuesday where Rice quoted Comey as saying he had concerns about sharing intelligence information about Russia with Flynn. Given what we’ve learned in the last three years about the grand scheme of things, that section is less important than the fact that the meeting was in the Oval Office and Obama and Biden were there.
Yet perhaps we give the whole team too much credit in assuming the Rice e-mail has some grand, hidden significance. Maybe there’s nothing more to it than meets the eye. Which happens to be plenty.
Instead of examining entrails, let’s pull back the lens and get a bigger, fuller picture.
I see two things: there is a plot to target Flynn that Obama and Biden know about and approve, and there is an effort to cover up the White House role in the ginned-up probe of Trump.
There doesn’t need to be anything else. Those two elements are a damning indictment of ­Obama, Biden and everyone else involved.
Their frame of mind is easy to grasp. All the participants know their time is up and their worst nightmares are about to come true. The awesome power they have abused for their partisan purposes is being transferred to Trump, who represents everything — and everyone — they despise.
The man they conspired to destroy will soon be sitting in that very office. They never saw this day coming. They had assumed everything they did would be ­buried in a Clinton presidency.
Almost as bad, Flynn, a security hawk who was fired by Obama, is going to be in a position to find all the dirty laundry. He’ll be able to discover the crooked FBI investigation into the Trump campaign and the misleading FISA-court applications to spy on American ­citizens.
He’ll learn about the use of the Steele dossier that Clinton ­financed, and that the CIA and the State Department were involved in trying to dirty up Trump.
Comey especially had reason to worry because his fingerprints would be on everything. Up to his eyeballs in dirty tricks, he would be finished, maybe even prosecuted, if the whole truth came out.

Comey had the transcripts so he already knew that there was no criminal evidence against Flynn growing out of his conversations with the Russian ambassador, but this wasn’t about guilt or innocence. This was a fight for survival.
Flynn had to be stopped. Obama had urged Trump not to hire him, but the new president ignored the advice. If they didn’t kill Flynn, he could take them all down.
So, just four days after Trump’s inauguration, Comey sent two agents to the White House to try to trap Flynn into lying. Comey would later boast he took advantage of the helter-skelter start of the administration and did not follow the usual custom of getting approval from the White House counsel.
That alone is an unforgivable act of treachery against a sitting president.
The agents, one of whom was the odious Peter Strzok, misled Flynn about the nature of the interview, advised him not to get a lawyer and withheld the fact that they had listened to his calls with the Russian ambassador, hoping he would lie about the contents.
Thanks to a leak of classified information to The Washington Post about those calls and Yates’ intervention, Flynn soon was fired for not being straight with Vice President Mike Pence. Special counsel Robert Mueller, Comey’s friend, and his anti-Trump zealots later used the rigged interview to prosecute Flynn.
For more than three years, that kept a dangerous man quiet and out of the way.
So what if he was railroaded. It was all done “by the book,” just as Obama ordered.

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