As an Army lieutenant general who used to head up the Defense Intelligence Agency and was a top intelligence adviser to Gen. Stanley McChrystal in Iraq and Afghanistan, Mike Flynn has been around the block when it comes to how the U.S. intelligence community operates.
Appointed to the DIA by then-President Obama in 2012, Flynn came into the job vowing to accelerate the agency’s transition into an entity whose analysts and spies worked more closely with field commanders and focused on emerging threats notin Afghanistan and Iraq.
In 2014 he was pushed out by Obama a year ahead of schedule after butting heads with superiors and subordinates over his “management style,” according to The Washington Post. One of those he tussled with was then-Director of National Intelligence and serial liar James Clapper, one of those who helped Obama carry out the “Spygate” operation against POTUS Donald Trump and his incoming administration. Flynn was no fan of Obama and his operatives.
Recall that Flynn was an early casualty of the Trump administration.
This all helps explain why the intelligence community that Flynn once served set him up for a fall shortly after he joined Team Trump in the fall of 2015: He had already been on the outs with those establishment types who ‘ran things;’ throwing his hat into the ring with Trump was the final straw.
And set him up, they did: As John Solomon of The Hill reported Thursday, the intelligence community all along has had exculpatory evidence clearing Flynn of any wrongdoing but has kept it secret:
- Before Flynn made his infamous December 2015 trip to Moscow — as a retired general and then-adviser to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign — he alerted his former employer, the DIA.
- He then attended a “defensive” or “protective” briefing before he ever sat alongside Vladimir Putin at the Russia Today (RT) dinner, or before he talked with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
- The briefing educated and sensitized Flynn to possible efforts by his Russian host to compromise the former high-ranking defense official and prepared him for conversations in which he could potentially extract intelligence for U.S. agencies such as the DIA.
- When Flynn returned from Moscow, he spent time briefing intelligence officials on what he learned during the Moscow contacts. Between two and nine intelligence officials attended the various meetings with Flynn about the RT event, and the information was moderately useful, about what one would expect from a public event, according to my sources.
This information was known to Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, more than a year ago. In May 2017, the Pentagon gave the Senate Judiciary Committee chairman a classified briefing which contained all of this information.
Three months later, Solomon reports, Grassley requested in an “impassioned plea” that at least some of the information be declassified — because it could be — and be made public, to help Flynn.
But the Pentagon refused, indicating that deep, dark forces were still at work to stick to Flynn but good. It wasn’t enough that Obama fired him a year early; the powers that be in the Deep State obviously had a score to settle with Flynn, and that ‘score’ likely involved the fact that a) he was rocking the boat as DIA director; and b) he signed on with Team Trump.
Solomon notes further:
Rather than a diplomatic embarrassment bordering on treason, Flynn’s conduct at the RT event provided some modest benefit to the U.S. intelligence community, something that many former military and intelligence officers continue to offer their country after retirement when they keep security clearances.
It’s important to wind back many months to where the Russia collusion narrative started and the media frenzy-driven suggestion that Flynn may have been on a mission to compromise America’s security and endanger this great republic when he visited Moscow.
Would the central character in a Russian election hijack plot actually self-disclose his trip in advance? And then sit through a briefing on how to avoid being compromised by his foreign hosts? And then come back to America and be debriefed by U.S intelligence officers about who and what he saw?
And would a prosecutor recommend little or no prison time for a former general if that former military leader truly had compromised national security?
If you wondered — still — just how far the animosity for POTUS Donald Trump runs among the Deep State Washington establishment, the fact that they would sacrifice one of their own just to sabotage a duly-elected president should help explain it.