Thursday, 18 October, 2018

Kushner back channel with Russia involved Syria

Christy Curtis | 29 May, 2017, 04:10

He returns to Washington now to find the USA capital much the same as he left it - engulfed in the latest revelations about the federal investigation into his campaign's contacts with Russian Federation and with questions about the future of his presidency still swirling.

"Just returned from Europe".

Trump, whose Marine One helicopter landed from Taormina to the soaring soundtrack of the "Air Force One" movie, emerged from two days of closed door summitry to declare his trip a success.

"It is my opinion that numerous leaks coming out of the White House are fabricated lies", Trump tweeted.

Trump returned home on Saturday from a nine-day foreign trip that provided a respite from the crisis in Washington.

"This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!" the president tweeted the day before he left, referring to a looming federal investigation into his campaign's ties to Russian Federation.

Ending frosty ties with the Vatican, he also had a "cordial" meeting with Pope Francis as they discussed cooperation on "health care, education and assistance to immigrants" with Trump focusing on "extreme terrorism threats".

The Washington Post reported on Friday that, according to Kislyak's account of the conversation as he relayed it to his bosses in Moscow, Kushner proposed the private line during a meeting either on December 1 or 2 at Trump Tower.

While US government departments do set up secure lines with foreign leaders, it is unusual for a transition team to do so, Washington Post reports.

President Donald Trump headed home Saturday to confront a growing political and legal threat, as his top aides tried to contain the fallout from reports that his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, is a focus of investigations into possible collusion between Russian Federation and the president's campaign and transition teams.

"That is indicative of espionage activity of an American citizen that is working in league with a hostile government", Nance said.

Kushner's lawyer, Jamie Gorelick, told CNN in response to the Reuters report: "Mr. Kushner participated in thousands of calls in this time period".

"If not, then there's no way he can maintain that kind of a clearance", Schiff said.

Republicans have hit back.

Aides and allies of Trump say they have come to the realization that unflattering stories about Russian Federation will be part of the daily conversation for the foreseeable future and acknowledge that the White House has been ill-equipped to handle them. But he said that in general, "We have backchannel communication with a number of countries".

When are back channels suspicious?

Not only is Kushner going with the played out "oh wait I don't remember" defense - which is painfully stupid - he's now asking journalists to do his work for him?!

"We're chasing our tails, as a nation, when it comes to the Russians". This sentiment is echoed in comments by other intelligence agency veterans, including Michael Hayden. "But just think about it this way".

In addition, the Post reports they first heard about the Kushner meeting though an "anonymous letter, which said, among other things, that Kushner had talked to Kislyak about setting up the communications channel".

The report, if confirmed, would raise new questions about the Trump team's relationship with the Russians, who U.S. intelligence agencies say tried to sway the November election in Trump's favor.

While much remained fluid Saturday, the beefed-up operation could include the return of some of Trump's more combative campaign aides, including former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who was sacked almost a year ago, and former deputy campaign manager David Bossie, who made his name in politics by investigating Bill and Hillary Clinton for two decades.

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