Note: I am only leaving this up as a reminder of how far I’ve grown.
One of the more fascinating elements of the Mueller Special Council has been Mueller’s original referral of Tony Podesta, Greg Craig, and Vin Weber to the SDNY. This story first broke in August 2018 and it showed that they were originally referred back in early spring 2018. This highlights how tight lipped the Mueller SC is/was and how Mueller’s scope goes beyond the narrative of hunting only Trump and his allies. This referral had me rethinking the Mueller SC’s purpose and who the actual targets were.
While you can trace Mueller’s appointment back to Trump’s DAG Rod Rosenstein, among right wingers, Mueller was out to “protect the swamp” and “take out Trump.” This narrative was echoed by practically everyone on the right and Mueller trying to take Trump out was a belief held by almost anyone paying attention. This originally got me thinking, if 99% of Americans agree on something politically, chances are this is a charade. When do the left and right ever agree on anything? Now as the details of the Mueller report come out via Barr, it is looking like Trump is being cleared of Russia Collusion by the man he indirectly appointed. I had been echoing this statement since August 2018 thanks to the likes of Craig and Podesta because if Mueller was really protecting the swamp, why refer them?
On April 10, 2019, after almost a year since the case was first referred to the SDNY, Craig issued a statement about his upcoming indictment. On April 11, 2019 the indictment was unsealed the same day that Julian Assange was arrested out of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. In the interest of full transparency, Craig’s case was initially dropped from the SDNY due to a statute of limitation expiration, but was then picked up in the DC circuit where it was prosecuted. This has led to some on the left calling it a witch hunt.
According to the indictment, Craig had lied about a potential FARA registration in 2014. The Obama DOJ had not pursued the case because of Craig’s statements. Craig denies the claims, but earlier this year, Skadden Arps had agreed to pay 4.6 Million for the non-filing and registered under FARA. Craig was a partner at Skadden Arps, but resigned after Alexander van der Zwaan was indicted by the Mueller SC. A breakdown of Craig’s indictment can be found here. As a bonus, graphs for the flow of money can be seen below thanks to twitter user @JarradKushner.
Greg Craig was Obama’s former White House Counsel from January 20, 2009 – January 3, 2010. This is where most news organizations and people are leaving the connection, but upon reading the indictment, a stronger one can be made.
To sum up the indictment quickly, Craig was involved in the fabrication of a report to ease the western criticism of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko being prosecuted for abuse of power. The report was to show how the prosecution was done fairly. Later in the indictment, as shown below, the report had made it’s way to the US press through Reporter-1. Using the quotes, you can figure out that the reporter is David E. Sanger of the New York Times and this is the article referenced.
David Sanger is an interesting connection because he is the tie that binds everything together. To start things off, Sanger wrote a book based on leaks provided by General James Cartwright about Stuxnet. Stuxnet was a computer virus that was used by the US and Israel against Iranian Nuclear Facilities. This leak harmed US National Security interests. To make things more ironic, the man who hired Mueller for the SC, Rod Rosenstein, is the man who prosecuted Cartwright for the leak. Who represented Cartwright? Greg Craig.
Moving along, there was another National Security leak that Sanger was involved in. When Julian Assange’s indictment stemming from charges in 2010 finally became unsealed, he was revealed to have assisted then Bradley Manning (now Chelsea) in an attempt to hack into a US Government computer. Bradley had given Assange half the password, but the indictment ends with Assange saying that he had no luck in cracking it. Chelsea had leaked over 750k confidential and sensitive files to Wikileaks in the meantime which harmed US National Security and complicated overseas operations. Wikileaks then worked with three publications in publishing the material. One of the publications was the New York Times which is where Sanger was authoring the content.
Craig was believed to have been pushed out of the White House for slow rolling the plans to close down Guantanamo Bay prison camp. Rahm Emanuel, the person who is believed to be the one behind the leaks that pushed Craig out of the White House had also said that he believed, “Craig was focusing on building his own mini National Security Council.” The banning of torture and closing of Guantanamo Bay were two executive orders drafted by Craig during his tenure in the White House. Coincidentally, some of the files leaked by Chelsea Manning were about Guantanamo Bay and the abuse of some of the prisoners.
To make things even more interesting, in his last days in office Obama had pardoned both Manning and Cartwright.
Maybe it is time that we acknowledge that there is more that meets the eye when it comes to the Curious Case of Greg Craig?