Throughout my time analyzing SpyGate, there have been several outside elements that seemed to be related, but never truly fit into the SpyGate picture. From what seems like 2012 on, there are several occurrences that sort of fit into the same mold as the 2016 election interference, but not exactly. With publicly available information, it is hard to read every single piece of news and piece together the entire story. I try to look at this like a puzzle and all the smaller elements are the pieces. The hard part is that as a citizen, I don’t have the cover of the puzzle box to tell me the puzzle that I am building or how many pieces are in this puzzle.
The way I have approached this issue in the past is by trying to find out where the narratives don’t really make much sense and try working from there. Both the media on the left and right gas light in their own ways which makes the puzzle more complicated. We don’t have access to classified data, we don’t have access to transaction data, and we don’t have the ability to question people. We only have a vast network of information that has to be looked at with a grain of salt and compared to the hard actions that have transpired in order to help verify the claims. There is one statement that holds true and that statement is Follow the Money.
Last week, a Julia Ioffe article was pointed out to me and it was one of the more rational accounts of the events that transpired that I have read as of yet. I try not to base my analysis by who is telling the story, but by how well they explain the actions that transpire. The article itself is a good read and Ioffe herself was involved in the Trump-Russia pre-election framework as she wrote an article on Carter Page for Politco on September 23, 2016. This was the same day as the Isikoff article. The most remembered bit from from the Carter Page piece can be seen below.
Getting back to the first Ioffe article mentioned, she attributes the Russian Election Interference of the ‘hack’ of the DNC, DCCC, and Podesta Emails as an emotional response to the release of the Panama Papers. The Panama Papers stemmed from the hack of Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca and released in the spring of 2016 by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. The documents which were hacked from the law firm revealed a wide range of world-wide money laundering operations that resulted in prosecutions, investigations, and the stepping down of world leaders.
The hack of Mossack Foneseca was attributed to a WordPress exploit as the firm was using an outdated version. In short, they connected their email server to their web based server which allowed for the WordPress hack to gain the emails as well. With the hacking spree that was going on from 2012 on, you would expect a global money laundering operation to be using proper cyber security measures, but these lacks of oversight help the regular people in the long run so I am not complaining. What is interesting though is after The Hacking Team, an Italian based company, was hacked, it was revealed that they had sold hacking equipment to the former Panama President Ricardo Martinelli. The spying equipment, along with the equipment sold to them by the Israeli based NSO Group, went missing when Martinelli left office.
Recently, in my post Connecting More Dots, I highlighted a lot of the cross connections between The Hacking Team to the US based CyberPoint. Former NSA Hackers would go to CyberPoint and then work in the UAE under Project Raven to spy. Hillary Clinton had given CyberPoint an export licence, but were later caught working with The Hacking Team selling hacking equipment to the UAE. This led me to start wondering if Project Raven was a way to get around America’s Fourth Amendment rights, but that is only speculation at this point. There is a large Middle East portion of SpyGate that revolves around General Flynn which is largely left unexplained by not only the media, but in the Mueller Report. The UAE President Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan was one of the people who was named in the papers as well.
Russia had blamed the US as the driving force behind the Panama Papers which apparently led to their bold decision to interfere. Looking over the events, this was not an isolated incident. In the Ioffe article, she several instances of the US State Department interfering with governments as stepping stones for the decision to pull the trigger. In 2011, we had the US supported Egyptian protests and the overthrowing of Libyan Dictator Muammar Qaddafi. In 2013, the US State Department supported the Maiden Coup in Ukraine which led to the annexation of Crimea. These actions led for Russia to take a stand against the US by propping up Bashar al-Assad in Syria. This is not to defend Russia’s actions, but to merely put us in the state of mind on why they would want to interfere in the US 2016 Election.
What the article fails to cite, is the Russian response to the Magnitsky Act being enacted into law in 2012. The law again involves the US State Department as Jonathan Winer was the architect behind the act. I had written about the Act before, but connecting it fully to Spygate was always a tough task as we only had loose links between the Prevezon Case which led to the Trump Tower meeting, the sanctions imposed from the Obama Administration, and the connections to the US State Department/Christopher Steele through Jonathan Winer. Luckily for myself, I highlight a lot of these connections in A Breakdown of the Grassley Op-Ed.
What is crazy is Sergei Magnitsky was investigating a missing $230 Million from Bill Browder’s company Hermatige Capital. Magnitsky was then jailed in Russia after it was claimed that he hid the money himself and was later killed in prison. His death was then used to make him a martyr after Browder was able to lobby support with US Senators John McCain and Ben Cardin. From the German Newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung which received the leak, the money was revealed to be part of the Panama Papers drop. While I was trying to figure out how the Magnitsky Act related to SpyGate, there is a clear connection to the Panama Papers.
Another key area of focus that became clearer as I started to use the Panama Papers as the main driving factor for the events that transpired in the 2016 election was the Washington Free Beacon hiring Fusion GPS in the fall of 2015. The focus was to research the Republican Candidates. Billionaire Paul Singer largely funds the WFB and was in support of Marco Rubio at the time. Fusion GPS was also working on behalf of Prevezon at the time as well which was going after Bill Browder for the Magnitsky Act. In Glenn Simpson’s House testimony. Between pages 38 and 52 Simpson talks about Browder, Browder’s money laundering leading up to the arrest of Magnitsky, and how Browder himself is virtue signaling the Panama Papers even though Browder is named in the papers. Singer also has a connection to the Panama Papers. He was currently seize Argentinian assets to help pay back the loans. Luckily for Singer, Argentina had set up 123 shell companies in Nevada. Singer has been looking at the Panama Papers and coincidentally, his research into the Republican candidates ended roughly the same time as the Panama Papers dropped. The WFB has denied that any of their Fusion GPS related work was used in the creation of the Trump-Russia Dossier.
This post is getting long, so I am going to use this section for some quick hit connections and maybe crowd sourcing will make some more that I missed. To start it off, the Panama Papers involved many of the same people who were wrapped up during the FIFA investigation. Christopher Steele worked on the FIFA investigation. In emails gathered by Judicial Watch, Bruce Ohr was invited to the Hudson Institutes ‘Kleptocracy Archive‘ which was sponsored by the Hudson Institute (which is where George Papadopoulos worked) and launched in response to the Panama Papers. Bruce and his wife Nellie are also connected via their Kleptocracy Investigation. This was found when Jason Leopold FOIA communications about Putin’s ‘media czar’ Mikhail Lesin, who was also wrapped up in the Panama Papers. Christopher Steele also wrote a report saying that he was murdered. To top things off, I had been trying for a while to connect the Buryakov Case to SpyGate, but the only link we had was Carter Page working as an informant by bugging binders. What I was able to find when cross referencing the Buryakov Case to the Panama Papers was that Russian State Owned Bank VEB was caught up in the Panama Papers. Buryakov was a VEB employee working in the US.
So what about Donald J. Trump? He also was named in the Panama Papers a whopping 3,450 times. This must have been a gold mine for anyone looking to conduct opposition research on him. Unfortunately for them, Trump sells his name as a brand and the entities listed had no direct connection to Trump. This could explain why the Steele Dossier was needed to fabricate claims against the future president.
With the Paradise Papers being released after the Panama Papers in 2017 and the Swiss Leaks and LuxLeaks happening before the Panama Papers, there is a larger operation that is rounding up all the money laundering networks around the world. While we were looking at the Russian Election interference as a personal attack against Obama, Clinton, and the DNC, perhaps it is much larger than that. After all, the Special Counsel’s secret case was started before and is still ongoing after the Special Counsel concluded.
Things seem to be connecting better using the Panama Papers as the driving force for all of the events we have been witnessing before, during, and after the Panama Papers were released in Spring 2016.