General Michael Flynn still awaits sentencing. Meanwhile his new lawyer, Sidney Powell, is tormenting the prosecutors and the FBI, uncovering corruption in the FBI and the Department of Justice that, she credibly alleges, included the framing of General Flynn.
Is that too strong? I don’t think so. Yesterday Powell filed a reply brief in support of her motion to compel the production of more exculpating material by the prosecution, and to hold the prosecutors in contempt of court. Her recitation, which relies in part on text messages that I take it have come to light recently, makes a compelling case of FBI and prosecutorial misconduct. The reply brief is embedded below; I encourage you to read it in its entirety.
Powell’s most explosive charge is that the FBI falsified the Form 302 that recorded the content of its agents’ interview with Flynn in order to set him up for prosecution:
On February 10, 2017, the news broke—attributed to “senior intelligence officials”—that Mr. Flynn had discussed sanctions with Ambassador Kislyak, contrary to what Vice President Pence had said on television previously. Overnight, the most important substantive changes were made to the Flynn 302. Those changes added an unequivocal statement that “FLYNN stated he did not”—in response to whether Mr. Flynn had asked Kislyak to vote in a certain manner or slow down the UN vote. This is a deceptive manipulation because, as the notes of the agents show, Mr. Flynn was not even sure he had spoken to Russia/Kislyak on this issue. He had talked to dozens of countries. Exs. 9, 10, 11.
Second, they added: “or if KISLYAK described any Russian response to a request by FLYNN.” That question and answer do not appear in the notes, yet it was made into a criminal offense. The typed version of the highly unusual “deliberative” 302 by that date already included an entire section from whole cloth that also serves as a criminal charge in the Information and purported factual basis regarding “Russia’s response” to any request by Flynn. The draft also shows that the agents moved a sentence to make it seem to be an answer to a question it was not.
If this is correct, the criminal complaint against Flynn should indeed be dismissed, and various people now or formerly at the FBI should face criminal prosecution.
Many of the juicy tidbits come from texts between Peter Strzok and his illicit lover, Andrew McCabe’s Special Counsel Lisa Page. These texts have dribbled out over a considerable period of time, and I take it that at least some of the ones quoted here are new. For example:
As news of the “salacious and unverified” allegations of the “Steele dossier” dominated the media, Strzok wrote to Page: “Sitting with Bill watching CNN. A TON more out. . . We’re discussing whether, now that this is out, we can use it as a pretext to go interview some people.”
So Hillary Clinton’s fictitious campaign “dossier” was explicitly viewed by the FBI as a “pretext to go interview some people.” Including General Flynn, apparently. The rot at Obama’s FBI went very deep.
In the next two weeks, there were “many meetings” between Strzok and McCabe to discuss “whether to interview  National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and if so, what interview strategies to use.” Ex. 5.
January 23, the day before the interview, the upper echelon of the FBI met to orchestrate it all. Deputy Director McCabe, General Counsel James Baker, [redacted], Lisa Page, Strzok, David Bowdich, Trish Anderson, and Jen Boone strategized to talk with Mr. Flynn in such a way as to keep from alerting him from understanding that he was being interviewed in a criminal investigation of which he was the target. Ex.12. Knowing they had no basis for an investigation,6 they deliberately decided not to notify DOJ for fear DOJ officials would follow protocol and notify White House Counsel. They decided not to tell Flynn their true purpose nor give him 1001 warnings, so as to keep him “relaxed.” They planned not to show him the transcript of his calls to refresh his recollection, nor confront him directly if he did not remember. In short, they planned to deceive him about the entire scenario, and keep him “unguarded.”
One must ask, what was the point? The FBI had recordings of Flynn’s conversations with the Russian ambassador, and there was nothing wrong with them. So what, exactly, were they strategizing? How to ensnare Flynn in a process crime by inducing him to say something that was false, evidently. Then, to their surprise, Flynn didn’t lie, as the agents recorded at the time. So, Flynn’s lawyer now says, they altered the Form 302 to make it appear that he did. If correct, this is just about the worst law enforcement scandal imaginable.
The agents returned from interviewing Mr. Flynn, describing their excitement over it, and with a belief contrary to what they expected, that he had been honest with them. After the interview, they briefed it three times. Strzok texted Page: “Describe the feeling, nervousness, excitement knowing we had just heard him denying it all. Knowing we’d have to pivot into asking. Puzzle round and round about it. Talk about the funny details. Remember what I said that made Andy [McCabe] laugh and ask if he really said that.”
Strzok urged: “Also have some faith in [redacted] and my assessment. . . . I’m finding it hard to go out on a counterintuitive yet strongly felt ledge with so many competent voices expressing what I feel too: bullsh*t – that doesn’t make sense.  I made some joke about what F[lynn] said. Something patriotic or military.”
The agents did three briefings the day of the interview. They reported he had a sure demeanor, and he was telling the truth or believed he was—even though he did not remember it all. Ex. 6.
Then they tried to send him to jail for lying to them.
The anti-Trump FBI and Department of Justice had a “media leak strategy”:
April 20, 2017, Strzok texts Page: “I had literally just gone to find this phone to tell you I want to talk to you about media leak strategy with DOJ before you go.” Ex. 2.
The FBI’s jihad against Trump accelerated with the firing of James Comey:
On May 9, 2017, the day Comey was fired, Strzok texted: “We need to open the case we’ve been waiting on now while Andy [McCabe] is acting [Attorney General].” Ex. 2.
On May 10, McCabe opened the “obstruction” investigation of President Trump as suggested by Comey’s memo of February 14. Ex. 1.
Also on May 10, in an important but still wrongly redacted text, Strzok says: “We need to lock in [redacted]. In a formal chargeable way. Soon.” Page replies: “I agree. I’ve been pushing and I’ll reemphasize with Bill [Priestap].” Ex. 2. Both from the space of the redaction, its timing, and other events, the defense strongly suspects the redacted name is Flynn.
The Flynn prosecution has lifted the lid on corruption at the Department of Justice and the FBI that few could have imagined. The anti-Trump FBI conducted itself in a way we might associate with a totalitarian state, not the United States of America. For the most part, the people involved have been fired in disgrace. I am no expert in criminal law, but it seems that some of what happened here–for example, the falsification of the Form 302–must be a crime. If crimes were committed, they should be prosecuted. The prosecution of General Flynn should be dismissed, and those involved in it should be, if not prosecuted, censured.
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