As many of you know, last Tuesday night, Buzzfeed released an alleged Russian intelligence report on Donald Trump. (You can access the raw intelligence report at this link) Many of the news media has indicated that they have had the report as well but had not published it as the information on it has not been substantiated. Although the report has not been vetted, nor have the allegations been substantiated, it nonetheless provides some interesting pieces of information.
As an alleged raw intelligence report, its information still needs to be substantiated by unrelated third-party documents or individuals. However, it is a good starting point in starting to pierce the secrecy that Donald Trump has veiled upon himself. I am sure that the news media outlets are working overtime in attempting to prove some, or all the allegations in it. It will take time. But, as many of you understand, where there is smoke there must be fire.
Today, I’d like to break down the 35-page report to its bare bones.
Before I do that, I need to address whether the dossier is fake news, or not.
When Wikileaks started posting leaked documents, the US government accused Julian Assange and Wikileaks of criminal activity in releasing the documents. The US government opened a criminal investigation in November 2010. Hillary Clinton was severely embarrassed by the diplomatic cables leaks. The news media used the Wikileaks documents and continue to use them on various reports. Many of the documents have been substantiated by other third-party sources.
Although I understand how the Wikileaks documents are dangerous to US and Mexican national interests, I nonetheless applauded their release and devoured the contents. They have given me a better understanding of the historical and ongoing geopolitics around the world.
Like any source, Wikileaks and others must be compared against other third-party sources to substantiate the contents. At first Wikileaks seemed only intent on exposing US secrets apolitical to anything and everything seemed like it was fair game for Assange. However, it soon became clear that Assange started releasing leaks targeting Hillary Clinton. I suspect that he did this in retaliation for Clinton’s animosity towards Assange because of the diplomatic cables release that embarrassed Hillary Clinton. Assange continues to hide inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London, afraid of being extradited to the United States.
I am disappointed at Assange’s selective document releases but I continue to review Wikileaks leaks as they become available. Each must be tempered against other sources.
This is the same with the most recent Donald Trump dossier leak, the contents must be verified against other unrelated sources.
Many of us routinely complain about the news media filtering our news content based on their own self-interests. I routinely hear comments about news media bias. With this in mind, I devour original source materials whenever I can get my hands on them because it gives me an opportunity to look at the information unvarnished by the inherent biases of reporters.
Even then, to truly understand any information, the context, especially the motives behind the information peddler must be understood and weighed against other sources. People do not tell stories or share information without some sort of recompense in return. Government intelligence documents must also be weighed against various factors, such as national self-interests, or politics or just simply an underling’s need to move up the chain of command. These factors influence the tone and the type of information that is being shared.
Nonetheless original source documents are a gold mine of information and the starting point from where an investigation can begin.
Understanding this we can now look at the allegations alleged by the document.
The following is a summary of the January 10, 2017 Intelligence Report on Russian/Trump interludes as summarized by the author.
(please note that some of the following content may be inappropriate or disturbing to some readers)
1. Per the leaked document, the Russian government has been “cultivating and supporting” Donald Trump since at least 2011. Vladimir Putin is alleged to be directly involved in the Russian intelligence operation involving Trump. (report: 2016/080 June 20, 2016)
2. The aim of the Russian Trump operation is to “sow discord and disunity” within the US but “more specifically” against the Transatlantic alliance, the leaked report asserts. (report: 2016/080 June 20, 2016)
3. Putin’s ideology, per the document, is to “return to Nineteenth Century ‘Great Power’ politics”. Meaning that Putin would like to return to Pre-World War II adversarial geopolitics between nations. (report: 2016/080 June 20, 2016)
4. The Russians have been “feeding TRUMP and his team valuable intelligence” about his presidential campaign opponents, including Hillary Clinton, for “several years”, according to the leaked document. (report: 2016/080 June 20, 2016)
5. Donald Trump has personal sexual perversion obsessions the document alleges. Per the dossier, Donald Trump hired numerous prostitutes in 2013 to perform “golden showers” on him on the hotel bed that the Obama’s had previously occupied. (report: 2016/080 June 20, 2016)
6. Per the document, the Russian government has “embarrassing material” on Donald Trump with which to blackmail him with. (report: 2016/080 June 20, 2016)
7. Paul Mannafort and Carter Page acted as go-betweens between the Russian government and Donald Trump’s campaign, alleges the leaked report. (report: 2016/095, undated)
8. The leaked document alleges that Russian intelligence was behind the DNC email leaks via Wikileaks. (report: 2016/095, undated)
9. Per the dossier, Donald Trump accepted the Russian help, during his presidential campaign, in return for raising “US/NATO defence commitments in the Baltics and Eastern Europe to deflect attention away from Ukraine”. (report: 2016/095, undated)
10. Per the leaked document, Trump allegedly has substantial financial interests in China and other emerging markets. Large Trump payments of “bribes and kickbacks” are alleged by the document. (report: 2016/095, undated)
11. Trump’s team, through Carter Page, discussed “future bilateral energy cooperation” and the existence of compromising Russian dossiers on Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, the report further alleges. (report: 2016/094 July, 2016)
12. The leaked dossier also alleges that Donald Trump was supplying the Russians with business activities and intelligence on Russian oligarchs and their families. Per the document, “TRUMP and his associates duly had obtained and supplied the Kremlin” with the information. (report: 2016/097 July 30, 2016)
13. The document alleges that the Russian government, although having an extensive file about Donald Trump, had promised not to release it because of how “helpful and co-operative his team had been over several years.” (report: 2016/097 July 30, 2016)
14. The leaked dossier alleges that Sergei Ivanov, Head of Presidential Administration expressed fear in the Russian operation. Ivanov expressed that presidential spokesman, Dmitriy Peskov, “had gone too far” interfering in the US presidential race. Dmitriy Medvedev, the Russian prime minister, wanted to keep a good working relationship with the US. (report: 2016/100 August 5, 2016)
15. Per the document, Ivanov “said that the audience to be targeted by such operations (document leaks) was the educated youth in America as the PA assessed that there was still a chance they could be persuaded to vote for Republican candidate Donald Trump as a protest against the Washington establishment. (report: 2016/101 August 10, 2016)
16. The leaked document alleges that Lyndon LaRouche, Jill Stein, Trump foreign policy advisor, Carter Page, and former DIA Director Michael Flynn, were indirectly funded by the Russian government for recent trips to Russia. (report: 2016/101 August 19, 2016)
17. The Russian document alleges that the aim of releasing DNC documents via Wikileaks during the DNC convention was to swing Bernie Sanders supporters away from Hillary Clinton towards Trump. “These voters were perceived as activists and anti-status quo and anti-establishment and in that regard sharing many features” with the Donald Trump campaign. (report: 2016/102 August 10, 2016)
18. The document alleges that Trump lawyer, Michael Cohen held a secret meeting with Kremlin officials in August 2016, in Prague. Rossotrudnichestov was used as a cover for the alleged meeting. [Note: on January 10, 2017, Michael Cohen posted a picture of the cover of a US passport with the caption: “I have never been to Prague in my life. #fakenews” In addition, several news outlets have reported that Cohen was in California during the alleged meeting.] (report: 2016/136 October 20, 2016)
19. The leaked report further alleges that the meeting may have been held in a European Union country. (report: 2016/136 October 20, 2016)
20. The leaked document alleges that Paul Mannafort was allegedly receiving “kickbacks” from the Ukraine via ex-president Yanukovych. The Russians were concerned that Mannafort’s close ties to the Ukraine and the alleged kickbacks would come back to haunt them. Mannafort was released by the Donald Trump campaign, in part, because of his close-ties to the Ukraine corruption scandals. The Corey Lewandowski hatred of Mannafort was Trump’s official position for the release of Mannafort. (report: 2016/105 August 22, 2016)
21. The Russian government had growing concerns that the Trump operation would be exposed and that there would be “blowback” on the Russians. (report: 2016/111 September 14, 2016)
22. The Trump/Russian leaked document alleges that Donald Trump visited St. Petersburg numerous times and had “paid bribes” through “affiliated companies.” The document further alleges that Trump “participated is sex parties” in St. Petersburg. (report: 2016/113 September 14, 2016)
23. The document alleges that Carter Page met with Igor Sechin in Moscow in July 2016. Either on the seventh or eight of the month. [Note: Both The New York Times and The Telegraph have news reports from that period (July 2016) showing Carter Page delivering a speech in Moscow during this time frame.] (report: 2016/134 October 18, 2016)
24. Allegedly, per the document, Cater Page told Russian officials that Donald Trump would lift “sanctions on Russia” when elected president. (report: 2016/134 October 18, 2016)
25. The document also alleges that Michael Cohen played a key role in the secret Page Moscow meeting. (report: 2016/134 October 18, 2016)
26. The leaked dossier alleges that Michael Cohen became the go to individual between the Russians and Trump following the departure of Paul Mannafort in August 2016. (report: 2016/135 October 19, 2016)
27. As per the document, Cohen took up damage control of the Russian-Trump relationship. Cohen allegedly met with Russian officials in August 2016 to contain the fallout of the relationship. (report: 2016/135 October 19, 2016)
28. The document alleges that Michael Cohen’s meeting in Prague (see above note detailing proof that Cohen had not been at the alleged meeting) was accompanied by three individuals to the Prague meeting. The meeting date was updated to either “last week of August” or “first week of September”. (report: 2016/166 December 13, 2016)
29. The document further alleges that “deniable cash payments were to be made to hackers who had worked in Europe under Kremlin direction against” the Clinton campaign. (report: 2016/166 December 13, 2016)
30. The document also alleges that between March and September of 2016, “a company called XBT/Webzilla and its affiliates had been using botnets and porn traffic to transmit viruses, plant bugs, steal data and conduct ‘altering operations’ against the Democratic Party leadership.” Aleksei Gubarov and Seva Kapsugovichwas alleged to have been involved. (report: 2016/166 December 13, 2016)
31. The document alleges that plans were put in place for the hackers and operatives to “go to ground” and that payments be made “promptly” should Hillary Clinton win the election to protect the operation against reprisals. (report: 2016/166 December 13, 2016)
Now that we have broad strokes of the document, it is time to attempt to verify the information against other sources to determine the veracity of any of the allegations. In the coming weeks, I’ll take each piece of information and attempt to corroborate it against unrelated public sources.