Calamity Politics is a progressive political blog. Our intention at CP.com is to present relevant, thought provoking articles about serious political issues that are confronting our country.
More Trump Russian scandal news keeps leaking out. It appears that the GOP candidate and his inner circle are intricately enmeshed with various Russian oligarchs and the Russian government. One of the major characters in this building drama is former Senator Jeff Sessions, Trump campaign surrogate and Trump appointee to the position of the highest law official in the United States, the Attorney General.
Mr. Sessions appeared at his confirmation to have developed a sudden onset of amnesia, totally forgetting 2 separate visits he had with then Russian Ambassador, Kisylak. When those meetings were disclosed by the press, Sessions went back and changed his statements, protecting himself from possible perjury charges.
In May of 2017 the U.S. Department of Justice quietly and abruptly settled a case against Prevezon Holdings. Prevezon is a Russian firm accused of laundering an estimated $230,000,000 dollars through Manhattan real estate purchases and sales. The case was about to go to trial when DOJ made Prevezon an offer they couldn’t refuse. DOJ headed by Attorney General Jefferson Sessions felt a fine of 6,000,000 was appropriate. The six million is far less than the case was expected to settle for. Furthermore, the Russian firm was not required to make any admissions of guilt.
Way back in May, the lawyer representing the family of Pyotr Katsyv, the former Vice Governor of the Moscow region, whose son Denis owns Prevezon was an unknown Russian lady lawyer named Natalia Veselnitskaya.
In a statement at the time of the settlement announcement, Veselnitskaya said the offer by Trump’s lying Attorney General was almost “like an apology from the United States government”.
As of July 9, 2017 anyone with ears or eyes knows who Natalia Veselnitskaya is. She is the “Russian government lawyer” whose meeting at Trump Tower with Donald Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort as well as a former Russian intel officer who is now a U.S. citizen and registered lobbyist, and numerous other people, including a translator and a mysterious and rumored money laundering Russian real estate figure named Kaveladze.
This June 2016 meeting is the biggest political bombshell revelation in the quest to uncover any evidence of Trump Russia collusion in the 2016 presidential election. Hair raising information. This story is starting to burn very hot and the fire is getting closer to the Oval Office.
A group of Democrats in Congress are interested in the dealings the Trump campaign has had with the Russian government and they further are seeking information to learn if Veselnitskaya, the female attorney who came to Trump Tower a year ago described as “a Russian government lawyer” peddling dirt on Hillary Clinton, had any unethical connection with Jeff Sessions and the Trump administration that led to his decision to settle the lawsuit on terms so seemingly friendly to Prevezon.
The Prevezon case was being brought by Preet Bharara, the U.S attorney for the Southern District of New York. Mr Bharara was fired by President Trump after initially being asked to stay on post-inauguration. Bharara similar, to fired FBI Director James Comey, has stated that he was uncomfortable with personal overtures made by Donald Trump and surrogates.
The day prior to Bharara’s firing, Trump attempted to reach Mr. Bharara by phone and the prosecutor refused to speak to him or call him back, citing discomfort with Trump’s desire to ingratiate himself with a U.S. attorney.
Seventeen Democrats came together and sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions stating in part:”We write with some concern that the two events may be connected and that the DOJ may have settled the case at a loss to the United States in order to obscure underlying facts”
The lawmakers want to know if Natalia Veselnitskaya had any role in the Prevezon settlement talks, whether Sessions–who had been a Trump campaign advisor–knew of the 2016 meeting at Trump Tower, whether any Trump administration officials had contacted the DOJ about the case, and the Democratic lawmakers also asked for documents explaining the decision to abruptly settle a very strong case for a ridiculously low fine. A soft settlement that none believe the Bulldog prosecutor Bharara would ever have settled for. Suspiciously, the settlement was arranged within several weeks of Bharara’s firing.
The public rarely gets excited over dirty business dealings involving money laundering and a complex tax fraud scheme, but this “matter seems to intersect with too many key signposts of the burgeoning Trump-Russia scandal to ignore,” said Will Bunch in an article for Philly.com, which was one source used by Calamity Politics in the research for this post.
The early dishonesty by Sessions, regarding issues Russian, is a broader *”mosaic of lies” that have permeated the Trump campaign and the subsequent Trump administration regarding their contacts with Russians. The mounting number of secret contacts by Trump officials coming to light are making it increasingly difficult to believe those past and current dealings between the Trump campaign and their administration with the Russian government are honest and above board.
Sessions had by his own statement, recused himself from the Russian investigation and all things Russian. However, there is no reason to believe that the disgraced Sessions recused himself from the Prevezon settlement, and as such the Prevezon settlement and Natalia Veselnitskaya have fallen into the growing abyss of the Russian-Trump conspiracy scandal.
I’m more and more convinced that these activities with the Russians originated in dirty money transactions and probable purchases/sales at Trump properties that were designed to launder ill gotten money out of Russia. It is possible that there are salacious dossiers and ugly sex transactions by Trump, I have no problem believing that such information exists, unless of course it is boy-on-boy. That dirty scenario would put an end to Trump. But, I think it all started because of money and Trump’s need to feed his hyper-expensive life style.
Donald Trump had tried to market everything from ties, to vodka, to steaks, to his name, and most of the ventures were a failure, most notably Trump University which got him in hot water with multiple states. Several state AGs filed suit against Trump and his “scam” university. The real estate business however, was tailor made for laundering large sums of money, millions and hundreds of millions of dollars per transaction.
So, in my view this is how it went down. On one side you have an eager, not so law abiding guy who owes everybody in the world, and on the other side you have a group of foreign oligarchs bent on hiding skimmed money stolen from Russian sources. Such a perfect arrangement. An evil marriage that has after a three decade plus relationship culminated in the installation of Donald J. Trump as President of the United States.
The information is being hemorrhaged out almost hourly. It will take time but I believe that the disgusting relationship between Russia and all things Trump will be revealed. I’m not sure, but I believe that the greatest scandal in US history, involving possibly hundreds of individuals, is nothing more than a conspiracy to make more money. You can never have too much money. Right? I call it sick. When money is more important that your country, the sacredness of the vote, the near holiness of the U.S. Constitution you should be banished to that f’ing country you sold out to.
Explain to me why every American soldier serving this country doesn’t throw his gun down and demand an air line ticket home? When you don’t know who your President is working with it’s time to cut the ties that bind. I will keep writing about the Russia scandal. It’s gonna be a rough ride. Join the Resistance.