Retired CIA operative and CNN counterterrorism analyst Phil Mudd talks about British national Christopher Steele, author of the infamous Steele dossier, deciding to talk with U.S. officials about his part in the Trump-Russia investigation.
Mudd predicts things are going to get „ugly“ when Attorney General Bill Barr concludes how the probe was initiated which will give the Trump White House „ammo.“
A source close to Steele told The Times he will meet with investigators in London in the coming weeks. Republicans have long alleged it was Steele’s dossier that improperly led to an FBI inquiry, which ultimately morphed into special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible coordination between the Trump and campaign and Russia during the 2016 election.
– The former British intelligence officer authored what became known as the golden showers dossier
– Congressional investigators sought to interview him without success
– He will meet with unidentified U.S. investigators, a source close to him told the Times of London
– Attorney General Bill Barr ordered a new investigation of the origins of the Russia probe
– The Mueller report did not confirm salacious claims from the dossier
– The report did include a footnote about a Georgian businessman who told Michael Cohen he had ’stopped flow‘ of ’some tapes‘
„This approach threatens national security by subverting longstanding rules and practices that obligate you and other heads of [intelligence community] agencies to safeguard sources and methods and prevent the politicization of intelligence and law enforcement,“ Schiff wrote in the letter to Coats, which was also sent to the heads of the CIA, NSA and FBI.
Attorney General William Barr said he’s not satisfied so far with official accounts justifying the counterintelligence investigation into whether Donald Trump’s presidential campaign was involved in Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.
“These counterintelligence activities that were directed at the Trump campaign, were not done in the normal course and not through the normal procedures as a far as I can tell,” Barr told “CBS This Morning” in an interview broadcast Friday.
Last month, Barr announced he had assembled a team to review the FBI’s original Russia probe which was opened in the summer of 2016. Barr appointed U.S. Attorney from Connecticut John Durham to lead the investigation which will focus on the use of FBI informants as well as alleged improper issuance of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants.
But Barr, in an interview with CBS News that aired Friday, said he has more questions than answers at this point in the probe.
Key allies who share intelligence with the United States could soon be dragged into the middle of Attorney General Bill Barr’s politically-charged Justice Department review of how the Russia investigation began.
President Donald Trump has said he wants Barr to look into the role key intelligence partners, including the United Kingdom and Australia, played in the origins of Russia probe.
The move marked an escalation in Trump’s efforts to „investigate the investigators,“ as he continues to try to undermine the findings of special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe amid mounting Democratic calls to bring impeachment proceedings against Trump.
President Trump has granted Attorney General William P. Barr “full and complete authority” to declassify government secrets, issuing a memorandum late Thursday that orders U.S. intelligence agencies to cooperate promptly with Barr’s audit of the investigation into Russia’s election interference in 2016.
The declassification of documents applies to the Department of State, Treasury, Defense, Energy, Homeland Security, CIA and the Director of National Intelligence.
Mr Steele first approached British intelligence at the £1.7million home of Sir Charles Farr, the chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee, in Wimbledon, south-west London.
Mr Farr, who died in February at 59, was one of Mrs May’s top counter-terrorism advisors at the Home Office.
After leading MI6’s Russia desk, Mr Steele set up a private firm, and was hired by Fusion GPS, a US research company being paid by Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
Theresa May’s spy chiefs were secretly briefed on an explosive dossier of claims about Donald Trump’s ties to Russia before the US president was made aware of its existence, The Telegraph can reveal.
The heads of MI5 and MI6 and one of Mrs May’s most trusted security advisers were told about former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele’s memos on the Trump campaign in the weeks after his November 2016 election victory.
(1.9.2018) The timeline sketched out by Mr. Ohr shows contacts stretching back to when Mr. Ohr first met Mr. Steele in 2007. It also shows what officials said was the first date on which the two discussed cultivating Mr. Deripaska: a meeting in Washington on Nov. 21, 2014, roughly seven months before Mr. Trump announced that he was running for president. (…)
Mr. Steele served as an intermediary between the Americans and the Russian oligarchs they were seeking to cultivate. He had first met Mr. Ohr years earlier while still serving at MI6, Britain’s foreign spy agency, where he oversaw Russia operations.
(30.8.2018) To believe most media descriptions of Justice Department lawyer Bruce Ohr, he is a nonentity, unworthy of the attention President Trump has given him. This is remarkable, given that Mr. Ohr spent Tuesday confirming for Congress its worst suspicions about the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s abuse of its surveillance and sourcing rules.
(12.8.2018) The communications raise further questions about Steele’s objectivity as an intelligence source, and about Ohr’s motives for maintaining contact with a foreign ex-spy about a Russian billionaire, despite being assigned to a wholly unrelated line of work at the DOJ. Congressional investigators expect Ohr to appear for a closed-door interview on Aug. 28.
(8.8.2018) Emails in 2016 between former British spy Christopher Steele and Justice Department official Bruce Ohr suggest Steele was deeply concerned about the legal status of a Putin-linked Russian oligarch, and at times seemed to be advocating on the oligarch’s behalf, in the same time period Steele worked on collecting the Russia-related allegations against Donald Trump that came to be known as the Trump dossier. The emails show Steele and Ohr were in frequent contact, that they intermingled talk about Steele’s research and the oligarch’s affairs, and that Glenn Simpson, head of the dirt-digging group Fusion GPS that hired Steele to compile the dossier, was also part of the ongoing conversation.
(1.9.2018) Bruce Ohr, a Department of Justice official who has become a frequent target of Trump’s ire at the ongoing investigation into his links to Russia and whether they helped influence the election, and Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence operative who compiled a dossier of reporting on Russian influence on Trump, were both involved in the effort, the New York Times reported.
(17.8.2018) President Trump threatened on Friday to quickly revoke the security clearance of Bruce Ohr, a little-known Justice Department official, for the first time seeking to apply his power to cut access to sensitive information to a midlevel government worker rather than a prominent former national security official.
Departing the White House for a fund-raiser, the president told reporters that Mr. Ohr was “a disgrace” and said incorrectly that Mr. Ohr played a part in starting the investigation into Russian election interference and possible links to Trump associates.