‘Obama’s unexpectedly intimate knowledge of the details of Flynn’s calls … raised eyebrows because of his own history with Flynn…’
(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) In its motion to dismiss the case against former national security adviser Michael Flynn on Thursday, the Justice Department released more evidence, with some accounts indicating that former President Barack Obama knew of the conspiracy to entrap Flynn well before it happened.
A lifelong Democrat, Flynn had served briefly in the Obama administration heading the Defense Intelligence Agency. But his out-of-the-box management style clashed with the Obama deep-state, and the president considered him to be “insubordinate,” according to Fox News.
Obama made clear to anyone who would listen that he was “not a fan” of Flynn—including a stern warning to incoming President Donald Trump, who disregarded the admonition by appointing Flynn national security adviser.
The newly released documents relay that while Obama was still in the White House, in January 2017, he met with several of his high-level intelligence operatives to consult about the allegations of Russian interference.
By that point, Obama already had made the decision to expel Russian diplomats and threaten sanctions retroactively over their supposed role in helping Trump win the 2016 election.
After dismissing most of his advisers, Obama asked a few to remain and acknowledged knowing about Flynn’s December 2016 communications with Russian diplomat Sergey Kislyak.
In one of the phone calls, intercepted by the FBI as part of its existing operations to spy on the Trump campaign, Flynn sought to reassure the Kremlin that the lame-duck sanctions would not be extended by the Trump administration.
Surprisingly, during that early meeting, Obama already had all the details.
A Score to Settle
Former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates—who herself was dismissed by the Trump administration for insubordination—was present when Obama and then-FBI Director James Comey first discussed the possibility of prosecuting Flynn under the obscure Logan Act.
“Yates had no idea what the president was talking about, but figured it out based on the conversation,” Fox News reported.
The January 5, 2017 meeting in which Sally Yates said she learned of Flynn-Kislyak call from President Obama himself–Susan Rice and VP Joe Biden were in that meeting, too, per Rice’s famous memo-to-self. pic.twitter.com/6Wpdvkte0y
— Byron York (@ByronYork) May 7, 2020
Yates said she was surprised her at the time that Obama already knew of the phone calls—but as the picture continues to come more into focus, it seems Obama’s personal grudge against Flynn played a big role in the actions that followed.
His tacit assent may have persuaded the corrupt FBI to embark upon their “Crossfire Razor” sting operation against Flynn, the newly appointed NSA chief, even after Obama had already left the White House.
“Obama’s unexpectedly intimate knowledge of the details of Flynn’s calls, which the FBI acknowledged at the time were not criminal or even improper, raised eyebrows because of his own history with Flynn,” wrote Fox News, “and because top FBI officials secretly discussed whether their goal was to ‘get [Flynn] fired’ when they interviewed him in the White House on January 24, 2017.”
The president’s meeting with Comey and Yates may have been where such an idea was planted.
“Yates recalled Comey mentioning the Logan Act, but can’t recall if he specified there was an ‘investigation,'” Fox News reported. “Comey did not talk about prosecution in the meeting.”
Although Obama evidently approved of the outrageous suggestion to try to railroad Flynn using the 1799 Logan Act—a law that had never led to a successful prosecution—the former president also seemed concerned about getting his hands dirty.
Obama “specified that he did not want any additional information on the matter, but was seeking information on whether the White House should be treating Flynn any differently, given the information,”reported Fox News.
Comey has acknowledged that many of his interactions with Obama involved unspoken, dog-whistle signals, effectively allowing plausible deniability for the politically accountable president.
In another meeting at the time, when he and Obama and CIA Director John Brennan met to discuss whether to tell Trump about the Steele Dossier, they decided to do so because “one of the ways you undermine an adversary is to tell them you know all about it.”
Comey—who later admitted running his own counterintelligence operation during the Trump Tower meeting— said he knew the task would fall to him simply by the expression on Obama’s face.
In their plot against Flynn, though, the unspoken consensus seemed to be that the information must be withheld not only from the accused, but also from Trump.
Yates claimed that she offered her dissenting opinion that Trump should be notified, signaling something of a rift between the legal assessment and the intelligence outlook—which was often the case in Comey’s FBI.
That may have left Obama with the deciding vote on whether to withhold the information, which they ultimately did.
Unlike with the Steele Dossier decision, where revealing the false information to gauge his reaction helped them to undermine Trump, in this case the withholding of the information allowed them to attempt to catch Flynn off guard.
As the case unravels, with Justice Department special prosecutor John Durham pursuing likely criminal charges against some of the key figures, Yates’s disavowal could be a telling indicator that some of Obama’s flunkies are starting to break rank to save their own hides.
It is widely speculated that former FBI General Counsel James Baker is cooperating with the Durham probe.
“The message I’m getting from all this is, apparently what we were supposed to have done was to ignore the Russian interference, ignore the Russian meddling and the threat that it poses to us,” former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told CNN in an October interview about the decision to spy on the Trump campaign.
“And oh, by the way, blown off what the then commander in chief, President Obama, told us to do, which was to assemble all the reporting that we could that we had available to us,” Clapper added.