​Papadopoulos & The FBI's Possible Source Inside Trump's Team

Did the FBI have a source inside either Trump’s campaign or Trump’s organization - that is, his business empire? That’s the question that’s being asked again after it flared briefly in the media after news of it broke months after Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS, the notorious communications shop that paid for the Steele Dossier with DNC and Hillary campaign money, stated that there was a such a source during Congressional testimony in August of 2017.

That story was tamped down by NBC's Ken Dilanian tweeting (on the basis of an unnamed source 'close' to Fusion GPS) that Simpson was actually referring to George Papadopoulos' drunken conversation with Australian High Commissioner Alexander Downer in London in the spring of 2016. Lawyers for Glenn Simpson, as outlined by Margot Cleveland in The Federalist however, when asked by Senator Grassley to correct the Congressional testimony that Simpson gave, responded:

...you have asked about the August 22, 2017 testimony from our client Glenn Simpson that Christopher Steele in the fall of 2016 said he believed the FBI had another source within the Trump organization/campaign. Mr. Simpson stands by his testimony.

In other words, there may very well have been an FBI source within Trump's campaign or inside his business empire. Who? A mysterious Professor Misfud from Malta who operated out of London appears central to this question. He contacted Papadopoulos sometime around March 2016 and invited him to join his organization The London Centre of International Law Practice, as an energy analyst. Misfud appears to be the London based professor who supposedly had contacts with Russian officials close to Putin, and who offered Papadopoulos 'dirt' on Hillary Clinton in late April of 2016 at a meeting in London. This is presumably what led Papadopoulos a week or so later to brag to Downer - the Aussie diplomat - that he had information on Hillary possibly from her hacked emails.

Was Misfud helping set up Papadopoulos in order to sabotage Trump? Or was he a genuine Putin ally laying out feelers for how Trump's campaign team would react to any offers of opposition research on Hillary? Hard to say at this point seeing that Mifsud dropped out of site in Rome apparently late last year.

But there's another interesting character brought up in a Daily Caller story.on Papadopoulos' work in September 2016 through October 2016 for a man called Stefan Halper, an academic with a long history of government work starting in Nixon's administration and including stints for Reagan and for H.W. Bush's presidency as well. Halper has connections to both MI6 and the CIA. Why did he contract Papadopoulos to write up a report on energy issues in the Middle East for which he was paid $3,000? When Halper's expertise is apparently Russian and Chinese geopolitics? Was he also testing to see how useful a dupe Papdopoulos could prove?

Carter Page also attended an event organized by Halper at Cambridge where Halper is a visiting professor. a few days after Page returned from a trip to Moscow. Was Halper trying to reel in Trump campaign aides with promises of information? Or was he just looking for a little contracting work from yet another possible client?

Clearly Halper is not the source that the FBI may very well have had in the Trump campaign or organization, but he seems to be yet another key figure. One very much related to the foreign policy establishment, an establishment that has been virulently critical of Trump.

And it seems that poor Papadopoulos had found himself surrounded by dubious offers and seductive promises back in the heady days of 2016. Who wouldn't feel out of depth in that sort of situation? It seems Papadopoulos himself is still trying to work out what the hell happened to him back then. The answers to that may be very helpful to our understanding of how the FBI began it's Russia counterintelligence probe.

That possible FBI source would have the answers to quite a few questions on the Russia probe's early days. Let's see if he or she is outed sometime soon.

Posted by Keeley at May 18, 2018 12:16 PM
Comment #427045

The intelligence agencies of seven other countries reported collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, namely Australia, Estonia, France, Germany, Holland, Poland, and Sweden. (Newsweek) Besides, we know it’s all true because Dumpty calls it fake news, which is a terminology that means that it’s not only true, but very true, and the whole truth is even worse than what we think. Stupid RT generated conspiracy theories shouldn’t be published here.

Posted by: Ohrealy at May 18, 2018 1:46 PM
Comment #427049

It is difficult to believe the stupidity of those involved in using the FBI and CIA to spy on the Trump campaign. There is no Russian/Trump connection except for the fiction created, and paid for, by the Democrats and Clinton.

The IG report will be released soon. Already, some details are being leaked to the NY Times and others to soften the blow when the full story is released.

The Democrats are in really terrible shape facing the coming election.

Posted by: Royal Flush at May 18, 2018 3:42 PM
Comment #427050

It won’t be a blue wave, it will be a blue whirlpool.

Posted by: Weary Willie at May 18, 2018 5:01 PM
Comment #427051

Right on Weary. A giant sucking sound as the Libbies disappear in a puff of black smoke.

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Posted by: Subhash Shastri at May 21, 2018 6:25 AM
Comment #427142

So I’ve been trying to figure all of this out. People made a big deal out of this Halper guy but it seems to me that Mifsud is the critical player. He has confirmed that he passed the information about the hacked emails to Papadopoulos in March. Papadopoulos told Downer about the emails (in a bathroom?) a month later and he connected the dots after the Wikileaks story broke in July. On July 31st the investigation was opened and Halper started gathering intel on Page and Papadopoulos (legit based on the warrant).

The only interesting thing about Halper is his interactions with Page prior to the warrant. If they were fishing Page prior to the warrant then that, to me, would be a no no.

Mifsud on the other hand knew about the emails in March 2016. Why he told Papadopoulos is an interesting question, and why Papadopoulos told Downer is even more interesting. And if all of that is enough to obtain a warrant on an ongoing Presidential campaign then the judge(s) need to have their heads examined.

Posted by: George at May 21, 2018 4:00 PM
Comment #427151

Wikipedia does a good summary of the timeline of events:

Papadopoulous “was approached by Joseph Mifsud, a professor with connections to high-ranking Russian officials… Mifsud told him the Russians had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton in the form of “thousands of emails.” The two met on March 14 and 21, 2016…

Papadopoulos sent emails concerning Putin to at least seven campaign officials. Clovis, as Trump national campaign co-chairman, encouraged Papadopoulos to fly to Russia to meet with agents of the Russian Foreign Ministry, after being told that Russia had “dirt” on Clinton it wanted to share with Trump’s campaign… This occurred before there was public knowledge of the hack of Democratic National Committee and of John Podesta’s emails, both of which U.S. intelligence agencies believe were carried out by Russia. In May 2016, Papadopoulos told the top Australian diplomat to the United Kingdom, Alexander Downer, that Russia had “political dirt” on Hillary Clinton, leading the Federal Bureau of Investigation to open a counterintelligence investigation into the Donald Trump presidential campaign.

Between March and September 2016, Papadopoulos made at least six requests for Trump or representatives of his campaign to meet in Russia with Russian politicians. In May, campaign chairman Paul Manafort forwarded one such request to his deputy Rick Gates, saying “We need someone to communicate that [Trump] is not doing these trips. It should be someone low-level in the campaign so as not to send any signal.”

Remember, what we are seeing right now is political. The information is known to Trump and his associates, as well as the Mueller investigation. The purpose is political. I can not stress that enough.

Trump is betting if he can convince his base to support him regardless of the findings, he will not be impeached in the Senate. It is that simple. This means discrediting the DOJ, FBI, FISA courts, and the free press. Trump will go to any lengths, no matter how much damage it does to the country.

These people are traitors and crooks. We see it almost daily. In several secret meetings, Trump pressed the postmaster general to double the rates on Amazon as an act of political revenge. Using the federal government as an instrument of revenge was one of the articles of impeachment drafted for Nixon. Perhaps more importantly, we have a second act of collusion coming into the open: On 8/3/16, Trump Jr. met with a representative of the Saudis & UAE, Stephen Miller, and an Israelis social media expert in Trump Tower on how they could help Trump win.

But does it matter? Trump is making the calculatin that, regardless of what happens in the midterms, if he can just keep his base and 34 senators, he can stay in office. Perhaps indefinitely. This is an autocrat, a dictator in the making. This is how such people come to power. They do not just show up and collapse a country’s institutions in an instant, without support. They need a base who will support them no matter what.

Posted by: phx8 at May 21, 2018 6:53 PM
Comment #427154

Like I said, this political. One way to assess it is to take the long term point of view- or in this case, review.
Trump has gone from denying there were any contacts with the Russians, to denying there were any meetings, to denying there was any collusion, and now, through Hannity & Ghouliani, suggesting collusion is not illegal. His supporters do not even notice this. They have been moved from believing the Russians were out to help Hillary Clinton and hurt Trump, all the way to where we are today. Trump repeats the same things about a “hoax,” that there was “no collusion,” and that we should not look at him, but look at Hillary Clinton instead. The problem is not the findings of the investigation, but the investigators. The problem, according to Trump, is all those who would criticize him and limit his power- the MSM, the FBI, the DOJ, and so on. It is transparently false, but it works with Trump supporters.

Political abominations like Trump helping a sanctioned Chinese telecommunications company because it was costing too many Chinese jobs is ignored, even when the DoD & Congress immediately overruled Trump’s move because it was a risk to national security.

By the way, we lost the trade war with China. They targeted soy farmers in IA, IL, MN, and elsewhere, and made all their purchases with other countries. Poof! No more tariffs against China!

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Comment #427165

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Posted by: skype supports at May 22, 2018 6:09 AM
Comment #427197


If Papadopoulous is a traitor then why was he only charged with false statements to the FBI? Seems like you wouldn’t let a traiter plea out to something with a 30 day sentence.

Again my inquiry was about Halper. Everyone was making a big deal about the spying on the Trump campaign, but if they had a warrant then his actions after July 31, 2016 are legit. They should be making a big deal, instead, about the issuing of a warrant based on nothing.

Posted by: George at May 22, 2018 7:42 AM
Comment #427198

nice post!

Posted by: skype supports at May 22, 2018 8:08 AM
Comment #427200

I am not following what you are trying to say regarding a warrant.

“If Papadopoulous is a traitor then why was he only charged with false statements to the FBI?”

Because it was a plea bargain. In exchange for the guilty plea, Papadopolous agreed to actively cooperate, and actively cooperating usually means wearing a wire.

None of the Mueller indictments and guilty pleas reveal anything more than absolutely necessary about the investigation. The Manafort defense team tried to have the case dismissed on the grounds that the indictments did not involve the Russians, interference in the 2016 election, and cooperation from the Trump campaign, and therefore were outside the scope of the Mueller investigation. After discussing it with the Mueller team, the judge announced that the case did, in fact, involve the Russians and ‘collusion.’

The Mueller team knows a lot more than they are revealing. Some of the information is out there, but it is rare to see it put together in one place. I would recommend “Russian Roulette” by Corn & Isikoff as a great read and a good resource.

By the way, the IC knew about Carter Page for a long time. Years ago he actually put the line ‘informal advisor to the Kremlin’ on his resume, and he was mentioned by Russians who were being wiretapped in another criminal case in 2013. (They called him an “idiot”). Page was visited and specifically warned by the FBI that he was being recruited. Page also made anti-American public speeches in Russia because he was very mad at Obama. The Russian sanctions cost Page a lot of money, and he was very vocal about it. It is not illegal to make anti-American speeches in Russia, but it sure does raise some eyebrows, and when that is the first foreign policy advisor named to a campaign, that raises questions too.

Early in the election campaign, when Trump was asked to name someone- anyone- who would be on his foreign policy team, the first and only name he blurted out was none other than Carter Page.

Posted by: phx8 at May 22, 2018 9:13 AM
Comment #427208

Mark Penn turns on Clintons, denounces Mueller probe as ‘deep-state’ quasi-coup


Sorry phx8 and my other Liberal Clinton/Obama loving Pals. I hear the “fat lady” singing; and the smart money is betting on prison terms for many top Democrats.

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Posted by: Royal Flush at May 22, 2018 4:22 PM
Comment #427210

Why waste time on a washed up hack like Mark Penn? Some blame him for HRC’s loss in 2008. Democrats do not like him, and he does not like Democrats. He is into the same gig as Doug Schoen, going on FOX, calling himself a Democrat so that FOX can pretend it is not just a propaganda network, and then criticizing Democrats.

Mark Penn does not know jack about the Mueller investigation. (And by the way, you should have linked The Hill for the full article). He pretends Papadopoulis never pleaded guilty to the FBI. He pretends the former National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn, never pleaded guilty. He pretends the Deputy Campaign Manager, Gates, never pleaded guilty. But ALL of them pleaded guilty in exchange for cooperation, and dropping a raft of other indictments.

Manafort still faces the indictments. If he does not flip he will go to jail for the rest of his life. Soon Trump’s personal lawyer and self-described fixer, Michael Cohen, will face a raft of federal AND state indictments. If he does not flip, he will also go to jail for the rest of his life.

A second meeting involving collusion took place on 8/3/16 between Trump Jr., Erik Prince, George Nader, and an Israeli social media expert concerning how the Saudis, UAE, and Israel could help the Trump campaign. Prince concealed this meeting while testifying under oath. He will face perjury charges.George Nader has already flipped, by the way, and he is a cooperating witness too.

According to his close associate, Roger Stone perjured himself. He will be going to jail.

And we haven’t even come to Trump Jr., Kushner, Ivanka, and their crimes. Or Trump, for that matter.

Posted by: phx8 at May 22, 2018 5:41 PM
Comment #427212

Wow…many thanks to phx8 for explaining what I read. And, many thanks for explaining what is really behind a few indictments for process crimes; and charges stemming from events a decade or longer old.

Gee, I didn’t know that Mark Penn had become a “hack”. I guess it’s rather like religious excommunication.

Anyone who no longer believes the party bullshit must be a hack.

Posted by: Royal Flush at May 22, 2018 6:00 PM
Comment #427213

I find it interesting that our Pal phx8 apparently only reads, and then reports on, negative news.

With over fifty percent of Americans expressing a belief that President Trump is doing a good job, and that the country is on the “right track”, one would think that phx8 would be aware of that.

I also find it interesting that many of the theories presented by phx8, regarding the Mueller investigation, are only found in places frequented by Liberal “hacks”. It would appear that both phx8 and j2t2 have found clandestine information known only to a few “insiders” like them.

phx8 has been reporting to us for over a year that President Trump is guilty of some Russian fan-dangle to get elected. Nothing of the kind has been found or reported as fact.

What’s going on phx8. Where are the charges. What is the evidence. Spill your guts please and tell us.

Posted by: Royal Flush at May 22, 2018 6:34 PM
Comment #427215

I’m impressed by just how spectacularly the trade negotiations with China failed. On our side of the table, the free traders won by default and the sheer incompetence of those favoring tariffs. At one point two of the top people on our delegation, Mnuchin and Navarro, had to step outside to conduct a raging argument. We were unprepared and undecided on what our position would even be. The Chinese were undoubtedly unimpressed. The talks failed, and all tariffs against the Chinese are now off the table. The markets loved it.

The Chinese backed business venture in Indonesia that Trump was heavily involved in to the tune of $500 billion. In return, Trump decided to ‘do President Xi a favor’ and dismiss sanctions against the big Chinese telecom, because it was ‘costing the Chinese too many jobs.’ Corrupt much? Removing the sanctions threatened national security. A Senate Committee voted 23-2 against removing sanctions.

The attempt to replace ideal based international democratic ideals with nationalistic self-interest agendas might benefit Russia, but it sure isn’t helping us.

Enjoying those high gas prices? You can bet Russia is.

Posted by: phx8 at May 22, 2018 6:43 PM
Comment #427216

“But ALL of them pleaded guilty in exchange for cooperation”

You can add Jeffrey Yohai, Manafort’s former son in law, to that list. He was using a public defender.

Evegny Freidman, business partner of Michael Cohen, pled guilty to state charges(tax evasion instead of tax fraud and grand larceny) in NY, and has agreed to cooperate with state and federal investigators.

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Comment #427293

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