The Real Victims of Trump–Russia Collusion Hoax: Those Smeared as ‘Russian Agents’

April 9, 2019 Updated: April 15, 2019

Commentary

When President Donald Trump declassifies all the FISA-related documents—as he has vowed to do—we’ll see a most sordid story of how top FBI and Justice Department (DOJ) officials launched a politically motivated “counter-intelligence” investigation of the Trump campaign, using confidential informants who were sent to entrap innocent people.

For two years, the Spygate plotters and some media outlets inside the DNC Media Complex coordinated together to sell the U.S. public the hoax that the “Crossfire Hurricane” investigation started with verified evidence that Trump’s campaign was compromised by agents of the Russian government.

Much of this hoax was centered around the now-infamous “Steele dossier,” the political opposition research project of former MI6 official Christopher Steele, who was paid by the Hillary Clinton campaign through the political operative firm Fusion GPS to target Trump and his associates with fake allegations of Russian collusion.

Carter Page and George Papadopoulos were two lower-level campaign advisers who were targeted to be entrapped, and then had confidential informants such as Stefan Halper, Joseph Mifsud, and Alexander Downer sent to them to “discover” they were working with the Russians.

Former Trump national security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn also is mentioned in the now-discredited Steele dossier. The dossier claims the Russian government was “successful” in its attempts to cultivate a relationship with Flynn. The general also was alleged to have been involved in Russian collusion, following a leak of his phone calls with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

The Steele dossier also alleged that both Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen played key roles in the Russian collusion along with Page, setting up meetings with Russian handlers, making payments to hackers, making under-the-table deals with Russian government officials, and more.

Svetlana Lokhova, who is a Soviet intelligence studies academic at Cambridge in the United Kingdom, was accused of being a Russian agent when Halper needed a reason to claim that Flynn was being approached by a “Russian honeypot” and had been at risk of being compromised.

Surprisingly enough, Halper sat on his accusation about Lokhova for two years. He waited until Flynn had joined the Trump campaign to begin expressing his concerns, but I’m sure that’s just a coincidence.

All the evidence that supposedly proved these innocent people were actually nefarious Russian agents fell apart upon close examination.

The special counsel’s office, led by Robert Mueller and his team of 13 Democrats, just ended its exhaustive two-year investigation of the Russian collusion claims. That means the special counsel spent almost two years carefully examining whether any of the people accused of being Russian assets were, in fact, working for the Russian government.

After all that time engaging in a most careful examination of this issue, the number of Americans that the Mueller team prosecuted for being Russian agents or colluders is … zero.

Since it was first confidently asserted by DOJ and FBI officials that they had verified evidence that Page and others were Russian assets, we’ve repeatedly learned the Steele dossier was an amalgamation of anonymous second- and third-hand stories from anonymous Russian sources.

The special counsel’s office took every pain to try to verify the allegations contained in the Steele dossier and couldn’t do it.

This is why Page was never charged with a single crime, Papadopoulos was hit with a mere process perjury charge (and got only 14 days in a Club Fed), while Manafort and Cohen ended up going to prison for their own personal financial crimes, which were illegal lobbying, bank fraud, and tax evasion.

Lokhova was professionally ostracized after her former colleague at Cambridge, Stefan Halper, publicly accused her of being a Russian spy. Her teaching and lecturing opportunities dried up and the U.S. publisher of her first book, “The Spy Who Changed History,” canceled the contract after the allegation was made. (The book was subsequently published in the UK in June 2018.)

We’ve since learned the supposedly highly competent former MI6 intelligence officer who compiled the Steele dossier ended up naming Russian entrepreneur Aleksej Gubarev in the dossier as being involved in criminal hacking, due to grabbing his name off a defunct CNN website written by anonymous public users.

Small wonder then, with this being the kind of “intelligence work” involved in the dossier’s creation, that Mueller and his team found themselves unable to find any evidence that would sustain an actual criminal charge against these innocent people who were targeted and then smeared.

The people accused of being Russian agents have spent the past several years of their lives living under a cloud of suspicion, while the people who placed them there knew all along they were innocent.

People should go to prison for having done this. Lawsuits should be filed seeking hundreds of millions in damages, not only against the government officials who abused their offices to set this travesty in motion but from the media outlets that willingly coordinated with them to target these innocent people.

It can’t be stressed enough: Numerous “news” reporters didn’t “fall” for the Trump–Russia hoax; they were willing participants in creating and spreading it. And when this is demonstrated through documentary evidence, these reporters and the media outlets they work for need to be held fully accountable for what they deliberately did.

Brian Cates is a writer based in South Texas and author of “Nobody Asked For My Opinion … But Here It Is Anyway!” He can be reached on Twitter @drawandstrike.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

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