Russiagate Timeline Jan – Feb 2017


 January 2017

 January 2017: Press Secretary Sean Spicer says,”Carter Page is an individual who the president-elect does not know and was put on notice months ago by the campaign.” NBCHouse Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) requested for Sally Yates’s testimony. Yates’s lawyer notified the Justice Dept. that much of her testimony would be barred and covered by the Presidential Communication Privilege. The DOJ referred Yates to White House lawyers and Yates’s attorney David O’Neil sent the letter & Pg. 2 that said she would not compromise classified information and current cases but that Privilege was waived by public comments about Yates’s discussion and assuming waiver without notice.Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, FBI Director James Comey, CIA Director John Brennan, and NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers presented Obama and Trump with a 2-page synopsis of the Steele memo and other intelligence.  CNN“Concerned that classified material relating to Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election might disappear once the Trump administration took office, Obama administration officials create a list containing the serial numbers of key documents. An administration official hand-delivers this list to senior members of the Senate intelligence committee.”  Mother Jones 

January 3, 2017: Trump Tweets  The “Intelligence” briefing on so-called “Russian hacking” was delayed until Friday, perhaps more time needed to build a case. Very strange! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump)

January 4, 2017     Trump Tweets:
Julian Assange said “a 14 year old could have hacked Podesta” – why was DNC so careless? Also said Russians did not give him the info! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 4, 2017  Bill Moyers

January 5, 2017: Trump Tweets:“The dishonest media likes saying that I am in Agreement with Julian Assange – wrong. I simply state what he states, it is for the people….”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 5, 2017“Trump tweets a series of attacks on the integrity of the US intelligence community’s findings that Russia had hacked the election.”Bill Moyers

January 6, 2017: “The Office of the Director of National Intelligence releases a report [25 page] saying that the CIA, the FBI, and the NSA believe there is evidence that Russia actively tried to help Trump win the election. They also conclude with “high confidence” that Russian military intelligence used the Guccifer 2.0 persona and a website called to release the hacked documents and that Russia’s military intelligence branch channeled hacked material to WikiLeaks.”  Mother Jones “The CIA, FBI and NSA release their unclassified report,concluding unanimously, “Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election.” The three intelligence agencies agree that “the Russian government aspired to help President-elect Trump’s election chances when possible.” The report also states that WikiLeaks had been Russia’s conduit for the effort, writing “We assess with high confidence that Russian military intelligence (General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate or GRU) used the Guccifer 2.0 persona and to release US victim data obtained in cyber operations publicly and in exclusives to media outlets and relayed material to WikiLeaks.” [Updated March 13, 2017]Bill Moyers

January 10, 2017:  Trump Tweets an attack on Buzzfeed,

‘BuzzFeed Runs Unverifiable Trump-Russia Claims’ #FakeNews …

6:00 PM –Jan 10, 2017

THE CHRISTOPHER STEELE DOSSIER & SENATE INTELLIGENCE DEBRIEFINGBuzzfeed publishes the December Steele Memo to McCain.  Full Memo


Background to “Assessing Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections”: The Analytic Process and Cyber Incident Attribution Declassified

“At Jeff Sessions’ confirmation hearing to become attorney general, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) asks him, “If there is any evidence that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign communicated with the Russian government in the course of this campaign, what will you do?” Sessions answers: “I’m not aware of any of those activities. I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians, and I’m unable to comment on it.” [Updated March 4, 2017]Bill MoyersNBC News” CNN reports that Obama and Trump received classified briefings that covered allegations contained in the Russia-Trump memos authored by the Western intelligence official that Russian intelligence possessed compromising material on Trump.- BuzzFeed publishes the Trump-Russia memos in full.- Trump calls the Russia memos story “#fakenews” on Twitter.- FBI Director James Comey testifies at a Senate intelligence committee hearing. He is asked whether the FBI is investigating Trump campaign staffers’ ties to Russia. Comey declines to answer the question.” Mother Jones 

“A hearing on Sessions’s nomination to serve as attorney general is held by the Senate Judiciary Committee. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) asks about a CNN report on Russian ties to the Trump campaign that came out that day…’FRANKEN: CNN just published a story alleging that the intelligence community provided documents to the president-elect last week, that included information that “Russian operatives claim to have compromising personal and financial information about Mr. Trump.” These documents also allegedly say “there was a continuing exchange of information during the campaign between Trump surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government.” Again, I’m telling you this as it’s coming out, so, you know.But if it’s true, it’s obviously extremely serious, and if there is any evidence that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign communicated with the Russian government in the course of this campaign, what will you do?SESSIONS: Senator Franken, I’m not aware of any of those activities. I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians, and I’m unable to comment on it.FRANKEN: Very well.”” Washington Post

“Paul [Manafort, resigned for 5 months and under investigation] called Reince [Priebus], as a responsible ally of the president would do, and said this story about me is garbage, and a bunch of the other stuff in there seems implausible,” said a person close to Manafort.” PoliticoWashington Post Video

January 11, 2017:Russia just said the unverified report paid for by political opponents is “A COMPLETE AND TOTAL FABRICATION, UTTER NONSENSE.” Very unfair!”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 11, 2017“Russia has never tried to use leverage over me. I HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH RUSSIA – NO DEALS, NO LOANS, NO NOTHING!”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 11, 2017“I win an election easily, a great “movement” is verified, and crooked opponents try to belittle our victory with FAKE NEWS. A sorry state!”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 11, 2017“Trump again denies the allegations in the Russia memos in a series of tweets. Also in reference to the Russia allegations, he asks, “Intelligence agencies should never have allowed this fake news to “leak” into the public. One last shot at me.Are we living in Nazi Germany?”— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 11, 2017 ” Mother Jones    “At his first news conference, Trump says, “As far as hacking, I think it was Russia. But I think we also get hacked by other countries and other people.” The final question of Trump’s first news conference comes from Ann Compton of ABC News: “Mr. President-elect, can you stand here today, once and for all, and say that no one connected to you or your campaign had any contact with Russia leading up to or during the presidential campaign?” Trump never answered her. Away from cameras and heading toward the elevators, he reportedly says, “No,” his team didn’t have contact with Russia.”Bill Moyers
Trump’s News Conference: Full Transcript and Video“Sheri Dillon, Trump’s outside lawyer and a partner in the Morgan, Lewis & Bockius law firm, presents the plan to deal with Trump’s business conflicts of interest during his presidency. The plan allows Trump to retain beneficial ownership in all of his businesses. Across the political spectrumlegal experts agreethe plan is a sham because, among other things, it does not require Trump to divest his holdings.” [Added May 15, 2017]Bill Moyers“Trump’s private tax attorney Sheri Dillon promised that he would “Meaningfully separate himself from the Trump Organization-something that never happened.”Mother Jones

Around January 11:A secret meeting takes place in the Seychelles between Blackwater founder Erik Prince,a major Trump campaign donor and brother of education secretary Betsy DeVos, and a Russian close to Vladimir Putin in an effort to establish an unofficial back channel between Moscow and Donald Trump. According to sources who would later speak to the Washington Post, the meeting was allegedly coordinated by the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, and his brother. It occurred shortly after a December visit to the US by Zayed, which the UAE did not disclose to the Obama administration.”Mother Jones 

January 12, 2017:Flynn-Kislyak calls leaked to the Washington Post.  “The first questions about national security adviser-designate Michael Flynn’s interactions with Russia’s ambassador are reported by The Washington Post.” Washington Post

January 13, 2017: “Trump again calls claims about his Russian connections “fake news.” His tweet refers to a comment by a Kremlin spokesman earlier in the month that called the US intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia interfered in the US election “absolutely unfounded.” Mother Jones                       “In response to The Washington Post’s article about Flynn’s Dec. 29 conversations with the Russian ambassador, press secretary Sean Spicer says it was only one call. They “exchanged logistical information” for an upcoming call between Trump and Vladimir Putin after the inauguration.”Bill Moyers

January 15, 2017: “In an appearance on Face the Nation, Vice President-elect Mike Pence says Michael Flynn told him that he did not discuss US sanctions during his conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.” Mother Jones     “Vice President-elect Mike Pence appears on “Face the Nation” and — erroneously, as it turns out — says that Flynn’s contacts with Kislyak were “strictly coincidental” and that Flynn and the Russian “did not discuss anything having to do with the United States’ decision to expel diplomats or impose censure against Russia.”  Washington Post    “What I can confirm, having to spoken with [Flynn] about it, is that those conversations that happened to occur around the time that the United States took action to expel diplomats had nothing whatsoever to do with those sanctions.’”Bill Moyers  “We should trust Putin,” Trump tells The Times of London. Expressing once again his skepticism about NATO, Trump lambastes German Chancellor Angela Merkel.”Bill Moyers

January 17, 2017: “Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) sends Sessions a lengthy letter asking about Russia (and a number of other things).Several of the President-Elect’s nominees or senior advisers have Russian ties. Have you been in contact with anyone connected to any part of the Russian government about the 2016 election, either before or after Election Day? RESPONSE: No.”  Washington Post

January 18, 2017: Devin Nunes attended a breakfast with Michael Flynn and Turkey’s foreign minister just before the inauguration Business Insider Natasha BertrandNov. 10, 2017 Devin Nunes, “Michael Flynn, then the incoming national security adviser, and Mevlut Cavusoglu, the Turkish foreign minister

January 19, 2017: “The New York Times reports that the FBI, the NSA, the CIA, and the Treasury Department’s financial crimes unit are investigating Paul Manafort, Carter Page, and Roger Stone for their possible contacts with Russia during the campaign. As part of their investigation, the Times reports, these agencies are examining intercepted communications and financial transactions.”Mother Jones 

January 20, 2017: “Trump is inaugurated as the 45th president of the United States.”Mother Jones 

Some prominent Russians came to Washington to witness Donald Trump’s inauguration last year. Above is a section where some had ticketed seats in front of the U.S. Capitol. The Washington Post By Craig Timberg Rosalind S. Helderman Andrew Roth Carol D. Leonnig January 20, 2018

January 22, 2017: “Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn was sworn in as national security adviser, a position that does not require Senate confirmation.”Bill Moyers    “Two days after Donald Trump becomes President Trump, Comey and the president meet at a reception for law enforcement and security officials in the White House Blue Room. Trump calls Comey over and they hug.”He’s become more famous than me,” Trump said with a chuckle, according to Reuters.” NPR

January 23, 2017: “White House press secretary Sean Spicer holds his first White House press briefing. He insists that national security adviser Michael Flynn’s conversations with the Russian ambassador included no discussion of US sanctions.”Mother Jones      “FBI Director James B. Comey initially opposed Yates notifying McGahn, citing concerns that it could complicate the bureau’s ongoing investigation. “A turning point came after Jan. 23, when [Sean] Spicer, in his first official media briefing, again was asked about Flynn’s communications with [Ambassador Sergey] Kislyak,” Adam, Ellen and Phil report. “Spicer said that he had talked to Flynn about the issue ‘again last night.’ There was just ‘one call,’ Spicer said. And it covered four subjects: a plane crash that claimed the lives of a Russian military choir; Christmas greetings; Russian-led talks over the Syrian civil war; and the logistics of setting up a call between Putin and Trump. Spicer said that was the extent of the conversation. Yates again raised the issue with Comey, who now backed away from his opposition to informing the White House.” Yates then spoke to McGahn. ” Washington Post

January 24, 2017: “The FBI interviews Flynn about his phone conversations with the Russian ambassador. Flynn reportedly denies having discussed US sanctions on Russia.”Mother Jones  FBI writes a “302” Maddow

January 25, 2017:Sally Yates received a detailed readout from the FBI from the agents who conducted the interview and, in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, said they did not want to wait for the “302” report and went straight to the White House. Maddow

January 26, 2017:Sally Yates, accompanied by a Security official, warned the Trump White House counsel Donald McGahn that Michael Flynn’s calls had been intercepted and there was proof he had misled about communications with Kislyak and could be vulnerable to Russian Blackmail, which was supported by James R. Clapper Jr., Director of National Intelligence and John Brennan, CIA Director.  Washington Post , February 13, 2017   CBS NewsRep. Devin Nunes, R-CA, Intelligence Committee Chairman cancelled the hearing in which Yates would have testified against Flynn. Washington Post    CBS News

January 26, 2017:“Sally Yates, the acting attorney general, informs White House counsel Don McGahn that Flynn had discussed US sanctions on Russia with the Russian ambassador, despite Flynn’s claims to the contrary in his FBI interview.    – McGahn informs Trump of Yates’ report that Flynn had a conversation with the Russian ambassador in December that included a discussion about US sanctions. This reveals that Flynn misled Pence when he said he had not had substantive conversations with the Russian ambassador.” Mother Jones      “Sean Spicer later says Trump and a small group of White House advisers were “immediately informed of the situation.’”Bill Moyers 

January (date unknown): “At the Manhattan Loews Regency hotel on Park Avenue, Trump’s personal attorney, Michael D. Cohenmeets with Felix Sater and Andrii Artemenko,a pro-Putin lawmaker from Ukraine. Artemenko and Sater gave Cohen a peace plan whereby Russia would lease Ukraine for 50 or 100 years and, eventually, get relief from US sanctions.”Bill Moyers The New York Times reports that Cohen delivered this plan to Flynn. Cohen confirms he met with Sater and the Ukrainian lawmaker, but denies that they discussed a Ukraine-Russia peace plan or that he delivered such a plan to Flynn or the White House. “Mother Jones“Responding to questions from The Washington Post, Cohen denies that statement, calling it “fake news.” [Added March 3, 2017]Bill Moyers 

January 27, 2017: Sen. John McCain stated desire to codify into law sanctions placed against Russia for annexing Crimea, invading Ukraine, Syria and building up military along NATO’s eastern side.  Statement    Business InsiderTrump requested a private dinner with FBI Director James Comey.  NY Times May 11, 2017   “The president then turned the conversation to whether Mr. Comey would pledge his loyalty to him. Mr. Comey declined to make that pledge. Instead, Mr. Comey has recounted to others, he told Mr. Trump that he would always be honest with him, but that he was not “reliable” in the conventional political sense…At the dinner described by Mr. Trump in his interview with NBC, the conversation with Mr. Comey was quite different. Mr. Trump told NBC that Mr. Comey requested it to ask to keep his job. Mr. Trump said he asked the F.B.I. director if he was under investigation, a question that legal experts called highly unusual if not improper. In Mr. Trump’s telling, Mr. Comey reassured him that he was not.” NY Times

January 29, 2017: Trump, Kushner and Michael Flynn met in the Oval Office. TIME

January 30, 2017:On her way out, Acting Attorney General Sally Yates was fired immediately after ordering federal attorneys to deny the immigration order/Travel Ban. Trump Tweets Yates betrayed the DOJ. “Trump’s senior policy adviser, Stephen Miller, blasted Yates on Fox News after the acting attorney general was fired.” Washington Post   

January 31, 2017: Trump and Kushner met with Government Cybersecurity Experts TIMEA Kushner Companies spokesperson announces that Jared Kushner has sold his interest in 666 Fifth Avenue to a family trust of which he, Ivanka and their children are not beneficiaries.” Salon

February 2017

February 2017:“Carter Page told “PBS NewsHour” that he was a ‘junior member of the [Trump] campaign’s foreign policy advisory group.’”  Washington Post

February 3, 2017:Trump goes to Mar-a-Lago for the annual Red Cross gala

February 4, 2017: Trump at Trump International Golf Club, West Palm Beach

February 5, 2017:Trump had meetings and spent the morning at the Trump International Golf Club, West Palm Beach, returning for an evening Super Bowl party.

February 6, 2017: Trump at Mar-a-Lago

February 7, 2017: Trump tweets:I don’t know Putin, have no deals in Russia, and the haters are going crazy – yet Obama can make a deal with Iran, #1 in terror, no problem!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 7, 2017Mother Jones

Around this time, Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen hand delivered a Ukraine-Russia peace plan which would allow sanctions to be dropped, backed by Felix Sater and Ukrainian lawmaker Andrii Artemenko, who wanted to rise in the Manafort-backed opposition party. NYTimes

February 8, 2017:“In an interview with the Washington PostFlynn denies discussing US sanctions with the Russian ambassador.” [Sergey Kislyak] Mother Jones“Jeff Sessions, the first senator to endorse Trump’s candidacy and the former chair of the Trump campaign’s national security advisory committee, becomes attorney general. Every Republican senator and Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia votes to confirm him. During the confirmation process, Sessions had said he was “not aware of a basis to recuse myself” from the Justice Department’s Russia-related investigations of Trump.”Bill Moyers Confirmed  52-47 vote Washington Post“(Gentry) Beach, (Wadie) Habboush and National Security Council officials took place on Feb. 8, according to one source with knowledge of the matter. Habboush presented senior NSC officials with a detailed plan to improve political relations with Venezuela and lift U.S. sanctions” MIC

February 9, 2017:“A spokesman for Flynn softens the national security adviser’s denial, telling the Washington Post that ‘while he had no recollection of discussing sanctions, he couldn’t be certain that the topic never came up.’”Mother Jones        Washington Post“Habboush returned to the White House and presented the (Venezuelan Sanctions Removal) plan directly to White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, the two sources said. According to one of the sources, Beach and Habboush set up their meetings with NSC officials through deputy national security adviser K.T. McFarland.”MICRep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) filed a “Resolution of Inquiry” demanding that Attorney General Jeff Sessions hand over to the House “any document, record, memo, correspondence or other communication” pertaining to “criminal or counterintelligence investigations” related to Trump, White House staff or his business. Politico“Jared Kushner reportedly orchestrates a fence-mending phone call between Trump and China’s president, during which Trump reaffirms the US “one China” policy that his earlier conduct had placed in doubt.” Salon

February 10, 2017:“Speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One, Trump says he is not aware of reports that Flynn has discussed US sanctions with the Russian ambassador. He has in fact been aware of Flynn’s contacts with Kislyak since late January.  Dmitri Rybolovlev’s plane lands in Miami from Marseille the day before Trump is set to arrive at Mar-a-Lago for the weekend.”Mother Jones

February 11, 2017:Trump at Mar-a-Lago with Japanese PM.”Trump National Golf Club located 20 mi. from Mar-a-Lago, was used by president Trump to host Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Ab” Wikipedia

February 11-12, 2017: Maria Butina and handler “Anton Fedyashin, Professor of History at the American University, who could not resist the temptation to be photographed with his mentee and to mention her in his publication of April 6, 2017″ American University School of International Service Conference in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania,  “MA student Maria Butina put it this way: ‘Our trip was like a time machine that took us through the present, the future and the past of U.S./Russia/Ukraine/Belarus/Azerbaijan relations. We had a great time learning about each other – students from all of these countries (and two American universities!) that represented different generations and cultures. It helped us to focus on similarities that unite us more than on the differences that divide us’.” Gordon UA
February 12, 2017: N. Korean missle test while at Mar-a-Lago NY Times

February 13, 2017: National Security Advisor Retired Lt. General Michael Flynn resigns LetterThe Atlantic     10 Unanswered Questions after ResignationRT Calls it retirement, but Pence “believed Mr. Flynn lied to him by saying he had not discussed the topic of sanctions on a call with the Russian ambassador in late December”.  NY Times      “The Washington Post breaks another story: Then-acting Attorney General Sally Yates had warned the White House in late January that Flynn had mischaracterized his December conversation with the Russian ambassador, and that it made him vulnerable to Russian blackmail. Later that evening, Flynn resigns. “Bill Moyers    Washington Post

February 14, 2017:Sean Spicer admitted Trump knew Flynn misled them for weeks.  CBS Press Conference   CBSSean “Spicer denies that Trump or his campaign had any contacts with Russia during the election. The New York Times reports that American intelligence and law enforcement agencies have intercepted repeated communications between Trump campaign officials and other Trump associates and senior Russian intelligence and government officials. “Mother Jones”“The New York Times corroborates the Russian deputy foreign minister’s admission on Nov. 10. Based on information from four current and former American officials, The Times reports, “Members of the Trump campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior intelligence officials in the year before the election.” Meanwhile, advisers to Attorney General Jeff Sessions reiterates his earlier position: Sessions sees no need to recuse himself from the ongoing Justice Department investigations into the Trump/Russia connections.”Bill Moyers    

February 15, 2017: FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe “called [White House Chief of Staff Reince] Priebus early that morning and said The New York Times story vastly overstates what the FBI knows about the contacts.” CNN “During a joint press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump does not answer a question about potential connections between his campaign and Russia during the election. He blames Flynn’s ouster on leaks. This is a different position than the one taken by the White House previously: that Flynn was asked to resign because he misled Pence about his communication with the Russian ambassador.  Reince Priebus, Trump’s chief of staff, asks the FBI to publicly knock-down media reports that the US intelligence community was investigating the Trump campaign’s alleged contacts with Russia intelligence operatives during the election. The FBI refuses to do so. The administration then enlists the help of the intelligence community and several members of Congress, including Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.)—the chairmen of the Senate and House intelligence committees, both of which are conducting investigations into Trump’s Russia connections—to call media outlets to counter stories about contacts between Trump staffers and Russians.                In an appearance on PBS Newshour, Carter Page denies that he had any meetings with Russian officials in 2016.”Mother Jones  Trump Administration sought to enlist intelligence officials, key lawmakers to counter Russia stories” Washington Post“That evening, The New York Times reports that Trump is planning to appoint Stephen Feinberg, a billionaire hedge fund manager and Trump ally, to lead “a broad review of American intelligence agencies.” Feinberg has no prior experience in intelligence or government, but he has close ties to Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner.”   NPR Transcript & Analysis of Netanyahu/Trump  “Trump tweets a series of outbursts attacking the Trump/Russia connection as “nonsense,” diverting attention to “un-American” leaks in which “information is illegally given out by ‘intelligence’ like candy.” Shortly thereafter, Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz and other congressional Republicans formally ask the Justice Department’s inspector general to investigate the leaks, but they and their GOP colleagues resist the creation of an independent bipartisan commission with the power to convene public hearings and discover the truth about the Trump/Russia connections.Bill Moyers Around this date, Trump appealed to FBI Director Comey, who made notes of his conversations with Trump. The memo stated, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go,” Mr. Trump told Mr. Comey, according to the memo. “He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.” NY Times

February 16, 2017: Read the full transcript of Trump’s first solo press conference CNBC

“At a news conference, Trump is asked whether anyone in his campaign had been in contact with Russia. He replies, “Nobody that I know of.” He also denies having any contact with Russia, saying, ‘Russia is a ruse. I have nothing to do with Russia.’”Mother Jones       “Trump continues his diversionary twitter assault on the intelligence leaks that were fueling intensified scrutiny of his Russia connections. At Trump’s afternoon press conference, he says: “I own nothing in Russia. I have no loans in Russia. I don’t have any deals in Russia… Russia is fake news. Russia — this is fake news put out by the media.” Reporters ask repeatedly about anyone else involved with Trump or his campaign. “No,” Trump says. ‘Nobody that I know of.’”Mother Jones    

February 17, 2017: “FBI Director James Comey meets with members of the Senate intelligence committee. That same day, the committee sends letters to more than a dozen agencies, groups, and individuals, asking them to preserve all communications related to the committee’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election.”Mother Jones      Senate Intelligence Committee requested Roger Stone keep all hard and electronic copies for investigation, signed by Sen. Richard Burr, R-NC and Sen. Mark Warner, D-VA. Stone denied receipt until March 18.CNN “Senators want Russia-related materials preserved. NY Times

February 19, 2017:“During an interview on Fox News, Priebus denies that the Trump camp had any contact with Russia.”Mother Jones

February 20, 2017: After spending a week choosing Flynn’s replacement (The Hill), Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster is appointed National Security Advisor   LA TimesVitaly Churkin, Russia’s Ambassador to the UN, “the diplomat suffered from cardiac arrest while at the Russian Mission on East 67th Street..

For a decade, it was Churkin who raised his arm to veto numerous resolutions ranging from the Syrian crisis to the Malaysia Airlines crash over eastern Ukraine. He stood firm in supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime against Western attacks. And he cited US policy in Libya as a symbol of failure by Western countries who favored regime change.”CNN

February 20-26, 2017: “Trump continues his attacks on the media and the FBI leaks that were generating the Trump/Russia stories. “[Added March 3, 2017]Bill MoyersFebruary 21, 2017:March 23, 2017: Paul Manafort’s attorney offered an interview to the House Intelligence Committee. CNNAngela Chen “has ties to important members of the Chinese ruling elite and to an organization considered a front group for Chinese military intelligence. Chen, who also goes by the names Xiao Yan Chen and Chen Yu, purchased the four-bedroom condo in the Trump Park Avenue building in New York City on February 21 (2017 for $15.8 million). As Mother Jones first reportedMilo Yiannopoulos resigned from Breitbart.  The Hill

February 23, 2017: “In a rare public appearance, Bannon spoke at the conservative political conference CPAC on February 23, 2017, alongside White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. Bannon outlined the Trump administration’s agenda as focusing on “national security and sovereignty,” “economic nationalism” and “deconstruction of the administrative state.” He also railed against the mainstream media as “the opposition party” and stated that the Trump administration was dedicated to implementing the president’s campaign promises. “He’s laid out an agenda with those speeches with the promises he made and our job every day is to just to execute on that . . . he’s maniacally focused on that,” Bannon said.” Biography.comC-SPAN Video

February 24, 2017:FBI interviewed Michael Flynn per Sally Yates’s testimony May 8, 2017.Washington Post reports that “The Trump administration has enlisted senior members of the intelligence community and Congress in efforts to counter news stories about Trump associates’ ties to Russia, a politically charged issue that has been under investigation by the FBI as well as lawmakers now defending the White House. Acting at the behest of the White House, the officials made calls to news organizations last week in attempts to challenge stories about alleged contacts between members of President Trump’s campaign team and Russian intelligence operatives, U.S. officials said. The calls were orchestrated by the White House after unsuccessful attempts by the administration to get senior FBI officials to speak with news organizations and dispute the accuracy of stories on the alleged contacts with Russia.The White House on Friday acknowledged those interactions with the FBI but did not disclose that it then turned to other officials who agreed to do what the FBI would not — participate in White House-arranged calls with news organizations, including The Washington Post. The effort also involved senior lawmakers with access to classified intelligence about Russia, including Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), the chairmen of the Senate and House intelligence committees. A spokesman for Nunes said that he had already begun speaking to reporters to challenge the story and that, “at the request of a White House communications aide, Chairman Nunes then spoke to an additional reporter and delivered the same message.” Unlike the others, Nunes spoke on the record and was subsequently quoted in the Wall Street Journal. In an interview, Burr acknowledged that he “had conversations about” Russia-related news reports with the White House and engaged with news organizations to dispute articles by the New York Times and CNN that alleged “repeated” or “constant” contact between Trump campaign members and Russian intelligence operatives.” Washington Post

February 25, 2017: “Nigel Farage, ex-leader of the UK Independence Party, key Brexit campaigner and one of Donald Trump’s most visible foreign supporters during and after the presidential campaign, dines with Trump, daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner and Florida Gov. Rick Scott at the Trump International Hotel in Washington.” [Added March 13, 2017]Bill Moyers

February 26, 2017: “NBC’s Chuck Todd notes a pattern: Trump’s attacks on the press followed immediately after a new and unflattering Trump/Russia story breaks. “[Added March 3, 2017]Bill Moyers 

February 27, 2017: “The Guardian reports on evidence that Michael Flynn had communicated with Russian ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak. In response, Nunes gives a statement to reporters saying: “As of right now, I don’t have any evidence of any phone calls … That doesn’t mean they don’t exist, but I don’t have that. And what I’ve been told by many folks is that there’s nothing there …  I want to be very careful that we can’t just go on a witch-hunt against Americansbecause they appear in news stories.” In response to Nunes’s statement, Schiff gives a counter-press conference criticizing Nunes for disclosing information: “When you begin an investigation, you don’t begin by stating what you believe to be the conclusion.” LawfareBlog

February 28, 2017: “On a party line vote, the House Judiciary Committee kills Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s Resolution of Inquiry calling for Trump to provide documents relating to Trump/Russia connections and his business conflicts of interest.          More than 10 days after the Senate Intelligence Committee had requested that the White House and other agencies preserve Trump/Russia-related communications, the White House counsel’s office instructs Trump’s aides to preserve such materials, according to a March 1 report by the Associated Press. “[Added March 3, 2017]Bill Moyers  Nadler


“Republicans on the House judiciary committee vote down a Democrat-sponsored resolution that would have required the Trump administration to disclose information about Trump’s ties to Russia (and his possible financial conflicts of interest).   White House lawyers ask Trump staffers to preserve any materials related to possible Russian interference in the 2016 election.” Mother Jones

March-April 2017 Continued