Trump Campaign Said To Have 18 Previously Undisclosed Russia Contacts: Reuters

Tyler Durden's picture

Just when it seemed that Trump was about to put the Russian allegations in the rearview mirror, if only for the time being, thanks to the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller tasked with overseeing the federal investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, this morning Reuters reported citing "familiar sources" that "Michael Flynn and other advisers to Donald Trump’s campaign were in contact with Russian officials and others with Kremlin ties in at least 18 calls and emails during the last seven months of the 2016 presidential race." Specifically, the 18 calls and electronic messages took place between April and November 2016, a period that is already in the public domain as being the focus of ongoing investigations, focusing on Flynn and Trump's ex-advisor Paul Manafort.

According to the Reuters sources, "in the conversations during the campaign, Russian officials emphasized a pragmatic, business-style approach and stressed to Trump associates that they could make deals by focussing on common economic and other interests and leaving contentious issues aside"

On the surface the story is a recap of what is already known: as Reuters itself points out inside the report, these previously undisclosed interactions "form part of the record now being reviewed by FBI and congressional investigators" which has now culminated with the appointment of a special counsel: one way or another, if Trump indeed colluded with Russia, as the daily barrage of media reports suggests, we will know shortly.

Furthermore, as Reuters also explicitly states, the sources "had seen no evidence of wrongdoing or collusion between the campaign and Russia in the communications reviewed so far", something which various FBI personnel have confirmed on more than one occasions under oath. 

However, it's a Russia story, it has details, it names Trump (and it's not from the WaPo or NYT) so as one would expect, early traders were transfixed by it, and have sent risk sliding to session lows.

Here are some more details from Reuters:

Six of the previously undisclosed contacts described to Reuters were phone calls between Kislyak and Trump advisers, including Flynn, Trump’s first national security adviser, three current and former officials said. Conversations between Flynn and Kislyak accelerated after the Nov. 8 vote as the two discussed establishing a back channel for communication between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin that could bypass the U.S. national security bureaucracy, which both sides considered hostile to improved relations, four current U.S. officials said.

Furthermore, Reuters also notes that while "contact with foreign officials during a campaign was not unusual, the number of interactions between Trump aides and Russian officials and others with links to Putin was exceptional."

“It’s rare to have that many phone calls to foreign officials, especially to a country we consider an adversary or a hostile power,” Richard Armitage, a Republican and former deputy secretary of state, told Reuters.

Reuters adds that these "discussions focused on mending U.S.-Russian economic relations strained by sanctions imposed on Moscow, cooperating in fighting Islamic State in Syria and containing a more assertive China." Some further details:

In addition to the six phone calls involving Kislyak, the communications described to Reuters involved another 12 calls, emails or text messages between Russian officials or people considered to be close to Putin and Trump campaign advisers. One of those contacts was by Viktor Medvedchuk, a Ukrainian oligarch and politician, according to one person with detailed knowledge of the exchange and two others familiar with the issue.

 

It was not clear with whom Medvedchuk was in contact within the Trump campaign but the themes included U.S.-Russia cooperation, the sources said. Putin is godfather to Medvedchuk’s daughter. Medvedchuk denied having any contact with anyone in the Trump campaign.

 

"I am not acquainted with any of Donald Trump's close associates, therefore no such conversation could have taken place," he said in an email to Reuters.

Beyond Medvedchuk and Kislyak, the identities of the other Putin-linked participants in the contacts remain classified and the names of Trump advisers other than Flynn have been “masked” in intelligence reports on the contacts because of legal protections on their privacy as American citizens. However, officials can request that they be revealed for intelligence purposes.

On the Ukraine angle, it is likely that Medvedchuk communications took place with Paul Manafort, who was fired by Trump long ago. As for Flynn, who is the only campaign individual "unmasked" as part of the revelations, he too was sacked by Trump just three weeks into Trump's administration.

At its core, the Reuters report is a recap of what is already known, while putting some numbers to already known communications between the Trump campaign and various Russian individuals. As to whether this is a smoking gun, the good news is that with Mueller now supervising the probe, an answer will be provided in the not too distant future.

Expect an imminent response from the White House as well as something from Trump himself, who has been surprisingly quiet on Twitter over the past 24 hours.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
JRobby's picture

Our new FCC chairman with an interesting name will take care of all of that while he is shutting the internet down.

Ignorance is bliss's picture

"undisclosed sources"
Probably written on a toilet seat somewhere in D.C.

Omega_Man's picture

Trump needs to double down and invite more Russians to the white house and also start a krystal night

 

We must fight the jew media in USA

lester1's picture

"familiar? sources"

 

Wtf kind of weak ass reporting is that??

lester1's picture

My "familiar sources" say Seth Rich was the DNC email leaker and was murdered by a Clinton paid assassin !

VinceFostersGhost's picture

 

 

 

Soooooooo.........what's this about Seth Rich?

 

I'm thinking maybe that should be on the news.

VinceFostersGhost's picture

 

 

Tap tap.......is this thing on?

VinceFostersGhost's picture

 

 

Molly geez.........Seth Rich........is clearly progressive kriptonite.

 

They won't even touch it man!

VinceFostersGhost's picture

 

 

PS.......yes......I'm laughing.

 

I'M LAUGHING AT YOU!!!

 

Chime right in......if you want too.....

 

Was it 44k posts to Wiki......or 45k posts.

 

Correct me.....if I'm wrong.

 

 

Is anybody out there?

Cassandra.Hermes's picture

For Trump and his team of advisors lying is the point. The more blatant the lie, the easier it is to hijack reality and assert power over the truth.

Scanderbeg's picture

Another MSM Muh Russia Shill.

Listen up, we don't want war with Russia on behalf of Israhell and the Demonrat party.

Now go strap on a vagina helmet and skull fuck your mother with it.

Omega_Man's picture

block WH access to jew media

Scanderbeg's picture

"Familiar sources"

By familiar do they mean anonymous or illegal leaks? The kind of heresay that would never be valid in any court?

They still admit they have nothing. While any detente with Russia is heresy despite Obama mocking the threat 4 years ago plus Hildabeasts "reset" and Podesta ties.

If they really had hard evidence it would have been leaked already after spying on a Trump for a year.

Just more daily muh Russia from MSM ZioVermin. 

Kefeer's picture

On the basis of 2 or more reliable witnesses a matter is established - none of this passes the test unlike that Hildabeast's record.  Facts do not matter anymore - sad.

NoWayJose's picture

Furthermore, Reuters also notes that while "contact with foreign officials during a campaign was not unusual, the number of interactions between Trump aides and Russian officials and others with links to Putin was exceptional."

Could I see the numbers from the Harding, Lincoln, and Taft administrations please?

Paul Kersey's picture

This whole Russian election meddling probe is only being used to get to Trump's alleged money laundering for Russian mobsters. Once that gets put under a microscope, Trump will be locked away in a closet, so that the Administration, chosen by Kushner and filled with Goldmanites, klepto-corporatists, neocons and other species of Deep State parasites, can ram through its agenda of wealth extraction, without getting derailed by Trump's untimely and frequent legislation-killing outbursts. Deep State doesn't necessarily want to pull Trump out of office, it just wants him gagged and totally neutered.

swmnguy's picture

Yep, the election thing is a smokescreen.  Everybody in the White House, with the exception of Trump himself, appears to be owned.  Trump has left the door open and the Swamp Things have slithered in and taken over.

I'm reminded of how actual Leftists felt once they realized who Obama really was.  I tried to tell them, back in May of 2008 when I saw Obama had gotten more in campaign contributions from Wall Street corporations than either McCain or Hillary (who was the sitting Senator from New York at the time, and spouse of the biggest servant of Finance ever to have been President, at the time).  And then again in October when both McCain and Obama promised, if elected, to nominate one Timothy F. Geithner as Secretary of the Treasury.

Those Leftists sure got pissy with me then, as Trump fans are getting pissy with anyone pointing out what's being revealed right now, right in front of us.

Sessions is doing as he was directed, bringing in Rod Rosenstein to do the job on Comey and then bring in Mueller.  This didn't come up over the past 21 days.  As you say, they might not get rid of Trump outright, but they're going to defang him and if he quits, so much the better for the GOP faction of the Deep State.  The fact that everyone supported Trump when he shot off the Tomahawk missiles was a big "tell."  The Deep State doesn't care about the policies or the politics of it it all.  This is just about power.

Sick Underbelly's picture

Any links or sources for the "alleged money laundering for Russian mobsters"?

I'd like to explore it, to see what you have.

Victor999's picture

"18 calls and emails during the last seven months of the 2016 presidential race"

"in the conversations during the campaign, Russian officials emphasized a pragmatic, business-style approach and stressed to Trump associates that they could make deals by focussing on common economic and other interests and leaving contentious issues aside"

 

"form part of the record now being reviewed by FBI and congressional investigators" who have been probing alleged Russian interference and that furthermore, the sources "had seen no evidence of wrongdoing or collusion between the campaign and Russia in the communications reviewed so far."

 

"Conversations between Flynn and Kislyak accelerated after the Nov. 8 vote as the two discussed establishing a back channel for communication between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin that could bypass the U.S. national security bureaucracy, which both sides considered hostile to improved relations, four current U.S. officials said."

 

"Reuters adds that these "discussions focused on mending U.S.-Russian economic relations strained by sanctions imposed on Moscow, cooperating in fighting Islamic State in Syria and containing a more assertive China." "

 

 

 

Correct me if I am mistaken, but does anyone see any reference at all to any possible effort to influence the US elections process in the above?  Anyone see anything other than an effort to re-establish good relations based on sound business principles and improving communications between leaders of the two countries?

 

And how much is all this fucking useless noise costing the US in time, chaos, money and credibility?

beijing expat's picture

Of course not. That's why we have CNN and MSNBC and the papers. Their job is to screech until the people are confused.

BarkingCat's picture

So wait, I am confused as shit; did Russia invade Ukraine or are they considered so close together that having contacts with a Ukrainian businessman is akin to talking to the Russians.

 

I hope that none of people on Trump's team called anyone from Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Kazakhstan or Georgia.

That would be a clear indication that we are dealing with the Soviet Union again.

beijing expat's picture

They want their war, and if they get it, you die.

These people are insane.

A few weeks ago, Russia and China said that they had concluded that the US was preparing for a first strike and would prepare accordingly. With a first strike of their own?

Trump is all that stands between you and the deep states sinister plan for global destruction.

Omega_Man's picture

Trump fire all the evil fuckers now,,,,purge 

sister tika's picture

The meme that talking to the Russians (without Congressional or Pentagon approval) or even showing Mr. Putin respect is a criminal offense must stop.

This political nonsense will be touted FOREVER if we (the People) do not denounce/discredit it for the propaganda that it is. This LIE is getting very old and stale.

Last of the Middle Class's picture

Absolutely no evidence of wrongdoing, however we're going to initiate impeachment proceedings. Turn up the volume MSM you're going to need it to overthrow this president.

gespiri's picture

Are they also investigating if the Hillary campaign also had Russian connections?  

Secret Weapon's picture

How about Israeli connections?

shimmy's picture

Can't wait for when Mueller reports there is nothing and the libtard media keeps pushing this shit. Talk about embarrassing. 

pc_babe's picture

This useful tool wont be able to finish his work until a week after the 2020 elections. Staff to hire, reports to review, meetings to be held, cerebral onanism to enjoy. Death by a 1000 cuts.

Meanwhile the real crimes of OBAMA, HOLDER, LYNCH and CLINTONs
... Trumps screwed himself thinking he could buy into the Washington Club (the only one where he is not a member) by signaling he would not prosecute some of its players.

The problem -- he is negotiating with himself and loosing.

Omega_Man's picture

Trump needs a second cia to purge evil  jew media....this is war

Cardinal Fang's picture

Even though the article doesn't mention it, I do like the way the Russian meddling meme was used to cover up the political use of NSA spying on Americans.

Nice little misdirection scheme and this article is part of it.

Omega_Man's picture

be nice for trumpians to start civil war...start with jew media and restore order 

Kefeer's picture

I'm sick and tired of these damn politicians being owned by the "deep state".  I hope a majority of people do not buy into this circus.

This shows how far we have digressed.  How many emails etc did Hillary send and receive in regards to Russia and Uranium?  We know she broke multiple laws and yet so many voted for "crooked Hildabeast" - may she die a miserable death for all her crimes against humanity.

I hope they all die and go straight to hell!

Omega_Man's picture

This is what Trump gets for not firing thousands of Hillary supporters and jews... he must fire them now and appoint loyal Trump supporters.... just start firing and don't stop 

Secret Weapon's picture

I wonder how many contacts either party had with Israel during the election? 

beijing expat's picture

The real question is;

How do they know?

Obamas spying, that's how.

Obama Clapper Brennan and Rice are Traitors and must be prosecuted.

The real story is the spying. If they get away with the spying, the Republic is finished.

El_Puerco's picture

The bonafides in all of this, is Robert Mueller was appointed an extension by Birther Obama to head the FBI, until Comey would take control to cover up the Obama Clinton Bush crimes.
Fully remember the stolen Minnesota election by Al Franken giving Obama 60 votes in the Senate for Obamacare, the fact that Justice Scalia stated that the Supreme Court was being spied upon, and the 10 million votes flipped by Obama to steal the White House, as much as Obama being a foreign subject of Indonesia and Britain, all covered up by Robert Mueller in heading the FBI.

On May 12, 2011, it was reported that President Obama had asked Director Mueller to continue at the helm of the FBI for another 2 years beyond his normal term, expiring on September 4, 2013

Omega_Man's picture

All israeli contacts must be shown..... deport

pc_babe's picture

A better solution omega, would be to nuke Damascus, Baghdad, Tehran, Istanbul, Riyadh and a few other of the ass-sniffing sh*t-holes you seem to so favor.

gespiri's picture

Another fake news.  What?.......from another anonymous source?!!

dexter_morgan's picture

As James Carville said.  SO WHAT

Northern Flicker's picture

Now that the country has gone non-communist, the whole of the US State Dept seems to hate Russia. Who would have figured?  In any case, why would Trump want to deal with these people? They are not diplomats - more than 50 of them wanted to go to war in Syria. They should all be canned and sent to the 1st Marine Corps.

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/17/world/middleeast/syria-assad-obama-airstrikes-diplomats-memo.html

 

TaxEstate's picture

"others with Kremlin ties".... In other news, 'sources' have stated with 99.999% certainty that Kevin Bacon was involved as an intermediary between Trump campaign officials and those with Kremlin ties....

My sources tell me the media is full of shit, and throwing as much of it against the wall as possible, to see what sticks.

 

Wahooo's picture

I'm glad someone in the US was talking to the Russians, even if it means Putin is our true President. Sure beats a Rodent or Kenyan.

bluskyes's picture

When will the charges of Zionist collusiion surface?

JarMyMetric's picture

HAHA  When will Ivanka come over to my house and give me a blow job?

pc_babe's picture

Meanwhile Clinton, Nuland and Pyatt who fomented a coup ... press silence in the echo chamber is deafening

Omega_Man's picture

we need open warfare against zios