The ‘Russian State Apparatus’

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Absolutely gripping and relevant article in today’s Daily Beast. Three questions. And then the usual diatribe:

1) Who is releasing all these documents? Is it the Russians? Are they trying to embarrass Trump and the Republicans? And, if so, why? Aren’t they supposed to be mates? Or, is it a more complex play? Something has to give; so, feed the media minnows; in order to protect the bigger fish?

2) Is the ‘Russian state apparatus’ that set up all these meetings and movie screenings the same apparatus that provided supposedly damning information on Trump to the former British MI6 agent, Christopher Steele, as he compiled what became known as the Buzzfeed Dossier, first for other Republican Presidential candidates, and later for Hillary Clinton? In other words, are the Russians playing all sides, or just Trump?

3) Why is Magnitsky important?

(Ok. Sue me. More than three questions.)

Last question first. Google ‘Magnitsky Act,’ ‘Sergei Magnitsky,’ ‘Bill Browder’ and ‘Hermitage Capital’ on Wikipedia. That will give you a primer.

Contrary to the mistaken interpretation of most of the mainstream media, the Magnitsky Act has little to do with human rights violations in Russia, and everything to do with striking at the heart of Russian money-laundering (read through the links in this note, and you will understand why this is important).

Money-laundering was and is important to Putin, corrupt Russian government officials and the Russian mob (obviously). It was and is also important to Donald Trump, who has made himself available to the Russians as one of their primary money-laundering routes for some thirty years. Not least through and into New York real estate.

Putin not only wanted sanctions lifted for the obvious reasons. He wanted them out of the way to sweeten the Rosneft deal Trump was brokering for Putin, for a fee of some $500 million. Lift sanctions, and the share price of Rosneft goes through the roof. Making extra money for the Russians, Putin, Trump and Qatar.

As I am beginning to believe, it is highly possible that Putin initially demonstrated no especial favoritism to any particular US Presidential candidate. But that Trump became his favorite: (1) Because he proved to be so receptive; and (2) Not least because of the Rosneft deal.

In any event, whatever the outcome of the US Presidential election, Putin required as much progress as possible on lifting sanctions before that election, in order to move the Rosneft deal along. That, in turn, meant that his apparatus was especially focused on Republican legislators, since they controlled (and control) both chambers of Congress.

I’m not sure that Browder, Magnitsky, Hermitage Capital and the $230 million laundered were all that important to Putin, per se. Although the subsequent Magnitsky Act was important, for the reasons stated above.

But. During the course of 2017, the New York trial involving the Russian-connected company at the New York realty end of the $230 million launder, that trial was stopped, possibly for political reasons. Certainly, in March 2017, the Manhattan US Attorney who had begun the case, Preet Bharara, was fired by Donald Trump.

So, are Browder, Magnitsky and Hermitage more important to Trump than we are currently aware? Could this have anything to do with the fact that their story could be a crucial element in understanding Russian money-laundering into New York real estate?

Or. Again. Slightly contradicting myself. Could they be more important to Putin than we know? When I was researching my own book, Maggie’s Hammer, my Israeli Intelligence source made regular reference to a single $28 million arms deal that my mate brokered with Iraq.

I could not understand why the constant reference to this one deal. In the context of some $60 billion in arms sold by the West to Saddam Hussein in the Eighties. Until I realized that the implication was that this one deal was Margaret Thatcher’s personal sweet deal. Her private pension fund. Could it be that something like this is the hidden importance of Magnitsky and Hermitage?

At which point, I hope that this note offers some small continuing hint of why one needs to look beyond all the salacious gossip about Don Jr., his Russian mates, and Netflix moments in the US Congress, in order to find the deeper truth.

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Published in: on July 21, 2017 at 9:37 am  Leave a Comment  

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