An older post of mine from December 15, 2017, The Inspector General’s Implied Oversight has been receiving some attention recently.
Several different points were made in the piece but three primary ones are as follows:
- IG Horowitz’s discovery of Page/Strzok texts happened on or before July 14, 2017.
- Horowitz formally began a new line of investigative pursuit on July 14, 2017.
- Horowitz informed Mueller that he was looking into his team on July 27, 2017.
Given what we know from the McCabe OIG Report, Horowitz probably first saw the Strzok/Page texts in late June or early July 2017. Late May 2017 is possible. Recall:
McCabe first lied to the FBI’s Inspection Division on May 9, 2017.
McCabe authorized Page to share information with reporter Devlin Barrett – and Page did so thinking she had been granted legal/official authorization to do so.
Page, when confronted with McCabe’s denials, produced texts refuting the Deputy FBI Director’s deception. This led to the Inspector General uncovering the thousands of texts between Strzok and Page.
At some point, Lisa Page contradicted McCabe’s assertion to INSD – leading to her producing texts to prove her story to IG. Likely happened before July 14, 2017.
From 12/14/17: https://t.co/y62D7FahQC
— Jeff @ themarketswork (@themarketswork) April 13, 2018
“Special Counsel” is Lisa Page.
Horowitz’s discoveries led him to initiate a new angle to his investigation. It also led him to notify Mueller of his findings on July 27, 2017:
On July 27, 2017, upon our identification of many of the political text messages, the Inspector General met with the Deputy Attorney General and the Special Counsel to inform them of the texts that we had discovered, and provided them with a significant number of the texts, so that they could take any management action they deemed appropriate.
Mueller had formally been on the job for two months. On July 27, 2017 the Inspector General informed the Special Counsel he was now investigating Mueller’s group.
What happened next is interesting.
George Papadopoulos was arrested on the same day. He flew in from Germany for the event.
Tracybeanz did a short thread on this incorporating my December article:
1. The other day, @nameredacted7 had introduced a link between my work on Papadopoulos arrest, and Peter Strzok. Thanks to an email I received from an inquiring mind, I went digging to answer the question of whether or not the IG has oversight of the SC
— Tracybeanz (@tracybeanz) June 3, 2018
Specifically, Papadopoulos was arrested on July 27, 2017 at Dulles airport at 7pm in the evening. He flew in from Munich, Germany.
He was booked the next day at 1:45am. He was checked out to “federal authority” at 8:27am on July 28, 2017. No warrant was used. The entire event appeared to be rushed:
Papadopoulos’ arrest seems to have been the product of some haste. Indeed, when he was arrested at Dulles Airport on July 27 after coming off a flight from Munich, prosecutors had no warrant for him and no indictment or criminal complaint. The complaint would be filed the following morning and approved by Howell in Washington.
And when prosecutors filed the complaint the next day they got a spoken order from Howell to seal it, but followed up with a written request that they could take to the magistrate in Alexandria, where they showed up almost an hour later than she expected.
All of it suggests something of a scramble, rather than a carefully prepared plan to take Papadopoulos into custody.
On the same day Mueller is notified of the IG’s awareness of Page & Strzok, Papadopoulos just “happened” to fly in that evening from Germany.
I’ve yet to find a stated reason for Papadopoulos’ trip. The gate-to-gate flight time from Munich to Dulles averages 9 hours and ten minutes. A phone call resulting in a same-day flight is possible…
Papadopoulos’ arrest is suspiciously close to the August 2, 2017 revised “Scope of Investigation & Definition of Authority” Memo that Rosenstein quietly issued to Mueller.
Time for a new Papadopoulos timeline:
- December 2015 to Mid-February 2016 – Papadopoulos works for Ben Carson’s Campaign. No one seems to remember meeting Papadopoulos directly. Some reports state Carson recommended Papadopoulos for the Trump Team.
- November 2015 – Mifsud appears to have joined London Centre of International Law Practice (LCILP).
- December 28 2015 – Strzok text: “You get all our oconus lures approved?”
- Late February 2016 – Papadopoulos appears to have joined LCILP after leaving Ben Carson’s campaign. Some reports indicate Papadopoulos joined in November 2015 – the same time as Mifsud (h/t ChainsawSue). They reportedly never cross paths or meet until March 14, 2016.
- Early March 2016 – Fusion approaches DNC law firm Perkins Coie about being hired to continue opposition research into the Trump Campaign.
- March 9 2016 – NSA Director Rogers becomes aware of improper access to raw FISA data.
- March 9 2016 – Page sends text referencing “HUGE f-up”.
- March 14 2016 – Papadopoulos first meets Mifsud in Italy – approximately one week after finding out he will be joining the Trump team.
- March 16 2016 – Strzok text: “Our guy is talking.”
- March 21 2016 – Carter Page & George Papadopoulos join the Trump Campaign as advisors on foreign policy.
- March 24 2016 – Papadopoulos, Mifsud, Olga Polonskaya and unknown fourth party meet in a London cafe.
- April 2016 – Brennan is shown information from Baltic State Intelligence Agency.
- April 2016 – National Security Agency (NSA) Director Rogers orders NSA compliance officer to run full audit on 702 NSA compliance.
- April 2016 – Fusion GPS hired by Perkins Coie on behalf of the DNC.
- April 14-May 10 2016 – Papadopoulos leaves position at London Centre of International Law Practice (LCILP). Details on this are vague.
- April 18 2016 – Mike Rogers shuts down FBI/DOJ contractor access to the FISA Search System.
- April 18 2016 – No Strzok/Page texts occur – or have been made public – on either April 17 or April 18 2016.
- April 18 2016 – Date DNC says they were hacked.
- April 18 2016 – Mifsud introduces Papadopoulos to Ivan Timofeev, an official at a state-sponsored think tank called Russian International Affairs Council.
- April 26 2016 – Mifsud tells Papadopoulos he’s met with high-level Russian government officials who have “dirt” on Clinton. Papadopoulos will tell the FBI he learned of the emails prior to joining the Trump Campaign.
- April 27 2016 – Papadopoulos emails Trump Campaign Senior Policy Advisor: “Have some interesting messages coming in from Moscow about a trip when the time is right.”
- April 27 2016 – Papadopoulos “emails a high-ranking official of the Trump Campaign “to discuss Russia’s interest in hosting Mr. Trump.”
- April 30 2016 – Strzok text: “And now we’ve switched from the Patriot Act to a wire carrying current.”
- May 4 2016 – Papadopoulos gives his interview to the London Times. It is not well-received in London or the Trump Camp.
- May 4 2016 – The Russian MFA Connection sends an email that stated: “I have just talked to my colleagues from the MFA. The[y] are open for cooperation. One of the options is to make a meeting for you at the North America Desk, if you are in Moscow.”
- May 5 2016 – Papadopoulos has a phone call with the Campaign Supervisor, and then forwards the May 4 MFA Email to him, adding to the top of the email: “Russia updates.”
- May 10 2016 – Papadopoulos meets with Australian Diplomat Alexander Downer. It is Downer who seeks out the meeting.
- May 13 2016 – Mifsud emails Papadopoulos an update of “recent conversations”.
- May 14 2016 – Papadopoulos emails the High-Ranking Campaign Official and states that the ” Russian government ha[s] also relayed to me that they are interested in hosting Mr. Trump.”
- May 21 2016 – Papadopoulos emails another high-ranking Campaign official, with the subject line “Request from Russia to meet Mr. Trump.”
- June 1 2016 – Papadopoulos emails the High-Ranking Campaign Official and asked about Russia.
- Mid June-Mid August 2016 – Papadopoulos pursues an “off the record” meeting between one or more Campaign representatives and “members of president putin’s office and the mfa.”
- July 22 2016 – DNC emails released.
- July 22 2016 – Australia supposedly tells FBI of Papadopoulos/Downer meeting – this is the stated point at which Papadopoulos lands on FBI’s radar. Note: Kim Strassel has reported that Downer passed the information directly to the US Embassy in London.
- July 31 2016 – FBI opens Counterintelligence Investigation.
- September 2 2016 – Halper contacts Papadopoulos – offering to pay him to write a paper and inviting him to London. Papadopoulos does so later that month, receiving $3,000 in payment.
- September 13 2016 – Papadopoulos accepts a meeting with Stefan Halper. Halper, who has connections to CIA & UK Intelligence, asked Papadopoulos: “George, you know about hacking the emails from Russia, right?” Halper has been outed as the FBI’s source.
- January 27 2017 – Papadopoulos interviewed by FBI, which results in his eventual indictment for lying to FBI.
- February 8-12 2017 – Mifsud speaks with FBI. Mifsud is never charged.
- February 16 2017 – Papadopoulos interviewed again by FBI (item 32).
- February 17 2017 – Papadopoulos deactivates Facebook account (item 33).
- February 23 2017 – Papadopoulos changes cell phone numbers (item 34).
- May 9 2017 – FBI Director Comey fired by President Trump.
- May 17 2017 – Mueller appointed as Special Counsel. Lisa Page joins Special Counsel Team.
- July 14 2017 – On or before this time Inspector General Horowitz discovers the Page/Strzok texts.
- July 27 2017 – IG Horowitz notifies Mueller of Strzok/Page texts.
- July 27 2017 – Papadopoulos arrested by FBI at Dulles Airport on flight from Germany. Landed at 7:00pm. No warrant is issued. Papadopoulos enters city detention center in Alexandria, Virginia, at 1:45am the next day.
- July 28 2017 – Papadopoulos appears in court. He does not have an attorney and his case is sealed. Papadopoulos agrees to cooperate with Mueller. No contact with Trump Campaign is allowed (h/t TracyBeanz).
- Early August 2017 – Strzok removed from Special Counsel Investigation.
- Summer 2017 – Mueller interviews Ivan Timofeev whom Mifsud connected to Papadopoulos on April 18 2017.
- August 2 2017 – Rosenstein issues Mueller a revised “Scope of Investigation & Definition of Authority” Memo. It is heavily redacted.
- August 2017 – Trump Campaign hands over emails from Papadopoulos to Special Counsel.
- October 5 2017 – Papadopoulos enters a guilty plea under seal. He is booked at this time. Court Doc signed by Jeannie Rhee, Andrew Goldstein, Aaron Zelinsky on Mueller’s behalf (h/t TracyBeanz).
- October 30 2017 – Court unseals Papadopoulos Case – shows he repeatedly discussed his Russia-related contacts with top campaign officials.
Two specific items of note. Nick Falco found this today:
1) BOMBSHELL- From DECEMBER 2015–The word LURES is redacted by FBI but not OIG
OCONUS= Outside Contiguous US
LURES= In this context LURES = SPIES – multiple
Is this an admission that the FBI wanted to run a baited Sting Op using foreign agents against Trump? pic.twitter.com/OtLxlOEGsV
— Falco (@Nick_Falco) June 4, 2018
Here’s the Strzok text:
“You get all our oconus lures approved?
As Falco notes, the FBI originally redacted the word “Lures” out. Note the plural reference. The OIG removed the redaction…
Undercover Huber notes an increasingly relevant March 16, 2016 reference to “Our guy”:
PETER STRZOK in FBI counterintel wanted approval for “LURES” “outside the contiguous United States” in late Dec 2015
🎣Just after Flynn/PUTIN dinner
🎣6 mths b4 “Crossfire Hurricane”
🎣3 mths b4 “our boy is talking” text of Mar 2016 (around the time MIFSUD met PAPADOPOULOS) https://t.co/MQ3BLd2z5t
— Undercover Huber (@JohnWHuber) June 4, 2018
Here’s the March 16, 2016 Strzok text:
“Our guy is talking…”
And don’t forget this April 30, 2016 Strzok text:
“And now we’ve switched from the Patriot Act to a wire carrying current.”
I have some questions:
- Was Papadopoulos ordered to fly back to Dulles by Mueller.
- If not, what was the reason for the coincidental timing.
- When, exactly, did Papadopoulos start cooperating with Mueller. Was it after his arrest on July 27, 2017. Was it after his FBI Interview on January 27, 2017. Was it prior to the January interview.
- What is under the redactions in the August 2 2017 revised “Scope of Investigation & Definition of Authority” Memo. Is it related to Papadopoulos’ arrest.
- Why was Papadopoulos ordered to have no contact with the Trump Campaign – Papadopoulos was supposedly cooperating with Mueller.
- Did Papadopoulos ever wear a wire.
- What was the specified period of no contact with Trump Campaign – was there a point at which contact was allowed.
- When did the FBI first become aware of Papadopoulos.
- When did Downer relay his information on Papadopoulos to the US London Embassy.
- Why did Papadopoulos lie about the timing of his meetings with Mifsud.
- Why did Papadopoulos try so many times to arrange meetings between Russian contacts and Trump Campaign officials.
- Who are the “Lures”. Who are the targets.
- Who is “Our guy”.
- Who or what was the “wire carrying current”.
I could keep going but I’ll leave it there. This whole mess just got a lot stranger.
There are any number of conclusions that can be drawn. But, for me, it’s too early to do so. At this juncture I’m choosing to let the strangeness of facts stand on display.
Note: Chuck Ross just reported on new details provided by Papadopoulos’ wife, Simone Mangiante, who claims he was not involved in Russia Collusion.
Thanks to Knowitall for piquing my curiosity.
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