Yesterday on The Critical Hour, in connection with the flurry of commentary on the latest anti-Russian piece from The Guardian, I explained in some detail how Special Council Robert Mueller helped the Democrats win back the House in 2018. There were other factors in play, of course, but in retrospect, Muellers performance was highly instructive.
An obedient Marine, Mueller saluted and followed orders from a corrupt Justice Department and an FBI with lots of shenanigans and much worse to hide. Not to mention the incessant "guidance" Mueller and team got from an equally corrupt mainstream media, drumming Trump-Russia perfidy into the consciousness of all Americans.
All Mueller had to do was delay announcing that he and his platoon of sharpshooter lawyers could find nothing to prove media accusations that Trump was in Putins pocket. He slow-walked the investigation, allowing the Trump-Putin festering conspiracy charges to infect voters as they went to the polls in Nov. 2018. It worked like a charm. The Dems flipped the House.
Although visibly frail physically, Muller seemed to be fully compos mentis on May 17, 2017, when Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein named him special counsel to investigate alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. No doubt he was aware he was being used. But with the corporate media singing his praises as "universally respected," whats not to like about seizing the limelight by ostentatiously appearing to shun it?
Besides, there was minimal risk to him and his associates, given the overarching prevalence in 2017-2019 of the Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS) with wide swaths of people believing anything derogatory the media told them about Trump and knee-jerkedly disbelieving anything that happened to coincide with something Trump said. (I am sure I am not the only one to have lost some friends who succumbed to the TDS aka "Mad Maddow Disease.")
A short chronology might help explain what went down in 2017-2019:
May 9, 2017: Trump fires FBI Director James Comey
May 16, 2017: NY Times publishes a leak from Comey (via a friend) alleging that Trump put pressure on Comey to go easy on Gen. Flynn. On June 8 Comey explained in testimony to the Senate Intelligence Committee that he believed that the leak "might prompt the appointment of a special counsel" to lead an investigation into Trump-Russia ties. And, mirabile dictu, the following day
May 17, 2017: Rosenstein appoints Comeys old friend and colleague Robert Mueller special counsel
May 19, 2017: FBIs Peter Strzok, in a text to FBI lawyer/paramour Lisa Page, says hes reluctant to join the Mueller investigation because there was "no big there there." Page later told a joint House committee that Strzoks words meant there was no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. Strzok certainly knew whereof he spoke. He had been looking for such evidence for ten months using every trick in the book, including extensive, authorized-on-lies electronic surveillance. See: "Moon-Strzok No More, Lisa Page Spills the Beans."
August, 2017: Strzok is removed from Mueller investigation. (Did Mueller think to check with him about Strzoks own investigation? Did he not learn of his "no-big-there-there" finding?)
Dec. 5, 2017: Testimony of cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike leader, Shawn Henry, reveals that there is no like ZERO technical evidence that the DNC emails published by WikiLeaks came from a hack, by Russia or by anyone else. Mueller no doubt is one who learned quickly of Mr. Henrys bombshell testimony. Otherwise, it fell like the proverbial tree in the forest out of earshot. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff suppressed the testimony until he was forced to release it on May 7, 2020. The NY Times and other Establishment media then took the baton, hiding the testimony through the Nov. 2020 election. Indeed, Henrys testimony is still absent from corporate media. A redux of the "Mueller Slow-Walk."
March 13, 2019: In a formal Memorandum to Attorney General William Barr, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) warn Barr that, given what was already known of the contours of the Mueller investigation report, it should be graded "incomplete" for its "forensics-free findings." (Those interested in technical, but readily understandable, detail are invited to review the section under "Discussion" that appears under the Executive Summary.)
Mach 22, 2019: Mueller gives Barr the results of the investigation.
March 24, 2019: Barr releases a four-page summary of the Mueller report.
April 16, 2019: In a Memorandum for the President, VIPs fault Mueller for drinking the sugar-and-evidence-free Kool-Aid on Russian "interference" and, in particular, refusing to interview Julian Assange.
April 18, 2019: Final Mueller report is published.
April 18, 2019: Glenn Greenwald reacts: "The two-pronged conspiracy theory that has dominated U.S. political discourse for almost three years that (1) Trump, his family and his campaign conspired or coordinated with Russia to interfere in the 2016 election, and (2) Trump is beholden to Russian President Vladimir Putin was not merely rejected today by the final report of Special Counsel Robert Mueller. It was obliterated in an undeniable and definitive manner."
I was tempted to give this article the title: "What did Robert Mueller Know, and When Did He Know It?" That question arose at the end of a talk I gave in Seattle on Aug. 4, 2018, titled "Russia-gate: Can You Handle the Truth?," I suggested that it was taking Mueller so long to complete his investigation simply because "there was no there," so to speak, and that he was insisting on turning over every stone. That was, in retrospect, only half right at best. I had not factored in the mid-term election then just three months away. Mueller did.
Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. His 27-year career as a CIA analyst includes serving as Chief of the Soviet Foreign Policy Branch and preparer/briefer of the Presidents Daily Brief. He is co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS).