Several US intelligence contacts have told CNN and the New York Times that there were NSA intercepts of phone contact between Trump campaign workers and staff such as Paul Manafort (Trump’s Campaign Manager) with Russian intelligence agents.
Reportedly (CNN, CBS, and New York times) the agencies became alarmed when they heard Russian agents telling Trump supporters they "had special access to Trump."
The world has seen how reliable Kellyanne Conway’s statements to the press are so what did she have to say about any contacts between anyone in the campaign and any Russians at all?
She denied it ever happened, but, of course, we already know that now disgraced and ousted White House National Security adviser Michael Flynn had extensive contacts, including six phone calls to the Russian Ambassador on a single day.
WH only concerned with leaks?
But the White House keeps trying to narrow the focus of any questions by saying the White House Counsel cleared Flynn of any illegality as if that were the end of it and saying #president Trump is instead concerned with the “leaks” to the media without which it is likely we would never have learned of the Flynn/Russia links. It is interesting to note the timeline where President Trump was supposedly aware of the Flynn contacts with the Russian Ambassador more than two weeks before his resignation, yet spokesperson Sean Spicer insisted Trump was very decisive in his actions, only taking 17 days to decide it wasn’t appropriate for someone who could be blackmailed by Russia to stop getting top secret briefings and managing things like the now infamous dinner party North Korea security discussions.
Although the Trump White House only wants to concentrate on the leaks to the press, it appears that Trump didn’t dismiss Flynn until the media learned of the Flynn misconduct and made it public. Without those leaks, Flynn might still be getting daily intelligence briefings.
As for Vice President Pence, whom the Congressional Republicans are counting on to be a moderating influence on Trump, it appears he is not in the inner circle at the White House because he didn’t learn of the Dept. of Justice’s warnings about Flynn for two weeks after President Trump.
Did Trump disdain for CIA lull associates?
One of the questions raised by all the reports of close contacts between Flynn, Manafort, and other Trump aids with Russians is just how incompetent these people are and why. With all the revelations of how the NSA is monitoring practically every phone call made anywhere, how is it that these supposedly highly intelligent and very savvy people thought they could get away with denying any contacts with Russia when, in Trump’s own words, “even a dumb high school student,” would be able to understand?
But Trump keeps saying how untrustworthy and incompetent the US intelligence agencies are despite a half century of successes against the U.S.S.R. culminating in its collapse, so perhaps this lulled his associates into thinking they could phone Russians and no one would ever know.
Now they are reduced to insisting they never talked with Russian “intelligence” agents when everyone who ever read a cold-war spy novel knows that any American dealing with any Russian will come to the attention of the Russian Intelligence apparatus and that half the people they meet will probably be with the KGB and its successors and probably also with the GRU - Putin’s main intelligence arm today.
The GRU is the arm of Russian intelligence connected with interference with the US election.
Glavnoye razvedyvatel’noye upravleniye or GRU is the military arm of intelligence operations founded in 1920 by an appointee of KGB founder Iron Felix, Felix Dzerzhinsky, the head of Lenin’s secret police and intelligence services the Cheka, which was headquartered at the infamous Lubyanskaya Square or Lubyanka prison. (Russian: Лубянская площадь, Lubyanskaya ploshchad'), #trump campaign