Every worst fear about Donald Trump’s status as a conspiring puppet of the Russian government was confirmed tonight when he was caught giving highly classified information to two Russian government representatives. Trump gave the intel to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak on Thursday. But based on what we know of the longtime relationship between Trump and Kislyak, this can’t be the first time Trump has given him classified intel.
Follow the dots: Donald Trump and Sergey Kislyak first officially met backstage at a campaign speech in April 2016 (link). Trump was not yet the Republican nominee and he was therefore not yet being given classified intel briefings. But Kislyak’s attendance at Trump’s first-ever foreign policy speech of the campaign was a harbinger of just how thoroughly Kislyak was pulling Trump’s strings the entire time. By the time of the Republican Convention, Kislyak was once again in attendance, and several of Trump’s advisers met with Kislyak as he rewrote a portion of the Republican party charter to his liking.
But then came Donald Trump’s first intel briefings of the campaign, which first began on August 18th of 2016, after he had secured the nomination (link). Then in September, Kislyak met with Trump campaign adviser Jeff Sessions for the third time. Given what we now know about Trump’s willingness to share classified intel, did he give key info to Sessions, who then gave it to Kislyak? This question must be answered. And there’s much more.
During the transition period, Trump adviser Michael Flynn made several phone calls to Kislyak. Flynn has since been exposed as a paid foreign agent of Russia. Did Trump give classified intel to Flynn, who then gave it to Kislyak? Trump’s son in law Jared Kushner also met with Kislyak during the transition (link). And these are just the Kislyak meetings we know about. It’s nearly a given that the loose lipped Trump shared classified intel with his entire circle. Which if any of them turned around and gave it to the Russian Ambassador? These questions must now be answered.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report