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Seth Abramson @SethAbramson
, 16 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
(THREAD) BREAKING: Trump national security adviser George Papadopoulos' sentencing memo has been released, and it has some startling elements in it. I go through all of them in this thread. I hope you'll read on and share. documentcloud.org/documents/4807…
2/ The memo confirms that working for Trump was Papadopoulos' dream job; he was hired in "early" March 2016; and within a week he was "traveling in Italy." I think we are very close to confirming here that the *campaign* sent him to Italy, where Mifsud "happened" to find him.
3/ No one gets their dream job, then immediately goes on vacation. And Simona Mangiante has said Papadopoulos' position is that everything he did was campaign-sanctioned. So who sent Papadopoulos to Italy to be "found" by Mifsud? I don't think it was Clovis. I think it was Flynn.
4/ Clovis has no national security expertise; that was his big defense, in fact, for hiring Page and Papadopoulos. But Trump had *one* (only one) NatSec adviser on the day he hired Papadopoulos, and it was *Flynn*. And they'd both been doing work on energy issues with Ben Carson.
5/ The memo confirms what we already know: Clovis surprised Papadopoulos by saying Russia was going to be a major issue in the campaign. Again I ask, who came up with that? Not Clovis. So who? Once again it seems clear that it was Flynn in conjunction with Trump who decided that.
6/ Is it possible Papadopoulos got his dream job, said "Later, going on vacation!" and then was by total coincidence stumbled upon by a Kremlin agent while traipsing about Italy? Sure, anything is possible. But that doesn't comport with common sense or *any* of the facts we have.
7/ The bombshell: Papadopoulos says Trump "nodded with approval" when he was told Papadopoulos was a Kremlin intermediary. And Sessions "liked the idea." That means Sessions lied to Congress. Gordon lied to media. Schmitz lied. A lot of people in that March 31, 2016 meeting lied.
8/ Now another bombshell: we knew Papadopoulos knew Sergei Millian, but we didn't know that when the FBI came to see Papadopoulos he *assumed they wanted to talk about Millian*. This adds a wrinkle to the question of how Papadopoulos got his job and how Mifsud found him in Italy.
9/ Understand that there were *very* few methods for Papadopoulos to get the job he did, for a *host* of reasons. Something has to explain him being hired and going to Italy. The memo emphasizes *both* possible reasons—a connection to Michael Flynn and/or a connection to Millian.
10/ The memo confirms Papadopoulos was asked by the FBI to try to procure additional information from his compatriots through clandestine means. Wow—when I think of all the garbage I took when I said that it was plausible to think the FBI would ask him to do that! Well, they did.
11/ Now here is where I get flummoxed: the memo appears to *maintain* the charade that Papadopoulos never told *anyone* on the campaign about the emails, even though he told them everything else. The feds have already said they don't believe him, and do you blame them? Would you?
12/ Case-in-point: Papadopoulos appears say (get this) that he told the *Greek Foreign Minister* about the emails but *not* anyone on the Trump campaign. He *worked* for the Trump campaign, and they *sent* him to Greece to *meet* the Foreign Minister! So how does that make sense?
13/ I've known many judges, and I can tell you they *won't* like Papadopoulos and his lawyer arguing that Van der Zwaan was more culpable than Papadopoulos because he "destroyed evidence." Bad move by Papadopoulos' attorney, because guess what—Papadopoulos destroyed evidence too.
14/ Here's what I think, based on my experience as a criminal defense attorney: I think George Papadopoulos knows (and told the FBI) *far* more than what we see here, even though we've got some bombshells. I think his attorney carefully determined what facts he could reveal here.
15/ So this memo has a bombshell that should be and *will* be national news. The March 31, 2016 meeting I argued was critical long before that was accepted by the media has turned out to be critical—deeply inculpatory for Trump. But there's a whole iceberg beneath this memo. /end
PS/ Trump's first move will be to call Papadopoulos a liar about what happened on March 31, 2016. Most likely, Sessions stays quiet. Why? Well, we know from major-media reports at least *three* attendees at the March 31, 2016 meeting concur with Papadopoulos—and told Mueller so.
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