HOME



Digby's Hullabaloo
2801 Ocean Park Blvd.
Box 157
Santa Monica, Ca 90405



Facebook: Digby Parton

Twitter:
@digby56
@Gaius_Publius
@BloggersRUs (Tom Sullivan)
@spockosbrain



emails:
Digby:
thedigbyblog at gmail
Dennis:
satniteflix at gmail
Gaius:
publius.gaius at gmail
Tom:
tpostsully at gmail
Spocko:
Spockosbrain at gmail
tristero:
Richardein at me.com








Infomania

Salon
Buzzflash
Mother Jones
Raw Story
Huffington Post
Slate
Crooks and Liars
American Prospect
New Republic


Denofcinema.com: Saturday Night at the Movies by Dennis Hartley review archive

January 2003 February 2003 March 2003 April 2003 May 2003 June 2003 July 2003 August 2003 September 2003 October 2003 November 2003 December 2003 January 2004 February 2004 March 2004 April 2004 May 2004 June 2004 July 2004 August 2004 September 2004 October 2004 November 2004 December 2004 January 2005 February 2005 March 2005 April 2005 May 2005 June 2005 July 2005 August 2005 September 2005 October 2005 November 2005 December 2005 January 2006 February 2006 March 2006 April 2006 May 2006 June 2006 July 2006 August 2006 September 2006 October 2006 November 2006 December 2006 January 2007 February 2007 March 2007 April 2007 May 2007 June 2007 July 2007 August 2007 September 2007 October 2007 November 2007 December 2007 January 2008 February 2008 March 2008 April 2008 May 2008 June 2008 July 2008 August 2008 September 2008 October 2008 November 2008 December 2008 January 2009 February 2009 March 2009 April 2009 May 2009 June 2009 July 2009 August 2009 September 2009 October 2009 November 2009 December 2009 January 2010 February 2010 March 2010 April 2010 May 2010 June 2010 July 2010 August 2010 September 2010 October 2010 November 2010 December 2010 January 2011 February 2011 March 2011 April 2011 May 2011 June 2011 July 2011 August 2011 September 2011 October 2011 November 2011 December 2011 January 2012 February 2012 March 2012 April 2012 May 2012 June 2012 July 2012 August 2012 September 2012 October 2012 November 2012 December 2012 January 2013 February 2013 March 2013 April 2013 May 2013 June 2013 July 2013 August 2013 September 2013 October 2013 November 2013 December 2013 January 2014 February 2014 March 2014 April 2014 May 2014 June 2014 July 2014 August 2014 September 2014 October 2014 November 2014 December 2014 January 2015 February 2015 March 2015 April 2015 May 2015 June 2015 July 2015 August 2015 September 2015 October 2015 November 2015 December 2015 January 2016 February 2016 March 2016 April 2016 May 2016 June 2016 July 2016 August 2016 September 2016 October 2016 November 2016 December 2016 January 2017 February 2017 March 2017 April 2017 May 2017 June 2017 July 2017 August 2017 September 2017 October 2017 November 2017 December 2017 January 2018 February 2018 March 2018 April 2018 May 2018 June 2018 July 2018


 

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Hullabaloo


Wednesday, July 12, 2017

 
Trump finally found his oligarch bestie

by digby



David Corn lays out the plot that seems to be emerging from muck:
Here’s a point missing in much of the coverage of Donald Trump Jr.’s bombshell emails: If they are an accurate depiction of events, these messages show there was a conspiracy between the Putin regime and the Trump camp that was exceedingly simple and compact and quite easy to implement. The apparent plot—yes, it was a secret plot—involved a small number of people: three of Donald Trump’s closest advisers, a Trump business partner (and that man’s son), a Russian official close to Vladimir Putin, and two emissaries. Actually, none of this is surprising. Or complicated. You do not need Agent Mulder to get to the bottom of this.

Let’s start with Aras Agalarov. He is a billionaire developer in Russia in favor with Vladimir Putin, who in 2013 awarded him the Order of Honor for his construction work in Russia. Agalarov is also a business partner of Donald Trump. In 2013, he signed up with Trump to bring to Moscow the Miss Universe contest, which Trump co-owned at the time. That deal was brokered by Emin Agalarov, Aras’s son and a middling pop star, and Emin’s manager, a Brit named Rob Goldstone.

For years, Trump had tried to do hotel and condo projects in Moscow. All these endeavors had failed or fizzled. (Trump Vodka had flopped, too.) The Miss Universe event was his only successful venture there. It was good for the Agalarovs. The contest was held in Crocus City Hall, part of a large shopping and exhibition complex they own on the outskirts of Moscow, and they were able to raise their profile and promote their ritzy theater there. Emin, as part of the deal, got to perform two songs before a global audience, which he and Goldstone hoped would boost his career.

The event made at least $12 million for Trump’s Miss Universe Organization. Even better for Trump, the pageant forged a tight bond between him and Aras and Emin Agalarov. Trump appeared in a music video Emin released. The Trump Organization and the Agalarovs started working on a deal to bring a Trump tower to Moscow. In fact, as Yahoo News reports, Ivanka Trump traveled to Moscow shortly after the event to scout locations. Here is a photo Goldstone posted on his Facebook page of Ivanka meeting with Emin there:

And in the following years, there was steady contact between the Trumps and the Agalarovs—and Goldstone, too. Though no Moscow project materialized, there remained a relationship.

Come the campaign of 2016, it was no surprise that Emin and Aras Agalarov were pulling for their pal Donald. And it’s only natural they wanted to help.

According to emails released Tuesday by Trump Jr., on June 3, 2016—shortly after Trump had secured the Republican presidential nomination—Aras was in a meeting with Yury Chaika, the prosecutor general of Russia, who had been in the post since 2006. A few weeks earlier, Putin had recommended that Chaika serve another five-year term. Certainly, only a Putin-fancied official would be in this job. But this was a sign that Chaika remained in Putin’s good graces. (The previous year, a prominent Russian opposition activist had accused Chaika’s family of being involved in corruption and criminal activity.)

The Trump Jr. emails do not note how the meeting between Chaika and Aras Agalarov came about. But according to an email sent from Goldstone to Trump Jr., Chaika told Agalarov he could provide the Trump campaign “with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary” and that would be “very useful” for Donald Trump. This contact makes plenty of sense. If the Russian government wanted to help Trump win the presidency by passing his campaign dirt on Hillary Clinton, the natural go-between would be Aras Agalarov, who had been Trump’s business colleague. Agalarov could go straight to the source.

And apparently he did. According to the Trump Jr. emails, Aras Agalarov made the obvious play. He had Emin ask Goldstone to contact Trump Jr. Emin’s manager then emailed Donald Trump Jr. and told him about the Agalarov-Chaika meeting and added, “This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but it is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump – helped along by Aras and Emin.”

Nothing complex here. A Putin official seems to be collaborating with Trump’s business partners to get Trump negative material on Clinton.

Next, Trump Jr. seems to have a phone call with Emin, and a meeting is scheduled for a few days later in Trump tower where Trump Jr. will meet with what one email describes as a “Russian government attorney.”

Trump Jr. then widens the cabal by informing Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort about this operation, and they are added to the meeting. An email forwarded to them about the get-together has the subject heading: “Russia – Clinton – private and confidential.” On June 9, the meeting occurs.

It only took three days for this plot to zip from the discussion between Chaika and Aras Agalarov to the inner circle of Trump’s campaign. Trump Jr. says nothing came out of the conversation between the Trump advisers and the Russian lawyer, claiming she spoke only in vague and meaningless terms. But given that the president’s son has repeatedly dissembled about this episode, there is no telling if this description can be trusted. (The lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, has denied working on behalf of the Russian government or conveying negative information about Clinton.)

This is what ought to register: The scheme appears to have been put into play by a Putin regime official and a Putin-friendly oligarch who was Trump’s business partner in Russia—and Trump’s son, son-in-law, and campaign manager all joined in. (A pop singer, a Russian lawyer, and a talent manager all had supporting roles.) Trump Jr., Kushner, and Manafort were looking to collude with a foreign power to gain an advantage in the election—an allegation the Trump team has repeatedly and passionately denied.
There may be much more to all this. The Russian government may very well have been looking at Trump or a long time. He is, after all , an idiotic clown. Anyone with brains could see that he was a mark.

And there's also plenty of suspicion falling on Kushner for entirely different reasons having to do with own family's debts as well as his involvement with the Trump digital campaign which may have been involved with  targeting of damaging information provided by Russian hackers. All that may pan out to nothing but there are very live questions about all of it.

But the real estate oligarch/pop star connection is just the kind of obviously stupid relationship you'd expect from Trump, the low rent reality star who is now the leader of the free world. It's perfect.