Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Major Update: [...] Moscow Real Estate Deal Leads to Trump-Kremlin Alliance

Pictured Above: Donald J. Trump; Aras Agalarov; Rob Goldstone 
Donald J. Trump, Jr. on FOX with Sean Hannity
(Telling his story: Called "Deer Jr. in the Headlights Moment")

Fast moving story as I note below and now this from Trump Jr., to FOX’s Sean Hannity: His appearance is kind of like Al Capone telling the tax auditor to look the other way while he makes a pen change to his financials to “set the record straight.”

Full story from Fox here follows these highlights:Donald Trump Jr. acknowledged in an exclusive interview with Fox News' Hannity Tuesday night's show (July 11) that he “Probably would have done things a little differently when he met with a Russian attorney during his father’s presidential campaign in June 2016.”However, Don Jr. also described the meeting to Hannity as “A nothing. I wouldn’t have even remembered it until you started scouring through this stuff. It was literally just a wasted 20 minutes, which was a shame.” 
The interview constitutes the first public statement by Donald J. Trump Jr. since he posted what he called “the entire email chain of his conversations with music publicist Rod Goldstone setting up the June 2016 meeting with Natalia Veselnitskaya via Twitter.”
(I note: This appearance came shortly after the NY Times told him they would be posting his emails as part of their story series).
Recall that Trump Jr. response to the email invite from Goldstone (see more below) was to say: “If it’s (the dirt on Hillary Clinton stuff) what you say. I love it.”
Ding – smoking gun w/o question.

Now the rest of the story follows below … it’s keeps growing it seems now almost by the hour.

More to follow later I am sure.
 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

New details emerge on Moscow real estate deal that led to the 
Trump-Kremlin alliance

Full story is here – Very, very complex but it certainly underscores the need to get to the bottom of all this and as they say post haste.

Highlights (my emphasis added):

While in Moscow for the Miss Universe pageant in November 2013, Donald J. Trump entered into a formal business deal with Aras Agalarov, a Russian oligarch close to Vladimir Putin, to construct a Trump Tower in the Russian capital. He later assigned his son, Donald Trump Jr., to oversee the project, according to Rob Goldstone, the British publicist who arranged the controversial 2016 meeting between the younger Trump and a Kremlin-linked lawyer.

Mr. Trump has dismissed the idea he had any business deals in Russia, saying at one point last October, “I have nothing to do with Russia.” But Goldstone’s account, provided in an extensive interview in March in New York, offers new details of the proposed Trump project that appears to have been further along than most previous reports have suggested, and even included a trip by Ivanka Trump to Moscow to identify potential sites.

According to Goldstone the project — structured as a licensing deal in which Agalarov would build the tower with Trump’s name on it — was only abandoned after the Russian economy floundered. The economic downturn resulted in part from sanctions imposed by the U.S. and the European Union following Russia’s intervention in Ukraine.

Goldstone’s version of events implies a possible explanation for Trump’s interest in lifting sanctions on Russia — a policy move his administration quietly pursued in its first few weeks until it ran into strong opposition from members of Congress and officials within the State Department.

Goldstone placed Donald Jr. at the center of the Trump Tower deal, saying that his father assigned his eldest son the job of moving the project to fruition after the signing of a “letter of intent” between the Trump Organization and Agalarov’s company, the Crocus Group.

Important Notes:

1.  It is not clear if the future president personally signed the “letter of intent,” but Michael Cohen, a longtime lawyer for Trump, told Yahoo News Tuesday that it would have been standard practice for Trump, as president of the Trump Organization, to do so.

2.  Goldstone also said that Ivanka Trump flew to Moscow in 2014 and met with Emin Agalarov, the oligarch’s son, a pop singer and a vice president of the Crocus Group, to identify sites for the project.

3.  Trump “put Donald Jr. in charge and then Ivanka went to Moscow to look around for what the location would be,” Goldstone said. But the plans for a Trump Tower fell apart because “the economy tanked in Russia’’ after the imposition of Western sanctions, he said.

Trump Jr. released his email exchange with Goldstone on Tuesday, confirming the key role of the publicist and, more significantly, the Agalarovs, in offering negative information about Clinton on behalf of the Kremlin. “Emin just called and asked me to contact you with something very interesting,” Goldstone wrote Trump Jr. on June 3, 2016.

A chief prosecutor in Russia “offered to provide the Trump campaign some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and would be very useful to your father.

This is very high-level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support of Mr. Trump — helped along by Aras and Emin.”

Alan Garten, the chief lawyer for the Trump Organization, did not respond to requests for comment. In a telephone interview, Cohen, who is Trump’s personal lawyer, did not dispute any specific details of Goldstone’s account but offered to check them. He did not later respond.

But Cohen adamantly rejected the idea there was anything improper about meeting with the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, given that Trump Jr. was told she might have information helpful to Trump’s campaign. “The purpose of the election is to win. “Why is this any different?” than the unverified dossier on Trump’s ties to Russia prepared by a former British spy working for a Washington research firm hired by his political opponents (re: the “Golden Pee” tapes).

B/L: It’s all falling into place – a place the whole Trump clan surely hates to fall. I wonder if there’s a bottom or we’re in the middle of a “never ending story?” But, I also note the heat is gathering near the top as it were.

Stay tuned for updates.

No comments: