This NYT article
is of interest for several reasons. I'm going to focus on what I consider the most important point.
Several weeks ago, Brian A. Benczkowski, the head of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, and lawyers from the division’s Fraud Section met with Mr. Giuliani to discuss a bribery case in which he and other attorneys were representing the defendants.
That meeting took place before the United States attorney’s office in Manhattan publicly charged the two Giuliani associates, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, with breaking campaign finance laws and trying to unlawfully influence politicians, including former Representative Pete Sessions, Republican of Texas.
What's missing from this picture? Those "other attorneys."
We're talking about that fun couple from Fox, Victoria Toensing and Joseph deGenova. Once you understand that fact, it is easy to surmise that their client is also Rudy's client.
Their client is Dmitry Firtash.
You know Dimmy, dontcha? Oligarch. Billionaire. Shady character. Close associate to Semion Mogilevich, the worst gangster in world history. Firtash was Putin's man in Ukraine.
That's why Rachel Maddow talks about him so often.
Rudy absolutely denies that Firtash is his client. He also denies that he and Lev and Igor were flying to Austria to meet Firtash, who lives in Vienna. But as we shall see, finding some other
way to interpret the evidence requires the kind of mental gymnastics that most of us cannot perform.
As noted, Firtash is in Austria right now, doing everything he can to resist being extradited. The FBI has fingered him in connection with a major bribery case in India. (Why is the FBI involved in an Indian matter? Because American banks were used.)
A couple of days ago, Laura Rozen
was the first to identify Rudy's secret client.
oh man. we are idiots. the guy who is charged in US in bribery case is ...Firtash!
She compared the NYT's first account of this matter (published on the 18th) to the unsealed indictment of Dmitry Firtash. Her side-by-side comparison allows for no doubt: Rudy is working for Dmitry.
So are Toensing and deGenova -- openly.
So is Lev Parnas. He allegedly is working for Firtash as a "translator," a claim I consider more than a little suspect. Speaking as someone who lived for years with a professional translator, I know that there is more to the job than simple fluency in two languages. (Fun fact: In the trade, written material requires translation
while oral communication requires an interpreter
.) Even the best-paid simultaneous interpreters will work for much less than a guy like Parnas would demand.
Besides, it can hardly be said
that Parnas and Fruman are just
providing translation services.
In their effort to discredit President Donald Trump’s perceived enemies, close allies of the President have received key documents and information from a Ukrainian oligarch wanted in the U.S. on corruption charges, according to five people directly involved in this effort and two other people familiar with it.
The information came from the legal team of Dmitry Firtash, a wealthy industrialist with assets across Europe, who has spent the last five years in Vienna fighting extradition to the U.S. on bribery and racketeering charges.
Here's what's really cute about all this: Some time ago, Firtash was represented by a Democratic lawyer, Lanny Davis, who also represented Michael Cohen. Rudy was livid. How dare Lanny Davis have Firtash as a client? Doesn't he know that Firtash was part of the Mogilevich gang?
My, how things have changed!
If the President's lawyer also works for one of Putin's mobsters -- well, that's pretty damned important. It's Rudy's Big Secret, and it can't be minimized.
The NYT refuses to disclose Rudy's Big Secret, probably because Rudy remains so firm in his denials. Remember, this president's associates see nothing dishonorable in lying to journalists. Still, writer Katie Benner must know the truth. I mean, the Firtash connection to Lev and Igor and Joe and Vicky has been public knowledge for quite some time.
Just about everything mysterious and complicated about the Ukraine affair becomes a whole lot clearer when you take a hard look at Firtash.
For example: Were you wondering why the FBI's investigation of Rudy is considered a counterintelligence matter
? Wonder no longer.
I don't think that Rudy, Joe and Vicky were hired for the India thing. Firtash probably has real
lawyers handling that. I suspect that Rudy, Joe and Vicky were brought on board because they are plugged into Trump. Of course, the fact that they have law degrees allows them to claim privilege, should the FBI ever ask them about Firtash.
Evidence suggests that the plot concerns liquid natural gas in Ukraine
. The plan may also have involved Rick Perry: See here
. That amazing thread by Karol Cummins is not an easy read, but if you force yourself, you'll be grateful. A few excerpts:
Two clients of Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, Ukrainian-American Trump donors Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, had met with Naftogaz earlier this year to pitch themselves as suppliers of U.S. natural gas.
Fruity’s henchmen Parnas & Fruman formed Global Energy Producers to sell liquefied natural gas from the U.S. to countries around the world, especially Ukraine.
Could there be an ulterior motive to have prosecutors go after their competitor Burisma (Hunter Biden’s fmr employer).
Kill two bird with one stone, no? Hmm.
📌Ukraine’s new chief prosecutor to ‘audit’ Burisma gas company cases
Boy. Perry really was in over his head, wasn't he? Smartest thing he ever did was to wave adios
to these wheeler-dealers.
So when is the NYT -- or any other major journalistic outlet -- going to come out and say it? Trump's lawyer works for Dmitry Firtash.
can't yet bring herself to utter the preceding sentence, though she must know
Yes, Rudy denies it. But I believe Laura Rozen, who has demonstrated that those denials are every bit as false as the lies told by Pompeo, Lewandowski or Trump. Rudy must know that he can't hide this thing forever. Every day, we see a new article that strongly hints at the Big Secret.
I think that a number of Republican congress-critters also know. That's why we're starting to see stories indicating that Trump's senate support may waver. Even after Rudy's Big Secret comes out, Lindsay Graham will probably shake his head and mutter "Not a crime."
But any senator with a skeleton-free closet will admit that this sure looks
In fact, it looks as though the president's lawyer is really Team Trump's conduit to Team Putin.