Essay:The heart of the matter
How a foreign policy debate and division within the national security establishment
can devolve into domestic scandals
Where did the Trump-Russia/Obamagate drama begin? Here's a clue: the Magnitsky Act of 2012, sponsored by John McCain. Signed into law by Barack Obama. Brought up for revisions in June 2016. Lobbyied against by Ken Duberstein, former Reagan Chief of staff, and Fusion GPS, authors of the Steele dossier (the pee-pee memo) alleging Trump ties to Russia. You may recall when the Magnitsky Act was passed Russia retaliated by banning adoption of Russian children by Americans. The bill allowed the President to issue sanctions against certain Russian governmental officials and institutions he may designate. Russia in turn banned a list of Americans, as well. Among them Preet Bharara.
This Act has been interpreted as a provocation by some within the United States national security establishment to start a new Cold War. Hence the US national security establishment has been divided against itself since the Russian intervention in Georgia in 2008 over curbing Russian intentions or continued cooperation. The hawks, McCain, Obama, Hillary, and the predominant mood of the Intelligence Community (Brennan, Rogers, Clapper Matthis, McMaster) against the doves, Duberstein, Rohrbach, Trump, Mike Flynn and others opposed. This, at heart is the issue.
As to FusionGPS & Christopher Steele: it is undetermined yet if FusionGPS, which was on the KGB payroll, knew that its employee Christopher Steele was at the same time on the FBI payroll. This outfit are bit players in the scheme. Steele is only an E. Howard Hunt-type figure and not a credible witness. FusionGPS played both sides of the fence, the Kremlin side and the US Intelligence Community, and took 'em both for their money. That's what they do. They are professionals at it. Exposing their duplicity undercuts the whole Trump-Russia narrative, and lays open the wider motivations of both sides, the Cold War hawks (the US Intelligence Community) versus the Cold War doves (Putin and Trump). And the IC's big fear is once the public understands what's at stake, they will naturally be inclined to side with the doves. Who know's what stunt they are willing to try next? They're overcommitted at this point. The best way to stave off some disaster right now is for Trump to show some leadership and come to an accommodation with the IC. IOW, become a hawk, and put off any hopes for detente til a second term. Nixon did. Jack Kennedy never made it that far.
So Trump's on board with the anti-Russian warhawks. He is now launching cruise missiles at his KGB paymasters in the Kremlin. He shitcanned Flynn per the CIA's wishes (Tillerson is the next to go). The CIA robbed him of the traditional honeymoon afforded new presidents. Can we let it begin now that the leftist/progressive anti-Putin crowd have drawn First Blood?
Nothing like a cruise missile to bring out the true blue in everyone.
Trump's on board with the Deep State neocons. The Trump-Russia/Obamagate scandals are a draw. Everybody relax. You got the Hillary/Obama crowd back in charge.
It's what they wanted him to do, Democrats, Republicans, and the Intelligence Community - the three power centers in DC. Get off his Russia-Putin hobby horse which only he & Flynn were riding. A Trump-Russia investigation is pointless at this point. Like Nixon, Trump will just have to wait til his second term to make overtures to Russia. By then the IC might be willing to follow his leadership.
Here's how it'll play out: Listen for McCain to say something like "he's come around" or "he's seen the light." Then, with the House investigation nuetered (there was an ethics violation filed against Schiff, too) they'll find a way to bury it. Rice will take the fall for her boss (National Security Advisor Mike Flynn served 24 days, National Security Adviser Susan Rice gets to serve 10 years) and they all lived happily ever after.
So what do we learn from this? The next time somebody gets fired from the NSC staff the shit's gonna hit the fan the next day? or is it, Bannon was like Ed Meese overseeing staff transition (likely), or Bannon quit/got fired to minimize leaks and be absolved of planning (equally likely, and slightly moreso).
The national security establishment wants sanctions upheld for Ukraine (Ukraine is the big issue, once Syria is resolved}. The plan Trump ran on - detente with Russia, accept Crimea and Eastern Ukraine a fait accompli, and respect Russia's Near abroad, in exchange for Russia easing away from Iran, Syria, and North Korea was vehemently opposed by Hillary & her neocon supporters (Jeb, Chertoff, Papa Bush the list is endless}. That's why Brennan, Obama, and Rice wiretapped him. They vetoed Flynn's security clearance which destroyed Trump's foreign policy agenda (Tillerson was only hired to be the messenger boy to Putin from Trump & Flynn; after he tells Putin in Moscow wait three years and look at the situation then, there's no more need for him).
This is a blow to Trump's ego. He's used to being his own man. He won't be the IC & Transatlantic alliance puppet (like both Clinton's, both Bush's, and Obama were), he has just compromised with them for the remainder of his term to end the fueding. Witness, Henry Kissinger who backed Hillary, attended the meeting with the China boss in Florida to introduce Trump as 'our boy', based on agreements Kissinger negotiated X number of decades ago.
Here's his job approval index. Let's look at it in 3 days and see how many points 59 cruise missiles are worth maybe we can get LarRon to compile a graph over his term. Here's Bill coaching him how to do it.