Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win

Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win

With the recent indictments of Paul Manafort, Richard Gates, and George Papadopoulos, Russia expert Luke Harding lays out the most in-depth look to date at the Trump campaign’s dealings with Russia. Beginning with a meeting with Christopher Steele, the man behind the shattering dossier that first brought the allegations to light, Harding probes the histories of key Russian...

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Title:Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win
Author:Luke Harding
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Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win Reviews

  • Harry Buckle

    Simply the most important book published this year. Brings clarity to the swirling murk around the US elections and much more. Do not think 'I don't read politics' this book is about matters that affect your life and are material to the well being of both the West and East. I was tempted to stress 'Trust me. As an author my self and an ex MI6 and KGB man'-that's true by the way...but I do not want to take away from the fact the YOU MUST READ THIS- as soon as possible. Despite this review having

    Simply the most important book published this year. Brings clarity to the swirling murk around the US elections and much more. Do not think 'I don't read politics' this book is about matters that affect your life and are material to the well being of both the West and East. I was tempted to stress 'Trust me. As an author my self and an ex MI6 and KGB man'-that's true by the way...but I do not want to take away from the fact the YOU MUST READ THIS- as soon as possible. Despite this review having the paper back logo at the top I bought it from amazon read it over the past hours on my kindle. Some of Guardian man Harding's earlier book was a bit sanctimonious --much like the paper has become. This one is simply brilliant...and it really is : The Most Important Book Published This Year.

  • Perry

    --Machiavelli

    --Machiavelli

    Chico Marx

    Saying it ain't so is no defense in light of all proof to date. [see legal definition of

    ]. No matter how many times or how loudly you say it. An old saying in my profession, which you may well have heard before, goes, "

    "

    The last doesn't usually work. Humans are way too smart to fall for it. Nonetheless we might do so when it serves our duty to zealously represent a client. So, I can't really blame Trump for pounding on the table repeatedly. There isn't much else he can do as the evidence mounts of not only collusion between his campaign staff and the Russian government but of his repeated attempts to obstruct the investigation.

    If you want to know the probable path down which the Special Counsel’s Russia investigation will go, you MUST read this book. You will understand, as one example, the relevance and materiality of POTUS Trump’s financials which he has, to date, adamantly refused to make public.

    Sad to say: this will be a Dark chapter in U.S. history and if the charges are proven (not even considering what is uncovered by the ongoing investigation), they will likely lead to articles of impeachment by a Republican-led House and removal upon conviction by a Republican-led Senate.

    This anti-Kremlin Republican read this book, which succinctly gathers and brilliantly organizes reports and credible evidence proffered to date and adds reliable materials to make a case that is

    , and I am even further shocked and dismayed by the incredulities of those who willfully disregard the current administration's love affair with Vladimir Putin and all the signs pointing to Russia's involvement in helping to elect a President of the United States.

    I wonder what their grandparents and great-grandparents would have to say about communist Russia's infiltrations into our political system. And would they be angrier with Russia than they'd be ashamed of their descendants’ willful blindness to the threats imposed upon our shining democracy?

    If these ties/links are proven by U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller, Watergate will seem, by comparison, like it was a trial on jaywalking charges.

    (Russian hacker group, associated with Russian FSB, responsible for 2016 cyber attacks on DNC servers and emails) and

    (cyber espionage group sponsored by Russian gov't and associated with Russian GRU and responsible, along with Cozy Bear, for 2016 cyber attacks on DNC servers/emails)

    Written by first foreign journalist to be expelled from Russia since the end of the Cold War due to his unflattering coverage of Russia, including stories on sources of Vladimir Putin's wealth and Putin's knowledge of the London assassination of ex-Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko.

    "

    ," Donald J. Trump, 12/6/2017

  • Steven Z.

    Each day it seems as if the American people are exposed to the drip, drip of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and the possible role played by the Trump campaign in collusion with the Putin government. We hear about Christopher Steele’s “Dossier,” the link between Russian oligarchs and their ties to Putin, meetings with Trump officials, the role of Paul Manafort, a former Trump campaign manager facing indictment, the flipping of a Trump foreign policy advisor to the Mueller

    Each day it seems as if the American people are exposed to the drip, drip of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and the possible role played by the Trump campaign in collusion with the Putin government. We hear about Christopher Steele’s “Dossier,” the link between Russian oligarchs and their ties to Putin, meetings with Trump officials, the role of Paul Manafort, a former Trump campaign manager facing indictment, the flipping of a Trump foreign policy advisor to the Mueller investigation, and the latest, a deal between Michael Flynn, Trump’s former National Security advisor and the special prosecutor. The latest twist seems to be conservative House Republicans calling for a Special Prosecutor to investigate the Special Prosecutor. If names like Orbis, Fushion GPS, Gucifer 2.0, GRU, FSB, Sergey Kislyak, Carter Page, Robert Goldstone, Natalia Veselnitskaya, and numerous other names boggle the mind then you might want to consult Luke Harding, a foreign correspondent for the Guardian, new book, COLLUSION: SECRET MEETINGS, DIRTY MONEY, AND HOW RUSSIA HELPED DONALD TRUMP WIN.

    For those who are skeptical about Trump’s role in either obstruction of justice, or outright collusion with Russia they should consult Harding’s monograph. In fact, as the confusion that surrounds the collusion becomes clearer and clearer one might say that Harding has done us all a service by preparing a handbook of all the characters, motivations, crimes, disingenuous behavior, outright lies/falsehoods, and other aspects associated with the topic. Harding digs deep using his many sources based on a career that saw him posted to New Delhi, Berlin and as the former bureau chief in Moscow from 2007 to 2011, as well as his contacts in Britain’s MI6 and SIS, as well as the American intelligence community. Further he has followed and written about the likes of Paul Manafort and his machinations in the Ukraine for Viktor Yanukovych long before Trump announced his candidacy, and was also able to interview Christopher Steele. What results is almost a legal brief that points to the guilt of the Trump campaign and the President in collaborating with Moscow, and doing all it could to deflect any investigation of what actually occurred.

    Harding begins by providing the background for the “Dossier,” authored by former British intelligence operative Christopher Steele. The famous “Dossier” grew out of Steele’s assignment to uncover the Kremlin’s innermost secrets as they applied to Donald Trump. Steele’s investigation argues a number of points that anyone who has followed this story in any detail has heard numerous times before; from Trump’s public call for Putin to hack Hillary Clinton’s emails, the Wikileaks leak of Clinton emails in June and October 2016, the hacking of Democratic and Republican National Committee computers, with only Democratic information leaked, Trump’s denigration of almost every politician domestic or worldwide, except for Putin who he constantly praises, the fact that Russian intelligence sources have been “cultivating, supporting and assisting Trump for at least five years,” how Trump and his inner circle have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, claims that the FSB has compromised Trump through his past activities in Moscow sufficiently to be able to blackmail him, and a trail of money laundering and other acts that make one ask, what does Moscow have on Trump that he is afraid to criticize Putin, and constantly denies Russian involvement in the election, in addition to repeatedly interfering in the Mueller investigation? All the answers to these questions are present in Harding’s narrative.

    The author takes the reader through the actions of Aras and Emin Agalarov, Paul Manafort, Carter Page, Michael Flynn, Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and a host others along with a short biographical sketch of each. We learn their role in the collusion through their interest and relationship with the Kremlin. Harding explores Vladimir Putin’s motivations and goals as they relate to his hatred of Hillary Clinton, the desire to create chaos and doubt in the American electoral system, and most importantly gain a reduction or lifting of economic sanctions imposed by the Obama Administration due to Russian actions in the Crimea, Ukraine, and the 2016 election. In Donald Trump, Putin found an American politician who could allow him to achieve these goals. The question Harding raises is how do we establish the trail between the two men? The answer he argues lies in following the money.

    The entire scenario would seem unbelievable if it hadn’t occurred. Trump and his supporters can scream “fake news” all they want, but indictments are facts and Trump’s behavior throughout points to someone with something to hide. Harding provides an in depth analysis of the Trump-Kremlin tie that dates back to 1987 when the KGB looked on the New York real estate developer as a meaningful target. Harding traces Trump’s relationship with certain Kremlin linked officials, and oligarchs. What emerges is a clear picture of how the Kremlin developed its relationship with Trump that would lead them to support his candidacy for president. Harding explores the role of Donald Trump, Jr. and the infamous June, 2017 meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, former KGB officer Rinat Akhmetshin, and others who offered the president’s son dirt on Hillary Clinton. At first, as in most cases with Trump associates, Trump, Jr. denied the meeting, then said it was about something else, then finally gave in and admitted he met with Russians and was favorable to receiving foreign dirt on Clinton.

    Harding follows his own advice and follows the flow of money. Offshore shell companies, multiple bank accounts, tax havens, payoffs, Russian oligarchs, laundering of funds, money disguised as salary or real estate deals, the role of Deutsche Bank, Trump’s New York creditor are all included in Harding’s expose. Harding relies a great deal on Steele’s research and conclusions and believes that roughly 70-90% of what is in the “Dossier” is true, that being the case, it is clear as to why Trump wants to shut down the Mueller investigation. In fact, Harding provides so many plots and sub plots that at times it is hard to keep up with the flow of information, evidence, and characters discussed. For the Trump people it appears that almost every day they have to put out some sort of brush fire that relates to the Mueller investigation be it the testimony of Donald Trump, Jr., Attorney General Jeff Sessions, or the investigative work of Congressional committees. One thing that is clear from Harding’s investigative work – the Trump Organization has been laundering Russian money for years, and without Russian money the Trump Organization’s many financial issues would have proven disastrous.

    Harding also explores the relationship between former FBI Director James Comey, the role of the Justice Department, and Trump’s attempts to bring Comey on board in dropping the investigation of Michael Flynn. The author takes the reader through the Comey firing and its role in obstruction of justice which the president even admitted to NBC’s Lester Holt. Harding has gone a long way in disentangling the web of Trump’s financial empire, a structure that appears to rest on a great deal of Russian state funds.

    One wonders why certain Republicans have cooperated with Trump’s campaign of fake news and obstruction. Perhaps it is the current tax bill that they are trying to ram through Congress might want to achieve corporate tax cuts and follow the orders of their donors. Be that as it may, if you are interested in learning what Trump is afraid of you to consult Harding’s latest book.

  • Will Byrnes

    All roads lead to Moscow.

    In addition to the media frenzy stirred up by Stormy Daniels and her

    interview, the buzz this week is still on for the newly released

    , another in the flood of books on Swamp Thing, and his history of questionable, illegal, and traitorous entanglements, particularly those involving a certain mafiacratic descendant of the former Soviet Union. Yes, we have that book at home, and will be getting there, but you may not have noticed that back in November 2017 (or four years in Trump time) another book was released that covered a lot of the same territory,

    . I would have called if

    , but that’s just me.

    - image from 5x15.com

    When it comes to covering events relating to Russia, Luke Harding has been there and done that. He was the Moscow bureau chief for

    , an English newspaper of note. In an earlier book by Harding,

    , also released as

    , he reports on his time in Russia from 2007 to 2011. I heartily recommend checking this book out to get a fuller flavor of just what sort of monster Puty is, to pick up some clues as to what lies hidden for now, and get a notion of what may lie ahead. Harding was booted out of Russia due to his coverage, revealing maybe a bit too much of the truth about what was going on among corrupt state officials. He has kept up his reporting, both for

    and in books, offering works on Edward Snowden, on the murder of Russian defector Alexander Litvinenko, on Wikileaks, and on other related topics.

    - image from

    - by Victoria Jones

    looks at the history of connections between Trump, his family and Americans working for and associated with him, and people and institutions in and of Russia. He relies considerably, but not exclusively on the now-famous dossier put together by English private spook Christopher Steele, on further information from Steele, and on information from his own contacts.

    In doing this, he describes how contemporary intelligence work is done, some of it at least, the bit about developing potential foreign assets, and makes a compelling case that Swamp Thing is not only connected to Putin, bigly, but is vulnerable to Russian blackmail, with damaging impact on US national security.

    What a tangled web we weave – image from a March/April 2017 Politico article by Michael Crowley -

    One of the most interesting elements of the book is the history of the Russian connection. Trump had been on Russian radar since 1977 when he married Ivana, a Czechoslovakian. They kept an eye on him through the 1980s. It grew beyond just watching to an earnest interest in 1987, when he was wooed (heaping helpings of flattery were involved) by Yuri Dubinin, the Soviet representative to the UN, to visit Moscow.

    speaking at the RIA Novosti news agency in Russia – image by Grigoriy Sisoev

    Many of Harding’s chapters follow some of the names we have all come to know and loathe. There is a chapter on Carter Page, titled “I Think He’s an Idiot,” which is a quote from one of the Russians to whom Page is linked. One item of interest is the suggestion that Page, in payment for services rendered to Russian entities, was given inside information on a coming privatization of Russian gas company Rosneft, and a message for Trump, that the Russians had compromising material on him.

    - image from AP, by Mikhail Klimentyev

    The chapter titled “General Misha” looks at General Mike Flynn’s contacts with Russia, and explores his possible motives for working with the other side. “General Misha” is how Flynn referred to himself in at least one communication with his Russian colleagues. The chapter on Paul Manafort, “He Does Bastards,” quotes another source on how Manafort seems drawn to the worst national leaders to assist. There are alarming parallels, by the way, between Manafort’s Ukrainian client, Viktor Yanukovych, and Donald Trump. Both are thugs who got a political makeover from a professional candidate-polisher. Both are remarkably corrupt. Both have authoritarian intentions. Both want to lock up their opposition. Yanukovych actually locked up

    political opponents. Swamp Thing must make do with penal envy for now. Yanukovych stole billions from Ukraine. It remains to be seen how much Trump and his fellow looters will have stolen from the American people by the time they are driven out of the country or into jail. Yanokovuch was ultimately booted out in a popular uprising, and now resides, with his billions, in Russia. One can only hope that

    corrupt leader is held to account for

    crimes.

    - image from

    In addition to looking at the specific individuals involved, Harding offers digestible chunks of history. Of great interest is how Russia has grown a cyber warfare capability that exists outside the

    government structure. He examines the various ways in which Russian oligarch money finds its way to the West, with particular focus on money laundering through Deutsche Bank and the Bank of Cyprus, and how vast sums of Russian money passed into and through Trump’s real estate developments, gaining Trump not only huge loans at a time when American banks had learned the hard way not to loan him any money, but vast profits. He offers keen insight into the relationship between nominally private institutions and Putin’s government.

    He looks at the efforts by Steele, domestic intelligence agencies, and foreign intelligence services to inform the FBI what was going on with Trump before the election, and on the bureau sitting on the fact that they were looking into it, while the sainted Mister Comey was doing his best to tilt the election to Trump by making damaging public statements about Hilary Clinton in an October Surprise political hit. Harding looks at the impact of BuzzFeed publishing the entire Steele dossier, while so many other news organizations sat on the info that they all had.

    Trump’s connection with Russia is a national thriller/action-adventure/comedy/horror/surreality show we are all watching at the same time. But just as the after-show gab-fests that follow popular programs can open our eyes to things we might have missed in what we just saw (I am a total junkie for

    , which follows

    ), books like Harding’s can fill in details that we may have missed the first or the first several times we read sundry books on the unraveling horrors, read and/or watched the news and/or the political talk shows, or listened to podcasts.

    - image from CNBC – by John Harwood

    It seems likely that Robert Mueller has had to install extra sprinklers, offer his staff gas masks, and reinforce the concrete in his offices to cope with the growing store of smoking guns he and his staff have been collecting. But that is not what Luke Harding is offering here.

    brings together a diverse range of relevant information in one place.

    is what is going on.

    are the players.

    is how it came to be. If you cannot detect the scent of combustion in this national crisis, you are probably determined not to. Harding points our noses in the proper directions, offers some post-episode explanations, and provides hints as to where the series is heading. We will all be affected by the outcome, whether or not we are tuned in. It is better to know.

    Published – November 16, 2017

    Review Posted – March 30, 2018

    =============================

    You can find Harding’s Twitter feed

    . I did not turn up any other social media from him directly.

    My review of Harding’s book about his time as Moscow Bureau chief -

    – a Knopf promotional video

    Madeline Albright’s book,

    , is definitely worth a look

    -----

    - with Alex Witt

    -----

    -----

    - by Terry Gross – both audio and a transcript.

    -----March 30, 2018 - New York Magazine - a catalog (partial, for sure) of the conflicts of interest and downright corruption of this administration -

    - by Joy Crane and Nick Tabor – Introduction by David Cay Johnston

    Gotta love the illustration that accompanies the above piece

  • Radiantflux

    3rd book for 2018.

    If you have to choose between reading Fire and Fury and this, read this. Harding, using the Steele dossier as a backbone and adding his own personal insights as ex-Moscow correspondent for the Guardian newspaper, paints a vivid picture of Trump's many many links to Russia. If you want to get up to date on what we know the Russia case as of late-2017 this is the book.

    Harding does an excellent job of giving a background on Steele and how his dossier became public (despite the FBI

    3rd book for 2018.

    If you have to choose between reading Fire and Fury and this, read this. Harding, using the Steele dossier as a backbone and adding his own personal insights as ex-Moscow correspondent for the Guardian newspaper, paints a vivid picture of Trump's many many links to Russia. If you want to get up to date on what we know the Russia case as of late-2017 this is the book.

    Harding does an excellent job of giving a background on Steele and how his dossier became public (despite the FBI sitting on it for months) and Russia's subsequent reaction to it (hint: a lot of Russians died of "heart attacks" in mysterious circumstances last year). Putin has been trying to woo Trump for years (if not decades) and undoubtedly has sex tapes dating back years (not just the one mentioned in the Steele dossier - that's just part of the game). Don Jr. has been going Russia for years too, and is undoubtly compromised. The profile of Carter Page (crazy in love with Russia), Flynn (crusader against Islam promoted above his paygrade), Rex Tillerson (who Putin awarded Russia's Order of Friendship in 2013), and Paul Manafort (sociopath-PR manager for dictators - 10 years working on Putin/Ukraine projects) are highly revealing. Has Harding says it's almost like Putin selected the cabinet.

    In addition Trump Tower in NY is apparently the place to live if you are Russian mafia, and Russian mob connections to Trump's businesses are all over the place (is it any surprise that one of his casios was a favorite amongst Russian mobsters?).

    The key to me is the final chapter of Deutsche Bank, which despite Trump having defaulted on for 100s of millions of dollars, was willing (through its private wealth fund) to later bail Trump out for additional 100s of millions of dollars. A completely abnormal thing for any bank to do. Given that the Russian branch of Deutsche Bank is known to have laundered more than a BILLION dollars worth of Russian mob/government money you don't have to be much of a conspiratist to wonder what Trump really owes Putin. It's going to be very interesting to see where this part of the story goes in 2018.

    A highly recommended book.

  • Bill  Kerwin

    “No collusion, no collusion, no collusion!” Our president may repeat it as many times as he chooses, but anyone with a brain—anyone who strives to be objective—can see that the Trump campaign colluded with Russians. Just look at DJT Jr.'s Trump Tower “adoption” meeting: collusion is evident there. But is it

    collusion? Does it rise to the level of conspiracy? Is the web of conspiracy confined to the president’s campaign manager, his son-in-law, his eldest son? Or do the spider-silk filam

    “No collusion, no collusion, no collusion!” Our president may repeat it as many times as he chooses, but anyone with a brain—anyone who strives to be objective—can see that the Trump campaign colluded with Russians. Just look at DJT Jr.'s Trump Tower “adoption” meeting: collusion is evident there. But is it

    collusion? Does it rise to the level of conspiracy? Is the web of conspiracy confined to the president’s campaign manager, his son-in-law, his eldest son? Or do the spider-silk filaments of conspiracy stretch further, as far as the president himself?

    The evidence, often fragmentary, is voluminous and complicated, stretching back forty years, when the Donald, having married Ivana Zelnickova, accompanied her on visits home to the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic. It almost certainly escalated thirty years ago, when, in 1987, the forty-year-old Trump—who had already begun to talk politics—was given the Soviet red-carpet treatment during his visit to Moscow, where he stayed at “Lenin’s Suite” (which certainly would have been bugged) at the National and visited various sites in the city for a possible Trump hotel. Although the hotel itself was never built, Trump said, in his

    , published later the same year, that “he was impressed with the ambition of Soviet officials to make a deal.”

    Soon the evidence becomes murkier, but more interesting, with the crash of 1987, the failure of Trump’s New Jersey casinos, the bankruptcies, the connections with oligarchs, the money laundering charges, and the extraordinary—indeed, statistically remarkable—number of wealthy Russians who purchased the top-floor suites in Trump’s high-end properties throughout the nineties and into the 21st century.

    Luke Harding outlines it all for you, in a straightforward fashion, and he is equally good on the campaign itself, from the curious changes to the Republican Platform Committee’s position on Ukraine, through the mysterious dealings with Deutsche Bank, to the recent revelations about “coffee boy” George Papadopoulos. And of course, Harding deals extensively with Christopher Steele and the “dodgy dossier.”

    Although I read

    , and "Talking Points Memo," and watch Rachel Maddow almost every night, I not only discovered new things, but also found things I thought I knew—particularly about money-laundering and the banks—explained with greater clarity here. (On the other hand, Harding’s ordering principle--which I eventually came to like--can be confusing, for he organizes events not according to when they occurred but

    )

    Unfortunately, though, Harding is better at explaining processes than exploring human character. The definitive account of these fascinating misfits still remains to be written: Carter Page, the hapless Fredo, hopelessly naive and possibly the only real spy in the bunch; Mike “General Misha” Flynn, a bitter Benedict Arnold, a genius at on-the-ground intelligence gathering but also a crackpot conspiracy theorist; and Paul Manafort, a Mephistophelean lobbyist whose specialty was aiding and abetting the worst kleptocrats on earth (Philippines' Ferdinand Marcos, Nigeria’s Sani Abacha, and Zaire’s Mobuto Sese Seko, to name just a few.)

    This is, however, a minor criticism. If you are more interested in facts than personalities, if you want to find out more about Trump, collusion, Chistopher Steele and the Fusion GPS “dossier,” this is a good place to start.

    I’ll end with an anecdote about Jared Kushner and his meeting with Gorkov, head of the VEB bank. It’s not that important really, but I like it, and it shows that the most cynical Russian operative has more poetry in his soul than the president’s son-in-law will ever have:

  • Margitte

    The smoking gun is still missing, but Luke Harding delved deep into any possible source that might proof collusion between Donald Trump and Russia. The author laid out an extensive plot of global, febrile mafia bosses, criminals, money launderers, corrupt politicians and unscrupulous bankers populating the immediate vicinity of The Trump. The author tried to find that missing link between Putin and Trump that had to be there:

    The smoking gun is still missing, but Luke Harding delved deep into any possible source that might proof collusion between Donald Trump and Russia. The author laid out an extensive plot of global, febrile mafia bosses, criminals, money launderers, corrupt politicians and unscrupulous bankers populating the immediate vicinity of The Trump. The author tried to find that missing link between Putin and Trump that had to be there:

    It is astonishing how quickly the book, published in November 2017, became outdated with all the latest revelation around the information that was fed to Steele by DEM sources since then, exposing a much wider intrigue than ever suspected.

    On November 1st, 2017 in an interview with Trevor Noah (

    ), Hillary Clinton admitted that her campaign paid for the 'opposition research', which she recently vehemently denied again. She also denied any knowledge of the dossier, yet, her tweets in the late 2016 time period spins another story:

    :

    The following tweet showed her annoyance with the press for not releasing the dossier as was planned, since the FBI did not agree on its content, which became clear in the book)

    By this time Hillary was furious with the dossier still making its rounds without being published.

    From the book:

    (According to various news media website, as well as Clinton's early morning and late night tweets, the dossier were circulating much earlier through intelligence agencies and DEM circles).

    .

    (There is an irony in this statement by the author. While Trump is accused of collusion, the Hilary camp already paid millions to obtain filth against Trump from the same Russians. The Uranium One deal was also between the DEM officials in office, the Clinton cabal and the Russians. - not mentioned in the book)

    Perhaps the book was post haste, and could have been a much more gripping thriller if it included the latest Senate Committee investigations. However, the author focused on the role of Russians in the Trump campaign (as well as his long relationship with the Russians). He highlights how Hillary's efforts were shipwrecked with the compromised DNC servers. Harding provide enough connections to embed Putin and the Russians firmly and cozily in the 2016 elections. The detail of the Steele dossier was the prime course of the political feast of indecency in this book.

    According to Harding , Trump was a human wrecking ball who flattened everything in his path, including the Republican Party's aghast, frozen-to-the-spot establishment. Marco Rubio, Jed Bush, Ted Cruz -- all were batted aside, taunted, crushed.

    The author also name the

    , backed by billionaire Republican Paul Singer, as the original commissioners of Fusion GPS to investigate Trump. The investigation would later continue with DNC funding through their lawyers.

    Harding made an effort to extensively profile all the relevant role players in the saga. A gobsmacking parade of murky, dodgy international players, which brings a different perspective to the current events in the USA. One of the interviewees described Carter Page as his most 'wakaddoodle alumnus". According to his sources, Trump was blackmailed by the Russians while Hillary was sabotaged right out of the game.

    Although most of his sources are generic, and only allegations made, nobody is providing their intel on a platter, the book provides an disturbing alternative viewpoint to current events. It is a well-written book, destined to feed the opposition to a president who should never have become the leader of the free world, according to his enemies.

    The Clinton-cabal was furious with the delay of the dossier. On October 31st, Corn wrote about it for the first time. However, at the same time,

    published a story saying that the FBI hand not found any 'conclusive or direct link' between Trump and Russian officials. With much pressure on the media, after Steele's relationship with the FBI tanked, the unverified document in its entirety was finally published by

    in January 2017. Hardy also confirmed that it was offered to various media outlets without success.

    The New York Times, The Washington Post, Yahoo! News, The New Yorker,

    CNN.

    Buzzfeed

    Buzzfeed

    The Washington Post

    New York Post

    Senate minority leader, Harry Reid peppered the FBI to release the information.

    ...

    ...

    ...

    CNN was the first to report on the FBI investigation into the matter, although they refused to published the lurid salacious, unverified details of the 'honey trap'.

    In an accompanying article Buzzfeed said it had published this document "so that Americans can make up their own minds." The allegations, it said, had "circulated at the highest levels of the U.S. government." It noted the report was unverified and had some errors.

    The author did not mention Trumps allegations of wiretapping, but did mention the other applications to the FISA court to wiretap other people in Trump circles, which seemed to have valid information supporting them. Ample 'evidence' for such application is provided in the book, although Harding had no access to the actual FISA applications, as he admitted in the book.

    It is a riveting book. It could have been more in-depth, there was enough information to feed the masses, but was not done. For instance, Christopher Steele mentioned in one of his reports to the FBI that the Russians had incriminating evidence on both Hillary and Donald. He offered this information to the FBI. But the DNC only wanted a dossier on Trump. In that sense the book slightly expose more than just the the Russian-Trump dossier.

    It was worth the read. The author did really good research and kept me riveted until the very end. As an experienced journalist he knew exactly how to keep the reader chained to his words. It is an excellent non-fictional read to consider. Well, just another piece of history that needed to be introduced to the alternative archives of world affairs.

  • Mehrsa

    I'm no fan of Trump, but I guess I am just not convinced that the dossier is real and that Trump is a Russian puppet. I think he's incompetent and all of his people are beyond the pale, but purposeful collusion with Russia? Even after the reading this book, I am not convinced the sins of the regime rise to the level of treason. Don't get me wrong, I think Trump is not qualified to hold this office and will go down in history as our worst president, but I guess I just don't really buy this story.

    I'm no fan of Trump, but I guess I am just not convinced that the dossier is real and that Trump is a Russian puppet. I think he's incompetent and all of his people are beyond the pale, but purposeful collusion with Russia? Even after the reading this book, I am not convinced the sins of the regime rise to the level of treason. Don't get me wrong, I think Trump is not qualified to hold this office and will go down in history as our worst president, but I guess I just don't really buy this story. And Harding does not convince me here. I hope I'm wrong and it's all true.

  • Joe

    Unfortunately, nothing new here and even if one is simply looking for a recap or chronology – this book doesn’t help. The narrative is jumbled, hindered by starts and stops. The writing is overwrought with many of the digressions/topics superfluous. And the author’s self-aggrandizement by continually inserting himself into the story serves no purpose except to aggravate the reader.

    Pass on this one.

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