THE TRUMP/RUSSIA TIMELINE: APRIL 24, 2017 UPDATE

In this week’s updates to my Bill Moyers & Company Timeline, Roger Stone has another “turn in the barrel.” He gets there with his comments and tweets about Julian Assange and WikiLeaks — the vehicles by which Russian intelligence interfered with the U.S. election and helped Stone’s candidate Donald Trump win.

And there’s new information about how documents that Russians had stolen when they hacked the DNC might have influenced FBI Director James Comey to make his highly unusual pre-election announcements relating to the Clinton email investigation.

To see how the latest entries continue to fill out the sordid Trump/Russia saga, review the entire Timeline.

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  • July 5, 2016: FBI Director James Comey holds a press conference announcing that the bureau has closed its yearlong investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was secretary of state. Comey says that Clinton had been “extremely careless” in handling “very sensitive, highly classified information,” but does not recommend prosecution. Typically, when the FBI recommends closing a case, the Justice Department agrees and no public statement follows. One possible reason for Comey’s unusual announcement could be a document that the FBI knew Russians had stolen when they hacked the DNC. In it, a Democratic operative suggested that Attorney General Lynch would not let the Clinton email investigation go too far. Comey may have worried that if Lynch announced end of the case, and Russia later leaked the document, doubts would arise about the investigation’s independence. [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • By the end of July 2016: The FBI has opened an investigation into possible collusion between members of the Trump campaign and Russian operatives. [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Aug. 10, 2016: Roger Stone addresses a Broward County Florida Republican Party group. An audience member asks (near the 46-minute mark of the video) about his predictions for an “October surprise” based on materials in the possession of WikiLeaks’ founder Julian Assange. In response, Stone says,“I actually have communicated with Assange.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]
  • Aug. 12, 2016: On a #MAGA podcast (around the 7-minute mark), Stone says, “I believe Julian Assange — who I think is a hero fighting the police state — has all of the emails that Huma [Abedin] and Cheryl Mills, the two Clinton aides, thought they had erased….I think Assange has them. I know he has them. And I believe he will expose the American people to this information, you know, in the next 90 days.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]
  • Also on Aug. 12, 2016: Stone tells Alex Stone that says he was “in communication with Julian Assange.” Later, Stone continues, “I am not at liberty to discuss what I have.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Also on Aug. 16, 2016: With “TRUMP 2000” posters in the background from what appears to he Stone’s home office, he again tells radio host Alex Jones (around the 6-1/2-minute mark of the interview) that he has had “back-channel communications” with WikiLeaks and Julian Assange who have “political dynamite” on the Clintons. [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]
  • Also on Aug. 16, 2016: In an interview on The Blaze, Stone says he has “communicated” with Julian Assange through a “mutual acquaintance.” He continues, “I think that Assange is going to be very influential in this election….” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Aug. 18, 2016: In a C-SPAN interview, Stone says (around the 48-minute mark of the broadcast) that he’s never met Julian Assange, but he has been in touch with him “through an intermediary—somebody who is a mutual friend.” He continues, “I expect you’re going to see more from Mr. Assange.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Also on Aug. 21, 2016: On a local Maryland radio program, Stone denies (around the 6-minute mark of the broadcast) that Guccifer 2.0 is connected to the Russians on local Maryland radio: “The DNC leaks that nailed Deborah Wasserman Schultz in the heist against Bernie Sanders was not leaked by the Russians, it was leaked by Cruccifer [sic] 2, I should say hacked and leaked first by Cruccifer 2, well known hacker who is not in the employment of the Russians, and then WikiLeaks. So that whole claim is a canard.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Aug. 26, 2016: In an interview with Breitbart Radio, Stone says (near the ten-minute mark of the interview), “I’m almost confident Mr. Assange has virtually every one of the emails that the Clinton henchwomen, Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills, thought that they had deleted, and I suspect that he’s going to drop them at strategic times in the run up to the rest of this race.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]
  • Aug. 29, 2016: Stone tells a local Florida radio interviewer (around the seven-minute mark of the interview), “We’re going to, I think, from WikiLeaks and other leakers see the nexus between the Clinton Foundation and the State Department.” About Assange, he says, “Perhaps he has the smoking gun that makes this handcuff time.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Sept. 16, 2016: Stone says on Boston Herald Radio (around the 12-minute mark), “I expect Julian Assange and the WikiLeaks people to drop a payload of new documents on Hillary on a weekly basis fairly soon. And that of course will answer the question of exactly what was erased on that email server.” He says he’s in touch with Assange “through an intermediary.” He also says that Hillary Clinton’s association with Putin and Russia’s oligarchs was “far more troubling to me than Donald Trump’s.” [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Oct. 28, 2016: In a letter to key leaders in the House and Senate, FBI Director Comey says that in connection with the bureau’s closed investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server, it was reviewing emails on a computer belonging to Clinton adviser Huma Abedin. Comey says nothing about the ongoing FBI investigation into connections between the Trump campaign and Russia. [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Nov. 5, 2016: In a letter to key leaders in Congress, Comey confirms that the FBI’s has completed its review of the additional Abedin emails and, as a result, has not changed its earlier recommendation not to recommend prosecuting Clinton for her use of a private email server. [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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  • Also on March 4, 2017: Stone tweets – then deletes – about his communications with Assange: “[N]ever denied perfectly legal back channel to Assange who indeed had the goods on #CrookedHillary.” Forty minutes later, the tweet was gone. [Supplemented on April 24, 2017]

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