Thursday, March 8, 2018

The Prince of Toads

(By American Zen’s Mike Flannigan, on loan from Ari)
I remember telling him that if Franklin Roosevelt could work with Joseph Stalin to defeat Nazi fascism, then certainly Donald Trump could work with Vladi­mir Putin to defeat Islamic fascism.” - Blackwater founder Erik Prince before Congress, November 2017
Erik Prince is your classic Dollar-a-Year Man. But, as with the Iraq War off of which he'd profited very handsomely, he could wind up making much more than a dollar a year of tax-payer funds if Trump decides to hire Prince and his private security arm of the killer elite that formerly went under the name Blackwater.
     But first things first. Just yesterday, it emerged that Robert Mueller could have more on Donald Trump than even the most wildly expectant of us could've asked for. And Erik Prince's name popped up. It seems, thanks to the testimony of one George Nader, a Lebanese businessman who'd helped broker a meeting between Prince and another prince, this one Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi. But the skeikh wasn't the only one in attendance at this Seychelles meeting that took place around mid January last year, or about a week before Trump''s inauguration.
     Prince had also met with an Emirati delegate as well as Kirill Dmitriev, the head of a hedge fund controlled by the Kremlin. So, what was so alarming about this seemingly innocuous business meeting to which Prince went, so he averred to Congressional investigators last November, as a private businessman?
     Several things, actually. While laughably denying he was there as an envoy for the incoming Trump administration, it's come out from Nader that Prince asked the Russians for a secret back channel between the Kremlin and the White House. You know, sort of like what Kushner had tried just the month before.
     This isn't a wild guess or an unsubstantiated conspiracy theory. We, and the Mueller team, got this straight from Nader himself, who'd brokered the Seychelles meeting about a year before he was picked up by the FBI and served search warrants. He's reportedly testified before the grand jury at least once and with Mueller's team on several occasions.

Another Nader as Spoiler
George Nader, not to be confused with the late TV and film actor or Ralph Nader, the spoiler in the 2000 election, was chosen to broker this meeting for obvious reasons. Being a Lebanese-American, Nader had done business on countless previous occasions with the UAE as well, apparently, Trump's senior aides. He could be trusted to navigate Prince and others through what is obviously very complicated diplomatic waters in the Middle East.
     When Nader was picked up at Dulles, he was on his way to Mar-a-Lago supposedly to celebrate Trump's first year in office. Making this meeting especially suspicious was the fact that just after the 2016 election, Crown Prince Mohammed visited Trump at Trump Tower without even notifying the outgoing Obama administration. And this was at the exact same time Kushner met with Sergei Kislyak, then the Russian ambassador to the US, about setting up the back channel between the Kremlin and the White House.
     Then there's also the UAE's vast sums of money, much of it being funneled into Dmitriev's Kremlin-controlled hedge fund (specifically, $6 billion in 2013). This raises the issue of whether the Trump campaign accepted foreign money, which is strictly forbidden. And it holds out the very strong likelihood that Prince lied in his testimony before Congress last November about the meeting.
     That would be the infamous "after meeting" between Prince and a member of the Emerati delegation, which Prince risibly downplayed as just a friendly 30 minute-long chat between two guys having a beer. If it's ever proved that Prince was there to set up a back door channel between Putin and Trump, it means he perjured himself when testifying before Congress (which wouldn't be the first time) when he claimed he went to the Seychelles as a private businessman.
     And that brings us to Prince lobbying hard to set up his own intelligence network within the government with the avowed purpose of fighting so-called "deep state enemies" within the established government intelligence community that Trump's been sneering at since he was on the campaign trail. As proof of how scummy this hare-brained scheme is, they've even brought in Oliver "Snow Tires" North (who'd also lied to Congress after Iran-Contra was broken) for credibility's sake and that CIA Director Mike Pompeo is fully on board with this plan to undermine his own agency.
     Which, as Prince's sister Betsy DeVos had proved time and again, is exactly the reason why Trump picked his kakistocratic Cabinet.

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