Mueller Report Open Thread: Assange/Russia/Trump Collusion Edition

Trump is a godsdamned magnet for monsters. Per Kevin Pousen, at the Daily Beast:

As laid out by Mueller, Assange’s involvement in Russia’s election interference began with a June 14, 2016 direct message to WikiLeaks’ Twitter account from “DC Leaks,” one of the false fronts created by the Russians to launder their hacked material.

“You announced your organization was preparing to publish more Hillary’s emails,” the message read, according to Mueller’s report. “We are ready to support you. We have some sensitive information too, in particular, her financial documents. Let’s do it together. What do you think about publishing our info at the same moment? Thank you.”

A week later, WikiLeaks reached out to a second GRU persona, Guccifer 2.0, and pitched WikiLeaks as the best outlet for the hacked material. On July 14, 2016, GRU officers used a Guccifer 2.0 email address to send WikiLeaks an encrypted one-gigabyte file named “wk dnc link I .txt.gpg.” Assange confirmed receipt, and on July 22 he published 20,000 DNC emails stolen during the GRU’s breach…

Rich was a 27-year-old DNC staffer when he was gunned down in what police have described as a robbery gone wrong. The unsolved murder timed shortly before Assange’s DNC leaks spoke volumes to inhabitants of the far right wing fringe, where it’s long been an article of faith that Hillary Clinton has her enemies killed…

With Assange behind it, the Seth Rich hoax moved into the almost-mainstream, spawning a quickly-retracted report on Fox News, and a series of “investigations” by Assange ally Sean Hannity. It also wreaked havoc in the lives of Rich’s surviving family, particularly his anguished parents who later begged perpetrators of the charade “to give us peace, and to give law enforcement the time and space to do the investigation they need to solve our son’s murder.”

Even as he was ruthlessly framing Rich to protect himself, the GRU, or both, Assange was privately communicating with his real sources to arrange the transfer of the second election leak, material the GRU stole from John Podesta’s Gmail account…

The Mueller report quotes from cryptic emails and messages exchanged between WikiLeaks and the GRU accounts in September 2016, and based on metadata, Mueller suspects the transfer occurred on September 19. But the actual transmittal of the massive Podesta haul evidently took place in a channel that Mueller couldn’t crack. The report notes the possibility that, this time, the files were simply carried into the Ecuadorian Embassy by one of Assange’s visitors.

In the end, the most charitable interpretation of Assange’s “dissembling” as Mueller calls it, in the Seth Rich hoax is that he genuinely couldn’t rule out the possibility that Rich was his source. The Mueller report demolished that final moral refuge. Rich had been dead four days when Assange received the DNC files...

67 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    I will forever be filled with rage at the joy these awful people felt on Election Night 2016.

  2. 2
    chopper says:

    Trump is a godsdamned magnet for monsters

    so when junior gets in trouble again, it’ll be the return of the son of monster magnet?

  3. 3
    Gin & Tonic says:

    I’m so old I can remember when Julian Assange was a darling of the left.

  4. 4
  5. 5

    Nancy Pelosi is up to something, but I don’t know what. My guess is that we won’t know until sometime next week.

  6. 6
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @chopper: I bow in your general direction.

  7. 7
    debbie says:


    Schiff needs to subpoena McConnell and compel him to testify about his treachery.

  8. 8
    JPL says:

    @debbie: That would be so awesome.

  9. 9

    @Baud: You and me both. From the election night to the end of March were the worst few months in my life.

  10. 10
    smintheus says:

    Countdown clock is running: How long before Romney apologizes abjectly for suggesting there is any dishonesty or “misdirection” associated with the Trump campaign? Before 11:35 PM this evening is my best guess.

  11. 11

    @Gin & Tonic: Not just the left, a darling of this blog. As was Greenwald.

  12. 12
    debbie says:


    I don’t remember ever approving of Assange, and I tired of Greenwald as soon as his posts became a freakin’ mile long.

  13. 13
    kindness says:

    There is nothing Mitch can do to rectify what he has done to our country. Mitch knew that $3.3 M the Senate Reelection committee got from the NRA was from the Russians.

    OK, there is one thing that would make me feel better. Mitch can kill himself. Mind you I’m not suggesting anyone kill him. We aren’t Republicans after all.

  14. 14
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Totally off topic, but you wouldn’t happen to have a recipe offhand for that stew you posted a couple days ago, would you?

  15. 15

    @debbie: Blog father was a fan. Metadata and dronez were the thing. And everyday was Obama’s Katrina. I wish to return to those times.

  16. 16
    piratedan says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: If Nancy is dropping shoes, is it possible that all of the footsie that the GOP was playing with the Russians in coordinating social media had to be handled by someone halfway competent. I really have a hard time giving credit to the Trump Campaign, but the RNCC and the GOP hierarchy certainly sounds plausible.

    Someone had to have the local analytics database to reference in order for them to know where efforts would do the most good in coordination with the voter suppression (and for all we know, election results could have been hacked, i.e. Dem votes undercounted, GOP votes over counted or votes shunted off to 3rd party candidates) and who else would have that other than Priebus and McConnell and maybe even Paul Ryan.

  17. 17
    debbie says:


    I’m with you there. What I wouldn’t give to have just one peaceful day.

  18. 18
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    The more I hear about Assage the more I wouldn’t weep if I read he was found to have hanged himself in his jail cell.

  19. 19
    debbie says:


    Steve Bannon’s your man for that. Is he mentioned at all in Mueller’s report?

  20. 20
    Kay says:

    Look at crusading freedom fighter Julian Assange, sounding just like the ordinary Right wing political operative he is. See, Julian needs the “journalism” to drop right before the DNC, because if BERNIE supporters go over to CLINTON, well, there goes his candidate’s Trump’s chances.

  21. 21
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @kindness: Resigning and giving most of his wealth to the poor wouldn’t be better?

  22. 22

    @piratedan: How did Snowden and Greenwald help is what I want to know.

  23. 23
    ruemara says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Same. When Glenn was a principled truthteller and WikiLeaks was bringing us the facts about US warcrimes and the DNC not liking Bernie enough.

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: Let’s be honest. The man will slip and fall in the bathtub and out a 10th story window.

  24. 24

    A shot across the bow

  25. 25

    There are no voters more deluded than the true left. I was looking at political Twitter in India and guess what, all the purity lefties are hasing a sad regarding Assange. Its always the Cold War and CIA is the enemy in their world.

  26. 26
    MomSense says:


    There were a few of us who never fell for it.

  27. 27
    david says:

    I wondered why Kate Smith was trending this morning,
    then I just now open up YouTube and there’s this song recommendation…

    maybe she should have stuck with God Bless America and retired on those royalties.

  28. 28
    ruemara says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Good. Sounds like Nancy is getting ready to use her skills.

    @schrodingers_cat: I swear they’re all the same, no matter the nation.

  29. 29

    @MomSense: Agreed. But many of the the true lefties, ones who are prematurely discussing right now how they will to crawl over broken glass to vote for BS if he wins the nom.

  30. 30

    @mrmoshpotato: I don’t have a formal recipe, but this approximates it –

    1 onion
    1 lb stew pork
    meat stock
    bay leaf
    1/2 lb cleaned roasted chile
    1 tsp oregano
    1/2 tsp ground cumin
    salt to taste
    Brown the onion and meat in the lard. Add stock and bay leaf and cook until the meat is tender. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook until the potatoes are done.

  31. 31
    kindness says:

    @mrmoshpotato: That would be a great start. But just a start.

  32. 32
    Jay says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Other than Assange, nothing remained of the 2010 Wikileaks compared to the 2016 Wikileaks.

    Over the years, Cofounders, Staff, Media Partners and Hacker Collectives all fled as Wikileaks descended into a CT pushing troll farm and partnered with Russia.

    More than a few people and Organizations once “valued” on the Internet have descended into madness on the Internet.

  33. 33
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Much thanks! 😀

  34. 34
    Millard Filmore says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: The less redacted viewing came with conditions … viewed only in a secure DOJ facility, no copies, no notes, no discussing with others what was seen.

  35. 35
    JaySinWA says:

    @mrmoshpotato: True confessions would be helpful as well.

  36. 36
    trollhattan says:

    Poor building codes lead to highrise bathtubs being installed adjacent to large windows that open completely. You could look it up. Such buildings may or may not be emblazoned “TRUMP.”

    Lord knows, the dude looks like he could use a good soak and some soap.

  37. 37
    piratedan says:

    @schrodingers_cat: i bet Snowden gave them lots of clues regarding server setups, partitions, backdoors and operating system protocols… system architecture roadmaps that would allow the hackers to know what kind of data was kept where and possible points of entries…

    i.e. not so much here are the keys to the vault, but here’s the blueprint of the vault, you figure out how to get in kind of stuff….

  38. 38
    chopper says:

    @Millard Filmore:

    lol, what makes barr think he has the leverage here?

  39. 39

    The tiny part of me that is curious about conspiracy theories wants to propose that Seth Rich was murdered by Russian intelligence to provide an explanation for the emails and a target for conspiracy theories. I realize it’s far more likely that his death was just a coincidence and they settled on him because it was convenient, but I can’t completely give up on the idea the Russians had him killed.

  40. 40
    germy says:

    This video of Julian:

    He very casually makes the connection between Seth Rich and his informants. It’s chilling to watch.

  41. 41

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques:

    The more I hear about Assage the more I wouldn’t weep if I read he was found to have hanged himself in his jail cell.

    Hell no. I want a messy, ugly trial in which all his misdeeds can be put on display.

  42. 42
    Millard Filmore says:


    lol, what makes barr think he has the leverage here?

    My guess is its simply a delaying tactic, stonewall after the rejection.

  43. 43
    Jay says:


    Even Snowden disavowed Wikileaks,

    @Roger Moore:

    Seth Rich’s family has asked people to stop spreading CT about his murder.

  44. 44


    OK, there is one thing that would make me feel better. Mitch can kill himself.

    I would be much happier if he spilled his guts. His death wouldn’t do much, but his open admission of cooperating with the Russians would have a big effect.

  45. 45
    JPL says:

    @david: Oh From the NYTimes

    In “Pickaninny Heaven,” Smith sings of a place where “great big watermelons roll around and get in your way.” “Pickaninny” is a demeaning term for a black child. In the 1933 film “Hello Everybody,” Smith sings the song to a group of black orphans listening on the radio.
    “That’s Why Darkies Were Born” begins: “Someone had to pick the cotton,/ Someone had to pick the corn,/ Someone had to slave and be able to sing,/ That’s why darkies were born.”

    Good move by the Yankees but still fuckem

  46. 46
  47. 47
    Tazj says:

    Mitch McConnell still has people to shill for him. Scott Jennings, who worked for George W. Bush and was a campaign advisor for Mitch McConnell, wrote this opinion piece for CNN today. ” Mueller report looks bad for Obama.” They’re shameless.

  48. 48
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @Roger Moore: Can the TV coverage of JAss’s trial include Chuck Todd getting punched every time he tries to bothsides the shit of any of the proceedings?

  49. 49
    piratedan says:

    @Jay: the GRU didn’t, plus whose creature is Snowden now?

    Sure he can issue a statement, doesn’t mean diddly because of who is paying his rent….

  50. 50

    @Roger Moore: I must confess I would be happiest if he metaphorically spilled his guts as you say, then literally spilled his guts. It’s the only way he can regain some small semblance of honour. (Very small.)

    (Donating his entire fortune to the poor he’s spent his whole life hurting would also help a small amount, but again, very small.)

  51. 51
  52. 52
    JR says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: maybe gargling in his public execution like Julius Streicher

  53. 53
    PPCLI says:

    The near-complete obliteration of the Wikileaks section has to be kept under a spotlight. There is no reason to trust Barr that there is a good reason for hiding it, as opposed to a desperate attempt to keep it from seeing the light of day. That alone makes it imperative that Congressional Democrats see the full report plus backup material.

  54. 54
    piratedan says:

    @Jay: Jay….

    1) where is he living….
    2) who controls that country
    3) do you REALLY think he’s his own man….

  55. 55

    @PPCLI: I mean, there’s a possibility that it’s being withheld to avoid prejudicing the Stone jury, since it’s obvious Wikileaks will be central to that case. If it doesn’t come out after that trial, though, I agree there’s almost certainly some sort of nefarious intent behind it.

    And all of that is irrelevant where Congress is concerned – it’s only a valid reason to keep the material from the public.

    Who was that judge who said he might review Barr’s redactions? Maybe he’ll weigh in on this.

  56. 56
    Jay says:


    He’s not supposed to be living in Russia, he’s supposed to be living in Equador,

    And these days, you can make a living and contribution from almost anywhere.

    If FPF is a Russian front, then your are really going to run into problems with any Western Media cite except Still Dead Briebart and Faux News.

  57. 57
    Cacti says:

    I wonder if inmate Manning still feels righteous about all the time she spent behind bars for this piece of filth.

  58. 58
    ola azul says:

    Hadda comment in moderation (I could see it, for awhile, but had italics-text preceding post advising comment twere in moderation). Then it disappeared.

    (I’da made it shorter, but I ran outta time, promise!)

    Ah, well, that’s how this day’s gone, expect. At the drill press, hadda evil molten shard onna 1/2″ piece a stainless steel material launch itself *under* my safety glasses (I did mention twere evil, right?) and weld itself on the top and bottom portion of eye covers (not lids, plural; singular eye but whatsa name for lower portion?). No ready water, so spittle into filthy begrimed hand to cool and pry scalded section out, with corresponding biological need for coagulation. Go biology!

    Very thankful my eye weren’t burnt up, but it is a cheery commendation of the body’s ability to reactively respond inna timely manner. Got tender flesh burnt on both sides of top n bottom eye covers, exactly where eyeball white is, which is where shard were heading before reflex (certainly not me) took over.

    Feels like i gotta lucky and/or good eye goalie. Thanks, eye goalie! Yer the best!

  59. 59
    piratedan says:

    @Jay: i think this very much depends on who you think Edward Snowden is…

    do you believe that he’s a person who felt genuinely shocked at the Deep State structure of the US? Was he a dupe? a naif? a traitor

    I come down on the latter, based on his actions… ymmv.

    Hence whoever he is with and where he is at (you say Ecudaor, and I am not exactly convinced that this is the case), is colored by those actions (espionage, no matter how well intentioned).

    So, I’ll just stop there on this issue because I feel that we’re just talking past each other at this point.

  60. 60
    Steeplejack says:

    I hope someone can answer this Mueller question for me:

    With the release of the (redacted) report, one friend in particular—although I have seen similar comments on line—has been gnashing his teeth about Mueller’s “passivity” and lamenting in particular why he “didn’t interview Trump when he had the chance.”

    Then last night I caught the tail end of some discussion on Brian Williams’s show where Josh Gerstein of Politico seemed to be saying that Trump definitively refused to be interviewed.

    Was there something about this in the Mueller report? It dawned on me that it would be completely in character for Trump to blow smoke in public about being willing to talk to Mueller but absolutely refuse in private.

    It seems like the conventional wisdom is that there was some backing and forthing about Trump being interviewed and then Mueller being at fault for not jumping on the opportunity one of the times when Trump said, “Sure, be glad to.”

    Okay, this turned into an essay question. Any insights appreciated.

  61. 61
    ola azul says:


    Cannot bring receipts, as the kidz sez, but my strong impression is that when one compares the public “No witch hunt. No COLLUSION! No OBSTRUCTION!” Trump with the private “This is the end of my presidency. I’m fucked” Trump, your question (intuitively but not legally!) answers itself.

  62. 62
    Duane says:

    Hannity and Assange together in a jail cell, with plenty of bedsheets, is what I want to see. Then they carry out a suicide pact.

  63. 63
    Another Scott says:

    @Steeplejack: The report discusses in some detail their attempts to interview Donnie. He strung them along for almost a year. The end of the report is the written Q&A –

    Q – When did you first learn thus and so.
    A – I have no specific recollection about thus and so.

    It’s in there.



  64. 64

    @Another Scott: Donny Dollhands promised us that he had one of the great memories of all time. Ergo, I think it’s fair to conclude that he was either lying when he said that, or when he submitted those answers to Mueller. Or, and this is much likelier, both.

    For my next trick, I will proceed to demonstrate that water is wet. Thank you; I’ll be here all week. Don’t forget to tip your waiter.

  65. 65
    Jay says:


    The Rectifications of Name digs deep on Drumph’s “memory loss” portions of the redacted Meuller Report,


  66. 66
    Salty Sam says:


    @Gin & Tonic: Not just the left, a darling of this blog. As was Greenwald.

    I was initially interested in GG when he was making serious noise about the post 9/11 surveillance state- quickly grew tired of his long-winded diatribes that went nowhere. He has only gone downhill. Steeply.

    Likewise, when Wikileaks initially leaked the helicopter massacre footage, I thought it was a good thing, and supported the idea of a whistleblower site. I don’t recall when it became clear there was ratfucking going on with it (something something Snowden something), but I never considered Assange a “darling”. I’m glad his true colors came out though.

    Both of those topics still hold my interest, but I’ve never idolized the people working on them…

  67. 67


    Nah, just give each viewer a rheostat directly connected to Chuck’s on-air seat

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