The Russian conspiracy that threatens to shake American democracy to its very core
We’ve compiled the series of events in what could well be the greatest scandal in the history of the United States into an easy-to-understand digest.
On November 8th, 2016, Donald Trump was elected as the 45th President of the United States. A centerpiece of his campaign was the return to normalcy of relations between the US and Russia.
Government agencies, through political research firms, began investigating damaging information on Trump as soon as he began his early campaign as for the Republican Party nomination in September 2015.
Political research firms discover that Putin is supporting Trump, and has launched a cyber attack against Hillary Clinton’s campaign. CNN reveals the allegations in an explosive report, bringing the issue to the forefront of national debate.
After he is elected and sworn in as President, Trump completely ignores questions from CNN.
However, FBI chief James Comey interviews Michael Flynn, Trump’s aide, and National Security Adviser, regarding possible collusion with Russia.
It would have been illegal for Flynn to discuss economic sanctions against Russia with the Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, even as a civilian.
Flynn is speedily fired a mere 4 days after the initial reports.
According to Comey, Trump asked him to stop investigating Flynn after his firing.
Comey confirms that the Trump campaign is also under investigation for suspected collusion with Russia.
Trump suddenly fires Comey from his position as chief of the FBI. If it can be proved that he did this to avoid being investigated himself, it would qualify as obstruction of justice similar to Nixon’s predicament during the Watergate scandal. Obstruction of justice is an impeachable offense.
As criticism of Trump grows, the Department of Justice appoints Robert Mueller as Special Counsel to investigate the reports of collusion with Russian agents during the 2016 election.
Furthermore, explosive new accusations reveal that Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, and Senior Advisor, suggested the creation of a secret communications channel with Moscow to Sergey Kislyak prior to the transition of power to the Trump administration. Just like Flynn, he is under suspicion of treason.
If Trump is charged with obstruction of justice, he could become the fourth President in the history of the United States to undergo impeachment procedures.
Currently, the FBI (under Special Counsel Mueller), the House Intelligence Committee (under David Nunes), and the Senate Intelligence Committee (under Richard Burr) are all in the middle of investigating the Russian collusion allegations.
Facebook also announced that it sold around 3000 political ads that were favorable to Russia to around 500 fake accounts and sites from June 2015 to May 2017. Mark Zuckerberg is set to continue investigating whether Facebook was used by Russia to meddle in US elections.
On December 1st, 2017, Flynn admitted to the charge of making false statements to the FBI under a plea deal with Mueller. He was said to have also admitted that Kushner communicated with the Russians. Moves to investigate the very core of the Trump leadership team are likely to grow stronger in the future.
Public opinion regarding the Russian accusations is growing stronger day by day. Considering that the Watergate investigations took 2 years and 2 months to complete, the Trump administration will likely continue for the time being. But with Flynn indicating that he is ready to fully cooperate with the FBI, it is well within the realm of possibility that the investigation could make very quick progress.