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February 27, 2024

Former FBI informant Alexander Smirnov has definitely been “caught in the ‘Crossfire’” of the Biden international financial scandal --- Ukraine/Russia branch.

Not only has he been taken back into custody on charges of obstructing justice and giving false information to the FBI --- which seems quite out of character for him after working for them for well over a decade as a highly-paid, reliable source --- but now the judge in the case says he’ll be jailed indefinitely after it was determined he was a flight risk.

After Smirnov was arrested upon his arrival from overseas at Las Vegas International Airport earlier this month, a federal magistrate dismissed prosecutors’ flight-risk argument and released Smirnov with conditions, taking his passport and requiring him to wear an ankle monitor.  But that did not satisfy the judge who will be presiding over his case, Federal District Judge Otis D. Wright II of the Central District of California, who on Monday said the defendant will be denied bail and retained until trial.

Here’s the local perspective, from the LOS ANGELES TIMES, a surprisingly even-handed write-up with detail we haven’t seen elsewhere.

When Smirnov was re-arrested, nine handguns and $980,000 in cash were found in his condo.  (We’ve learned from Fani Willis’ recent testimony that keeping that kind of money in your condo is perfectly normal --- if you’re a black woman.  I digress.)

Anyway, Smirnov is a dual American/Israeli citizen.  He pleaded not guilty during Monday’s hearing.  We’d like to know how they determined that what he told them Zlochevsky had said about the Bidens was fabricated, as that hasn’t really been made clear.  Special Counsel David Weiss is saying that Smirnov admitted that Russian intelligence officials were “involved in passing” him the story.  Does that mean this particular piece of information was necessarily false?  Regardless, mainstream “journalists” are now running with this, agreeing with Democrats (typical) who ludicrously say there’s no longer any evidence of Biden bribery and influence peddling.

As Matt Vespa at REDSTATE has said, “In truth, the allegations by Weiss about Smirnov prove no such thing. It is well established that President Biden’s son, Hunter, and brother, James, sold access. There are many emails and text messages, for example, showing the two men promising meetings and involvement from President Joe Biden in various business deals. And one of Hunter Biden’s business partners has testified that selling access to Joe Biden was at the center of various deals the men sought with investors around the world, from Ukraine to China.” 

But the “Justice” Department now claims that Smirnov was lying in a 2020 FBI interview when he said Burisma founder Mykola Zlochevsky had claimed he’d “paid one Biden $5 million and another Biden $5 million.”  The indictment says this was “false derogatory information” about Joe Biden (“Public Official 1”) and son Hunter (“Businessperson 1”).  More details about Smirnov’s re-arrest and detention in Vespa’s most recent column...

By the way, as campaign season moves forward, we’ll all be seeing a lot more in the media about “Russian operatives” and “Russian disinformation,” with the message that these are being used to help Trump.  It’s hard to believe they’re trotting out the “Russia” narrative again when we know it was “Trumped-up” to begin with.  But Smirnov’s detention certainly pushes that narrative.  And as Dan Bongino points out, Monday’s NEW YORK TIMES ran a big story called “The Spy War:  How the CIA Secretly Helps Ukraine Fight Putin” that actually contained this sentence:  “The Ukrainians also helped U.S. officials pursue the Russian operatives who meddled in the 2016 U.S. presidential election between Donald J. Trump and Hillary Rodham Clinton.”

Here we go again.

Related to that, Margot Cleveland had a great column on February 15, after the news had broken that our own intelligence community originated the whole “Russian disinformation” theme and, long before the opening of “Crossfire Hurricane,” started the foreign intel surveillance of those 26 Trump associates.  She’s wondering if Hillary’s campaign was actively coordinating with our intel community to target Trump and, if so, when that effort might have started.  Fascinating reading…

One of Bongino’s sources on X, FoiaFan, had an intriguing comment about the Smirnov arrest:  “Smirnov was apparently spying for the United States against Russia, and they are burning him publicly by making detailed recitations of his spying.  Super-classified stuff that we NEVER get to see.  Why?”  Well, it seems they’re trying to turn the story around and show him working for Russia.

And speaking of Margot Cleveland, we’ve now come full circle because her latest column is about the arrest of Smirnov and the Democrats’ use of the recycled “Russian disinformation” garbage to exonerate Biden of Ukrainian bribery allegations before the election.

She outlines all the other evidence --- yes, it is mountainous --- that exists to prove the allegations against Biden and his family, saying it “comes from their own mouths, texts, emails and loyalists.”

“So it’s appalling,” she says, “to see the Biden corruption deniers’ manipulation of the Smirnov indictment to launch another Russian-collusion hoax, promising the American people that the entirety of the Biden corruption scandal and Hunter Biden’s legal problems is a Russian disinformation campaign designed to interfere in the 2024 presidential election.”

Cleveland also shows how odd remarks dropped into the indictment by Special Counsel David Weiss seem designed to further the made-up “Russian disinformation” story.  And she even cites the same NBC story we did, quoting some members of that group of 51 former intel officials who wrote the infamous “classic earmarks” letter about Hunter’s laptop, saying they feel “vindicated” by Smirnov’s arrest.

She notes that House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Jerry Nadler has now written to AG Merrick Garland and DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz asking for an investigation of former U.S. Attorney Scott Brady, who had vetted Smirnov’s FBI interview notes as part of his assignment from then-AG William Barr to screen information that came in pertaining to Ukraine.  Nadler also wants an inquiry into Barr.  Cleveland shows how, in this letter, Nadler distorts Brady’s own testimony to accuse HIM of lying about vetting Smirnov’s interview.

“THE FEDERALIST has reviewed the entire [Brady] transcript,” Cleveland writes, “and not only does it prove Nadler’s accusations are fraudulent, it confirms the idiocy of the idea that Smirnov was part of some Russian disinformation op to interfere in our elections.”

Incidentally, it was the vetting process done by Brady’s office at Barr’s request that first turned up Hunter’s connection to Burisma, as this was told to the FBI by a confidential human source (CHS).  Brady saw a passing reference to this in one FBI agent’s interview notes and requested that the FBI re-interview him to find out if it might be significant.  (Hoo boy, was it significant.)  The CHS was re-interviewed, and it was that interview we see immortalized in the “1023” at issue, which Brady testified later that he thought credible.  That CHS:  Alexander Smirnov, who is now being held without bail.

RELATED STORY:  Hunter Biden has a unique strategy for staying sober this year.

As he told AXIOS in a rare interview, he’s doing it for the good of the country.

In this case, he said, “I have something much bigger than even myself at stake.  We are in the middle of a fight for the future of democracy.”

He’s framed his struggle for sobriety as necessary to avoid putting his father in a bad light before the presidential election and inadvertently helping Trump get back in office.  Why, that would be terrible!  Just think --- if Hunter slipped and somehow the news got out, he might cost his father enough votes in a few swing states that even massive cheating with mail-in ballots couldn’t make up for it, and our democracy would be lost!

It occurs to us that if he happens to know who dropped off that baggie of cocaine at the White House, he might also want to tell THAT person how important sobriety is, for now.  The discovery of cocaine in the West Wing was not a good look for anyone there, including the Big Guy.  Please, please, for the sake of our democracy, keep all the drugs away from the White House, at least until after the election!

Matt Vespa at TOWNHALL spared no words about Hunter’s sense of self-importance, calling the AXIOS interview “one of the worst examples of malignant narcissism to ever exist in the political realm.”   

“This is a man who has been credibly accused of sex-trafficking women and who pimped himself out to the Chinese communists now believing that his ‘sobriety’ is one of the keys to saving American democracy,” Vespa said.  “...According to Hunter Biden, the Republic hinges on his ability to not end up back on the snow. You can't make this stuff up. It's too absurd.” 

But AXIOS presented this seriously, going on “to paint Hunter as a model for other addicts.”  Well, of course they did.  Hunter, like any recovering addict, has to put his faith in something larger than himself, which in this case is the desperate need to keep Democrats in power.  That’s the most important thing of all.

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