Monday's HOT MIC
TWEET OF THE WEEKEND:
We miss a few things when Hot Mic takes Saturday and Sunday off. Here's a nice reminder that not all of the young ones are leftist lunatics.
I knew I was going to like having Bolton take over this job:
But there’s one episode even Mueller’s former law enforcement comrades — and independent ethicists — acknowledge raises legitimate legal issues and a possible conflict of interest in his overseeing the Russia election probe.
In 2009, when Mueller ran the FBI, the bureau asked Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska to spend millions of his own dollars funding an FBI-supervised operation to rescue a retired FBI agent, Robert Levinson, captured in Iran while working for the CIA in 2007.
Yes, that’s the same Deripaska who has surfaced in Mueller’s current investigation and who was recently sanctioned by the Trump administration.
The Levinson mission is confirmed by more than a dozen participants inside and outside the FBI, including Deripaska, his lawyer, the Levinson family and a retired agent who supervised the case. Mueller was kept apprised of the operation, officials told me.
My safe bet here is that the vehemently anti-Trump "BUT RUSSIA!" crowd will suddenly lose all of those connect-the-dots skills they've been reaching to hone for the past year or so.
I usually like to end the week here with something from The Babylon Bee, so why not start a new off with them too?
Here's an interesting tweet from an adviser to minister of foreign affairs Mohammad Javad Zarif:
Why yes, yes it would be interesting.
The adviser's tweet appears to suggest that some Western officials partook in "pay-to-play" schemes by accepting money to support and ultimately sign the deal. The accusation makes perfect sense given that there was no legitimate reason whatsoever to support the horrible one-sided deal pieced together in 2015 by then-President Barack Hussein Obama.
As noted by Fox News panelist Charles Krauthammer at the time, "The most astonishing thing [about the deal] is that in return, they [Iran] are not closing a single nuclear facility. Their entire nuclear infrastructure is intact."
"They are going to have the entire infrastructure in place either for a breakout after the agreement expires or when they have enough sanctions relief and they want to cheat and to breakout on their own," he added.
The world got absolutely nothing in return for signing the deal, yet numerous officials across the Western world signed it anyway. Why?
Of course Western governments got something from the deal: the ability to say that the problem of Iranian nukes was solved and war was unnecessary. That was of paramount importance. Never mind that U.S. policy for two decades previously was to not negotiate with Iran until they stopped working on the bomb and then agree to lift sanctions only when they dismantled their nuclear infrastructure. The breathtaking way that policy was breached can be explained only by understanding that promoting the deal using the fiction that it brought "peace" between Iran and the West was the only way to sell it.