Uranium One Means Mueller Must Recuse Himself from Russia Probe
At the end of their lengthy editorial regarding the new Uranium One revelations -- "Team Obama's stunning coverup of Russian crimes" -- the New York Post editorial board writes:
Until September 2013, the FBI director was Robert Mueller — who’s now the special counsel probing Russian meddling in the 2016 election. It’s hard to see how he can be trusted in that job unless he explains what he knew about this Obama-era cover-up.
I'll go the Post one better. Virtually whatever Mueller has to say about his involvement or non-involvement in this metastasizing scandal, he must recuse himself immediately for the most obvious reasons of propriety and appearance. Frankly, it's outrageous that he, Rod Rosenstein, or anyone who even touched the Uranium One investigation now be involved with the current probe -- unless the real name of the FBI is actually the NKVD. This is not how a democracy is supposed to work, even remotely. Forget transparency -- this was deliberate occlusion.
The collusion Trump & Co have been accused of is chickenfeed compared to twenty percent of U.S. uranium ending up in Putin's hands under the aegis of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Eric Holder, the latter two members of CFIUS (the inter-agency committee that reviews the transfer of U.S. companies to foreign entities and was then chaired by Timothy Geithner). We have heard disturbing allegations of this for some time, via "Clinton Cash" and even from the New York Times, but the new disclosure that a 2009 FBI investigation of this possible nuclear deal uncovered kickbacks, money laundering, and bribes from the Russian company involved (Rosatom) and yet it still was given the go-ahead by the Obama administration is -- I can think of no better word -- appalling. How could it have come to pass that this occurred? Why are we supposed to believe anyone now?
On Wednesday, Senator Grassley asked Attorney General Jeff Sessions: “What are you doing to find out how the Russian takeover of the American uranium was allowed to occur despite criminal conduct by the Russia company that the Obama administration approved the purchase?"
Evidently, not much. At least so far. In fact Sessions said that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who led this long-hidden investigation, should "investigate himself."
No, Jeff. You may have properly recused yourself from the Russian investigation, despite Trump's criticism, but this one is your job. You run the Department of Justice and therefore the FBI. Something is rotten as much as it ever was in Denmark. Indeed it's worse, since nuclear weapons were not even dreamed of in Hamlet's time. So don't be like Hamlet. Act now.
For starters, Mueller must step down. We cannot have an investigation of this magnitude that half the country will completely disrespect -- and for increasingly good reason. History will mock it, also for good reason. On top of that, with our country as split as it is, the results could be catastrophic.
Equally important, the reputation of the FBI must be resuscitated. Speaking entirely as a private citizen, I do no trust the FBI anymore. To be honest, it scares me. And I am certain I am not alone. It feels like an often-biased organization so bent on self-preservation that it hides evidence and lets the powerful off the hook. That's the royal road to totalitarianism. No, it's not the NKVD yet. No one that I know of is being hauled off in the middle of the night. But very few of us know what it is really up to, how it makes its frequently dubious decisions, or whether it is working for the good of the citizenry at all. Almost everything we learn of its investigations is so heavily redacted, no one but one of the myriad leakers seems to know what it means -- and they're usually lying. This, as they say, will not end well.
People can dismiss my view by claiming I am a right-wing ideologue, but the problem transcends administrations, as have FBI directors. Something is wrong with the system. No one seems to be watching the watchers, from the FBI to the NSA. Other than Senator Grassley, will anyone have the guts to save us?
Roger L. Simon is an award-winning novelist, Academy Award-nominated screenwriter and co-founder of PJ Media. His latest book is I Know Best: How Moral Narcissism Is Destroying Our Republic, If It Hasn't Already. Follow him on Twitter @rogerlsimon.