Tuesday , June 12, 2018 - 12:00 AM
Dear Mr. Robert Mueller: I am neither a Democrat nor a Republican. I am writing as a concerned American to beg you to reveal whether there is any end in sight for your Russia-Trump collusion investigation.
We all want to know the truth behind whether President Trump or any of his associates colluded with the Russians to sway the 2016 election. We'd also like to know whether the FBI first started investigating Trump months before the election based on a dirty-tricks tip from Democrats.
I try to learn as much as I can about all this, Mr. Mueller, but there are so many contradictory reports out there -- on TV, in various newspapers and magazines -- that I don't know what to believe! Politicians often just parrot their party line about who is suspect, and those of us who just want to know the truth remain stumped. Families have splintered after angry political arguments, and good friends have stopped talking to each other.
Could you see your way clear to answer at least some of the many questions we have about our election system, our political parties and the two candidates who squared off for the White House? If we all had a better grasp on the facts, we might start to find some common ground.
I just read that your investigation has cost taxpayers nearly $17 million so far. You know what? That's OK. Spend as much money as you need, but please realize that the longer your leak-prone investigation goes on, the more the media (and those aggravating talking heads on TV!) will spew their speculations and the deeper our national schism will become.
In other words, sir, you've been at it for more than a year now. Could you start to wrap it up for the country's peace of mind?
It is hard for even the most well-informed Americans to keep it all straight as to who said what to whom when and what each of the players was doing on the sidelines: Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, George Papadopoulos and Carter Page, Jared Kushner and Mike Flynn, Donald Trump Jr. and Michael Cohen, to name a few. If any of them did, in fact, get into bed with the Russians to influence the outcome of our election, I hope you file espionage charges. But I would think if you'd discovered that kind of proof, it would have already leaked. I'm guessing your biggest challenge will be proving a collusion link to President Trump himself.
Of course, he doesn't do a lot to illuminate us with all his interminable tweets. I'm not sure how you restrain yourself each time the president calls your investigation a "witch hunt." And, Mr. Mueller, I'm sure, like us, you question some of the president's public statements, like the various reasons he gave for firing FBI Director James Comey, who started the collusion probe. Was he dismissed because, as the president has said, a) he mishandled the Clinton email server investigation, b) he "wasn't doing a good job" or c) "this Russia thing" is "a made-up story"?
You, sir, have more tools to get to the truth than we do. Can you imagine how befuddled we citizens are?
One of the things that bothers me most is just how the FBI came to start its collusion investigation back in July 2016, months before the election. I've read that it was sparked by a confidential informant alerting the bureau to possible Russian-Trump team shenanigans.
Was it the British former MI6 agent Christopher Steele, who authored that notorious and Democrat-financed dossier on Trump? Was it the Australian diplomat who had drinks with low-level Trump team member Papadopoulos and heard him brag about the Russians having Hillary Clinton's emails?
If it was the latter, that seems a pretty thin excuse for starting a full-blown FBI investigation. If it was the former, then I smell a partisan political rat at the crux of this.
But, Mr. Mueller, I read the informant might have been this fellow named Stefan Halper, an American former professor based in London. The Hill reports Halper approached at least three Trump campaign officials way before the official FBI investigation started and snooped around for Russia-Trump connections. Apparently, Halper had worked for the U.S. government in the past, earning more than $1 million from Pentagon contracts since 2012. Did President Obama or the FBI send Halper into the Trump campaign? And if so, why?
Mr. Mueller, can't you at least let us know how this whole ugly mess started so we can get a clearer picture of what's at play here? And, in a perfect world, I'd like to know whether you're also investigating members of the FBI, the Democratic National Committee or the Obama administration.
In closing, may I say, Mr. Mueller, we have all become so weary of the steady drumbeat of unconfirmed news about your work. Please, can you hit the accelerator and hurry it up?
To find out more about Diane Dimond, visit her website at www.dianedimond.com. Her latest book, "Thinking Outside the Crime and Justice Box," is now available.
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