In a stark illustration of the sheer idiocy of the regime, the Tiny Tyrant is having an overwrought tantrum over Russia publishing photos of the “secret” meeting yesterday, in which uStates press was barred, but Russian press was allowed. There was a cameraman there. With a camera. What did they think they were going to do with the photos? Paste them in their fan book? The incoherent scream tumbling from the white house is “they tricked us!” I have news you for ya, fellas. If that’s tricking you, you deserve it, with bells on.
On Wednesday, President Trump met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak at the White House. Now the administration is “furious” that TASS, the Russian state-owned news agency, has published photos of the meeting.
There’s no shortage of theatrics leading up to the White House’s reactions.
First, the meeting was only supposed to be with Lavrov. Only Lavrov was scheduled to be in attendance, and only Lavrov was mentioned in the official White House readout of the meeting. Thus, it’s only because of the Russian agency’s photos that the public knows Kislyak was also present.
The White House shrugged off Kislyak’s presence, noting there’s nothing suspicious about meeting with an ambassador in the Oval Office.
Official pushed back on critics who slammed Kislyak in Oval: “It is ridiculous to say that an ambassador can’t meet with the president.." https://t.co/HWgoK9vVUE
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) May 11, 2017
Jim Acosta: Official pushed back on critics who slammed Kislyak in Oval: “It is ridiculous to say that an ambassador can’t meet with the president…”
But this ignores a significant amount of context. The meeting took place the morning after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, who was investigating alleged ties between the Trump campaign and Russia. That firing came at the recommendation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who had supposedly recused himself from the investigation because he didn’t disclose meetings he had with Kislyak while he was serving as a Trump campaign surrogate.
With little believable explanation available for why Trump fired Comey except for his role the Russian investigation, it’s particularly conspicuous that Kislyak would then be in the Oval the very next day. Moreover, an ambassador meeting with the President is far more suspicious when the White House seems to intentionally try to hide it. And now the administration is “furious” that TASS published photos that are the only way anyone even knows Kislyak was present for the meeting.
A second aspect of the theatrics is the fact that when journalists were eventually invited into the Oval, neither Lavrov nor Kislyak were present. Instead, Trump was unexpectedly meeting with former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.
The optics of this are rather incredible. Many lawmakers and pundits had spent much of the previous 24 hours comparing Trump’s firing of Comey to President Richard Nixon’s “Saturday Night Massacre,” when he fired an attorney general and a deputy attorney general because they wouldn’t remove the special prosecutor investigating the Watergate scandal. Kissinger was not implicated in Watergate, but it was still rather surprising Trump would have a surprise meeting with the man who served as Nixon’s Secretary of State and National Security Adviser. They discussed “Russia and various other matters,” according to the pool report.
The rest of this most interesting story of incompetent stealth and tantrums is at Think Progress.