A new video shows how the Trump team may have sent campaign updates to Putin

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Putin’s top political opponent just released a video (embedded below with English captions) showing a corrupt secret meeting that may have been about America’s elections between the Kremlin’s longest-serving foreign policy official and the Russian oligarch to whom Trump’s indicted former campaign manager promised secret briefings to “get whole” in bombshell emails revealed last year by The AtlanticThis video purports to reveal the Trump campaign manager’s back channel to the Kremlin during the campaign.

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According to The Atlantic, on August 2nd, 2016 Paul Manafort had dinner with his former business partner Konstantin Klimnick – a Ukrainian intermediary with suspected Russian intelligence ties – for the Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska. The Atlantic noted last October that “there [was] no evidence that Deripaska knew about Manafort’s attempts to reach him.”

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Five days after Manafort’s meeting, his aluminum magnate frienemy met Kremlin lifer and foreign policy expert Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Sergei Prikhodko – along with multiple sex workers – on a yacht.

But a Belarusian escort whom Oleg Deripaska had hired was busy through the voyage, writing Instagram posts and documenting her travels in detail for a short book about shipboard life (about how to capture an oligarch) with some thinly veiled changed names, but accurate dates. Her Instagram contained a video of Deripaska and the Russian Deputy Prime Minister meeting and talking about American sanctions.

Here’s the excerpt from Navalny’s story illustrating the dates of Deripaska’s boat ride:

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The entire situation came to Alexei Navalny’s attention because the escort was part of a group of girls were sent to his offices by Putin’s allies for odd political reasons, and left a video talking about him, that led ultimately to her Instagram about and the shocking discovery of that escort’s  ties to Deripaska, and the fateful boat ride, and the book.

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Paul Manafort’s connection to the Russian aluminum magnate has evolved into one of the central mysteries of the Special Counsel’s Trump-Russia probe.

News reports late last year described how Deripaska’s minority partner in the aluminum business, Len Blavatnik, allegedly funneled millions of dollars to the GOP.

Earlier, the AP revealed that before Paul Manafort ran Trump’s campaign, he worked for aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska on a $60 million contract to help Putin starting in 2006. But it all went south for Manafort after the Euromaidan Revolution swept his pro-Putin client out of office, leading Putin to send troops into Ukraine and the current sanctions standoff.

That’s when Paul Manafort and his indicted co-conspirator Rick Gates disappeared with $18.9 million, causing the Russian oligarch to file suit in 2014, which he dropped during the election, and filed again this year.

At the time of the election in 2016, Manafort had 18.9 million reasons to “get whole” with Deripaska.

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This recent in-depth profile shows that the Republican lobbyist was slowly going broke – squeezing cash from his ill-gotten real estate empire – after his Ukrainian troublemaking went bust and all of what his daughters called “blood money” had run dry.

Navalny’s video is the strongest direct link suggesting collusion between the Republican campaign and the Kremlin in 2016 during the height of the presidential campaign that Paul Manafort was running for Donald Trump.

But we’ll probably have to wait until Paul Manafort’s federal criminal trial later this year for the rest of this story about the Republican operative and the Russian oligarch to emerge.

Watch the entire video by Alexei Navalny here:

Author’s Note: This video is worth 24 minutes of your time, watch it with subtitles on!

Grant Stern

Editor at Large

Grant Stern is a columnist for the Washington Press. He's also mortgage broker, writer, community activist and radio personality in Miami, Florida.

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