“We’ve met the enemy,” Walt Kelly’s Pogo once said, ” and it is us.” Actually that epigram came from a poster exhibited at the first Earth Day celebration in 1970. It meant that we are killing our planet and therefore ourselves. It’s recalled best through the Pogo comic panel and has become a touchstone of American self-destructiveness.
The George Papadopoulos drunken confession must be added now to Richard Nixon’s tape system and Bill Clinton’s leaky faucet as examples of political self-destruction. It turns out that Papadopoulos was the one who squealed to the FBI on the Trump-Russia connection. Only he didn’t know it.
Papadopoulos first was seen clawing his way out of the primordial ooze to become senior foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign. He was largely overlooked then, rating only a passing reference as one of a handful of geniuses working for the radioactive candidate.
The next sighting of Papadopoulos occurred in October 2017. Special Prosecutor Mueller announced the Manafort and Rick Gates indictments in connection with the Russia probe, but the wily former FBI Chief buried the lede. His team also filed a one-count guilty plea by Papadopoulos for lying to the FBI. It was largely obscured by the feeding frenzy over Manafort’s indictment. The White House immediately disavowed any knowledge. Sarah Huckabee Sanders diminished Papadopoulos’ significance, calling him an unpaid volunteer and describing his activities as “unofficial.”
The indictment elaborated that Papadopoulos was working through a professor in London to make contact with a “Russian national” who had dirt on Clinton. Papadopoulos concealed these facts when questioned by the FBI, earning him the false statement conviction. Papadopoulos’ new-found celebrity caused the press to re-examine campaign materials. They found the photo above, showing Papadopoulos as one point of a triangle formed with Russia Recuse-nik Jeff Sessions and Trump as the other two. The unpaid volunteer possessed of the Russian dirt was hanging with the campaign heavies. There is no audio to go with the picture but it’s safe to assume that they were not discussing Micronesian trade policy.
Today, the significance of Papadopoulos’ London jaunt became clear. During his March sojourn an ebullient Papadopoulos also met with an Australian diplomat. Over the course of an evening of inebriation, he actually was a volunteer, coughing up that the Russians had the goods on Hillary. The man from Oz filed away this information until July, when he heard about the Russian dump of Clinton and DNC email. He reported his conversation to Australian intelligence. They in turn reported it to their American counterparts. Ironically, the Australian Prime Minister was one of the first Heads of State to be bashed by Trump after the election.
Upon receiving the news the FBI launched its investigation into Russian involvement, one that so far has brought down Manafort, Gates and General Michael Flynn, along with Papadopoulos. Trump has continuously called the Russia investigation a hoax. Every picture tells a story, though, and this one has Lyin’ Don and the little volunteer making serious face time.
Today’s bombshell puts the guilty plea into perspective. Papadopoulos was the first domino to fall because he is the taproot of the investigation. The Trump campaign itself spilled the beans. Not only was the Russia issue for real, but the FBI got it from the horse’s mouth. For work this good, Papadopoulos deserved to be on someone’s payroll.
I expected another indictment before the New Year but instead we got this leak about the Australian connection The information connects the dots between the London meeting and the one two months later that took place in Trump Tower. The pieces are beginning to fall into place, and a complete story is beginning to emerge. The future ex-President predicted that the Russia investigation would be over by the end of the year. This is probably not what he meant.