And the hits just keep on coming.
Breaking news from a declassified letter dated yesterday, which was made public by Sen. Lindsey Graham’s office today.
Christopher Steele’s “Primary sub-source” was a person named Igor Danchenko.
According to the letter, between 2009 and 2011, the FBI had an open counterintelligence/espionage investigation with Danchenko as the target.
Specifically, the FBI received reporting indicating a research fellow for an influential foreign policy advisor in the Obama administration was at a work-related event in late 2008 with a coworker when they were approached by another employee of the think tank (DANCHENKO). The employee [DANCHENKO] reportedly indicated that if the two individuals at the table “did get a job in the government and had access to classified information” and wanted “to make a little extra money,” the employee [DANCHEKO] knew some people to whom they could speak. According to the research fellow, there was no pretext to the conversation; the employee [DANCHENKO] had not been invited to the table; and the employee [DANCHENKO] began the exchange by asking if the research fellow “would follow [his/her principal] anywhere.” When later interviewed by the FBI, the research fellow confirmed the report and stated that while he/she could not be certain, he/she did not believe the employee [DANCHENKO] was attempting to gain access to the foreign policy advisor through the research fellow’s access. When interviewed by the FBI, the coworker seated with the research fellow did not recall a specific pitch for classified information, however, the coworker did express suspicion of the employee [DANCHENKO] and had questioned the possibility that the employee [DANCHENKO] might actually be a Russian spy.
In December 2016, the FBI was able to identify Steele’s primary sub-source as Danchenko — and the Crossfire Hurricane team learned of the 2008 incident and the investigation that followed.
Remember that Danchenko worked for the Brookings Institution off and on while in the United States.
After conducting a lengthy inquiry into Danchenko, in July 2010 the FBI sought authorization to conduct FISA electronic surveillance of Danchenko. While that application was in the process of being prepared, the investigators learned that Danchenko had left the US and returned to Russia when his visa was not renewed. The request for FISA surveillance was withdrawn. The counterintelligence investigation on Danchenko was closed in 2011, with a note that it would be reopened if he returned to the United States.
After the FBI learned of the Primary Sub-Source’s identity, he was interviewed over the course of three days in January 2017 by the FBI. This interview produced the 57-page “Electronic Communication” which was declassified and made public on July 17, 2020.
Nowhere in the 57 pages is it shown that the Crossfire Hurricane investigators who questioned Danchenko ever asked him about his actions in 2008 which led him to be classified by the FBI as a “threat to national security.”
Bottom line — the FBI investigators running Crossfire Hurricane were happy to have the assistance of a suspected Russian Intelligence Asset to assist the FBI in their efforts to drive Donald Trump from office.
About that “collusion” narrative…