While hysteria raged about possible Russian “interference” in the 2016 US election, British intelligence officials were secretly playing a “key role” in helping instigate investigations into Donald Trump, secret texts have shown.
“Turns out it was Britain that was the foreign country interfering in American affairs,” former MP George Galloway told RT, speaking about the new revelations published by the Guardian about early British involvement in the ‘Russiagate’ investigation.
The Guardian reported on texts between former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe and Jeremy Fleming, his then counterpart at MI5, who now heads GCHQ. The two men met in 2016 to discuss “our strange situation” – an apparent reference to Russia’s alleged interference in US domestic politics.
British intelligence “appears to have played a key role in the early stages,” the report said.
Galloway said the revelation was not surprising because people “already knew” that British intelligence had played a part in the Russia-related investigations in the US. He recalled that it was former British spy Christopher Steele who drew up the now-infamous Steele dossier, which made multiple unverifiable and salacious claims about Trump and has since been largely discredited. Britain is “up to its neck in the whole Russiagate affair,” he said.
The texts also reveal that the Brexit vote was viewed by some in the FBI as something that had been influenced by Russia.
Asked what the UK stood to gain by trying to implicate Russia in a US election scandal at a time when then-foreign secretary Boris Johnson was dismissing baseless claims of Russian interference in the Brexit campaign, Galloway noted that Johnson’s comments on Russia have appeared to strangely sway between friendly and antagonistic.
Johnson is like “a sofa that bears the impression of the last person to sit upon him,” the former MP quipped. What happens next will depend on who is leading the tango, “the orange man in Washington or the blonde mop-head in London.”
In June 2016, the FBI opened a covert investigation codenamed ‘Crossfire Hurricane’ into Trump’s now disproven collusion with Moscow, which was later taken over by special counsel Robert Mueller.
Ultimately, the two-year-long probe that followed came up short, producing no evidence to prove a conspiracy or collusion between Trump campaign officials and Russia.