Flynn Was Paid By Russia for 2015 Trip

The Times has now published an article which covers similar ground to the one I noted below from the Post. But it adds this additional piece of information: “In addition, the Army has been investigating whether Mr. Flynn received money from the Russian government during a trip he took to Moscow in 2015, according to two defense officials.”

This sounds very bad. And it may be very bad. But there’s some important context here. Flynn has stated publicly that he was paid for his appearance at the RT banquet in Moscow in December 2015.

Here he discusses it in an August 2016 interview with The Washington Post’s Dana Priest …

PRIEST: Tell me about the RT [state-run Russian Television] relationship?

FLYNN: I was asked by my speaker’s bureau, LAI. I do public speaking. It was in Russia. It was a paid speaking opportunity. I get paid so much. The speaker’s bureau got paid so much, based on our contract.

PRIEST: Can you tell me how much you got for that?

FLYNN: No.

PRIEST: No? Because you don’t want to get your fees out there?

FLYNN: Yeah, I don’t.

PRIEST: What was the gig?

FLYNN: The gig was to do an interview with [RT correspondent] Sophie Shevardnadze. It was an interview in front of the forum, probably 200 people in the audience. My purpose there was I was asked to talk about radical Islam in the Middle East. They asked me to talk about what was going on in the situation unfolding in the Middle East. … The speaking agreement was done before Russian went into Syria, which was actually more interesting to me because … one of my discussions, I talked about the attacks in France … and the negative role that Iran was playing where I thought Russian could actually have a role. The statement that I made was actually: “Russia ought to get Iran to back out of the proxy wars they are involved in,” to include Syria, so we, the rest of the international community, could settle this situation down.

PRIEST: Have you appeared on RT regularly?

FLYNN: I appear on Al Jazeera, Skye New Arabia, RT. I don’t get paid a dime. I have no media contracts. … [I am interviewed] on CNN, Fox …

PRIEST: Why would you go on RT, they’re state run?

FLYNN: Well, what’s CNN?

PRIEST: Well, it’s not run by the state. You’re rolling your eyes.

FLYNN: Well, what’s MSNBC? I mean, come on … what’s Al Jazeera? What’s Sky News Arabia? I have been asked by multiple organizations to be a [paid] contributor but I don’t want to be.

The Times goes on to say this.

Such a payment might violate the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, which prohibits former military officers from receiving money from a foreign government without consent from Congress. The defense officials said there was no record that Mr. Flynn, a retired three-star Army general, filed the required paperwork for the trip.

Relevant point being, it’s no secret that Flynn was paid for this. Whether he should have done it, whether he filed the right paperwork, that’s another matter.

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