Former national security adviser Michael Flynn pled guilty Friday to two counts of lying to FBI agents.
Court filings show one count accuses Flynn of wrongly claiming "on or about December 22nd 2016" that he "did not ask the Russian Ambassador to delay the vote on or defeat a pending United Nations Security Council resolution and that the Russian Ambassador subsequently never described to Flynn Russia's response to his request."
That's very interesting.
Because on Dec. 23, 2016, the U.N. vote went ahead. In the absence of a U.S. veto, Israel was condemned for its settlement construction in the West Bank. Yet that's just the mid-point of the story. Four days after the resolution passed, top Russian diplomats told the Israeli press that they had attempted to delay the U.N. vote. Was this as a response to Flynn's petitioning?
And if true, it also seems like the Russians wanted to keep their anti-vote agenda secret. After all, Russia ended up voting in favor of the resolution.
But here's the most interesting element.
As I explained in early January, Israel effectively admitted that it had spied on the Obama administration and had found out that the U.S. was responsible for advancing the resolution. Israel also claimed that it would share its "sensitive" and "ironclad" information with the then-incoming Trump administration.
Flynn's plea thus raises a question: Was he given this information prior to the vote and thus prior to entering office? And did that motivate him to ask the Russian ambassador not to proceed with the vote?
Again, it seems very possible. After all, only Israel stood to benefit from Flynn's request.
If nothing else, this story suggests a classic mix of various espionage efforts! Oh, and it also raises questions as to why Flynn wasn't charged with violating the Logan Act — which bans private citizens from undercutting U.S. government policy.