More than an easy read, it’s an astounding spy story…even if the spy/mark is so stupid, I can’t even…
For a while now, I’ve recognized how dimwitted Trump is. When I read the quotes from taped sessions with him…and here I am again, without the words to describe his intellectual vacuity.
For any of you who’ve been paying close attention to the Mar-a-Lago events and who, like me, thought you had a pretty good grasp of what happened, well, we didn’t. The indictment has incidents, texts, photographs and what are clearly facts related in grand jury testimony from people who didn’t want to be indicted and/or lose their licenses to practice law.
The photographs! One of them shows the infamous storage room, where Trump’s boxes were piled up high; after the pile semi-collapsed, a bunch of boxes fell off and the contents — some of them top secret documents — were spilled over the floor. (One of the employees was distressed by the spill, texting something like, “oh no oh no!”)
The unindicted witnesses, although identified only as, say, Employee 1, or Trump lawyer 1, can be guessed at with some confidence. And they spilled quite a lot of factual information. (One such person, neither an indictee or witness, must be Ivanka Trump — ID’d as family member, but then referred to as “she” — who, when she hears that a number of Trump’s boxes will be secreted on the plane the family will be taking to New York/Bedminster, objects, saying there is no room for boxes! The plane will be filled with their luggage! I read this and laughed at Ivanka’s priorities: her wardrobe, presumably.)
One employee did not provide honest testimony and he, Walt Nauta, is Trump’s co-defendant on this indictment. When you read some of his testimony, you’ll just shake your head at how willing he was, and maybe how ignorant of the law, to lie for the utterly dreadful Trump.
Since thirty-one (I think) charges are for individual classified documents, I read every summary. The DOJ helpfully provided a description of each classified designation (top secret, secret and confidential), a list of all our relevant intelligence agencies and an expansion of the partial acronyms with which the secret documents were labeled (for instance, NOFORN, which means “not releasable to foreign nationals).”
Regarding our national secrets, I think of myself as fairly unshockable. I assume intelligence agencies around the world do what they can to read other nations’ intelligence. But I found myself unpleasantly startled at the information these documents contained, which the DOJ summarizes in terse sentences. Occasional references to [foreign nation] can be guessed at. Several of the documents indicated they contained our country’s internal preparations for defense; others contain secrets of other countries which could only have been obtained through life-risking agents and foreign informants.
Aside from Trump’s blatant display of what he said was a military map and plan for attacking another country (I’m guessing it’s Iran) to a couple of people who shouldn’t have had access to anything, the indictment does not tell us about the “dissemination” (the word being used now by lawyers on MSNBC) of those top secret documents.
Which means a lot of people will now go nuts trying to figure out whether, oh, say, Saudi Arabia, an enemy of Iran, bought at least copies of those documents from Trump.
Oh read it. Never mind my musings. Read it and muse on your own.
P.S. For all you punishment demons, I took out my little calculator, turned to the helpful Penalty Sheet at the end of the indictment and added up all the years Trump would be sentenced to if he were convicted on all counts (38) and if a really mean judge made the sentences consecutive, not concurrent: 100 years.
Update on Saturday, June 10: Oops (re my calculations of Trump’s potential prison time). I think I failed to account for potential sentences stated for each of the stolen documents. A lawyer on Twitter posted the correct potential sentence as something like 480 years.