It is always interesting to see an avowed “religious” Republican get caught telling an easily disproved lie. Not interesting in a good way, but interesting in how they can clutch their Christian bona fides to their bosom in the commission of a lie and think no-one is going to notice their hypocrisy and violation of the Ninth Commandment. When Donald Trump’s pick for a running mate said he learned about Trump’s choice to run the NSA being a “foreign agent” for Turkish government when it made the news on Thursday last, he lied.
By now most people are aware that despite Mike Pence’s vice-presidential lie that he wasn’t aware of retired Lt. General Michael Flynn’s work on behalf of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, he knew on November 18 according to a letter from Representative Elijah Cummings (D-MD) informing him of the facts. Pence’s claim calls into question another statement he made about Flynn’s communications with the Russians; communications Pence said he was completely unaware of until it was revealed in the media. One thing about liars most people know is that liars are prone to lying about the same thing over and over again; like not knowing anything until it is reported in the news when they knew it as it was happening months earlier.
The rash of lies surrounding yet another Trump administration actor, in this case Mike Pence, extend beyond the White House and are being taken up by the Turkish “businessman” working on behalf of the Turkish government. The man who forked over about $530,000 to Flynn to be Turkey’s foreign agent in the Trump camp, Ekim Alptekin, fits perfectly with the Trump liars club and claimed that Flynn wasn’t doing anything untoward, and he certainly wasn’t doing anything on behalf of the Turkish government.
It is unclear if Alptekin is attempting to cover for Flynn or he just lies like the rest of Trump’s administration, but he denied that his work on behalf of the Turkish government is work on behalf of the Turkish government. It is why he said he disagreed with Flynn’s decision to register as a foreign agent with the Department of Justice.
Maybe in Turkey the definition of “government,” as well as “foreign agent,” is different than anywhere else in the world, but working as an agent of a foreign government to influence American policy is working as a foreign agent. Something that even Michael Flynn knew required him to register as Turkey’s foreign agent in America; even though it was a veritable “retroactive” registration.
Alptekin told the Associated Press (AP) on Friday that Flynn was not required to file as a “foreign agent” no matter what American law says.
“I disagree with the filing. It would be different if I was working for the government of Turkey, but I am not taking directions from anyone in the government.”
However, Mr. Alptekin is lying about working for the government of Turkey exactly like Mike Pence is lying about not knowing Flynn was a “foreign agent” for the Turkish government as far back as November 18, 2016; the date of Representative Elijah Cummings letter to Mike Pence as head of Trump’s transition team.
Alptekin is a member of a Turkey’s economic relations board that is run by an appointee of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. And, Flynn’s task for Alptekin, Turkish President Erdogan and on behalf of the Turkish government was to pressure the US government to extradite a Turkish cleric living in Pennsylvania, Fetullah Gulen.
It was the Turkish President Erdogan pressing for Mr. Gulen’s extradition back to Turkey because the president of the Turkish government, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, believes the cleric was involved in last year’s attempted coup, and thinks he is “fomenting dissent” against Erdogan inside Turkey.
Mr. Flynn, in working for the Turkish government, penned an op-ed for The Hill on November 8 claiming: “[Gulen] helmed a vast global network” that “has all the right markings to fit the description of a dangerous sleeper terror network. From Turkey’s point of view, Washington is harboring Turkey’s Osama bin Laden.” Flynn wrote the piece from the Turkish government, and President Erdogan’s “point of view” to earn the $530,000 it paid him as a foreign agent. (author bold)
The Obama Administration refused to extradite the cleric on behalf of the Turkish government because Barack Obama is not a Turkish “foreign agent.” And because the Turkish government or the Turkish president failed to provide any proof in the form of “necessary evidence” that President Obama required for extradition showing that the cleric had any involvement in the failed coup attempt.
It has come to the point that it is impossible to believe one word coming from the Trump administration. Yes it’s true that Trump lies at the same rate most humans draw breath, but so does Mike Pence, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, EPA Secretary Scott Pruitt, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, and Health and Human Services (HHS) secretary, Tom Price. The five members of Trump’s cabinet-level liars club all committed perjury by lying under oath before the U.S. Senate.
The real travesty is that because Republicans control all facets of the government, there is no hope that any of the Trump administration liars will ever be held accountable or prosecuted like the criminals they are. There is an old saying that a person is defined by the company they keep, and it is certainly true because now it’s apparent that Flynn’s paymaster, the one working for the Turkish government, is lying when he said neither he nor Flynn were working on behalf of the Turkish government. A fact that Mike Pence knew on November 18, 2016; a full three-and-a-half months before he claimed he had learned it late last week.