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The New Book That Offers New Information On The Trump-Russia Connection Story
November 16, 2017

Dust jacket to the newly published book by reporter Luke Harding

Reporter and best-selling author Luke Harding. Photo courtesy The Guardian. CLICK TO ENLARGE
Chronicle staff

(NATIONAL) -- Luke Harding is an internationally known award winning journalist and best selling author who has more than a bit of "street cred" when it comes to knowing about what goes on in Russia and why.

One of the things he is intimately familiar with is how the Russian intelligence apparatus sets up visiting politicians, businessmen, dignitaries and others to be compromised so they can be blackmailed later into doing the Russian government's bidding.

Harding is a long time reporter for the British newspaper The Guardian. Between 2007 and 2011 he was the Guardian's Moscow bureau chief. In February 2011 the Kremlin deported him from that country in the first case of its kind since the Cold War.

Harding wrote some stories published in The Guardian that evidently displeased Russian President Vladimir Putin. Harding found out first hand how the Kremlin does things.

Here is what Harding told Don Lemmon of CNN last night during an appearance on the news network to talk about his new book:

"People from the FSB (a "new Russia" state security agency that replaced the old KGB) broke into my apartment and the British embassy told us, 'Sorry you've got bugs, there's video...' so I said what about my bedroom, they said yeah there's video in the bedroom too. And so (the thought that) the FSB would want to video Donald Trump when he visited Moscow during 2013 is a no-brainer, of course they would it's what they do. It's what the KGB did. So it's really not a question about their methods it's a question about how Trump would or wouldn't have behaved when he was in Russia."

And therein rests the core of Harding's new book. It's being published today and released in ten countries by Penguin Random House in the U.S. It's called, "Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win."

Harding's book is coming out just as Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged collusion between members and associates of Trump's Presidential campaign has started issuing its first indictments.

Publisher's Weekly notes, "The publisher claims the book has fresh information on Russian players as well as Americans such as Michael Flynn and Paul Manafort, who Harding says he met in 2008 in Ukraine. Indeed, Harding also claims to have met with Christopher Steele, the former MI6 British intelligence officer behind the infamous dossier on Donald Trump’s tainted Russian connections, in a London pub in December 2016 before the dossier’s existence was revealed."

"Harding says, “The key to the Trump-Russia story is being able to follow the money, see what deals were made when and by whom, and what relationships were being cultivated and why.”

Amazon says the book is a, "Gripping, alarming exposé about the biggest political scandal of the modern era, in which Harding reveals the true nature of Trump’s decades-long relationship with Moscow."

"Drawing on exclusive new material, Harding tells the story of former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele and his dossier. Collusion is an astonishing tale of offshore money, sketchy real-estate deals, a Miss Universe Pageant, mobsters, money laundering, hacking and Russian espionage. It includes the latest indictments by Robert Mueller, the special prosecutor investigating a scandal now engulfing the Trump administration."

A big question on many minds about this book is will it, "Deliver the long sought after conclusive confirmation of collusion?" as the Huffington Post posed the question.

That same HP report notes that "The secrecy surrounding the production of Harding’s book suggests he has explosive new evidence: “The book itself was kept secret until now, edited offline, with tight security among the publishing players, and all communications about the project were conducted in encrypted format.”

Last year Luke Harding interviewed Christopher Steele, who's the ex-MI6 officer who wrote the controversial “Steele Dossier,” which is reportedly filled with allegations, salacious and other wise, about Donald Trump.

On CNN last night Harding said he found Steele credible and a professional in that line of work.

When asked by Don Lemmon if he, Harding, believes the Russians have compromising information about President Trump he said:

"Yeah. I mean, Vladimir Putin is a former KGB spy. They will have a file (on Trump) so big you can't fit it into your studio going back to 1987 when Donald Trump first visited Moscow at the invitation of the Soviet government (and) probably even before that when he married a woman from communist Czechoslovakia, so there would be an enormous file. What they seek to do is cultivate people and exploit them for their own purposes."

That 1987 date that Harding mentioned may be of interest to those watching the Trump-Russia story unfold.

Many Americans have wondered why Trump, at every turn, has appeared to be a constant apologist for Putin and the Russian government while angrily castigating and criticizing many of his fellow Americans -- everyone from Black Lives Matter and NFL protesters to war hero and conservative Republican John McCain to his own Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

One could argue that if the Russians do indeed have compromising material on Donald Trump, it may have nothing to do with Trump's 2013 visit to Moscow.

It could be something or some "things" dating back to that 1987 visit or that visit and a combination of other material gathered about Trump and possibly some of his closest associates, aids and advisors in the years since.

Stay tuned. This one is far from over.



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