- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s exhaustive report on Russian election interference marginalizes its most important finding: There was no Trump-Moscow conspiracy.

“The Mueller report continued a pattern evident in the Mueller indictments,” said Jack Langer, spokesman for Rep. Devin Nunes, California Republican. “Pack the documents with vague insinuations of collusion while downplaying the actual findings that there was no collusion.”

A Washington Times analysis of a redacted version of the Mueller report shows that, among its scores of bolded headlines in the table of contents, none refers to the special counsel’s paramount conclusion. Also, in the 200-page section devoted to Russia-Trump there is no “conclusion” section.

The first words that address Mr. Mueller’s No. 1 assignment — to determine whether there was a Trump-Russia election interference conspiracy — appear in the report’s introduction on page 2, buried as the final third of a 63-word sentence.

It reads: “Although the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts, the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”

Mr. Mueller repeats that finding, though not labeled as such, in a section that explains how the word “coordination” is used in federal law.

SEE ALSO: Mueller’s statement fuels impeachment push on Capitol Hill

The report reads: “We applied the term coordination in that sense when stating in the report that the investigation did not establish that the Trump Campaign coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”

The next reference comes on page 9, as the final sentence of a paragraph describing decisions on what was and wasn’t a crime: “Further, the evidence was not sufficient to charge that any member of the Trump Campaign conspired with representatives of the Russian government to interfere in the 2016 election.”

Near the report’s end, the No. 1 finding is stated in the last sentence of a paragraph: “In sum, the investigation established multiple links between Trump Campaign officials and individuals tied to the Russian government. Those links included Russian offers of assistance to the Campaign. In some instances, the Campaign was receptive to the offer, while in other instances the Campaign officials shied away. Ultimately, the investigation did not establish that the Campaign coordinated or conspired with the Russian government in its election-interference activities.”

The report’ table of contents contains about 150 headlines and subheads for different subjects. None has a headline for “no conspiracy.”

But there are headlines that seem inconsequential, like the one dealing with campaign national security director J.D. Gordon and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. It says, “Ambassador Kislyak Invites J.D. Gordon to Breakfast at the Ambassador’s Residence.” The headline takes a reader to a single paragraph that states that Mr. Gordon didn’t attend.

Trump supporters have criticized Mr. Mueller’s cast of largely Democratic prosecutors. That criticism has carried over to how the prosecutors wrote the final 448-page final report. They say people were never accused of conspiracy, yet the verbiage implies they did something wrong.

“The Mueller report is shot through with omissions and innuendo, rendering it a purely partisan product,” Michael Caputo, a Republican operative and Trump campaign adviser, told The Washington Times.

The report tells of how a Russian based in Florida telephoned Mr. Caputo to offer dirt on Hillary Clinton. But the report doesn’t say that the person, Henry Oknyansky (aka Henry Greenberg) had been an FBI informant for 17 years, according to Mr. Caputo’s subsequent research.

Mr. Caputo set up a meeting with Mr. Oknyansky and his longtime friend and Trump associate, Roger Stone. Nothing came of the meeting, which wasn’t connected to Russian election interference, the Mueller report said.

Mr. Oknyansky told the special counsel that Mr. Caputo attended the meeting.

Mr. Caputo told The Times that the Mueller team knew he was in New York at the time. But they didn’t put that in the report, leaving open the implication that Mr. Oknyansky was correct and Mr. Caputo was wrong.

“These glaring omissions were intended to create false doubt in the readers’ minds,” Mr. Caputo said. “And if they did this to a marginal witness like me, imagine the omissions and innuendo they crafted for central targets of their hoax.”

Mr. Nunes, the senior Republican on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, asserts that Mr. Mueller muddled the resume of European professor Joseph Mifsud, a mysterious and pivotal player.

Mr. Mifsud is the London contact who told Trump volunteer George Papadopoulos in April 2016 that he heard that Moscow owned “thousands” of Mrs. Clinton’s emails. This conversation eventually led to the FBI opening a probe into the Trump campaign.

Papadopoulos believes Mr. Mifsud was planted by Western intelligence, just like two spies the FBI separately assigned to try to entrap him.

The Mueller report only mentions Mr. Mifsud’s Russian connections, not his extensive Western ties.

Mr. Nunes earlier this month sent a letter to three federal agencies demanding they turn over all documents on Mr. Mifsud.

“If he is in fact a Russian agent, it would be one of the biggest intelligence scandals for not only the United States, but also our allies like the Italians and the Brits and others,” Mr. Nunes told Fox News’ Sean Hannity. “Because if Mifsud is a Russian agent, he would know all kinds of our intelligence agents throughout the globe.”

Mr. Mueller’s office has declined to respond to criticism, saying the report speaks for itself.

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