Michael Flynn Promised Ex-Partner That Russia Sanctions Would Be 'Ripped Up'

During Trump's Inauguration Speech, Flynn Was Doing Private Russia-Related Business on His Phone, Whistleblower

President Trump's first national security advisor, Michael T. Flynn, texted a former business associate on Inauguration Day that Obama-era sanctions against Russia would be "ripped up" and that a lucrative proposal to build nuclear reactors with Russian partners in the Middle East was "good to go", a witness has told Congress.

That's the account a whistleblower told Rep. Elijah Cummings, the ranking Democrat on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, which has been investigating Flynn's role in the project.

The project in question - promoted by a group of former senior USA military officers, and often described as a "Marshall Plan" of sorts - would involve USA companies working with Russian companies to build and operate nuclear plants in the Middle East, and export spent fuel from those plants.

In the letter to Rep. Trey Gowdy, the panel's GOP chairman, Cummings demanded that Gowdy subpoena documents on the nuclear power plan from the White House, Flynn, Copson, their partners and associates, Reuters reported.

"These grave allegations compel a full, credible and bipartisan congressional investigation", Cummings wrote, according to the New York Times.

Neither Gowdy nor Flynn's attorney, Robert Kelner, responded immediately to a request for comment. "This is going to make for a lot of very wealthy people", Cummings's letter quotes him as saying.

Minutes into Trump's inauguration speech, Flynn also texted the ex-partner, who wanted to work with Russian Federation to build nuclear reactors across the Middle East, that the plan, threatened by Obama's sanctions, was "good to go".

Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general and former high-ranking intelligence officer, pleaded guilty last week to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his discussions with the then-Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak, about the sanctions that day after they were imposed.

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One of President Donald Trump's former aides texted an associate that USA sanctions against Russian Federation would be "ripped up", a lawmaker says.

"This is the best day of my life", Copson told the whistleblower as he described the message from Flynn, Cummings said.

The ACU plan involved some two dozen nuclear power plants around the Middle East, to be developed jointly by the United States and Russian Federation.

With the clearance of Mueller's office, Cummings writes that he's now making the whistleblower's story public. And one of the companies involved in the project covered his travel expenses and wrote him a check for $25,000 for the trip, though it's not clear if Flynn cashed the check.

The Wall Street Journal's previous reporting said Flynn had facilitated a draft memo with the National Security Council staff that would support the project.

Cummings said the whistleblower, whom he did not identify in the letter, "fears retaliation", but would speak with Gowdy if he agrees to protect the whistleblower's identity.

Cummings has argued that the Flynn plea deal should alleviate that concern.

Mr Flynn was a consultant to the firm for 14 months from 2015-16, according to amended financial disclosure forms he filed in August this year.

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