Barack Obama claimed in a “leaked” phone call that the “rule of law is at risk” because of the “unprecedented” move by the Justice Department to drop charges against Michael Flynn. However, Obama pardoned James E. Cartwright, a retired Marine Corps general and former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff who pleaded guilty to lying to the F.B.I. about his discussions with reporters about Iran’s nuclear program, saving him from a possible prison sentence.
Michael Flynn was the victim of a perjury trap set up by officials in the FBI and was coerced into pleading guilty to lying to FBI officials.
In the “leaked” audio former President Barack Obama said:
“The news over the last 24 hours I think has been somewhat downplayed — about the Justice Department dropping charges against Michael Flynn,” Obama said. “And the fact that there is no precedent that anybody can find for someone who has been charged with perjury just getting off scot-free. That’s the kind of stuff where you begin to get worried that basic — not just institutional norms — but our basic understanding of rule of law is at risk. And when you start moving in those directions, it can accelerate pretty quickly as we’ve seen in other places.”
However, if we fire up the old-time machine and go back to 2017 when Barack Obama was just leaving office, we find a reminder that the former President just days before leaving pardoned retired Marine Corps general James E. Cartwright, who pleaded guilty to charges of lying to the FBI.
Marine Corps General James E. Cartwright served as vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Obama, and was “a key member of Barack Obama’s national security team in his first term and earned a reputation as the president’s favorite general,” according to the New York Times.
Cartwright had leaked classified information regarding Iran’s nuclear program to media outlets and then straight up lied to FBI officials investigating those leaks. He faced up to two years in prison before Obama swooped in and pardoned him.
The New York Times reports:
General Cartwright left government in 2011. The leak investigation that ensnared him began in June 2012, when David E. Sanger, a reporter for The New York Times, published a book, “Confront and Conceal,” and an article in The Times that described Operation Olympic Games, an American-Israeli covert effort to sabotage Iranian nuclear centrifuges with a computer virus. F.B.I. agents came to believe that General Cartwright had also been a source for a February 2012 Newsweek article that discussed cyberattacks against Iran.
But when F.B.I. agents interviewed the retired general about the book and articles, he initially lied about his discussions with the journalists, according to a government sentencing memo.
The memo said the agents showed the general emails that contradicted his account, and he passed out and was hospitalized. Several days later, when the interview resumed, he changed his account of the discussions.
According to reports, President Barack Obama based his decision to pardon the former general on James E. Cartwright’s “description of his motive, as well as because of a letter by Mr. Sanger saying that he had already learned about the program before speaking to the general and that the conversation with the general informed his thinking about which information to withhold.”
General Cartwright pleaded guilty to misleading the FBI but not to leaking classified information.
General Flynn’s case is a completely different situation.
General Flynn’s charges were dropped following revelations that officials in the FBI under President Barack Obama had set up a perjury trap for Flynn in order to get him fired as an adviser for Donald Trump.
Officials under President Barack Obama also withheld exculpatory evidence, as well as launching and carrying out a corrupt and bogus investigation over false claims of Russian collusion of where there was no empirical evidence.
But now, according to former President Barack Obama, dropping the case against General Michael Flynn was an “unprecedented” move that put the rule of law is “at risk.” Even though Flynn was the victim of entrapment and was pressured into pleading guilty.
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