Special counsel Robert Mueller has given the Trump-Russia media a temporary feeding frenzy with the revelation that he has reportedly obtained Trump ally Erik Prince’s data from his phones and computer.
“As Mr. Prince told the Daily Beast he has spoken voluntarily with Congress and also cooperated completely with the special counsel’s investigation, including by providing them total access to his phones and computer,” a spokesperson for Erik Prince told ABC.
The Mueller probe is apparently seeking more information about Prince’s alleged involvement in developing a back channel to the Russian government. In January, following President Trump’s election, Prince reportedly traveled to Seychelles and met with Russian official Kirill Dmitriev.
Although he had no formal role in the Trump transition team, Prince was a trusted informal military and diplomatic adviser to many inside Trump’s inner circle. The former Navy SEAL has in the past overseen a multibillion-dollar security contracting enterprise.
The Left — and apparently, the Mueller team — is seeking to convince the public that the establishment of an alleged back channel with the Russians would be a violation of U.S. protocol and even U.S. law. This could not be further from the truth.
As Conservative Review has explained, back-channel diplomacy is neither new nor illegal.
Given that the alleged Seychelles meeting occurred after President Trump won the election, he was well within his right to use back channels to establish relations with the Kremlin. Presidential historians note that there is a long tradition of using back channels to conduct informal talks prior to entering office.
The Obama administration’s “lead from behind” strategy” turned U.S.-Russia relations into an unmitigated disaster. The Obama White House capitulated to Moscow at every turn, continually weakening U.S. hegemony and U.S. allies abroad. It was not only proper, but smart for the Trump team to start anew when it came to relations with Russia.