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Flynn’s behavior cannot be excused

Poor Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn — ” cajoled into lying “to FBI agents by a wily investigator and then charged by the FBI,” according to The Leader-Herald’s editorial writer in its May 28 column. The editorial writer then says that while we “should insist on ‘details’ of the case, it’s more important to examine the behavior of the FBI agents.”

Nevermind the fact that Michael Flynn, twice under oath, admitted in open federal court before Judge Sullivan that he was guilty of the deed under investigation – that is, he had lied about the fact that he had spoken with Russian Ambassador Kislyak on the very day that sanctions against the Russian government were announced by then President Barack Obama.

Now, why exactly would someone lie to an FBI agent about a simple telephone call if he knew he had made that telephone call? Why would any innocent person put his personal freedom on the line for a purely harmless telephone call? Can The Leader-Herald writer possibly suggest that a man who had served 33 years in the military, was a 3-star retired general, former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency and did not know that lying to an FBI agent in a probe could be jeopardizing his liberty? Did not Gen. Flynn recognize his moral obligation to tell the truth to his own government? Does The Leader-Herald writer really believe that Michael Flynn, former head of the top military intelligence service in the country, was really tricked by these agents? If you believe that, then you must also believe in the Tooth Fairy.

Clever try by the editorial writer at attempting to deflect from Michael Flynn’s behavior and focus elsewhere. The Leader-Herald talks about “once the Federal Government decides to go after someone, it will find ways to nail its quarry.” I guess the LH feels great sympathy for Michael Flynn.

Well I feel no sympathy for a man who wore the uniform for 33 years and then retired in a fit of anger over his removal as head of the DIA and decided to “fix” his government for that. Nevermind, that he was removed for his unseemly behavior and inability to manage the agency. His own co-workers recognized his erratic behavior and were very worried about the danger he was to the country at the time. Then this former military officer went on to take hundreds of thousands of dollars from Turkey and its authoritarian government which is curently working against the interests of the United States. And Michael Flynn conveniently “forgot” to register as an agent of a foreign government as is required by law. He also conspired with Turkey to kidnap a legal resident of the U.S. and return him to his native Turkey, despite knowing that the man’s life would be in danger in Turkey. Should our government turn a blind eye to a former general sitting at the right side of Putin and standing to applaud him in Moscow after also accepting $33,000 to speak in Russia? Who amongst you thinks that is acceptable behavior for a retired U.S. officer? The Leader-Herald may want to give Michael Flynn a pass, but I don’t.

MARIANNE MILTON

Broadalbin

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