'Trump's Demand for Crimea's Return an Attempt to Appease US Establishment'

As controversy swirls around Michael Flynn resigning from his national security adviser position over his contact with the Russian ambassador, President Donald Trump and Fox News both attempted to lay some blame on former President Obama on February 15 (video below).

Reports that President Trump campaign aides communicated with Russian intelligence officials show remarkable parallels to the Watergate scandal, Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonMcConnell: Trump making it "harder" to achieve his own goals Clinton campaign manager on Trump: "Parallels to Watergate here are eerie" Schumer warns of possible cover-up by Trump administration MORE's former campaign manager, Robby Mook, said Wednesday.

"The fake news media is going insane with their conspiracy theories and blind hatred".

Trump blasted the "Russian connection non-sense" on Twitter, then avoided discussing the controversy by passing over reporters from mainstream news outlets and ignoring shouted questions at a White House news conference.

Trump so far has refused to implicate his staff for any wrongdoing, and has instead insisted the real issue is intelligence leaks to the press.

President Trump gave a cold shoulder and walked off instead of answering Jim Acosta's question about his administrations ties with Russian Federation.

The New York Times cited four current and former American officials for their story, who the paper said knew of phone records and intercepted calls supporting its report.

Flynn is the third person tied to the president to lose his job over ties to the Kremlin, joining former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and former foreign policy advisor Carter Page. "You're talking about consistency, it'd be totally different that what President Obama did and how he reacted", noted Heather Nauert, who recently interviewed for a job with the administration.

On Wednesday senior Russian lawmaker Leonid Slutsky told media that Trump's actions were "alarming", but suggested that it was simply part of a transitional phase in which he has to respect the actions of the establishment. While not official, the move has prompted concerns among the intelligence community that Feinberg's role could "curtail their independence and reduce the flow of information that contradicts the president's worldview".

And Trump's contention that leaks are "the real scandal" is a pitiful attempt to deflect attention from his very troubling relationship with Russian Federation and Vladimir Putin, whom he purports to respect.

Batyuk added that the new USA administration was still in the making and that this could also be a factor behind the tough rhetoric used by Trump and some members of his Cabinet.

Russian lawmakers said Flynn's quick departure amounted to an attack on attempts to improve relations between Moscow and Washington. He coyly said the White House plans to "comply with the law".

  • Larry Hoffman