Donald Trump confirms for the first time that Paul Manafort has joined the campaign team. Alexandra Chalupa warned two months ago that Manafort was working with Trump.
Manafort has a long career in both national and foreign political campaigns. In the U.S., he aided the primary elections of Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, Bob Dole, and George Bush.
When Roy Cohn introduced Trump to Paul Manafort in the 1980s, Manafort and Roger Stone were partners at a D.C. political influence firm nicknamed “the torturer’s lobby” because their clients were brutal dictators from around the world.
Their work on behalf of dictators lengthened wars for decades, and they helped perpetrate sexual slavery, forced labor, and tens of thousands of deaths overseas in the ’80s alone.
In the years leading up to 2016, Manafort worked for Ukraine’s Russia-backed Party of Regions. Manafort and his buddies were paid by the Kremlin to help elect Vladimir Putin’s candidate Viktor Yanukovych. Part of the job involved creating agitation among Yanukovych’s supporters and organizing them to act on their agitation. Manafort and friends directed entire campaign events from start to finish to create the desired effect, down to details as small as how Yanukovych would move during a speech. The result was a presidency that led to total chaos between police and civilians. Ukraine was on the brink of civil war until Yanukovych fled to Russia.
When news breaks in June that Russian actors hacked the DNC, Manafort tells the Trump campaign to blame Ukraine. This is later revealed to be part of Russia’s disinformation crusade in the US, not an isolated campaign strategy by Manafort.
The New York Times (Archived)
NBC News (Archived)
Photo: ABC/ Ida Mae Astute