A photo of Russia’s Vladimir Putin and Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn dinning together at a Russian state media event in December 2015 has caused a lot of controversy over the last few months.
Flynn was paid $45,000 to speak at the event, and was seated next to Putin along with others such as Putin’s chief of staff, deputy chief of staff and spokesman.
Now, Flynn is the subject of an ongoing FBI probe into alleged Russian meddling in the U.S. election and whether there were any inappropriate ties between Trump’s people and the Russian government.
Flynn’s lawyers say that, despite the FBI probe, he has done nothing wrong.
And Putin might have just backed that up.
In an interview with NBC‘s Megyn Kelly, the Russian leader has denied having any real interactions with Flynn, saying “I didn’t really talk to him.”
Speaking through a translator, he said:
“You and I, you and I personally, have a much closer relationship than I had with Mr Flynn.
“You and I met yesterday evening. You and I have been working together all day today. And now we’re meeting again.
“When I came to the event for our company, Russia Today, and sat down at the table, next to me there was a gentleman sitting on one side.
“I made my speech. Then we talked about some other stuff. And I got up and left.
“And then afterwards I was told, “You know there was an American gentleman. He was involved in some things. He used to be in the security services” … that’s it.
“I didn’t even really talk to him… That’s the extent of my acquaintance with Mr. Flynn.”
Flynn’s story backs up what Putin said. Back in August 2016, he told The Washington Post that he was seated next to Putin by the organizers and introduced to him, but they had no further conversation.
“Some interesting characters. I found it a great learning opportunity.
“One of the things I learned was that Putin has no respect for the United States leadership. Not for the United States, but the leadership.”
When he was asked how he learned this, he said:
“I just learned it from the conversations and the way questions were asked and the discussions I was part of.
“I’m arguing for the United States and I found myself with people wondering what’s going on with the US and I would tell them, you know, of course I’m standing up for the US But it’s hard when they don’t have any respect for the current leadership.”
On top of the two men denying anything happened, Jill Stein (you all remember her, right?) was also seated at the table!
Would we be having the same problems we do now if she (by some ungodly miracle) won the presidency?
We highly doubt it…
So is it really worth all this fuss? We have to say no…not even close.