|THE PATRIOT POST|
By SHAUN D. MULLEN
(Copyright © 2016-2018. All rights reserved.)
The 2016 Russian plot to elect Donald Trump by sabotaging Hillary Clinton's campaign was an unprecedented assault from America's greatest foe on the bedrock of its democracy. Without question, it is the greatest and most explosive scandal since Soviet spies stole U.S. atomic bomb secrets over 70 years ago.
Although the scandal did not come into public view until the latter stages of the presidential campaign, its roots date back to 1980 when the first two members of Trump's inner circle who are linked to the scandal got together and then in the late 1990s into the 2000s when Trump began to rely extensively on Russian investors for his beleaguered business enterprises, many with organized crime backgrounds and some with ties to Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
Putin, who was to consolidate his power through the 2000s, saw the dark side of the Internet as a way to further his ambition to return Russia to the Cold War glory of the Soviet Union. He frequently lashed out against Clinton, the target of his animus in 2016, and viewed the formidable secretary of state turned presidential candidate as an arch enemy of Russia and his regime, which was build on corruption as much as as ideology.
As early as 2007, Trump was making clear his affection for Putin. By 2015, U.S. intelligence agencies had become aware of some of the tentacles of Putin's plot to interfere in the election, as well as an increasing number of contacts by Trump's inner circle with Russians who had ties to Putin and the Kremlin's intelligence services. There also was the unholy alliance between Russian hackers and Julian Assange's WikiLeaks, which released tens of thousands of hacked Democratic National Committee emails in order to damage Clinton but not a single Republican National Committee email, although they had been hacked as well.
A plausible case can be made that Putin succeeded in delivering the presidency to Trump, though it cannot be proved or disproved. But in an election with an extraordinarily close margin, the repeated disruption of the Clinton campaign by emails published on WikiLeaks and the anti-Clinton, pro-Trump messages shared with millions of voters by Russia could have made the difference.
Although the U.S. arguably was the dominant global cyberpower in 2016 (and remains so), the response to Russia's cyberattacks by U.S. intelligence agencies and the Obama administration was by degrees inept, confused, sometimes nonexistent and failed to take into account Russia's adroit use of social media, while the news media was painfully slow to report on the scandal, let alone understand it vast ramifications. The response to the reality that Russia's cyberattacks on the homeland continue and that the 2018 midterm elections may be targeted is similarly disjointed while being undermined by a president whose allegiance to Putin and the indifference of his political allies are beyond dispute.
This timeline is organized into five sections: The Prequel (1980~June 2015), The Campaign (June 2015~January 2017), The Presidency (January 2017~January 2108), Investigation and Pushback (January 2018~November 2018), and On The Run (November 2018 to the present.)
Use the search box in the upper left-hand corner as a shortcut to finding specific information within the timeline. Search terms can include names and dates such as Manafort or June 9, 2016.
This timeline, which includes events that have bearing on the scandal but are not directly a part of it, is a work in progress. I have drawn only on sources considered to be reputable. They are listed below.
1980: Roger Stone, future Trump confidante and dirty trickster, founds a lobbying practice with future Trump presidential campaign manager Paul Manafort and Charlie Black. Trump is one of their first clients. Rick Gates joins the firm as an intern later in the 1980s.
1982: Soviet KGB chairman Yuri Andropov instructs his intelligence officers to use so-called active measures to discredit adversaries and influence public opinion in a covert effort to prevent the reelection of Ronald Reagan.
1984: Reagan wins in a landslide.
1984: Russian émigré David Bogatin, a former Soviet Army pilot, pays $6 million for five luxury condos in Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue in New York City. One is purchased in his own name and the others by shell companies. Bogatin is a front for Russian mobsters investing in high-end U.S. real estate to launder money from their criminal enterprises, notably gasoline bootlegging and evading federal gasoline taxes. Trump personally attends Bogatin's closing.
1984: KGB spy chief General Vladimir Alexandrovich Kryuchov sends a series of classified memos to KGB station chiefs ordering them to try to recruit more Americans who show ideological sympathy toward the USSR.
May 14, 1984: Trump opens the first of three casino-hotels in Atlantic City.
March 10, 1985: Mikhail Gorbachev succeeds Konstantin Chernenko as general secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
Fall 1986: Trump is seated next to Soviet ambassador Yuri Dubinin at a New York luncheon hosted by Leonard Lauder, businessman son of Estée Lauder. They discuss building a large luxury hotel across the street from the Kremlin in partnership with the Soviet government.
November 19, 1985: President Ronald Reagan and Gorbachev meet for the first time in Geneva. They discuss improving relations and working to abolish nuclear weapon stockpiles.
1987: Gorbachev begins pursuing far-reaching economic reforms known as perestroika.
1987: The Soviets begin work on Novichok No. 5, a powerful nerve agent that is later used in several political assassinations and attempts, including the March 2018 poisoning of Sergei Skripal.
January 1987: Dubinin invites Trump to the Soviet Union as an all-expense paid guest of Intourist, which in reality is a subsidiary of the KGB.
March 11, 1987: Bogatin pleads guilty in federal court to taking part in a massive gasoline bootlegging scheme with Russian mobsters. The government intends to seize his five Trump Tower condos, but they are so over-leveraged because financial manipulations as to be virtually worthless.
May 4, 1987: An Australian police board issues a confidential report stating that an application by Trump to build a casino in Sydney should be denied because of his American Mafia connections. A financial review also finds that Trump is undercapitalized and his proposal is not financially viable.
July 1987: Trump and wife Ivana visit Moscow and St. Petersburg. The Trumps sightsee and inspect potential sites for a Trump Tower in Moscow, but the deal apparently does not go forward because the Soviet government would retain 51 percent ownership in a joint deal.
September 2, 1987: Trump tells The New York Times that he is not interested in running for political office in New York, but indicates that "the Presidency is another matter."
1988: Stone urges Trump to run for president. He declines.
1988: Czechoslovakia's Communist-run Státní Bezpečnost security service, controlled by the Soviet Union, begins a long-term spying mission against Trump, whose wife Ivana is Czech, in an effort to learn more about the upper echelons of the U.S. government.
1988: Trump invites reputed Russian mobster Robert LiButti, an associate of Mafia kingpin John Gotti, to join him for a WrestleMania match in Atlantic City, New Jersey and later buys a racehorse for $500,000 from him. The horse turns up lame and Trump stiffs LiButti. Still later, Trump denies having ever met LiButti.
December 8, 1988: Trump and his wife attend a state dinner at the Reagan White House where he meets Gorbachev. They discuss economics and hotels.
January 20, 1989: George H.W. Bush takes office. His presidency is marked by an arms-length relationship with Gorbachev and then Boris Yeltsin.
November 9, 1989: The Berlin Wall falls.
April 2, 1990: The Trump Taj Mahal, estimated to cost $1 billion, opens in Atlantic City and immediately becomes a haven for Russian money launderers.
August 28, 1990: The first Soviet connection to the global Internet is made.
1991: Putin concludes a 16-year career as a KGB officer.
1991: LiButti is banned from New Jersey casinos because of ties to Mafia boss John Gotti, then chief of the Gambino crime syndicate. Trump is fined $650,000 for his dealings with LiButti, who gambled huge sums at the Trump Plaza hotel casino.
June 12, 1991: Yeltsin becomes the first democratically elected president of Russia, which still is part of the Soviet Union.
July 1991: The Trump Taj Mahal. burdened with debt, files for bankruptcy.
August 1, 1991: President Bush gives his so-called "Chicken Kiev" speech in which he says the U.S. will not support advocates of Ukrainian independence in order to replace "a far-off tyranny with local despotism."
August 19~22, 1991: Hard-line members of the Soviet Communist Party try to fail to take control of the country in the so-called August Coup in what is viewed as a victory for Russian democrats and Yeltsin, who leads a campaign of civil resistance.
November 6, 1991: Yeltsin disbands the KGB, the main state security agency. He creates the FSK and several other agencies to replace it, ostensibly to diminish the powers of the security police and protect new democratic freedoms.
December 25, 1991: The Soviet Union collapses after months of economic chaos. Yeltsin orders a dramatic shift from a centralized state-owned economy to a market economy, which enables mobsters and corrupt government officials to privatize and loot state-held assets.
1992: The Center for Public Integrity releases a scathing report called "The Torturer's Lobby" on Manafort's representation of leaders who have clung to power through corruption and bloodshed.
Early 1992: Russian mob boss and enforcer Vyachelsav Kirillovich Ivankov is sprung from a Siberian gulag after a judge is bribed. He travels to New York where he partners with Felix Komarov, an art dealer and resident of Trump Plaza on Third Avenue, to expand the New York branch of the Russian mafia from an extortion racket into a multibillion-dollar criminal enterprise.
February 1992: Spy magazine names the lobbying firm run by Manafort, Black and Stone as the "sleaziest of all in the Beltway."
January 20, 1993: Bill Clinton takes office for the first of two terms. The early years of his presidency is marked by support for Yeltsin and Russian economic reforms.
May 1994: The FBI organizes the first squad dedicated to fighting the spreading power of the Russian mob. Its first major target is Ivankov.
December 11, 1994: Yeltsin orders the invasion of the breakaway republic of Chechnya. President Clinton excuses the invasion as a necessary defense of Russian unity.
1995: Konstantine Kilimnik, a Ukrainian businessman who taught Putin judo and has ties to Russian intelligence and is an associate of billionaire aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska, who runs Rusal and is a friend of Putin's with deep organized crime ties, joins the International Republican Institute (IRI) in Moscow, an organization that promotes democracy worldwide.
1995: Kilimnik establishes a business relationship with Manafort and sometimes serves as his interpreter.
April 12, 1995: Yeltsin creates the FSB, which succeeds the FSK as the main Russian security agency relating to internal affairs.
June 12, 1995: A New Jersey Division of Gambling Enforcement analysis of casino owner Trump's financial stability concludes that all of his significant sources of cash flow "appear to be one-time occurrences" and that his financial problems are likely to grow because of his debts and his major potential income streams were heavily leveraged.
March 1996: American fears that Communists would defeat Yeltsin for re-election and doom perestroika results in a Bill Clinton-led initiative to float a $10 billion International Monetary Fund loan to Russia four months before the election and dispatching a team of political consultants to advise Yeltsin.
July 3, 1996: Yeltsin wins a second term in an election widely considered to be fraudulent and a victory for oligarchs and organized-crime figures.
July 5, 1995: Yeltsin signs an act into law giving the FSB substantially more surveillance and communications interception powers.
November 1996: Trump unsuccessfully tries to partner with U.S. tobacco company Brooke Group to build an apartment and office complex in Moscow.
1997: In a little noticed academic paper, Louise Shelley, a professor who studies Russian organized crime, writes "The present passivity against the growing power and entrenchment of post-Soviet organized crime may usher in a new form of authoritarianism with very severe long-term consequences for . . . the former Soviet Union -- and indeed for the rest of the world."
January 23, 1997: Trump meets with retired Soviet general Alexander Lebed, who is running to be Russian president, at Trump Tower, where they discuss plans to build "something major" in Moscow.
January 29, 1997: Ivankov, who has been hiding out in Trump Tower, finally is apprehended. FBI agents find a phone book with numbers for the Trump Organization and Trump's Trump Tower residence. Ivankov later is sentenced to nine years in prison for extortion in federal court in Brooklyn.
March 26, 1997: Yeltsin names Putin as deputy chief of his presidential staff.
November 22, 1997: Trump and his siblings gain ownership of most of their father’s business empire. It is later revealed that the Trumps dodged hundreds of millions in gift taxes by submitting tax returns that grossly undervalued the properties, claiming they were worth just $41.4 million. The same set of buildings would be sold off over the next decade for more than 16 times that amount.
1998: Trump begins a longtime business relationship with Deutsche Bank, which gives him a $125 million loan for renovations to his 40 Wall Street property despite being blacklisted by the major Wall Street firms because of his financial liabilities.
1998: Russian émigré Felix H. Sater, a felon and future fixer for Trump with a criminal past, begins working as a sometime FBI and CIA informant.
June 11, 1998: Independent Russian journalists reveal that the FSB has been empowered to place so-called SORM "black boxes" in all Internet service providers servers, creating a back door for it to monitor Internet traffic.
July 25, 1998: Yeltsin appoints Putin to head the FSB. One of his first acts is to activate the SORM system.
August 19, 1998: Russia defaults on $40 billion in debt, which accelerates the exodus of money, including tens of millions of dollars that flow into Trump's luxury developments and Atlantic City casinos, which are used as pass-throughs for laundering illicit riches.
October 15, 1998: Ground is broken for 72-story Trump World Tower, then the tallest residential building in the city, on First Avenue in Manhattan. A third of the units on the tower's priciest floors are bought by either individual buyers from the former Soviet Union or limited liability companies connected to Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. Kellyanne Conway, a future Trump campaign manager, also purchases a unit.
November 20, 1998: Galina Starovoitova, a parliament deputy and pro-democracy advocate, is shot to death in the hallway of her St. Petersburg apartment building in the first political assassination tied to Putin and his associates following his FSB appointment.
1999: Relations between Clinton and Yeltsin sour over the U.S.-led bombing campaign in Serbia and Russia's second invasion of Chechnya.
June 25, 1999: Trump's father, Fred C. Trump, dies. It is later revealed that despite Donald Trump's claims of being a self-made billionaire, he inherited the equivalent of $413 million in 2018 dollars from his father's real estate empire, much of it acquired through tax dodges and outright fraud in which he was a deeply involved co-conspirator.
August 9, 1999: Yeltsin, his presidency under seige because of impending impeachment proceedings led by the Communists, appoints Putin prime minister.
Late summer~early fall of 1999: Nearly 300 people are killed when apartment blocks are destroyed by bombs in Moscow, Buynaksk and Volgodonsk. Putin blames Chechen terrorists, but the bombings were almost certainly carried out by the FSB as a pretext to launch a military attack on Chechnya and for Putin to position himself as a strong and aggressive leader. The bombings are considered a foundational act in Putin's rise to power comparable to Hitler's 1933 burning of the German Reichstag.
October 1999: Trump leaves the Republican Party and enters the 2000 presidential race as a Reform Party candidate, using Twitter as a way to try to build support. Stone is his political director.
October 1, 1999: The Clinton administration and Congress, believing that the U.S.'s propaganda war with the Soviet Union had ended with its collapse, shutters the U.S. Information Agency, its preeminent global propaganda tool.
December 31, 1999: Yeltsin resigns and Putin becomes acting president.
March 2000: Trump drops out of the Reform Party race after conceding to far-right candidate Pat Buchanan, who becomes the nominee.
March 26, 2000: Putin is elected president, receiving 53.4 percent of the vote in a three-way race. He immediately begins moving Russia away from democratic reforms and in a more autocratic direction.
July 16, 2000: Reporter Igor Dominkov, who had written of malfeasance and bribery in the Putin regime, dies of injuries suffered in a May 12, 2000 beating in the entryway of his Moscow apartment building.
2001: Lawyer and future Trump fixer Michael Cohen buys a $1 million Trump Tower condo. In the next five years, he, family members and business associates buy Trump properties worth a combined $17.3 million.
January 20, 2001: George W. Bush takes office for the first of two terms.
June 16, 2001: Bush and Putin meet in Ljubljana, Slovenia. Bush famously declares of Putin "I looked the man in the eye. I found him to be very straightforward and trustworthy."
September 4, 2001: Robert Mueller becomes FBI director.
September 11, 2001: Al Qaeda launches four coordinated terror attacks on the U.S. Putin is the first world leader to reach out to Bush and there is a further thaw in U.S.-Russia relations.
2002: Sater and his Bayrock Group begin working with Trump on a series of U.S. real estate development deals, one of which becomes the Trump SoHo luxury hotel-apartments, and on projects in Russia, Ukraine and Poland.
2002: Trump's partner in a Toronto hotel deal is identified as Leib Waldman, who had fled to Canada from the U.S. after pleading guilty to bankruptcy fraud and embezzlement in 1995. Waldman is subsequently extradited to the U.S. and imprisoned.
January 2002: In the first known instance of Kremlin-instigated denial of service (DOS) attacks, the website of a Chechen separatist website is paralyzed.
May 24, 2002: President George W. Bush, heralding an historic thaw in U.S.-Russian relations in the wake of the 9/11 attacks and Russia's offensive against Chechen separatists, declares a partnership in the war on terror when he meets with Putin in Moscow. In retrospect, the meeting is seen as a high point in U.S.-Russian relations.
August 1, 2002: Pro-democracy parliament deputy Vladimir Golovlev is shot dead on a street near his Moscow home while walking his dog.
March 19, 2003: The U.S. invades Iraq to topple Saddam Hussein, chilling U.S.-Russia relations. Putin states that the invasion confirms his view the U.S. is an imperial hegemon.
July 3, 2003: Russian investigative reporter Yuri Shchekochikhin, a critic of Putin's reprisals in Chechnya, dies from an apparent poisoning with radioactive material several days before he was to depart for the U.S. to meet with FBI agents.
October 23, 2003: Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the CEO of oil giant Yukos, is arrested and charged with fraud and tax evasion. It is widely believed Putin ordered the arrest because he saw Khodorkovsky as a threat to his rule.
2004: Manafort consulting firm partner Rick Davis introduces Manafort to Deripaska. They discuss resurrecting the career of Igor Giorgadze, a former KGB officer and exiled former minister of state security in the former Soviet republic of Georgia who had plotted to assassinate the country's then president, Eduard Shevardnadze.
2004: Ivankov is extradited to Russia to face murder charges.
January 8, 2004: The first episode of The Apprentice airs. The television show stars and is co-produced by Trump.
May 4, 2004: Trump and his siblings sell off the empire their father had spent 70 years assembling. Trump's cut is $177.3 million.
May 20, 2004: Eduard Nektalov, a diamond dealer from Uzbekistan who owned a condo on a top floor of Trump World Tower and was being investigated for money laundering, is shot dead on Sixth Avenue after rumors circulate that he is cooperating with federal authorities.
July 9, 2004: American journalist Paul Klebnikov, who investigated official corruption for Forbes magazine, is shot on a Moscow street by assailants who fire from a slow-moving car. He dies a short time later when the hospital elevator taking him to an operating room breaks down.
Early September 2004: Anna Politkovskaya, a journalist and human rights activist, falls violently ill after drinking poison-laced tea given to her by an Aeroflot flight attendant. She survives.
September 24, 2004: Roman Tsepov, a former KGB officer turned businessman and ostensible Putin ally, falls violently ill and later dies after visiting a KGB office on September 11 and drinking tea laced with a radioactive substance.November 22,
November 22, 2004: Publicly traded Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts file for bankruptcy.
December 26, 2004: Opposition candidate Viktor Yushchenko defeats Putin-backed Viktor Yanukoyvich for president of the former Soviet republic of Ukraine in the so-called Orange Revolution despite eating a near-lethal dose of dioxin in some food, which left him disfigured. Putin, who is widely believed to have ordered the poisoning, blames Yushchenko's victory on a U.S.-backed coup.
2005: Deutsche Bank provides Trump with a $640 million construction loan to build the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago. The project nears completion right as the global financial crisis hits.
Spring of 2005: Kilimnik is fired by the IRI over a violation of its ethics code because of his work for Manafort and suspicions he was working for Russian intelligence.
June 2005: Manafort proposes to Deripaska that he undertake a consulting assignment to influence politics, business deals and news coverage in the U.S. and Europe to benefit Putin's government. In a memo, he tells him "We are now confident that this model can greatly benefit the Putin government." Deripaska puts Davis Manafort Partners on a $10 million annual consulting retainer.
Summer of 2005: Yanukovych meets with Manafort at the Baltschug Hotel in Moscow to assist in upcoming Ukraine parliamentary elections. Manafort reportedly is paid $20 million. He opens an office in Kiev and names Kilimnik his office manager. Gates assists.
October 26, 2005: TrumpNation, by former New York Times business reporter Tim O'Brien, is published. It states that Trump is not a billionaire but worth only $150 to $250 million. Trump files a $5 billion defamation lawsuit claiming that the book had cost him several business deals, including a Trump Tower in Moscow. The lawsuit is ultimately dismissed.
2006: U.S. diplomats in Kiev inform the State Department in a confidential cable that Davis Manafort Partners is consulting Yanukovych's Ukrainian Party of Regions in an effort to cleanse its gangster image and change it into "a legitimate political force."
2006: Manafort buys a condo on an upper floor of Trump Tower for $3.6 million. Over the next seven years, he also buys a brownstone in Brooklyn and a Trump SoHo condo, using shell companies and paying with cash for the three properties.
2006: Gates joins Davis Manafort Partners.
2006: Trump learns that Cohen and his extended family are buying up numerous units in his properties. He recruits Cohen for the Trump Organization because of his expertise as a conduit for money from countries of the former Soviet Union, reportedly as a favor to Cohen's father-in-law, Fima Shusterman, a Ukrainian émigré who has a 1993 conviction for a money laundering-related crime. Cohen later becomes Trump's personal lawyer and fixer.
2006: With Cohen's emergence as a conduit, Trump moves dramatically from accumulating enormous bank debt into paying cash. From 2006 on, according to a May 6, 2018 report in The Washington Post, Trump spent over $400 million in cash on various investments, often paying for new properties entirely on his own and 100 percent in cash. This gives context to a later remark by younger son Eric Trump that "[W]e don't rely on American banks. We have all the funding we need out of Russia." And another by Donald Jr. that "Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets. . . . We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia."
2006: Trump becomes executive producer for the Russian version of The Apprentice.
January 2006: Manafort and Davis arrange for Deripaska to meet with Senators John McCain, Saxby Chambliss and John Sununu during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in an unsuccessful effort to obtain a U.S. visa, which had been blocked because of his organized crime ties.
February 2006: Two of Trump's children, Donald Jr. and Ivanka, travel to Moscow where they are shown around by Sater.
May 2006: Engineers working for a secret U.S./Israeli cyberweapon program compile code for a component of Stuxnet, a malicious computer worm, that will allow them to attack the controllers for the gas centrifuges being used by Iran in its uranium enrichment facilities.
July 2006: Putin signs a law expanding the FSB's mission to include killing suspected terrorists on foreign soil. The definition of terrorism is so vaguely worded that anyone who opposes the Putin regime can be considered a terrorist.
September 14, 2006: Andrei Kozlov, who as a leading executive of the Russian Central Bank had revoked the licenses of several banks complicitous in money laundering for oligarchs and mobsters, and his chauffeur die from gunshot wounds fired by gunmen on a Moscow street.
October 7, 2006: Politkovskaya is fatally shot in the head, chest and shoulder at point-blank range in an elevator in her central Moscow apartment block. The assassination occurs on Putin's birthday.
October 16, 2006: An attempt to poison Alexander Litvinenko in London on orders of a Putin lieutenant fails. The former FSB officer specialized in tracking Russian organized crime and had become a Putin foe.
November 11, 2006: Litvinenko becomes violently ill after being poisoned by a large dose of a radioactive substance that is slipped into his tea at an upscale London hotel.
November 23, 2006: Litvinenko dies. MI6, the British intelligence service, assigns Russia expert Christopher Steele to investigate. He quickly deduces that Putin probably ordered the assassination and that Litvinenko and Politkovskaya were friends and she had often visited him in London.
November 24, 2006: Egor Gaidar, a pro-democracy advocate and former associate of Starovoitova, becomes violently ill after being poisoned with an unknown substance while attending a conference in Ireland. He survives.
December 2006: Manafort escorts Yanukovych around Washington and arranges for him to meet Vice President Dick Cheyney. Manafort's efforts trigger complaints to the FBI that he is acting as an undeclared foreign lobbyist, but the bureau does not pursue the issue.
2007: The Trump World Tower condo board, where Cohen lived at the time, tries to remove the Trump name from the building. Cohen intervenes, gets the entire board thrown out, and is soon is earning a $500,000 salary at Trump Tower.
2007: Ground is broken for the $500 million Trump Tower Toronto, which is advertised as a joint venture with Alexander Shnaider, whose father-in-law "has links to powerful political figures in the former Soviet Union," according to The Toronto Star.
January 2007: Future Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner buys 666 Fifth Avenue in New York City at the height of a real estate boom for $1.8 billion, at the time the most expensive building ever sold in the U.S. It becomes the flagship property of his family's real estate business, but soon plummets in value.
2007: Bruce Ohr, a mid-level Justice Department official who specializes in Russian organized crime, meets Steele. They become friends and later associates in an effort to flip Russian oligarchs close to Putin.
February 12, 2007: Putin, speaking at the Munich Security Conference, attacks the U.S. for attempting to be the world's "one master, one soverign."
March 2, 2007: Ivan Safronov, a journalist who had written of critically of the Russian military, dies in a fall from the fifth floor of his Moscow apartment in what is suspected to be a murder made to look like a suicide.
April 27, 2007: Russia launches its first major external cyber attack on government websites in the former Soviet republic of Estonia.
October 15, 2007: Trump, speaking publicly of Putin for the first time, tells Larry King on CNN that Putin "is doing a great job . . . he's doing a great job in rebuilding the image of Russia and also rebuilding Russia period."
November 22, 2007: Trump Vodka debuts at the Moscow Millionaire's Fair. Trump meets Serge Millian, president of the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce in the USA and later possibly an unnamed source in the Steele dossier.
December 2007: Trump, in the course of being deposed in a lawsuit he filed against author Timothy O'Brien, admits he lied 30 times in previous statements regarding a range of subjects from sales at his condominium buildings to the depth of his past debts.
December 17, 2007: Sater's criminal past is detailed in a New York Times story.
December 19, 2007: Trump claims in a legal deposition that he interacted very little with Sater.
2008: Trump defaults on repayment of the $640 million Deutsche Bank loan on Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago following the global financial crash. The bank files for a summary judgment, seeking an immediate $40 million. Trump countersues for $3 billion, stating that he has no intention of repaying because the global financial crisis is a "once-in-a-century credit tsunami" co-created by the bank. A judge throws out Trump's countersuit, but the bank does not sever ties and its personal wealth division gives Trump another $25 to $50 million in credit on his personal guarantee.
2008: One third of the six Trump-branded condo skyscrapers in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, which is nicknamed "Little Moscow," are owned by Russian speakers.
2008: Manafort partners on a deal with Deripaska and Ukrainian billionaire mobster Dmitry Firtash, both Putin allies, to buy the Drake Hotel in Manhattan and convert it to the Bulgari Tower, a $1.5 billion luxury condo development, reportedly as a way to launder illegal funds. The deal later falls through.
April 2008: Deripaska pays nearly $18.9 million to fund the acquisition of Chorne More, a Ukrainian telecom, then pays Manafort an additional $7.35 million in fees. Years later, Deripaska learns that the purchase price was $1.1 million less than Manafort and Gates had led him to believe and the men had pocketed the difference after laundering it through accounts in Cyprus that the two men used for an elaborate tax dodge.
May 7, 2008: Dmitry Medvedev, who is relatively liberal compared to Putin, becomes Russian president because Putin is constitutionally barred from serving more than two consecutive terms. Putin still plays a key policy-making role as prime minister.
Mid-2008: China hacks the computers of the presidential campaigns of Obama and McCain.
Mid-2008: Deripaska, who has extensive business ties in Iran, is enlisted by the FBI to help find Robert Levinson, a CIA contractor who had disappeared in Iran in March 2007, in return for a promise that he be given a visa to enter the U.S. The plan falls through, but the FBI makes an end-run around the State Department, which refuses to give Deripaska a visa because of his suspected organized crime ties, and he is issued a visa under a special program that allows him to enter the country twice.
Summer of 2008: McCain's presidential campaign staff scraps plans for Manafort to be their Republican National Convention manager because of his ties to Deripaska.
July 2008: Russian government hackers take down government websites in the former Soviet satellite of Lithuania.
July 2008: Trump sells a Florida residence to Russian potash magnate Dmitry Rybolov for $95 million, believed to be the biggest single-family home sale in U.S. history. The oligarch never lives in the house, which is later demolished.
August 7, 2008: Russia invades Georgia. The Bush administration responds meekly and neither the U.S. nor NATO respond to pleas for military assistance.
August 8, 2008: Russian government hackers take down Georgia government websites.
October 23, 2008: The Bush administration imposes sanctions on Rosobornexport, Russia's state arms export corporation, for selling arms to Iran.
October 24, 2008: The Pentagon becomes aware that Russia has broken into computers at several defense research facilities and the U.S. Central Command in an attack given the name "Midnight Maze." The intrusions were caused, in part, by ingeniously seeding bazaars in the Middle East and Afghanistan where U.S. soldiers shop with thumb drives embedded with malware that enabled the Kremlin to access the computers.
November 8, 2008: Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian lawyer and auditor who uncovered a $230 million web of corruption and tax fraud involving law enforcement, tax officials and the Russian mafia is arrested by the same police whom he alleged were involved in the scheme.
2009: Rinat Akhmetshin, a Russian immigrant who is to attend the June 9, 2016 meeting with Donald Jr., becomes an American citizen. U.S. intelligence begins monitoring his activities because of his associations with Russian spies.
2009: Obscured by offshore shell companies, Putin's government begins investing hundreds of millions of dollars in Facebook and Twitter.
2009: Former Wall Street Journal investigative reporter Glenn Simpson founds Fusion GPS, a Washington-based strategic intelligence firm.
January 20, 2009: Barack Obama takes office for the first of two terms.
January 23, 2009: Human rights lawyer and Putin critic Stanislav Markelov is gunned down on a street near the Kremlin.
March 6, 2009: Clinton holds the first of several meetings with foreign minister Sergei Lavrov. In a request repeated in subsequent meetings, he asks her to intervene on behalf of Deripaska, who has been periodically blocked from entering the U.S., so he can obtain a visa. Clinton never acts on the requests.
April 1, 2009: U.S.-Israeli cyberattackers begin to deploy Stuxnet on Iranian centrifuges under the operational moniker "Olympic Games" on the 30th anniversary of the declaration of the Islamic Republic in Iran.
May 2009: Alexandr Torshin, a Russian parliament member, begins a series of little-publicized visits to the U.S. in an apparent effort to advance Moscow's long-term objectives in the U.S. by establishing common political interests with American conservatives, primarily involving religious and gun issues. He visits St. Louis, Houston, Indianapolis, Nashville and Louisville, among other heartland cities, over a seven-year period.
June 2009: The U.S. Cyber Command is created at Fort Meade, Maryland, to fight back against cyber attacks on the government and homeland.
July 7, 2009: President Obama visits Russia and promises a "reset" in relations in a meeting with Medvedev. A contemporaneous National Security Council (NSC) memo written by Michael McFaul and Celeste Wallander notes the deterioration of political and human rights, but states issues such as arms control and nuclear nonproliferation are too important "to be held hostage to an increasingly authoritarian internal situation." Obama meets with Putin for the first and last time until he becomes president again in 2009. They would never have a formal summit meeting.
July 15, 2009: Human rights activist and Putin critic Natalya Estemirova is abducted from her apartment in Grozny, capital of Chechnya. Shot in the head and chest, her body is discovered 50 miles away in neighboring Ingushetia.
July 28, 2009: Ivankov is shot by a sniper in Moscow. He dies of his wounds 73 days later. Hundreds of gangsters representing criminal syndicates attend his funeral.
November 16, 2009: Magnitsky dies in a Moscow prison, where he had been held without trial for 11 months, after allegedly being beaten and tortured by Ministry of the Interior officers.
2010: VEB, a Putin-controlled bank, finances the financially troubled Trump International Hotel and Tower in Toronto.
January 2010: Sater becomes Trump's "senior adviser."
2010: Lenders foreclose on Trump Hollywood. Thirteen units had been purchased by individuals with Russian passports or Russian addresses.
2010: The U.S. Cyber Command develops "Nitro Zeus," a super secret cyber battle plan to incapacitate Iran's air defense, communications and power grid systems in the event of a diplomatic failure with Iran and the onset of a war.
February 7, 2010: Yanukovych is elected Ukraine president.
April 9, 2010: Trump SoHo opens.
May 10, 2010: Former Bayrock finance director Jody Kriss files a lawsuit against the company alleging that it financed Trump SoHo with dirty money from Kazhakstan and Russia. He calls the building "a Russian mob project."
June 2010: Ten Russian sleeper agents, including media personality and model Anna Vasilyevna Chapman, are arrested in the U.S. and deported to Russia as part of a prisoner swap that involves Britain. It includes the release of double agent Skripal, jailed by Russia in 2006 for passing the names of Russian agents on to MI6. Skripal is given asylum in the U.K. and becomes the victim of an apparent poisoning in March 2018. Some members of the Obama administration initially opposed the arrests, fearing it would damage the "reset," but relent when CIA Director Leon Panetta warns of adverse media publicity if the spies are allowed to remain.
June 9, 2010: In a further sign of a thaw in relations, Russia joins the U.S. in voting for a sweeping U.N. Security Council resolution approving sweeping sanctions against Iran.
June 24, 2010: Medvedev visits Obama at the White House.
Summer of 2010: Obama directs the National Security Agency (NSA) to launch a cyberattack on Iran's nuclear program. About a thousand centrifuges used for uranium enrichment are destroyed.
June 25, 2010: Secretary of State Clinton urges Russia to bring to justice the officials responsible for Magnitsky's death.
August 3, 2010: Trump and the promoters of Trump SoHo are sued by buyers who accuse them of fraudulently touting outsized sales figures to encourage them to buy units.
September 4, 2010: Obama and Medvedev sign the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty in Prague. Obama promises to lift sanctions on Rosobornexport.
November 2010: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad discloses that a cyber weapon later identified as Stuxnet has damaged the gas centrifuges at his nation's uranium enrichment facility.
December 6, 2010: Attorney General Eric Holder says he has authorized "significant" actions in a criminal investigation of WikiLeaks and founder Julian Assange following its publication of hacked State Department documents that revealed a hidden world of backstage international diplomacy and impacted negatively on Clinton.
December 7, 2010: WikiLeaks supporters strike back at perceived enemies of Assange, attacking the websites of Swedish prosecutors, the Swedish lawyer whose clients have accused Assange of sex crimes, the Swiss authority that froze Assange's bank account, and MasterCard, which had attempted to block payments to WikiLeaks.
December 30, 2010: Khodorkovsky is sentenced to 14 years in prison.
2011: As Arab Spring uprisings spread across the Middle East, Putin and his aides come to understand the role Facebook and Twitter are playing and worry that the U.S. has found a tool that can bring people into the streets without any organizing structure. Social network technology is made a priority for the FSB.
2011: Millian's Russian-American Chamber of Commerce partners with Rossotrudnichestvo, a Russian government organization that promoted Russian culture abroad, to mount a 10-day exchange that brought 50U.S. entrepreneurs to Moscow. The FBI later concludes the junket to recruit Americans for Russian intelligence.
2011: G. Kline Preston, a Nashville lawyer who specializes in Russian affairs, introduces Torshin to David Keene, then-president of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and former president of the American Conservative Union. Torshin is a friend of Mikhail Kalashnikov, revered inventor of the AK-47 assault rifle, which through the NRA's efforts can be purchased in semi-automatic form by Americans.
March 10, 2011: In a ceremony with caviar and wine at Trump Tower, Trump signs a deal to develop two towers costing $300 million in the Republic of Georgia -- one, the Trump Tower Riviera in Batumi on the Black Sea, and the other, the Trump Tower Tblisi on Rose Revolution Square in Georgia's capital -- under which he will pay $1 million for naming rights. The Batumi deal involves unorthodox financing through the Silk Road Group, a trading and transport company that has deals with companies in Russia and Iran and involves Kazakh oligarch Timur Kulibayev and his family, who are linked to Putin and accused of stealing billions of dollars of Kazakh money and laundering it through Trump SoHo and other Trump-branded condos. The towers are never built.
April 2011: A Russian-speaking American cybersecurity researcher receives an unsolicited email from "Kate S. Milton." That and subsequent emails through March 2012 are later found to be from Ivan Yermakov, one of 12 GRU intelligence officers indicted in July 2018.
September 2011: Putin is alarmed by a new interactive digital map showing election polling places where fraud is suspected that is put online by an independent election group in advance of December 4 elections. Pro-Kremlin hackers try to compromise the map by feeding it false information.
September 24, 2011: Putin announces his intention to run for president in the March 2012 election.
October 11, 2o11: Yanukovych rival and former Ukraine Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko is sentenced to prison on politically motivated charges that she abused her office while brokering a 2009 gas deal with Russia. Manafort's Washington lobbyists mount a campaign on Yanukovych's behalf to convince U.S. lawmakers that the trial was legitimate. He secretly pays $4 million to the New York law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom for a supposedly independent report on Tymoshenko that finds there was no political motivation for her trial. Skadden Arps attorney Alex Vander Zwaan would plead guilty in February 2018 to lying about a conversation he had with Gates regarding the Tymoshenko report.
November 2011: Tymoshenko sues Manafort in New York federal court. She alleges that he played a key role in skimming money from Ukrainian natural gas transactions and laundering it through New York-based shell companies before being funneled back to Europe to bribe corrupt Ukrainian officials. The suit is thrown out on the grounds that the allegations are outside U.S. jurisdiction.
December 4, 2011: Putin's United Russia party wins a majority in parliamentary elections. There are reports that Clinton's State Department intervened in the elections, although evidence is scanty. Anti-Putin activists mark the elections as the end of democratic reforms in post-Soviet Russia and, combined with Putin's announcement that he will see the presidency, effectively marks the end of Obama's reset policy.
December 4, 2011: Preston serves as an international observer for the Russian elections. He reports that they were fair, a conclusion at odds with that of many international observers and the interactive digital polling place map, which despite hacking attempts shows massive fraud.
December 5, 2011: Massive DOS attacks commence that target the websites of independent Russian media outlets following a Kremlin warning not to report election fraud.
December 5, 2011: A surge of emails ostensibly promoting an anti-Putin rally have attachments containing malware, which when opened by unsuspecting users overwrite and destroy computer files.
December 5, 2011: Eugene Kaspersky, who has a KGB background, is the most prominent Russian expert on cybersecurity and later heads Kaspersky Lab, denies that the DOS attacks occurred.
December 6, 2011: Clinton, attending an international conference on Afghanistan in Bonn, questions the legitimacy of the election, infuriating Putin, who believes she is responsible for protests that erupt just hours after her remarks.
2012: Trump again considers running for president with Stone as an advisor. The short-lived effort largely consists of a website called ShouldTrumpRun.com created by Cohen.
2012: Aras Agalarov, an Azerbaijani-Russian billionaire known as "Putin's Builder" and close ally of Putin, builds the massive infrastructure for the Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Vladivostok.
2012: Manafort and Gates start a two-year, undercover lobbying operation for Yanukovyich.
March 4, 2012: Putin is reelected president, winning 63 percent of the vote over three other candidates amidst further protests. In a closed meeting with political allies, he blames Clinton for the protests.
April 17, 2012: "The Julian Assange Show" debuts on RT, a Russian government-backed television news network.
May 7, 2012: Putin is sworn in as president.
May 16, 2012: Donald Jr. and Ivanka Trump are on the verge of being indicted by the Manhattan DA's Office for misleading prospective Trump SoHo condo buyers when longtime Trump lawyer Marc Kasowitz, an attorney hired by Trump and major contributor to DA Cyrus Vance Jr.'s reelection campaign, visits Vance. Vance later overrules his prosecutors and the case is dropped.
June 19, 2012: Obama meets Putin for the first time at a gathering of Group of 20 leaders in Mexico. Trump tweets, "Putin has no respect for our president -- really bad body language."
July 24, 2012: Obama names Lieutenant General Michael Flynn to head the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).
September 11~12, 2012: Terrorists attack two U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, killing Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other people.
October 11, 2012: Panetta, now secretary of defense, warns in a speech at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York of the potential for a "Cyber Pearl Harbor" from a foreign power that could "paralyze and shock the nation and create a new, profound sense of vulnerability."
November 2012: Torshin observes the U.S. presidential election at a county election office and polling station in Tennessee at the invitation of Preston.
November 10, 2012: Alexander Perepilichnyy, a businessman and whistleblower who had left Russia in 2009, collapses and dies while jogging near his Surrey home outside of London. The death originally is attributed to natural causes, but traces of a chemical from a poisonous plant are later found in his stomach. He is alleged to have been killed as part of a conspiracy to cover up the theft of $230 million from the Russian Treasury in a corruption and tax fraud scheme by senior Putin officials uncovered by Magnitsky. He had alerted Magnitsky that much of the stolen money had found its way into Switzerland.
December 2012: A Russian-led coalition of nations that want to bring the global Internet under nation-by-nation control, and with it the ability to censor content, is beaten back by a U.S.-led coalition that advocates a free Internet at a conference of the International Telecommunication Union in Dubai.
December 14, 2012: Obama signs the Magnitsky Act, a law punishing Russian officials believed to be responsible for the death of Sergei Magnitsky by prohibiting them from entering the U.S. or using its banking system. The administration had quietly opposed the act, viewing it as congressional meddling in executive branch prerogatives and a further complication in already strained U.S.-Russian relations.
December 19, 2012: In retaliation for the Magnitsky Act, Russia bans the adoption of Russian children by Americans.
2013: The St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency (IRA), a Russian troll farm, is formed. Its initial task is to flood social media with articles and comments that portray Russia under Putin as stable and comfortable compared to a chaotic and morally corrupt West.
2013: Manafort reportedly has the first of three meetings with Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London where he has been holed up since 2012 to avoid extradition.
2013: Paul Erickson, a former American Conservative Union board member and Keene associate, meets Mariia Butina, a Torshin protégé.
2013: The FBI asks Steele to help it crack down on an international gambling and money laundering ring run by Russian organized crime boss Alimzhan Tokhathounov from Trump Tower. Tokhathounov had been indicted for conspiring to fix the ice-skating competition at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.
Early 2013: Fusion GPS is hired by the American law firm BakerHostetler to conduct a negative publicity campaign against William Browder, a civil rights activist and Putin foe who launched a global human-rights campaign after Magnitsky’s death. BakerHostetler represents Prevezon Holdings, a Russian company the Justice Department has accused of laundering dirty money through New York City real estate. Among Prevezon’s lawyers is Natalia Veselnitskaya, who is to meet with Donald Jr. and the Trump campaign brain trust in Trump Tower on June 9, 2016.
January~June 2013: Carter Page, a businessman and future Trump campaign aide, meets and gives documents relating to U.S. sanctions against Russia to Victor Podobnyy, who ostensibly is a diplomat working at Russia's U.N. mission in New York but actually an operative for the SVR, Russia's foreign intelligence service. In a U.S. intelligence intercept, Podobnyy calls Page an "idiot" who "wants to earn a lot of money."
February 2013: General Valery Gerasimov, chief of staff of Russian armed forces, publishes an article in an obscure Russian military journal stating that Russia must adopt a doctrine of "hybrid warfare" in an Internet world in which propagandists and hackers replace traditional weapons.
February 1, 2013: Clinton steps down as secretary of state. In a confidential exit memo to Obama, she essentially declares the "reset" dead and portrays Putin as a threat to the world order. McFaul, now U.S. ambassador to Russia follows up with a confidential cable to Clinton's successor, John Kerry, endorsing her stark assessment.
March 2013: The Bank of Cyprus, a haven for millions of dollars in Russian money, much of it laundered, teeters on the brink of insolvency. Following an international bailout, the bank appoints new officers, including vice chair Vladimir Strzhalkovsky, a former KGB agent and longtime Putin associate. Future Trump commerce secretary Wilbur Ross becomes the bank's major shareholder.
March 23, 2013: Boris Berezovsky, a Russian oligarch and Putin critic who was given political asylum in Britain in 2003, is found dead by a bodyguard, a ligature around his neck, in a bathroom in his Berkshire home. The death is made to look like a suicide but is suspected to be murder.
April 2013: Viktor Krapunov, a former Kazakh energy minister and mayor of Almaty who has had business dealings with Bayrock, creates three limited liability companies which buy three condos in Trump SoHo. Prosecutors allege the companies are used by Krapunov for his money-laundering network.
April 16, 2013: Federal agents raid several Trump Tower condos as part of a dragnet of 29 members of a global sports betting ring overseen by Tokhathounov. The entire 51st floor of Trump Tower was being used by the ring.
May 2013: Torshin attends the NRA national convention in Houston.
June 2013: Flynn visits Moscow at the invitation of Igor Sergun, the chief of GRU, Russia's military intelligence agency, reportedly becoming the first U.S. intelligence officer allowed inside the headquarters. Flynn meets with future Russian U.S. ambassador Sergey Kislyak for the first time. As DIA director, Flynn reportedly had become disillusioned because of what he believed was the Obama administration's focus on Russia and not ISIS as America's principal enemy.
June 15, 2013: Agalarov and pop star son Emin meet Trump in Las Vegas where the Trump-owned Miss USA Pageant is being held. A private dinner following the pageant is attended by Trump, Cohen, the Agalarovs and Ike Kaveladze, the U.S.-based vice president of Agalarov's Crocus International company and a known money launderer the U.S. government says moved more than $1.4 billion through more than 2,000 U.S. bank accounts who later meets with Donald Jr. and the Trump campaign brain trust in Trump Tower on June 9, 2016.
June 18, 2013: In separate tweets, Trump announces that the pageant will be broadcast live from Moscow in November and asks "Do you think Putin will be going . . . if so, will he become my new best friend?" He writes a follow-up letter to Putin inviting him to attend, scrawling a postscript that he looked forward to seeing "beautiful" women during his trip.
July 2013: The FBI and Spanish authorities exchange information about Torshin's mob activities.
July 11, 2018: Magnitsky is found guilty of tax evasion in a posthumous trial.
Summer 2013: Torshin is set to attend a birthday party on the Spanish island of Mallorca for Alexander Romanov, a Russian gangster in the Taganskaya mob that Spanish police say works for Torshin. Spanish police officers wait for Torshin at the airport and hotel where he would have stayed, ready to arrest him for money laundering, but a Russian prosecutor tips him off at the last minute and he does not show up.
July 8, 2013: Trump terminates a BBC interview when asked about Sater's mob ties.
August 25, 2013: Page brags in a letter sent to an academic press that was considering publishing a manuscript of his that he is an adviser to the Kremlin.
September 2013: Keene visits Moscow to speak on behalf of the NRA at a conference of The Right to Bear Arms group run by Butina.
September 4, 2013: James Comey succeeds Mueller as FBI director.
September 6, 2013: Trump tweets that "I am not angry at Russia (or China) because their leaders are far smarter than ours. We need real leadership, and fast, before it is too late."
September 10, 2013: New York U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara files a civil forfeiture action against Prevzon Holdings and other Russian companies with government ties allegedly involved in the corruption-tax fraud scheme uncovered by Magnitsky.
September 10, 2013: K.T. McFarland, a Fox News national security analyst who would become Trump's deputy national security adviser, publishes a commentary stating "Vladimir Putin is the one who really deserves that Nobel Peace Prize," referring to Russia's role in Syria at the time.
Fall of 2013: Cambridge Analytica is formed at a meeting at the Manhattan apartment of right-wing philanthropist Rebekah Mercer in which her father Robert Mercer, a hedge-fund billionaire and with Steve Bannon co-founder of Breitbart News, funds its creation with $10 million. Also present are Bannon and political data expert Robert Wylie.
October 13, 2013: David Letterman asks Trump on The Late Show if he has had any dealings with Russians. Trump answers, "Well, I've done a lot of business with Russians" and says he met Putin "once" although there is no record he ever had.
November 2013: Erickson asks the first of several potential investors for funding for what he calls "a new real estate venture" in a booming oil rich region of North Dakota. Daily Beast later reports that Erickson solicited investors at conservative political events and describes the venture as involving a company that appears to not have existed on land he did not own.
November 5, 2013: Trump denies knowing Sater in a deposition.
November 8~9, 2013: Trump hosts the Miss Universe Pageant in Moscow in return for a $20 million licensing fee from the Crocus Group, whose president is Agalarov and vice president is his son, Emin. Among the celebrity guests is Tokhtakhounov, who is a U.S. fugitive because of gambling ring charges. It is an open secret that Trump's true agenda is his desire to do business in Moscow and meet Putin, whom intermediaries contacted on Trump's behalf although they did not meet. Putin later denies that he knew Trump was in Moscow.
November 8, 2013: Following a morning meeting about the pageant in the Presidential Suite, Trump's hotel room at the Ritz-Carlton, someone offers to send five women to the hotel room, according to later testimony by Keith Schiller, Trump's longtime bodyguard. Steele states in his dossier that Trump consorted with prostitutes, while Schiller says the offer was turned down.
November 11, 2013: Trump tweets Aras Agalarov that "I had a great weekend with you and your family. You have done a FANTASTIC job. TRUMP TOWER-MOSCOW is next. EMIN was WOW!" Donald Jr. is put in charge as plans move forward for the project, and Ivanka Trump later scouts sites with Emin.
November 20, 2013: Emin Agaralov releases a music video starring Trump reprising his Apprentice television role.
Late November 2013: Trump, in an interview with a real estate trade paper about his trip to Russia, brags that "Almost all of the oligarchs were in the room" at a pageant after-party in a Moscow nightclub.
December 2013: Putin sends Agaralov's daughter, Sheyla, to deliver a personal note and gift -- a traditional Russian decorative lacquered box -- that Trump later describes as "a present, a beautiful present" to him at Trump Tower as a token of apology for their having been unable to meet when Trump was in Moscow for the pageant. The contents of the note have not been revealed.
December 2013: Torshin mob associate Romanov is arrested on and later convicted of money laundering on Mallorca. In telephone conversations monitored by Spanish authorities, he repeatedly refers to Torshin as "El Padrino," or godfather.
2014: U.S. intelligence agencies begin warning that Russia likely already had penetrated the American electrical grid with malware often called "BlackEnergy."
2014: Beginning in 2014 and continuing into 2016, the FBI and Justice Department unsuccessfully tried to turn Deripaska into an informant, The New York Times later reports. Agents signaled that they might provide help with his visa and legal problems in exchange for information on Russian organized crime and, later, on possible Russian aid to Trump’s 2016 campaign. The two attempts to flip Deripaska was part of a broader, clandestine American effort to gauge the possibility of gaining cooperation from roughly a half-dozen of Russia’s richest men, nearly all of whom, like Deripaska, depend on Putin to maintain their wealth. Two of the players in the effort were Ohr, the Justice Department official who in 2018 became a target of attacks by Trump, and Steele.
January 27, 2014: A telephone call between Victoria Nuland, assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, and Geoffrey Pyatt, U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, in which Nuland condemns the European Union (EU) for not doing more to end the mounting Ukraine crisis is intercepted by Russia and posted on YouTube and Twitter in an effort to show that the U.S. was meddling in Ukraine.
February 2014: An intelligence report drafted by the GRU documents how Russia can create fake personas through Facebook accounts to spread disinformation.
February 2014: Flynn speaks at a Cambridge University intelligence seminar attended by several Russians. He meets Svetlana Lokhova, a Russian-British postgraduate whom he invites to accompany him on a forthcoming trip to Moscow. He signs an email to her "General Misha," the Russian equivalent of Michael.
February 2014: Trump severs ties with political operative Sam Nunberg after he convinces him to participate in a BuzzFeed News article that is highly critical of a potential Trump presidential campaign.
Early February 2014: Kushner and wife Ivanka visit Russia where they attend a party with the wife of Roman Abramovich, a Russian oligarch and steel company owner with close ties to Putin.
February 22, 2014: Yanukovych flees Ukraine by helicopter with Putin's help amidst the Orange Revolution popular uprising. Russia responds with a tidal wave of propaganda spread on social media.
Late February 2014: A handwritten ledger left behind by Yanukovych shows $12.7 million in undisclosed cash payments to Davis Manafort Partners from the deposed president's political party.
March 2014: Firtash is arrested in Vienna by Austrian authorities for an alleged foreign bribery scheme involving the purchase of titanium in India.
March 17, 2014: The U.S., EU and Canada impose the first round of sanctions on Russia a few hours before Putin sends in troops and signs a decree recognizing Crimea as an independent state, laying the groundwork for its annexation to Russia in the first seizure of land from another nation in Europe since the end of World War II. The sanctions contribute to the collapse of the Russian ruble.
March 24, 2014: The non-Russian G8 member nations cancel the planned G8 summit to be held in June in the Russian city of Sochi and suspended Russia's membership of the group because of its annexation of Crimea.
Spring of 2014: Plans by Trump and the Agalarovs to build a Trump Tower in Moscow collapse because of U.S. Magnitsky Act sanctions on Russia and EU sanctions on Sberbank, which was to finance the project.
April 2014: Putin declares at a media forum that the CIA created the Internet to undermine the Russian government.
April 16, 2014: All Internet operators in Russia are required to install SORM black boxes so that the Kremlin can more extensively monitor Internet traffic, including intercepting messages and information from foreign providers.
April 28, 2014: The U.S. imposes a second round of sanctions. They include a ban on business transactions by seven Russian officials close to Putin and 17 Russian companies.
April 30, 2014: Flynn is forced out as head of the DIA after clashes over his leadership style and apparent Islamophobia.
May 2014: Steele sends Nuland the first of 120 reports on about political and diplomatic developments in Russia and Ukraine compiled by Orbis Business Intelligence, a British intelligence firm co-founded by the now former MI6 spy.
June 2014: The IRA begins field work in the U.S.
June 2014: The GRU penetrates the Ukrainian Central Election Commission network, destroying data and posting fake election results. Ukrainian election officials correct the results, but Russia's own television networks -- apparently unaware of the cyberattack -- announce the phony results.
Summer of 2014: Cambridge Analytica assigns dozens of non-U.S. citizens to provide campaign strategy and messaging advice to Republican candidates in the 2014 midterm elections even as an attorney for the firm warns warns that it is breaking U.S. laws limiting foreign involvement in elections.
July 17, 2014: The U.S. imposes a third round of sanctions as a result of mounting pro-Russian unrest in Ukraine. The business ban is extended to include two major Russian energy firms and two banks.
July 17, 2014: A Russian surface-to-air missile brings down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 over Ukraine, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew. Russia denies that it was responsible.
March 21, 2014: Trump tweets that "Putin has become a big hero in Russia with an all time high popularity. Obama, on the other hand, has fallen to his lowest ever numbers. Sad."
April 17, 2014: Trump tweets that Obama is a weakling compared to Putin. "America is at a great disadvantage. Putin is ex-KGB. Obama is a community organizer. Unfair."
September 3, 2014: At the invitation of Butina, Erickson speaks at a Right to Bear Arms meeting in Moscow. They later begin dating.
September 11, 2014: Twitter accounts tweet out fake news of a massive chemical plant explosion in St. Mary's Parish, Louisiana showing images of explosions, flames and smoke spewing from a chemical plant and screen shots of fake CNN and Wikipedia pages. The operation originates at the IRA and is designed to convince Americans that another 9/11 attack is at hand.
Fall of 2014: Russian government hackers gain access to and compromise the White House computer network, which has to be scrapped and replaced. Obama administration officials seek to downplay the intrusion. After an internal debate, the White House decides not to strike back in order to not to disturb the foundering "reset" initiative.
October 8, 2014: The DIA counsel's office tells Flynn he cannot receive foreign government payments without prior approval. He later receives at least one such payment from a Russian entity without DIA approval.
Early November 2014: Dutch intelligence provides U.S. authorities with evidence that Russians hacked into the Democratic National Committee's (DNC) computer system and that FSB hackers using the name "Cozy Bear" were preparing for an all-out attack on State Department computers. In addition to the hackers' computer system, the Dutch eventually also hack into the security camera system in the Moscow building used by the hackers so they can see who is going in and out of it in real time. U.S. official take little action.
November 21, 2014: Steele meets with Ohr in Washington and they begin discussions on how to cultivate Deripaska.
November 23, 2014~March 3, 2015: Trump sends nine tweets to two now deleted Russian Twitter accounts about planning to run for president.
December 8, 2014: Scot Young falls from the fourth floor of a London apartment and impales himself on a railing. Police rule the death a suicide after a cursory investigation, but others believe Russia was involved because of Young's business contacts with enemies of Putin.
2015: The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Court approves a warrant for the FBI to wiretap Manafort.
2015: Manafort reportedly has the second of three meetings with Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy.
2015: Israeli government hackers see hacking tools in the computers of Kaspersky Lab, a global anti-virus firm, that could only have come from the NSA. A subsequent NSA investigation finds the tools were in the possession of the Russian government.
2015: A pattern emerges beginning with the 2015-16 election cycle of emigrees from the Soviet Union and Russia making millions of dollars in contributions to the Trump campaign and Republican politicians after becoming American citizens, thereby circumventing a ban on foreigners contributing directly to U.S. political campaigns. Several such U.S. citizens have associations with Deripaska and Viktor Vekselberg, a billionaire who is one of the 10 richest Russians.
2015: A Los Angeles County judge finds Erickson committed fraud in connection with the North Dakota oil-investment deal and awarded damages totaling more than $460,000 to an investor.
January 2015: Putin names Torshin deputy governor of the powerful Central Bank of Russia. Torshin names Butina as his "personal executive assistant."
January 15, 2015: The U.S. charges Podobnyy and two other Russian operatives for acting as unregistered agents as part of a spy ring aimed at seeking information on U.S. sanctions. Evgeny Buryakov, who had been posing as a Russian banker, is charged and eventually sentenced to 30 months in prison. Prosecutors include the Russian intelligence effort to recruit Page as part of the government's evidence.
February 2015: Trump rehires Nunberg as a communications adviser.
February 16, 2015: The last episode of The Apprentice starring Trump airs.
February 27, 2015: Boris Nemtsov, the leading anti-Putin democracy advocate, is fatally shot four times in the back as he walks on a bridge near the Kremlin. Putin blames pro-Western Ukrainian oligarchs.
March 2015: Clinton's use of a private email server while secretary of state is made public. She states she has turned over work-related emails to the government but that 30,000 or so personal emails on the server were deleted. The FBI begins an investigation.
March 6, 2015: The Trump Taj Mahal is fined $10 million -- the highest fine ever levied by the federal government against a casino -- after admitting to having willfully violated anti-money laundering regulations for years. Ivankov is identified as one of the Russian mobsters who routinely laundered large sums of money there.
March 18, 2015: Trump launches an exploratory committee for a presidential run.
Spring 2015: IRA staffers conduct an experiment to see if they can successfully organize a live event in the U.S. from behind their computer screens in St. Petersburg by targeting New Yorkers on Facebook and attempting to lure them to an event where they would receive a free hot dog. There were no actual hot dogs, but enough people show up at the event to make the agency deem the experiment a success.
April 2015: Flynn begins advising two Washington-based companies pursuing efforts to build nuclear power plants in the Middle East in conjunction with a joint U.S.-Russia-Saudi Arabian business venture.
April 8, 2015: Russian government hacker "Fancy Bear," later identified as one of the DNC computer server hackers, overrides the programming of the French television network TV5Monde's 11 channels.
April 12, 2015: Clinton announces her candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination.
May 2015: Emin Agalarov and Rob Goldstone, Emin's publicist, are guests of Trump at Trump Tower. Goldstone suggests that Trump meet with Putin.
May 2015: Ukrainians complain to Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg that Russian trolls are blocking anti-Russian Ukrainian accounts. Facebook takes no action.
May 26, 2015: Russian opposition politician and outspoken Putin foe Vladimir Kara-Murza suddenly takes ill during a meeting in Moscow. He suffers multiple organ failure and is diagnosed as having been poisoned. He eventually recovers.
Summer of 2015: Flynn makes several trips to the Middle East as an adviser on the Middle East nuclear power plant project.
Summer of 2015: Facebook begins inadvertently selling about $100,000 in election-related ads to a shadowy Russian "troll farm" with a history of pushing pro-Kremlin propaganda, while hackers create false Facebook and Twitter accounts in their effort to discredit Clinton.
June 16, 2015: Trump announces his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination. He initiates a pattern of lying by declaring that "thousands" had turned out for his announcement, although there were only several hundred and some were hired movie extras.
June 18, 2015: Trump boasts in an interview with Sean Hannity on Fox News of his many Russian relationships, including Putin.
June 29, 2015: Trump boasts of his closeness with Russians in a speech to the Club of Chicago.
July 2015: The GRU gains access to DNC computer servers. Some 130 party workers, Clinton campaign staffers and party supporters eventually are targeted.
July 2015: The State Department inspector general alerts the FBI's counterintelligence office that classified information was being stored on Clinton's private server. Among those involved in the FBI investigation is a senior agent named Peter Strzok.
August 2015: Trump and Flynn meet for the first time in New York. He begins to work as an informal foreign policy adviser, an arrangement that is later formalized.
August 2015: Nunberg is fired from the campaign over racially charged Facebook posts.
August 21, 2015: Senator Jeff Sessions, who will become a major player in the campaign, appears with Trump at a rally in Alabama.
September 2015: FBI Special Agent Adrian Hawkins calls the DNC to warn that its computer network had been hacked by "the Dukes," a cyber espionage team linked to the GRU. Yared Tamene, a mid-level computer network administrator, does not take the call seriously, and there follows a series of botched communications and misunderstandings between the bureau and DNC over the next five months.
September 2015: Attorney General Loretta Lynch reportedly tells Comey as he prepares to testify to Congress to refer to the Clinton email investigation as a "matter," not an investigation.
September 2015: The FBI and Justice Department make the first of two unsuccessful efforts to flip Deripaska.
September 2015: The Washington Free Beacon, a conservative website funded by anti-Trump donor Paul Singer, hires Fusion GPS to compile an opposition research dossier on Trump as the Republican presidential primary campaign heats up. Simpson codenames the commission "Bangor."
September 21, 2015: Trump boasts on the Hugh Hewitt radio show that he was "with [Russian] oligarchs and generals."
October 11, 2015: Speaking on Face the Nation, Trump brags about sharing air time with Putin on 60 Minutes although they were on separate continents. Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, Trump says there isn't enough proof to blame Russian separatists for shooting down Malaysian Airlines Flight 17.
October 28, 2015: Trump and Sater pursue a new plan to build a massive Trump Tower hotel-spa in Moscow. Trump is to be paid a $4 million fee and no upfront costs, a percentage of sales and an opportunity to name the project for daughter Ivanka. Sater boasts in an email to Cohen that as part of the deal, he can get Trump elected with Russian help. Cohen negotiates the deal at the same time he is a campaign spokesman and Trump is repeatedly stating he has nothing to do with Russia.
November 2015: Cohen is contacted by a "Russian national" seeking "political synergy" with the Trump campaign who offers to set up a meeting between Trump and Putin, according to legal documents filed in December 2018. The national is believed to be Dmitry Klokov, an Olympic weightlifting medalist and former weightlifting world champion.
November 5, 2015: Mikhail Lesin, a former top Putin media adviser, is found dead in his Washington hotel room with blunt-force injuries to the head, neck and torso. He was scheduled to meet with Justice Department officials the next day.
November 10, 2015: Trump states during a Republican presidential debate that "I got to know [Putin] very well."
December 2, 2015: Flynn and his son, Michael Flynn, Jr., meet with Kislyak at his Washington, D.C. residence. Flynn's son describes the meeting as "very productive" in an email to the Russian embassy.
Late 2015: Britain's GCHQ, equivalent to the U.S.'s NSA, first becomes aware through electronic intelligence of suspicious interactions between individuals connected to Trump and Russian agents. The intelligence is passed on to the U.S. as part of a routine exchange of information. Subsequently, Germany, Estonia, Poland, the Netherlands and France pass on corroborating intelligence.
December 8~13, 2015: A delegation of NRA executives meets in Moscow with Dmitry Rogozin, a hardline Putin deputy, head of Russia's defense industry, longtime opponent of American power and subject of U.S. sanctions.
December 10-12, 2015: Flynn is paid $45,000 by RT for a three-day Moscow trip in which he gives a speech criticizing Obama's Russia policy and sits at Putin's table at a banquet. Jill Stein, the 2016 Green Party presidential candidate, also is seated at the table, while Assange speaks by satellite hookup.
December 16, 2015: CIA Director John Brennan writes an internal memo stating that some members of Congress don't "understand the importance and gravity" of Russian election interference.
December 17, 2015: Putin praises Trump and Trump quickly returns the favor, saying "It's always a great honor to be so nicely complimented by a man so highly respected in his own country and beyond."
December 18, 2015: Trump tells MSNBC News that he has never seen proof of Putin killing journalists. "He's running a country, and at least he's a leader, unlike what we have in this country. I think our country does plenty of killing also."
December 20, 2015: Trump tweets that "If Putin respects me and Putin wants to call me brilliant and other things that he said that were frankly very nice, I'll accept that, and I'll accept it on behalf of the country."
December 22, 2015: Obama further toughens sanctions to include 34 more individuals and legal entities because of Russian military aggression in Crimea and Eastern Ukraine.
Mid-January 2016: With the Trump Tower Moscow deal foundering, Cohen emails Dmitry Peskov, Putin's top press aide, for his help.
Early 2016: Kushner and his felon father, Charles, give up on a two-year effort to obtain a half-billion dollar business bailout from Qatar to refinance a troubled property at 666 Fifth Avenue in New York.
February 2016: Steele sends Nuland a last Orbis report.
February 2016: Trump, concerned that he could win the primaries but lose the nomination because of establishment Republicans manipulating party rules, consults Stone, who recommends that he hire Manafort. Real estate developer Thomas Barrick, a longtime Trump friend, also recommends Manafort. There is speculation that in Stone's case, his recommendation of Manafort was based on his knowledge that Russia wanted to assist the campaign.
February 1, 2016: Andrew McCabe is promoted to the position of FBI deputy director. He assumes responsibility for the Clinton email server investigation.
February 10, 2016: IRA social media specialists are given instructions to "use any opportunity to criticize Hillary and the rest (except Sanders and Trump -- we support them)."
February 10, 2016: Erickson, now a Republican operative, starts a company, Bridges LLC, with Torshin assistant Butina. Erickson claims the LLC is for Butina's graduate school tuition.
February 11, 2016: Flynn meets with investigators in a routine meeting to discuss his application to renew his security clearance. When asked about his Moscow trip, he reportedly says, "I didn't take any money from Russia, if that's what you're asking me."
February 14, 2016: Torshin tweets that Butina is now in the U.S. and says "She writes me that D. Trump (NRA member) is ready for cooperation with Russia."
February 29, 2016: Manafort, in a five-page proposal to Trump about his expertise in obtaining nominating convention delegates, boasts of how he has assisted political leaders, including Russian oligarchs and dictators. Although he has substantial and mounting financial problems, he offers to work without pay.
March 2016: Manafort reportedly has the third of three meetings with Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy.
March 2016: The Russian Institute for Strategic Studies (RISS), a Moscow-based government think tank controlled by Putin, develops a plan to swing the election to Trump and undermine voters' faith in the American electoral system.
March 2016: Gates, now working for the Trump campaign, requests proposals from an Israeli company to create fake online identities, to use social media manipulation and to gather intelligence to help defeat Republican primary race opponents and Clinton, according to a report published in October 2018 by The New York Times. There is no evidence that the campaign acted on the proposals.
March 2016: Trump names Page as an adviser.
March 2016: The FBI interviews Page about his Russian contacts.
March 2016: After repelling incursions for several weeks, the Clinton campaign computer network in Brooklyn finally is breached and Russians begin stealing the emails of Clinton campaign officials.
March 2016: Tamene finally meets with FBI agents and is convinced Hawkins is, in fact, an agent. But because the FBI's internal deliberations are so slow, by the time he provides an IP address the Russians had switched to another.
March 2016: The first wave of fake news stories targeting Clinton voters in swing states is detected. The source is believed to be Eastern European hackers directed by the Russian government.
Early March 2016: George Papadopoulos is recruited for the Trump campaign's foreign policy team.
Early March 2016: Papadopoulos reportedly strikes up a friendship with Millian.
Early March 2016: An FBI source provides an intercept of what is described as a Russian intelligence document claiming Lynch had privately assured someone in the Clinton campaign that the email investigation would not push too deeply into the matter. The document is believed to be a fake by many people at the bureau, but Comey worries that it ever surfaces many people might believe the FBI's investigation was fixed.
March 4, 2016: Strzok texts FBI attorney Lisa Page, with whom he is having an extramarital affair. He calls Trump "an idiot" and says that Clinton should win "100,000,000-0."
March 15, 2016: Veteran hacker Ivan Yermakov, a Russian military intelligence officer working for a secret outfit called Unit 26165, begins probing the DNC computer network .
March 19, 2016: John Podesta, chairman of Clinton's presidential campaign, is emailed a link asking that he change his password. A Clinton campaign staffer tells him the request is legitimate, but it turns out to be the way that GRU cyberoperative Aleksey Lukashev gains access to his email account.
March 19, 2016: Reza Zarrab, a Turkish-Iranian gold trader, is arrested when he lands in Miami and held on charges he masterminded a huge operation to help the Iranian government evade U.S. economic sanctions by shipping gold to Iran from Turkey in exchange for Iranian oil and gas. Flynn later allegedly becomes involved in a plot to gain his release.
March 21, 2016: Trump introduces his campaign foreign policy team to the press. It includes Papadopoulos and Page, who is described as the campaign's Russia expert.
March 22, 2016: Bill Rinehart, a former DNC employee working for the Clinton campaign, receives what he thinks is a legitimate email telling him to change his password, giving Russian hackers further access to the campaign.
March 24, 2016: Papadopoulos meets in London with Joseph Mifsud, a Maltese professor with Kremlin ties. The professor introduces him to the Russian ambassador and a woman he describes as Putin's niece, later identified to be Olga Vinogradova, who is not related to Putin. Mifsud also connects Papadopoulos to Ivan Timofeev, a program director for the Valdai Discussion Club, a prestigious gathering of academics that meet with Putin, and an intermediary for the Foreign Ministry. Papadopoulos subsequently emails then-campaign chairman Corey Lewandowski and Sam Clovis, Trump's national campaign co-chairman, among other campaign officials, about how Putin wants to meet with the Trump team.
March 26, 2016: Manafort, on the recommendation of Stone and Tom Barrack, a Trump friend and later chairman of Trump's Inaugural Committee, is hired by the Trump campaign. It is later revealed that he had taken at least 14 trips to Moscow, several with Kilimnik on Deripaska's private jet, and met with Deripaska and the oligarch's associates on several occasions.
March 31, 2016: Trump is present at a meeting in the Old Post Office Building in Washington, then under construction to become the new Trump International Hotel, with campaign foreign policy advisers. Papadopoulos says he has connections with a Russian, an apparent reference to Timofeev, who can help arrange a meeting between Trump and Putin. Trump expresses interest in the idea. Sessions later testifies that he opposed the idea, but others say he expressed no opposition to the idea.
Spring of 2016: Stone reportedly has a phone conversation with Assange in which he learns that WikiLeaks had obtained the emails of Clinton, Podesta and other ranking Democrats. There is speculation that Stone knew of the contents of some of those emails and was planning what to do with them.
April 2016: U.S. intelligence intercepts the first communications among Russians who discuss trying to influence the presidential election by sabotaging Clinton.
April 2016: Manafort joins the Trump campaign as an adviser.
April 2016: Manafort meets in New York with Kilimnik.
April 2016: Manafort instructs campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks to disregard a request from The Washington Post for information about Manafort's relationship with Deripaska.
April 2016: Steele concludes a secret investigation for a private client which he called Project Charlemagne. It involved a survey of Russian aggressive interference in the politics of four EU members -- France, Germany, Italy and the U.K., along with Turkey, a candidate for EU membership -- through social media "warfare" and financial support for favored politicians in the form of bank loans and gifts.
April 2016: With Trump increasingly certain to clinch the nomination, The Washington Free Beacon decides to terminate its Fusion GPS contract. Simpson, hoping to keep alive the work done by Fusion GPS on "Bangor," approaches Marc Elias, chief counsel for the Clinton campaign. Elias's law firm, Perkins Coie, strikes a deal with Simpson to do Trump opposition research on behalf of the campaign and DNC.
April 2016: Butina meets with pro-Russia U.S. Representative Dana Rohrabacher, who is visiting Russia.
April 2016: Russia gives 10-year extensions to the first of six unused Trump trademarks. The other five are later also given extensions.
April 3, 2016: The so-called Panama Papers are leaked. They reveal a money trail allegedly showing a network of secret offshore deals and vast loans worth $2 billion leading to Putin and his associates. WikiLeaks begins a protracted and vicious Twitter attack on the papers in defense of Putin.
April 6, 2016: The GRU creates an email identity for a fake Clinton campaign team member to spearphish the campaign.
April 7, 2018: Lewandowski later asserts that Manafort effectively was in control of the campaign from April 7 onward. The reason that date is significant is unclear.
April 11, 2016: In a series of emails between Manafort and Kilimnik, they discuss whether Deripaska has seen news coverage of Manafort joining the campaign.
April 12, 2016: The GRU uses the stolen identity of a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) member to access the organization.
April 18, 2016: Mifsud introduces Papadopoulos by email to an unidentified individual with connections to the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. They have multiple conversations on Skype about a possible meeting between campaign officials and Russians.
April 26, 2016: Papadopoulos has breakfast in London with Mifsud, who says he has just returned from meetings in Moscow with Russian officials who claim to have "dirt" on Clinton and "thousands" of her emails.
April 27, 2016: Kushner, accompanied by Flynn, meets with Kislyak at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. Trump and Sessions also are present.
April 27, 2016: Trump gives his first major foreign policy speech. He states that it is possible to improve relations with Russia. Papadopoulos edits the outline of the speech and tells Timofeev that it should be taken as "the signal [for Trump and Putin] to meet."
Late April 2016: The DNC's IT department notices suspicious computer activity and hires private security firm CrowdStrike to investigate.
May 2016: CrowdStrike and intelligence agencies confirm that highly sophisticated Russian intelligence-affiliated adversaries are responsible for the DNC hacks. Russian cyber espionage units are given "bear" appellations by U.S. intelligence. Identified as being responsible for the hacks are the FSB's "Cozy Bear," linked to previous White House and State Department cyberattacks, and a competing group, "Fancy Bear," affiliated with the GRU, and linked to numerous attacks on business, media and government targets since 2000. Among the stolen material is the DNC's entire opposition research file on Trump. Despite CrowdStrike's efforts, Russian malware remains on the DNC's computers until October 2016.
May 2016: Torshin proposes a meeting between Putin and Trump in an email to Kushner. Kushner reportedly tells intermediaries, including Rick Dearborn, chief of staff for Trump campaign adviser Sessions, to reject the offer. The proposal may have originated with an email from Erickson.
May 2016: Papadopoulos, in the course of a night of heavy drinking at the Kensington Wine Rooms in London with Alexander Downer, Australia's High Commissioner to Great Britain, confides that Russia has political dirt on Clinton in the form of emails. Downer later passes on the information to Australian intelligence officials, who after about two months inform the FBI.
May~September 2016: Two servers owned by Alfa Bank, one of the largest banks in Russia, look up the address of a Trump server nearly every day, a total of more than than 2,000 times between May and September, leading investigators to later surmise there may have been a covert communication channel between the Trump campaign and Russians involved in election meddling.
May 13, 2016: The GRU deletes files from a DNC computer.
May 21, 2016: Papadopoulos tells a high-ranking campaign official, possibly Lewandowski, that "Russia has been eager to meet Mr. Trump for quite some time and have been reaching out to me to discuss." He continues to email campaign officials about setting up a meeting. Manafort replies to one such email, writing Trump "is not doing these trips . . . It should be someone low level in the campaign as as to not send any signal."
May 26, 2016: Torshin, who is seeking to meet with a high-level campaign official to further a meeting between Putin and Trump, is seated with Donald Jr. during a private dinner during the NRA annual meeting in Louisville, Kentucky.
Late May 2016: Michael Caputo, a Trump campaign communications adviser, sets up a meeting between Stone and Russian national Henry Greenberg, a one-time FBI informant. They meet at a Sunny Isles, Florida restaurant where Greenberg reportedly offers the campaign damaging information about Clinton for $2 million. "You don’t understand Donald Trump. He doesn't pay for anything."
June 2016: The RISS circulates a policy memo elaborating on election interference efforts.
June 2016: The primaries over, Russian-Macedonian hackers posing as Americans begin a fake news campaign to energize disappointed Bernie Sanders supporters by targeting them with fake news stories stating that, among other things, Hillary Clinton murdered former Bill Clinton aide Vince Foster.
June 2016: Kushner takes over all Trump campaign digital efforts.
June 2016: The GRU ends its 11-month-long access of DNC computer servers.
Early June 2016: The CIA concludes in an internal report that Russia is actively engaged in interfering in the presidential election, including the goal of getting Trump elected by sabotaging the Clinton campaign in an act of revenge for what Putin believed was Clinton's role in 2011 antiPutin protests.
Early June 2016: Cambridge Analytica contacts WikiLeaks in the hopes of obtaining Clinton-related emails.
June 2, 2016: Clinton gives her first major speech on national security in San Diego and repeatedly calls into question Trump's affection for Putin and his "bizarre fascination with dictators and strongmen who have no love for America."
June 3, 2016: Goldstone, representing Emin Agaralov, emails Donald Jr. that he had met with "his father Aras this morning and . . . [he] offered to provide the Trump campaign with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary . . . and would be very useful to your father." Donald Jr. replies "if it's what you say I love it."
June 6, 2016: Trump reportedly speaks by phone with Emin Agalarov.
June 7, 2016: Trump promises "big news" on Clinton's "crimes" in a forthcoming "major speech."
June 7, 2016: In the most series example of Russian harassment of U.S. officials in Moscow since McFaul became ambassador, a CIA officer is accosted and wrestled to the ground by a Russian intelligence agent as he tries to enter a gate to the U.S. embassy. The CIA agent beats back his attacker.
June 8, 2016: Donald Jr. sends the Goldstone email chain to Manafort and Kushner so they can be present. He uses the subject heading "Russia--Clinton--private and confidential."
June 9, 2016: As a result of the email exchange with Goldstone, Donald Jr. arranges a meeting of the Trump campaign brain trust at Trump Tower with Goldstone, Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskata and Russian-American lobbyist Akhmetshin, who both have Russian intelligence agency ties. Veselnitskaya's translator, Anatoli Samochornov, also attends. It is later revealed that Veselnitskaya was not acting as a private lawyer, as she claimed, and her actions were coordinated at the highest levels of the Kremlin. Also attending are Kushner, Manafort, Kaveladze and translator Anatoli Samochornov. The dirt on Clinton is believed to be the fact that two of the three billionaire Ziff brothers contributed to her campaign and their investment company is accused of evading tens of millions of dollars of Russian taxes. The source of the dirt is believed to be Yuri Y. Chaika, Russia's prosecutor general, with whom Veselnitskaya had a close working relationship. The Russians later claim that the subject of the meeting was lifting a Russian ban on Americans adopting Russian children in retaliation for the Magnitsky Act should Trump be elected.
June 10, 2016: The DNC staff is informed by CEO Lindsey Reynolds that everyone is required to turn in their laptops and other devices, but not why. Alexandra Chalupa, a DNC consultant tracking Manafort, deduces that the computer system is being purged because of a breech by Russians.
June 12, 2016: Assange states in an interview that WikiLeaks "has a very big year ahead" and promises the imminent release of emails "related to Hillary Clinton."
June 13, 2016: Trump does not give the promised "major speech," ostensibly because of a mass shooting at an Orlando nightclub. The speech is not rescheduled, possibly because the "dirt" delivered by Veselnitskaya was disappointing.
June 14, 2016: Hackers have gained access to DNC servers, Washington Post reporter Ellen Nakashima writes in the first public disclosure of the security breach. It incorrectly reports that no important information was stolen and that the breech was "traditional espionage," an incorrect assessment with which the Obama administration initially agrees.
June 15, 2016: A hacker with the online persona "Guccifer 2.0" appears for the first time, claiming credit for the DNC hack and begins posting DNC documents on the "Guccifer 2.0" website. He is later identified as a GRU officer working out of a Moscow office.
June 15, 2016: The Trump campaign responds to the DNC hack by saying it is a DNC hoax. In the first example of what becomes on oft-repeated response, the campaign and Trump himself refuse to acknowledge Russian interference.
June 15, 2016: House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy tells fellow Republican leaders that "There's two people I think Putin pays: [Dana] Rohrabacher and Trump." House Speaker Paul Ryan immediately interjects and swears those present to secrecy.
Mid-June 2016: The Trump hotel-spa project in Moscow is abruptly canceled in the wake of The Washington Post story on hackers.
June 20, 2016: Manafort replaces Lewandowksi as campaign manager. Gates is named a deputy campaign manager.
June 20, 2016: Steele delivers the first of approximately 20 memos to Simpson at Fusion GPS that are to make up his dossier. Based on information from his confidential sources, Steele concludes that Moscow has been "cultivating, supporting and assisting" Trump for years and has compromising information on him that could be used as blackmail, and that Trump and his inner circle "have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals" based on compromising material on Clinton collated by Russian intelligence services over many years. Steele states that a source who allegedly was present says that Trump had employed "a number of prostitutes to perform a 'golden showers' (urination) show in front of him" during his November 2013 stay at the Ritz-Carlton in Moscow as a way of defiling the bed in which Barack and Michelle Obama had stayed. Millian is reportedly a source for that story. Steele identifies "Source A" as "a senior Russian Foreign Ministry figure," "Source B" as "a former top level intelligence officer still active in the Kremlin," and "Source E" as "an ethnic Russian" and "close associate of Republican US presidential candidate Donald Trump."
Summer of 2016: Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook, who has belatedly learned of the DNC hack and theft of Clinton emails, proposes a "honeypot" operation to Elias. The Clinton team will plant phony information within the DNC computer system and see if the Trump campaign picks up and uses it. The idea is abandoned as being impractical and the possibility it could blow back on Clinton.
June 22, 2016: WikiLeaks, in its first known involvement in the Russian effort, sends a private message to "Guccifer 2.0" to "send any new material here for us to review and it will have a much higher impact than what you are doing."
June 22, 2016: Trump, speaking in New York, excoriates Clinton for her handling of the Benghazi attacks and warns that emails she deleted from her private server could make her vulnerable to "blackmail" from unspecified countries hostile to the U.S.
June 23, 2016: Kushner hires Cambridge Analytica for $6 million and builds a secret 100-person operation in San Antonio that it shares with the data mining firm, which collects and uses social media information to influence voters, and possibly did so in coordination with Russian interference efforts.
June 24, 2016: Trump reportedly meets with representatives of Cambridge Analytica at his golf course in Aberdeen, Scotland.
June 27, 2016: Trump, replying to a news conference question about his dealing with Russia, says "What do I have to do with Russia? You know the closest I came to Russia, I bought a house a number of years ago in Palm Beach, Florida . . . for $40 million and I sold it to a Russian for $100 million including brokerage commissions."
Late June 2016: Russian-American businessman and former oil executive Simon Kukes makes the first of several contributions totaling $273,000 to the Trump campaign.
July 2016: Russia escalates a campaign of harassment of American diplomats and intelligence operatives in Russia.
July 2016: The Trump campaign makes use of audience lists created by Cambridge Analytica to target a portion of its so-called "dark ads" on Facebook from July 2016 to the inauguration in January 2017, Daily Beast reports in December 2018.
Early July 2016: Comey convenes a team of advisers to begin mapping out an investigation into possible Russian election interference. In addition to Comey, members include McCabe, counterintelligence chief Bill Priestap, general counsel James Baker, Comey chief of staff James Rybicki, and Lisa Page and Strzok. It is nicknamed "the skinny group" because its membership is so slender.
Early July 2016: Kukes, who is in frequent contact with Vyacheslav Pavlovsky, a career Kremlin official and former ambassador to Norway, boasts in an email that "I am actively involved in Trump's election campaign, and am part of the group on strategy development."
July 2, 2016: Clinton spends three and a half hours answering questions from FBI agents about her emails.
July 5, 2016: Comey rebukes Clinton for being "extremely careless," but recommends no criminal charges in connection with her handling of classified information as secretary of state, including emails on a private server, ostensibly lifting a cloud from her presidential campaign. Less noticed is that Comey apparently alludes to Russia in stating that because Clinton used her email extensively while traveling overseas, "we assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton's personal email account."
July 5, 2016: Steele meets at his London office with FBI agent Michael Gaeta, who is stationed in Rome, and shares his June 20 memo. He tells Steele that he will report its contents to Washington.
July 6, 2016: Additional hacked DNC documents appears on the "Guccifer 2.0" website.
July 6~8, 2016: Page visits Moscow, where he gives a pro-Russian speech at a university graduation. He insists he was traveling as a private person, but reportedly meets twice with former spy and close Putin aide Igor Sechin, chairman of Russian government-owned energy giant Rosneft, with Igor Diveykin, a senior Putin administration official, and with Andrei Baranov, head of investor relations at Rosneft. Steele later states in a dossier memo that Sechin tells Page that if a future Trump administration dropped sanctions, there could be an associated move to offer lucrative contracts to U.S. energy firms. Diveykin, according to the dossier, told Page that the Russians had compromising material on Clinton and on Trump, which he said Trump needed to keep in mind in his dealings with Russia. Page later acknowledges that he and Baranov discussed sanctions.
July 7, 2016: In an email reportedly sent to Kilimnik, Manafort offers to provide briefings on the presidential race to Deripaska.
July 8, 2016: Page, in an email from Moscow to members of the Trump campaign, says that he had received "incredible insights and outreach" from senior members of Putin's administration.
July 10, 2016: DNC staffer Seth Rich is shot to death in what Washington, D.C. police describe as an attempted armed robbery.
July 13, 2016: Trump sues Nunberg for $10 million, alleging he breached a confidentiality agreement.
July 14, 2016: Additional hacked DNC documents appear on the "Guccifer 2.0" website.
Mid-July 2016: Working behind the scenes, the Trump campaign dramatically waters down the Republican National Convention platform on Ukraine, ostensibly in a nod to Putin. The original platform draft states that sanctions should be toughened because of its annexation of Crimea and aid should be increased to the "embattled" Ukrainian army, but both provisions are removed and replaced with a vague assurance of "appropriate assistance." Kilimnik later brags to friends in Kiev that he was involved in the effort.
July 18~21, 2018: The Republican National Convention is held in Cleveland. Three Trump national security advisers -- Page, J.D. Gordon and Walid Phares -- meet with Kislyak during the convention.
July 19, 2016: Trump is nominated for president at the convention after he, Flynn and other surrogates declare, in what becomes an oft-repeated campaign theme, that Clinton should be jailed for her use of the private email server. He chooses Mike Pence as his vice presidential running mate.
July 19, 2016: Trump is warned by senior FBI officials that foreign adversaries, including Russia, would probably try to spy on and infiltrate his campaign. Clinton is given a similar warning.
July 19, 2016: Steele subits a memo to Fusion GPS regarding Page's meetings earlier in the month with Sechin and Diveykin.
July 19, 2016: The debt load on Trump's businesses has almost doubled from $350 million to $630 million over the past year, reports Bloomberg News.
July 20, 2016: New Yorker reporter Ryan Lizza asks Clovis about allegations the campaign worked with the Republican Party to soften the party's Russian convention platform. Clovis responds, "I can't talk about [it]."
July 22, 2016: Guccifer 2.0 passes the entire archive of 44,000 DNC emails to WikiLeaks. It initially publishes 19,252 of them, and Assange tweets "Are you ready for Hillary?"
July 24, 2016: Donald Jr. tells CNN's Jake Tapper that the Clinton campaign's suggestion that Russia was trying to interfere in the election on behalf of his father is "disgusting" and "phony."
July 24, 2016: Manafort appears on ABC's "This Week" and says there are no campaign-Russia connections. "That's absurd. And you know, there's no basis to it."
July 24, 2016: DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz resigns amid the fallout from the hacked emails, becoming the first direct victim of the Russian interference campaign.
July 25~28, 2016: The Democratic National Convention is held in Philadelphia. Sanders supporters are furious because some of the hacked emails show DNC efforts to undermine the Vermont senator during the primaries. Clinton campaign staffers Jennifer Palmieri and Jake Sullivan fail to interest journalists in emerging links between Russia and campaign interference.
July 25, 2015: Stone emails associate Jerome Corsi and instructs him to "get to" Assange in the "Ecuadorian Embassy in London and get the pending [WikiLeaks] emails.
July 25, 2016: Trump tweets that "The new joke in town is that Russia leaked the disastrous DNC emails, which should have never been written (stupid), because Putin likes me. . . . Leaked e-mails of DNC show plans to destroy Bernie Sanders."
July 26, 2016: U.S. intelligence officials inform the White House that they have "high confidence" that Russia was behind the DNC hacks.
July 26, 2016: Steele describes a large Russian hacking operation in a memo.
July 26, 2016: Clinton is nominated for president.
July 27, 2016: Trump tells a Miami CBS affiliate regarding allegations that Russia is trying to help him win the election, "I can tell you I think if I came up with that they'd say, 'Oh, it's a conspiracy theory, it's ridiculous" . . . I mean I have nothing to do with Russia. I don’t have any jobs in Russia. I'm all over the world but we're not involved in Russia."
July 27, 2016: Trump calls on Russia to hack 30,000 so-called "missing" Clinton emails. Later in the day, the GRU makes its first effort to break into the servers used by Clinton's personal office.
July 27, 2016: Manafort denies any relationship with Russians and says it's "absurd" to suggest Russia was working on behalf of the Trump campaign.
July 29, 2016: Strzok initiates an FBI investigation into possible Russia-Trump campaign ties. He dubs it
"Crossfire Hurricane." Its existence is kept secret even from high ranking members of Congress colloquially known as the Gang of Eight, who by law are to be briefed on important intelligence matters.
July 30 2016: Steele reports in a memo that the Russians are uneasy about their U.S. election operation.
July 30, 2016: Steele tells Ohr, a friend and senior Justice Department lawyer, that Russian intelligence believes it has Trump "over a barrel."
July 31, 2016: Stone emails Corsi and tells him that he should dispatch Ted Malloch, a British citizen who has claimed he represents Trump, to visit Assange.
Late July 2016: The FBI obtains and later renews a FISA Court warrant allowing it to monitor Page.
Late July 2016: Strzok and another FBI agent interview Downer in London.
Late July 2016: Steele states in a memo that his Source E reports that a "conspiracy of cooperation" between the campaign and Russia is "well-developed." Source E states that this is "managed on the Trump side by . . . Manafort," who is using Page and others as intermediaries. The source claims that there had been a "regular exchange" of information between Trump and the Kremlin "for at least 8 years."
Late July~Early August 2016: The CIA informs the White House of Putin's plans to interfere in the election. Obama orders an interagency group to assess CIA and FBI intelligence. National security adviser Susan Rice heads the group, which includes Brennan, Clapper, Comey, Kerry, Lynch, Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson. Intelligence at this point is unclear on what Russia's primary aim may be, and three scenarios are considered: Sowing discord to delegitimize the election, hurt Clinton or help Trump. Largely overlooked is the significant role social media is playing in the Russian effort. Rice, her assistant Avril Haines and Lisa Monaco, a deputy to Johnson, argue that while pushing back against the Russians is important, insuring that the electoral process is secure is the top priority. For the next five months, the administration secretly debates dozens of options on how to retaliate, including whether to use CIA-gathered material that would be embarrassing to Putin and cyberattacks on Russian infrastructure and sanctions that could devastate the Russian economy.
Early August 2016: Two FBI agents are send to London to interview Downer about his discussion with Papadopoulos.
August 2016: Brennan convenes a secret task force with analysts and officers from the CIA, FBI and NSA to keep the White House and senior government officials informed.
August 2016: Cambridge Analytica CEO Christopher Nix asks WikiLeaks if it can better organize the hacked Clinton-related emails it was releasing.
August 2016: Clovis tells Papadopoulos that he "would encourage" him to meet with Russian officials in Moscow. The trip does not take place. Bannon and Flynn also communicate with Papadopoulos about brokering ties between Trump and top foreign officials, including Russians.
Early August 2016: The CIA concludes that unnamed Trump campaign advisers might be working with Russia to interfere in the election by sabotaging the Clinton campaign through a multi-pronged attack personally approved by Putin that includes email hacking, disinformation and false news stories.
August 2, 2016: Corsi emails Stone and explains what he had learned, apparently through Malloch, about Assange's schedule for further email disclosures.
August 2, 2016: Kilimnik flies to New York on Deripaska's private jet and meets Manafort at Trump Tower.
August 3, 2016: Donald Jr. meets at Trump Tower with Israeli social media specialist Joel Zamel, whose company Psy-Group had drawn up a multimillion-dollar proposal for a social media manipulation effort to help elect Trump, and George Nader, a Lebanese-American businessman who was advising Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia, the king's main adviser, and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, the effective ruler of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The meeting is arranged by former Blackwater boss Erik Prince, whose private security company is active in the Middle East, and also attends. Nader offers to help the campaign and is quickly embraced as a close ally of the campaign. He subsequently meets frequently with Kushner, Flynn and Bannon. At the time, Nader is promoting a secret plan to use private contractors to destabilize Iran, the regional nemesis of Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
August 4, 2016: Brennan calls Alexander Bortnikov, director of the FSB, the post-Soviet successor to the KGB, to warn him that election interference will not be tolerated. Bortnikov feigns innocence and accuses the U.S. of scapegoating Moscow.
August 4, 2016: Stone emails Nunberg, writing "I dined with Julian Assange last night." Stone also appears on Alex Jones's InfoWars radio show and predicts "devastating" upcoming disclosures about the Clinton Foundation.
August 6, 2016: The Trump campaign says it has fired Stone. Stone says he resigned, but he remains a prominent surrogate for Trump.
August 8, 2016: Stone, in a speech to a Florida Republican group, declares that future releases of hacked Clinton emails will show "stone-cold proof of the criminality of Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton."
August 9, 2016: In a discussion about WikiLeaks' sources on Dutch television, Assange suddenly brings up Rich's murder, suggests Rich was a WikiLeaks source, but when pressed by the interviewer declines to say he was a source in an apparent effort to divert attention from WikiLeaks' relationship with Russia.
August 10, 2016: Steele states in a memo that a source says Putin is "generally satisfied with the progress of the anti-Clinton operation to date." This operation "involved the Kremlin supporting various US political figures, including funding indirectly their recent visits to Moscow." The source mentions Flynn and Page by name. A second memo cites Russian efforts to turn Sanders voters to Trump.
August 10, 2016: Assange offers a $20,000 reward for information about the Rich murder.
August 11, 2016: Nunberg's lawyer says he has "amicably" settled the $10 million lawsuit.
August 12, 2016: Hacked DCCC documents and the cellphone numbers and email addresses of most House Democrats appear on the "Guccifer 2.0" website. Capitol police instruct state police to inform the Democrats of the breech. The homes of two Democrats are vandalized and many are harassed with angry phone calls, texts and emails. The hack and subsequent DCCC-related hacks contain sensitive strategy files and district voter turnout models.
August 13, 2016: Kukes attends a $25,000-a-ticket Trump fundraising dinner at the East Hampton, New York home of Woody Johnson, a prominent Republican supporter who becomes U.S. ambassador to the UK.
August 15, 2016: Stone engages in direct email messaging with "Guccifer 2.0" for the first time.
August 15, 2016: "Guccifer" 2.0 releases hacked DCCC documents on Florida primary elections.
August 15, 2016: Johnson arranges a conference call with dozens of state election officials to enlist their support to shore up voting systems in light of the Russian effort. He gets no support.
Mid-August 2016: A Russian intelligence source informs the CIA that a massive operation targeting Western democracies using the hybrid warfare doctrine advocated by Gerasimov is being planned.
Mid-August 2016: The NSA discovers that Russian hackers have infiltrated its Tailored Access Operations unit at Fort Meade, the operations center for U.S. cyber warfare.
August 17, 2016: Trump receives his first classified intelligence briefing, which includes information on "direct links" between Russia, WikiLeaks and email hacks. Flynn attends. Despite this knowledge, Trump and his campaign continue to dismiss assertions of Russian interference.
August 19, 2016: Manafort is fired as campaign manager by Kushner on Trump's orders after a Washington Post report on millions of dollars in payments from the Ukrainian political party to Manafort. Trump reportedly is furious, telling an associate, "I've got a crook running my campaign."
August 19, 2016: Bannon is named campaign chief executive and Conway campaign manager. Gates stays with the campaign and is later found to have met with Kilimnik to discuss the campaign.
August 20, 2016: Members of an IRA team use Facebook to organize 17 pro-Trump rallies collectively called "Florida Goes Trump!"
August 21, 2016: Stone boasts that it will soon be Podesta's" time in the barrel" in a counterattack against the damaging Manafort disclosures.
August 21, 2016: "Guccifer 2.0" releases hacked DCCC documents on Pennsylvania congressional primaries.
Late August 2016: Brennan is so concerned about Trump-Russia links that he initiates one-on-one briefings with the Gang of Eight.
Late August 2016: Stone boasts that he has communicated with Assange, who he says has materials including "deleted" Clinton emails that would be embarrassing to her.
August 25, 2016: Brennan tells Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, then the highest ranking Democrat, that the FBI and not the CIA would have to take the lead in what is a domestic intelligence matter.
August 27, 2016: Reid writes to Comey without mentioning the Brennan briefing. He expresses great concern over what he calls mounting evidence "of a direct connection between the Russian government and Donald Trump's presidential campaign."
August 31, 2016: "Guccifer 2.0" releases documents hacked from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's personal computer.
Late summer 2016: Steele confides in Jonathan Winer, a friend who is a Democratic lawyer and foreign policy specialist who works at the State Department, that he was concerned about the lack of a response from the FBI regarding Russian election interference.
Late summer 2016: Steele, with Simpson's approval, has a series of off-the-record conversations about his dossier at the Tabard Inn in Washington with investigative journalists for The New York Times, The Washington Post, Yahoo! News, The New Yorker and CNN who specialized in national security.
September 2016: U.S. intelligence shows that although Republican sites are also being hacked by Russians, only DNC emails are being publicized by WikiLeaks.
September 2016: Aaron Nevins, a Republican political operative with ties to Stone, receives Democratic turnout analyses hacked by "Guccifer 2.0" and publishes them online under a pseudonym.
September 2016: The FBI and Justice Department make the second of two unsuccessful efforts to flip Deripaska.
September 2016: Butina begins seeking out interactions with Gordon, who served for six months as the Trump campaign's director of national security before leaving in August 2016 to join the nascent Trump transition effort. Butina invites Gordon to a concert by the rock band Styx in Washington and Gordon invites her to attend his birthday party in late October.
September 2016: Flynn and former CIA Director James Woolsey reportedly meet in New York to discuss the kidnapping and transport to Turkey of U.S.-based exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen for $15 million.
September 1, 2016: Trump, in an interview, denies having a relationship with Putin.
September 1, 2016: Putin, in an interview with Bloomberg News, evades questions about for whom the DNC hackers were working. "Does it really matter who hacked Mrs. Clinton's election campaign," he says. "What really matters is the content."
September 5, 2016: Obama, meeting with Putin at a conference of world leaders in Hangzhou, China, tells him that the U.S. knows about Russian election interference and says "[he] better stop or else." Putin responds by demanding proof and accuses the U.S. of interfering in Russia's internal affairs.
September 5, 2016: U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies are investigating "a broad covert Russian operation in the United States to sow public distrust in the upcoming presidential election and in U.S. political institutions," reports The Washington Post.
September 8, 2016: Kislyak meets with Sessions in his Senate office. They reportedly discuss the campaign.
September 9, 2016: "Guccifer 2.0" sends an email to Stone containing a link to hacked voter turnout data from the DCCC. Stone replies, saying that the information was "pretty standard."
September 9, 2016: Trump gives an interview on Russian government-funded RT America in which he states that the Russian government is "probably" not interfering in the election and blames Democrats for spreading lies that they are.
September 11, 2016: Kushner and wife Ivanka sit with the wife of Abramovich at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in Flushing, Queens.
September 14, 2016: Trump, Donald Jr. and others in the Trump Organization receive an email from someone identifying himself as "Mike Erickson" offering a decryption key and website addresses for already hacked WikiLeaks documents.
September 14, 2016: Steele states in a memo that Trump has paid bribes to Russians to further his hotel projects and engaged in compromising personal behavior beyond the alleged "golden showers" incident.
Mid-September 2016: Obama summons Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Ryan, Reid and Pelosi to the Oval Office where he pleads with them to forge a bipartisan alliance to fight back against Russian interference and work with state and local election officials to thwart any threats. McConnell refuses, telling the president that he's trying to politicize the matter.
September 15, 2016: "Guccifer 2.0" releases hacked DCCC documents from New Hampshire, Illinois, North Carolina and Ohio.
September 16, 2016: Stone declares on Boston Herald Radio that "I expect Julian Assange and the WikiLeaks people to drop a payload of new documents on Hillary on a weekly basis fairly soon." He says he is in touch with Assange "through an intermediary."
September 20, 2016: WikiLeaks initiates a private on again-off again correspondence with Donald Jr. regarding Clinton e-mails and campaign-related topics that continues until at least July 2017. In the initial email, WikiLeaks informs him that "a PAC run anti-Trump site putintrump.org is about to launch [that it has hacked into] . . . Any comments?"
September 22, 2016: Two other Gang of Eight members -- Dianne Feinstein and Representative Adam B. Schiff, the ranking Senate and House Intelligence Committee Democrats -- release a statement that Russian intelligence agencies are "making a serious and concerted effort" to influence the election and call on Putin to immediately halt the operation.
September 23, 2016: "Guccifer 2.0" releases hacked documents from DCCC chairman Ben Ray Lujan.
September 23, 2016: Yahoo! News posts a story by Michael Isikoff stating that U.S. officials are probing ties between Page and the Kremlin, the first story to reveal that the investigation involved a campaign figure.
September 25, 2016: McConnell writes to state election officials. He warns of unnamed "malefactors" who might seek to disrupt elections through online intrusions, but does not mention Russia.
September 26, 2016: Page takes a leave of absence from the Trump campaign amid reports that he has close ties to Russia officials.
Fall of 2016: In speeches, Trump parrots fake news stories hackers are peddling to voters in key swing state districts.
Fall of 2016: Putin is said to begin a purge of top-level gatekeepers between state cyber agencies and the West in an effort to cover up election interference.
October 2016: A memo compiled by Cody Shearer, a political activist and former journalist, that independently sets out some of the same allegations made in the Steele dossier, is given to the FBI by Steele.
October 2, 2016: Stone tweets that Clinton "is done" because of the WikiLeaks disclosures.
October 3, 2016: Steele meets with Gaeta and four Washington-based FBI counterintelligence agents in Rome and briefs them on his memos. They tell him about their investigation into an individual believed to be Papadoloulos. The FBI subsequently enters into a series of conversations with Steele to discuss hiring him under a $50,000 contract to continue his research after the election.
October 3, 2016: Stone tweets that he has "total confidence" in "my hero "Julian Assange [who] will educate the American people soon" about why Clinton should be locked up.
October 3, 2016: Breitbart News editor Matthew Boyle asks Assange in an email, apparently on behalf of Bannon, what further WikiLeaks disclosures are planned, adding "Hope it's good."
October 4, 2016: Stone emails Bannon that more emails damaging to Clinton will be forthcoming. He says that Assange fears for his personal safety but would nevertheless be releasing "a load every week going forward." Stone also says, "I've raised $150K for a targeted black digital campaign" and adds, "Ask Rebecca [Rebeckah Mercer] to send us some $$$."
October 4, 2016: "Guccifer 2.0" releases documents hacked from the Clinton Foundation.
October 7, 2016: Rice summons Kislyak to the White House and gives him a message to relay to Putin about U.S. plans to retaliate for the election interference.
October 7, 2016: The Obama administration -- through the Office of Director of National Intelligence and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) -- accuses the Russian government in a statement of hacking into emails from the DNC and other institutions and individuals, but stops short of mentioning the Trump campaign. In the run-up to release of the statement, Comey demurs because he says he believes that would look like the FBI was trying to tip the election. The statement is buried in the avalanche of subsequent October 7 news.
October 7, 2016: The lewd Access Hollywood Trump tape is released by The Washington Post.
October 7, 2016: Less than an hour after the Access Hollywood release and possibly in coordination with the Trump campaign, WikiLeaks begins to publish hacked Podesta emails, which include information embarrassing to Clinton regarding her closed-door speeches to Wall Street banks and other special interest groups.
October 8, 2016: A huge banner is unfurled from the Manhattan Bridge in New York. It has a picture of Putin against a Russian-flag background and the word "Peacemaker" below. The earliest promoters of the image on Twitter are American-sounding accounts later exposed as Russian fakes.
October 9, 2016: Trump cites WikiLeaks in the second presidential debate in accusing the DNC of rigging the Democratic primaries against Sanders.
October 10, 2016: "I love WikiLeaks," Trump says at a Pennsylvania rally in citing hacked emails.
October 11, 2016: Donald Jr. delivers a paid speech in Paris to the Center of Political and Foreign Affairs, a pro-Russian French think tank.
October 12, 2016: Steele states in a memo that Putin is unhappy with the U.S. election interference operation.
October 13, 2016: WikiLeaks releases a statement claiming it has not communicated with Stone. Stone sends WikiLeaks an email about his defense of Assange and the organization. WikiLeaks replies to Stone, telling him not to claim an association with it.
October 15, 2016: The FISA Court reportedly approves an FBI application for warrants allowing it examine emails and related documents in conjunction with Russian banks SVB and Alfa because a private computer server in Trump Tower apparently communicated with the banks' servers in Moscow and may have been used in conjunction with Russian election hacking.
October 15, 2016: Stone emails WikiLeaks, saying it should "figure out who [their] friends are."
Mid-October 2016: Flynn, Donald Jr., Conway and Parscale begin following Russian troll factory Twitter accounts and help push their anti-Clinton and fake news messages through to Election Day.
October 16, 2016: Trump tweets out a Wall Street Journal article about contributions McCabe's wife, a Clinton ally, received as a candidate for Virginia state Senate in 2015. McCabe becomes a fixture in Trump stump speeches about corruption in Washington.
October 19, 2016: Clinton declares at the third and final debate that Putin has backed Trump because he "would rather have a puppet as the president of the United States." Trump replies, "No puppet, no puppet, you're the puppet."
October 19, 2016: Steele states in a memo that Cohen has helped connect the Trump campaign with Russians.
October 20, 2016: Trump claims in an interview that he has met Putin. "Yes, a long time ago. [We] got along great, by the way," after denying having ever met him during the final presidential debate.
October 21, 2016: WikiLeaks' Twitter account, reportedly Assange himself, sends Donald Jr. another private message: "Hey Don. We have an unusual idea. Leak us one or more of your father's tax returns" . . . as "it will dramatically improve the perception of our impartiality." Assange also asks Donald Jr. to get his father to publicly reference a specific searchable WikiLeaks publication. Donald Jr. tweets the link. Assange encourages Trump, through his son, not to concede the election if he loses.
October 22, 2016: Trump tweets about hacked Podesta emails 15 minutes after WikiLeaks asks Donald Jr. to inform his father about the new email release. WikiLeaks subsequently releases the emails.
October 24, 2016: Trump tells a Tampa rally that he has "nothing to do with Russia, folks. I'll give you a written statement."
Late October 2016: Steele meets with Washington Post reporters, who describe him as being visibly agitated over what he has learned about Trump campaign ties to Russia.
October 28, 2016: Comey tells Congress that the FBI is reopening its Clinton investigation because of emails found on a lapstop computer belonging to former Congressman Anthony Weiner, whose estranged wife is a top Clinton aide. The Clinton campaign is thrown into crisis only 11 days before the election.
October 30, 2016: Reid writes a letter to Comey angrily accusing him of a "double standard" in renewing the Clinton investigation so close to the election while sitting on "explosive information" on ties between Trump and Russia.
October 30, 2016: Slate magazine publishes a report on the Alfa Bank servers.
October 31, 2016: The Obama administration, using a secure channel to Moscow originally created to avert a nuclear war, warns that its election interference is unacceptable. Russia does not reply until after the election, when it denies the accusation.
October 31, 2016: After meeting with Simpson, David Corn of Mother Jones magazine reports on the Steele dossier without identifying Steele by name. Steele had told Corn that "this is something of huge significance, way above party politics." The story is little noticed in the flurry of election news, while its publication prompts the FBI to end its discussions with Steele about continuing his research.
October 31, 2016: The New York Times publishes a story stating that the FBI has not found a clear link between the Trump campaign and Russia, although buried in the 10th paragraph is mention that intelligence agencies had been compelled by "apparent connections between some of Mr. Trump's aides and Moscow" to open a broad investigation.
October 31~November 1, 2016: Russian hackers attempt to breach U.S. voting systems. Among their targets are the computers of more than 100 local voting officials, which they seek to compromise with malware-laden emails.
Early November 2016: The Obama administration readies a plan to use in the event Trump claims a Clinton victory was rigged. It includes calling for congressional Republicans, former presidents and former Cabinet-level officials to try and forestall a political crisis by validating the election result and affirming conclusions reached by the U.S. intelligence community that Russian interference sought to favor Trump.
Early November 2016: During a private meeting with an unidentified American, Mohammed bin Zayed reportedly says that Putin might be interested in resolving the conflict in Syria in exchange for the lifting of sanctions. Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the U.A.E. There apparently is no follow-up to the offer.
November 6, 2016: Comey announces that after an intensive review of the "new" emails, they were found to be either personal or duplicates of those previously examined, and that the FBI had not changed the conclusions it reached in July in exonerating Clinton. He says nothing about the FBI's ongoing investigation of Russian election interference and possible Trump campaign ties to it.
November 6, 2016: Former FBI analyst Clint Watts and two colleagues publish a little-noticed article in War on the Rocks online magazine stating that Russia had perpetrated a coordinated attack using social media, hacks and disinformation.
November 8, 2016: Sergei Krivov suffers fatal blunt force injuries after falling from the roof of the Russian consulate in New York. Krivov is widely believed to have been a counter spy who coordinated efforts to prevent U.S. eavesdropping. Russian officials claim he died of a heart attack.
November 8, 2016: Trump defeats Clinton decisively in the Election College but loses the popular vote.
November 9, 2016: Butina contacts Torshin, saying "I'm going to sleep. It's 3 am here. I am ready for further orders."
November 9, 2016: Russia's Parliament erupts in applause when Putin announces Trump's election victory.
November 9, 2016: Nix says "We are thrilled that our revolutionary approach to data-driven communications played such an integral part in President-elect Donald Trump's extraordinary win.
November 10, 2016: Obama, meeting with Trump at the White House, expresses profound concern about Flynn becoming a top national security aide because of problems when he managed the DIA, his 2015 trip to Moscow and other Russia ties.
November 10, 2016: Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov acknowledges that the Trump campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election. The campaign issues a strong denial.
November 11, 2016: Hicks gives The AP a blanket denial regarding campaign contacts with Russia, stating, "It never happened. There was no communication between the campaign and any foreign entity during the campaign."
November 11, 2016: Another huge banner is unfurled from the Arlington Memorial Bridge in Washington. It shows the face of Obama with "Goodbye Murderer" in big red letters. Like the Manhattan Bridge banner,
the earliest promoters of the image on Twitter are American-sounding accounts later exposed as Russian fakes.
November 12, 2016: Butina throws a costume party for her birthday at Cafe Deluxe in Washington. She dresses as Empress Alexandra while Erickson comes as Rasputin. She brags to partygoers that she had been "part of the Trump campaign's communications with Russia."
November 15, 2016: Zuckerberg writes that "Personally I think that the idea that fake news on Facebook . . . influenced the election in any way -- I think is a pretty crazy idea."
November 18, 2016: Trump names Flynn as his national security adviser.
Mid-November 2016: Marshall Billingslea, a former Bush administration national security official, is named to head Trump's national security transition team. He is deeply concerned about Russian intentions, including those involving Flynn, and Trump-Russian contacts.
November 19, 2016: Obama pulls aside Zuckerberg at a conference of world leaders in Lima, Peru and warns him that he needs to take the threat of disinformation on social platforms more seriously.
November 25, 2016: Trump names McFarland deputy national security adviser.
Late November 2016: Obama administration officials provide Billingslea with a CIA file on Kislyak because of Billingslea's belief that Flynn is not taking seriously the implications of his contacts with the Russian ambassador.
Late November 2016: Steele writes a memo that he later reportedly shares with Mueller based on intelligence from a "senior Russian official" who says the Kremlin, through unspecified channels, had asked Trump to not appoint Russia hawk Mitt Romney as secretary of state and instead appoint someone who would be prepared to lift sanctions and cooperate on security issues of interest to Russia.
November 18~20, 2016: McCain, attending the annual Halifax International Security Forum in Nova Scotia, is made aware of the Steele dossier by Sir Andrew Wood, a former British ambassador to Russia and former Steele protégé.
November 28, 2016: David J. Kramer, a former State Department official with Russia expertise and staffer at the McCain Institute for International Leadership in Washington, D.C., meets Steele in London at McCain's behest. They discuss the dossier.
December 1, 2016: Kushner and Flynn meet with Kislyak at Trump Tower. They discuss easing sanctions while Kushner proposes that a secret communications channel be set up between the Trump transition team and Kremlin using Russian diplomatic facilities in the U.S. to shield their discussions from monitoring.
Early December 2016: Steele provides an encrypted copy off his final memo to Fusion GPS with instructions to pass it on to McCain and Kramer.
Early December 2016: Cohen meets with Ahmed al-Rumaihi, who at the time was head of the investments division of the Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority, at the Peninsula Hotel in New York. He reportedly asks for at least $1 million from the government of Qatar in exchange for access to and advice about the then-incoming administration.
December 4 or 5, 2016: Colonel Sergei Mikhailov, deputy chief of the KGB's Information Security Center, and his deputy, Major Dmitry Dokuchaev, who are believed to have been involved in election hacking, are arrested and subsequently disappear after reportedly being charged with passing on information to the CIA about the hacking. Also charged and missing is Rusian Stoyanov, a Kaspersky Lab executive.
December 8, 2016: Page visits Moscow to meet with what he calls "business leaders and thought leaders."
December 9, 2016: Obama orders a comprehensive review of Russian interference in U.S. elections going back to 2008 with the intention of making some of the findings public. They are not.
December 9, 2016: McCain meets privately with Comey at his FBI office and gives him a copy of the Steele dossier.
December 11, 2016: Republican Representative Devin Nunes announces that he has been named to the transition team executive committee.
December 12, 2016: Trump tweets "Can you imagine if the election results were the opposite and we tried to play the Russia/CIA card? It would be called conspiracy theory!"
December 12, 2016: Flynn and Bannon meet at Trump Tower with Mohammed al-Thani, Qatar's foreign minister. Cohen and Rumaihi talk outside the meeting and Cohen again asks for at least $1 million, which Qatar declines to pay.
December 13, 2016: Kushner, at the request of Kislyak, meets with Sergei Gorkov, a close associate of Putin and chief executive of VEB, which had been sanctioned by the Obama administration and one of its executives convicted of espionage.
December 13, 2016: A Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman terms emerging stories about election-related hacking a power struggle between U.S. intelligence agencies.
December 13, 2016: After dangling the secretary of state appointment before Romney, Trump nominates Rex Tillerson, the CEO of ExxonMobil. Tillerson has long-standing business ties with Russia, including brokering a 2011 partnership between ExxonMobil and Rosneft.
December 13, 2016: Steele files his final report with Fusion GPS. He is paid $168,000 for his work.
December 16, 2016: Obama, in one of his last news briefings, expresses anger that the election "came to be dominated by a bunch of these leaks."
December 16, 2016: WikiLeaks asks if Trump could encourage Australia to appoint Assange, an Australian national, as its ambassador to the U.S.
December 18, 2016: Conway tells CBS News that there was no contact between the Trump campaign and the Russians: "Absolutely not. And I discussed that with the president-elect just last night. Those conversations never happened."
December 21, 2016: Yves Chandelon, the chief NATO auditor responsible for investigating Russian money laundering, is found in his car in a small Belgian town with a wound to the head in what may have been a murder made to resemble a suicide.
December 23, 2016: Trump tweets: "Vladimir Putin said today about Hillary and Dems: 'In my opinion, it is humiliating. One must be able to lose with dignity.' So true!"
December 26, 2016: Oleg Erovinkin, a former FSB spy, Sechin aide at Rosneft and possibly a key source in the Steele dossier, is found dead in the back seat of his chaffeur-driven Lexus in Moscow. The cause of death is stated to be a heart attack, but some intelligence sources believe Erovinkin was assassinated as part of an effort to wipe out a U.S. espionage network.
December 28, 2016: Obama announces new sanctions because of election interference. They include expelling 35 diplomats, several with GRU and FSB ties, and closing Russian compounds in Maryland and on Long Island. In a secret parting shot, Obama orders code be placed in Russian computer systems, a sort of "Kilroy was here" message.
December 28, 2016: In response to the new sanctions, Trump tweets: "Doing my best to disregard the many inflammatory President O statements and roadblocks. Thought it was going to be a smooth transition -- NOT!"
December 29, 2016: Flynn, who is vacationing in the Dominican Republic, makes a series of calls to McFarland at Mar-a-Lago, Trump's Palm Beach, Florida resort. They discuss how Trump should respond to the new sanctions. Flynn calls Kislyak and asks him to "refrain from escalating the situation" because of the new sanctions.
December 29, 2016: McFarland writes in an email that "If there is a tit-for-tat escalation Trump will have difficulty improving relations with Russia, which has just thrown the U.S.A. election to him." When the email is revealed in November 2017, a White House spokesman says McFarland was merely describing how the Democrats were portraying Trump's win.
December 30, 2016: Kislyak tells Flynn the Kremlin has chosen to moderate its response "as the result of his request."
December 30, 2016: Putin says Moscow will not retaliate in response to the new sanctions, prompting Trump to him in a tweet, saying "Great move on delay (by V. Putin) -- I always knew he was very smart!"
Early 2017: In an unsigned an undated memo titled "The Echo Chamber" circulated among Trump advisers, it is claimed that the "communications infrastructure" that the Obama White House used to "sell Obamacare and the Iran Deal to the public" where a coordinated effort was being mounted "to undermine President Trump's foreign policy" through organized attacks in the press.
January 2017: Cohen, who does not land a White House job, cold-calls major corporations, including Swiss drug manufacturer Novartis, and offers access to the new president for a price.
January 2017: Assange's lawyers reportedly approach Adam Waldman, a well-connected Washington attorney, about negotiating a limited immunity deal with the Justice Department that might free him from the Ecuadorian embassy in return for limiting classified CIA information that WikiLeaks may release in the future and providing information about the DNC email hacks. Comey reportedly disapproves of the deal, while Assange releases damaging CIA documents in March and April after negotiations founder.
Early January 2017: The CIA and FBI are said to have "high confidence" that Russia was trying to help Trump, while the NSA has only "moderate confidence." The agencies also believe that Russia gained computer access to election boards in several states.
Early January 2017: U.S. intelligence officials, looking for clues as to why Putin did not retaliate against new sanctions, discover Flynn's conversations with Kislyak, whose communications are routinely monitored.
Early January 2017: U.S. intelligence officials warn their Israeli counterparts to be cautious about sharing information with Trump because he might be compromised by Russian.
Early January 2017: Trump's inner circle pleads with him at a Trump Tower meeting to acknowledge Russian election interference. He refuses, becomes agitated, rails that U.S. intelligence can't be trusted and scoffs at the suggestion that his candidacy had been propelled by forces other than himself.
Early January 2017: The FISA Court order allowing investigators to wiretap Manafort is renewed and includes a subsequent period when he was known to talk to by then-President Trump.
January 2, 2017: Former Russian spy Chapman praises Trump in an Instagram post.
January 3~5, 2017: In a series of tweets, Trump attacks the integrity of the U.S. intelligence community's findings that Russia interfered in the election. In one tweet, he writes: "Julian Assange said 'a 14 year old could have hacked Podesta' -- why was DNC so careless? Also said Russians did not give him the info!"
January 4, 2017: Flynn tells Trump transition counsel Donald McGahn that he is under investigation for secretly working as a paid lobbyist for Turkey during the campaign. McGahn fails to follow up on the information.
January 5, 2017: Rice releases a public version of a secret assessment stating that the CIA, FBI and NSA believe that Russia hacked Democratic email accounts and then passed the emails on to WikiLeaks: "We assess that Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the U.S. presidential election. Russia's goals were to undermine public faith in the U.S. democratic process, denigrate Secretary of State Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency. We further assess that Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump."
January 5, 2017: Obama holds a brief White House meeting with Comey and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates following release of the secret assessment. Also present are Vice President Biden and Rice. The president asks if there is any reason why his administration cannot share information fully as it pertains to Russia with the incoming administration. The answer remains classified.
January 6, 2017: NSA Director Admiral Michael Rogers, Clapper, Brennan and Comey brief Trump at a meeting at Trump Tower. They tell him that their agencies have concluded that the Russian government mounted a massive covert campaign to disrupt the election and elect him president. After the others leave the room, Comey briefs the president-elect on the contents of the Steele dossier and begins keeping contemporaneous notes on his meetings with Trump, something he later said he had never felt the need to do with Obama. Trump later tells aides that he believes the agency chiefs are trying to shake him down because they have something on him.
January 6, 2017: Following the Trump Tower meeting, Comey begins writing contemporaneous memos of his meetings with Trump, copies of which he sends to FBI officials.
January 9, 2017: Cohen has the first of several meetings with Vekselberg and Andrew Intrater, Vekselberg's cousin and CEO of Columbus Nova, his U.S. affiliate. They discuss ways to improve US-Russia relations.
January 10, 2017: BuzzFeed News publishes a story on the Steele dossier and a redacted version of the dossier. The story notes that the dossier has been circulating among elected officials, U.S. intelligence agencies and journalists. Shortly thereafter, Steele goes to ground for two months.
January 10, 2017: CNN picks up the BuzzFeed News report and states the U.S. intelligence community is taking the dossier seriously.
January 10, 2017: Attorney General nominee Sessions states at a Senate confirmation hearing that he never had communications with any Russians.
January 10, 2017: Rice informs Trump of a military plan to retake the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa, Syria with the help of Syrian-Turkish forces. National security adviser designate Flynn, who has been secretly lobbying for the anti-Kurd Turkish government, tells Rice to hold off approving the mission.
January 11, 2017: Prince, working as an emissary for Trump, meets secretly with Kirill Dmitriev, a Russian banker said to be close to Putin, in the Seychelles islands in an apparent effort to establish a back-channel line of communication between Moscow and the president-elect. Also present is George Nader, who convened the meeting.
January 11, 2017: Trump, in a news conference at Trump Tower, claims he has a relationship with Putin, saying "He's done a very brilliant job in terms of what he represents and who he is representing."
January 11, 2017: Trump, responding to the BuzzFeed News report, tweets that "Russia has never tried to use leverage over me. I HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH RUSSIA -- NO DEALS, NO LOANS, NO NOTHING!"
January 13, 2017: Trump, in a Wall Street Journal interview, says he is open to lifting sanctions against Russia if it is helpful on other fronts.
January 14, 2017: The transition team announces that Maryland U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein will replace Yates.
January 14, 2017: Trump tweets that "INTELLIGENCE INSIDERS NOW CLAIM THE TRUMP DOSSIER IS 'A COMPLETE FRAUD'!"
January 15, 2017: Vice President Pence states on "Face the Nation" that Flynn, whom Trump has named national security adviser, did not discuss sanctions with Kislyak nor did any Trump associates have contacts with Russians.
Mid-January 2017: Page and Bannon, who will become Trump's chief strategist, reportedly discuss the Steele dossier in a phone call probably monitored by the FBI.
Mid-January 2017: Manfort advises Trump chief of staff Reince Priebus in a phone call on how the handle the burgeoning Russia investigation. He says that Steele dossier is "garbage" and suggests it was motivated by Democratic activists and donors working with Ukrainian government officials who supported Clinton.
January 17, 2017: Putin dismisses the Steele dossier as "false."
January 17~20, 2017: Anthony Scaramucci, an informal Trump adviser and later White House communications director, meets with Dmitriev at the World Economic Forum in Davos. Dmitriev, it is later reported, sends out a two-page memo summarizes portions of what was discussed in the Seychelles meeting, which included four potential areas of cooperation between Russia and the U.S. and an action plan to improve relations over the next 12 months.
January 18, 2017: Kushner omits his meetings with Kislyak on his security clearance application.
January 20, 2017: Trump takes office. Several Russians with close ties to Putin have VIP seats to the inauguration, including Vekselberg, who sits with Cohen, and Veselnitskaya, while subsequent investigations reveal that illegal foreign money was among the $100 million that flowed into the inaugural committee.
January 20, 2017: Trump insists that the Russia scandal is "fake news" while naming Flynn and other people to key positions in his administration who had contacts with Russians involved in the election interference effort.
January 20, 2017: Flynn texts Alex Copson, a former business associate, assuring him that sanctions would immediately be "ripped up" by the Trump administration, which would help facilitate the deal to build nuclear power plants in the Middle East with which Copson was involved.
January 22, 2017: Flynn is sworn in as national security adviser.
January 22, 2017: Trump singles out Comey at an event in the Blue Room at the White House, man-hugs him and declares, "Oh, and there's James! He's become more famous than me."
January 23, 2017: Trump, angry over stories about the Steele dossier, lashes out at the U.S. intelligence community, blaming it for leaking news of the dossier. "I think it was disgraceful," he says, " . . . That's something out of Nazi Germany."
Late January 2017: Trump asks Clapper to disavow the allegations in the Steele dossier. He refuses.
January 24, 2017: Flynn is interviewed by the FBI in his White House office about contacts with Kislyak. He denies that they discussed sanctions.
January 25, 2017: The House Intelligence Committee, chaired by Nunes, announces that it will investigate Russian election interference and any connection to political campaigns.
January 26, 2017: Now-acting Attorney General Yates tells now-White House counsel McGahn that misstatements made by Flynn to the Trump administration regarding his meetings with Russians make him vulnerable to blackmail by Moscow.
January 27, 2017: Yates, responding to a query from McGahn, says that Flynn could be criminally prosecuted.
January 27, 2017: Trump tells Comey "I need loyalty, I expect loyalty" during a private dinner in the Green Room at the White House. Comey, according to notes he made, replies that he can pledge "honesty" but not "loyalty."
January 27, 2017: FBI agents interview Papadopoulos. He falsely tells them that contracts with Mifsud and other Russians occurred before he joined the campaign.
January 28, 2017: In a memo, Comey states that Trump castigated Flynn for not promptly scheduling a return phone call of congratulations from a foreign head of state. Comey writes: "In telling the story, the President pointed his fingers at his head and said, 'the guy has serious judgment issues.' "
January 28, 2017: Trump receives a congratulatory phone call from Putin.
Late January 2017: Cohen, Sater and Andrii Artemenko, a wealthy oligarch and Ukrainian lawmaker, meet at the Loews Regency Hotel in Manhattan where a "peace plan" for Russian control of Crimea is hatched. Cohen later delivers the "peace plan" to Flynn at the White House.
Late January 2017: The America First Policies organization is formed to promote Trump's policies. Barrack and Gates are among the four founding members. Gates reportedly had been on Barrack's payroll since after the election and remained so until his October 30, 2017 indictment, but is ousted from America First as the Russia investigation intensifies.
January 30, 2017: Trump fires Yates, allegedly over her conclusion that Trump's Muslim ban is unconstitutional.
January 30, 2017: Deutsche Bank agrees to pay a $425 million fine to settle charges it laundered billions of dollars from 2010 to 2014 in a scheme known as the "Global Laundromat" run by Russian criminals with ties to Putin.
February 2017: U.S. officials seek the extradition to the U.S. of Firtash on racketeering charges.
February 2, 2017: Senior White House attorney John Eisenberg reviews highly classified intelligence intercepts of telephone conversations between Flynn and Kislyak which incontrovertibly demonstrates that Flynn had misled the FBI and Pence about the conversations. The White House does nothing.
February 2, 2017: Erickson seeks to arrange a meeting for Torshin with Trump at the National Prayer Breakfast. Butina is in attendance.
February 2, 2017: Trump abruptly cancels a meeting with Torshin after Spanish police identify him as a "godfather" of an organized crime money-laundering scheme.
February 4, 2017: Trump defends Putin in a Fox News interview, saying "I do respect him," and when pressed on allegations Putin was behind certain atrocities, responds: "What, you think our country's so innocent?"
February 7, 2017: Trump tweets that "I don't know Putin, have no deals in Russia, and the haters are going crazy -- yet Obama can make a deal with Iran, #1 in terror, no problem!"
February 8, 2017: The Senate confirms Sessions in a 52-47 vote.
February 8, 2017: In a memo, Comey recounts how Trump denied the allegation in the Steele dossier that he consorted with prostitutes in Moscow during a phone conversation, but also claimed that Putin had told him "we have some of the most beautiful hookers in the world."
February 8, 2018: McGahn, Priebus and Eisenberg confront Flynn, who says nothing to allay their concerns.
February 12, 2017: Trump is informed by Priebus and McGahn that Flynn is under investigation, undercutting his later claims that he was unaware of that when he met with Comey on February 14, 2017.
February 13, 2017: Conway says that Flynn "enjoys the full confidence of the president."
February 13, 2017: Flynn is forced to resign as national security adviser, ostensibly because he misled Pence about his communications with Kislyak.
February 14, 2017: Trump tells Comey in a private Oval Office meeting that he wants him to drop the FBI's investigation of Flynn. In a memo, Comey also states that Trump was upset that transcripts of his phone conversations with the leaders of Mexico and Australia had appeared in The Washington Post.. He writes that he told the president "I was eager to find leakers and would like to nail one to the door as a message. I said something about it being difficult and he replied that we need to go after the reporters, and referred to the fact that 10 or 15 years ago we put them in jail to find out what they know, and it worked."
February 14, 2017: Members of Trump's campaign and other associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, reports The New York Times.
February 15, 2017: Priebus asks Comey and McCabe to refute news reports about Trump campaign ties with Russian government officials. They demur.
February 15, 2017: In a memo, Comey states that Priebus asked if the FBI was wiretapping Flynn. Comey writes: "I paused for a few seconds and then said that I would answer here, but that this illustrated the kind of question that had to be asked and answered through established channels. I explained that it was important that communication about any particular case go through that channel to protect us and to protect the (White House) from any accusations of improper influence. He said he understood."
February 15, 2017: Comey confronts Sessions and tells him he doesn't want to be left alone with the president.
February 15, 2017: Trump tweets "This Russian connection non-sense is merely an attempt to cover-up the many mistakes made in Hillary Clinton's losing campaign."
February 16, 2017: Trump, discussing Flynn's ouster at a press conference, denies having any links to Russia and again calls the scandal "fake news."
February 20, 2017: Russian U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin, widely believed to be a spy, dies in a New York hospital after suddenly becoming ill. The State Department, at the request of Russia, suppresses public disclosure of the cause of death, citing Churkin's posthumous diplomatic immunity.
February 20, 2017: Trump assistant press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders denies contacts between Russia and the Trump campaign, stating, "This is a nonstory because to the best of our knowledge, no contacts took place, so it's hard to make a comment on something that never happened."
February 23, 2017: Trump declines to answer a question about WikiLeaks during an interview, again blames the DNC for getting hacked, and erroneously claims CrowdStrike is Ukraine-based.
February 24, 2017: Comey rejects requests from the Trump administration to publicly rebut reports about Trump associates' contacts with Russians. Trump counters by tweeting that FBI sources are leaking information to the press and demands that stop.
February 24, 2017: Spicer is asked at a press briefing whether "the President has an improper relationship with Russia" and responds, "He has no interests in Russia. He has no -- there's only so many times he can deny something that doesn't exist."
February 26, 2017: Trump tweets that "Russia talk is fake news put out by the Dems, and played up by the media, in order to mask the big election defeat and the illegal leaks."
February 27, 2017: Trump tells a reporter that "I haven't called Russia in 10 years."
Late February 2017: Sessions consults with career Justice Department lawyers who recommend that he recuse himself from the Russia investigation.
March 2017: McCabe authorizes an FBI investigation into whether Sessions lacked candor when testifying before Congress about contacts with Russians.
March 2017: The FBI questions Page over the course of five interviews about allegations that he served as a middleman between the Trump campaign and Russia during the election.
March 2017: Kushner's real estate company ends talks with Anbang, a Chinese insurance company with close ties to the Beijing government, to unload 666 Fifth Avenue. The deal reportedly collapses because of Kushner's notoriety and the likelihood it would be subject to review by a government committee on foreign investment in the U.S.
March 1, 2017: Trump orders McGahn to lobby Sessions not to recuse himself.
March 1, 2017: Sessions did speak with Kislyak during the campaign, contradicting his past statements, reports The Washington Post.
March 2, 2017: Sessions recuses himself after acknowledging that he failed to disclose his meetings with Kislyak. The president erupts into anger in front of several White House officials.
March 2, 2017: Alex Oronov, a naturalized U.S. citizen, dies under unexplained circumstances in his native Ukraine. He reportedly helped set up the late January meeting between Cohen, Sater and Artemenko.
March 4, 2017: Trump tweets that Obama ordered the phones at Trump Tower to be wiretapped. The claim had originated in an RT broadcast in Moscow and was then picked up by Andrew Napolitano, a Fox News legal analyst.
Weekend of March 4~5, 2017: Sessions flies to Mar-a-Lago ostensibly to discuss Trump's Muslim travel ban. The president berates the attorney general for recusing himself and tells him to reverse his decision so he can retain control over the Russia investigation. Sessions refuses.
March 5, 2017: Comey asks the Justice Department to deny Trump's wiretapping claim. Justice refuses and Comey's request is leaked to the news media.
March 5, 2017: Trump reverses a pledge to mandate American steel for the Keystone Pipeline. A direct beneficiary is Abramovich.
March 7, 2017: WikiLeaks releases about 8,000 pages of documents on the CIA's cyber weapons.
March 11, 2017: Trump fires Bharara, who was conducting a Russia-related investigation, among others.
March 17, 2017: At least 63 wealthy Russians have invested nearly $100 million in Trump luxury high rises in southern Florida, reports Reuters.
March 20, 2017: Comey in effect calls Trump a liar in publicly acknowledging for the first time in testimony before Congress that the FBI's investigation into Russian election interfering includes Trump associates' contacts with Russians.
March 20, 2017: In a series of four tweets during and after Comey's testimony, Trump says there is no evidence he "colluded" with Russia, says "The Democrats made up and pushed the Russia story as an excuse for running a terrible campaign," and claims the "real story . . . is the leaking of classified information."
March 21, 2017: Nikolai Gorokhov, a lawyer for the Magnitsky family and key witness for the U.S. government in a money laundering suit against a Russian holding company, falls or is thrown from the 4th floor of his Moscow apartment. He is seriously injured but survives.
March 22, 2017: Manafort secretly worked on behalf of Deripaska to enhance the image of Putin and the Russian government in the West, reports The AP. White House press secretary Sean Spicer downplays Manafort's role in the campaign and states Trump has had no financial dealings with Russia.
March 22, 2017: Nunes accuses the Obama administration of "unmasking" the names of Trump transition team members although the intelligence is not related to the Russia investigation.
March 23, 2017: Denis Voronokov is shot to death on a street in Kiev, Ukraine, after being hunted by the FSB. The former Russian military colonel and Putin insider was preparing to testify about the inner workings of the Putin regime.
Late March 2017: In the wake of Comey's testimony, Trump makes separate appeals to Daniel Coats, the director of national intelligence, and Rogers to publicly deny the existence of any evidence of Trump-Russia collusion. They refuse.
Late March 2017: Trump begins to openly discuss his desire to fire Comey with White House officials.
April 7, 2017: Spanish authorities arrest Pyotr Levashov at the request of U.S. authorities, who believe he is one of the election interference hackers. They say he distributed fake news to try to influence voters through sendings billions of spambot messages by infecting tens of thousands of computers.
April 8, 2017: Nunes ostensibly recuses himself from the House Intelligence Committee's investigation after it is revealed that White House security staffers fed him information in an effort to bolster Trump's false claim that Obama had personally ordered that his Trump Tower phones be tapped.
April 9, 2017: McFarland is asked to step down as deputy national security adviser. Media reports say she was not a good fit at the NSC.
April 11, 2017: Trump asks Comey in a phone call when he plans to issue a statement that he is not under investigation. Comey responds that he has passed the request on to his bosses at Justice but had not heard back.
April 25, 2017: House Oversight Committee members assert that Flynn may have violated federal law by not fully disclosing his business dealings with Russians.
April 28, 2017: The Senate Intelligence Committee asks four Trump campaign associates -- Flynn, Page, Manafort and Stone -- to hand over emails and other records of their dealings with Russians and says it is prepared to subpoena those who refuse to cooperate.
Early May 2017: Comey meets with Rosenstein to request a substantial increase in funding and personnel to expand the FBI's investigation in light of information showing possible evidence of Trump-Russia collusion.
Early May 2017: Stone, who is being investigated for his Russia ties, reportedly lobbies the president to fire Comey.
Early May 2017: White House lawyers warn Trump that it would be inappropriate for him to reach out to Flynn because he is under investigation.
May 2, 2017: Trump agrees in a phone conversation with Putin to meet with Lavrov, who will be meeting with Tillerson in coming days. Putin neglects to tell Trump that the Lavrov-Tillerson meeting with be 4,100 miles away in Alaska, while the White House keeps secret the forthcoming visit.
May 2, 2017: Clinton says Comey's decision to tell Congress of the "new" Clinton emails and WikiLeaks email disclosures helped alter the outcome of the election because people inclined to vote for her "got scared off."
May 2, 2017: In two tweets, Trump says "FBI Director Comey was the best thing that ever happened to Hillary Clinton in that he gave her a free pass for many bad deeds!" and "Trump/Russia story was an excuse used by the Democrats as justification for losing the election. Perhaps Trump just ran a great campaign?"
May 3, 2017: Comey tells Congress, "It makes me mildly nauseous to think that we might have had some impact on the election" because of his Clinton case disclosure. He says the Russia investigation is continuing.
May 5, 2017: An aide to Sessions reportedly approaches a Capital Hill staff member asking whether the staffer has any derogatory information about Comey because the attorney general wanted one negative story about the FBI director each day.
May 5, 2017: Kushner reportedly urges Trump to take a hard line when he announces support for an Arab boycott of Qatar, which had turned down Kushner and his father for a half-billion dollar bailout.
May 5, 2017: Russian hackers release a trove of emails purportedly from French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron's campaign.
May 6~7, 2017: Trump spends the weekend at his Bedminster, New Jersey, golf course fuming over Comey and decides to fire him.
May 7, 2017: Trump and aide Stephen Miller finishing drafting a letter firing Comey aboard Air Force One after it returns to Washington. McGahn convinces the president not to release the letter because of its angry and meandering tone and the possibility it could be interpreted to be an attempt to obstruct justice.
May 8, 2017: Rosenstein drafts a letter at Trump's request laying out a rationale for firing Comey based on his handling of the Clinton email server investigation.
May 9, 2017: Trump dispatches Schiller to FBI headquarters with a letter firing Comey. He asserts that the FBI director mishandled the Clinton email investigations and uses the Rosenstein letter as a justification. McCabe is named acting FBI director.
May 9, 2017: Rosenstein threatens to resign after the White House portrays him as the mastermind behind the Comey firing.
May 9, 2017: John Kelly, secretary of homeland security, reportedly calls Comey as he returns to Washington and tells him what Trump did was "dishonorable" and says he is considering resigning.
May 9, 2017: Manafort flies to Quito, where he meets with Ecuadorian President Lenín Moreno to discuss his offer help broker a deal for China to invest in the country's power system, which might yield him a large commission. The talks hang up on the fate of Assange, whom Manafort reportedly suggests he could help hand over to the U.S, and peter out after Mueller is appointed.
May 10, 2017: Trump, meeting with Lavrov and Kislyak at the White House, boasts about highly classified information from an ally about ISIS. He tells them "I just fired the head of the FBI. He was crazy, a real nut job. . . . I faced great pressure because of Russia. That's taken off."
May 11, 2017: Testifying before Congress, McCabe rejects White House assertions that Comey had lost the backing of rank-and-file agents, and says the FBI's Russia investigation will continue.
May 11, 2017: Trump, in an interview with NBC News's Lester Holt, suggests the real reason he fired Comey was the Russia investigation.
May 11, 2017: Trump tweets that "Russia must be laughing up their sleeves watching as the U.S. tears itself apart over a Democratic excuse for losing the election."
May 12, 2017: Trump issues a veiled threat to Comey to not leak any information that he may have and indicates he may have tapes of their conversations.
May 12, 2017: The Justice Department abruptly settles its money-laundering case case against Prevezon Holdings for only $6 million.
May 14, 2017: Right-wing Republican opposition researcher Peter W. Smith is found dead in a Rochester, Minnesota hotel room. A note at his bedside said "No foul play whatsoever." Smith had implied in an interview with a Wall Street Journal reporter about 10 days before his apparent suicide that he worked for Flynn, who he says was colluding with Russian hackers trying to obtain the "missing" Clinton emails.
Mid-May 2017: McCabe authorizes an obstruction of justice investigation against Trump. He writes a confidential memo recounting a conversation with Rosenstein following Comey's firing in which the deputy attorney general says Trump originally asked him to reference Russia in his memo justifying Comey's dismissal.
May 15, 2017: The Washington Post publishes a story on Trump's boast to Lavrov and Kislyak and remarks about Comey. The White House denies that the president revealed sensitive intelligence.
May 16, 2017: Trump, in early morning tweets, contradicts his aides and appears to acknowledge that The Post story is accurate, while the White House refuses to release a transcript of the Lavrov and Kislyak meeting.
May 16, 2017: Rosenstein suggests to Justice Department and FBI officials, including McCabe according to McCabe's memos, that he secretly record Trump in the White House to expose the chaos consuming the administration, and discusses recruiting Cabinet members to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove the president from office for being unfit.
May 16, 2017: Fox News publishes, with the help of a wealthy Trump backer, a story stating that Rich stole DNC emails prior to his murder. The story is an attempt to discredit the U.S. intelligence community's conclusion that Russia hacked the emails, and Assange intimates that Rich and not "Guccifer 2.0" was WikiLeaks' source for the emails. Fox says that Democrats might have been connected to the murder and that a cover-up had thwarted the official investigation.
May 17, 2017: Rosenstein names Mueller as special counsel to oversee the Russia investigation. While Republicans and Democrats widely praise the selection, Trump calls the revived investigation the "greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history."
May 19, 2017: Russian officials boasted in conversations during the presidential campaign that they could use Flynn to influence Trump and his team, reports CNN.
May 19, 2017: Strzok texts Lisa Page that "There's no big there there." Although the context is unclear, conservative commentators later declare that it is confirmation there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Late May 2017: Trump berates Sessions in an Oval Office meeting for recusing himself. Sessions plans to resign but is talked out of doing so by Priebus, Pence and Bannon. Sessions subsequently sends a resignation letter to Trump, who rejects it.
May 23, 2017: Brennan tells the House Intelligence Committee that the Trump campaign may have been successfully recruited by Russia.
May 23, 2017: Trump retains Kasowitz in connection with the scandal. He previously represented Trump in fraud, divorce and numerous other cases, and has clients with extensive Kremlin ties.
May 23, 2017: Fox News retracts the Rich story.
May 26, 2017: FBI agents search one of Manafort's storage lockers in Virginia.
May 31, 2017: Spicer says the Trump administration will stop answering media queries about Trump's alleged ties to Russia.
May 31, 2017: Clinton, in an interview at Recode's Code Conference, says she is "leaning" toward believing that Trump's campaign colluded with Russia.
June 1, 2017: Shifting from previous blanket denials of Russian involvement, Putin says "patriotically minded" private Russian hackers could have been involved in cyberattacks to help the Trump campaign.
June 2, 2017: Mueller assumes control over a federal grand jury criminal investigation of Flynn's ties to Turkey and the criminal investigation of Manafort.
June 3, 2017: NSA employee Reality Winner is arrested and charged with releasing a classified report on Russian election hacking.
June 5, 2017: Trump, in a series of tweets, chastises the Justice Department for his problems and again criticizes Sessions for recusing himself.
June 7, 2017: Coats and Rogers, testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee, refuse to discuss Trump's efforts to get them to deny the existence of evidence of Trump-Russia collusion.
June 8, 2017: Comey, in testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee carried lived on national television, calls Trump a liar and untrustworthy, implies the president has obstructed justice, and says he leaked notes of his February 14 meeting with Trump to The New York Times with the intention of getting a special counsel named.
June 9, 2017: Trump says Comey's testimony vindicates him, accuses the former FBI director of lying and offers to give sworn testimony.
June 11, 2017: Trump calls Comey "cowardly" and vows to find out if he leaked any more sensitive information.
June 12, 2017: A longtime Trump friend says the president is considering whether to fire Mueller as some of Trump's conservative allies attack the special counsel's credibility. A subsequent New York Times report states that Trump ordered Mueller to be fired but ultimately backed down after McGahn threatened to resign rather than carry out the directive.
June 13, 2017: Kasowitz bragged to friends that he got Bharara fired after telling Trump "this guy is going to get you," reports Talking Points Memo.
June 13, 2017: Rosenstein says Mueller will have "full independence" and only he can fire him for cause.
June 13, 2017: Sessions testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee, indignantly denies any collusion with Russia but declines to answer questions about his conduct and interactions with Trump.
June 14, 2017: Mueller is investigating whether Trump obstructed justice, reports The Washington Post.
June 15, 2017: Pence hires a criminal defense lawyer Richard Cullen to assist him in the various investigations.
June 15, 2017: Trump, in a series of tweets, says that Mueller is "a very bad and conflicted," that "They made up a phony collusion with the Russians story, found zero proof, so now they go for obstruction of justice on the phony story. Nice," and "You are witnessing the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American political history -- led by some very bad and conflicted people!"
June 16, 2017: Trump attacks Rosenstein in a tweet for leading a "witch hunt" in acknowledging publicly for the first time that he is under investigation.
Mid-June 2017: Coats and Rogers tell Mueller's team and Senate investigators that Trump suggested they say publicly there was no collusion between his campaign and the Russians.
Summer of 2017: Mueller's team interviews Steele.
June 20, 2017: Trump and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko meet at the White House. The meeting is arranged by Cohen after receiving a secret payment of at least $400,000. Shortly after the Ukrainian president returned home, his country's anti-corruption agency stopped its investigation into Manafort and Kilimnik.
June 20, 2017: Sessions hires a criminal defense lawyer to help him in the various investigations.
June 21, 2017: Samuel Liles, acting director of the DHS's intelligence and cyber division, tells the Senate Intelligence Committee that people connected to the Russian government tried to hack election-related computer systems in 21 states.
June 21, 2017: Johnson tells the House Intelligence Committee that the Obama administration feared acknowledging Russian election interference would reveal too much about intelligence gathering and be interpreted as "taking sides" in the race.
June 22, 2017: Trump, in two tweets, says that he did not tape his meetings with Comey and states "By the way, if Russia was working so hard on the 2016 Election, it all took place during the Obama Admin. Why didn't they stop them?"
June 25, 2017: Conway, appearing on ABC's "This Week," blames the Obama administration for failing to deal with Russian election interference.
June 26, 2017: Trump tweets " . . . under a magnifying glass, they have zero 'tapes' of T people colluding. There is no collusion & no obstruction. I should be given an apology!"
July 27, 2017: Papadopoulos is arrested by FBI agents at Dulles Airport outside Washington.
June 27, 2017: Kasowitz writes a blistering confidential memo to Mueller that calls Comey "Machiavellian," dishonest and "unbounded by law and regulation" as Trump's lawyers seek to undermine the credibility of a critical witness against the president.
June 27, 2017: Manafort registers retroactively as a foreign agent. He reveals that he failed to disclose, as required by law, that his consulting firm received more than $17 million over two years from Yanukovych's political party before Yanukovych fled Ukraine to Russia in 2014.
June 29~30, 2017: The Wall Street Journal publishes two stories based on an interview with Smith about Flynn's possible collusion with Russian hackers.
July 6, 2017: Trump, at a news conference in Warsaw, Poland, again questions U.S. intelligence agency claims Russia interfered in the election and said Obama deliberately didn't address Russian hacking for political reasons.
July 7, 2017: Trump and Putin meet for the first time at a G20 meeting in Hamburg, Germany. Trump raises the issue of election interference, which Putin denies. Putin claims Trump had "agreed" with his statements of denial. It is later revealed that Trump met with Putin in an undisclosed hour-long second meeting without the benefit of his own interpreter or national security advisers during which they may have discussed the bogus cover story about Russian adoptions that Trump was to use the next day in drafting Donald Jr.'s statement about the June 9, 2016 meeting.
July 8, 2017: Donald Jr. says in a statement that the June 9, 2016 meeting was about Russian adoptions. It is later revealed that Trump overruled aides to personally direct that a misleading statement be issued by Donald Jr. on the meeting and the president was the sole author of those statements, making himself further vulnerable to coverup allegations. It also is later revealed that Hicks said during a conference call on the statement that Donald Jr.'s emails about the meeting "will never get out," leaving Mark Corallo, chief spokesman for Trump's legal team, with concerns that Hicks could be contemplating obstructing justice.
July 9, 2017: Trump, returning from Europe, declares it is "time to move forward" in a constructive relationship with Russia and says he is prepared to team with Moscow on forming an "impenetrable Cyber Security" unit to prevent future hacking breaches.
July 9~11, 2017: The New York Times publishes stories on three consecutive days on the June 9, 2016 meeting.
July 10, 2017: Donald Jr. hires a criminal defense lawyer to assist him in the various investigations.
July 12, 2017: Trump tweets that Donald Jr. "was open, transparent and innocent. This is the greatest Witch Hunt in political history. Sad!"
July 12, 2017: Two Democratic Party donors and a former party staff member file an invasion-of-privacy lawsuit against the Trump campaign and Stone, accusing them of conspiring with Russian hackers in the release of hacked Democratic emails and files that exposed their personal information to the public.
July 12, 2017: Sekulow tells CNN that neither he nor Trump were involved in drafting Donald Jr.'s statement on the June 9, 2016 meeting.
July 14, 2017: Trump hires criminal defense lawyer Ty Cobb, a former prosecutor, while Kushner hires a new criminal lawyer. Kushner, meanwhile, had been urged to step down by some members of Trump's legal team who viewed him as an increasing legal liability for the president because of his role in the scandal. The move ultimately was rejected.
July 14, 2017: Kushner has updated his security clearance application at least three times because of omissions and added more than 100 names of foreign contracts after initially providing none, as well as dozens of financial holdings, report CBS News and The Washington Post.
July 15, 2017: Trump tweets that the scandal is a "hoax," yet again attacks Clinton and defends Donald Jr.'s June 9, 2016 meeting with Russians.
July 17, 2017: Approaching six months in office, 58 percent of voters disapprove of Trump in a Washington Post-ABC poll, a level never reached by presidents Clinton and Obama and reached only in the second term by President George W. Bush.
July 18, 2017: Referring to his second meeting with Putin at the G20 conference, Trump tweets: "Fake News story of secret dinner with Putin is 'sick."
July 19, 2017: Trump, in an interview with The New York Times, says he would not have appointed Sessions if he knew he was going to recuse himself, and warns Mueller not to delve into his family's finances. Behind the scenes, Trump again demands Sessions' resignation, but Priebus argues that would trigger the resignations of Rosenstein and the third-ranking Justice Department official, and Trump backs down.
July 20, 2017: The Treasury Department fines ExxonMobil $2 million for signing business agreements with the head of Russian-government owned energy giant Rosneft in 2014 in violation of sanctions. Tillerson was chief executive of the U.S. energy giant at the time.
July 20, 2017: Thomas Bossert, Trump's chief counterterrorism adviser, says it's "pretty clear" that Russia interfered in the election.
July 20, 2017: Corallo resigns because of growing frustration with the Trump legal team and concerns about whether he was being told the truth.
July 21, 2017: Kislyak told his superiors in Moscow that he had substantive discussions about campaign-related matters and policy issues important to Moscow when he met with Sessions, contradicting public assertions by the embattled attorney general, reports The Washington Post.
July 21, 2017: Kushner and Manafort, threatened with subpoenas, agree to turn over documents to Senate and House intelligence committees.
July 21, 2017: Brennan and Clapper express anger at Trump's statements disparaging the U.S. intelligence community and express incredulity at his embrace of Russia.
July 21, 2017: Spicer resigns after Trump names Scaramucci communications director.
July 22, 2017: Trump tweets that he has "complete power to pardon, why think of that when only crime so far is LEAKS against us. FAKE NEWS."
July 22, 2017: Defying Trump, congressional leaders reach an agreement on sweeping new sanctions to punish Russia for its election interference.
July 23, 2017: Scaramucci says on CNN's "State of the Union" that Trump remains unconvinced of Russian election interference because he cannot separate intelligence findings from his view that the issue is being used to cast doubt on his presidency.
July 24, 2017: Kushner secured a $295 million real estate deal in 2015 with Lev Leviev, a Soviet-born oligarch who was a business partner in Prevezon Holdings, reports The Guardian.
July 24~25, 2017: Kushner testifies before the Senate and House intelligence committees in a closed session. In a prepared statement, he denies any collusion in his four meetings with Russian officials while undercutting Trump and administration members who deny any Russian contacts during the campaign.
July 25, 2017: Trump, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, says Mueller's job is not safe.
July 25, 2017: In a series of tweets, Trump says that "Jared Kushner did very well yesterday in proving he did not collude with the Russians. Witch Hunt. Next up, 11 year old Barron Trump!" and "Problem is the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!"
July 25, 2017: The Senate Judiciary Committee subpoenas Manafort to publicly testify.
July 25, 2017: The House approves in a 419-3 vote a sweeping package of economic sanctions.
July 26, 2017: Trump, for the third consecutive day, publicly criticizes Sessions for recusing himself and not pursuing an investigation against Clinton as the president's aides consider whether to replace him. In a tweet, he also calls for the firing of McCabe, who is a potential corroborating witness for Comey's conversations with Trump.
July 26, 2017: Armed with a search warrant, FBI agents working for Mueller enter Manafort's Alexandria, Virginia home by picking the front door lock. They seize document binders and copy his computer files, looking for evidence he set up secret offshore bank accounts.
July 27, 2017: The Senate approves in a 98-2 vote and sends to Trump the sweeping package of economic sanctions, setting up a congressional confrontation with the president, who has sought to ease sanctions.
July 28, 2017: Russia, retaliating for congressional approval of expanded sanctions, seizes two U.S. diplomatic compounds and orders the U.S. embassy in Moscow to reduce its staff.
July 28, 2017: Trump fires Priebus.
July 30, 2017: Putin dramatically escalates his pushback against sanctions by ordering the U.S. to reduce its diplomatic staff by 755 people, the largest forced reduction since the Communist revolution in 1917.
July 31, 2017: Trump fires Scaramucci.
July 31, 2017: Trump overruled his aides to personally direct that a misleading statement be issued by Donald Jr. on the June 9, 2016 meeting and was the sole author of those statements, making himself further vulnerable to coverup allegations, reports The Washington Post.
Late July 2017: Strzok is transferred from Mueller's team. It later emerges that he exchanged text messages with Lisa Page that expressed anti-Trump views.
July 31, 2017: Kelly is sworn in as Trump's chief of staff.
August 2017: Chief District Court Judge Beryl A. Howell gives Mueller permission to empanel a grand jury in Washington.
August 1, 2017: Christopher Wray is confirmed as FBI director.
August 1, 2017: A lawsuit is filed by the parents of Rich against Fox News and a wealthy Trump backer for its story about their son's murder being linked to DNC email thefts. The suit states that the White House was aware of the story and Trump himself might have worked on it.
August 2, 2017: Trump signs the sanctions bill.
August 2, 2017: Rosenstein authorizes Mueller to investigate whether Manafort worked with Russia on election interference.
August 3, 2017: Trump, speaking at a rally in West Virginia, forcefully dismisses allegations of collusion with Russia as "a total fabrication" and blames the scandal on Democrats who "still can't get over" 2016 election results.
August 4, 2017: Trump, inviting speculation that he or a family member could be indicted by the grand jury empaneled by Mueller, retweets a video clip from "Fox & Friends" in which commentator and longtime Trump friend Jeanine Pirro calls Mueller's investigation politically motivated.
August 6, 2017: Trump and Conway call Mueller's investigation a "fabrication" in separate interviews.
August 7, 2017: Trump calls Senator Thom Tillis, a North Carolina Republican, and tells him he doesn't like a bipartisan bill being drafted to protect Mueller.
August 10, 2017: Trump says he is "very thankful" that U.S. diplomats were expelled because it means a smaller State Department payroll. He also contradicts private statements about his desire to dismiss Mueller, saying he has not considered firing him.
August 11, 2017: Akhmetshin testifies before the Mueller grand jury.
August 16, 2017: Rohrabacher meets with Assange, who he says assured him Russia did not leak emails damaging to Clinton to WikiLeaks.
Late August 2017: GRU hackers unsuccessfully try to infiltrate the computer system of Claire McCaskill, a vulnerable Democratic senator from Missouri running for reelection in 2018 shortly after Trump visits Missouri, chides McCaskill and urges a crowd to "vote her out of office."
Late August 2017: Subpoenas are issued by Mueller's grand jury to six prominent Washington lobbying firms in connection with the finances of Flynn and Manafort.
August 30, 2017: Trump calls Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, a day after reports Donald Jr. will meet with the committee in a closed session to talk about Russia. Trump promises him support for the biofuel ethanol, a key issue for the Iowa lawmaker.
August 31, 2017: The Trump administration orders Russia to close its San Francisco consulate and annexes in Washington and New York in response to Russia's July 28 order to reduce the number of U.S. diplomatic personnel in that country.
August 31, 2017: Two senior Republican senators -- Graham and Grassley -- allege Comey began writing a statement clearing Clinton before the FBI had interviewed key witnesses in the spring of 2016.
September 2017: Dowd reportedly has a conversation with Reginald Brown, Manafort's lawyer at the time, about the idea of Trump pardoning Manafort. Trump's lawyers reportedly were concerned about what Manafort might reveal if he was to cut a deal with the special prosecutor.
September 1, 2017: Trump lashes out at Comey in a tweet, charging that he had "exonerated" Clinton before fully completing the FBI investigation into her private email server.
September 1, 2017: The existence and contents of the original Comey firing letter are revealed in several media reports. One report alleges that Pence was aware of the original letter, may have helped cover it up and then lied about the basis for the firing.
September 1, 2017: The Justice Department states that there is no evidence to support Trump's claim that Obama had personally ordered that his Trump Tower phones be tapped.
September 5, 2017: Putin, visiting China, responds to a question about the possibility of Trump being impeached by saying he is "not my bride, and I am not his groom."
September 5, 2017: Nikita Isaev, leader of a far-right Russian political party, says Trump should be hit with compromising material he claims is being held by Russia in retaliation for closing Russian diplomatic missions.
September 5, 2017: Trump's attorneys ask a federal judge to dismiss an invasion-of-privavy lawsuit filed by two Democratic Party donors and a former party staff member accusing the Trump campaign and Stone of conspiring with Russian hackers in the release of hacked Democratic emails and files that exposed their personal information to the public.
September 7, 2017: Donald Jr. explains in a statement before meeting in a closed session with the Senate Intelligence Committee that he set up the June 9, 2016 meeting with Russians because it was important for him to learn about Clinton's "fitness" to be president.
September 7, 2017: Wray says he has seen no interference from the White House on the Russia investigation.
September 10, 2017: Bannon, dismissed as White House chief strategist, says Trump's dismissal of Comey was the biggest mistake in "modern political history" in a 60 Minutes interview.
September 12, 2017: Sarah Huckabee Sanders, now press secretary, says that the Justice Department should "certainly look at" charging Comey for leaking classified information.
September 12, 2017: The Campaign Legal Center, a campaign finance reform group, accuses Facebook of being used as an "accomplice" in Russian interference and urges Zuckerberg to reverse his position and publicly release secretly-sponsored Russian political ads.
September 13, 2017: The U.S. government bans use of Kaspersky Lab software on their networks because of concerns that the company has ties to the Russian government and its cyberespionage activities.
September 13, 2017: Two Democratic lawmakers assert that Flynn failed to disclose a 2015 Middle East trip to pursue the nuclear power plant project.
September 13, 2017: Rohrabacher proposes in a call to Kelly that a pardon deal be made for Assange in return for the WikiLeaks founder providing digital evidence that he says would clear Russia of election interference allegations.
Mid-September 2017: Friction escalates between McGahn and Cobb regarding how or whether to cooperate with Mueller. A New York Times reporter overhears Cobb stating that McGahn had "a couple of documents locked in a safe" to which he wanted access.
Mid-September 2017: Mueller obtains Russian-linked Facebook ads after getting a search warrant for them.
Mid-September 2017: The Secret Service stops protecting Donald Jr., who says he is seeking more privacy.
September 15, 2017: Grassley, citing what he calls Justice Department stonewalling, considers issuing subpoenas to compel several witnesses to testify about what they know concerning Trump's Russia connections and Comey's firing.
September 19, 2017: The Republican National Committee acknowledges it is helping pay Trump's lawyer fees related to the scandal and has directed more than $427,000 to his attorneys.
September 20, 2017: Manafort is doing unregistered work for Kurdish Iraqis who are seeking an independence referendum while under investigation for similar work, reports The New York Times.
September 21, 2017: Under growing public pressure to reveal more about covert Russian propaganda on its site, Facebook turns over more than 3,000 Russian-linked ads to congressional committees investigating the scandal. The ads sought to exploit racial and social divides in American society. A subsequent investigation by social media companies identifies the IRA as being at the center of the propaganda effort.
September 22, 2017: DHS contacts election officials in 21 states to notify them that they had been targeted by Russian hackers during the campaign.
September 24~26, 2017: Kushner and wife Ivanka reportedly move their private email accounts to a Trump Organization server after their use of private accounts for White House business comes under scrutiny.
September 25, 2017: Trey Gowdy, Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee and persistent Clinton email server critic, joins Democrats in asking that the administration disclose the use of a private server personal email address by Kushner and any other White House aide for government business. The New York Times reports that at least five other aides, including Kushner's wife Ivanka did the same.
September 26, 2017: Stone testifies before the House Intelligence Committee in a closed session and states that he believes the DNC hacking was an "inside job."
September 28, 2017: Evidence emerges that Twitter may have been used more extensively than Facebook in Russia's covert propaganda campaign. The company tells congressional investigators it has shut down 201 accounts tied to Russian operatives, including three linked to RT that spent $274,100 in election ads.
September 29, 2017: The Trump administration has not begun enforcing new sanctions two months after the president signed the law imposing them.
Early October 2017: Hoping that Mueller will clear Trump, his legal team pursue a new course of cooperating with the special counsel and then asking him to affirm that Trump is not under investigation, something he was unsuccessful in getting Comey to do before eventually firing him.
Early October 2017: Trump loyalists are losing patience with Republican congressional leaders over Russia investigations reaching into the president's inner circle and hobbling the White House.
October 2, 2017: RT and Sputnik, Russian government-controlled news outlets, join alt-right sites in publishing fake news accounts on Facebook and elsewhere of the Las Vegas hotel massacre, including false information about the shooter's political affiliation.
October 4, 2017: Senate Intelligence Committee leaders say political candidates should expect further efforts by Russian to interfere in elections in November and 2018. Committee chairman Richard Burr complains that the committee has "hit a wall" in an attempt to verify the Steele dossier because Steele will not talk to them.
October 5, 2017: Papadopoulos pleads guilty to making false statements to the FBI abut his contacts with Mifsud. He agrees to cooperate with Mueller's investigation.
October 5, 2017: Mifsud participates in a seminar in Moscow timed to Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud visit to the country about Yemen security issues. BuzzFeed News later reports that Mifsud was a member of the Saudi king's delegation.
October 6, 2017: Steele says he is willing to meet with the Senate Intelligence Committee.
October 9, 2017: Google reveals that Russian operatives exploited YouTube, the DoubleClick ad network and Google searches as part of its election interference.
October 10, 2017: Page tells the Senate Intelligence Committee he will not cooperate and will plead the Fifth Amendment if called to testify.
October 13, 2017: Priebus is interviewed by Mueller's team.
October 13, 2017: Manafort's business dealings with Deripaska total about $60 million over the past decade, more than previously disclosed, reports NBC News.
October 15, 2017: The Trump campaign spent more than $1.1 million on legal fees in the third quarter of the year, a sharp increase coinciding with the escalation of Russian scandal investigations.
October 16, 2017: Lawyers for Fusion GPS send a scathing letter to Nunes, who has issued subpoenas to the firm regarding the Steele dossier despite having recused himself from the House Intelligence Committee investigation. They accuse him of a "pattern of unprofessional conduct" and say they will advise Fusion GPS to not cooperate.
October 16, 2017: Daphne Anne Caruana Galizia, a Maltese journalist and anti-corruption activist who was instrumental in the Panama Papers leak, is killed by a car bomb.
October 19, 2017: Pompeo falsely asserts that U.S. intelligence agencies determined that Russian election interference did not alter the outcome.
October 19, 2017: Trump suggests that Russia, the FBI and Democrats could have underwritten the Steele dossier. He offers no evidence.
October 19, 2017: Putin defends Trump in a speech, calling on Americans to stop showing him "disrespect."
October 20, 2017: Trump pledges at least $430,000 of his own money to help cover aides' Russia investigation legal costs, raising ethical and obstruction-of-justice concerns.
October 24, 2017: The Clinton campaign and DNC helped fund the research that resulted in the Steele dossier, reports The Washington Post.
October 25, 2017: House Republicans announce investigations into unproven allegations that the Clinton Foundation received donations in exchange for Clinton's support as secretary of state for a business deal giving Russia control over a larger share of the U.S. uranium production and another into how the FBI investigated Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state.
October 27, 2017: A federal grand jury in Washington approves the first charges brought by Mueller.
October 27, 2017: Trump tweets that "It is now commonly agreed, after many months of costly looking, that there were no collusion between Russia and Trump. Was collusion with HC!"
October 29, 2017: Trump, in a series of angry tweets, demands that Clinton be pursued more forcefully by congressional investigators, writing "Do something!"
October 30, 2017: Mueller announces that Papadopoulos has pleaded guilty
to lying to the FBI about contacts with Mifsud, while Manafort and Gates have been indicted for conspiring against the U.S. for money laundering and tax and foreign lobbying violations. They enter not guilty pleas. The White House says the announcements have nothing to do with the president's campaign or campaign activity and there is no evidence of collusion.
October 30, 2017: Russian agents intending to sow discord among Americans during the election campaign disseminated inflammatory posts that reached 126 million Facebook users, published more than 131,000 Twitter messages and uploaded over 1,000 YouTube videos, according to information provided Congress by Facebook, Twitter and Google.
November 2, 2017: Page, in testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, admits to meeting with Russian government officials during a July 2016 trip to Moscow.
November 2, 2017: At least six members of the Russian government involved in the DNC hacking have been identified and evidence is being assembled to charge them, reports the Wall Street Journal.
November 2, 2017: Mifsud goes missing.
November 3, 2017: Trump presses the Justice Department to investigate his political opponents, claiming that Democrats were the ones who acted corruptly during the election, as three House Republicans file a resolution calling on Mueller to recuse himself because of conflicts of interest.
November 5, 2017: Commerce Secretary Ross hid business tries to close allies of Putin and continues to have a significant interest in a Russian shipping firm, reports The New York Times.
November 5, 2017: Veselnitskaya claims in a Moscow interview that Donald Jr. had told her at the June 9, 2016 meeting that key sanctions against Russia might be lifted in what seems to be a tacit exchange for Russian help in his father's campaign.
November 8, 2017: Schiller tells the House Intelligence Committee that salacious claims in the Steele dossier are false.
November 10, 2017: Mueller is investigating the role played by Flynn in an alleged plot to kidnap Gulen, reports the Wall Street Journal. It is later reported by Daily Beast that securing Zarrab's release was to be part of the plot.
November 11~12, 2017: Trump, after an informal meeting with Putin at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference in Vietnam, says that the Russian leader believes he is sincere in his denials of election interference. He later angrily asserts that questions about the interference are a politically motivated "artificial Democratic hit job" hindering cooperation with Russia, calls Comey a proven "liar" and "leaker," and says that former top U.S. intelligence officials who concluded that interference took place are "political hacks" before later walking back the jab.
November 13, 2017: RT America registers as a foreign agent, meeting a Justice Department deadline under protest.
Mid-November 2017: Kushner is questioned about Flynn by Mueller's team.
November 16, 2017: Senate Judiciary Committee leaders charge that Kushner failed to disclose to the committee in July 24 testimony that he received and forwarded WikiLeaks emails, including Torshin's May 2016 proposal of a meeting between Putin and Trump.
November 25, 2017: Putin signs a bill allowing the Russian government to list foreign news outlets as foreign agents in retaliation for the U.S. similarly listing Russian-government backed news outlets. Hours later, Trump in a tweet praises Fox News, calls CNN "fake news," and says CNN International represents "our nation to the world very poorly."
November 27, 2017: Flynn lawyer Robert Kelner meets with Mueller's team.
November 28, 2017: Zarrab pleads guilty and will testify against a co-dendant.
November 30, 2017: Prince testifies before the House Intelligence Committee in a closed session. He offers blanket denials of any involvement in or awareness of Trump campaign-Russia dealings.
November 30, 2017: Manafort, who has been under house arrest since his indictment, offers four properties his lawyers claim are worth $11.65 million as bail.
December 2017: Sessions reportedly begins pushing Wray to oust McCabe, alleging ties to Democratic politicians. Wray reportedly threatens to resign.
Early December 2017: Trump, furious over news reports about a new round of subpoenas from Mueller that reportedly include his dealings with Deutsche Bank, tells advisers that the special counsel's investigation has to be shut down. The reports are determined to be inaccurate and Trump backs down.
December 1, 2017: Flynn, who says he is cooperating with Mueller, enters a guilty plea to a single count of lying to FBI agents about his backchannel communications with Kislyak during the presidential transition. Court documents show that Flynn's communications were part of a coordinated effort by aides running the transition and, in at least one instance, he was directed by a "very senior member" of the transition team regarding the communications.
December 2, 2017: Trump says he is not worried about what Flynn might tell Mueller. "What has been shown is no collusion, no collusion. There has been absolutely no collusion. So we're very happy."
December 3, 2017: In a predawn tweet, Trump denies that he asked Comey to halt his investigation into Flynn, saying it is "Just more Fake News covering another Comey lie!" He later tweets that the FBI's reputation is "in tatters."
December 3, 2017: Kushner, in yet another security clearance application omission, failed to disclose his role as co-director of the Charles and Seryl Kushner Foundation from 2006 to 2015, a period when the group funded an Israeli settlement considered to be illegal under international law, reports Newsweek.
December 4, 2017: Dowd says the president knew in late January 2017, more than two weeks before he fired Flynn, that the then-national security adviser had probably given the FBI the same inaccurate information he provided to Pence about a December 29, 2016 call to Kislyak.
December 4, 2017: Manafort and a Russian colleague with intelligence service ties believed to be Kilimnik were ghost-writing an English-language op-ed piece about Manafort's work for Ukraine in violation of a court order banning him from making statements to the press, Mueller's office says in a court filing. Judge Amy Berman Jackson reprimands Manafort's lawyer, Kevin Downing, saying "This is a criminal trial, not a public relations campaign."
December 5, 2017: The conservative group Judicial Watch says internal Justice Department emails show that Andrew Weissman, a senior prosecutor assigned to Mueller's team, is biased against Trump and calls for the entire investigation to be shut down.
December 6, 2017: A resolution from a liberal Democrat to impeach Trump is tabled by a 364-58 vote. Democratic leaders say it is premature to consider impeachment.
December 6, 2017: In over seven hours of testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, Donald Jr. refuses to say what he and his father discussed after the June 9, 2016 Trump Tower meeting.
December 7, 2017: Wray, appearing before the House Judiciary Committee, defend's the FBI's integrity in response to hostile questioning from Republicans. He declines to discuss an investigation by the Justice Department's inspector general into the FBI's investigation into Clinton's private email server that now includes examining why Strzok was transferred from Mueller's team.
December 7, 2017: The Republican dominated House Committee on Ethics clears Nunes of wrongdoing related to accusations that he improperly disclosed classified information in an effort to bolster Trump's false claim that Obama had personally ordered that his Trump Tower phones be tapped.
December 7~8, 2017: Hicks is interviewed by Mueller's investigators, including her role in formulating a statement for Donald Jr. about the June 9, 2016 meeting.
December 8, 2017: The Trump administration says it will levy new sanctions on Russia to try to force it to comply with a Cold War-era nuclear arms treaty it has violated by deploying a banned cruise missile.
December 12, 2017: PolitiFact names Trump's claim that Russian election interference is a "made-up" story" its "Lie of the Year."
December 13, 2017: Rosenstein, testifying before the House Judiciary Committee in open session, defends Mueller in allegations that bias might being affecting this investigation. He states that he had not seen good cause to fire Mueller.
December 14, 2017: Trump lawyer Kory Langhofer accuses Mueller of illegally obtaining emails and other documents involving the transition team in one of the mounting attacks on the investigation. In a rare public statement, a Mueller spokesman defends how the materials were obtained.
December 15, 2017: Trump again castigates the FBI and dismisses the Russia investigation as a "scam" before departing to address the FBI at its Quantico, Virginia training academy.
Mid-December 2017: Rosenstein, visits the White House to enlist Trump's support in fighting off document demands from Nunes and the House Intelligence Committee. Trump undercuts him and wants to know if he is "on my team."
December 17, 2017: Trump says he has no plans to fire Mueller.
December 17, 2017: Putin phones Trump to thank him for a tip from the CIA that apparently thwarted a terror attack in St. Petersburg. The FSB says it arrested the terrorists, whom it says were connected to ISIS, in raids on December 13~14.
December 18, 2017: The Senate Intelligence Committee orders members of Stein's Green Party campaign to turn over documents relating to the committee's investigation on Russian election interference.
December 18, 2017: Clapper, appearing on CNN, says Putin treats Trump like an "asset."
December 19, 2017: Donald Jr., in a speech in Palm Beach, Florida, suggests top government officials are working to undermine his father's administration, an apparent allusion to "deep state" conspiracy theories pushed by Republicans seeking Mueller's ouster.
December 20, 2017: In a policy shift, the Trump administration uses the Magnitsky Act to sanction Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov and four other high-profile individual with ties to Russia.
December 22, 2017: Some 22 former U.S. attorneys, who served under presidents from Richard Nixon to Obama, say in an open letter that it is "critical" to the "interests of justice and public trust" that Mueller must be allowed to continue his investigation unimpeded.
December 26, 2017: Trump again attacks the Steele dossier, tweeting that "Dossier is bogus. Clinton campaign, DNC funded Dossier . . . And [the FBI] used this Crooked Hillary pile of garbage as the basis for going after the Tump Campaign!"
December 28, 2017: Hacker Konstantin Koslovsky, who is being prosecuted in Russia for breaking into a bank computer, says that he had hacked the DNC at the request of the FSB.
December 29, 2017: The Trump administration grants Deutsche Bank and four other megabanks temporary multi-year waivers of punishment for their prior convictions for manipulating global interest rates.
Late December 2017: Mueller, meeting with Trump lawyers Dowd and Sekulow, raises the likelihood he will want to interview the president, triggering a discussion among Trump's attorneys about how to avoid a sit-down encounter or set limits on one. Mueller indicates that of especial interest to his investigation are the circumstances surrounding the firings of Flynn and Comey.
INVESTIGATION and PUSHBACK
January 2018: Butina meets in Washington with Oleg Zhiganov, longtime director of the Russian Cultural Centre, an adjunct of the Russian Foreign Ministry, an arm of
Rossotrudnichestvo, and long believed to be involved in espionage.
January 2, 2018: The founders of Fusion GPS call for the full release of their testimony before congressional committees investigating the scandal, most of which has not been made public.
January 3, 2018: Bannon is quoted as saying in Fire and Fury -- a new tell-all book by Michael Wolff -- on the Trump White House that the June 9, 2016 meeting involving Donald Jr., Kushner and Manafort, "Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it's all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately." A furious Trump fires back that Bannon "lost his mind" after being dismissed from the White House and had "very little to do" with him winning.
January 3, 2018: As Republicans escalate efforts to discredit Mueller's investigation, Manafort sues the special prosecutor over his indictment on business dealings ostensibly having nothing to do with Russian interference in the campaign. He asks a federal court to narrow Mueller's authority.
January 4, 2018: Leaders of the House Freedom Caucus, a right-wing Republican group, call on Sessions to resign because he has not sufficiently defended Trump or protected him from investigations into his Russia ties.
January 5, 2018: Escalating the conservative pushback over the scandal, Senate Judiciary Committee Republicans, led by Grassley and Graham, tell the Justice Department they have reason to believe Steele lied to federal authorities, possibly the FBI, about contacts with reporters concerning his dossier in the committee's first criminal referral.
January 6, 2018: Trump insists at a Camp David news conference that he is not under investigation, saying "There's been no collusion, no crime . . . Everything I've done is 100 percent proper."
January 6, 2018: Stone tells Randy Credico, a New York-based comedian whom he has identified as his back channel to WikiLeaks, that he is working to get Assange a blanket pardon from Trump.
January 7, 2018: Bannon, finding himself cut off from political allies and financial patrons, apologizes to the president, calling Donald Jr. "both a patriot and a good man."
January 9, 2018: Feinstein, the ranking Senate Judiciary Committee Democrat, releases the transcript of Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson's closed-door testimony before the committee. He tells lawmakers, among other things, that Steele had "a Sterling reputation as a person who doesn't exaggerate" and said he believed Steele had unearthed "a security issue about whether a presidential candidate was being blackmailed," a reference to Trump.
January 9, 2018: Bannon is subpoenaed to testify before Mueller's grand jury, the first time the special prosecutor has used a grand jury to seek information from a member of Trump's inner circle.
January 10, 2018: Senate Foreign Relations Committee Democrats release a report outlining Putin's decades-long efforts to undermine democracy and issue warnings that the Kremlin will likely move to influence upcoming U.S. elections.
January 10, 2018: Trump declines to commit to an interview with Mueller, reversing a position he took last year, saying "For 11 months they've had this phony cloud over this administration, over our government . . . it's a Democratic hoax."
January 10, 2018: Manafort and Gates are sued in a New York state court by a Cyprus-based company tied to Deripaska, accusing the men of misappropriating more than $18.9 million that the company had invested in Chorne More as part of an elaborate tax dodge.
January 17, 2018: Sessions becomes the first member of Trump's Cabinet to be interviewed by Mueller's investigators.
January 17, 2018: Mueller's team and the Senate Intelligence Committee are examining hundreds of newly uncovered payments from Kislyak and other Russian diplomats marked as suspicious by U.S. banks that may be connected to the scandal, reports BuzzFeed News.
January 17, 2018: Nader is detained by FBI agents at Washington Dulles Airport en route to Mar-a-Lago where he planned to celebrate the president's first year in office. Nader is served with search warrants and a grand jury subpoena, questioned for two hours and his electronics seized.
January 17, 2018: A PBS-NPR-Marist poll finds that Americans say by a 68 percent to 14 percent margin that Mueller should be allowed to finish his investigation.
January 18, 2018: Mueller and the FBI are investigating whether Torshin illegally funneled money to the NRA to help Trump, reports the McClatchy News Service.
January 18, 2018: The House Intelligence Committee releases a transcript of Simpson's closed-door testimony before the committee. He tells lawmakers, among other things, that Russians "infiltrated" the NRA.
January 18, 2018: House Intelligence Committee Republicans, continuing their pushback and led by Nunes, circulate but do not release a classified memo criticizing the FBI investigation of Russia's election interference. The memo claims that a FISA Court warrant application by the FBI in the fall of 2016 to wiretap Page was improper because it was based, in part, on information in the Steele dossier, which was financed by the Clinton campaign and DNC. Democrats respond that the memo is a political stunt.
January 21, 2018: #SchumerShutdown, the hashtag that Republican leaders and the White House are using to accuse Democrats of causing the government shutdown, becomes the top trending hashtag being promoted by Russian bots and trolls on Twitter.
January 24, 2018: Trump says he would agree to an interview with Mueller while sidestepping the question of whether he would do so under oath.
January 24, 2018: Russian-linked trolls are using Fox News host Sean Hannity's website to bolster the campaign to undermine Mueller, reports Newsweek.
January 25, 2018: Democrats renew calls for legislation to protect Mueller after The New York Times publishes a story that Trump ordered Mueller to be fired in June 2017. Trump denies the story, calling it "fake news."
January 27, 2018: Dowd, convinced that Trump would commit perjury if he talks to Mueller III, stages a practice session in the White House residence to try to make his point.
Dowd peppers Trump with questions about the Russia investigation, provoking stumbles, contradictions and lies until the president eventually loses his cool, provoking a 30-minute rant beginning with "This thing's a goddamn hoax" and ending with "I don’t really want to testify," according to Fear: Trump in the White House by Bob Woodward.
January 29, 2018: McCabe, the frequent target of attacks from Trump, announces he is stepping down immediately. Wray suggests that the departure of McCabe, who was scheduled to retire in March, was in part due to an upcoming FBI inspector general's report about the Clinton email investigation.
January 29, 2018: House Intelligence Committee Republicans, backed by Trump, vote along party lines to release the classified memo.
January 29, 2018: Wray and Rosenstein meet with Kelly at the White House in an effort to prevent release of the classified memo.
January 29, 2018: In a brash assertion of presidential power, a 20-page confidential memo written by Dowd and Sekulow and sent to Mueller contends that the president cannot illegally obstruct any aspect of the Russia investigation because the Constitution empowers him to, "if he wished, terminate the inquiry, or even exercise his power to pardon." The letter quotes selectively from McGahn's February 15, 2017 memo and contradicts it in asserting Trump had not known that Flynn was under investigation.
January 29, 2018: The Trump administration finally accedes to one aspect of a congressional mandate stemming from new sanctions. The administration publishes a list of Russian politicians and oligarchs, but says it has decided not to punish anyone under the new sanctions. The list, for the most part, appears to have been copied from a Forbes magazine ranking of Russian billionaires, and some of the individuals named have been Putin victims.
January 29, 2018: Veselnitskaya and other Russian participants in the June 9, 2016 Trump Tower meeting attempted to enlist a Swiss law enforcement official as a virtual double agent, according to reports in two Swiss newspapers. The interest of Veselnitskaya and the others may have had to do with Veselnitskaya's efforts to weaken or get rid of the Magnitsky Act. A large amount of the funds that Magnitsky had said were stolen in a massive tax fraud scheme are believed to have made their way to Switzerland, information gleaned by Perepilichnyy before his 2012 death under suspicious circumstances. The Swiss agent, identified only as "K," has been fired.
January 31, 2018: Schiff accuses Nunes of making "material changes" to the classified memo before sending it to the White House to approve public release, a move he charges should prevent Trump from releasing it.
January 31, 2018: Trump's campaign and the RNC paid a total of $5.5 in legal bills during 2017, according to a Federal Election Commission (FEC) filing.
February 1, 2018: Although it is highly unusual for a president to advocate the release of classified information, Trump plans to tell Congress he has no objections to releasing the memo without any redactions although the U.S. intelligence community and congressional Democrats oppose its release. Wray reportedly threatens to resign.
February 2, 2018: The four-page classified memo is released.
February 2, 2018: Schiff, who says he has examined the intelligence underlying the FISA application savaged in the classified memo, states in an unreleased 10-page classified response that the memo was politically motivated. Committee Republicans vote against releasing Schiff's response, warning that it might contain too much classified information to permit its release.
February 2, 2018: McFarland, embroiled in the Russia scandal, withdraws her nomination to become ambassador to Singapore.
February 3, 2018: The president tweets that the classified memo "totally vindicates Trump" in the investigation into Russian election interference and campaign collusion.
February 4, 2018: Four Republican members of the House Intelligence Committee, appearing on Sunday talk shows, dispute the classified memo's findings and say it does not vindicate Trump.
February 5, 2018: Grassley releases a heavily redacted version of a memo alleging that Steele misled the FBI that he had sent to the Justice Department on behalf of the Senate Judiciary Committee on January 5.
February 5, 2018: The House Intelligence Committee votes unanimously to release the Schiff response.
February 5, 2018: Lawyers for Trump have advised him against sitting down for an interview with Mueller, reports The New York Times.
February 6, 2018: Tillerson warns that Russia already is interfering in the 2018 midterm elections and the U.S. is inadequately prepared to counter that threat.
February 9, 2018: Trump blocks release of the Schiff response, citing national security concerns although it had been reviewed by the FBI and Justice Department. Democrats denounce the move as politically motivated hypocrisy.
February 9, 2018: Rachel Brand, the number three person at the Justice Department, announces she is stepping down for a private-sector job. NBC News reports Brand wanted to avoid any possibility that she would have to oversee the Russia investigation if Mueller was fired and Rosenstein resigned.
February 13, 2018: In a striking contrast to Trump's view, intelligence agency chiefs tell the Senate Intelligence Committee that Russia is likely to interfere in the midterm elections to sow further political and social divisions.
Week of February 11: Bannon spends 20 hours in interviews with Mueller's team, according to published reports.
February 14, 2018: Russia-linked bots flood Twitter following the Parkland, Florida school shootings with stories arguing that mental health and not guns are to blame.
February 15, 2018: The U.S. joins Britain in formally blaming Russia for a huge cyberattack in June 2017 aimed at Ukraine but crippled computers worldwide.
February 15, 2018: Russian authorities block the website of leading opposition leader Aleksei A. Navalny, as well as his American service providers, Instagram and YouTube, after he refuses a court order to remove a posted video accusing Sergei E. Prikhodko, a high-ranking official, of accepting a bribe from Deripaska.
February 16, 2018: In the first charges directly related to election interference, Mueller indicts 13 Russian nationals and the IRA and two Russian companies for illegally using social media to sow political discord in the 2016 election. These included actions that supported Trump's candidacy and disparaged Clinton. Also charged is Richard Pinedo, a California man who sold bank accounts online to Russian clients. Prosecutors say Pinedo has pleaded guilty to one count of identify fraud and is cooperating.
February 16, 2018: Trump tweets that no members of his campaign were implicated in the indictment: "Russia started their anti-US campaign in 2014, long before I announced that I would run for President. The results of the election were not impacted. The Trump campaign did nothing wrong -- no collusion!"
February 18~19, 2018: Trump, in a nine hour series of angry, defiant and profanity-laced tweets, attacks Mueller for saying the Russian interference effort was intended to push voters toward him and away from Clinton, again tries to shift blame to Barack Obama and the Democrats because Russian interference began before the election, denies he has ever said Moscow was not involved, and attacks the FBI and H.R. McMaster, his national security adviser, for saying Moscow was involved.
February 20, 2018: Mueller charges Van der Zwaan with making false statements to investigators about his interactions with Gates. Van der Zwaan pleads guilty.
February 20, 2018: Sarah Huckabee Sanders, responding to a reporter's question, says Trump now acknowledges that Russia tried to interfere with and influence the election.
February 21, 2018: Democratic congressional leaders propose sending an extra $300 million to the FBI to combat foreign election interference. Republicans propose only a slight boost.
February 22, 2018: New charges are filed against Manafort and Gates by Mueller. Manafort is charged with lying to banks by exaggerating his income to secure millions of dollars in cash loans as part of a decade-long $30 million money laundering scheme as a political consultant for Yanukovych. According to the new charges, Manafort and Gates shielded the money from U.S. tax authorities by moving it through foreign bank accounts.
February 22, 2018: Dowd proposes diverting funds raised by the Patriot Legal Defense Fund in Trump's defense to Manafort and Gates to defray their legal expenses, but backs off when told he has no control over defense fund monies.
February 22, 2018: Nunberg is interviewed by Mueller's team.
February 23, 2018: Gates enters a guilty plea to charges of conspiracy and lying and will cooperate with Mueller's investigation.
February 23, 2018: Trump says that he will leave any decisions regarding Kushner's security clearance to Kelly.
February 24, 2018: The House Intelligence Committee releases a heavily redacted version of the Schiff response that counters Republican claims that top FBI and Justice Department officials abused their powers in spying on Page.
February 24, 2018: Russia hacked hundreds of computers at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea and attempted to place the blame on North Korea by planting false evidence, The Washington Post reports.
February 27, 2018: Officials in at least four countries -- China, Israel, Mexico and the UAE -- have privately discussed ways they can manipulate Kushner by taking advantage of his complex business arrangements, financial difficulties and lack of foreign policy experience, according to intelligence reports. Kushner also had contacts with foreign officials that he did not officially report, reports The Washington Post.
February 27, 2018: Rogers testifies before the Senate Armed Services committee that neither Obama nor Trump had given him new authorities or capabilities to strike at Russian cyber operations.
February 27, 2018: Kushner is stripped of his high-level security clearance, limiting his ability to view highly classified information, including the Presidential Daily Briefing.
February 27, 2018: Hicks is interviewed by the House Intelligence Committee for more than eight hours. She refuses to answer questions about events and conversations that have occurred since Trump took office, but says that her work for the president had occasionally required her to lie, although not about maters related to Russian election interference.
February 27, 2018: The Patriot Legal Defense Fund, which will defray the legal costs of Trump aides who are being investigated, files paperwork with the IRS to operate as a PAC.
February 27, 2018: A CNN poll finds 61 percent of Americans say the Russia scandal is a serious matter, 55 percent say Trump has tried to interfere with Mueller and 60 percent are not confident that he is taking steps to safeguard the U.S. against foreign sabotage of future elections.
February 28, 2018: Manafort pleads not guilty to the new indictment charges. Judge Jackson sets a September 17 trial date.
February 28, 2018: Trump tweets that it's "disgraceful" that Sessions hasn't launched an independent investigation of FISA Court-generated surveillance orders criticized in the Republican congressional pushback against the FBI and instead has asked the Justice Department's inspector general to look into it. Sessions responds that "complaints . . . will be fully and fairly acted upon if necessary."
February 28, 2018: Hicks announces her resignation.
February 28, 2018: Clinton, referring to Rogers' testimony, tweets that "[T]he Russians are still coming. Our intelligence professionals are imploring Trump to act. Will he continue to ignore & surrender, or protect our country?"
February 28, 2018: ExxonMobil abandons a joint exploration venture with Rosneft because of sanctions, saying it is taking an after-tax loss of $200 million.
March 1, 2018: The Senate Intelligence Committee says it has concluded that Nunes and other Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee who were trying to discredit the Steele dossier were behind the leak of private text messages between Richard Burr, the Senate Committee's top Democrat, and a Russian-connected lawyer. Nunes does not deny the charge.
March 1, 2018: Putin, deepening tensions with the U.S., declares in a speech to lawmakers that Russia has developed nuclear weapons that can avoid any missile defense system. He warned that Moscow would consider any nuclear attack on its allies to be an attack on Russia that would lead to an immediate response.
March 2, 2018: Responding to Putin's threat, Lieutenant General Paul Nakasone, Trump's nominee to run the National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command, tells senators at his confirmation hearing that plans are in place to strike back at Moscow for election interference, but they would require Trump's approval. He says the Russians seem unimpressed and "do not think much will happen to them. They don't fear us."
March 2, 2018: A federal grand jury in New York returns an indictment for money laundering against six individuals connected with the Loyal Bank in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. A number of faked invoices introduced by prosecutors in the Manafort trial commencing in July 2018 are connected to the bank.
March 4, 2018: Although the State Department has been given $120 million since 2016 to counter foreign efforts to interfere in elections, it has not spend any of the money, reports The New York Times.
March 4, 2018: Skripal is found slumped on a shopping center bench in Salisbury, England next to his daughter, Yulia. Both are in critical condition. British counterterrorism police believe they may have been poisoned with a nerve agent smeared on the front door handle of their home.
Early March 2018: Tillerson, in response to the Skripal poisoning, orders officials in the State Department's Bureau of Counterterrorism to outline the case for designating Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism under U.S. law, but then instructs that the initiative be dropped, reports ProPublica.
Early March 2018: Mueller's team questions Vekselberg and searches his electronic devices when his private jet lands at a New York area airport.
March 5, 2018: Dowd meets with Mueller to negotiate the terms of an interview with Trump. He says that the president is too busy running the country to sit for an interview, especially if he is not a target of the investigation. Mueller replies that he has to question Trump to determine whether he had criminal intent when he took actions like firing Comey and raises the possibility of subpoenaing Trump to appear before a grand jury. Mueller's team agrees to provide the president's lawyers with more specific information about the subjects that prosecutors want to discuss with the president. Sekulow then compiles a list of 49 questions that the president's lawyers believe he would be asked. The list is reviewed at a second meeting a few days later. After reviewing the list, according to later published reports and Fear: Inside Trump's White House, Dowd becomes even more convinced that allowing the president to be interviewed would be a problem. He later tells him he should avoid an interview because "It's either that or an orange jumpsuit."
March 5, 2018: Nunberg, in a series of accusations and insults during cable news interviews, vows to defy a Mueller grand jury subpoena and dares the special prosecutor to arrest him.
March 6, 2018: Trump says at a news conference that he will not let Russia interfere in the 2018 elections. He says the government is conducting "a very, very deep study, and we're coming out with . . . some very strong suggestions" on how to present interference.
March 6, 2018: Nader is cooperating with Mueller and has given testimony to his grand jury about the influence of foreign money on Trump's political activities, reports The New York Times, which says Nader illegally funneled money to Trump's campaign.
March 6, 2018: House Intelligence Committee Republicans have been secretly feeding Cohen inside information from their Russia investigation, reports Daily Beast.
March 7, 2018: Ignoring his lawyers' advice to avoid doing anything that would create the appearance of interfering with Mueller's investigation, Trump has asked McGahn and Priebus about their interviews with the special counsel, reports The New York Times.
March 7, 2018: Putin lavishes praise on Trump in an interview, but says he is disappointed in the U.S. political system, saying it has been "eating itself up."
March 8, 2018: Manafort pleads not guilty to the original indictment charges brought by a Virginia grand jury. Judge T.S. Ellis sets a July 10 trial date. Because Manafort's attorneys have declined to combine the two cases, he will be required to wear two monitoring devices as part of his home confinement.
March 9, 2018: Nunberg testifies before Mueller's grand jury.
March 9, 2018: Putin, in an interview with NBC News's Megyn Kelly, denies that Russia had anything to do with election interference and the 13 Russians indicted by Mueller, saying "These are not my problems. . . . Maybe they're Ukrainians, Tatars, Jews, just with Russian citizenship . . . How do I know? I don't know."
March 11, 2018: Deputy White House press secretary Raj Shah, appearing on ABC's "This Week," says Trump would have been aware of any collusion if it had occurred, but denies that it did.
March 12, 2018: Contradicting in part U.S. intelligence agencies, House Intelligence Committee Republicans state in a draft report that there is no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, merely poor judgment in some instances. Committee Democrats are not allowed to contribute to the report and vehemently disagree with its conclusions.
March 12, 2018: Trump gloats about the draft report in a tweet.
March 12, 2018: Rosenstein, in an interview with USA Today, says criticism of Mueller is unwarranted. "The special counsel is not an unguided missile" and there is no justification for terminating him, he says.
March 12, 2018: British Prime Minister Theresa May blames Russia for the Skripal poisonings. Media reports identify the nerve agent used as Novichok No. 5.
March 13, 2018: Trump fires Tillerson and replaces him with Pompeo. Gina Hapsel is named to be the new CIA director.
March 14, 2018: Manafort asks the court for a second time that Mueller's indictment against him in Washington be dismissed because the special counsel does not have the authority to bring the charges.
March 15, 2018: The Trump administration imposes new financial sanctions on Russia for government-sponsored hacking and trolls, interfering in the 2016 election and a cyberattack against Ukraine and other countries. The sanctions, which stand in contrast with Trump's reluctance to blame Russia, are characterized as an effort to deter Russia with interfering in the midterm elections but fall well short of the full penalties that Congress authorized nearly a year ago.
March 15, 2018: The Department of Homeland Security and FBI issue a report describing sophisticated Russian government attempts to target U.S. and European power plans, nuclear facilities, airports and other critical infrastructure for cyberattacks.
March 15, 2018: The Trump administration belatedly backs British claims that Russia was responsible for the nerve agent attack on Skripal and his daughter.
March 15, 2018: Mueller subpoenas the Trump Organization to turn over documents, the first known instance of the special counsel demanding records directly relating to Trump's businesses.
March 16, 2018: Sessions fires McCabe 26 hours before he was to retire for what the attorney general says is a lack of candor under oath on several occasions. McCabe declares the firing and Trump's persistent needling of him were intended to undermine Mueller's investigation.
March 16, 2018: The Federal Elections Commission has opened a preliminary inquiry into whether Russian money was funneled through the NRA to the Trump campaign, reports Politico.
March 16, 2018: Cambridge Analytica is suspended by Facebook for failing to delete data it had taken from users of the social network. The New York Times and The Observer of London subsequently report that the firm harvested private information from the Facebook profiles of more than 50 million users without their permission in developing techniques that underpinned its work for the Trump campaign.
March 17, 2018: Trump tweets "Andrew McCabe FIRED . . . A great day for Democracy . . . He knew about all the lies and corruption going on at the highest levels of the FBI!"
March 17, 2018: In a shift of strategy from avoiding criticism of Mueller, Dowd says that Rosenstein should end the special counsel's inquiry immediately because collusion allegations were "manufactured by McCabe's boss James Comey based upon a fraudulent and corrupt dossier."
March 17, 2018: McCabe responds to his dismissal by stating "[T]his attack on my credibility is one part of a larger effort not just to slander me personally, but to taint the FBI, law enforcement, and intelligence professionals more generally.
March 18, 2018: Trump lashes out at Mueller, McCabe and Comey in a tweet: "Why does the Mueller team have 13 hardened Democrats, some big Crooked Hillary supporters, and Zero Republicans? . . . And yet, there is NO COLLUSION!"
March 18, 2018: Facebook draws condemnation and calls for investigations from U.S. and British lawmakers for its role in Cambridge Analytica's massive voter data harvesting.
March 18, 2018: Putin is reelected by an overwhelming margin in a race in which Navalny was barred from running. The pre-ordained victory was guaranteed by voter fraud and a disinformation campaign.
March 19, 2018: Trump continues his attacks on Mueller, tweeting "A total WITCH HUNT with massive conflicts of interest!"
March 19, 2018: Trump adds longtime Washington lawyer Joseph diGenova to take a leading role his legal team. DiGinova has asserted on Fox News that the FBI and Justice Department are framing the president.
March 19, 2018: Cambridge Analytica executives are caught on tape promising an extraordinary package of propaganda strategies to potential clients to help sway elections, including filming opponents in compromising situations with prostitutes and sending someone posing as a wealthy land developer to pose a bribe, while Cambridge Analytica CEO and former Trump consultant Nix was seen talking to undercover reporters from the British news station Channel Four. He said his operatives would never be caught because they work globally using front organizations, report Daily Beast and The New York Times.
March 19, 2018: Flynn, now a cooperating witness for Mueller, had many more unreported conflicts of interest, reports Bloomberg News. These included numerous contacts with Iranian-born businessman Bijan Kian, on whose behalf he pressured former CIA Director James Woolsey to help promote Kian's computer chip company while Flynn was still DIA director and with whom Flynn worked during the presidential transition to set up an intelligence force of private contractors who would report directly to him as Trump's national security adviser, circumventing the CIA.
March 19, 2018: The NRA acknowledges that it accepts donations from foreign entities "as permitted by law," but insists none of that money has ever been used for election purposes, which would be illegal.
March 20, 2018: Trump congratulates Putin on his reelection in a phone call. It is revealed later by the Kremlin that Trump also proposed meeting with Putin at the White House. During the call, Trump ignores warnings from his national security advisers, including briefing materials in all-capital letters stating "DO NOT CONGRATULATE."
March 20, 2018: McCain slams Trump for congratulating Putin for what calls a "sham" victory.
March 20, 2018: Nix is suspended by Cambridge Analytica pending an independent investigation.
Spring 2018: Trump tells McGahn that he wants to order the Justice Department to prosecute Clinton and Comey, according to later published reports. McGahn rebuffs the president, saying that he has no authority to order a prosecution.
March 21, 2018: Brennan states on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" that he believes Russia "may have something on him [Trump] personally," setting off furious speculation about whether the former CIA director was basing his assertion on inside information.
March 22, 2018: Dowd resigns.
March 22, 2018: McMaster, who had unsuccessfully tried to stabilize Trump's chaotic foreign policy operation, is fired and replaced by John R. Bolton, a hard-line former United Nations ambassador.
March 22, 2018: The House Intelligence Committee votes along party lines to formally end its Russia investigation with Republicans saying they found no evidence of collusion.
March 23, 2018: Bolton's super PAC was one of the earliest customers of Cambridge Analytica, which it hired specifically to develop psychological profiles with data harvested from tens of millions of Facebook users, according to media reports.
March 25, 2018: Trump will not hire diGenova because of potential conflicts stemming from clients he and his wife, Virginia Toensing, represent. Trump tweets "Fame & fortune will NEVER be turned down by a lawyer, though some are conflicted. I am very happy with my existing team. Besides, there was NO COLLUSION with Russia, except by Crooked Hillary and the Dems!"
March 26, 2018: The U.S. joins 14 EU countries and 20 other countries in expelling Russians in response to Russia's poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain. Trump orders the expulsion of 60 Russians, including 12 people identified as Russian intelligence officers who have been stationed at the U.N. in New York.
March 26, 2018: With Trump's legal team reduced to essentially just one member -- Sekulow -- leading white-collar lawyers have repeatedly spurned overtures to take over the president's defense, reports The New York Times.
March 27, 2018: Gates was in contact during the campaign with a man believed to be Kilimnik, according to a sentencing brief filled in connection with Van der Zwaan.
March 27, 2018: Manafort asks the court that Mueller's indictment against him in Virginia be dismissed because the special counsel does not have the authority to bring the charges.
March 27, 2018: A defamation lawsuit is filed by Aaron Rich, the brother of Seth Rich, against the Washington Times and individuals who pushed the conspiracy theory that Seth Rich's murder was linked to DNC email thefts and that Aaron Rich had assisted him in the thefts.
March 28, 2018: Homeland security secretary Kirstjen Nielsen warned dozens of foreign diplomats -- including Russian ambassador Anatoly Antonov -- in a recent speech that the U.S. would retaliate if foreign adversaries interfere in coming elections, reports The New York Times.
March 28, 2018: Malloch is stopped by the FBI at Logan Airport in Boston, interrogated about his connections to Stone and WikiLeaks and told he will be interviewed by Mueller's team at a later date.
March 28, 2018: The New York Times reports on Dowd's overtures to lawyers for Flynn and Manafort regarding pardons.
March 29, 2018: Sessions rebuffs a call from Republican leaders to appoint a second special counsel to look into the FBI's handling of its most high-profile investigations, including the Clinton Foundation and Page FISA warrant, and instead orders a review of them.
March 29, 2018: Intensifying its clash with Britain, Europe and the U.S., Russia says it will expel 150 Western diplomats, including 60 Americans, and close the American consulate in St. Petersburg.
April 2018: Solicitor General Neil Francisco, who would become Mueller's new supervisor in the event of a Justice Department shakeup, secures White House approval for an ethics waiver despite being dogged by conflict of interest concerns because he previously worked as a partner at Jones Day, the same law firm that represents Trump’s campaign in the Russia scandal.
April 1, 2018: RT America stops broadcasting in the Washington, D.C. area. It gives having to register as a foreign agent with the Justice Department as the reason.
April 2, 2018: A new court filing reveals Rosenstein's August 2, 2017 authorization for Mueller to investigate whether Manafort worked with Russia on election interference, countering the argument of Manafort's lawyer in a pending lawsuit that Rosenstein had given Mueller a "blank check" and he had overstepped his legal mandate.
April 3, 2018: Van der Zwaan is sentenced to 30 days in jail and fined $20,00o in the first Mueller investigation sentencing.
April 3, 2018: Trump declares that "Nobody has been tougher on Russia than I have" during a White House news conference with the leaders of Baltic states.
April 4, 2018: Sater, who reportedly is cooperating with Mueller's investigation, gives more than six hours of closed-door testimony on to the Senate Intelligence Committee.
April 4, 2018: At a hearing on Manafort's lawsuit against Mueller, Downing indicates that Manafort is no longer challenging Mueller's appointment order or asking that the indictments against Manafort be thrown out. "I don’t really understand what's left to your case," Judge Jackson says.
April 4, 2018: Facebook reveals that 37 million more people might have been exposed in the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal than the 50 million previously thought. It says it will restrict the data it allows outsiders to access on its users.
April 5, 2018: Manafort, using a strategy involving Gates and Kilimnik that later was employed by Russia to use Twitter and Facebook to discredit Clinton and to help Trump win the election, authorized a secret Ukraine-based media operation from 2011-2013 on behalf of Yanukovych using "back ops," "placed" articles in The Wall Street Journal and U.S. websites, and anonymous briefings against Clinton, reports The Guardian.
April 6, 2018: The Trump administration imposes new sanctions on seven of Russia's richest men, including Deripaska and Vekselberg, and 17 top government officials in the latest and most aggressive effort to punish Putin's inner circle for interference in the 2016 election and other Russian aggressions.
April 9, 2018: FBI agents raid Cohen's Manhattan office, apartment and hotel room and seize records related to his relationship with Trump, including making hush money payments to women with whom Trump allegedly had affairs, that may have violated banking and campaign finance laws.
April 9, 2018: Trump erupts in fury over the raids. He accuses the Justice Department of perpetuating a "witch hunt" and lashes out at Mueller, Sessions and Rosenstein.
April 10, 2018: Sanders says Trump has the power to fire Mueller. Top congressional Republicans warn doing so might put his presidency at risk, but reject calls to pass legislation to protect the special counsel.
April 10, 2018: Mueller is investigating a payment made to Trump's foundation by Ukrainian steel magnate and billionaire Victor Pinchuk in return for a 20-minute video speech Trump gave during his campaign, reports The New York Times.
April 10, 2018: Zuckerberg expresses contrition for being "too slow to spot and respond to Russian interference" during two days of congressional testimony.
April 11, 2018: Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Grassley says he wants his panel to vote on a bipartisan bill to prevent the undue firing of special counsels like Mueller. The bill would mandate a 10-day waiting period after an order to fire the special counsel, during which period the firing could be appealed to a three-judge panel and during which time no staff changes could be made to the special counsel's team and no documents could be destroyed.
April 12, 2018: Rosenstein assures Trump during a White House meeting that he is not the target of Mueller's investigation and the president then backs off a threat to fire the deputy attorney general, reports Bloomberg News.
April 12, 2018: Secretary of state nominee Pompeo pledges a tougher line on Russia in testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
April 12, 2018: Pre-publication reviews and commentary begin appearing on A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership, a deeply critical memoir by Comey of his relationship with Trump. The Republican National Committee launches a digital ad campaign and website that brands the former FBI director as "Lyin' Comey."
April 13, 2018: Trump, in a pair of tweets, calls Comey an "untruthful slime ball," a "proven LEAKER & LIAR," and says it was "my great honor to fire."
April 13, 2018: Mueller has evidence that Cohen secretly made a trip to Prague in late-summer 2016 to meet with Russian officials operating under the guise of Rossotrudnichestvo, a Russian Foreign ministry organization, and with hackers, reports the McClatchy News Service. Cohen has denied making the trip, which was detailed in the Steele dossier.
April 13, 2018: Lawyers representing Cohen ask U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood to block the Justice Department from reading documents seized in the multiple FBI raids related to Cohen's decade-long legal representation of Trump. They also raise concerns about attorney-client privilege.
April 13, 2018: The Justice Department inspector general delivers to Congress a scathing report that accuses McCabe of violating the FBI's media policy and then repeatedly misleading investigators about his actions.
April 13, 2018: Nearly seven in 10 adults say they support Mueller's investigation, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll.
Weekend of April 14~15, 2018: Sessions calls McGahn and says he may resign if Trump fires Rosenstein, reports The Washington Post.
April 14, 2018: Over 360 present and former Justice Department employees urge Congress to "swiftly and forcefully respond" should Trump fire Mueller or Rosenstein.
April 15, 2018: Trump continues to rail against Comey, calling him a "slimeball," saying in a pair of early-morning tweets that he belongs in jail for what the president says were lies to Congress and leaks of classified information.
April 15, 2018: Trump, in a court filing, demands an opportunity to review files seized in the Cohen raids, arguing that prosecutors cannot fairly make that determination.
April 15, 2018: Comey tells ABC News's George Stephanolpoulos on "20-20" in his first televised interview since being fired that he believes Trump is "morally unfit to be president." He says that it is "possible" that the Russians have material that could be used to blackmail him and insists that impeachment would just "let the American people off the hook" and said the public is "duty bound" to vote Trump out of office.
April 15, 2018: Trump's reelection campaign has spent more than $834,000 out of $3.9 million on attorney fees this year as the president contends with Mueller's investigation and a legal challenge from adult-film star Stormy Daniels, according to a new FEC filing. The latest figures bring the campaign's total spending on legal fees to nearly $4 million since the president took office.
April 15, 2018: Maxim Borodin, a Russian journalist who recently wrote about Russian mercenaries in Syria, dies from injuries sustained after falling from his fifth-floor balcony in Yekaterinburg on April 12. Friends and associates are skeptical of the official view the death was a suicide.
April 16, 2018: Trump stops a plan to impose additional economic sanctions on Russia for its involvement in Syria, walking back an April 15 announcement by U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley of the new punishment and further underscoring the schism between the president and his national security team.
April 16, 2018: State-sponsored Russian hackers are actively seeking to hijack essential internet networking hardware that could be used in a future offensive, U.S. and U.K. intelligence agencies say.
April 17, 2018: McConnell says he has no intention of letting any bill to protect Mueller to be brought up for a full Senate vote.
April 18, 2018: Eleven House Republicans, complaining that the investigations into Clinton's and Trump's campaign were marked by "dissimilar degrees of zealousness," urge Sessions to prosecute Clinton, Comey, Lynch and more than a half-dozen current or former Justice Department officials.
April 19, 2018: The Justice Department releases 15 pages of redacted and declassified memos by Comey regarding his interactions with Trump, including Trump's repeated efforts to get him to drop the Russia investigation and preoccupation with allegations that he interacted with prostitutes during a November 2013 trip to Moscow.
April 19, 2018: Trump tweets: "James Comey Memos just out and show clearly that there was NO COLLUSION and NO OBSTRUCTION. Also, he leaked classified information. WOW! Will the Witch Hunt continue?"
April 19, 2018: Former New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani and two other former federal prosecutors join Trump's legal team.
April 19, 2018: The Justice Department's inspector general refers his finding that McCabe repeatedly misled investigators to Washington's top federal prosecutor.
April 20, 2018: The DNC files a lawsuit in federal court alleging that it was the victim of a conspiracy by Russian officials, the Trump campaign and WikiLeaks to damage Clinton's campaign. The campaign calls the lawsuit "frivolous" and "without merit."
April 24, 2018: Sessions has opted not to recuse himself from the Cohen investigation, although he may remove himself from certain questions on a case by case basis, reports Bloomberg News.
April 26, 2018: The Senate Judiciary Committee, in a challenge to Trump, advances on a bipartisan vote long-stalled legislation to allow special counsels Mueller to appeal their firing to a panel of judges and possibly be reinstated. Even senators who voted against the legislation warn Trump against trying to dismiss Mueller. Senator Orrin Hatch, the longest-serving Senate Republican, says that "firing Mueller would cause a firestorm and bring the administration's agenda to a halt. It could even result in impeachment."
April 26, 2018: Judge Wood appoints former federal judge Barbara Jones as a special master to review material seized from Cohen, acceding to his request that an independent party review the material before federal prosecutors can access it.
April 27, 2018: Judge Jackson dismisses Manafort's lawsuit.
April 27, 2018: Veselnitskaya acknowledges in an NBC News interview that "I am an informant" who since 2013 has been "actively communicating" with Chaika to thwart the Prevezon money-laundering case.
April 30, 2018: The New York Times reveals the list of 49 questions for Trump that Mueller gave to Dowd in early March. Many center on obstruction of justice.
April 30, 2018: Conservative Republican House allies of Trump in the Freedom Caucus have drafted articles of impeachment against Rosenstein as a "last resort," reports The Washington Post.
May 2018: The Justice Department and FBI begin an investigation of Cambridge Analytica.
May 1, 2018: Trump, in a tweet, says it is "disgraceful" that Mueller's questions were publicly disclosed and noted that there were no questions about collusion. The president also says collusion was a "phony" crime.
May 1, 2018: Rosenstein says that the Department of Justice "is not going to be extorted" and that he has no responsibility to release documents that "nobody has the courage to put their name on" in response to the Freedom Caucus impeachment threat.
May 2, 2018: Trump injects himself into the dispute between conservative House Republicans and Rosenstein, siding with the hard-line lawmakers over his own Justice Department. In a tweet, Trump calls the legal system "rigged" and amplified the lawmakers' complaints that Rosenstein was not moving fast enough to turn over the classified documents they want, including information on a top-secret FBI source whom hardliners claim improperly spied on his 2016 campaign. Justice Department and intelligence agency officials warn that publicly identifying the confidential source would put lives in danger and imperil other operations.
May 2, 2018: In the latest shake-up of Trump's legal team, Cobb is stepping down and is expected to be replaced by veteran white-collar defense attorney Emmet Flood, who served as special counsel in the George W. Bush administration and represented President Clinton during House proceedings to impeach him, reports The New York Times.
May 2, 2018: Cambridge Analytica announces it will cease operations and declare bankruptcy in the U.S. and U.K. because of its loss of clients because of revelations that it had improperly obtained the personal information of 87 million Facebook users.
May 3, 2018: Kushner's ethics disclosure filing misstated the details of two Brooklyn loans, the latest in a long series of errors and omissions on the form, which has been updated at least 40 times since he first submitted it in March 2017, reports Talking Points Memo.
May 4, 2018: During a motion hearing on fraud charges against Manafort, Judge Ellis accuses Mueller of pursuing a fraud case against him to pressure him to "sing" and provide evidence against the president, bolstering Manafort's argument that the charges against him are outside the scope of the special counsel’s authority.
May 7, 2018: Trump tweets that the Russia investigation is being run by Democrats, it is being drawn out to influence the outcome of the midterm elections, and warns that negative material would emerge about the prosecutors leading the inquiry, writing "Just wait 'till the Courts get to see your unrevealed Conflicts of Interest."
May 8, 2018: Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti reveals that Vekselberg funneled more than $500,000 through Columbus Nova, a U.S. firm he controls, into Essential Consultants LLC, the shell company that Cohen had used to make his infamous $130,000 hush payment to the porn star. Among other corporations, Novartis paid Cohen $1.2 million and AT&T $600,000 for promised access to newly elected President Trump in what The New York Times preliminarily estimates to be at least $4.4 million in payments to Essential Consultants.
May 15, 2016: Judge Jackson denies Manafort's request that she throw out the Mueller indictment brought in the criminal case against him in Washington D.C.
May 15, 2016: At Bolton's behest, the Trump administration has eliminated the White House's top cyber policy role, jettisoning a key position created during the Obama presidency to harmonize the government's overall approach to cybersecurity policy and digital warfare, reports Politico. Many experts and former government officials criticize the move as a major step backward for federal cybersecurity policy.
May 16, 2018: The Senate Intelligence Committee, contradicting the findings of its House counterpart, says it has determined that the U.S. intelligence community was correct in assessing that Russia interfered in the 2016 election with the aim of helping Trump. "The Russian effort was extensive, sophisticated, and ordered by President Putin himself for the purpose of helping Donald Trump and hurting Hillary Clinton," said committee chairman Burr and vice chairman Warner. The committee also releases 2,500 pages of testimony about the June 9, 2016 meeting.
May 16, 2018: Documents about payments made by Cohen and publicized by Avenatti were leaked by a whistleblower because it appeared two similar reports were missing from a government database and it was feared they were being hidden from law enforcement, reports The New Yorker.
May 16, 2018: Giuliani, reacting to the Senate Intelligence Committee disclosures, tells Fox News host Laura Ingraham that there is "nothing illegal" about trying to find compromising information about opponents even if the source is Russia.
May 17, 2018: As Mueller's investigation enters its second year, Trump claims that an informant improperly spied on his 2016 campaign and predicts that the ensuing scandal will be "bigger than Watergate!" He tweets "Congratulations America, we are now into the second year of the greatest Witch Hunt in American History . . . and there is still No Collusion and No Obstruction. The only Collusion was that done by Democrats who were unable to win an Election despite the spending of far more money!" Meanwhile, Trump's allies wage an increasingly aggressive campaign to undercut the Russia investigation by exposing the alleged informant.
May 17, 2018: Jeffrey Johai, Manafort's son-in-law, has reached a plea agreement with the Justice Department after pleading guilty to misusing construction loan funds and overdrawing a bank account involving his real estate dealings with Manafort in New York and California, reports Reuters. The plea agreement requires Yohai to cooperate with other investigations, including Mueller's.
May 18, 2018: Three top Senate Democrats request a rare multi-agency inspector-general investigation into the Trump administration's failure to fully implement congressionally-mandated sanctions.
May 18, 2018: Mueller's team has been meeting over the last year with Artemenko concerning his interactions with Trump administration officials, reports Politico.
May 18, 2018: The informant is a retired American professor who has done work for the FBI and CIA, report The Washington Post and New York Times, whose identity is withheld by the newspapers, say he separately approached Page, Clovis and Papadopolous over a months-long period in 2016 in an effort to ascertain Russia's influence in the campaign. The Daily Caller identifies the informant as Stefan Halper.
May 18, 2018: Skripal is released from a British hospital amidst reports that he appears to have been working in recent years with intelligence officers in the Czech Republic and Estonia, and a later report he was advising agents in Spain, which is locked in a pitched battle with Russian organized crime groups, some with ties to the Russian government.
May 20, 2018: The New York Times publishes a story on the August 3, 2016 Trump Tower meeting involving Zamel and Nader.
May 20, 2018: In a six-part tweetstorm, Trump lashes out at his perceived enemies, writing "Things are really getting ridiculous. The Failing and Crooked (but not as Crooked as Hillary Clinton) @nytimes has done a long & boring story indicating that the World's most expensive Witch Hunt has found nothing on Russia & me so now they are looking at the rest of the World!" Trump later tweets that he will "demand" that the Justice Department look into whether the Obama administration asked that the FBI spy on his campaign.
May 20, 2018: Under pressure from Trump, the Justice Department asks its inspector general to assess whether political motivation tainted the FBI investigation into ties between Russia and Trump’s campaign.
May 21, 2018:. A new cache of emails reveals an ambitious, secretive lobbying effort by Elliot Broidy, a top fundraiser for Trump, and Nader to isolate Qatar and undermine the Pentagon's longstanding relationship with the Gulf country, reports The AP.
May 21, 2018: Broidy's security firm, Circinus LLC, has secured at least $800 million in foreign defense contracts since Trump took office and Broidy began advocating for outcomes favorable to the countries Circinus lists as clients, reports Daily Beast.
May 21, 2018: In a brazen assertion of presidential authority over the Russia investigation, the White House brokers an agreement with intelligence and law enforcement officials that will allow Republican congressional leaders to be briefed on some of the most highly classified information related to the Russia investigation, including information pertaining to Halper. It is announced later that Democrats also will be briefed.
May 21, 2018: Brad Bauman, an unpaid spokesperson for the Seth Rich family, files a defamation suit against several Fox News-related individuals whom he says smeared him as a DNC "hitman" who had been "assigned" to cover up Rich's death.
May 22, 2018: Republican lawmakers introduce legislation to approve a second special counsel to investigate the Justice Department's and FBI's handling of high-profile investigations.
May 22, 2018: Evgeny "Gene" Freidman, Cohen's one-time business partner, reaches a plea deal on tax fraud charges with New York state prosecutors and will cooperate with the government in its Cohen investigation.
May 23, 2018: Kushner has been granted the high-level security clearance he lost in February, the White House announces.
May 23, 2018: Cohen met with Vekselberg multiple times, reports The New York Times.
May 24, 2018: Flood and Kelly appear at the start of two classified briefings requested by Republican and Democratic members of Congress to review sensitive material about the FBI's use of Halper, infuriating Democrats. Trump's representatives leave the meetings after stating that they wanted "to relay the president's desire for as much openness as possible under the law."
May 25, 2018: The Justice Department warns that a global network of hundreds of thousands of routers are under the control of the Sofacy Group, also known as APT 28 and "Fancy Bear," and directed by the GRU, and have been affected with malware.
May 27, 2018: Schiff, appearing on ABC News's "This Week," calls on voters to "throw the bums out" of Congress whom he has accused of trying to help Trump undermine the special counsel's investigation."
May 28, 2018: The Restless Wave, McCain's final book, is published. He writes that "Trump seems to vary from refusing to believe what Putin is doing to just not caring about it. . . . And some House Republicans investigating Russian interference seem more preoccupied with their own conspiracy theories than with a real conspiracy by a foreign enemy to defraud the United States."
May 29, 2018: Giuliani says that Trump will not agree to an interview with Mueller until the special counsel allows the president's legal team to review documents related to the FBI’s use of a source in the Trump campaign.
May 29, 2018: Gowdy, appearing on "CBS This Morning," dismisses the notion that the FBI had a spy in the Trump campaign and said the FBI did what it "should have done" in using Halper.
May 29, 2018: Arkady Babchenko, a fierce critic of the Putin regime and prominent Russian war correspondent, shows up alive at a press conference in Kiev one day after he was reportedly shot and killed in the same city. Ukraine's chief of security services, Vasyl Gritsak, said Babchenko had faked his own death as a ruse to foil a real plot against his life by the Kremlin.
May 30, 2018: Trump, contradicting himself, tweets "Not that it matters but I never fired James Comey because of Russia! The Corrupt Mainstream Media loves to keep pushing that narrative, but they know it is not true!"
May 30, 2018: Special Master Jones turns over to Cohen case prosecutors one million files from three of his cellphones seized in the April 9 raids.
June 2018: U.S. officials intercept communications showing that Russia is working to undermine an agreement between Greece and Macedonia that would have paved the way for Macedonia to join NATO. Russia, which sees that as a major threat on its border, worked to defeat a referendum on the deal, the result of which was inconclusive. American officials turn over the intercepts to the Greek government, which makes a rare break with Moscow, expelling two Russian diplomats and barring the entry of two more.
June 2, 2018: In a brash assertion of presidential power, a 20-page letter written by Dowd and Sekulow and sent to Mueller in early January contends that the president cannot illegally obstruct any aspect of the Russia investigation because the Constitution empowers him to, "if he wished, terminate the inquiry, or even exercise his power to pardon," reports The New York Times.
June 2, 2018: In response to a New York Times story on the January 29 confidential memo, Trump tweets "There was No Collusion with Russia (except by the Democrats). When will this very expensive Witch Hunt Hoax ever end? So bad for our Country. Is the Special Counsel/Justice Department leaking my lawyers letters to the Fake News Media? Should be looking at Dems corruption instead?"
June 3, 2018: Giuliani presses Trump's expansive view of executive power on two TV news shows, saying that the president probably has the sweeping constitutional authority to pardon even himself. He adds that Trump "has no intention of pardoning himself, but he probably — not to say he can't" would not do so because the political backlash could lead to impeachment.
June 4, 2018: Trump tweets "As has been stated by numerous legal scholars, I have the absolute right to PARDON myself, but why would I do that when I have done nothing wrong? In the meantime, the never ending Witch Hunt, led by 13 very Angry and Conflicted Democrats (& others) continues into the mid-terms!"
June 4, 2018: Mueller's prosecutors accuse Manafort of attempting to tamper with witnesses.
June 6, 2018: Cambridge Analytica director Brittany Kaiser apparently visited Assange following the 2016 election and claims to have channelled cryptocurrency payments and donations to WikiLeaks, reports The Guardian.
June 6, 2018: House Speaker Ryan says that the FBI did nothing wrong by using Halper to contact members of the Trump campaign, contradicting Trump's assertions of a broad conspiracy by federal law enforcement.
June 8, 2018: Trump arrives at the G7 conference in Quebec and calls for reinstating Russia to the group.
June 8, 2018: Mueller brings new obstruction charges against Manafort and Kilimnik is charged with obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice. The special prosecutor alleges Manafort and Kilimnik were tampering with witnesses after Eastern European journalists Alan Friedman and Eckart Sager revealed that in late February they had been contacted as part of a scheme to try to shape and coordinate the accounts of former business partners given to prosecutors that were, in part, the basis for the original indictments.
June 11, 2018: The Treasury Department imposes a new round of sanctions on Russia on Monday, escalating its response to Russian cyberwarfare. The sanctions target five Russian companies and three individuals, some of whom are accused of directly supporting the FSB in its efforts to carry out cyberattacks.
June 11, 2018: Ivanka Trump and Kushner brought in at least $82 million in outside income while serving as senior White House advisers during 2017, according to financial disclosure forms. The filings show how the couple are collecting immense sums from numerous enterprises, an extraordinary income flow that ethics experts warn could create potential conflicts of interests.
June 14, 2018: Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz concludes in a 500-page report that Comey was "insubordinate" in his handling of the Clinton email investigation. Horowitz does not challenge the decision not to prosecute Clinton and finds that decision was not a result of political bias.
June 14, 2018: Giuliani tells Fox News that "Mueller should be suspended and honest people should be brought in, impartial people to investigate these people like Peter Strzok. Strzok should be in jail by the end of next week."
June 14, 2018: Nunes tells Fox News Ingraham that "good FBI agents" told him about the Weiner laptop in late September 2016, a month before Comey sent a letter to Congress stating that the FBI had reopened the Clinton email investigation because of emails found on the laptop.
June 14, 2018: New York state Attorney General Barbara Underwood files suit against Trump and his three eldest children alleging "persistently illegal conduct" at the president's personal charity, the Donald J. Trump Foundation. Underwood says Trump repeatedly misused the nonprofit to pay off his businesses' creditors, to decorate one of his golf clubs and to stage a multimillion dollar giveaway at his 2016 campaign events. She asks a state judge to dissolve the foundation, that its remaining $1 million in assets be distributed to other charities, and that Trump be forced to pay at least $2.8 million in restitution and penalties.
June 15, 2018: Trump tells "Fox and Friends" that the Justice Department IG's report showed "criminal" behavior by Comey although it made no such claim.
June 15, 2018: Judge Jackson revokes Manafort's bail orders him to prison on witness-tampering charges to await trial.
June 15, 2018: Asked about Manafort, Trump says he had "nothing to do with our campaign" despite him having been campaign chairman. "I feel a little badly about it."
June 15, 2018: Data Propria, a new company run by former officials at Cambridge Analytica, has been quietly working for Trump's 2020 re-election effort, reports The AP.
June 17, 2018: The Pentagon has empowered the U.S. Cyber Command to take a far more aggressive approach to defending the nation against cyberattacks, reports The New York Times.
June 24, 2018: Although the nation's top intelligence officials say Russia is trying to interfere in the midterm elections, Republican and Democratic lawmakers say the Trump administration is keeping them in the dark about whether the U.S. is ready, reports Politico.
June 28, 2018: A new court filing by Mueller reveals an additional $10 million loan made to Manafort by Deripaska and information from a source that Deripaska helped fund Manafort's Ukrainian work when it began in 2005-06.
June 28, 2018: The House votes along party lines to give the Justice Department seven days to produce sensitive documents about the Russia investigation as conservative Republicans pointedly accuse investigation leaders of hiding information from them to protect their own interests. In House Judiciary Committee testimony, Rosenstein denies the allegation.
July 2, 2018: Cohen, in an interview with ABC News's George Stephanopoulos, says "To be crystal clear, my wife, my daughter and my son, and this country have my first loyalty." He refuses to declare loyalty to Trump, hints he could pose a danger to the president and says he is terminating his joint defense agreement with him.
July 3, 2018: In yet another strong rebuke to Trump, the Senate Intelligence Committee backs the intelligence community's assessment that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to aid Trump and is continuing its efforts to undermine U.S. democracy.
July 3, 2018: A federal judge dismisses an invasion-of-privacy lawsuit by two Democratic Party donors and a former party staff member against the Trump campaign and Stone, saying that their allegation that the campaign and Stone conspired with Russian hackers was too flimsy for the suit to proceed.
July 4, 2018: British authorities announce that Charlie Rowley and Dawn Sturgess, inadvertent victims who were sickened on July 1 in the town of Amesbury, had been poisoned by Novichok No. 5 after visiting nearby Salisbury, including a spot near where Skripal and his daughter were stricken.
July 6, 2018: Trump's lawyers, shifting to an openly combative stance, set new conditions on an interview with Mueller and say that the chances that the president would be voluntarily questioned are growing increasingly unlikely. Giuliani says the special counsel needs to prove before Trump would agree to an interview that he has evidence that the president committed a crime and that his testimony is essential to completing the investigation.
July 6, 2018: The Justice Department formally responds to a House Republican resolution demanding sensitive documents, saying it has "substantially complied" with requests.
July 8, 2018: Sturgess dies.
July 10, 2018: Giuliani continues to work on behalf of foreign clients both personally and through his namesake security firm while serving as Trump's personal attorney — an arrangement experts say raises conflict-of-interest concerns and could run afoul of federal ethics laws, reports The Washington Post.
July 12, 2018: Asked at a NATO ministers meeting in Brussels how he would respond if Putin denied Russia's interference in the 2016 election and likelihood it will interfere in the midterm elections, Trump waves the question away. "I mean, look, he may [yet again deny election interference]. You know, what am I going to do if -- he may deny it. I mean, it's one of those things. So all I can do is say, 'Did you?' and 'Don’t do it again.' "
July 12, 2018: The Trump administration rebuffs concerns among intelligence and law enforcement officials and orders that more lawmakers be given access to classified information about Halper, reports The New York Times.
July 12, 2018: Strzok, undercutting hostile House Judiciary Committee Republicans, testifies that in the summer of 2016, he "was one of a handful of people who knew the details of Russian election interference and its possible connections with members of the Trump campaign. This information had the potential to derail, and quite possibly, defeat Mr. Trump. But the thought of exposing that information never crossed my mind."
July 12, 2018: Kushner lacks the security clearance level required to review some of the government's most sensitive secrets, reports The Washington Post, which says that when White House security officials granted him a permanent clearance in late May, he was granted only "top secret" status — a level that does not allow him to see some of the country's most closely guarded intelligence.
July 13, 2018: Mueller indicts 12 GRU intelligence officers. They are accused with engaging in a sustained effort to hack the computer networks of the DNC, other Democratic organizations, state election boards and especially the Hillary Clinton campaign, which it did with lethal efficiency through the summer and fall of 2016, often surreptitiously using computer infrastructure within the U.S.
July 13, 2018: Trump, visiting Britain, responds angrily to the new indictments, repeats his "witch hunt" assertion and blames Obama for the hacking.
July 15, 2018: Trump's advisers provide him with some 100 pages of briefing materials aimed at laying out a tough posture toward Putin when they hold a summit meeting in Helsinki, Finland, but the president will ignore most of it.
July 15, 2018: In advance of the summit, Trump congratulates Putin for the "brilliant success" of hosting the World Cup, asked by a reporter to name America's greatest foe cites the European Union, blames hostilities between the U.S. and Russia on the U.S. and repeats his attacks on Mueller and the FBI.
July 15, 2018: Butina is arrested in Washington, D.C. and charged by the Justice Department with trying to broker two secret meetings between Trump and Putin during the campaign and seeking to infiltrate U.S. political groups. These include an unnamed "gun rights organization" widely believed to be the NRA while she was having an affair with an American believed to be Erickson. She appears in U.S. District Court and is ordered held without bond by Magistrate Deborah A. Robinson. The charge is brought by national security prosecutors, not Mueller.
July 15, 2018: British authorities say the GRU may be responsible for importing the Novichok 5 that poisoned Skripal and four others.
July 16, 2018: Trump meets privately with Putin in Helsinki. Trump later says the two discussed Russian interference, although the Russian leader denied that his government tried to sabotage the election, Trump refuses to rebuke Putin and say whether he believes U.S. intelligence or Moscow. His responses provoke a global outcry and find few supporters in the Republican-controlled Congress.
July 16, 2018: The Butina charge is made public several hours after the Helsinki summit concludes.
July 17, 2018: Back in Washington, Trump claims he misspoke and meant to say "I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be Russia" behind election interference while acknowledging for the first time that the election was attacked by Moscow.
July 18, 2018: Trump offers a fresh defense of his summit with Putin in tweets claiming that his widely panned news conference afterward actually was appreciated by "many people at the higher ends of intelligence." He later contradicts his own intelligence chief, saying Russia is no longer targeting the U.S. The White House then denies he said that. And then adding still more confusion, he says in an interview on "CBS Evening News" that he had been firm with Putin, telling him "We're not going to have it [interference], and that’s the way it's going to be."
July 18, 2018: Trump says he is open to a proposal by Putin to question American citizens, including a former ambassador to Moscow, Michael McFaul, in return for giving the U.S. access to the 12 indicted GRU intelligence officers.
July 18, 2018: Russian officials offer a string of assertions about what Trump and Putin achieved, saying "important verbal agreements" were reached at the Helsinki summit. Antonov says the agreements involve keeping the New Start and INF nuclear missile agreements, major bilateral arms control treaties whose futures have been in question, and proposals on how the two countries could cooperate on Syria. However, most senior U.S. military officials have little or no information.
July 18, 2018: Wray, speaking at the Aspen Security Forum, says that Russia "continues to engage in malign influence operations to this day" and suggests that he has considered resigning.
July 18, 2018: Prosecutors say Butina was working as a covert agent in the U.S., traded sex as part of a secret influence campaign and was recently in contact with a suspected Russian intelligence official believed to be Torshin. It is later revealed that Konstantin Nikolaev, a billionaire oligarch with ties to Russian military and intelligence groups, has helped fund her. Magistrate Robinson orders Butina held until trial during a preliminary hearing where she enters a not-guilty plea.
July 19, 2018: Trump tweets that he looks forward to a second summit meeting with Putin, possibly in Washington in the fall, saying "The Summit with Russia was a great success, except with the real enemy of the people, the Fake News Media."
July 19, 2018: The White House, facing a storm of criticism, rejects Putin's proposal to question American citizens in return for giving the U.S. access to 12 indicted GRU intelligence officers. The Senate subsequently votes 98-0 to approve a resolution introduced by Schumer that the U.S. should "refuse to make available any current or former diplomat, civil servant, political appointee, law enforcement official, or member of the Armed Forces of the United States for questioning by the government of Vladimir Putin."
July 19, 2018: Nielsen, also speaking at the Aspen Security Forum, breaks with intelligence agencies and insists that there is no evidence that Russia interfered in the election to help Trump win.
July 19, 2018: House Intelligence Committee Republicans block a Democratic move to subpoena the interpreter from the Helsinki summit to testify about the private talks between Trump and Putin.
July 19, 2018: New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says the state's tax-collecting agency has opened its own investigation into the Donald J. Trump Foundation. He says it is separate from the long-running probe of the foundation by the state attorney general.
July 19, 2018: Russia provides additional details of what it said were agreements made at the summit, shaping a narrative favoring the Kremlin's own policy prescriptions with no confirmation or alternative account from the Trump administration.
July 20, 2018: As Trump doubles down on Russia, he is at odds with moves by a national security establishment following a radically different Russia policy. This includes the Pentagon's declaration that it will provide $200 million in assistance to Ukraine to help fight Russian-controlled separatists as Mattis states "Russia should suffer consequences for its aggressive, destabilizing behavior and its illegal occupation of Ukraine."
July 20, 2018: Cohen secretly recorded a conversation with Trump two months before the election in which they discussed payments to former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who has said she had an affair with Trump, reports The New York Times. It is subsequently reported that the FBI seized 12 tapes recorded by Cohen without Trump's knowledge and about 100 tapes overall during an April 9 raid on Cohen's office as part of its investigation into paying women to tamp down embarrassing news stories about Trump ahead of the election. On one recording, Trump expresses concern about information regarding sensitive personal secrets held by David Pecker, an ally and chairman of American Media Inc. (AMI), which owns the National Enquirer. "Maybe he gets hit by a truck," Trump says of Pecker, who worked with Trump and Cohen to buy and bury stories of Trump's affairs, a practice known as "catch and kill."
July 21, 2018: Unredacted portions of documents related to the FISA Court-approved wiretapping of Page show that the FBI told the intelligence court that Page "has established relationships with Russian government officials, including Russian intelligence officers"; that the bureau believed "the Russian government's efforts are being coordinated with Page and perhaps other individuals associated with" Trump's campaign; and that Page "has been collaborating and conspiring with the Russian government." The documents were released in response to a Freedom of Information request by news organizations.
July 21, 2018: Trump claims in a tweet that the Page documents show that the Justice Department and FBI misled the FISA Court. In reality, the documents' release is an unintended consequence of Trump's decision in February over the objections of the FBI to declassify a memo by House Republicans that portrayed the Page surveillance as scandalous because the released documents show that claim was false.
July 21, 2018: Trump warns that Cohen will face legal consequences for the secret taping.
July 22, 2018: Trump reverses course yet again, tweeting "So President Obama knew about Russia before the Election. Why didn't he do something about it? Why didn’t he tell our campaign? Because it is all a big hoax, that's why, and he thought Crooked Hillary was going to win!!!" He again falsely claims that the FBI investigation began with the Steele dossier.
July 23, 2018: In an unprecedented use of presidential authority to punish political rivals, Trump is considering stripping a half-dozen former national security officials of their security clearances, including Brennan, Clapper, Comey, Rice, McCabe and former NSA Director Hayden, all of whom have been critical of the president.
July 24, 2018: Giuliani says that questions about obstruction of justice and Trump's firing of Comey must be omitted before the president agrees to an interview with Mueller.
July 24, 2018: Trump claims, without evidence, that the Kremlin will support Democrats in the midterm elections, debuting a new line on Russian interference.
July 24, 2018: Sessions repeats the phrase "lock her up" during a speech to conservative high school students in Washington, chuckling as they began a chant that Trump supporters used during the campaign to call for jailing Clinton.
July 24, 2018: Ivanka Trump shuts down her fashion brand.
July 25, 2018: The White House walks back an invitation for Putin to visit Washington this fall. "The president believes that the next bilateral meeting with President Putin should take place after the Russia witch hunt is over, so we’ve agreed that it will be after the first of the year," Bolton says in a statement.
July 25, 2018: Pompeo tells skeptical members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the Trump administration's punitive actions against Moscow are "proof" it is tough on Russia. Pompeo repeatedly declines to provide specifics about the one-on-one meeting between Trump and Putin in Helsinki and angrily dismisses questions about the deep gulf between the administration's policies on Russia and Trump's own warm statements about Mr. Putin.
July 25, 2018: The White House updates its official transcript of the Trump-Putin post-summit press conference to show that Putin admitted to a reporter that he did want Trump to win the 2016 election. The key exchange was originally omitted from the original transcript, which the White House attributed to a muffled audio recording error, not a "malicious" attempt to hide Putin's admission.
July 25, 2018: House Republicans, led by Representatives Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan, introduce a resolution calling for the impeachment of Rosenstein in a dramatic escalation in the battle over Mueller's investigation.
July 26, 2018: Cohen says he was present when Trump learned of the June 9, 2016 Trump Tower meeting two days before it was held and approved of it, reports CNN.
July 26, 2018: Ryan says he opposes the Rosenstein impeachment effort, probably dooming it.
July 27, 2018: Putin invites Trump to visit him in Moscow.
July 27, 2018: Trump chairs a meeting of his most senior national security advisers to discuss his administration's effort to safeguard the midterm elections from Russian interference, the first such meeting he has led on the matter, but no new directives to counter or deter the threat are issued.
July 27, 2018: Trump, responding to Cohen's allegation regarding the June 9, 2016 meeting, tweets that "the ridiculous news that the highly conflicted Robert Mueller and his gang of 13 Angry Democrats obviously cannot find Collusion."
July 30, 2018: Mueller indicates in a letter that he is willing to reduce the number of questions his investigators would pose to Trump in an interview, renewing negotiations with his lawyers about a presidential sit-down after an extended standoff. Mueller's team suggests that investigators would reduce by nearly half the number of questions they would ask about obstruction of justice.
July 30, 2018: The Trump administration eases pressure on Rusal, which is controlled by Deripaska, and is considering removing sanction against it altogether. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says sanctions are hurting the "hardworking people of Rusal."
July 30, 2018: Nunes, surreptitiously recorded at a Republican fundraiser, acknowledges that he knows collusion is illegal and declares that preserving a Republican majority in the House is necessary to protect Trump.
July 31, 2018: The first of Manafort's two trials -- this one of tax and bank fraud -- begins in Alexandria. In opening statements, Mueller prosecutor Uzo Asonye says Manafort failed to pay taxes on some of the many millions he made working in Ukraine, hid some of the money in shell companies and then lied to banks to get loans when those payments stopped, while defense lawyer Thomas Zehnle tries to deflect blame to Gates, the government's star witness.
July 31, 2018: Facebook announces at a congressional hearing that it has identified a coordinated political influence campaign, with dozens of inauthentic accounts and pages that are believed to be engaging in political activity, ahead of the midterm elections. It has been unable to tie the accounts to Russia, but Russia was possibly involved.
July 31, 2018: Federal investigators are scrutinizing $300,000 in suspicious bank transactions between Butina and Erickson possibly involving money laundering, reports BuzzFeed News.
July 31, 2018: Three Russian journalists -- Orkhan Dzhemal, Alexander Rastorguyev and Kirill Radchenko -- investigating ties between Russian oligarch Yevgeny Prigozhin, who funded the IRA, and Russian mercenaries known as the Wagner Group are found dead in the Central African Republic, reportedly after being assassinated.
Early August 2018: Nunes, investigating Steele, flies to London where he unsuccessfully tries to meet with the heads of three British intelligence agencies -- MI5, MI6 and GCHQ.
August 1, 2018: Mueller has referred to federal prosecutors in New York investigations into possible illegal foreign lobbying involving three Washington lobbyists linked to Manafort, reports The New York Times. They are Gregory Craig, who served as the White House counsel under Obama; former Representative Vin Weber, a Minnesota Republican; and Tony Podesta, whose brother, John, was Clinton's 2016 campaign chairman.
August 1, 2018: The Senate Intelligence Committee, in a letter to Assange, asks him to appear for questioning.
August 2, 2018: U.S. counter-intelligence investigators have discovered a suspected Russian spy who had been working undetected in the heart of the American embassy in Moscow for more than a decade
and was found to be communicating with FSB agents. The Russian national had been hired by the Secret Service and had access to the agency's intranet and email systems, which gave her a potential window into highly confidential material.
August 2, 2018: Coats and other national security officials warn that Russia continues to target U.S. elections, but announce no new policies and in some instances do not directly answer questions about what particular guidance or orders they were given to counteract Russian moves. Meanwhile, Coats states that "I'm not in a position to either understand fully or talk about what happened in Helsinki."
August 2, 2018: A bipartisan group of senators unveil legislation that would impose aggressive new sanctions on Russia in the latest effort to push congressional leaders to intensify punitive measures against would-be election hackers. The move symbolizes their growing frustration with the White House.
August 2, 2018: Trump is pushing his lawyers to try once again to reach an agreement with Mueller about him sitting for an interview, flouting their advice that he should not answer investigators' questions, The New York Times reports. Trump has told advisers he is eager to meet with investigators to clear himself of wrongdoing and believes he can convince investigators of his belief that their inquiry is a "witch hunt."
August 3, 2018: Kushner and his father get a cash infusion from Brookfield Asset Management, which will pay the rent on 666 Fifth Avenue for 99 years, removing a $1.4 billion mortgage on the office portion of the troubled property.
August 5, 2018: Trump, in a series of tweets, offers his most definitive public acknowledgment that Donald Jr. met with a Kremlin-aligned lawyer on June 9, 2016 to "get information on an opponent," but defends the meeting as "totally legal and done all the time in politics" and continues to insist he did not know about it.
August 6, 2018: Giuliani reiterates that questions about obstruction of justice and Trump's firing of Comey must be omitted before the president agrees to an interview with Mueller. He says a letter to that effect will be sent to the special prosecutor, but the letter will be a continuation of negotiations rather than a formal rejection of Mueller's request.
August 8, 2018: As expected, Trump's lawyers reject Mueller's latest terms for an interview, countering with an offer that suggested a narrow path for answering questions
August 8, 2018: The Trump administration will impose new sanctions on Russia that will have a significant impact on trade in response to the Skripal poisoning under a 1991 law on biological and chemical weapons use that requires the president to impose sanctions.
August 8, 2018: Republican Senator Rand Paul, visiting Russia, delivers a letter from Trump to Putin that Paul says "emphasized the importance of further engagement in various areas, including countering terrorism, enhancing legislative dialogue and resuming cultural exchanges."
August 9, 2018: Russia slams the new sanctions as illegal and repeats that it had nothing to do with the Skripal poisoning as the ruble weakens and Russian stocks plunge.
August 10, 2018: Pompeo phones Lavrov to ask that they meet before tougher sanctions take effect in order to open a constructive dialogue and break the cycle of tit-for-tat sanctions that the Kremlin has decried as ruinous to bilateral relations. Lavrov agrees to a meeting.
August 10, 2018: FBI Deputy Director David Bowditch, apparently overruling the bureau’s Office of Professional Responsibility, which had recommended a 60-day suspension and a demotion for Strzok, buckles under political pressure and fires him outright following months of Trump tweets and conservative Republican attacks.
August 10, 2018: The Trump administration has backtracked on easing pressure on Rusal, reports The New York Times.
August 10, 2018: Judge Howell has ruled that Andrew Miller, a longtime Stone associate, be held in contempt of court because of his refusal to testify before a Mueller grand jury, The Washington Post reports.
August 11, 2018: Trump escalates his attacks on Sessions, tweeting that the attorney general is "scared stiff" over misleading reports in the conservative media that a Justice Department official and Steele continued to meet after the FBI stopped using him.
August 12, 2018: Reversing himself, Giuliani says Trump and Comey had no conversation about Flynn.
August 13, 2018: Manafort prosecutors rest their case after calling 27 witnesses over 10 days.
August 13, 2018: Federal Judge Dabney Friedrich rules that Mueller's investigation is constitutional and legitimate, the fourth federal judge to do so, in rejecting an effort by one of the Russian companies indicted by the special counsel in February to end his investigation.
August 14, 2018: Manafort's lawyers rest their case without calling any witnesses.
August 15, 2018: Closing arguments are presented at the Manafort trial.
August 15, 2018: Trump revokes Brennan's security clearance, citing what he calls the former CIA director's "erratic" behavior. He tells the Wall Street Journal that he acted because Brennan once led a "rigged witch hunt."
August 15, 2018: Giuliani says that he and Trump's other lawyers are preparing to oppose a potential subpoena from Mueller for a Trump interview by drafting a rebuttal that could set off a dramatic fight all the way to the Supreme Court.
August 16, 2018: The Manafort jury begins deliberations.
August 16, 2018: Brennan strikes back at Trump, calling the president's claims of "no collusion" with Russia to influence the 2016 election "hogwash" and arguing that he was trying to silence anyone who would dare challenge him.
August 16, 2018: Trump has told advisers he is eager to strip more security clearances as part of an escalating attack against foes who have criticized him or played a role in the Russian scandal investigation, reports The Washington Post. Over the past 19 months, Trump has fired or threatened to take actions against nearly a dozen current and former officials associated with the investigation.
August 16, 2018: Thirteen former leaders of the CIA and FBI going back to Nixon, including Robert Gates, who served under Bush and Obama, release a statement backing Brennan and denouncing Trump.
August 16, 2018: Retired Admiral William McRaven, head of the Special Operations Command during the 2011 killing of Osama bin Laden, dares the president in a Washington Post opinion piece to revoke his security clearance as he had Brennan's, writing that "Through your actions, you have embarrassed us in the eyes of our children, humiliated us on the world stage and, worst of all, divided us as a nation."
August 17, 2018: Mueller recommends that Papadopoulos be jailed for up to six months, saying he "caused damage" to his investigation by misleading investigators about the "timing, extent and nature" of his meetings with Russian operatives, including helping Mifsud to leave the U.S. without being detained.
August 17, 2018: Trump defends Manafort, telling reporters that "It's very sad what they've done to him." He is quiet on a possible pardon.
August 17, 2018: The Justice Department is investigating whether Broidy sought to sell his influence with the Trump administration by offering to deliver U.S. government actions for foreign officials in exchange for tens of millions of dollars, reports The Washington Post. Prosecutors are scrutinizing a plan that Broidy allegedly developed to try to persuade the Trump government to extradite a Chinese dissident back to his home country, a move sought by Chinese President Xi Jinping.
August 18, 2018: McGahn has cooperated extensively with Mueller, reports The New York Times. The cooperation began in part as a result of a decision by Trump's first team of criminal lawyers -- Dowd and Cobb -- but it is not clear that the president understands the extent to which McGahn has cooperated with the special counsel, including providing potentially damaging information as part of his own strategy to protect his own legal liability.
August 19, 2018: Trump attacks The Times story on McGahn, tweeting that Mueller makes the late Senator Joseph McCarthy, who falsely claimed that Communists had infiltrated the government, "look like a baby."
August 19, 2018: Giuliani, appearing on NBC News's "Meet the Press," says that he will not allow Mueller to rush Trump into an interview because investigators could try to catch the president in a lie based on their version of the facts. "Truth isn't truth," Giuliani says.
August 19, 2018: Federal authorities investigating Cohen for bank and tax fraud have zeroed in on well over $20 million in loans obtained by taxi businesses that he and his family own, reports The New York Times.
August 19, 2018: Bolton says on ABC News's "This Week" that in addition to Russia, U.S. officials are concerned that China, Iran and North Korea will try to interfere in the midterm elections.
August 20, 2018: Microsoft says the notorious "Fancy Bear" hacking group has created phony versions of websites meant to look like real sites used by the Senate and Washington nonprofit organizations. It says the Hudson Institute, a conservative Washington think tank active in investigations of corruption in Russia, is among those targeted.
August 20, 2018: Trump, further ramping up his rhetoric, refers to Mueller's lawyers as "thugs" in series of tweets and accuses them of trying to affect the midterm elections. Later, in an Oval Office interview with Reuters, he declared that he could run the Russia investigation himself if he wanted to. "I can go in, and I could do whatever -- I could run it if I want. But I decided to stay out."
August 20, 2018: Trump tweets that Ohr and his family "received big money for helping to create the phony, dirty and discredited [Steele] Dossier."
August 21, 2018: Manafort is convicted of five counts of tax fraud, two counts of bank fraud and one count of failing to disclose a foreign bank account. Judge Ellis declares a mistrial on 10 other counts after the jury is unable to reach a verdict.
August 21, 2018: Cohen pleads guilty to eight violations of banking, tax and campaign finance laws. He says Trump worked "in coordination" with him to arrange hush payments to Daniels and McDougal to cover up a sex scandal that might imperil his presidency.
August 21, 2018: Mueller seeks to postpone Flynn's sentencing hearing until September 17, apparently because Trump's former national security adviser has more information to share with the special counsel.
August 21, 2018: Nearly 250 former government officials have now spoken out against Trump in defense of Brennan.
August 22, 2018: Trump goes on a Twitter tirade, siding with Manafort ("'Justice' took a 12 year old tax case, among other things, applied tremendous pressure on him and, unlike Michael Cohen, he refused to 'break'") and trolling Cohen ("Michael Cohen plead guilty to two counts of campaign finance violations that are not a crime. President Obama had a big campaign finance violation and it was easily settled!").
August 23, 2018: Trump, in a Fox News interview, blames the Justice Department for the investigations surrounding him, criticizes the deal struck with Cohen and lashes out at Sessions, who counters with a rare public rebuke of the president, saying Justice "will not be improperly influenced by political considerations."
August 23, 2018: Democrats have drafted a wide-ranging contingency plan should Mueller be fired or Trump take other steps to quash the Russia investigation like firing Rosenstein or pardoning key witnesses, NBC News reports. The plan includes emergency congressional action and nationwide protests.
August 23, 2018: Amid a series of high-profile pardons and commutations by Trump in recent months, his personal lawyers are cautioning against even considering clemency for former aides under investigation by Mueller until his inquiry is over, Giuliani, says.
August 23, 2018: Winner is sentenced to five years in prison for releasing a classified NSA report on Russian hacking.
August 24, 2018: Vital Kremlin informants have largely gone silent, leaving the CIA and other spy agencies in the dark about what Putin's intentions are for the midterm elections, reports The New York Times. It is not believed the informants have been compromised or killed, but have gone to ground amid more aggressive counterintelligence by Russia, including efforts to kill spies, such as Skripal.
August 24, 2018: The Manhattan district attorney's office is considering pursuing criminal charges against the Trump Organization and two senior company officials in connection with Cohen's hush money payment to Daniels, reports The New York Times.
August 24, 2018: Allen Weisselberg, chief financial officer of the Trump Organization, has been granted immunity in return for his testimony about hush money payments to women with whom Trump allegedly had affairs, reports the Wall Street Journal.
August 24, 2018: Trump, undeterred by Sessions' pledge to keep politics out of the Justice Department, tweets that he should look into "corruption" on the "other side" and offers a list of people and political enemies, including the targets of conservative conspiracy theories that claim the Russia investigation was motivated by politics.
August 24, 2018: Federal prosecutors who say that Butina traded sex as part of a secret influence campaign have only weak evidence to support that claim, say Robert Driscoll and Alfred Carry, the woman's lawyers, who argue in court papers that the depiction is part of a "sexist smear" effort.
August 27, 2018: In a closed-door dinner with evangelical leaders at the White House, Trump warns that if Democrats retake control of Congress in November, they will enact change "quickly and violently -- and violently."
August 27, 2018: "Trump is nuts. This time really feels different," a former White House official tells Vanity Fair in describing the president as increasingly acting on self-indulgent impulses rather than consulting his advisers.
August 27, 2018: Significant trade sanctions in response to the Skripal poisoning under a 1991 law on biological and chemical weapons use take effect. The Russian foreign ministry responds by saying that the sanctions will not force Russia to change its course and that any attempt to blacklist Russia will only make future dialogue more difficult.
August 27, 2018: Navalny is sentenced to 30 days in jail in a Moscow court, a sign of Kremlin jitters as an unpopular plan to raise the retirement age energizes critics of the government ahead of September 9 regional elections during which he had called for demonstrations.
August 28, 2018: Senate Republicans, who have long cautioned Trump against firing Sessions, are now resigned to the prospect that he may do so after the midterm elections, reports The Washington Post. Meanwhile, Graham says that if Trump does so, his new nominee would have to promise the Senate that he would allow Mueller to complete his investigation and McConnell says Sessions "should stay right where he is."
August 28, 2018: Two Republican-led House committees grill Ohr for over seven hours on his relationship with Steele but not the larger FBI-Justice Department effort in which they were involved to flip Deripaska and other Russian oligarchs.
August 29, 2018: Trump tweets that McGahn will be leaving in the fall. The White House counsel is a key witness as to whether the president tried to obstruct the Russia investigation and has cooperated extensively with Mueller and reportedly had clashed with Kushner and Ivanka Trump.
August 30, 2018: Trump and Cohen devised a plan to buy up all the dirt on Trump that the National Enquirer and parent company AMI had collected on him, dating back to the 1980s, reports The New York Times. The plan never was finalized, although it was discussed with Weisselberg.
August 30, 2018: Trump tweets that "Ivanka Trump & Jared Kushner had NOTHING to do with the so called 'pushing out' of Don McGahn. The Fake News Media has it, purposely, so wrong! They love to portray chaos in the White House when they know that chaos doesn’t exist-just a 'smooth running machine' with changing parts!"
August 31, 2018: W. Samuel Patten, a Republican consultant who worked with Manafort co-defendant Kilimnik, pleads guilty to one count of violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act for failing to register with the Justice Department when he represented the Ukrainian Opposition Bloc political party from 2014 to 2018. He tells prosecutors he illegally steered $50,000 from a Ukrainian businessman, reportedly Serhiy Lovochkin, to Trump's inauguration. Patten, who worked for Cambridge Analytica during the 2014 election, has agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. The charges were filed by the U.S. attorney's office in Washington following a referral by Mueller.
August 31, 2018: Lawyers for Papadopoulos argue that he should be spared jail time for lying to the FBI about his Russia contacts during the campaign because his lies did not hinder Mueller's investigation.
August 31, 2018: Trump's disapproval rating hits a high point of 60 percent, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll that also finds that clear majorities of Americans support Mueller's Russia investigation and say the president should not fire Sessions.
September 1, 2018: The New York Times publishes a story detailing the FBI and Justice Department efforts from 2014 to 2016 to flip Deripaska and other Russian oligarchs. The fallout from the apparently unsuccessful efforts fuels Trump's campaign to discredit the Russia investigation and claims there is a "deep state" conspiracy to undermine and destroy the president.
September 2, 2018: Butina, apparently with the encouragement of Erickson, tried to broker a deal to sell huge quantities of Russian jet fuel to prospective American buyers using middlemen who included Keene and his wife, Donna, a Washington lobbyist, for a $1 million commission, reports The New York Times. The deal did not go forward because Butina was unable to secure the jet fuel, nearly double what Russian refineries produce in a month.
September 2, 2018: Patten sends a pair of angry Facebook messages to Georgia's former economy minister on Facebook messenger. "Call of [sic] your trolls now or I'll start releasing things about Misha he'd prefer I didn’t," Patten writes to George Arveladze, former Georgian minister and parliamentarian, who had served as chief of staff to then-Georgian President Mikheil "Misha" Saakashvili..
September 3, 2018: Trump attacks Sessions and the Justice Department in connection with the indictments of two GOP congressmen on corruption charges, saying in a tweet that they could hurt the Republican Party in the midterm elections and reinforcing the view he believes law enforcement agencies are political instruments.
September 4, 2018: Fear: Trump in the White House, a forthcoming book by Bob Woodward, paints a harrowing portrait of the Trump presidency based on in-depth interviews with administration officials and other principals who say he is obsessed by the Russia scandal, aides routinely steal documents off his desk, military leaders ignore his orders, and those in his inner sanctum try to control his impulses to prevent disasters, reports The Washington Post.
September 4, 2018: Mueller, in a concession to Trump's legal team, will allow it to submit some written answers about whether his campaign colluded with Russia, reports The New York Times.
September 5, 2018: British authorities issue domestic and European arrest warrants for GRU officers Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, whom they say were sent to southwest England to poison Skripal. They also release photographs of a delicate perfume bottle that they say was used to carry the nerve agent Novichok. Petrov and Boshirov are later found to be cover names and British investigative journalists identify the men as Dr. Alexander Yevgenyevich Mishkin and Anatoliy Chepiga.
September 5, 2018: Trump and the White House aggressively attack Fear: Trump in the White House. Sanders denounces the book in a statement as "nothing more than fabricated stories, many by former disgruntled employees" without disputing any of the specifics.
September 5, 2018: The New York Times publishes an anonymous op-ed opinion column titled "I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration" by a high-ranking official, provoking a furious reaction from the president, who calls it "gutless."
September 6, 2018: Giuliani says Trump not answer Mueller's questions, in writing or in person, about obstruction of justice, in effect invoking his Fifth Amendment right to avoid self incrimination.
September 6, 2018: Trump tweets that despite the betrayal of his aides, there is one person who has "unwavering faith" in him -- North Korean dictator Kim Jung-Un.
September 7, 2018: Papadopoulos is sentenced to 14 days in prison and a year of supervised release.
September 7, 2018: Mifsud is described as "missing and may be deceased" in a court filing n connection with a DNC lawsuit alleging that it was the victim of a conspiracy by Russian officials and others to damage Clinton's campaign.
September 7, 2018: Prosecutors admit in a court filing that they wrongly accused Butina of offering to trade sex for a job as part of a covert effort by Russian government officials to infiltrate Republican circles.
September 7, 2018: Trump, citing national security reasons, tells reporters aboard Air Force One that he is calling on Session to find the author of the anonymous New York Times column and says he is considering legal action against The Times.
September 7, 2018: Cohen's lawyers petition to void Essential Consultants' nondisclosure agreement with Daniels, possibly to avoid further litigation and spare Trump the embarrassment of having to give a deposition in a lawsuit related to the case.
September 8, 2018: Trump attorney Charles Harder says in a separate court filing that the president will not seek to enforce the Daniels agreement, in effect conceding it was not valid because he never signed it. He calls on Daniels to "immediately dismiss" Trump from a defamation lawsuit she has filed against he and Cohen.
September 9, 2018: Anti-Putin candidates do surprisingly well in rural Russian elections while there are large protests organized by Navalny, who remains imprisoned.
September 10, 2018: U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan rejects a request that Butina be freed, saying she remains a serious flight risk. She imposes a gag order after excoriating prosecutors for falsely claiming Butina sought to trade sex for a job.
September 10, 2018: Avenatti counters that Daniels' lawsuit must be allowed to proceed because Trump and Cohen have not faced "any true consequences" in the case.
September 11, 2018: Donald Jr. says there are people the president can still trust in an interview of ABC's "Good Morning," "I just think it's a much smaller group than I would like it to be."
September 11, 2018: Putin says the men accused of poisoning Skripal are just "ordinary citizens."
September 12, 2018: Mueller alleges in a new court filing that Manafort sought to influence a supposedly independent report by Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom for a on Tymoshenko that founds there was no political motivation for her trial.
September 12, 2018: Trump approves an executive order to allow sanctions of foreign citizens suspected of interference in American elections.
The new order is aimed broadly at any potential outside interference in elections, but is meant to give the government an additional tool to punish and deter Russian entities.
September 12, 2018: RT broadcasts an exclusive interview with the men British authorities say poisoned Skripal. They claim to be tourists who were only visiting the Salisbury cathedral.
September 12, 2018: Zuckerberg publishes a lengthy blog post cataloging steps Facebook has taken to fight election interference.
September 13, 2018: Trump's personal legal team has a joint defense agreement with Manafort's attorneys, allowing them to share confidential information, and are in regular contact, Giuliani tells Politico.
September 14, 2014: Manafort agrees to a plea deal under which he will cooperate with Mueller. He will plead guilty to two charges that were to be heard at his now short-circuited second trial and forfeit $26 million in assets.
September 15, 2018: Pyotr Verzilov, a member of the anti-Putin protest group Pussy Riot, is flown Berlin for treatment after falling severely ill from what fellow activists say was a poisoning.
September 17, 2018: Trump, repeating the false claim that the FBI spied on his campaign, orders the Justice Department to declassify Russia investigation documents, including portions of the FISA court order to surveil Page.
September 17, 2018: Trump, in an interview with Hill.TV, says of Sessions, "I don't have an attorney general. It's very sad."
September 18, 2018: A befuddled Trump tweets that "I should have fired Comey the day I won the primaries."
September 20, 2018: Cohen has spoken repeatedly to Mueller's prosecutors over the past month, The New York Times reports.
September 20, 2018: The U.S. imposes sanctions on a Chinese military firm for buying combat aircraft from a sanctioned Russian defense firm.
September 21, 2018: The New York Times reports on Rosenstein's suggestions to Justice Department and FBI officials following Comey's firing that he secretly record Trump and his discussions about recruiting Cabinet members to invoke the 25th Amendment. Rosenstein denies the account.
September 21, 2018: In a rare retreat, Trump reverses himself and says he is no longer demanding that Russia investigation-related documents be released.
September 21, 2018: Russian diplomats held secret talks in London last year with people close to Assange to assess whether they could help him flee the U.K., reports The Guardian. It says a tentative plan was devised to smuggle him out of the Ecuadorian Embassy in a diplomatic vehicle, transported him to another country and eventually to Russia. The plan was abandoned after it was deemed too risky.
September 21, 2018: Nikolaev, the billionaire oligarch who reportedly helped fund Butina, has been a discrete source of funding for Russian military and intelligence groups for technologies that sanctions have made it difficult for Russia to obtain, reports The New York Times.
September 21, 2018: Trump, speaking at a rally in Springfield, Missouri, casts the midterm elections as a referendum on him and his agenda, arguing that a vote for any Democrat would empower "dangerous" and "crazy" people while jeopardizing the Republican Party's slim congressional majorities. He also continues his attacks on federal law enforcement, promising to root out the "real bad ones" and eliminate the "lingering stench" at the Justice Department.
September 4, 2018: Rosenstein offers to resign but remains in his job.
September 24, 2018: Navalny is released from prison but is quickly returned to confinement, having already spent 110 days in jail on six arrests since last year.
September 27, 2018: Nearly two years after the 2016 elections and with the midterms approaching, the U.S. intelligence community is issuing increasingly dire warnings about potential interference from Russia and other countries, but the voting infrastructure remains largely unchanged, reports The New York Times.
September 27, 2018: The European security company ESET has discovered that the GRU has secretly developed and deployed new malware that is virtually impossible to eradicate and allows the Kremlin’s hackers to return again and again, reports Daily Beast.
October 3, 2018: Russian Deputy Attorney General Saak Albertovich Karapetyan, who reportedly directed Veselnitskaya's foreign operations and was intimately familiar with Putin's most notorious operations, dies in a helicopter crash during an "unauthorized flight" in the Kostroma region, northeast of Moscow.
October 4, 2018: The Justice Department announces the indictment of seven GRU officers on cyber hacking charges linked to the leaking of Olympic athletes' drug-test data in an alleged attempt to undermine international efforts to expose Russian doping. Four of the officers also are charged with targeting organizations probing Russia's use of chemical weapons, including the poisoning of Skripal. Three of the officers had been indicted by Mueller in July.
October 4, 2018: Officials from the U.S., Britain and the Netherlands say Russian intelligence officers brazenly launched cyberattacks on investigators pursuing cases of Russian malfeasance around the globe. They offer a litany of victims including antidoping agencies, inspectors scrutinizing the Skripal poisoning and others examining the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 in July 2014.
October 8, 2018: Trump says he has no plans to fire Rosenstein.
October 10, 2018: Lawyers defending the Trump campaign against the DNC lawsuit assert in a motion that the First Amendment protects the campaign's right to disclose stolen information, in this case stolen e-mails, because the campaign did not participate in the theft.
October 10, 2018: Pinedo is sentenced to six months in prison and six months of home detention.
October 11, 2018: Trump's attorneys have begun drafting answers to written questions provided by Mueller, CNN reports. The questions are said to focus on collusion.
October 13, 2018: Although Kushner's net worth has quintupled in recent years to almost $324 million, he appears to have paid almost no federal income taxes as the result of a common tax-minimizing maneuver that generated millions of dollars in losses, The New York Times reports.
October 14, 2018: Trump says on CBS's "60 Minutes" that he believes Putin "probably" has been involved in assassinations and poisonings, but dismisses their gravity, noting that they have not taken place in the U.S.
October 15, 2018: Trump already has raised $100 million for the 2020 presidential election, an FEC filing shows.
October 15, 2018: U.S. District Judge S. James Otero throws out Daniels' defamation lawsuit against Trump and orders her to pay the president's legal expenses. Otero rules that Trump did not defame Daniels because his speech was protected by the First Amendment as the kind of "rhetorical hyperbole" normally associated with politics and public discourse.
October 15, 2018: James Wolfe, former longtime director of security for the Senate Intelligence Committee, pleads guilty to lying to the FBI. Prosecutors said Wolfe told a reporter in October 2017 that he had served someone with a subpoena involving the potential ties between Russia and the Trump campaign and later lied to FBI agents about the exchange.
October 16, 2018: Natalie Mayflower Sours Edwards, a senior adviser at the Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network is arrested for allegedly leaking details about the agency's suspicious activity reports, including those pertaining to Manafort and Butina.
October 17, 2018: Rosenstein says Mueller's investigation has already revealed a multi-faceted Russian effort to meddle in the election, reports the Wall Street Journal. He says that he has a "solemn" responsibility to oversee and prosecute such cases, and that he is "pleased the president has been supportive of that."
October 17, 2018: Trump and the Trump Organization repeatedly defrauded investors while trying to artificially limit liability by, among other methods, Trump negligently presenting himself as a developer of real-estate projects in order to generate interest and financing, but when the projects failed, claiming they were simply licensing deals, report ProPublica and WNYC New York.
October 17, 2018: McGahn resigns as expected. He is replaced by Pat Cipollone.
October 19, 2018: The Office of the Director of National Intelligence says that it is concerned about "ongoing campaigns" by Russia, China and Iran to interfere with the upcoming midterm election.
October 19, 2018: Later in the day, the Justice Department announces it has charged a Russian woman, Elena Khusyaynova, with conspiring to defraud the U.S. by interfering with the upcoming election and for having interfered in the 2016 election. Court papers say Khusyaynova is the chief accountant for Project Lakhta, a propaganda operation funded by Prigozhin that is associated with the IRA.
October 19, 2018: Ellis sets a February 8, 2019 sentencing date for Manafort, who appears in court in a wheelchair. Manafort apparently is suffering "significant issues" with his health relating to his diet in the Alexandria jail where he is being being detained. Ellis will dismiss 10 charges on which the jury could not reach a verdict during Manafort's August trial.
October 20, 2018: Trump tells reporters that his administration will "pull out" of the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty, a strategic arms reduction pact that Reagan and Gorbachev struck in 1987. Russia has long been accused of violating the treaty, but some Republicans are alarmed that other international pacts to control nuclear proliferation may also be upended. Gorbachev calls the decision reckless and not the work of "a great mind."
October 22, 2018: Stephan Roh, Mifsud's lawyer, tells The AP that Mifsud is alive and in hiding and disputes the allegations against him.
October 23, 2018: The U.S. Cyber Command is targeting individual Russian operatives to try to deter them from spreading disinformation to interfere in elections, telling them that American operatives have identified them and are tracking their work, reports The New York Times.
October 24, 2018: Ignoring the warnings of aides, Trump continues to use iPhones for calls that Russian and Chinese intelligence eavesdrop on because they are not secure, The New York Times reports.
October 25, 2018: Meadows states that members of the FBI and Justice Department should be referred for potential disciplinary action over their scrutiny of Papadopoulos, alleging without evidence that his constitutional rights may have been violated in recounting what Papadopoulos told lawmakers during a seven-hour, closed-door interview with members of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees.
October 26, 2018: Papadopoulos is seeking immunity before he agrees to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee despite having spoken with House lawmakers on October 25.
October 29, 2018: Giuliani says Trump's legal team has prepared written responses to several dozen questions from Mueller but says they won't submit them until after the midterm election and only if they reach a broader agreement with Mueller on terms for the questioning.
October 29, 2018: Four anonymous plaintiffs file a lawsuit against Trump, his business and three eldest children in federal court, alleging that the they helped promote fraudulent investments that duped investors through promotional spots and speeches that Trump made on behalf of marketing company ACN. The plaintiffs allege that the investments were a sham and that Trump and his family promoted them despite knowing they were fraudulent.
October 30, 2018: A plot to smear Mueller based on suspicious emails offering women money in exchange for fabricating sexual misconduct claims against him quickly unravels under news media scrutiny. Mueller's office says it has referred the matter, the latest in a string of attempts by Trump supporters to discredit his investigation, to the FBI.
November 6, 2018: Democrats take back the House in midterm voting, portending investigations against Trump. Rohrabacher is defeated after 15 terms, in part because of his pro-Russia views.ON THE RUN
November 7, 2018: Trump asks Sessions to resign, effectively firing him. He names as acting AG Matthew Whitaker, who has spoken out against the Mueller investigation, raising fears that Trump will now try to shut down the special prosecutor.
November 8, 2018: Trump claims he doesn't know Whitaker as Whitaker refuses to recuse himself.
November 9, 2018: Whitaker privately provided advice to Trump last year on how the White House might be able to pressure the Justice Department to investigate Clinton and other political adversaries, reports Vox.
November 13, 2018: The state of Maryland asks U.S. District Judge Ellen L. Hollander for an injunction declaring that Whitaker is not the legitimate acting attorney general as a matter of law and that the position and its powers instead rightfully belong to Rosenstein.
November 14, 2018: McConnell again refuses to allow a bill to protect Mueller to come to a vote.
November 15, 2018: Federal prosecutors have obtained an indictment against Assange, according to an inadvertently revealed court filing, according to multiple news media reports. The nature of the charges are not known and the indictment remains under seal.
November 18, 2018: After a year of claiming that he was willing and eager to be interviewed by Mueller, Trump says in an interview with Chris Wallace of "Fox News Sunday" that he most likely would not sit for an interview, asserting that "we've wasted enough time on this witch hunt and the answer is, probably, we're finished."
November 19, 2018: Mueller, in court filings, says Whitaker's appointment "neither alters the Special Counsel's authority to represent the United States nor raises any jurisdictional issue."
November 19, 2018: A group of Senate Democrats is suing to block Whitaker on grounds that his appointment was unconstitutional.
November 19, 2018: Ivanka Trump, not unlike Clinton, used a personal email address to send hundreds of emails last year relating to government business, The Washington Post reports in amplifying on previous disclosures.
November 20, 2018: Mueller receives Trump's written answers to the special prosecutor's questions.
November 21, 2018: House Judicial Oversight and Government committee Republicans subpoena Comey and Lynch in their ongoing investigations of FBI and Justice Department officials' conduct during probes of Trump's campaign and Hillary Clinton's emails.
November 22, 2018: GRU chief Igor Korobov, 62, dies, reportedly after a long illness. His predecessor, Igor Sergun, 58, had died in October after heading the spy agency since 2011.
November 26, 2018: Manafort's plea agreement is revoked after prosecutors say he repeatedly lied.
November 26, 2018: Papadopoulos reports to federal prison to begin serving a 14-day sentence.
November 27, 2018: Trump tweets that "The Fake News Media builds Bob Mueller up as a Saint, when in actuality he is the exact opposite. He is doing TREMENDOUS damage to our Criminal Justice System, where he is only looking at one side and not the other."
November 27, 2018: The Guardian reveals that Manafort reportedly met with Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy in 2013, 2015 and March 2016. Assange calls the story a "hoax" and Manafort denies ever meeting Assange.
November 27, 2018: Giuliani, among others, confirms a report that Downing repeatedly briefed Trump's lawyers on Manafort's discussions with Mueller's prosecutors after Manafort agreed to cooperate.
November 27, 2018: Corsi releases documents showing that as the presidential campaign heated up in the summer of 2016, Stone tried to dispatch him to find out what information WikiLeaks had that could prove damaging to Clinton's campaign.
November 29, 2018: As part of a new plea deal with Mueller, Cohen pleads guilty to making a false statement to Congress about his contacts with Russia during the campaign regarding a Trump hotel-spa project in Moscow.
November 29, 2018: Trump is identified as"Individual No. 1" by Mueller's prosecutors in a document related to Cohen's plea and a draft document pertaining to Stone and Assange.
November 29, 2018: Trump, traveling to Buenos Aires for a G20 meeting, cancels a planned meeting with Putin, citing an unresolved naval standoff in which Russian forces seized three Ukrainian ships.
November 30, 2018: Trump and Putin meet.
December 3, 2018: Trump attacks Mueller and Cohen and praises Stone in a series of tweets legal experts say amounts to evidence of obstruction of justice and witness tampering.
December 4, 2018: Flynn has provided such "substantial assistance" in pursuing various Russia scandal investigation threads, as well as other investigations, that he should be given no prison time, according to a heavily redacted document filed by Mueller.
December 7, 2018: In a day of major developments, Mueller and Southern District of New York (SDNY) prosecutors said in legal memorandums pertaining to Cohen and Manafort that the president committed felonies in making the Daniels and McDougal hush money payments, had hitherto unknown contacts with Russia through Cohen as recently as this year, and that Manafort lied about being in touch with administration officials and Kilimnik.
December 7, 2018: Trump says he will nominate William Barr, who served as attorney general from 1991-93, to that post.
December 7, 2018: Comey testifies behind closed doors to two congressional committees about the early stages of the Russia investigation. He later describes the hearing as a "desperate attempt to find anything that can be used to attack the institutions of justice investigating this president."
December 7, 2018: Papadopoulos is released from prison after serving 12 days.
December 8, 2018: Trump, in tweets after the Cohen and Manafort filings declares "Totally clears the president. Thank you," and "AFTER TWO YEARS AND MILLIONS OF PAGES OF DOCUMENTS (and a cost of over $30,000,000), NO COLLUSION!"
December 8, 2018: Trump announces that Kelly will leave by the end of the year. His top pick for the job refuses it.
December 9, 2018: Russians made contact with at least 14 Trump associates during the campaign and transition, reports The Washington Post.
December 10, 2018: The advocacy group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington sues the Justice Department in a bid to gain quick access to records that may reflect a leak of information about the Clinton email investigation to Giuliani during the 2016 campaign. The suit alleges that Giuliani had advance knowledge that the FBI intended to reopen its investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server for government work.
December 10, 2018: Trump tweets that the Daniels and McDougal hush money payments were not campaign related.
December 11, 2018: Judge Otero orders Daniels to pay Trump about $293,000 in legal fees and sanctions after her defamation suit against him was dismissed.
December 12, 2018: Judge William H. Pauley III sentences Cohen to three years and fines him $2 million for the SDNY charges, including hush money payments, and two months for the Mueller charge of lying to Congress, to be served concurrently.
December 12, 2018: SDNY prosecutors announce that they have struck a non-prosecution agreement with AMI for its role in catching and killing stories of women who said they had relationships with Trump. As part of the agreement, AMI admitted it made payments to the women "in concert" with Trump's campaign to "suppress the women's story so as to prevent it from influencing the election."
December 13, 2018: Butina becomes the first Russian national convicted of seeking to influence U.S. policy in the run-up and through the 2016 election as she pleads guilty to conspiring to violate laws prohibiting covert foreign agents. As part of her agreement, she promises to cooperate with American law enforcement and states that Erickson was involved in setting up a line of communication between Russia and the Trump campaign using the NRA as a conduit. Meanwhile, Torshin has retired from his position at the Russian central bank.
December 13, 2018: Federal prosecutors are examining whether foreigners illegally funneled donations to Trump's inaugural committee and a pro-Trump super PAC in hopes of buying influence over American policy, reports the Wall Street Journal.
December 14, 2018: Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget, is named acting chief of staff.
ABC News, Agentura.ru, Alliance for Securing Democracy, "The Apprentice: Trump, Russia and the Subversion of American Democracy" (Greg Miller, 2018), The Atlantic, The Associated Press, Bellingcat, Bloomberg News, Business Insider, BuzzFeed News, CBS News, Channel 4 (Britain), CNBC, CNN, Capital Alpha Security, "Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money, and How Russia Helped Donald Trump Win" (Luke Harding, 2017), "Cyberwar: How Russian Hackers and Trolls Helped Elect a President -- What We Don't, Can't and Do Know" (Judith Hall Jamieson, 2018), Daily Beast, Daily Caller, El Pais (Spain), emptywheel, Engadget, "Fear: Trump in the White House" (Bob Woodward, 2018), The Financial Times, Foreign Policy, Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel, Fox News, "From Cold War To Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin's Russia" (Michael McFaul, 2018), The Guardian, "A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership" (James Comey, 2018), The Hill, Hill.TV, HuffPost, The Independent UK, The Intercept, The Japan Times, Just Security, Krebson Security, "Let Trump Be Trump: The Inside Story of His Rise to the Presidency" (Corey Lewandowski and David Bossie, 2017) Los Angeles Times, McClatchy News Service, Mashable, The Moscow Project, Mother Jones, Moyers & Company, Narativ, NBC News, National Public Radio, Newsweek, New York magazine, The New Yorker, New York Review of Books, NewsMax Media, The New Republic, New York Review of Books, The New York Times, The Observer (London), "Orders to Kill: The Putin Regime and Political Murder" (Amy Knight, 2017), The Palmer Report, Paste magazine, "The Perfect Weapon: War, Sabotage and Fear in the Cyber Age" (David Sanger, 2018), Philadelphia Inquirer, Politico, PolitiFact, PostimusMaximus, ProPublica, RagePath, Real Estate Weekly, "The Red Web" (Andrei Soldatov and Irina Borogan, 2015, 2017), Reuters, Roll Call, Russia Today Network, "Russian Roulette: The Inside Story of Putin's War on America and the Election of Donald Trump" (Michael Isikoff and David Korn, 2018), Salon, Scribd, Slate, Small Wars Journal, Spy magazine, StatNews, Christopher Steele-Orbis Business Intelligence, Tages-Anzeiger (Switzerland), Talking Points Memo, ThinkProgress, Time, The Toronto Star, "TrumpNation" (Tim O'Brien, 2005), "Trump/Russia: A Definitive History" (Seth Hettena, 2018), "A Very Expensive Poison: The Assassination of Alexander Litvinenko and Putin's War with the West" (Luke Harding, 2016), The Village Voice, Vox, WNYC New York, Wall Street Journal, War on the Rocks, The Washington Post, Washington Times, The Watchdog Report, Wikipedia, Wired magazine, Yahoo! Finance, Yahoo! News, YouTube.
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