Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Bill Moyers and company: A Timeline: Russia and President Trump

Steven Harper, adjunct professor at Northwestern University:

"So in February 2016, Paul Manafort pitched himself to the Trump campaign — and offered to work without compensation! Journalist Josh Marshall thinks there’s a story there, and he’s probably correct.

"Manafort’s overture is one of several items that I just added to my Timeline for Moyers & Company. To see how the latest Manafort piece fits, take a few minutes to review the entire Timeline. The symbolic bombing of a Syrian airfield sure looks like a distraction."

As a teaser, here are a few entries from Harper's timeline:

  • Trump’s efforts to develop business in Russia date to 1987. In 1996, he applied for his trademark in that country. Discussing ambitions for a Trump hotel in 2007, he declared, “We will be in Moscow at some point.”
  • August 1998: Russia defaulted on its debt and its stock market collapsed. As the value of the ruble plummeted, Russian millionaires scrambled to get money out of their country and into New York City, where real estate provided a safe haven for overseas investors. [Added March 20, 2017]
  • October 1998: Demolition of a vacant office building near the United Nations headquarters was making way for Trump World Tower. Donald Trump began selling units in the skyscraper, which was scheduled to open in 2001 and became a prominent depository of Russian money. By 2004, one-third of the units sold on the 76th through 83rd floors of Trump World Tower involved people or limited liability companies connected to Russia or neighboring states. Assisting Trump’s sales effort was Ukrainian immigrant Semyon “Sam” Kislin, who issued mortgages to buyers of multimillion-dollar Trump World Tower apartments. In the late 1970s, Kislin had co-owned an appliance store with Georgian immigrant Tamir Sapir and they had sold 200 television sets to Donald Trump on credit. By the early 1990s, Kislin had become a wealthy commodities trader and campaign fundraiser for Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who in 1996 appointed him to the New York City Economic Development Corporation. Meanwhile, Sapir had made a fortune as a New York City real estate developer. [Added March 20, 2017]

 A Timeline: Russia and President Trump