Let’s go back to the beginning, when the very first revelations came out about Mike Flynn and the Russians – February, 2017, only two weeks into Donald Trump’s presidency.
Flynn had been fired for misreporting his meeting(s) with the Russian ambassador to Vice President Pence, bringing the simmering charge of latent Russian involvement in the Dem’s election loss front and center.
We didn’t know then many things we know now, but while the media were running wild trying to connect (imaginary, it now turns out) dots between Mike Flynn’s contacts with Russians in the ordinary course of meet-and-greets, the White House was already in DEFCON mode seeking to know how the New York Times even knew Flynn had ever talked with any Russians.
Who leaked these contacts? After all, in the classified meaning of the term, they were “classified.” A criminal violation. And by April there were several more and they had gone beyond Mike Flynn.
So who was doing the leaking? This was a critical question for the barely-in-place White House. Trump’s own staff? White House holdovers? The Intel community?…of which there were several, some of their departed leaders, James Clapper and John Brennan, none too friendly to the new administration.
Then there were career bureaucrats in all those agencies who’d spent decades putting their own imprimaturs on policies that covered all the Obama years. Many of the left, some even of the hard left, almost all were card-carrying members of the Bureaucrats’ Turf Protection Society, with deep personal and professional reasons having less to do with any political cause and more to do with a nice gated retirement villa in south Florida.
They felt, and still feel, threatened by not only the possibility of a complete change in direction (and management) in their agencies, but that disgusting feeling life-long front office employees get when the boss’s daughter runs off and marries a guy who used to run the bowling alley.
This fleet of bureaucrats all watch the same news shows, (six to choose from, all the same) read the same newspapers and opinion journals, and for a full year before the election their media had uniformly served up a daily diet about the things not to like about this “clown” (per Charles Krauthammer) long before it appeared he might actually win the nomination, much less the presidency.
This was the deep state Donald Trump faced from the day he was elected, three months before he was even inaugurated. Its sheer size was the perfect cover for dark ops, for much like Agatha Christie’s “Murder on the Orient Express” – how do you trap a killer when everyone on the train has a motive?
Under these circumstances I’m sure rooting out the individual leakers inside the deep state was recognized as something Trump’s sleuths probably couldn’t accomplish. Especially in a hurry. It takes months to lay traps. And the voting public already wanted to see, from several agencies and from the bowels of the White House, a frog march to the courthouse. A march in front of a judge by a Post or Times reporter, naming his heretofore “unnamed source” inside the agency would have been nice too.