Recently released information under a decision in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit has shed new light into the interviews of dozens of figures questioned in the Mueller Special Counsel investigation. The FOIA requests, brought forth by CNN and Jason Leopold of Buzzfeed, were litigated, with the judge ultimately deciding in favor of the plaintiffs, and ordering the government to release 500 pages of documents a month until the request is satisfied.
The releases are comprised of 302 forms, or the written summary of the interviews that FBI agents conducted with various figures in the Special Counsel investigation, figures both extremely tangential, and crucial to the story.
A close review of the Carter Page 302 forms reveals more context in regards to his possible work within the CIA, as well as the role the CIA may have had in the spying operation against President Trump. The 302’s that have been released detail interviews conducted during March of 2017. It is unknown at this time whether more interviews were conducted after the official appointment of the Special Counsel.
In one 302, recording an interview with Page on March 30, 2017, Page is asked about “working with” Bulatov and Podobnyy, two of the Russian Intelligence Assets indicted in the FBI case where Carter Page is identified as “MALE-1″. This case was misrepresented by legacy media for several months after Carter Page first emerged as a figure in the now debunked Steele Dossier. For months, legacy press insinuated that Page was a potential Russian asset under investigation by the FBI, when in actuality he was assisting the FBI. The 302 indicates that Carter Page is aware that Bulatov is a member of the Russian Intelligence Services (RIS). Page states that he only provided “immaterial, non-public” information to Bulatov. At that point, the interviewing agent introduces the idea that the SVR could consider Page a witting or unwitting “on the record” source for the Russian Intelligence Services (RIS), and Page questions the statement, saying “he wanted to set a positive example for relations with the United States and Russia, and set an opposition angle to the way the relationship has been interpreted for years.” As per the 302, he then offered that the relationship wasn’t a back channel and “I’m sure I’m on the books. They know who I am”.
After some more conversation about the FBI case Page had assisted in, Page stated he wanted nothing to do with espionage, and he was only trying to help in interviews with an entity that has been redacted within the 302’s.
But it doesn’t stop there. The SSA conducting the interview explains to Page that the RIS have been tracking him likely since he lived in Russia, and that they continued to do so between 2008-2013. Page pushes back stating he only had periodic meetings, and they were always in public. The SSA explains to Page that those types of interactions are a method that the RIS use to develop sources, and that based on information they had, Page was likely on their “books”. Page replies “understood”. The agent then went on to explain how Page would be an attractive target for them given his work on the Trump campaign, and Page pushes back forcefully that he had no contact with either of the two during any of his trips to Russia.
It appears Page tries to hint to the FBI agents that he was working on behalf of the CIA as a source for the RIS, and give them some idea of where the Russian collusion narrative began. Page at one point references the 9/11 commission report conclusion, which identifies a major cause of the intelligence failure as the lack of communication between the FBI and the CIA. As per the 302, “Page intimated that the allegations of Russian interference into the election are a repeat of the USIC failures leading to the 9/11 attacks”.
In another 302 from the day after, on March 31, 2017, the interview again shifted to Page’s prior contacts with the two Russians. In a section titled “Relationship to the Russian Intelligence Services” an interesting exchange takes place. The SSA (Supervisory Special Agent) conducting the interview begins to describe the varying levels of intelligence contacts that Russian Intelligence Officers maintain. The 302 notes that Page interrupts the agents, stating that he is probably the “highest level contact”. Page then references Bulatov and Podobnyy, and states “the more immaterial non-public information I give them, the better for this country”.
Page then goes on to reference himself as being “on the books”. The Special Agent conducting the interview asks if Page understands what that really means; that the FBI defines “on the books” as being in some sort of source-handler relationship, either witting or unwitting, with the RIS. They go on to ask Page again, if including the circumstances of his relationship with Bulatov and Podobnyy, Page was “on the books” of the RIS, and Page agreed that he was “on the books”. However, he tells the agents that he “didn’t like when they characterized him as “working with” the two Russians.”
UncoverDC reached out to Carter Page to ask him about the above revelations. In a rushed phone call, he was emphatic stating “It’s false. It’s false. It’s all misrepresented. All of this is going to come out in my book. It’s totally false”
Also throughout the 302’s, Page is clear when he states his dislike for Hillary Clinton, how the campaign had committed absolutely no “collusion” with Russia, and that he has never lied or committed any crimes. For the most part, his comments in the 302 line up with his testimony in front of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in 2017.
Page has a major role in the ongoing investigation into the misuse of the FISA process during the 2016 election. Carter Page had worked with both the CIA and the FBI, however his role with the CIA has remained somewhat confidential thus far. One of the most egregious acts identified by the Office of Inspector General in the FISA investigation, was that of FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith. Clinesmith is under criminal investigation for altering an email from the CIA identifying Carter Page as having a relationship with the agency, to read as though he did not. It is clear from the release of these documents, that Carter Page may have had a much more longstanding and broader role in the CIA than previously thought.
Uncover DC will continue to follow this developing story.
Tracy Beanz is the Founder and Editor in Chief at UncoverDC. You can follow her on Twitter @TracyBeanz