Roger Stone, the Richard Nixon dirty trickster and a longtime confidant of Donald Trump, revealed in an interview Thursday with the conservative Washington Times that he had contact with Guccifer 2.0, the alleged persona involved with the campaign hacks targeting Democrats. The Smoking Gun first revealed on March 8 about the communications between Stone and the purported Democratic National Committee hacker.
It has also been widely reported that Guccifer 2.0 is a front for Russian intelligence, and top U.S. intelligence agencies expressed "high confidence that Russian military intelligence (General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate or GRU) used the Guccifer 2.0 persona" in their "cyber operations."
Stone described his exchange with the Guccifer 2.0 persona as "completely innocuous and perfunctory" and insisted that he "had no contacts or communications with the Russian State, Russian Intelligence or anyone fronting for them or acting as intermediaries for them."
He had already admitted to being in contact with Julian Assange of WikiLeaks, the group which published the hacked emails from Democratic officials fed by Russian intelligence, and predicted the leak of Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta's emails two months before they were released:
Trust me, it will soon the Podesta's time in the barrel. #CrookedHillary
— Roger Stone (@RogerJStoneJr) August 21, 2016
WikiLeaks published emails from Podesta's Gmail account immediately after the Washington Post and other outlets posted video of Trump boasting about sexually assaulting women with Access Hollywood host Billy Bush. Just days before Podesta's emails were released, Stone tweeted that Assange is set to release more hacked material:
Wednesday@HillaryClinton is done. #Wikileaks.
— Roger Stone (@RogerJStoneJr) October 2, 2016
Libs thinking Assange will stand down are wishful thinking. Payload coming #Lockthemup
— Roger Stone (@RogerJStoneJr) October 5, 2016
Stone's admission is just one more piece of evidence that figures in Trump's network had ties with Russian operatives during the campaign.
Naturally, Stone just three weeks ago said he had "absolutely" no ties with anyone connected to Russia.