The now-infamous meeting that took place between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer connected to the Kremlin in June 2016 apparently isn’t the only meeting he held at Trump Tower prior to his father’s election as president. It seems that he also met with an emissary for two wealthy Arab princes and an Israeli specialist in social media manipulation, The New York Times reports.
The meeting was arranged by Erik Prince, brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, founder of Blackwater (now known as Academi) and was centered around finding a way to help Donald Trump’s campaign, Mediaite notes.
Trump Jr.’s meeting with the emissary, George Nader, took place in August 2016, according to The Hill. This is a clear indication that Russia may not be the only country that offered to help Trump’s 2016 campaign.
Israeli social media strategist Joel Zamel was also at the meeting. His company reportedly hatched a plan to manipulate social media in an attempt to help Trump get elected, but it’s not clear as to whether the plan actually happened, and a lawyer for Zamel denied that his client conducted a campaign to help Trump.
One of Trump Jr.’s lawyers, Alan Futerfas, provided the Times with a statement, saying that “prior to the 2016 election, Donald Trump Jr. recalls a meeting with Erik Prince, George Nader and another individual who may be Joel Zamel. They pitched Mr. Trump on a social media platform or marketing strategy. He was not interested and that was the end of it.”
However, that’s not how it went according to the Times and to Mediaite, which reported:
“The emissary, George Nader, told Donald Trump Jr. that the crown princes who led Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates were eager to help his father win election as president. The social media specialist, Joel Zamel, extolled his company’s ability to give an edge to a political campaign; by that time, the firm had already drawn up a multi-million dollar proposal for a social media manipulation effort to help elect Mr. Trump.
“The company, which employed several Israeli former intelligence officers, specialized in collecting and shaping opinion through social media.”
And this has possibly piqued the curiosity of Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who has been investigating Russia’s attempts to interfere with the 2016 election. Allegedly, he’s investigating the potential discussions between Nader and Zamel.
An attorney for Nader said his client “has fully cooperated with the special counsel’s investigation and will continue to do so.” And a senior official in Saudi Arabia informed the Times that Nader was never employed or authorized to speak for its crown prince.
As to what will transpire regarding this meeting that occurred with just three months left before the election, that remains to be seen.
On Wednesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee released the entire transcript of its interview with Trump Jr. which centered around the June 2016 meeting between Trump Jr. and the attorney who promised to bring up information that would harm Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
With the news that Saudi Arabia may have also interfered with the 2016 election, will Trump Jr. be hauled in front of the committee again?
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