The Trump-Russia Scandal’s Many Swirling Unknowns

What we know so far about the Trump-Russia scandal only suggests more questions—questions Special Counsel Robert Mueller is digging into.

THE NEAR-DAILY BARRAGE of news and revelations, big and small, about the Trump campaign and its metastasizing ties to Russia can be hard to keep track of, even for people following the scandal closely. Story lines and players appear and disappear, sometimes for weeks or even months at a time.

While there remain big, overarching questions about whether there was active conspiracy between Trump, his associates, and Russia—or merely opportunistic collusion—the answers to those questions could be amorphous and long in coming.

More simply and immediately, there’s plenty of information that we know we don’t yet know about what went on in the campaign, from cyber meddling to clandestine meetings surveilled by US and other intelligence agencies—missing puzzle pieces that we can discern from the revelations that have come out so far. As Donald Rumsfeld famously said in the early days of the Iraq War, “As we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say, we know there are some things we do not know.”

As the Trump campaign’s onetime chairman Paul Manafort—a key figure in the scandal—makes his way toward the Senate Judiciary Committee, we thought the time was right to, in Rumsfeldian terms, present a nonexhaustive list of 15 of the most pressing known unknowns in the Trump/Russia investigation: holes and unanswered questions that you can bet Special Counsel Robert Mueller is digging into.

Continue reading…