The FBI’s Original Code Name for the Trump Investigation Was a Nod to a Rolling Stones Classic

The FBI’s Original Code Name for the Trump Investigation Was a Nod to a Rolling Stones Classic

It’s impossible to avoid hearing about the current investigation into possible Russian meddling in the 2016 United States Presidential Election — and, as the New York Times reported in a lengthy piece about the ongoing investigation, its code name finds its origins in a classic song from Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and the Rolling Stones.

“I was born in a crossfire hurricane,” sings Mick in the opening bars of the song “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” and that same phrase — Crossfire Hurricane — was the name by which the investigation was known in its early days back in 2016.

Crossfire Hurricane, you may also recall, was the title of director Brett Morgen’s documentary on the Rolling Stones back in 2014, one Morgen spoke with Rock Cellar about in detail.

As the NYT details:

Within hours of opening an investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia in the summer of 2016, the F.B.I. dispatched a pair of agents to London on a mission so secretive that all but a handful of officials were kept in the dark.

Their assignment, which has not been previously reported, was to meet the Australian ambassador, who had evidence that one of Donald J. Trump’s advisers knew in advance about Russian election meddling. After tense deliberations between Washington and Canberra, top Australian officials broke with diplomatic protocol and allowed the ambassador, Alexander Downer, to sit for an F.B.I. interview to describe his meeting with the campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos.

The agents summarized their highly unusual interview and sent word to Washington on Aug. 2, 2016, two days after the investigation was opened. Their report helped provide the foundation for a case that, a year ago Thursday, became the special counsel investigation. But at the time, a small group of F.B.I. officials knew it by its code name: Crossfire Hurricane.

The Rolling Stones sure find ways to pop up in the news every now and then …

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