William Barr Should Almost Certainly NOT Release The Entire Mueller Report

William Barr Should Almost Certainly NOT Release The Entire Mueller Report

William Barr Should Almost Certainly NOT Release The Entire Mueller Report

Yesterday, Special Counsel Robert Mueller submitted his long-awaited report to U.S. Attorney General William Barr. Barr and former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will now review the report, submit an initial summary to Congress, and then further determine how much, if any, of the report should be seen by the public. Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives voted unanimously to make the report public, and there are similar calls from many in the press, the public and other areas to release the report in its entirety in the name of government transparency. Yet there are legitimate reasons not to do so, and those reasons should be supported by sensible and justice-seeking Democrats and Republicans.

The key conclusions of the Mueller report should absolutely be made public. The American people deserve to know as much as possible about, as Richard Nixon put it, “whether or not their President is a crook.” Americans have waited patiently for those conclusions for two years, paid millions of dollars for the investigation, and the key findings can help somewhat reunite the public around a shared reality.

But Robert Mueller’s investigation was limited to three main topics:

  • Any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump;
  • Any federal crimes that arise directly from the investigation into that; and
  • Any federal crimes committed in the course of – with intent to interfere with – the Special Counsel’s investigation, such as perjury, obstruction of justice, destruction of evidence, and intimidation of witnesses

While this may appear to be a rather broad scope, it should be noted that Robert Mueller appears to have employed two practices during the course of his investigation.

First, he has farmed out a number of issues and pieces of evidence to other parts of the justice system such as the Southern District of New York. He may have done this for a combination of reasons:

  • Desire not to burn through more resources than absolutely necessary during his own investigation
  • Too small a staff to investigate all criminal activity that was uncovered during his investigation
  • Desire to ensure that information about possible criminal activity by the President (not directly related to Russia) be disseminated as far and wide throughout the justice system as possible to make it difficult for the President to extract it and stop investigation into the crimes prematurely
  • Desire to ensure that Mueller is not seen as overstepping his bounds by investigating matters outside of his jurisdiction

It also appears that Mueller’s team may have already filed a number of sealed indictments. These are indictments that cannot be acted on until after the person is arrested. Since they are still sealed, we can assume that those individuals have not yet been arrested. Mueller may have done this for a combination of reasons:

  • Consistent with stated Justice Department policy, a sitting President cannot be indicted. It is possible therefore that some of those indictments relate to the President and/or members of his family, and will not be opened until after the President leaves (or is removed from) office
  • Mueller anticipates that further evidence of the crimes in the sealed indictments will be produced in the course of the investigations that he has farmed out to organizations like the Southern District of New York

All of these likely actions by Mueller indicate that, while his own investigation may be largely over, there are investigations related to the President that are still active. If that is the case, publicly releasing all of the information in his report could jeopardize the integrity of those investigations. Such information could tip off criminals to currently undisclosed lines of investigation, enabling them to cover their tracks, destroy evidence, or learn of sources and methods currently being used to investigate them.

Additionally, given the nature of what Mueller was investigating, it is quite likely that some information in his report is classified for national security reasons. The public should not take that lightly. More than two years of intensive open discussion in our nation’s press has no doubt already provided Russia with valuable marketing information on what parts of their activities worked well, which ones didn’t, and how to better avoid detection in the future. We don’t need to give Russia and other hostile foreign powers – via public disclosure – what little information is still being held close to the vest by our national security community.

For these reasons, we should expect – and embrace – William Barr’s release of a redacted (lines blacked out) version of the Mueller report. While many people on the left argue for full transparency, and may have deep suspicions of anything less, a redacted report likely indicates that the U.S. criminal justice system is still proceeding exactly as it should. It also may indicate that criminal charges for activities like money laundering, witness tampering, RICO, bank fraud and insurance fraud may still be in the President’s future.

– rob rünt

“Finish It The Hell Up!”

“Finish It The Hell Up!”

Those words were spoken by U.S. Representative Trey Gowdy (R-SC), expressing frustration over what he sees as the slow pace of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential election. Gowdy’s words reflect a perception among many on the right, fed and amplified by the likes of Fox News, that Mueller’s team is dawdling, and that a lack of charges against the President by now means unquestionably that there is nothing there. Because of the constant repetition of this misconception in some circles, some clarification is needed.

First, Gowdy’s statement is ironic, since the House Judiciary Committee, led by Trey Gowdy, spent 30 months investigating Hillary Clinton’s possible role in the Benghazi attack between May 8, 2014 and December 12, 2016. While Benghazi was a serious incident, it was far less consequential than a U.S. President being assisted by a hostile foreign adversary to get elected. We are currently in the 14th month of the Mueller investigation, which began on May 17, 2017. And as Special Counsel investigations go, this one has taken a relatively short length of time thus far. The chart below was published by the Washington Post.


It is also important to look at the types of crimes that Mueller is likely investigating. Steve Bannon reportedly said “this is all about money laundering.” I believe that Trump knowingly or unknowingly laundered money for Russian oligarchs and Russian organized crime figures for decades. There is an abundance of evidence of Trump real estate deals with Russians in which Trump properties were purchased at an inflated price and quickly resold for a significantly lower price, and in which properties were paid for with all cash – telltale signs of money laundering. An example would be the sight-unseen sale of a Palm Beach mansion to Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev (whose yacht and plane coincidentally appeared numerous times near Trump campaign events).

Money laundering is an intentionally complex and opaque crime. That’s the point of money laundering: the goal is to disguise the original illegitimate source of the money by processing it – often through multiple opaque transactions, shell companies, etc. – in a way that ultimately makes the money appear legitimate (even if at a loss – at least now it can be used). Money laundering is therefore an extremely time-consuming crime to investigate, and this case likely involves many multiple incidents of it.

In Russia, Putin demands a cut of all illicit money that the Russian mafia and oligarchs take in. If Trump were laundering money (a felony) for them, Putin would absolutely have a long and thorough awareness of that. Such knowledge – far more than any alleged salacious video from the Moscow Ritz Carlton – is likely the “kompromat” (compromising material) that Putin has on Trump, and with which Putin may in fact be blackmailing the President of the United States.

In addition to a lengthy history of money laundering – a clear motive for Trump to cooperate with Russia – Mueller’s team must also look into evidence of cooperation between the Trump Campaign / Trump Transition Team / White House and a foreign government run by a former KGB officer who knows how to cover his tracks. Potential witnesses and participants from Russia cannot be subpoenaed, and also know that they could potentially be murdered or jailed if they choose to offer evidence or testimony to Mueller. Those witnesses must therefore be presumed inaccessible.

Even so, you might say, if Trump has been involved in any criminal activity and/or collusion with Russia, Mueller must certainly have evidence of it by now – over a year into the investigation – so Mueller’s silence clearly indicates that he has found no such evidence. I believe that Mueller currently has a ton of evidence against a number of people from Trump’s campaign and possibly against the President himself. But consider what you do when playing poker. Do you pick up your hand and announce excitedly “Hey, I just got two pair! If I get another ace or king. I’ll have a full house!” Or do you keep your mouth shut, betray no emotion, and move calmly forward?

Mueller disclosing the evidence that he has collected at this point could compromise the rest of the investigation in multiple ways. It could tip off wrongdoers about who is providing information and what that information is. It could enable the President to know which facts not to lie about if he is ever interviewed by Mueller, and it could give him time to develop a plausible explanation for those particular facts. It could result in some witnesses being paid off, or if the participants involved are dangerous enough, it could result in witnesses being killed.

Some Republicans have stated the Mueller should let Congress know what evidence has been gathered so far, to prove to them, as part of their oversight responsibility, that the investigation is pursuing real issues and not simply wasting taxpayer money on, as the President calls it, a “witch hunt.” This is a legitimate argument.

Yet many of the same Republicans leading this charge, like U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) – a former member of the Trump Transition Team and currently Chair of the House Intelligence Committee (who should theoretically know better than anyone about the proper handling of sensitive information) – have proven repeatedly that they cannot treat the information with the care that it deserves. Upon getting key information, Nunes has instead chosen to run to tell the President what he has learned, or has called a press conference to be the first to put a spin on the information. Both of these activities jeopardize the investigation by informing potential suspects about an ongoing investigation.

I want to see the Meuller investigation completed as soon as possible – likely for a different reason than Trey Gowdy does. But I also know that what Mueller is likely investigating is extremely complex, involves years of activity long pre-dating the 2016 campaign, involves witnesses who can never be questioned, and involves a Congress whose members cannot all be relied upon to put justice above partisan or selfish interests. So I force myself to be patient and believe that justice will prevail.

Of all the people in this situation, I trust Robert Mueller the most. Until the President and Fox News began their slanderous drumbeat to tarnish his name and reputation, Mueller was known to Republicans and Democrats alike as a brilliant and solid law enforcement official of unwavering integrity. That was why he was approved for his current responsibilities by both parties in an otherwise deeply divided House and Senate. Mueller is still the same man that he was before the smear campaign began, and I will trust whatever outcome he and his team arrive at, even if that outcome is that there is no evidence whatsoever of any wrongdoing by the President.

– rob rünt

June 11 – 17, 2017


Articles & Editorials:

Main Stories

Jeff Sessions

Sessions Heatedly Denies Improper Russia Contacts
(Washington Post – 6/13/17)

Sessions Can’t Invoke Executive Privilege, But He’s Using it a Lot
(Los Angeles Times – 6/13/17)

Jeff Sessions’ Explanation for Firing Comey Just Doesn’t Make Sense
(CNN – 6/14/17)

The Memo: Five Takeaways from Jeff Sessions’s Testimony
(The Hill – 6/14/17)

 Full Transcript of Jeff Sessions Testimony
(Politico – 6/13/17)

25 Times Jeff Sessions Had a Convenient Memory Lapse While Testifying
(Rolling Stone – 6/13/17)

GOP senator blocking Trump nominee until he gets answers from DOJ
(The Hill – 6/15/17)

Russian Hacking Update

Russian Cyber Hacks on U.S. Electoral System Far Wider Than Previously Known
(Business Insider – 6/13/17)

Russia Could Hack 2020 Election Too, Report Says: 39 States Hit in 2016
(Newsweek – 6/13/17)

The Hard Truth Keeps Trickling Out, Little by Little
(Esquire – 6/13/17)

Hate Crimes

Lawmaker Steve Scalise Injured in GOP Baseball Shooting. Suspect James T. Hodgkinson Dies After Shootout
(Washington Post – 6/14/17)

Suspect Dies After Shooting At GOP Baseball Practice In Virginia
(National Public Radio – 6/14/17)

Hodgkinson’s Facebook Page Gets Quick Reaction
(Belleville News-Democrat – 6/14/17)

Other Stories That You Should Know About:

Obstruction of Justice

Donald Trump Under Investigation for Potential Obstruction of Justice
(The Guardian – 6/14/17)

Trump Conflates ‘Phony Collusion’ And Possible Obstruction Of Justice Investigation
(National Public Radio – 6/14/17)

President Trump Blasts Report on Possible Obstruction of Justice Probe
(Fortune – 6/14/17)

Law Professor Just Laid Out What The Obstruction Of Justice Investigation Means For Trump
(Washington Journal – 6/15/17)

National Security

Suspected N.Korea Drone Photographed US Missile Defense Site
(ABC News – 6/13/17)

Qatar Buys U.S. F-15s Days After Trump Says Country Funds Terror
(NBC News – 6/15/17)

Senate Overwhelmingly Passes New Russia and Iran Sanctions
(Washington Post – 6/15/17)

White House Wants More Flexible Russia Sanctions Deal From Congress
(New York Magazine – 6/17/17)

Robert Mueller

Republicans to Trump: Hands off Mueller
(Politico – 6/12/17)

Robert Mueller Chooses his Investigatory Dream Team
(Wired – 6/14/17)

Mueller Expands Special Counsel Office, Hires 13 Lawyers
(CNN – 6/16/17)


The Bubble: How conservative and liberal media reacted to Sessions’ testimony
(USA Today – 6/15/17)

Don’t Believe Anonymously Sourced Reports, Justice Official Says
(New York Times – 6/16/17)


Trump rolls back some, not all, changes in US-Cuba relations
(Boston Herald – 6/17/17)

Cuba to Trump: US in no ‘condition to lecture us’ on human rights
(CNN – 6/17/17)

Making Trump’s Bank Account Great Again

Trump Reports Hundreds of Millions in Financial Liabilities
(NBC News – 6/16/17)

Donald Trump Reports He’s Getting Rich as President
(The Atlantic – 6/16/17)


Trump Family Wedding Planner to Head New York’s Federal Housing Office
(New York Times – 6/16/17)

 Keeping Track of the Basics:


Berkeley author George Lakoff says, ‘Don’t underestimate Trump’
(Berkeleyside – 5/7/17)

Sessions: I can’t discuss conversations with the president. 9 legal experts: Yes, you can.
(Vox – 6/14/17)

Where Trump Learned to Love Ritualized Flattery
(The New Yorker – 6/13/17)

Alternative Facts from an Alternative Universe

Self-selecting our news sources, a reluctance to hear opposing ideas, and the choice by many of us to surround ourselves only with like-minded individuals has resulted in many Americans becoming oblivious to the beliefs of those with whom they disagree. This bubble helped create the world of “alternative facts” in which Donald Trump could become President.

To counter this, each week I will present a little of what Trump’s supporters are thinking. Their reality may be very different from yours. Please listen/read to the end, and consider what respectful questions you could ask to better understand and have a conversation, rather than seeking to prove them wrong as quickly as possible and shut them down. We can’t change minds if we can’t talk to each other.

Trump’s Base in Blue Earth County Stands by Him After Rough Start
(Star Tribune – 6/1817)

Cartoons, Images & Videos

1992 interview has interesting similarities to Comey’s testimony about a loyalty pledge:

Australian Prime Minister mocks Trump:

Source: Unknown:


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Source: Unknown:


Events & Actions

Resources & Organizations

June 4 – 10, 2017


Articles & Editorials:

Main Stories

Robert Mueller

Special Counsel Mueller Puts an Expert in the Mafia and Fraud at the Heart of His Investigation
(Daily KOS – 6/6/17)

‘Brilliant’ Criminal Law Expert Joins Mueller’s Team on Russia Probe
(Chicago Tribune – 6/9/17)


Federal Government Contractor in Georgia Charged With Removing and Mailing Classified Materials to a News Outlet
(Department of Justice – 6/5/17)

NSA leak suspect Reality Winner allegedly bragged in jail calls she would ‘play that card’ of being ‘pretty, white and cute’
(Business Insider – 6/9/17)

Former FBI Director James Comey

Comey Told Sessions: Don’t Leave Me Alone With Trump
(New York Times – 6/6/17)

Comey Accuses White House Of ‘Lies, Plain And Simple’ About His Firing
(National Public Radio – 6/8/17)

“I can definitively say the President is not a liar.”

– White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders
   June 8 Press Conference (The Hill – 6/8/17)

Full Transcript and Video: James Comey’s Testimony on Capitol Hill
(New York Times – 6/8/17)

7 Takeaways from Comey’s Extraordinary Testimony About What Trump Told Him to Do
(Washington Post – 6/8/17)

Ryan Defends Trump: President is New at This
(CNN – 6/8/17)

The Five Lines of Defense Against Comey — and Why They Failed
(The Atlantic – 6/8/17)

And while everyone was paying attention to the Comey hearing, remember what resulted from bank deregulation by the end of the George W. Bush years?

House Passes Sweeping Legislation to Roll Back Banking Rules
(Washington Post – 6/9/17)


 Trump Sees Comey’s Testimony as ‘Complete Vindication’ — and His Fans Agree
(Washington Post – 6/10/17)

President Trump’s Lawyer’s Statement on Comey Hearing
(CNN – 6/8/17)

Calling Comey a Liar, Trump Says He Will Testify Under Oath
(New York Times – 6/9/17)

See May 18 blog entry:
“Why Donald Trump Will Be Impeached and May Go To Prison”

Trump: I’m Willing to Testify Under Oath About Comey Claims
(CNN – 6/9/17)

Other Stories That You Should Know About:

Testimony Before Congress by Daniel Coats (Director of National Intelligence) and Mike Rogers (NSA Director)

Top Intelligence Official Told Associates Trump Asked Him if He Could Intervene with Comey on FBI Russia Probe
(Washington Post – 6/6/17)

Coats and Rogers Refuse to Say if Trump Asked Them to Sway Russia Probe
(Politico – 6/7/17)

Transcript of Testimony by Coats and Rogers
(CNN – 6/7/17)

Testimony from Attorney General Jeff Sessions Coming Up

Sessions Says he Plans to Testify Before Senate Intelligence Panel
(CNN – 6/10/17)

Trump Supporters

It’s Time to Bust the Myth: Most Trump Voters Were not Working Class
(Washington Post – 6/5/17)

Business Dealings

How Donald Trump Shifted Kids-Cancer Charity Money Into His Business
(Forbes – 6/6/17)

Eric Trump’s Cancer Charity Event was Billed by Trump for Use of Golf Course
(CBS News – 6/7/17)

Democrats to Sue Trump Over Conflicts of Interest
(Politico – 6/7/17)

International Relations

Foreign Relations Chairman Stunned by Trump’s Qatar Tweets
(The Hill – 6/6/17)

Russian fighter Intercepts U.S. Bomber Over Baltic Sea
(Reuters – 6/6/17)

Nikki Haley Warns US May Pull Out of UN Human Rights Council Over ‘Anti-Israel Bias’
(The Independent UK – 6/6/17)

North Korea Slams Trump’s Decision to Pull out of Paris Accord as ‘the Height of Egotism’
(Washington Post – 6/7/17)

North Korea’s Antiship Missile Test Aims to Show It Can Repel Assault
(New York Times – 6/8/17)


Former US Intelligence Chief: Watergate Pales in Comparison to Russia Probe
(CNN – 6/7/17)


ACT for America Stages Marches Against ‘Sharia Law’ Nationwide, Arrests Made
(NBC News – 6/10/17)

 Keeping Track of the Basics:


 Donald Trump is a Profoundly Incompetent President
(Chicago Tribune – 6/7/17)

Reality Winner isn’t a Whistleblower — or a Victim of Trump’s War on Leaks
(Washington Post – 6/8/17)

Russia’s Attempt to Hack US Election Officials, Explained
(Vox – 6/6/17)

Trump has Mastered the Art of Seeming Like He’s Telling the Truth
(Washington Post – 6/9/17)


Cartoons, Images & Videos

Comedian John Mulvaney on Stephen Colbert’s show:

This Week’s Blog Entry:


What You Don’t Need to Know: Understanding Intelligence and Law Enforcement Regarding Trump

Events & Actions

Resources & Organizations


May 14 – 20, 2017


Articles & Editorials:

Main Stories


WSJ: Toronto Hotel Deal Now Part Of Probe Into Trump Ties To Russia
(Talking Points Memo – 5/17/17)

House Majority Leader to Colleagues in 2016: ‘I Think Putin Pays’ Trump
(Washington Post – 5/17/17)

Putin Offers to Provide a ‘Record’ of Trump’s Disclosures to Russian Envoys
(New York Times – 5/17/17)

Donald Trump’s Son-in-Law Jared Kushner ‘Person of Interest in Russia Investigation’
(The Independent UK – 5/19/17)

James Comey Firing

Comey Memo Says Trump Asked Him to End Flynn Investigation
(New York Times – 5/16/17)

Donald Trump Just Staked his Presidency on 4 Words
(CNN – 5/19/17)

Trump Told Russians That Firing ‘Nut Job’ Comey Eased Pressure From Investigation
(New York Times – 5/19/17)

Trump Meets in Oval Office with Russians, Leaks Classified Info

Trump Revealed Highly Classified Intelligence to Russia, in Break With Ally, Officials Say
(New York Times – 5/15/17)

White House Scrambles to Limit Damage After Latest Bombshell
(The Hill – 5/16/17)

Who was in Trump’s meeting with the Russians?
(CNN – 5/16/17)

The Terrible Cost of Trump’s Disclosures
(The Atlantic – 5/15/17)

Israeli Official: Trump Sharing Intelligence With Russia Is “Worst Fears Confirmed”
(Buzzfeed – 5/16/17)

Trump’s Disclosure Endangered Spy Placed Inside ISIS by Israel, Officials Say
(ABC News – 5/16/17)

After Intel Leak: Former Mossad Head Says Israel Will ‘Think Twice’ Before Sharing Info With US
(Jerusalem Online – 5/17/17)

Special Prosecutor Appointed

Robert Mueller, Former F.B.I. Director, Is Named Special Counsel for Russia Investigation
(New York Times – 5/17/17)

Special Counsels, Special Prosecutors, and Other Investigators, Explained
(New York Times – 5/17/17)

Trump Says Special Counsel Appointment ‘Hurts Our Country’
(CNN – 5/18/17)

Other Stories That You Should Know About:

The Fake News Media

10 Journalism Brands Where You Find Real Facts Rather Than Alternative Facts
(Forbes – 2/1/17)

Trump, Saying He Is Treated ‘Unfairly,’ Signals a Fight
(New York Times – 5/17/17)

Conflicts of Interest

Dem Unveils Bill to Make Trump Refund Travel Costs
(The Hill – 5/16/17)

“Pay Trump Bribes Here” Was Projected Across The Entrance Of Trump’s DC Hotel
(Buzzfeed – 5/15/17)

Mental Illness

National Security Council officials have strategically included Trump’s name in “as many paragraphs as we can because he keeps reading if he’s mentioned.”

(Reuters – 5/17/17)


How Does the Impeachment Process Work?
(US News & World Report – 5/16/17)

McCain: Russia Probe Reaching the Point ‘of Watergate Size’
(CNN – 5/17/17)

First Republicans Talk Possibility of Impeachment for Trump
(The Hill – 5/17/17)

Mike Pence

Cummings: Either Pence is Lying or was ‘Running a Sloppy Shop’
(Politico – 5/19/17)

Trump Goes Abroad to Teach Peace and Religious Tolerance

Trump to Give Speech on Islam in Saudi Arabia
(ABC News – 5/16/17)

Travel Ban Architect Writing Trump’s Speech on Islam
(CNN – 5/19/17)

Trump Cancels Visit to Ancient Masada Site After Israel Refuses Helicopter Landing
(Newsweek – 5/18/17)

Turkish Security Punch/Kick Americans During Erdogan/Trump Visit

Turkish Security Involved in DC Protester Assault
(CNN – 5/17/17)

 Keeping Track of the Basics:


Democrats are Falling for Fake News About Russia: Why Liberal Conspiracy Theories are Flourishing in the Age of Trump
(Vox – 5/19/17)

When the World Is Led by a Child

(Conservative Columnist David Brooks, New York Times – 5/15/17)

“We’ve got this perverse situation in which the vast analytic powers of the entire world are being spent trying to understand a guy whose thoughts are often just six fireflies beeping randomly in a jar.”

David Brooks, Republican Columnist

The Criminal President?
(New York Times – 5/17/17)

I Wrote ‘The Art of the Deal’ with Trump. His Self-Sabotage is Rooted in his Past.
(Washington Post – 5/16/17)

I Know One of the Sources
(The Resurgent – 5/16/17)

What Would Happen If Donald Trump Were Impeached?
(Alternet – 5/17/17)

Trump’s Overseas Trip Must be Canceled: The Risks are Too Great
(Washington Post – 5/16/17)

Alternative Facts from an Alternative Universe

Self-selecting our news sources, a reluctance to hear opposing ideas, and the choice by many of us to surround ourselves only with like-minded individuals has resulted in many Americans becoming oblivious to the beliefs of those with whom they disagree. This bubble helped create the world of “alternative facts” in which Donald Trump could become President.

To counter this, each week I will present a little of what Trump’s supporters are thinking. Their reality may be very different from yours. Please listen/read to the end, and consider what respectful questions you could ask to better understand and have a conversation, rather than seeking to prove them wrong as quickly as possible and shut them down. We can’t change minds if we can’t talk to each other.


Trump supporters react to firing of FBI Director James Comey:
(CNN – 5/10/17)

Cartoons, Images & Videos

So … how much of a laughing stock does America need to become before we’re truly “Great Again?”
Source: Unknown:


Current cover of Time Magazine:


Posted on Facebook by The Opposition Report:




Source: Unknown


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Source: Unknown



Asking for a friend …


Source: Unknown


Source: Anonymous


Source: Anonymous


This Week’s Blog Entry:


Why Donald Trump Will be Impeached and May Go to Prison

Events & Actions

Resources & Organizations