He has a lengthy military background, academic credentials and, until recently, a largely apolitical financial career.
But now, Carter Page is a central character in the investigation into Russia’s meddling in the United States election.
♦ Donald Trump announced in March 2016 that Page was one of his campaign’s foreign-policy advisers. Yet Page has for months refused to say who brought him into the campaign.
♦ He remains involved in Russia through his investment firm Global Energy Capital LLC, which focuses on energy investment and advisory tservices in developing markets.
♦ Page had described his work in Moscow...as having helped take Russia’s Gazprom from a normal state oil company to “super major status.”
♦ Page wanted to attract global investors to energy projects in former Soviet republics.
♦ Page did have what he describes as an unwitting exchange with a spy who said he was a Russian United Nations official.
♦ Page also received largely unreported attention from nationalist organizations within Russia.
♦ Page’s speech in Moscow last July 7 drew this commentary on the [nationalist think tank] Katehon website: “After the reunification of Crimea with Russia and the beginning of operations in Ukraine, he was one of the few American experts who called for understanding the actions of Russia. Page came out openly against the interventionist policy of NATO, which, in his opinion, provoked Russia with its expansion.”
♦ That Page is caught up in international intrigue doesn’t surprise Ian Bremmer, who runs the risk-analysis firm Eurasia Group. “He struck me as extremely smart, but . . . I came to realize quite quickly pro-Kremlin.”
♦ In the late 1990s, the Council on Foreign Relations awarded Page one of its prized international affairs fellowships. What attracted the committee, said the panel member, was Page’s assertion that he worked in military intelligence.
♦ Page is also a frequent visitor to Moscow.
♦ The 35-page private intelligence dossier by former British spy Christopher Steele alleged that Page had met with Igor Sechin, the powerful chief of oil giant Rosneft who offered him the right to broker a 19 percent stake in Rosneft if the Trump administration lifted financial sanctions on Russia.
♦ The dossier’s references to Page re-emerged in news reports after former KGB chief Oleg Erovinkin was found dead in a Moscow alley on Dec. 26. Erovinkin was a top aide to Sechin and was believed to be a go-between for his boss and Putin. His death drew attention in the British media in late January because the former KGB man fit the description of an informant mentioned in Steele’s dossier.