Newest Manafort revelations reveal ‘hardest parts of the puzzle’ of the Russia probe: Report
Former Donald Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort (mugshot)

Washington Post national investigative reporter Carol Leonnig told MSNBC the latest partial transcript from Paul Manafort's trial revealed "some of the hardest parts" of the Russia probe puzzle.


"It's almost like when you have one of those puzzles you get for a holiday gift and there are like seven really hard pieces and they're just empty on the board and you don't know where to put them," Leonnig said. "It's like we're getting some of the really hard puzzle pieces now in this sealed hearing partial transcript."

Leonnig said that the revelations about Manafort's meetings with Russian operative and former GRU office Konstantin Kilimnik were "amazing."

"Now we are learning that this August 2 meeting comes in the middle of so much drama," she said. "You have the Republican nominee for president saying a ton of things that don't really seem to speak to American voters," highlighting Trump's support for the Russian annexation of Crimea.

"You have the platform change at the convention which was always sort of suspicious but pooh-poohed by people in the GOP as having nothing to do with Russians," Leonnig went on. "You have Manafort saying 'I will give private briefings to that guy, Oleg Deripaska', a Putin ally. And now we know August 2, a Deripaska ally was asking to meet with Manafort." She added "there's something very bizarre" about the fact that all of these incidents took place at the same time."

Watch the video below.