The Woman Who Refused to Go Away

July 12, 2020 Updated: July 13, 2020


I can freely say that, in the more than 3 1/2 years that I’ve been covering Spygate and the Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn case, Svetlana Lokhova is one of my heroes.

With the governments of both the United States and United Kingdom stacked against her, as well the news media conglomerates of both countries, she has fought for more than three years to clear her name after she was dragged quite against her will right into the middle of the biggest political scandal of all time.

And I believe, in the end, she will win in her heroic struggle to bring the truth to light.

A central figure in this, according to Lokhova, is a former colleague from Cambridge, professor Stefan Halper.

Halper is no peripheral figure in the Spygate scandal. Far from it. I’ve written about Halper several times over the past two years since his fingerprints appear at every corner of Spygate. He’s not only the prime suspect for planting fake stories about Flynn and Lokhova in the press, but he also reached out and met with Trump campaign advisers George Papadopoulos and Carter Page, allegedly surreptitiously recording his conversations with both men on behalf of the FBI.

Halper and Lokhova have been locked in ferocious legal combat in the courts for years at this point, with no end in sight.

It must be absolutely infuriating to Halper that Lokhova hasn’t given up yet. She has been on his trail seeking justice for more than three long years now. Most people would have abandoned their quest to clear their name by now, convinced the deck was just too stacked against them.

But not Svetlana Lokhova.

The Beginning of Lokhova’s Long Ordeal

Lokhova’s ordeal began back in 2014 with a simple dinner invitation. A private dinner held at Cambridge to honor then-Defense Intelligence Agency Director Flynn.

Three years later, someone decided to use this Cambridge dinner at which both Flynn and Lokhova were together in the same room for the only time in their lives to peddle a story to the news media about Flynn being “compromised” by “a Russian woman.” It was crucially important to this person, whomever it was, that the false narrative that Trump and his associates were heavily involved with the Russian government continued to grow and spread.

And Lokhova’s sole and incidental contact with Flynn back in 2014 provided an opportunity.

What happened here is as infuriating as it sounds. An anonymous coward in early 2017 began seeding the UK and U.S. media with stories claiming Flynn had been “compromised” by a suspected female “Russian agent.”

Lokhova has long suspected that the anonymous source for these media stories about her and Flynn is none other than Stefan Halper himself.

A False Media Smear Campaign to Drive a Russiagate Narrative

It must be remembered what the political atmosphere was like in early 2017. Many people were still trying to get over the shock of Donald Trump winning the presidential election and seeking explanations for how this could have happened.

A convenient explanation that was seized upon beginning in November 2016—an explanation that was pushed by the Clinton campaign itself—was that Hillary Clinton had lost the election because Trump had cheated with Putin’s help.

Soon after a bogus FBI investigation of Flynn, launched with both President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden’s assistance, culminated with Flynn being fired as Trump’s national security adviser, stories began appearing in the U.S. and UK news media in March 2017 that sought to strengthen and expand the idea that Trump and his inner circle were riddled with Russian agents.

This was nothing more than an orchestrated media smear campaign targeting two innocent people just to drive a political narrative about Trump administration Russian collusion.

And it cost Lokhova and Flynn dearly.

For Flynn, it helped keep alive the narrative that he was a Russian agent, and that the Trump campaign had only won the 2016 election by cheating Clinton with Putin’s help.

The cost to Lokhova was also severe. Being accused of being a Russian spy—even anonymously—was a career-ender at Cambridge. She lost her position as a research fellow, then had a lucrative book contract canceled.

Lokhova’s New Book Canceled

While her court case dragged on indefinitely, Lokhova was offered a new book contract to tell her story, which she accepted.

The deal for the publication of the book, entitled “The Spider: Stefan A. Halper and the Dark Web of a Coup,” had been done.

The final draft had been submitted.

Lokhova had even stayed in the United States at great financial burden to ensure the final draft was finished on time for the publication date.

And then came the legal threats to the publisher.

The result of this was that the publisher canceled the book (although you can still find the listing for it on

Well, that didn’t stop Lokhova.

And now you can read her book for yourself because she just self-published it.

I wonder how Stefan Halper feels about that.

Brian Cates is a writer based in South Texas and the author of “Nobody Asked For My Opinion … But Here It Is Anyway!” He can be reached on Twitter @drawandstrike.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.