Second, to reiterate, this is not a situation in which there is doubt about whether what Flynn said was false. He does not deny providing false information; the only issue is whether he did so deliberately. Flynn was a longtime intelligence pro who led the Defense Intelligence Agency. Could he get one or two things wrong? Maybe . . . but multiple inaccuracies about important communications with a rival foreign power? It is hard to believe that someone of Flynn’s high-level intelligence background could do that innocently. And how, then, could one argue both that this is possible and that Flynn was a good fit for national security advisor?

Third, Flynn’s defenders rely heavily on a red herring. They emphasize the congressional testimony from Comey and McCabe that the agents who interviewed Flynn believed he was not being deceptive. Even if this is so, however, what does that prove? If I lie to you but I do it convincingly enough that you believe me, that doesn’t mean I told the truth; it means you are wrong. Again, the question here is not accuracy; we know Flynn was inaccurate. The question is whether he intended to deceive. The best witness on the operation of Flynn’s mind is Flynn. The agents were making their best judgment based on his demeanor, but they are not mind-readers; Flynn, by contrast, knows what he was thinking.

Fourth, Flynn filed a sentencing memorandum in which he acknowledges that he lied but maintains that the FBI hoodwinked him into doing so. I don’t see how those who claim Flynn pled guilty to a non-crime under pressure can get around this.